Study of basic techniques: finger picking style, playing with the pick, Basic music notation and tablature reading. Various styles: country, rock, classical.
• I have over 20 years experience as a music teacher, conductor, theater/orchestra director and a performer in Russia, Norway and the United States. • I possess excellent interpersonal skills and over the years developed the ability to communicate efficiently and connect with every student I teach. • I am creative and enthusiastic while working with people of all ages. • I have a reputation of being passionate about achieving professional goals.
Employment: 09/08- Present NYC Board of Education, P.S. 48 • Band & Orchestra Director • Teach children K-5 to play musical instruments
in small groups and large ensembles • Organize and perform Winter and Spring Concerts
02/08- Present Yakov's Music for Gifted & Talented, Inc, Brooklyn, NY • Founder and Music Director • Teach various musical instruments and vocal
06/07-06/08 Rockaway-Five Towns Symphony, Lynbrook, NY • Music Director, Conductor • Conducted weekly rehearsals (night) and 3-4 concerts during the concert season
10/03-06/08 Globe Institute of Technology, New York, NY • Adjunct Professor of Music
06/07-08/07 JCC of Cherry Hill, NJ • Musical Theater Director • Taught acting, improvisation, singing. Produced musical shows.
10/06-06/07 JCH of Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, NY • Musical Theater Director • Produced musical theater shows • Taught students of ages 5-12 various vocal selections
09/00-06/07 NYC Board of Education, District 20, P.S.200; P.S.179 • Band / Orchestra Director • Taught all woodwind, brass and percussion, violin, piano
05/99-06/06 School for Musical Performance, Brooklyn, NY • Instructed students on Piano, Guitar, All string and wind instruments and vocals. • Prepared students for the auditions to the prestigious schools and other music organizations.
1993-1997 St. Petersburg Radio Orchestra, Russia • Principal Bassoonist Other work experience: • Performed as a bassoonist with The Kirov Opera & Ballet Theatre, the Mussorgsky Opera & Ballet Theatre, The St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, The Chamber Opera Orchestra of St. Petersburg and other Symphony and Chamber orchestras of St. Petersburg, Russia • Performed Solo Recitals in Russia, Poland, Norway and United States
Education: 06/98 The St. Petersburg Conservatory of Music, St. Petersburg, Russia M.A. in Music: Major – Bassoon Performance; Minor – Conducting 06/91 The St. Petersburg College of Music named after Rimsky-Korsakov, Russia B.A. with a Double Major in Orchestral Performance (Bassoon) and Music Education
*** Lesson Details *** Hi there! Would you just like to learn a few songs on the piano, violin or guitar? Or you'd like your child be become next Joshua Bell or Evgenij Kissin? My lessons are designed with each individual student in mind. I will start my lesson with introduction and proceed with warm-up routine. I always make sure that the student is comfortable with the pace that I am offering. I am mixing elements of music theory, history and performance techniques in order to help my student to embrace the beauty of music making experience. All my students are ready to perform at the recital after just 3-4 months of lessons.
*** Studio Equipment *** I teach using Fisher Baby Grand Piano. Fender guitars. Major brands band instruments; yamaha, selmer, gemeingardt, etc.
*** Travel Equipment *** Fender Guitar, Yamaha Flute/Saxophone, Casio Digital Piano, Custom Violin made in England.
*** Specialties *** suzuki violin, classical, jazz
Jacquline W. February 10, 2016
In home Verified Student
Was a GOD SENT GIFT. I REALLY ENJOYED THE INITIAL LESSON. I AM ANTICIPATING ALL FUTURE LESSONS WITH YAKOV. HE WAS EVERYTHING I PRAYED FOR. HE WAS PLEASANT, PATIENT AND VERY KNOWLEGABLE.
