Registration for Spring Group Classes opens December 1
I can’t remember a time when I didn’t love music. From the very beginning, our home was filled with all sorts of music—Irish fiddle, mariachi, Bach, Beethoven, and Gregorian chant. I learned early about the beauty of this universal language. When I was five years old, I sat, mesmerized, through an entire performance of Mozart’s Magic Flute. The gorgeous costumes, wonderful voices, and brilliant orchestra enchanted me. I knew, then, that I wanted to “make music.”
During my early years, I participated in music/movement programs and started piano and ballet lessons when I turned six. During middle school, I added modern dance and played flute, saxophone, and vibes in the school band. In high school and college, I narrowed my studies to flute and piano. Along the way, there have been symphonic and jazz bands, choral accompaniment, flute choirs, and piano ensembles—all of which gave me a rich background in musical genres and an appreciation for the power of group performance.
Several of those experiences and the teachers who led them have had a tremendous impact on my own teaching. The first was my eleven years as a camper and counselor at the Plymouth State Piano Monster Festival, a duet and ensemble camp. Led by Dr. Carleen Graff, an internationally recognized expert in piano pedagogy, I had the opportunity to work with composers, conductors, and talented campers. We learned creative ways for maturing students to stay involved.
Then, between my junior and senior years of high school, I had the privilege of playing flute and piccolo with the New England Ambassadors of Music on a European tour. I’ll never forget the welcomes we received in village churches and town squares. Community performance can be vital and rewarding for students. Finally, in my senior year of college, during Jonathan Santore’s Global Jazz course, I renewed my passion for music cultures and the artists who make them. I believe we must, as teachers, help students appreciate the different musical voices and rhythms in our world.
During the past thirteen years, I’ve truly enjoyed teaching piano and flute students. Special courses and workshops have prepared me to work with students of all ages, their learning styles and interests. Training in Suzuki methodology has given me additional strategies for helping students develop strong foundation skills with the help of their parents. Together, we can help each child share his or her inner music. Seeing wonder in students’ eyes when they make new connections and succeed in their learning is especially rewarding for me. Their recognition and pride in their own accomplishments is priceless.
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