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Hercules, CA Piano Lessons

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About Amber S.

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Vallejo, CA

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Award nominated singer-songwriter (wife and mom) with over 20 years experience available to teach eager students of all experience levels and ages! I structure my lessons so students learn what they want to learn, while also building a strong foundation of skills, focusing on self-expression and technique. I specialize in pop, folk, rock, blues and country styles. Let's have fun making music!

About Amber
I have been a performing singer-songwriter/graphic artist for 15+ years have written roughly 200 original songs, released several CDs and performed hundreds of shows. Music has been an important part of my life and has given me enormous amounts of joy and growth as an individual. Both of my parents are musicians and I was fortunate to have their support and guidance in addition to formal and informal training from various musicians over the years but mostly, I developed my style of playing from many hours of playing and experimenting. I am excited to have the opportunity to teach others the tools needed to start their own journey in music.

*** Lesson Details ***
I am both easy going and goal oriented. I want my students to get the most out of their lessons and enjoy every minute.

I provide the syllabus & handouts needed initially
but will may assign a book after the first few lessons. Students should have an empty three-ring binder handy or iPad in addition to owning their own guitar or piano/keyboard. I recommend supporting local music stores before going to the big chains. I can help with choosing an instrument if needed.

Within 6 months*, the student should know and be able to play major and minor chords (instruments only), understand basic music notation, time signatures, and be able to follow basic sheet music. Students are encouraged to name songs that they wish to learn to keep them excited and interested in learning.

Emphasis will be on accuracy, performance techniques and having fun!

* results will vary with each student.

*** Travel Equipment ***
Each student needs a guitar or piano/keyboard and a 3 ring binder.

*** Specialties ***
Guitar, Piano, Songwriting: Folk, Rock, Blues & Country.
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JannessaB April 25, 2012
· ·
Great Teacher

Amber was great with my son. She was very pleasant, professional and on time. Very good teacher!
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Amber S.

Amber S.

Vallejo, CA 94589
(1)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Donna D.

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Corte Madera, CA

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I take students of any age, starting with age 8, who are just beginning with their musical journey, or who are returning to the piano after many years. I teach the basics, including basic rhythms, notation, scales, arpeggios, chords, etc. as well as learning pieces. I am interested in the musical styles of the various periods of music history, and keyboard literature from the Baroque to the 21st century. I structure lessons to suit the needs and desires of each student.

Piano students can expect to learn everything about the keyboard, posture, proper use right and left hands, scales, chords, arpeggios, and fun exercises leading to good technique, rhythmic accuracy, speed and fluency. Playing beautifully, with artfulness and expressiveness will be priorities.

Repertoire might include beginning to intermediate compositions from the Baroque, Classical and Romantic eras, as well as compositions of the 20th and 21st centuries. We would sit down together and decide what pieces to ...

About Donna
I love to sing, and I have a passion for teaching students to sing well. I have sung in choruses all my life, and have been inspired by fine conductors and great composers. I am certain that music enlivens my life like nothing else, and it can do that for everyone. Whether you sing in the shower, or in the choir, or with a few friends, or in an opera, you can find your song.

Learning to play the piano, from the very beginning, or picking up where you left off in the past, will bring a spark to your life. Whether you want to play for yourself or some friends, or want to get on track to becoming a concert pianist, music will enrich your life.

My students develop an appreciation for music of the Renaissance up through the 21st century. They are willing to delve into exciting territory while learning to read music, establishing confiden
ce in their own musicianship. They discover the music within themselves, while learning the technique necessary to be the best musicians they can be.

I enjoy teaching high school, middle school, and elementary students as well as adults. I Love teaching beginners. I am trained in vocal pedagogy, music theory, music history, repertoire, performance practice and methods.

My formal education:
B.A., UC, Berkeley (Phi Beta Kappa)
M.A., Occidental College
M.S. Pepperdine University
Lifetime General Secondary Teaching Credential

Teachers and mentors:
Howard Swan, Mary Jones, Edward Lawton, Robert Commanday, Roger Wagner, Linda Anderson, Boyd Jarrell, Paul Smith.