HE MADE ME FEEL VERY COMFORTABLE. YAKOV. WILL BE MY MUSIC
INSTRUCTOR WHO WILL TEACH ME TO PLAY, THE VIOLIN AND THE GUITAR.YAKOV IS THE BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Harold B. December 20, 2015
In home Verified Student
It was my first lesson and now I have some idea how hold the violin and the bow. My homework is to practice a few notes on each string and then to practice playing the A scale. I think I can do it in two octaves. What is challenging is to play the scale without hearing a screeching sound. I'm looking forward to playing like Sarah Chang (hopefully after five lessons).
Charlie S. December 7, 2015
In home Verified Student
Very knowledgeable on the instrument and helpful in his explanations.
My name is Sylivan. I'm a dedicated musician who is passionate in music education and guitar music. I have majored in Music and received my professional training at City College of New York with a minor in Education. I have been playing music for 20 years and have performed in many different occasions. Over the years, I have developed various kinds of skills in music from my education, formal training and experiences:
- Learned various types of music for over 10 years such as classical, rock, and pop - Avid guitarist and also proficient in bass, drums, piano, and v
ocal - Solid foundation of theory and harmony - Worked as music and guitar instructor for private music lesson and other organizations such as summer camps and private music institutes.
I have also been teaching children and teenagers music for over 10 years, including group classes and private lessons. Below are some of the goals in my teaching method and what students can benefit in every lesson:
- Explaining the structure of guitar and giving the basic information about the instrument - Instructing students about both the basic and advance techniques in guitar playing - Striking a fine blend of theory and practicality while teaching guitar playing - Ability to understand the needs, short and long term goals of different students and changing the methods of teaching accordingly - Preparing students for student recitals or public performances if necessary
I'm funny, friendly, outgoing, and love to play guitar. I’m also flexible and easy to work with, however when it comes to learning I’m strict and serious. Some of my students call me “Three-Face”, for I’m not only your teacher but also your friend and your coach: I will introduce you to the world of guitar as a teacher; jam and have fun with you as a friend; and I will train you and make sure you are on the right as a coach.
I like all kinds of music, from Classical to Metal and everything in between. Some of my favorite bands/artists who influence me include: Joe Satriani, Slash, Santana, Jimi Hendrix, AC/DC, Metallica, Guns N’ Roses, Led Zeppelin, Disturbed, Antoine Carre, Niccolo Paganini, Antonio Vivaldi…
Sharing my knowledge in music and guitar makes me happy, and it is the greatest joy for me to see my students grow and play the music they like. Guitar lessons should be fun and enjoyable, yet challenging.
Thank you very much for visiting my page and I hope to teach you soon!
- Sylivan T.
*** Lesson Details *** During our first lesson, we will first talk about your goal and music direction that you want to pursuit. Then based on your goal and direction, I will customize a curricular track and briefly explain the things that you need to know and what you need to focus on in order to achieve your goal.
As your instructor, my goal is to help you to reach your goals and to have fun with the music you enjoy. In each lesson, according to your progress, I will introduce you new concepts/materials using fun and easy-to-learn activities. Then we will work on the materials together and have fun jamming together. Yes!! You will feel like you are jamming along with your friend instead of taking a guitar lesson, because guitar lessons suppose to be fun!!!
Each particular lesson I will assign you some assignments. They would either be things that we already jammed on during the lesson, or something that I want you to work on your own. Then when we meet again, we will go over the assignments together and I will give you comments and advises to help you play better.
Below are only some of the instructional books that I usually use for teaching beginners. I will also use other instructional books and music repertories according to the ability of the students and their music style:
- Hal Leonard Guitar Method: Will Schmid and Greg Koch - Alfred’s Basic Guitar Method: Alfred d’ Auberge and Morton Manus - Hal Leonard Rock Guitar Method: Michael Mueller - Solo Guitar Playing: Frederick M. Noad
From my experience as a teacher and student, I believe there is no such thing as a “Perfect Instructional Book”. Therefore along with the above instructional books I will add in some other activities and exercises written by myself.
*** Travel Equipment *** I expect my students to have a guitar and a chromatic tuner. Also a note book, some staff paper, and a pen and a pencil.
