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In 2006, I graduated from Elon University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education. My primary instrument is the piano, but I am also a vocalist. I have a true passion for music and I'm thankful that I am able to do something that I love everyday. If my mother did not encourage me to stick it out with piano lessons 20 years ago I would not be where I am today!!!
I work very hard teaching my students great guitar technique, which is crucial to becoming a good player. I’m always finding new ways to keep them interested in music/guitar and performing in general. I also teach my more advance students how to write music, which we then perform together in recital. Usually the song is named after them. We then share all of those songs with each other. Jack learns Brains’ Song, and Brian learns Dean’s Song, and so on.Every student is different and not all will be interested in becoming outstanding guitar players. In which case I try to concentrate more on their strengths (not mine) which leaves them feeling better about themselves and open to trying something new like song writing or singing. I try to keep the doors open for them to have music in their lives at any level. This is what’s most important…that thy have music in their lives and get to experience a great teacher.
In 2013, I graduated from Shenandoah Conservatory with a Bachelor of Music in Music Education, with a focus in Choral/General Education. Throughout college I actively performed in various types of ensembles such as contemporary acapella groups and small chamber ensembles, including solo performances.
Since I took my first piano lessons as a child, I've dedicated my life to learning as much as I can about music both inside and outside of school and spreading the joy to others. I have been performing consistently with groups since my teen years: first jazz combos, ensembles and University orchestras, and more recently rock and metal acts. I have extensive experience touring, and encourage students to draw on my knowledge as both a studio and live performer. My home studio is well furnished, and has a selection of electric guitars and basses, a full-size upright piano, and a 5-piece Pearl drum kit.
I am a passionate and flexible music instructor who believes in making sure each student discovers their own voice, style and love for music. I think each student has their own path and deserves a lesson plan that reflects their specific goals and musical desires. Whether its getting ready for an audition, preparing for a show, looking to perform professionally, or just learning the craft for your own enjoyment I will make sure to help you achieve your goals. My students have performed locally in open mics, at wineries and other venues. Students have been selected to go to musical programs in New York, auditions in Chicago and competitive choirs for their counties. Several students have also begun to write their own music. I guarantee several performances a year. I have had the privilege of receiving master classes from amazing musicians during the Ella Festival in Newport News with people such as the New York Voices, Kurt Elling, Chris Botti, and Bobby McFerrin. I have also performed in Operas such as Hand Of Bridge, The Tender Land, and The Marriage of Figaro. I was also invited to go on a European Tour with the Virginia Ambassadors of Music touring and performing in seven different countries in sixteen days.
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There are numerous reasons why adults may wish to start taking singing lessons. Singing is a highly enjoyable, fun, and creative way to express yourself musically. Many students take lessons simply to improve their singing for fun or to take up a new hobby. Students who have specific goals in mind can also have lessons to achieve those aims. Often singers want to improve a particular aspect of their singing such as increasing their vocal range or learning to sing with vibrato or greater agility (runs, fills, etc.) Singers who have a certain style of singing in mind can also learn the techniques behind a wide range of genres.
Voice lessons in your home offer a convenient and practical way to master the art of singing. Voice lessons in your home require a piano or keyboard so that the teacher can use that to conduct your lessons. Whether you want to learn classical voice, jazz, pop, or musical theatre styles, the instructors in our network can provide you instruction on what songs would suit your voice best.
Does your child want to audition for a local musical show or national reality singing competition? He or she should wait until after puberty to take voice lessons. At that time, the voice is more mature and the risk of vocal cord damage or strain is limited. Puberty typically occurs when kids are between 11 and 12 years old. By waiting until your child is that age, you protect the voice. You also provide your child with a better chance of success during auditions and performances your child wants to participate in.
There are a number of things to consider for vocalists who wish to keep their voices healthy and in top shape. First, there is no substitute for good vocal technique. Shouting, forcing, pushing, and straining the voice represent bad technique and will likely lead to fatigue or injury. Developing a great singing voice requires strengthening and coordinating the small intrinsic muscles of the larynx, and largely de-activating the muscles that cause constriction and tension. This can be done through specific exercises targeted at developing the necessary coordination and muscular strength. Warm ups and plenty of water should be taken before singing.
