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Music is my life, and is something that I want to share with others! Because of that, I try my best to give positive experiences to all of my students. I have a byline that says "Music is Much More than Just Learning Notes." I believe that! Anyone can learn notes, fingerings, etc. What I try to do is add that "soul" element that each person has and cultivate that into meaningful music!
So, with all that said, here's what I try to instill:
A lesson is a place to share! I listen to students as well as teach. We all have something we can learn from each other!
While I want lessons to be fun and informative, I strive for complete understanding, which means any student will gain the needed mechanics with complete knowledge of why things happen and what they do to and for music. From there, I attempt to teach the "soul" of music and how emotion and spirit play a huge part in memorable music.
I don't believe in brow-beating, but I also don't want to pass over things. I don't believe practice makes perfect, but I do believe practice increases awareness!
I really try hard to help students move beyond the notes on the page. We may listen to music and describe how it makes us feel, or paint pictures both physical and mental of what the music is showing us. That is where I see the soul stepping in.
As stated before, I started on a little Magnus Organ. My grandmother told me years later that I would listen to television jingles and then try to play them on the organ!
Once we settled in our permanant home, my parents brought home a piano and I began working first with Robert Warnick, a local music teacher in the schools. He taught scales and chords. Then, Midge Bishop took me through John Thompson Grade 3, but then had to move away. Finally, I studied under Victoria Hope, lasting 13 years until I went on to college. She taught me the fine art of piano by continually challenging me to approach each piece as an artwork. She had me use the music to paint the picture. Naturally, the element of the soul came through as I put color to music.
Throughout my elementary through high school days, I immersed myself in band, choir and drama. I played piano at church starting very young. I then began trombone in the band during 4th grade. Upon entering high school, I joined choir and participated in marching band, concert band, pep band and jazz band. During those years, I picked up the rest of the brass instruments as needed by my band director. In choir, I excelled both in voice and on piano through accompaniment. Later in high school, I joined up with the drama department where we ultimately had the opportunity to write our own musical. By the time I entered college, I had mastered all the brass instruments, piano and snare drum.
During college, I participated in the marching band, wind ensemble, jazz band, pep band, trombone choir, several pit orchestras, and the symphony orchestra. I also participated in the choir.
Since that time, I have mastered the woodwinds, organ, drum set guitar and bass guitar and a little violin. I have over 25 years experience teaching lessons. They occurred off and on throughout my younger days.
Private lessons on all instruments and voices, Music Theory, Music History, Art History, Architectural History, Acting, set building, lighting and sound.
Piano, Trumpet, Trombone, French Horn, Baritone, Tuba, Voice, alto and tenor saxophone, percussion
1984-89 Bachelor of Science in K-12 Music Education
(Choral, Instrumental and General)
Ball State University, Muncie, Indiana
1991-95 Master of Divinity in Theology and Ministry
Christian Theological Seminary, Indianapolis, Indiana
5 through 114 (I haven't seen anyone older, have you?) I believe it is a good idea that a child can read the written word. Reading music occurs in similar ways.
*** Lesson Details ***
I ask lots of questions so I can get to know you better. This is also an opportunity for you ask questions of me. At the beginning, I encourage parents to attend so they can see what these lessons entail. I give you assignments to work with and then you play them for me to receive praise and constructive suggestions. I also try to challenge my students to move beyond the normal curriculum to play other things that interest them.
Depending on the instrument and the experience you have helps me determine what curriculum I want to use. Again, I cater my lessons to the needs you have and by how you like to learn!
After 3 to 6 mos, I hope you have a good working knowledge of how music works and are now moving into intermediate level work. However, each student is different and work a different speeds. My main goal is for you to feel successful whenever you leave my studio!
*** Studio Equipment ***
Baby Grand Piano, electronic Keyboard, Drum Set, Snare Drum
Don grew up in Indianapolis, and began his musical interest in church as a 9 year old. "Most everyone sang the melody during the song service, and I wanted to be different. So I started picking out parts to sing by ear." His first formal music began in the fifth grade when he took up the trumpet. From there he became involved in band and choir in high school and went on to major in music at Tennessee Temple College in Chattanooga. Later he earned a master's degree in music from Butler University, and studied voice and choral conducting at Pensacola Christian College for 2 summers.
He has traveled across most of the eastern United States as part of a college ensemble from 3 different colleges. He has performed in and directed numerous church musicals as well as performing in 2 college musicals.
Don has been a church music director, and has taught elementary, Jr. High and High School band and choir for 10 years. His own formal lessons have been in piano, trumpet, voice, and guitar, but Don studied all the band instruments in order to teach young band members to better play their instrument. He has also taught music on the college level for 15 years in courses such as voice, piano, trumpet, music history, music theory, etc.
Don is also a composer and arranger of numerous sacred choral pieces, and has written 4 Christmas cantatas, complete with drama.
Don and his wife have three sons, all of which followed his example and earned degrees in music, and are now active in performing or teaching music.
*** Lesson Details ***
I believe that classical literature is an important basis for any music lessons. But I also want students to perform music that they enjoy. So I use a balance of both. For beginners, I use the basic methods books, but within a few weeks try to bring in music that the student will enjoy.
I believe one of the most important aspects of teaching music, is to create a love of music in the student. To be successful a student must practice because his/she loves music, not because he/she is forced to prepare for a lesson.
Subjects taught- voice, piano, trumpet, trombone, baritone (euphonium), french horn, tuba, clarinet, saxophone, music theory, music history, song writing.
*** Studio Equipment ***
Piano, band instruments, recording equipment
*** Specialties ***
Sacred music, classical
I am a graduate of Indiana Wesleyan University with a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education. While at IWU, I served as the principal saxophonist of the Wind Ensemble, the leader of the Saxophone Quartet, and the principal alto saxophonist of the Jazz Ensemble. I have also performed with the Indiana Music Education Association's Intercollegiate Honor Band as the principal 2nd alto saxophonist, and have performed the back up band with the Indiana All-State Honor Choir. I have performed pieces by: Jascha Gurewick, Henri Eccles, Eugene Bozza, Robert Muczynski, Bernhard Heiden, Paul Creston, Jacques Ibert, Mozart, and David Maslanka. I currently perform at various churches and with the Indianapolis Symphonic Band as the band's baritone saxophonist.
I currently teach music at Horizon Christian School. At Horizon, I teach music to students in PreK-5th grade, direct the school choir, beginning band, middle school band, and high school band. I also have taught private lessons with saxophone and clarinet students. My students have received gold metals at the Indiana Music Education Association's Solo and Ensemble Contest.
Lessons will focus on improving tone production, technique, artist, musicianship, and confidence! Whether you wish to move up in your instrument section, improve at your instrument, have fun performing music, or all three. Private lessons are for you!
"Steven is very professional and extremely helpful. He always has a smile on and is serious about helping you phrase the music. I would highly recommend him to anyone."
"It's been really exciting so far! Jordan has been so helpful, so knowledgeable. I could not have found a better instructor and I'm getting better and better every day."
"My daughter's wedding was weeks away and I had never been able to dance a step. With Jenny's help, I came further than ever before in such short time in any subject."