For electric guitar, it's necessary to have an amp and a .25 inch cable at home
*** Specialties *** Usually use Mei Bay Guitar Method as a general guide and text for guitar teaching.
*** Specialized in classical, rock, blues, and pop ***
Sharon C. November 20, 2015
Acoustic Guitar ·
Sylivan is a great teacher with great personality. He was there to help me not only when I struggled with music and guitar but also when I felt down. I asked him why he cared so much and he told me a healthy mind is most important which helps in music learning =) Sylivan is also patient; even sometimes I can't stand myself but he was there to help me to learn lol He has passion in teaching and you can see it once he's in action.
Tiffany November 20, 2015
Classical Guitar ·
Sylivan is patient and kind. I have been taking lesson with him for more than a year already. He builds up my confidence in music and gives me encouragment whenever I need it. I'm so thankful for having him as my guitar teacher.
Rob Meade August 15, 2015
In home Verified Student
First lesson, but Sylivan is very professional and is very concerned with balancing one's work load expectations with what one actually has the time to accomplish. I look forward to our next lesson.
Professor Nick R. (guitar, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, dobro/resonator/slide, tenor guitar, baritone resonator, bass, drums, composition) is currently the adjunct professor at Essex College, Jazz clinician for over 16 years via Kupferberg Center (Queens College) and has been on the staff at Great Neck Music Conservatory. Nick has given lectures at Manhattanville College, at Queens College and at schools, nationally.
-Down Beat magazine current issue [Jan/Feb 2016] Hot Jazz Jumpers' "The Very Next Thing" DVD/CD review
-Jazz Insider magazine current issue [Dec 2015] 2.5 page interview
st Jazz Guitar magazine interview [February 2015 issue]
-Vanity Fair magazine (August 2013) interview
"Summer of 2013, Nick R. performed at Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin's home. It was an honor to meet Paul McCartney and jam with him while he played toy harmonica. Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Iridium, Bluenote, Birdland, U.N., IAJE, Cape Cod Jazz Festival, NJPAC, Sweet Rhythm, Smalls, Zinc Bar, Smoke Jazz Club, internationally: Japan, Spain, Russia, Brasil, St. Kitts, Canada, France, Bermuda, Sweden, Israel
-Toured/recorded and/or worked as sideman with Jimmy McGriff, Teddy Charles, Sonny Dallas, Victor Jones and Cultur-versy, Vince Giordano & The Night Hawks, Frank Vignola/Joe Ascione, Miles Griffith, David Pleasant, Jim Nolet (former violinist for the Jazz Passengers), Anastasia Rene, Jon Weber, Mona's Hot Four, Gordon Au's Grand Street Stompers, Michael Arenella's Dreamland Orchestra, with Jesse Gelber, Raphael McGregor, Emily Asher's Garden Party, and many other groups.
-Appears in Sam Mendes Film "Away We Go"
-Movie Soundtrack: King George.
-Guitar/banjo: "Jew Grows in Brooklyn," "Take Me Along," "The Big Apple Circus" + others.
-Banjo/Guitar Chair: "New Girl In Town" (Irish Rep Theatre)
M.A. from the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College (partial scholarship)
B.S. from S.U.N.Y. Stony Brook, graduated magna cum laude. Dean's list all semesters
-Published interview (book): A New Face of Jazz (Cicily Janus)
-Playing guitar/banjo on first episode of new PBS cartoon "Peg and Cat"
- Current adjunct professor at Essex College
-Guest lecturing professor at Manhattanville College
-Substitute adjunct professor at Queens College
-Winning participant: I.A.J.E. with Miles Griffith's New Ting 2007. Performance and educational certificate granted.