In the last twenty years, I have enjoyed being a participant in music at the College of Marin, through choral, vocal, opera and piano classes. I currently serve as volunteer assistant to the Director of Choral Activities.

I am particularly proud of my experience as instructional aide and coach for music students with disabilities at the College of Marin, including students with developmental disabilities and autism.

Past classroom experience:
Long Beach Unified School District, Choral Music Teacher
Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District, Choral Music Teacher
Low Heywood School and King School (prep schools), Stamford, CT, Choral Music Teacher

*** Lesson Details ***
Voice students can expect to learn how to produce tone beautifully, using correct posture and breathing, and proper vowel production, rhythmic precision, pitch accuracy, carefully formed phrases, and musical and stylistic interpretation. But beyond technique is the amazing art of communicating with other people the wonders of the music. You should expect to make good progress in all of these areas in just a few weeks. I hope you will come with serious interest in developing your beautiful voice.

Repertoire might include folk songs, art songs and arias from the Renaissance, Baroque, Classical and Romantic eras, as well as compositions of the 20th and 21st centuries. Songs might be in English, or possibly in Italian, Latin, German or French, if you interested. We would sit down together and decide what dreams and goals you have, and then choose music to get you going down the path to those dreams and goals.

You can expect to have learned several new songs, and to have brought them to performance level in the first 3-6 months. If you have a goal to learn music for an audition, contest or festival, that can happen.

Piano students can expect to learn everything about the keyboard, posture, proper use right and left hands, scales, chords, arpeggios, and fun exercises leading to good technique, rhythmic accuracy, speed and fluency. Playing beautifully, with artfulness and expressiveness will be priorities.

Repertoire might include beginning to intermediate compositions from the Baroque, Classical and Romantic eras, as well as compositions of the 20th and 21st centuries. We would sit down together and decide what pieces to choose which would help you get on a path to your musical dreams and goals, and what would be appropriate for your age and development as a musician.

You can expect to be playing pieces with 2 hands within a few weeks, and perhaps a melody with chords, if you are a beginner. Degree of difficulty will depend upon your age, experience and development, but even very simple songs can be played musically, with grace.

Of utmost importance to me is that every student learn to read music, and develop an understanding of music fundamentals. The level of sophistication will depend upon age and experience, but learning good musicianship is essential. At the same time, opportunities for creativity to develop through improvisation could be on the horizon for you. It is important to me that you want to learn and and want to become the best you can be.

*** Studio Equipment ***
I have a piano and computer with Finale at my home. I provide music and practice sheets, etc.

*** Specialties ***
For voice, I teach classical style, including posture, breathing, tone production, vowel production, phrasing, diction, appropriate style and performance practice, and music reading. Materials I use include everything from folk songs to arias, and 16th century to contemporary compositions, in English, Italian, Latin, French and German. Voice is my primary interest. I am also competent to teach beginning theory, and beginning piano, both classical and standard popular, including improvisation from charts (melody, chords).
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Reviews
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Kylie July 19, 2017
· Singing · In home
I really enjoyed working with Mrs.Donna she
was a very sweet, patient and skilled teacher.
She taught me the skills of becoming a more well
developed singer and I had so much fun learning with her.
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Lori May 9, 2017
· Singing · In studio
My first and second lessons were wonderful and I am inspired by Donna's dedication, knowledge and patience. I feel that I can learn to build on these lessons and sing with confidence.
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Lori G. May 1, 2017
· Singing · In studio
First lesson: I feel encouraged and inspired!
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Donna D.

Donna D.

Corte Madera, CA 94925
(12)
starting at
$40 / 30-min

About Mack R.

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Oakland, CA
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I have been teaching piano for 35 years. I have had several student who started with me as beginners and advanced to playing in the jazz band in school. Over the years I have developed a unique technique for getting students started as beginners.

About Mack
I have a BS in music education received at Lehman College, Bronx, NY. I am a professional musician/ composer/ arranger.I received my teaching credentials at SFSU and have been a General music teacher as well as a, band teacher. I have studied trumpet with Classical ( Wilmer Wise)and Jazz musician (Bill Hardman) and big band arranging with Frank Foster( saxophonist and arranger with Count Basie Band). At present I am retired and teaching privately.

