Making Music

Making Music

5.0 (10)
1 hire on
1 employee
26 years in business

About this pro

I have been teaching privately in southern Orange County for two decades now and have had the pleasure of working with students of all ages, 4 - adult. Every student has unique ways of learning and progressing and I tailor my lessons to the individual for optimum success.

My teaching of keyboard skills incorporates notes, sight-reading, theory, ear-training and composition, providing a strong foundation whether studying for fun or to eventually pursue professionally.  Vocal students learn breath support and vocal techniques that open and strengthen their singing voice and emotional connection. Method courses for both disciplines involve songs/pieces students want to learn, enriching their enjoyment and motivation, while providing a warm, supportive atmosphere that helps free their natural potential. 

Some of my musical experiences include participating in the St. Moritz Festival in Switzerland, solo performances and choir competitions during college, performing at business and social functions, showcasing an original song selected by the Songwriter's Guild of America, and singing the national anthem at Angel Stadium in Anaheim.

I earned a music degree and a teaching credential from the University of California, Irvine.

I also belong to the Music Teacher’s Association of California that offers several programs, recitals, festivals, and Certificate of Merit for students to participate in.

Please check out the websites below for more information and recommendations.

I love helping students discover their talent and potential in music. Whether you're just starting out or have some experience under your belt, I help you hone your skills and develop into an independent musician.

Uncover the true power and resonance of your voice while emotionally connecting to what you sing.

Gain a knowledge of chords, notes, and how music comes together to create beautiful harmonies. Learn the ability to accompany your singing and play any song you love.

Understanding music theory helps with your songwriting or composing, as well, if creating your own music is something you do or strive for.

Let's connect and talk about your goals and how you can reach them!

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Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688
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10 Reviews


  • Jasmine Velasquez

    Really committed to helping my daughter

  • -Katrina H.

    Though I learned to play the piano, my true love is singing. So I was thrilled when I started voice lessons with Nina. My soft, timid voice at first began to open up and before I knew it I was singing my favorite songs in full voice. We worked on my presentation, nuances of expression, and getting that resonant placement that makes all the difference in my sound. I’m glad I have confidence in my voice now and can go after my musical goals.

  • -Elizabeth H.

    I had problems staying in tune when I sang. I never viewed myself as a good singer, but I loved to sing and wished I could do it well. Nina took on the challenge and proved to me that I could learn how to sing the right notes. Not only that, proper, supportive breathing and other vocal techniques brought out a clear sound I didn’t know I had. I don’t need to shy away from singing along anymore for fear of being snickered at.

  • -Steve W.

    Ever since I can remember, I always tried to sing like stars I liked and wanted to emulate. Unfortunately, every time I sang a song, my impersonations stopped my own voice from coming through. Nina helped me believe in my own sound and opened up my vocal range and tone. I had no idea I could really sing good enough as me and that my voice has its own unique timbre. I’m excited and confident about my singing now. Thank you, Nina!

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What is your typical process for working with a new student?

First, I would see where you are in the process. Do you have any experience? Have you ever had lessons? I ask what your goals are and what kind of music you enjoy. From there we pick the right method course books and supplemental music as we go along to help you reach your goals. In singing, the most important part is having excellent breath support and finding the richest, most resonant part of your voice as well as techniques to gain an emotional connection to what you’re singing because this is more important than a flawless voice.

What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

Years of private instruction as well as a degree in music, a teaching credential and many experiences performing gives me the experience to teach music. Additionally, the most important skill is having the ability to explain and instruct in a way that makes it easier and more successful for the student. Not all people that can do can teach!

Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.

I charge $35 for each half-hour lesson. Lessons are weekly.

How did you get started teaching?

I taught afterschool Keyboard classes in the Saddleback and Capo Unified school districts. Parents wanted their children to continue their music instruction, so I offered private lessons with individualized attention.

What types of students have you worked with?

I work with students of all ages. My goal is to help students discover their full potential and to enjoy making music. The main goal of lessons is for students to have fun and play and sing the songs they love. However, I provide students  a strong foundation, teaching correctly and effectively so that if they wish to pursue music professionally, as well, they’ll be prepared.

Describe a recent event you are fond of.

I’ve been asked to describe a certain event I’m fond of. I will say that Shawn Mendes’ recent album and new covers of songs lately have been very moving to me because I hear how deeply talented he is, how far he’s come and will continue to grow and how inspiring that is in the music business and for young people. It reminds me of students I’ve taught for years that finally went off to college but during their last recital and even during lessons brought tears to my eyes because of how beautifully they sang or played and how far they had come in their music training. Notes and measures, expressive voices become moving works of art, expressions of the human condition we can all relate to, that impact us in positive ways. That is what music is all about.

What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?

It is important to find a teacher you feel comfortable with. As a teacher, I am supportive, patient, and create a warm, encouraging atmosphere. 

What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?

Ask a teacher what their policies are on practicing, pricing, and teaching style. Do they allow their students to choose the music they are interested in, along with the fundamental requirements? Do they have a thorough approach, not leaving gaps in instruction? For example, I’ve encountered students who play beautifully but when presented with a song of equal difficulty, cannot read the notes, or perhaps they have no knowledge of theory and how music is put together with no understanding of chords, harmony, or improvising. 

These skills are very important to become an independent musician who can make and create music on their own.

Lessons offered