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Lessons are fun! My philosophy is that students should have music in their lives and benefit from the lessons they take now for years to come. Learning to play a musical instrument will help students with math skills, study habits, and develop a skill that will last for a lifetime. After 3 months students will understand the fundamentals of their string instrument or voice, know how to care for their instrument, warm up properly, be able to read and play/sing introductory passages. After 6 months the student will have learned basic music theory, how to read music, and have advanced through playing/singing multiple songs. I have a violin and viola that I bring to assist in teaching lessons. I expect that the students provide an instrument and their books. A keyboard or piano is essential for voice students for vocalization, and an ipad or tablet keyboard works great. A student need not know how to play piano in order to take voice lessons.
For each instrument the lessons begins with warm ups followed by review of previous lessons and assignment of new lessons depending on progress. I will spend the student according to their abilities. My goal is that the student have an understanding of what that particular lesson was seeking to accomplish. For example, learning to read notes or learning a certain fingering technique.
I am a musician, composer, teacher and author. I graduated from the NYC "Fame School"- Fiorello H. LaGuardia HS of Music and Art. I studied music theory and composition at Mannes Conservatory, NYC and received a BA as a Music Major from Aaron Copland School of Music/Queens College/CUNY. I took Graduate courses studying Special Ed/Music Therapy at Lehman College, NY. After in depth research with creating highly motivational music programs for all ages as well as for children that had ADD, Autism, or Aspergers, I was awarded a grant from the Grammy's to write a book. I have traveled to Europe and the far east teaching creative music workshops. I have been teaching beginner, intermediate and beginner-advanced piano and vocal coaching for 25 years. Teaching music is a way of life. I believe we are all creative individuals. The key is to express ourselves fully through music and enjoy the journey as we learn and grow in our musical expression.
I use the teaching method as previously described, and try to tailor my style for each student. Everyone learns, practices, and progresses uniquely -- so it's part of MY job to figure out the best approach to help each of my students. My experience in both the civilian and military music communities has given me a very open-minded but direct approach to WHAT you should learn, and HOW FAST you should be able to progress each individual student. Just ask how my style may assist you personally, or ask any questions that you may have. I've been a lifetime musician since I was young, and love finding unique and fun ways to motivate my students. I've worked with most styles of music before, and arranged music for many as well, so I'm very comfortable helping students with a variety of disciplines and interests.
I love teaching and connecting on a personal level with my students. My singing experience dates back to high school where I sang in concert choirs as well as an award winning jazz ensemble. From there I attended Orange Coast College, where I studied music theory, jazz and pop vocals. I trained privately for 5 years with the wonderful Nadia Smelser, and to this day impart to my students her techniques and methodologies. Currently, I sing in a big band swing trio called The Harmonettes. We perform locally and throughout the state of California. I perform with various musicians and ensembles, and have served for many years as part of the music ministry at my church. I've had the privilege of being part of the vocal teaching team for our gospel choir, as well as serving on the worship team, teaching introductory voice classes, conducting the children's Christmas choir, and other aspects of the arts ministry
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For children who enjoy singing and want to improve their singing ability, we recommend delaying voice lessons until after age 11 or 12. The vocal instrument is a sensitive one that can be easily damaged or strained. By delaying lessons until the voice is mature, kids protect their voice. While the expert instructors in our network are able to teach students of all ages, we highly recommend young children wait until their voice is able to handle the workload required for voice lesson success. After puberty, kids and their voices are mature enough for the daily exercises and regular lessons provided by the professional and trained teachers in our network.
Maintaining good vocal health is crucial for people wanting to learn how to sing. Misuse of voice can lead to vocal problems that can either prevent students from fulfilling their potential or irreparably damage the voice. There are several simple methods for helping to maintain good vocal health. It is important to remain hydrated by drinking plenty of water, as this will stop the voice drying out, which can irritate the vocal folds and cause soreness and discomfort. It is also important to properly warm up the voice before or at the start of lessons, practice, or a performance.
Adults of all ages and abilities are welcome to start taking singing lessons. Learning to sing is a great way to develop your musicianship, confidence, and self-esteem, and is a fun and rewarding skill to learn. Students who have specific goals in mind such as range extension, learning to correct pitch problems, or to correct bad vocal habits and technique, can achieve these goals with the expert vocal coaches in our network. Many students just want to learn to sing for their own enjoyment and love of singing, or would like to join a band or singing group. All lessons are customized with these goals in mind.
Voice lessons will focus on developing proper breathing technique and vocal technique and ways to improve your singing. You will learn how to support and project your voice, and how to read music so that you can read the melody of the singing line. You will also learn how to interpret different styles of music, performance techniques, and how to emotionally interpret song lyrics and phrases. The most important thing you will learn in voice lessons is how to express yourself through singing!