I have been teaching music for over 50 years as well as being a professional musician/ composer and arranger. I not only know my fundamentals inside and out, but also I know many tricks of the trade. Over the years I have developed special teaching techniques that enable students to make sense out of music and progress rapidly on their instruments.I love playing music and aim at stirring that
same kind of excitement abut music in my students.

To each lesson I bring a unique mix, encouraging the student to pursue excellence and also have fun. I am well qualified to teach: woodwinds( oboe, flute, clarinet, all saxophones) brass(french horn, trumpet, trombone, tuba), and piano.

*** Lesson Details ***
I make music interesting to learn. I encourage students to practice daily so they can improve. The more they improve the more fun they can have with music not only alone, but with others.

I am very patient with my students especially with beginners. I know that for them it is like learning a new language. Once they begin to increase their musical vocabulary, they will enjoy what they can do with music.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Seating for parents, basement studio, piano, drum set

*** Travel Equipment ***
Students should provide their own instruments.
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Reviews
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Kate September 5, 2017
· Clarinet · In studio
First clarinet lesson today with Mack Ruck. I'm a rank beginner, which is why I chose Mack. I figured that a band and orchestra teacher would have encountered many of me over his career in the schools, and know how to work with different styles of learning. He also would be able to explain stuff simply from the very base level. I was really right! I came out of the lesson knowing how to read and play middle C through A (not very well, but that's why we practice). I learned ways to make the note actually sound, what you can do to screw up the sound or make it clear and on-key. Not too shabby for starting the half hour without being able to make a sound on the clarinet. So he's a great teacher. He's also the most patient guy on earth, with nerves of iron!
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Emiliano A. August 28, 2017
· Clarinet · In studio
Mack is an amazing teacher! He is kind but gently moved my son along in his musical skills.
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Evan X. July 23, 2017
· Saxophone · In studio
Mack was awesome !
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Mack R.

Mack R.

Oakland, CA 94607
(23)
starting at
$25 / 30-min

About Ken W.

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Concord, CA
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Ken has a basic understanding of playing the piano and has taught many beginners.

About Ken
At age 12 Ken picked up a guitar and fell in love with the instrument. He began with an obsession with Metallica and related bands that later evolved to a passion for classical and jazz music, music theory.

From 2008 -2010 completed the music program at Diablo Valley College in June of 2010, which includes extensive coursework in Music theory, Piano and Guitar. Since 2011 Ken has been a Jazz Guitar Performance Major at Cal State East Bay. There he has studied Classical and jazz Guitar performance with world class musicians.

"Music has many different levels and the beautiful thing is there is a place for everybody. I have spent a lot of time throughout my music career going “back to basics” in order to become a better musician. We are all capable of becoming great musicians and just because someone can play faster than you doesn't n
ecessarily make them better. Music provides everything from healing power to just plain fun for the human spirit so I always encourage students to go at there own pace and work within their abilities."

*** Lesson Details ***
20+ years experience as a musician and teacher Ken has taken self taught route and the lessons route. "I believe 100% that being taught by someone who has sufficient experience really provides the roadway for a solid foundation whether you are planning on being a pro, just for fun and all levels in between. The combination of self-discipline and a good teacher are a must to have as a musician."

Amongst many other approaches of teaching music, I try to instill the 3 most lacking areas most musicians usually have to begin.

1. Sight reading: Unfortunately most common with guitarists! Tablature is a somewhat useful way to start but reading music will open many doors and opportunities for any musician

2. Collaboration: A teacher provides one way of collaboration as well as a band or an ensemble at school or in the community.

3. Improvisation: I provide a music theory background and I have a method plan for chord progressions, and help with learning the entire guitar.

I take step-by-step approaches towards giving a student encouragement and instilling music appreciation. I am very organized so every lesson will be documented and we will work on specific areas of fundamental development. Most of all have fun! That what gets us playing music in the first place!

I look Forward to meeting you!

