When possible, with students of similar age and level, we pair up for occasional group lessons, duets, or other ensembles. Students learn to listen to each other for rhythm, timing, tempo, dynamics, and balance of sound. They learn to tell their "musical story" together. It's great fun to perform with a partner!
As I work with my students to help them develop the skills they need to understand, appreciate, and communicate in the language of music, and to reap the greatest possible enjoyment from their music, we focus on the following:
1. Rhythm and Pulse
2. Basics of Theory and Harmony
4. Intelligent Memorizing
5. Variety of Repertoire & Styles
6. Sighreading & Ear Training
7. Ensemble Playing
I encourage students to participate in recitals, auditions, and other performance opportunities in their school, church, or community. Many times they perform for their school talent show. Each spring we have our annual studio recital.
The National Guild of Piano Teachers holds annual non-competitive auditions each spring. This is a performance option for a student of any age or ability who wants to compete only with him or herself to perform to a higher standard.
Students learn on a 1921 Steinway Grand Piano. It is a beautiful, well-tuned, and well-maintained instrument on which to learn and perform. I also have a Yamaha electronic keyboard where we can experiment with a variety of different sounds.
Achievement Day activities, also held in the spring, are meant to recognize and encourage achievement in music study in a non-competitive performance event. In addition to performance, other options include music-related art, written projects such as poetry or essays, or performance on another instrument. Medals and ribbons are awarded to participants.