-Winning participant; part-scholarship award: 2004 International Jazz Workshop at BANFF Centre, Canada (dir, Dave Douglas)
-Winning participant; full-scholarship award of the 2001 JAS academy in Aspen Colorado (dir, Christian McBride (Down Beat Dec. 2001)
-Studying Bol (Indian rhythmic system) with tabla player, Pandit Samir Chatterjee 2006-2007; 2013-current
-Studied with Pat Martino, Billy Bauer, Ben Monder, Tony Purrone, Pete Bernstein, Dr. Stephen Salerno, Dr. David Belser
-Studying African Rhythms with drummer, Harvey Wirht
*** Lesson Details *** With over 20 years teaching experience, Nick is patient with children & adults. He has a creative, unique pedagogy emphasizing hearing through singing, ear-training & natural, organic listening. Nick instills healthy absorption of music while students have fun learning their music, sight reading, internalizing with focus on rhythm and time. As a student, you will get to work on music that you, the student select as well as work on sight-reading, technique, ear-training. We will also work out of method books and use other sources of information.
*** Studio Equipment *** Chairs, music stands, instrument stands, classical foot pedals, classical guitar pillows, guitar amps, guitar, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, drum set. Students usually provide their own instruments but it's possible to borrow an instrument during the lesson at the studio on the first lesson. (free street parking right in front!)
*** Specialties *** Nick's pedagogy emphasizes ear-training, singing, reading and truly hearing the music we are working on. Rather than rote teaching and guitar tablature, he instills natural listening, transcribing, sight-reading and proper technique. Lessons are always enjoyable as Nick observes each student's unique needs and listen's to their song preferences and musical goals. Students have the opportunity to learn pieces and genres they select and they are trained to figure out tunes by ear (ear-training) and transcribe.
-classical guitar and Brazilian guitar (nylon 6 string and nylon 7 string guitar) -acoustic steel string guitar, electric 6 string and electric 7 string guitar - jazz guitar + an eclectic mix of styles: blues, Brazilian music, Latin Jazz, Afro-Peruvian, Indian music, rock, heavy metal, funk, R & B, Motown, reggae + other genres. - tenor banjo (traditional jazz, jazz from New Orleans, Dixieland and world music) -5 string banjo (Earl Scruggs finger picking [bluegrass and country]) -tenor guitar -ukulele -mandolin -resonator slide/Dobro. -baritone resonator (slide)
Bryan October 8, 2016
In home Verified Student
At just my 1st lesson with Mr. Russo -- HE'S THE MAN!!! Very concerned with getting the most out teaching/reaching the student!!! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED; thanks to Takelessons!!!
Sara G. October 3, 2016
In home Verified Student
Great musician, great instructor. Learned more than I ever thought I would be able to at this age. Very patient.
Robert May 24, 2016
In studio Verified Student
Nick was quick to assess my ability and direction and we made immediate progress
at a comfortable pace.
I will break down the nuances of learning the classical guitar in a friendly, clear, and articulate manner. We will discuss various concepts of the acoustic guitar in the styles and songs you enjoy most.
A graduate of the University of Rochester with a B.A. in Music and Psychology and trained at renowned National Guitar Workshop, Adam is an experienced teacher and performer on the guitar, piano, ukulele, and bass in a variety of styles, including rock, pop, jazz, classical, and folk. Adam loves to share his passion for music with others, and ever since his first student, an autistic child, Adam has sought to make learning music fun, regardless of age, style, and ability.
*** Lesson Details *** My approach to teaching music is strictly an individualized one, catering to the specific interes
ts and goals of each student. I believe that if learning music is truly enjoyable and fun, students will develop a sincere love for their instrument. In teaching children, my emphasis is on instilling in them a love of music. While progressing in music obviously requires preparation outside of lessons, I consciously avoid asking students to practice. Instead, I incorporate the music and styles that appeal most to the student and use them as vehicles for teaching concepts.
I strive to make learning music fun, regardless of age, style, and ability. I organize an annual recital to showcase my students' talents and hard work.
*** Travel Equipment *** I will provide all music and instructional materials, and ask that students provide a clean, quiet area to hold our lesson, ideally with a music stand. I also ask that a student provide their own instrument. If providing an instrument is not possible, I ask that the student notify me so I can provide an instrument for them in the interim.