*** Studio Equipment ***
Lesson room, music stands, benches, amps, two pianos, computer area for recording,

*** Travel Equipment ***
Their own instrument and any necessary cables, amps etc. for them I will provide my own

*** Specialties ***
I mostly specialize in jazz and classical guitar and have taught blues, rock, metal and Latin American guitar. All ages and all levels. I also teach western music theory (classical and jazz) from the baroque period to modern day. I teach beginning piano which consists of the basic fundamentals (i.e. scales, posture hand positions, etudes and beginning repertoire)
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Reviews
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Rahul S. November 6, 2014
· Classical Guitar · In home
Ken is an awesome teacher and an great person. He teaches my 5 year daughter and she loves his lessons and his jovial approach. Within 4 weeks, she has picked up a lot of things and is improving day by day. He is patient as you ought to be with the kids and yet persistent enough to stick to the task.

I am really looking forward to them picking up songs in the coming lessons. I will recommend him anytime and completely vouch for his credentials and ability as an excellent guitarist as well as teacher.
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Jon C. August 18, 2014
· Classical Guitar · In studio
Ken is a talented musician, nice person, and a fantastic teacher. I wanted to branch out into classical guitar after many years of playing other styles. Ken was good at adapting to my background and goals.
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Francesca G. June 30, 2014
· Guitar · In studio
Ken W. is an awesome teacher, my daughter loves her lessons with Ken, he is very patient kind and makes my daughter feel very comfortable. He also is very positive inspiring. I plan on keeping Ken as my daughters instructor for a very very long time
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Ken W.

Ken W.

Concord, CA 94521
(9)
starting at
$45 / 30-min

About Astrid C.

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Martinez, CA

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I can teach beginner to intermediate piano, which would include scales, proper fingering techniques, teaching to play with both hands together and even into modes and Jazz chords and jazz theory. I believe my students need to learn music theory along with piano, other wise they don't understand what they are doing. Plus it will help them in the future with music.

About Astrid
Teaching is my passion. Over the last few years I have worked with some amazing students of all ages. My youngest student was 2 years old and my oldest student is in her 70's and I absolutley love that! I have experience working with children with learning difficulties and students who get frustrated really easily. I love helping students fall in love with music, like I did growing up with my music teachers and professors. I am passionate about music and passionate about my students learning and excelling in their craft. I enjoy working with all ages and all types of music abilities. As a teacher I really push my students to understand music itself and spend time going over theory, which is super important. I would love to help you or your child grow and learn in their music abilities and hope to hear from you soon!
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Rafael O. February 17, 2016
· Singing · In studio
Awesome instructional singing tutor, we'll keep in touch with her on my son's needs.
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Rafael O. February 17, 2016
· Singing · In studio
Awesome instructional singing tutor, we'll keep in touch with her on my son's needs.
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Rafael O. February 17, 2016
· Singing · In studio
Awesome instructional singing tutor, we'll ne in touch qith her on my aom's needs.
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Astrid C.

Astrid C.

Pinole, CA 94564
(9)
starting at
$30 / 30-min
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About Warinya R.

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San Francisco, CA
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I started playing piano since I was 4 years old, this has led me to the love of piano. In session with me, you can expect to be able to learn how to read notes, and use the techniques to play your favorite songs beautifully.

About Warinya
Hello!
I am a recent graduate from University of California, Berkeley, majoring in Legal Studies and Political Economy minor. Teaching has always been my favorite thing to do! It feels great to share knowledge, techniques and skills on a particular subject and even better when the students can use it for their school and/or career advancement.
I started teaching in 2008 in Bangkok, Thailand. My first job was an English tutor for Thai students (part time) while attending the final year of high school. After I have moved to the US, whenever I have time, I always accept teaching jobs, mostly referrals from my friends or friend of friends.
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Belen December 24, 2016
· Piano ·
Warinya is a great piano teacher for my three kids (ages 5 to 8) They love her and enjoy her classes. She has developed a good incentive system that keeps the kids focused and motivated. All are progressing at their own pace. I'm very happy.
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Michael K. December 19, 2016
· Thai · In studio
Couldn't have asked for more, much more that I thought I would get.
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James November 30, 2016
· Piano · In studio
Great first lesson. I'm looking forward to the next one.
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Warinya R.

Warinya R.

San Francisco, CA 94118
(15)
starting at
$40 / 30-min

About Erica G.

