Orinda Music Lessons

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Music Lesson Reviews from Students

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Popular Music Teachers near Orinda

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About Mikaela H.

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San Francisco, CA

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About Mikaela
Indiana University, Jacobs School of Music, Jacobs Scholar
Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance - 2007-2011

I work with each student to create a personalized experience that will best suit your individual goals and needs. My teaching focuses on providing each student with a solid foundation of technique which is suited to children and adults who wish to play violin as a hobby, but also to those who wish to pursue violin at a professional level. This technique will not only allow you to create the beautiful violin sound you have always dreamed of, but will also do so in a way that is healthy for your body in the long term.

In lessons my students develop skills not only in violin playing, but also in musicianship, music reading, ear training, music theory, leadership, collaboration, and self-discipline.

For beginning student
s, I teach using the suzuki books, however I draw from my many years of experience as a successful performer to supplement this system for long term success. For students who have surpassed the Suzuki level, I teach Russian School technique. My own training is largely Russian school, influenced by Heifetz and modern European tradition.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I provide music books for compensation, though I expect students to rent or purchase their own instruments.
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Reviews
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Margot B. May 17, 2016
· Violin · In home
Our daughter had her first lesson yesterday and loved it and Mikaela. She said it was the best day ever and can't wait for her next lesson next week! Mikaela obviously has experience teaching children and make our daughter feel at ease and comfortable. Most of the first lesson seemed to be focused on proper instrument and handling, which makes sense. It can take years to undo poor posture and position if not begun correctly. Mikaela explained what she was doing and why, and made sure our daughter understood everything as she went along. Thank you for a first great experience!
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Daniel S. August 3, 2014
· Violin · In home
Mikaela is not only an excellent musician but an outstanding music teacher, a rare combination. I have been taking violin lessons from her for quite some time now, and I am amazed at how much of a difference she has made in my efforts to pick up the instrument as a total beginner.

She has great observational abilities to immediately notice errors in form or movement, all the while maintaining calm and complete patience. She also has gift for suggesting corrections with analogy and imagery that has been very helpful in my experience.

I would highly recommend her.
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Piotr K. July 26, 2014
· Violin · In home
From the very first lesson, I was really impressed by how much insight Mikaela could provide for even the (seemingly) simplest phrase or section. She has very deep knowledge about music in general and the mechanics of violin playing in particular.

Every time I perform something for her, she points out each of the hundred things I'm doing wrong. More importantly, she also explains exactly why whatever I'm doing is not working and what steps are necessary to fix it. Her advice is very specific and actionable, and whenever I follow it I notice an improvement.

Despite having my playing constantly destroyed by her remarks, I don't feel discouraged. On the contrary, every lesson leaves me energized and inspired to keep practicing.
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Mikaela H.

Mikaela H.

San Francisco, CA 94117
(3)
starting at
$45 / 30-min

About Marc D.

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Petaluma, CA

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About Marc
I've been playing music since I was 14 years old. I studied classical guitar at State University in Buffalo, NY. and also studied guitar at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. I love just about every style of music. I mostly play Celtic, Bluegrass, American traditional, jazz, and classical. I also love to improvise.
My goal is to get my students results so they feel that they are really making progress. I do this by incorporating practice exercises, ear training and some music theory.
Music theory and reading music can be intimidating for beginning students. So I like to get you playing first and add theory a little at a time so you can better understand it through experience and it makes learning more fun.

*** Studio Equipment ***
The studio has a piano, acoustic guitars,mandolins and other instruments.Students receive sh
eet music and written materials.

*** Travel Equipment ***
Sheet music and other written materials.

*** Specialties ***
I play a lot of Irish fiddle tunes and also know a lot of American Folk styles,popular music and some jazz. I play some classical pieces on the mandolin and some bluegrass. I consider improvisation one of my strengths.
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Reviews
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Avery B. January 26, 2016
· Violin · In studio
It was really good information and I had a lot of fun.
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Annie B. March 3, 2015
· Fiddle · In studio
I have been taking fiddle/violin lessons from Marc for a few months now, and it has been a great experience. He is very patient and keeps things fun by helping me learn pieces that I am interested in learning to play. I would highly recommend him for any instrument you are wanting to learn.
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David S. February 19, 2015
· Mandolin · In studio
I have been playing the mandolin for about four years now and have had several different teachers, of which Marc is by far the best one I have had. I wish I had started with him. Marc is very patient and works with you to bring out your best effort. He challenges me with interesting music to play, helps me to understand the piece and shows me different ways to finger the notes. When I started with Marc two months ago I was playing hornpipes and dances and now I've moved up to Bach and Vivaldi. Marc is also an accomplished instrument maker.
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Marc D.