*** Specialties *** I specialize in a wide range of styles on the acoustic and electric guitar, piano, ukulele, and bass.
I explain music theory in a fun, clear, and articulate manner and show its benefits and application in song writing, learning music, and playing by ear. My extensive background in rock, classical, pop, folk, and jazz allows for a truly cater my instruction to my student's tastes.
I make it my mission to structure my lessons on my student's goals and interests and avoid imposing concepts that don't interest my students.
Augustin T. May 27, 2016
Bass Guitar ·
In home Verified Student
Since our first lesson I've been progressing nonstop. He's a great teacher for both learning songs and exploring the nuts and bolts of music.
Tamar M. August 12, 2015
In home Verified Student
Adam does a great job of adjusting to the student's level of experience. I'm a beginner with some minimal uke experience, and he adjusted the pace of the lesson accordingly. I especially like his emphasis on contemporary music; he seems to have fun with music which, as someone who endured years of strict classical piano training as a kid, I find very refreshing.
Peter O. September 10, 2014
Acoustic Guitar ·
In studio Verified Student
Best instructor I ever had. He has some ear. He listens to a song I want to learn and he plays it. I'm jealous. When he shows me how to play it he makes it fun and so easy. If you want to learn how to play, Adam is the one.
I've been teaching 20 years. Classical Guitar technique is the foundation for most fingerpicking styles. Exploring the repertoire of Bach, the classic guitar composers - Sor, Guliani, Carcassi and learning how to arrange melodies for the guitar even if not written for guitar are some of the goals when I teach this style. My specialty is Brazilian Guitar and I have available vast repertoire of guitar music for the "Classical Guitar" plus I've explored the works of Piazolla and Leo Brouwer to name 2 guitarists. For Beginners we begin with 2 fingers, basic reading, getting a feel for your instrument, all made fun through the use of melodic material from various sources, sometimes pop tunes chosen by the student
Billy N. has played Jazz, Brazilian and Classical music in the NYC area for the last 20 years. He has actively taught both finger-style and pick guitar for the last 20 years. He was on staff at the American Institute of Guitar for 11 years. His book on Brazilian Guitar is published by Alfred Music and currently available. He now offers online lessons via Skype as well as in his private studio. Playing credits include many museums and clubs in the NY area including Museum of Modern Art Museum of the City of NY and an extended stay at the Guggenheim museum in the Summer of 2000. Also he has been
in the Brooklyn Museum concert series with his group Afinidades Bronx Libraries Brooklyn College and the Jewish Museum in trio and duo setting with great Percussionist Vanderlei Pereira. He has performed in Brazil as well most recently in the South of Brazil, receiving TV and radio coverage. He has also done workshops and performed at the Conservatory of the state of Pernambuco. In August 2004 he performed weekly at Rio Scenarium in Rio de Janeiro. His Band Brooklyn Brazil Bop has played at Joe's Pub as well as Central Park Festival. His band the Brazilian Acoustic ensemble performs periodically at 'Barbes' an important performance space in Brooklyn NY. In 2007 he gave a successful jazz workshop and concert in the city of Florianopolis Brazil. Billy has been awarded 3 prestigious composer's residencies 2006 - Yaddo and 2007 - The MacDowell Colony. He was featured on the PBS news hour during his residence at MacDowell. In 2008 he was awarded another MacDowell residency and followed this with a 3 hour appearance presenting his compositions live on WKCR Jazz Radio and another live radio appearance with band in 2010. Billy regularly plays in many venues around NY in Jazz trio settings as well as with Brazilian vocalists and instrumentalists. Most Recently his groups have been performing at the famed Cornelia Street Cafe in New York City. He also specializes in solo guitar and can double on percussion (Pandeiro) and Cavaquinho. Billy has completed two CD's of his original music and an EP of his original Choro music. He has a BFA in Jazz Performance from CCNY.