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Sausalito, CA

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I've been teaching piano for 3 years and my students have gone on to learn the classics as well as great pop songs. Within the first few lessons, you'll be able to learn one of your favorite songs and as time goes on you'll be able to master more of the classics. I specialize in contemporary music but am flexible to work with what you're passionate about learning most. I love working with students of all ages and I can't wait to meet you!

About Erica
I'm a professional singer, songwriter, and recording artist originally from Tanzania in East Africa. I love empowering students to discover the joy of music in every lesson.

I've studied music theory, voice, and piano at the college level, and I'm also a self taught guitar player.

For voice students, your vocal skills are like a muscle. I help you improve your vocal technique a little bit each week while you're growing your confidence and self expression as a singer.

For piano, I began learning piano as an adult (5 years ago) and I understand the challenge of learning the instrument from scratch. I can teach students to read music and play contemporary songs of your choice.

As a singer and songwriter, I've worked with famous artists in East Africa. You can learn more about my music at http://EricaLulakwa.com. I love to mentor st
udents who want to become powerful songwriters and get into performing and recording.

I look forward to working with you to grow into a better musician!
...
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Cole October 6, 2017
· Acoustic Guitar · In home
I gauge success on how well my kid responds. Instead of once a week lessons he now wants twice. Somehow Erica connected with him and he now wants to practice his guitar. Thank you!
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Sean A. September 14, 2017
· Piano · In home
Super! Erica was great. We are looking forward to working with her.
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Martina B. August 26, 2017
· · In home
Erica has been amazing. She has been teaching my son, 7 year old and his friend a 6 year old guitar lessons. Erica is very patience and works well with kids. My son is always looking forward to his lessons. I highly recommend Erica.
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Erica G.

Erica G.

Sausalito, CA 94965
(3)
starting at
$25 / 30-min

About Charlotte L.

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San Francisco, CA

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Hi! First, I will ask for your experience not only with piano but with music. We will work on posture, playing technique and reading. Because of my tutelage, my default material for beginners is Suzuki Book 1 which you can either purchase yourself or I can bring one for you. If you have other music material that you would like to work on, I am happy to use that instead. Then I will assign you homework which you will need to practice on your own in preparation for then next lesson.

About Charlotte
Hi! I am currently a student at University of San Francisco studying Biology and Neuroscience. I began studying piano when I was 4 through the Suzuki method and started teaching when I moved to San Francisco to start school. I am dedicated to the Suzuki method and believe in it. When I take on a student, I want them to accomplish their goals but will require that they practice and prepare for each lesson. With practicing done, we can work on and hone your skill together and (I hope) develop a love for music and an instrument I hold very dear.
...
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Charlotte L.

Charlotte L.

San Francisco, CA 94117
starting at
$25 / 30-min

About Sherman N.

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Mill Valley, CA

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I expected that you will put in effort. I hope that you all can learn to enjoy and appreciate the learning process. Mostly lessons consists of learning the keys of the piano, scales, and beginning piano pieces.

About Sherman
I'm a high school student and musician. I've played piano for about 13 years and this is my best opportunity to help other young aspiring musicians. I passed the Grade 8 Piano Exam for ABRSM (Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music) and I'm currently prepping for the Diploma test for ABRSM. I am planning to take music as a major in college and possibly become a music teacher in the future.

I will do my best to help the young kids to find their love and passion and music and help them stay committed to it.
...
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Sherman N.

Sherman N.

Mill Valley, CA 94941
starting at
$15 / 30-min

About Calvin L.

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Union City, CA

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Dear parents and students,

I began playing the piano at the age of five. In 2008, I completed Music Teachers' Association of California Keyboard test and had the Certificate of Merit Advanced Level. I continued my training with Dr. Gwendolyn Mok and Dr. Sultanov at San Jose State School of Music and Dance, where I received my Bachelor's Degree of Music Education.

Not only I had high quality piano lessons with professional doctors in music, I took copious amount of music classes to explore my music skills. Classes are including Piano Pedagogy, Piano Accompaniment, Recital Preparation and Interpretive, Piano sight-reading, Beethoven's literature, and High school choir. I have performed as soloist and chamber musician in various locations which included performing in concerts, nursing home, and school functions.