Marc D.

Petaluma, CA 94954
(7)
starting at
$39 / 30-min

About Jason J.

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Castro Valley, CA

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About Jason
I have been playing guitar for over 25 years and teaching for over 15. I have experience playing live including, classical guitar, acoustic popular songs, rock and jazz groups and most notably with The West Coast's Premier Tribute to Pearl Jam, Vitalogy. I have two music degrees (BA music and AA-O in Guitar Performance) and a California Music teaching credential which all has given me the training to assess your progress and differentiate your instruction based on YOUR specific needs as a student as well as your musical goals.
There are a couple of books I may suggest for you depending on the situation and of course I require you to provide your own guitar as you will need it to practice what you learn in each lesson.

*** Specialties ***
I take a balanced approach to teaching that includes equal attention to theory and technique w
hile helping a student accomplish his/her musical goals. I am comfortable teaching the following genres: rock, blues, classical, reggae, jazz and country
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Jason J.

Jason J.

Castro Valley, CA 94546
starting at
$40 / 30-min

About Kathleen B.

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Menlo Park, CA
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About Kathleen
I am a classically-trained opera singer. I have a Bachelors and Masters in Vocal Performance and Vocal Pedagogy (teaching), and have sung professionally in the U.S. and Europe. I have sung Opera, Operetta, Musical Theater and Concerts, as well as choral and cantorial singing. I have been a finalist and winner of vocal competitions in both the United States and Europe.
I have been teaching voice since 1980, and have worked with students of all ages, from 14 to 75. I have also directed and designed for musical theater and opera. Because I love singing, I want to bring that to my students as well, whatever kind of music they want to sing.

In addition to music, I also teach English (ESL), Accent Reduction, German, U.S. & World History. I have my CBEST Credential And ESL Certification. I do private tutoring and teach clas
ses.

*** Lesson Details ***
I believe that learning how to breath is the key to good singing. After 3 months of study, my students will have learned how to breathe, which improves both their singing and speaking voices. Good breathing is the key to good singing and a healthy voice. With a healthy, well-trained voice, my students can be valuable members of any vocal ensemble, and enjoy their singing, For solo singing, good breathing is most important, whether singing opera, musical theater or pop music, because it gives a beautiful, full quality to the voice.
I always begin a lesson with warm-up exercises, to check breathing and vocal placement. Once the (vocal) engine is warmed-up, then we begin to sing. I try to get to know my students, so that, together, we can choose music that will enable them to reach their goals and is both fun and challenging for them to sing.

In addition to music, I also teach English (ESL), Accent Reduction, German, U.S. & World History. I have my CBEST Credential And ESL Certification. I do private tutoring and teach classes.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Separate studio with Piano
I have a MacBook Pro laptop computer + stereo speakers, to provide recorded accompaniment, when necessary.

*** Travel Equipment ***
If a student wishes to have on-site lessons, I require that a piano or keyboard be available for the lessons.
I usually travel with my MacBook Pro laptop computer & stereo speakers, to provide recorded accompaniment, when necessary.

*** Specialties ***
I am a trained opera/oratorio singer, but I teach Broadway, Pop, choral and classical singers.

I have had many international students who didn't speak English well. Music is an international language that helps me communicate with all of my students!
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Reviews
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Elizabeth (Betsy) June 3, 2016
· Singing · In studio
I took away a whole array of new strategies and techniques to help preserve my voice and to increase my range. What a surprise- I had no idea I could sing so high!! Kathleen is a wonderful teacher and a really super lady. I'll be back for more lessons in the fall.
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Nadia N. August 10, 2015
· Singing · In studio
My daughter is really enjoying her voice lessons. Kathleen is a talented, caring teacher and knows how to make the process effective and fun for my daughter. My daughter loves being able to choose the songs she wants to learn, and this collaborative process keeps her quite interested and inspired.
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Leah Y. L. May 6, 2014
· Singing ·
Excellent Voice Teacher

Mrs. B is a wonderful and dedicated teacher who focuses diligently during class sessions. She thoroughly explains terms and technique and is friendly and sociable. Her extensive knowledge of languages comes extremely useful in Italian arias and other folk songs as to explain the meanings of words and to convey motion. Her classes are enjoyable and fun, while still being comprehensively academic.
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Kathleen B.