During their lessons, students will learn how to sing with good, safe, and effective vocal technique. Learning to sing with good technique is the cornerstone to improving the tone, range, and health of the voice during singing. Students will learn how to warm up properly, how to increase their vocal range, how to improve and strengthen their tone, performance techniques, how to accurately replicate pitch, how to support their singing with good breathing techniques, song interpretation and how to apply these techniques to singing their favorite songs. Vocal technique is not genre specific and the techniques taught can be applied to almost any genre of music. Students will develop these skills by vocalizing to piano scales. These vocal exercises are things such as singing different vowel sounds on different scales, sirens, lip rolls and trills, articulation exercises, and respiratory exercises. The exercises are tailored to the specific needs and ability levels of each individual student.
Review by Mythili Lahiri
My son is truly enjoying his lessons with Chris. He looks forward to them and is motivated to practice. Chris is conscientious and shows up on time and whenever he is supposed to. He communicates clearly if rescheduling is ever required and is accommodating when we need to change the day. I would recommend Chris to anyone.
Review by Sarah M
Dan gave private clarinet lessons to my daughter, Annie, for two years. During that time, she excelled as a member of the middle school band, and maintained first-chair. Dan is an excellent teacher, and Annie looked forward to having one-on-one time with him. In addition to practicing pieces with her, he helped her with scales and greatly improved her tone quality.
Review by Andy Snyder
Giorgi has made learning cello even more fun. From the sympathetic, "It is hard" to the precise, "Be careful about the curve of the thumb" he has strengthened learning in every lesson, without being overwhelming. He started playing a little duet on only the 3rd lesson or so, which made me feel, even as a beginner, that I'm already starting to make (occasionally screachy) music. He has suggested a variety of drills and practice techniques which have also sped up the process a lot. And he has a good sense of humor and surprising amount of patience.
Review by Nancy Fritsch
I honestly cannot say enough positive things about Rachel. We met her through CYT where my daughter took theater classes from Rachel and was directed by Rachel in several musicals. Because Rachel was so wonderful to work with and so clearly talented at teaching and directing, several years ago, my daughter started private vocal lesson with her and I have seen my daughter's vocal abilities grow in leaps and bounds. Rachel is an ace at picking music to work on that stretches abilities while at the same time, keeps vocal lessons fun. I highly recommend her as a voice and theater coach.
Review by Ericcharlton
Rahsaan is an extremely talented player who relates really well with my teenagers. He has them both interested in learning. Given Rahsaan's expertise, it's clear that even though they are beginners now, they can learn from him for a long time to come. He's a real nice laid-back guy and both the boys really enjoy their time with him. I've been very impressed and pleased with the experience.
Review by Maria
My daughter has been taking piano lessons through her school district program for the last two years. She had learned a lot in that class but I noticed that she needed advanced classes at this point. After reviewing several websites I decided to enroll my daughter for the trial at MUSIKA. We got Mrs. Veronica B., and I am more than happy we got her as my daughter's teacher. Mrs. Veronica B. was very professional and very knowledgeable at the trial day. She was able to assess my daughter skill's level, and then she was able to give suggestions about how to improve those skills. My daughter has taken 5 classes with Mrs. Barker, and I can see she enjoys each class and she's improved a lot since day one. I can picture my daughter playing her favorites songs on the piano very soon!!! :-)
Review by Linda
I am a beginning guitar player that has now taken five lessons with Jeff. I cannot speak highly enough of Jeff has a guitar teacher! I have learned more in five lessons than the months I spent trying to learn on my own. Jeff has introduced me to music apps that I can use during my practice sessions, followed up our lessons with comments and/or music, is very encouraging - yet holds high standards. During my lessons I feel that Jeff is very observant and tuned in to your positioning when playing - whether it be your wrist, your arm, or your fingers. He always offers recommendations on ways to try to fix something that I might be struggling with. He really pays attention. As an aside, Jeff is a very talented songwriter and musician. Check him out on YouTube. His songs are very beautiful and inspirational. I'm honored to be his student! - Linda
Review by Emily
Steve gets you started right away with songs but also goes into music theory and reading music which adds to understanding and appreciation of the music. He is very approachable and you can tell that he absolutely loves music and teaching. It is hard not to be excited about the process of learning with Steve. If you are considering lessons I highly recommend Steve for any level of student.
Review by Lucinda
Melissa is very encouraging, positive, supportive and patient. She knows how to explain the technical details of flute and music notation to kids in a way that makes sense to them. She has been reliable so far turning up on time and calling if there is a need to reschedule. I would definitely recommend her to others.
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