Academy Of The Performing Arts
I can arrange nearly any type of instruction for an interested student. We have a modern facility, with a small recital studio, and plenty of parking just outside the door. We have a brand new Yamaha grand and a Yamaha U-1, plus two keyboards on the premises. Lessons are offered seven days a week and a student's scheduling can always be accomodated. We offer instruction for all ages and levels, from infants to senior citizens.
I coordinate instruction for several teachers, and teach about 35 students myself. I have been teaching for 55 years--yes, 55 (I started quite young). My teachers have included the well-known pianists Earl Wild and Lamar Crowson, fortepianist Stanley Hoogland, and harpsichordist John Gibbons. I have a B.A. in Music History from Penn State, an M.M. in Early Music Performance from New England Conservatory, licentiate diplomas in Vocal Performance, Piano Accompaniment and Early Dance from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, and a Post-graduate certificate in Fortepiano from the Royal Conservatory in The Hague.
I have taught in the U.S., in South Africa, in England, and in The Netherlands. Everyone receives a quality music education, which can be developed to amateur enjoyment in later life or professional work, according to the interest of the student. Reading music notation, technique, and ear-training are all developed from the very beginning.
Frequently asked questions
What is your typical process for working with a new student?
They must demonstrate what they know. I am observing their hands, their fingering, and their rhythm, especially. I will observe strengths and/or weaknesses. Many weaknesses can be attributed to early training, or the students response to earlier training. Many aspects can be taught, for the first time, or re-trained, if necessary. Beginners are all taught in the same way. The advantage to working with an adult beginner is that I can explain pedagogically what is taking place, as well as presenting the material. Adults make the best progress by working with the same material I give to the children. It does not help them to skip stages for quicker results. In all cases I am observing the development of the hands, the intelligence of the hands, and the reaction time to notational stimulus and multi-tasking. One student progresses faster or slower, depending on what I observe from them.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
I have been an active musician my entire life, from the age of seven-and-a-half. I began teaching at age 10. I had my first paying musician job at age 13. B.A. Music History from Penn State, M.M. in Early Music Performance from New England Conservatory, Licentiate Diplomas in Vocal Performance, Piano Accompaniment, and Early Dance from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in Amsterdam, Post-graduate certificate in Fortepiano from the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. I have also studied at the University of Cape Town and Sweelinck Conservatory in Amsterdam.
Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.
$55 per 60-minute lesson
$41.25 per 45-min lesson
$27.50 per 30-min lesson
How did you get started teaching?
Started at age 10--this was arranged by my piano teacher, who had specific requirements for earning the Girl Scout Badge in Music. At age 14 I taught neighbor children in the summer for fun and produced a musical for them. At age 17 I taught neighbor children on a weekly basis, as well as fellow Penn State students. At age 21 I was substitute teaching for one of the professors at the University of Cape Town, and I worked for two years teaching private music lessons (full-time) at schools in the Cape Town area.
What types of students have you worked with?
I have taught private music to children as young as two years of age, senior citizens in their seventies and eighties, children from wealthy families in Amsterdam, and Cape Coloured children in apartheid South Africa. Some walked barefoot to school--even in the snow.
Describe a recent event you are fond of.
I was especially proud of one of my vocal students, a boy of ten, who was chosen to sing the national anthem at a Spikes baseball game. It was very beautiful!
What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?
I would advise them to study with me. I don't sugar-coat anything for adult students. If they want to learn, we will find a way. I am very good with children, as well. I am very nice to them--but they will get all the training they need.
What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?
I do not know how to answer this question. Lessons are expensive. One wants to get his money's worth. I can promise that.