Kathleen B.

Menlo Park, CA 94025
(5)
starting at
$40 / 30-min

About Donna D.

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Corte Madera, CA

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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
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About Judy G.

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San Mateo, CA
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About Judy
Greetings!
Thanks for checking out my lessons. My name is Judy aka Groovy Judy. I'm a guitarist, singer, songwriter and performer. I've been playing guitar for 35+ and teaching private and group lessons for 12 years. I also teach ukulele, beginning electric bass and songwriting. ***Please note - I'm located on the Peninsula, so the areas I serve are: Millbrae, Burlingame, Hillsborough, San Mateo, Belmont, San Carlos, Redwood City, Atherton & Menlo Park.***

I work with a lot of kids (as well as adults) and beginners. I'm extremely patient, and I enjoy getting brand new students up and running with proper techniques and good habits. My teaching style/philosophy is to get my students playing as soon as possible in an easy and fun way. I focus on basics such as tuning, rhythm, proper pick technique, strumming, reading guitar tab and/or sh
eet music, and playing songs. I tailor my lessons to the student so it's fun for both of us.

The styles I teach are: rock (classic, indie, punk) folk, pop, reggae/ska funk, blues, r&b, country, some finger-picking, and a bit of classical. I can teach you any song you want to play whether it's rap, rock hip-hop or a piano piece. I will find a way to do it and make it fun. :-)

My style is easy going, but not lackadaisical. I take teaching seriously and do my best to make the student feel comfortable. I give my students weekly assignments that I ask them to complete. However, if a student doesn't work on their assignment, I don't criticize or condemn them. I go over the assignment with them and gently remind them to play and work on the materials I've given.

I love teaching, music, and sharing my gifts with others.

Thanks and I look forward to working with you!
Cheers,
Judy G. aka Groovy Judy

*** Lesson Details ***
Lessons are once a week. Payment is due at the time of the lesson. Package rates are available upon availability.

*** Studio Equipment ***
2 guitar amps, a guitar stand, a music stand, mp3 player, a lava lamp and some cool rock posters 

*** Travel Equipment ***
acoustic and electric guitars, music stand, small amp, mp3 player and lots of cool music ***Please note - I'm located on the Peninsula, so the areas I serve are: Millbrae, Burlingame, Hillsborough, San Mateo, Belmont, San Carlos, Redwood City, Atherton & Menlo Park.***

*** Specialties ***
I love rock, pop, folk, funk, fingerpicking and the blues. I teach all of those styles and songs by great artists such as The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Ed Sheeran, Jason Mraz, Taylor Swift, Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones, Nirvana, Foo Fighters, Green Day, Sly & The Family Stone, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Eric Clapton and many more.
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Reviews
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Molly March 2, 2017
· Ukulele · In studio
She's a good teacher . She also put up with me not knowing anything well.
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Rodger R. September 28, 2016
· Ukulele · In studio
Started with some basics and built on that. Was very helpful in showing me tuning, proper hand positioning, and how to improve my fingering (those pesky notes). Got a lot for the first class and enough homework to keep me busy! Will be meeting again next week.
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Martin August 18, 2016
· Ukulele · In studio
Lesson was great fun. Judy is very good at making you feel that you're actually making progress and she is very patient with absolute rookies.
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Judy G.

Judy G.

San Mateo, CA 94402
(13)
starting at
$40 / 30-min

About cynthia B.

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San Francisco, CA
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About cynthia
Hello, there! My name is Cynthia and I can't wait to meet you! I've taught private lessons since the year of 2012 and loved helping my students learning how to read music, and helping them developing their skills in rhythmic and metric, and piano and violin performance. I was a scholarship student at ICBC and CAM (in Tijuana, Mexico) for 2 years and earned proficient experience on violin soloist, string quartet and camera music. I have private music teacher experience as well as TA-ship at various music schools. During High school I was an active member of the National Art Honor Society, a now I am a college student working toward my degree on Fine Arts, and i have showed my works in different art galleries expositions, in San Diego and San Francisco. I'm supportive and patient person and my teaching style is creative, organized, and f
un. I look forward to helping you reach your goals!
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Michael T. October 23, 2017
· Violin · In home
Cynthia is great at answering all my questions about playing and taking care of my violin!
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cynthia B.

cynthia B.

San Francisco, CA 94132
(1)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Kevin T.

