“When you teach a student in a way that embodies a true sense of who they are and reflects the life, energy and dreams that pulse within, you are creating a musician whose very soul is nurtured.”
This is an opportunity to truly and personally state what I believe are the most important aspects of teaching, learning, building trust and relationships in music education.
“To teach is a gift from one generation to another. We are all playing a part in a cultural exchange and we create our own musical legacy. I strive to pass on to you what I have learnt and am still learning through my teaching and my own discoveries as an active performing musician. I want you to walk away feeling inspired, empowered and excited about your development and take great pride in what you do. Enjoy and share your skills and creativity.”
Dear Music Student,
You can learn anything you want, the way you like it. There is no right and wrong way of doing things. There are no hard and fast rules. Method books and the new ‘latest’ and ‘greatest’ ways of teaching are a way in, not the only way. Trust yourself to learn, open yourself up to explore and discover and feel good about it.
You have the ability to succeed and more often than not, will succeed on a personal level more than a musical one. My role is to guide you through your learning regardless of your level or age, to encourage and to motivate, to inspire and to help you discover amazing things for yourself, to create an environment where there are many ‘a-ha’ moments. You will say ‘I can’ often. That is a good thing. We will not only learn new things, but we will also laugh and talk, share and connect, this is only natural.
I do set high expectations and often these are much higher than you believe you can achieve. Whether or not you actually do achieve the expectations set out is not the point of teaching for me. The point for me is what you discover about yourself as you learn music. You are on a deeply personal journey from one note of discovery to the next, the highs and the lows, the thrills and the emotional spills – this is how you truly discover your creative voice, your humanity and how you ‘fit’ into your world. You will also realize through the learning process that there is plenty of support, a guide, a way through and all you have to do is seize it, use it and ask for help when you need it. There will be a time when you won’t need me anymore. That’s fine, that’s my role – to eventually not be needed. I celebrate that.
I teach music not because I expect you to become a professional musician or study it at university, not because I expect you to play all your life, not so you can have a hobby or relax or have fun with your friends, but because you will feel human, you will recognize beauty when you see or hear it, you will have a sense of being a cultural caretaker, you will experience more understanding, more love, more compassion, more gentleness and more purpose through music.
Because music is so personal, you will feel vulnerable at times, feel fear and think I can’t. This happens to everyone. You will learn how to use your brain, your body, your ear and your heart at the same time. You will look inside yourself to find meaning in the notes you play and I can’t teach you how to feel your heart, but I can show you mine. I create a safe and enthusiastic environment for you to explore, to feel safe and to feel creative.
Finding your inner world allows music to grow.
Yours in music,