Below are a list of Frequently Asked Questions. Don’t hesitate to contact me with further questions.
What age group and levels do you teach?
Beginning and advanced students from grade school to retirement are welcome.
What age should my child begin to study?
Generally, children begin formal individualized music training between the ages of 6 and 8. Prior to this, I encourage students to listen to a variety of music in the home, and take eurythmics classes at the earliest age possible. Singing, dancing and playing elementary instruments is great preparation for private lessons.
Do you teach all levels of adult students, too?
Absolutely. The sense of personal gratification from learning to play the piano is rewarding at any age, but adults appreciate the study of music as it stimulates both the body and the mind. Adults have many separate activites from school-aged students, including many Studio Workshops, chamber events, duet playing, community outreach and competitions, depending upon their level of advancement.
How long are lessons and what do they include?
Lessons range in length from 45 to 60 minutes, generally once a week. Very young students or those wishing to advance at a greater rate or depth are encouraged to take 2 lessons per week. Most lessons include technical work, sight reading, some ear training and theory as well as level-related study of musical periods, composers and their compositions.
What is a Workshop?
Workshops are fun and inspirational student-only Studio events that occur several times a year where students present pieces and occasional discourses on thematically chosen subjects. Adults and school-aged students have separate events, and age-related activities are chosen. Sometimes we’ll choose a music movie to enjoy as well. For example, Halloween is a great time to dress up and explore what makes music scary and how composers who write for movies manipulate us by choosing musical keys, motifs and characteristics that have a gripping effect on us.
Do you offer any group activities other than Studio events?
Several times a year we select area concerts to attend as a Studio. Group discounts and seating is arranged for these events. We encourage family and friends to join us in enjoying the many diverse performances available in the Washington Metropolitan area.
What technical resources are available in your Studio?
A Steinway grand piano, synthesizer, state-of-the-art A/V and recording equipment, computer programs and an extensive music, books and CD library enhance our instructional capabilities.
What kind of environment do I need to create for piano study in my home?
There’s no replacing a good, well-lit, acoustic piano with a piano bench to begin your work, and students and families are encouraged to prepare for their music studies by creating the proper environment for optimum learning. A separate room or space away from phones, televisions and play areas, but never relegated to dark and isolated areas such as basements, are best. 88-key weighted keyboards are great for vacation homes, as they do not need tuning, but they never substitute for the feel and quality of sound a good acoustic piano can provide. I encourage people to purchase the most they can afford in a piano, to set the stage for success. I work with several licensed and trusted tuners who have websites listed to offer more suggestions about the purchase of a piano.
How do you choose students to work with in your Studio?
All potential students are interviewed, and all interviews are available at no charge. At that time I evaluate students and, for new students, provide simple games and exercises we ‘play’ at the piano, and for students with experience, I listen to work they have prepared. After our meeting, I provide written recommendations by email, determining the readiness or compatibility of the student to our program. If accepted, fees and policies are then provided with enrollment forms.