Cynthia Shaw Music

Cynthia Shaw Music

5.0 (4)
Best of 2022
2 hires on
1 employee
28 years in business

About this pro

I am a classically trained pianist and singer. I have a masters degree in piano performance from Manhattan School of Music. I am a cheerful and knowledgeable teacher who makes my students comfortable in the learning of piano and voice. I help the students move forward in their study through noting and working through the problems that are getting in the way. We work at the students speed and from where the student is right now. My students study with me for many years. I teach only adults, beginners through advanced. 

I love helping people figure out how practice more efficiently and find the levels of joy in understanding the music better. I love working with people and love the one on one connection. 

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Brooklyn, NY 11215
Email verified
Phone verified

4 Reviews


  • Charles Gottesman

    So professional. Understanding with a great ability to motivate without pressure.

  • Jonathan Brandt

    I've been playing piano for 35 years, but Cynthia has introduced me to critical concepts about making music that I've only barely considered during all that time. Meanwhile, she has helped me improve my technique with fresh and eye-opening insights and exercises. After studying with Cynthia for 2 years I feel for the first time that I am finally playing music on the piano, rather than just playing the instrument.

  • Susan Shurow

    Cynthia has been my piano teacher for over ten years. She is the epitome of what a teacher should be: smart, caring, able to explain, encourage, push just the right amount. And on top of all of this, she is fun and a delightful human being.

  • Liz Leber

    Cynthia’s teaching style has a perfect combination of knowledge, rigor, flexibility, and support. Above all, she approaches each lesson with great enthusiasm and humor. I can’t recommend her highly enough as a teacher for adult piano – I look forward to our lesson every week.


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

Typically I see where the student is musically at the first lesson. What they already know and how they already play/sing. Then I begin to find things that will help the student move forward from where they are right now. The more I get to know the student the more I can begin to know how they work, how they process information and how I can continue to help the them. We talk about music and music making in addition to playing. Even ideas of philosophy and what the student or I have read becomes part of the lesson. Music making as a expressive vehicle in the world of art. 

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

I have a masters degree in piano from The Manhattan School of Music. I work as a piano accompanist for choirs, churches, synagogues, and play for English Dances at Country Dance New York. I previously also worked as a music director for theatre shows, habing worked on more than 50 shows. I also work as a professional choral singer for churches as well as with the NY Philharmonic and American Symphony Orchestra. I sang back up vocals to BJork and Oaul McCartney. 

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

I charge $70/hour or $100 for an hour and a half. I want the pricing to be reasonable so that students can afford regular lessons. 

How did you get started teaching?

I started teaching to share my love and knowledge of music, to connect with people one on one, and to accommodate my freelance performance schedule. I enjoy helping people find their way to music and enjoying while they do.

What types of students have you worked with?

I've worked with beginners, intermediate and advanced students. My typical student is an adult who is returning to piano or voice and is at an intermediate level. I have a couple of musical theatre students who have become better at auditions and knowing and connecting to their songs. 

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

Always work with someone who values your artistic gift, musical desires and who wants to encourage you in a healthy, positive way. Work with someone you truly feel comfortable with who also is willing to help you grow as a musician. 

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

They need to think honestly about where they are as a musician and what their goals are. The goals can of course change. They also need to think about how much time and energy they want to put into their practice and if they see music lessons as a long term or short term project.