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San Francisco, CA
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About Kevin
Originating from San Francisco, clarinetist Kevin Tang earned a M.M. at the Manhattan School of Music, where he was a student of Mark Nuccio. Kevin earned a B.M. from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Luis Baez and was a recipient of the Phyllis C. Wattis Scholarship. Kevin attended the San Francisco School of the Arts High School, where he studied with Jerry Simas and Art Austin. During the 2008/2009 season, Kevin won the SFSOTA concerto competition and was also named Principal Clarinetist of the California Youth Symphony.
Kevin is an active freelance musician in the Bay Area. Kevin was formerly the Principal Clarinetist of the Symphony Orchestra of the Americas, and has performed with the One World Symphony, Astoria Symphony, Brooklyn Symphony Orchestra, Bergen Symphony Orchestra, LoftOpera, Phoenix Quarte
t, Tactus, New York Repertory Orchestra, Ohio Light Opera, San Francisco Wind Ensemble, Symphony Parnassus, Cazadero Symphony and Berkeley Symphony. During the summers of 2012 and 2013, Kevin was the Clarinet Instructor at Cazadero Music Camp. Kevin has attended the Hot Springs Music Festival and Miami Summer Music Festival, and has been a member of the Ohio Light Opera.
Kevin is also an active clarinet teacher. Kevin teaches through Discover Melody. Kevin maintains a private studio of students and has also taught through the Harmony Program, a nonprofit organization that brings intensive after-school music programs to communities with limited access to instrumental music education.
...
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Tim V. January 11, 2018
· Clarinet · In home
Kevin was able to understand my problem right from the start and customize the first lesson to help me move forward.
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Kevin T.

Kevin T.

San Francisco, CA 94122
(1)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Greg L.

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Pittsburg, CA

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About Greg
My name is Greg Lynch and I have been playing music all of my life. I started with taking piano lessons for many years and then was self-taught after that. Growing up I also took violin lessons and was involved with a local strings group appropriate for children. I also taught myself how to play guitar followed by professional guitar lessons after graduating from college. In 2011 I officially decided to start my own business in teaching piano violin and guitar, tuning pianos, and performing in venues. I enjoy teaching students of all ages and patiently helping them to reach their goals. I can teach and play any song from style of music. If I am hired, I will travel to their home.
...
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Greg L.

Greg L.

Pittsburg, CA 94565
starting at
$42 / 30-min

About Sumaia J.

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Profile_121130_pi_SumaiaJackson
San Rafael, CA
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About Sumaia
I have experience teaching all levels and I love doing everything from teaching tunes, to exploring more modern techniques and setting of playing the fiddle, such as:
• What happens if your friends have a cool rock band and you want to jam with them but you play the violin and it feels awkward?
• What happens if you go play with them and your friend looks at you to take a solo in the middle of a tune? (AH!)
• What if you are playing in a traditional folk band and you want to figure out what else you can do besides play the melody?
. . . et cetera!

Not to worry, that's why I'm here, and I'm more than happy to help with all these problems and more! Playing the fiddle/violin can fill so many roles now a days and people LOVE hearing it! You'll be your town's new rock star! :)

I grew up in Santa Cruz, CA playing the fiddle and go
ing to music camps and studying classical music intensely as well as traditional fiddle music from many countries and regions. I studied in Boston at the Berklee College of Music, as well as lived in Nashville, and now hold a degree in Performance with a minor in American Roots Music. Throughout my many years of playing, I've been immersed in many different settings: I have experience playing amplified, being dropped into a jazz band and told to solo next to a saxophone player, being asked to come play with a local folk-rock cover band, playing at Bluegrass Festivals across North America, fronting a band, and being hired as a fiddle player to back up a singer-songwriter.
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Reviews
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Jake February 19, 2018
· Violin · In studio
Wow, what a talented violin teacher! I've had the opportunity to see her play on stage professionally and now I get to take lessons from her as well. She has mastery of the bow and has helped me explore my musicianship and musical ideas. Take her if you are serious in improving your playing, she'll help you get there quickly. Thanks Sumaia!
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Carolyn K. February 19, 2018
· Violin · In studio
Sumaia is smart and helpful- she identified where I needed improvement even when I couldn't tell! I've learned a lot from her. She is an incredible violin/fiddle player and teacher.
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Sumaia J.

Sumaia J.

Berkeley, CA 94702
(2)
starting at
$50 / 30-min

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