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Fifty years of keyboard experience, primarily in the classical genre. Piano instructor for 30 years. Comfortable with special needs students (ADHD, Tourette's, aphasia). I specialize in preparing students for higher education requirements and professional careers.
My method is to incorporate proper technique and fingering, and though reading music is important, i also put emphasis on hearing what your playing and also understanding it theoretically. This way students will be well-rounded and be able to understand what they are playing from an audio and theoretical stance, rather than just being told what to play by the notes on the sheet music. What this does is it allows the student to become independent so that they don't have to rely on music and a teacher to be able to play or pick-up songs they desire to play. I want them to be able to ultimately teach themselves and understand music in a way that they can apply it to any style or song in the future.
I couldn't imagine my life without teaching. To nurture a love for music in another, especially a child, is a gift I would not give up. I strive to find the correct balance of technique and performance, practice and play, focus and fun for each of my students. Every one of them comes to me with different skills, ambitions, and needs; building honest, open relationships with student, parent, and teacher is essential to meeting those needs. Each lesson is framed by realistic goal setting that challenges the student enough to ensure that he or she can taste enough accomplishment to want to keep striving for more.
I like my students to work on their performance personas, as well as technique and repertoire. I want my students to be engaged and excited about the music they are working on and to practice performing it like the star that they are!
It is important that each student progresses at their own pace with reasonable and realistic goals that they can reach. Acknowledging accomplishments helps fuel a students desire to achieve even greater challenges. My desire is to find what motives the student and create a curriculum that will refine them based on their desire.
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Our lessons for adults are focused around teaching vocal technique with the specific aims of the student in mind. Many adults are just looking to improve their singing for their own enjoyment.We also teach students who are auditioning for talent shows such as American Idol, or who are preparing for exams, recording sessions, or gigs. Adult students may want an honest, professional assessment of their voices since family or friends, well-meaning as they may be, are often not objective judges. Learning to sing can be a good boost to confidence, develops all-round musicianship, and is open to adults of all ages.
Musika offers one-on-one, in-home singing lessons that are designed specifically for each individual student. Whether your lesson takes place in the studio or at home, students will get the exact same lesson content, with the only difference being the location. Parents will find home singing lessons a much more convenient option for their child, as it saves the time and costs of transporting their children to and from the studio. Younger students will find that learning to sing in the comfort of their own homes greatly benefits their development as they are learning in a supportive, secure, and familiar environment.
Children who want to take voice lessons should wait until they start puberty. Before age 11 or 12, the voice is not mature enough to handle singing lessons. Kids could suffer vocal damage or strain if they start formal training too early. Alternatively, waiting until kids mature reduces the risk of permanent damage. Kids stand a better chance of singing well into adulthood if they wait until their voice is mature enough for voice lessons. By waiting, they protect their vocal cords and are physically ready for regular voice lessons and daily exercises vocal training requires.
Voice lessons will focus on developing proper breathing and vocal technique to improve your singing. You will learn how to support and project your voice even as you learn to read music. You will also learn how to interpret different styles of music, develop performance techniques, and emotionally interpret song lyrics and phrases. The most important thing you will learn in voice lessons is how to express yourself through singing!
The voice is the only instrument which actively requires the use of your entire body for its function. This is why maintaining the health of your body in general is crucial to maintaining the health of your voice. Smoking, excessive drinking of alcohol, caffeine, and the use of illegal drugs or certain medications is strongly discouraged. Singers are encouraged to drink room temperature water to promote the hydration of their vocal chords. Excessive screaming, loud singing, or singing for long amounts of time without a rest can cause damage to your voice, and should be avoided. It is important to eat a healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins to keep your whole body and voice healthy. Daily exercise is strongly encouraged, especially activities that require the use of your lungs such as swimming, running, cycling, or aerobics classes, all of which will increase your breath control capacity when singing.
Review by Dylan Jacinto
Jessie is the finest musician I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. I find her overall concept of approaching an instrument to be both comprehensive and effective. Each technique she has acquired has made it possible for her to tailor her method to a variety of ages and individuals. I cannot speak more highly of Miss Jessie's abilities. Her lengthy and impressive cradecials speak for themselves. I recommend no hesitation in seeking her services!
Review by Joshua Thompson
I have known Erin since I attended graduate school at the Hartt School in Connecticut. Last year she came to the college I teach at to give a master class and talk about her experiences as a musician abroad. She has proven that she is a capable and wonderful musician and educator. I highly recommend studying with her if you're lucky enough to have the opportunity!
Review by Jennifer
Dave is a fantastic teacher. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to students that I think is invaluable. At the same time, this does not limit him from working with beginning students. He is very communicative with the parents as far as schedule changes. We are so grateful to have found him!!
Review by Jennifer
Lindsey has been coming to our house to give saxophone lessons to our 12 year old daughter for about a month. She is an absolute joy. She is extremely knowledgeable, flexible with her schedule, and my daughter thinks she is "fun" and "cool". We would highly recommend her to anyone wanting music lessons. A+
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!"
Review by Marlo
Danette is a delightful instructor. She always brings a wealth of knowledge, excitement, and enthusiasm to piano lessons with my daughter. She is not only skilled at piano, but she has a wonderful voice quality that she uses to help convey certain techniques and to highlight various points where she intends to draw the students attention.
Review by Stevengournay
There are only a handful of people I count in my life who were great teachers, and Laura is one of them. Her musicianship is so secure as are her technique and personality that she zeros in on my weaknesses and devises exercises to strengthen them, and during the lesson it is not "Do this, no, do that" which is unnerving to a novice. She understands the most important part of study is relaxation, so that is easy to achieve with such a confident and compassionate human. Music is her life and she is eager to share her talent with everyone. A rare find, indeed!
Review by Alex A.
Travis rocks. My 7-year-old son and I both take lessons with him. Travis has moved me off the plateau I was on with lessons that focus on theory and technique. And for my son, he's been able to instill a desire and interest that were missing when he previously took piano lessons. With Travis teaching us, the limits are the ones we impose on ourselves. Needless to say, Travis himself plays a mean guitar to boot!
Review by Howard
We value Chelsea for the quality of her lessons, but also for the flexibility of her schedule. She has worked around family vacations, impromptu summer camps and the upcoming school year. Emily is better prepared to start middle school band this year due to flute lessons from Chelsea and we plan to continue the lessons for the foreseeable future.
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