Testimonials: From Coda Magazine August 2012: by Seton Hawkins
Through outstanding collaborations like the Brazilian Acoustic Ensemble, guitarist and composer Billy N has emerged as a leading exponent of the music of Brazil. Exploring far beyond the well-trodden bossa nova path. Billy unearths the full range of styles the country offers, including choro, baiào, valsa and samba, and gives American audiences a rich panoramic glimpse into Brazilian art, highlighting its parallels with progressive jazz.
A recipient of composers residencies at Yaddo and MacDowell Colony, he is the curator of a three-day series at the club dedicated to the country's music. Billy will showcase his own group—a sextet with drummer Matt Kane, bassist Leco Reis, saxophonists Michael Attias and Eric Schugren and trumpeter Ben Holmes—in a concert primarily featuring his original works. SH
Reviews of my Book on Alfred Brazil: Guitar Atlas, I love this series and this is the best of the six titles I have. Billy really knows his stuff; the analysis of time at the beginning is superb: something I now use in my teaching. This is definitely for intermediate and higher guitarists, but the pieces are worth the effort to get right, and the accompanying CD shows you what you are aiming for. This is as good as my other Brazilian guitar book (by Nelson Faria) and much more compact and easier to follow. Highly recommended!
This book is essential homework for students of Brazilian guitar. It is one of the best resources out there, along with Nelson Faria's "The Brazilian Guitar Book." The original etudes are not only instructional, but are nice pieces in their own right. An excellent value.
*** Lesson Details *** I've taught all levels over 20 years both in NYC and Brazil. I work with the material that the student wants and also through recordings and charts introduce much music that the student might have been unfamiliar with. My lessons are catered to the individual. There is no obstacle anyone has that is too great to work through. My approach to rhythmic training has helped many. I have simple way of breaking down the guitar fingerboard which can used as a guide to learn harmony. I'll get you into the horizontal aspects of guitar, traveling across the neck, making music across one string as well, mastering the guitar in a small fret range - " vertical position playing".
*** Studio Equipment *** I have guitar for the student, either electric or nylon. Cavaquinho students bring their instrument. First time students must bring their instrument so I can see what they are playing on.
*** Specialties *** Brazilian Fingerstyle - Choro, Samba, Baiao Solo Jazz Guitar - Pick or Fingers Beginning Flamenco Cavaquinho Improvisation for any instrument Harmony and Theory
Flaminia D. May 12, 2015
Acoustic Guitar ·
In home Verified Student
I have been taking lessons with Billy since January 2015. I am a total beginner and I really think I have made the best choice ever to pick him as my teacher. Billy is an experienced guitar teacher and a professional player that knows great techniques for beginners. He has been teaching me basics of guitar in a smart way, and at each lesson I feel I learn something new and at the same time I can clearly see how much progress I have made since our first lesson. He has also been teaching me how to read music and tabs which proofed to be extremely useful every time I want to learn a new song by myself. Highly recommended!
Lynn W. December 17, 2014
I cannot recommend Billy enough. I studied jazz improvisation with Billy for three years, and later returned to study Brazilian guitar and Piedmont-style finger picking with him. I had been playing for more than twenty years when I started studying with him and he not only helped me improve my playing technically and creatively (on electric and nylon stringed guitars) but also expanded my knowledge of theory and helped me develop new approaches to composing and arranging. I am still working with the material he gave me and take lessons from him whenever my schedule allows.
felicia D. October 17, 2014
Brazilian Guitar ·
I took Brazilian guitar lessons from Billy for several years. His method focuses on absorbing the many rhythms of Brazil and translating them from percussion instruments to the guitar. Much of his effort is devoted on achieving the elusive Brazilian swing, which non Brazilians need to learn. Billy is excellent in breaking down the rhythms and explaining them. He even has a book out on his method. He covers various Brazilian genres: choro, bossa nova, samba, baiao and more.
Billy also is an accomplished jazz, classical and flamenco guitarist with a thorough understanding of harmony and improvisation. He is very patient and has years of teaching and performance experience. You will be lucky to study with him!