I am bilingual in Cantonese and English and teaching at Fremont/Union City area.

About Calvin
Dear parents and students,

I began playing the piano at the age of five. In 2008, I completed Music Teachers' Association of California Keyboard test and had the Certificate of Merit Advanced Level. I continued my training with Dr. Gwendolyn Mok and Dr. Sultanov at San Jose State School of Music and Dance, where I received my Bachelor's Degree of Music Education.

Not only I had high-quality piano lessons with professional doctors in music, I took a copious amount of music classes to explore my music skills. Classes are including Piano Pedagogy, Piano Accompaniment, Recital Preparation and Interpretive, Piano sight-reading, Beethoven's literature, and High school choir. I have performed as soloist and chamber musician in various locations which included performing in concerts, nursing home, and school functions.

I am bilingual i
n Cantonese and English and teaching at Fremont/Union City area.
...
Reviews
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Serena September 15, 2017
· Classical Piano · In studio
From the way I sit to my hand position, Mr. Calvin has patiently guiding me to the right direction. My piano playing has been gradually improving in the last few months- thanks to Mr. Calvin.
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Sam August 26, 2017
· Classical Piano · In studio
Mr. Lo is great.
He makes my daughter play through a piece slowly without mistake first.
And then he will sing along and she can play in a steady tempo.

My daughter has a great time with Mr. Lo for three years already, and we are looking forward for another three years with him.
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Diane August 22, 2017
· Classical Piano · In studio
In the beginning I choose Mr. Calvin because he is really close to my home.
And it turns out that he is really nice and clear with his instruction.
My son enjoys learning piano with Mr. Calvin.
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Calvin L.

Calvin L.

Union City, CA 94587
(4)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

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Free Piano Lessons with an Expert Teacher

Learn how to play the piano in these video tutorials from a professional piano teacher!

Have you always wanted to play the piano? We’re here to help! Get started with these 20 video tutorials hosted by San Diego, CA piano teacher Jordan M, one of our expert instructors with TakeLessons.com. In this free video series, you’ll get an introduction to the instrument and learn a few easy exercises to get you reading music and understanding rhythm!

Video #1:
Intro to the Piano

Intro to the Piano: Learn about the parts of the piano and how to find the all-important Middle C.

Video #2:
Piano Basics

Learn about proper posture, hand placement, and other beginner essentials.

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Reading Piano Notes

Learn about the treble and bass clefs, and tips for remembering the notes on the piano.

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Time and Key Signatures

Learn what all those sharps and flats really mean, and how to decode your music.

Video #5:
Understanding Rhythm

Follow along to master quarter notes, quarter rests, and half rests.

 

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Tips for Beginners: Piano Hand Coordination Exercises

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Tips for Beginners: Piano Hand Coordination Exercises
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4 Ways Piano Competitions Make You a Better Player
What do the best piano players have in common? Most of them have participated in piano competitions, exams (like the ABRSM), or recitals. Here, St. Augustine, FL teacher Heather L. explores the benefits of piano competitions...   Competition of all kinds gets a bad rap nowadays. In dozens of counties and hundreds of schools across the country, competitiveness is under fire. Students and young athletes are being told that participation and team building are all that counts, and therefo
Guide to Proper Piano Hand Position [Infographic]
  Learning the proper piano hand position is essential for both beginner and accomplished piano players. Below piano teacher, Ryan C. shares some tips and exercises on how to perfect your piano hand placement... If you were to sit down at a piano right now and throw your hands on the keys, how would they land? Would your fingers be curved or flat? How would your wrist look relative to your arm? Would you feel any tension in your shoulder or would you feel relaxed? Consideration
How Much Are Piano Lessons? You Might be Surprised...
Interested in piano lessons? You've come to the right place! The benefits of working with a private music teacher are clear: you get one-on-one guidance from a professional, a customized lesson plan, and someone to hold you accountable. And as most musicians will tell you, the investment you make in your training is completely worth it when you start seeing improvements. But for the more budget-conscious beginners, you might still be wondering: how much are piano lessons on average?

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