Beginning lessons are focused on music-reading skills. Intermediate and advanced lessons are rooted in the classical Western tradition, drawing music from composers such as Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, and Debussy.
Reading fundamentals (30 min. lessons)
Our music adventure begins by exploring the keyboard, listening to the sounds a piano makes, and reading basic pitch and rhythmic patterns. We learn how to control the fingers evenly and how to play through the finger tips to create a controlled sound. We ultimately work in five-finger patterns that students can transpose to other areas in the keyboard.
Elementary musicianship (30 min. lessons)
Students become fluent in basic reading skills, expand their range out of the five-finger position, and learn how to maneuver more smoothly across the keyboard. We gradually move out of method books and play more “real repertoire.” Pentascales introduce students to music theory: they act as building blocks for understanding scales and chords.
intermediate i (45 min. lessons)
Students continue to develop reading skills. We expand our technical vocabulary to include scales, triads, and arpeggios. Students also play a variety of music including Baroque minuets, Classical sonatinas, and diverse contemporary music. These students generally participate in more piano exams, recitals, and contests throughout the year.
intermediate ii (45 min. lessons)
Students refine reading skills, develop faster technique, and play with musicianship. We work on easier music by master composers like Bach, Haydn, and Chopin. Students also listen to how different music and styles create different moods. We tackle more music theory to enhance reading and listening skills. In this level, we focus on tonal form and analysis.
intermediate iii (60 min. lessons)
Students find proficiency in reading music, develop advanced technique, and play with greater musicianship. We work on performing music in a way that clearly communicates an emotional or musical aesthetic. We also dig deeper into tonal harmony, voice-leading, and form. This level acts as a stepping stone between the dependent student to the independent musician.
advanced musicanship (60 min. lessons)
Students develop virtuosic technique, and perform music with artistry. We ultimately prepare five pieces totaling 15-45 minutes of music: a prelude and fugue by J.S. Bach, a Sonata by Beethoven or Mozart, and three substantial works from the 19th, 20th, and 21st century. This music becomes material for solo recitals, auditions for colleges/universities, and competitions.