Musika deals primarily with home lessons for students. The location is the only difference between our in-home lessons and our studio lessons. As they do not have to travel to their lessons, home singing lessons can be highly convenient for those parents and students with a busy schedule. For younger students in particular, having vocal lessons in the comfort of their own home can be of great benefit. They will feel more safe and relaxed in familiar surroundings, allowing them to focus on learning and enjoying their singing.
Review by Lauren Segal
Ed is THE best instructor I've ever had and I've had many instructors over the years in various fields of study. Ed met us at a music store to help choose a guitar, this is after he first called and asked all the right questions. He's supplied my daughter with just the right amount of paper work and just the right amount of new techniques. By this I mean to say that Ed connects with the pace my daughter learns at. I highly recommend Ed AND Musika.
Review by Julie Buranelli
My daughter really enjoys her lessons with Pavel. She is an absolute beginner and Pavel is right with her as she learns the basics. She is completely engaged and always looks forward to her lesson. He packs a lot of learning into their 30 minute time slot - he gets right to it as soon as he walks in the door! He is a great teacher - we highly recommend!
Review by Clinton Poskozim
Martina has been a great teacher. Our son is 8 and had taken some piano lessons before starting with Martina. She came right in and got him to improve. She does a great job of giving him just enough of a challenge to make him work and learn but not any pieces that are so overwhelming he can't get them. She has helped him through a lot of early music theory so that he not only can play the piano but understands the music he is reading in all of its complexity.
Review by Yury
I would like to thank Polina for the series of classical piano lessons I've taken recently. Polina is a fantastic teacher and a high class performer, and I'm really happy I had a chance to meet her! I believe anyone can benefit from the teaching method Polina is practicing regardless of the student proficiency - from beginners to advanced performers. It was a pleasure for me to study classical piano courses under the guidance of such an intelligent & professional teacher! Without doubt, my playing technique has improved a lot and I have signed up for the new classes online already.
Review by Ginger
Unbelievably Awesome. My daughter is a beginner and has some special needs. Justin is more than patient and helpful while being completely thorough and pushing her (in a good way) to try harder. He is encouraging and teaches effectively. I am very pleased. More important, so is my daughter. Thank you Musika! So grateful we found your service and connected with Justin. We highly recommend him.
Review by Queen Natalia
Lara is highly intelligent and knowledgeable in her profession. She is cheerful and personable, and has established a good rapport with students and staff alike. I have found Lara to be a highly competent, personable, patient, kind-hearted, and deeply caring person who is skilled professionally and interpersonally.
Review by Robert Stallone
I am in my 60s and decided to get back into playing my guitar. I thought taking lessons would be a good way to formalize the endeavor. I did have some concern about whether working with a teacher would work out as I've behave only played for my own enjoyment for a long time. Peter and I have had a few lessons together and I am truly enjoying the experience. He is very supportive and flexible. We arrived at a three gold approach that is really working for me. We focus on developing a playlist, learning some of the more iconic tunes from leading artist that I would have a hard time learning on my own and developing some technical skills related to style and music theory. Now I look forward to my next lesson and am already playing better and enjoying the journey. Peter is a great teacher I'm lucky to have the opportunity to work with him.
Review by Brooklyn
Laura is a fabulous teacher. She explains concepts to me using concrete examples so that I can understand changes that I need to make to my posture, breathing, phrasing, etc. She makes warm-up exercises fun, and she's got a great sense of humor over all. Her teaching style is collaborative, more egalitarian (she respects what I already know and meets me at my level), tailored to my particular interests and strengths, and I always look forward to our lessons!
Review by Roberta
My 4 year old son is quite energetic. Another piano teacher tried to teach him before Peter and could not get my son to listen to him at all. That teacher told me that my son had no interest and that we needed to wait before having my son take lessons. Peter started teaching my son a few weeks later. He quickly developed a great rapport with my son. I was astounded when my son sat down and listened to Peter during the first lesson. Peter has remarkable patience and is a natural working with children. He knows when to follow the child's lead. My son is very interested in how the piano works, so Peter takes the time to teach him about this. He is able to use my son's interests (superheroes, Lego, Star Wars, etc.) to refocus him back to playing the piano. Between lessons, he brainstorms on how he can teach my son better. For example, my son was playing the notes, but not understanding rhythm, so Peter looked into it and came back the next week with a new plan which helped. My son looks forward to his lesson every week. When he hears the doorbell ring on lesson day, he exclaims, "Yay! Peter's here!"
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