Alan Cross Music Lessons
Alan has expertise in classical, jazz, pop, and blues. He has worked as a music director, piano accompanist, pop keyboardist and as a leader in a jazz band. Alan has been teaching piano for thirteen years and has had good success with all ages.
He has been teaching since 2007 and has gained a deep love for the work. Alan seeks to instill strong reading ability, a functional and usable understanding of music theory, capable technique, good expression, and creativity.
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Frequently asked questions
What is your typical process for working with a new student?
Alan works to make a tailor made plan for each student. He works for find what musical styles each students is interested in and finds a good level for them to start at.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
Alan is trained in classical and jazz. He has studied piano for twenty eight years and has taught for fourteen. Alan also leads worship at his church in Santa Clara and has worked as a choir director, piano accompanist, youth band leader, and music director for youths and adults.
Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.
$37 for half hour, $55 for fourty five minutes, $72 for hour.
How did you get started teaching?
Alan was encouraged to teach by his teachers. He began teaching during and after Concordia University. After graduating he developed teaching while working as music director at Aliso Viejo Lutheran Church of the Cross. After working as a music director and teaching for five years, Alan moved to Northern California and has been teaching in Saratoga for ten years. Alan specilizes in classical, jazz, blues, and pop.
What types of students have you worked with?
Alan has worked with all ages. The retired, the young, teens, those in their twenties, working adults, even as young as 3 and a 1/2, and fathers or mothers learning along side their children. Alan works well with those seeking to enjoy music and wanting to do their best. Alan is good at slowly helping students develop good practicing. Alan can tend to be good for those who may not otherwise have an easy time getting into piano or music.
Describe a recent event you are fond of.
One of Alan's recent students actually listed Alan as their hero and spoke about him at a public event! Alan tries his best to be clear, concise, and helpful. He tries to explain the basics of music in a way that can be understood and tries to demonstrate and convey teaching ability and musicality.
What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?
Finding a good teacher with a good heart is important. A teacher should be a good player and have a good ear. I try to be encouraging and do work with my students to develop good practice routines. With a young beginner, the practicing may only be 15-20min/day but as they keep at it the practice time will increase to 30/45/60 min per day or more. Making sure the student and teacher work well together is important.
What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?
What kind of music do you like? Do you aspire to be a classical pianist? Do you want to be creative or create music? Do you thrive on preset standards and expectations? Much can be learned by working with a good teacher and by continuing to strive to get better.