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Piano Lessons in Chicago - My Kind of Town

By Daniel K. - Chicago Piano Teacher

Warmest greetings to you from Chicago where the weather can be very cold, but the music scene will always be hot! My name is Daniel K., and I have been a music performer and instructor in this great city for over three decades, teaching Chicago piano lessons as well as playing many live and studio sessions with voice, guitar, trumpet, sax, bass, drums, and piano. My favorite pursuit is rock music, but all styles of music are readily heard throughout the area, and I am happy to sit in on a jazz ensemble, Latin group, blues band, or accompany a classic music performer.

My residence is located near Wrigley Field which is surrounded by more venues than one can count, such as The Cubby Bear, Martyr’s, Schuba’s, The Metro, The Vic Theatre, The Piano Man Lounge, and so many more clubs tha
t it would be hard to visit them all in a lifetime. Nearby on Clark Street there are two famous reggae clubs, the Wild Hare and Exodus, which are adjacent to Sluggers, a club featuring Dueling Pianos every Friday night. There are several of these venues that promote this approach to piano performance that have become popular. Sometimes an unknown player displays their talents across from a famous artist, and it can be very inspiring to hear. Opportunity is almost infinite. Billy Joel and Elton John split the bill and performed two really awesome outdoor concerts at Wrigley Field recently. It was a wonderful musical experience beyond words to hear the piano resounding from the friendly confines of the ball park throughout Lakeview. I could hear it from my front porch!

Dave Matthews was also at the ball park a few months ago, and many other famous musicians performed at the summer street festivals which seem to occur all over Chicago. The Spin Doctors played on Lincoln Avenue only steps from my door! I fell in love with the Psychedelic Furs all over again when they played the House of Blues, which they seem to do almost every year. They also did a great show at Lincoln Park Zoo, and even the animals seemed to appreciate that. I really enjoy the delightful ostinato keyboard melodies that make the Furs’ music so hypnotic.

One can never tell if they will run into The Rolling Stones in some blues club, as they come here to get new ideas from the incredible blues artists Chicago is known for. I once ran into Robert Plant who was enjoying a free concert in Grant Park. I had the opportunity to catch Passion Pit at the Petrillo Shell last summer, and was amazed at the high energy keyboard sounds they implement into their music. There are also many behind the scenes music opportunities for up and coming artists in the theatre field, such as Brier Street Theatre where Blue Man Group performs regularly, or as a pit performer in shows such as Wicked.

Sometimes I enjoy just being a listener, as the quality of music here is unsurpassed anywhere. Perhaps it is the tried and true music of yesteryear, or the newest cutting edge development of fresh talent, but one may seek out their musical desires, and possibly discover something they would have never realized without exposure to the vibrant, robust music scene in Chicago. Several years ago my interest in salsa and cha cha dancing brought me to fabulous places like Café LaGuardia or The Rumba where I could dance all night while listening to the delightful passages of the Latin rhythms played on heavenly grand pianos by accomplished players.

There are endless performance opportunities on any given night in the clubs that feature open mic nights. I use these venues to showcase the talents and accomplishments of my Chicago piano students. It begins as a dreamy idea for a new student, but is soon realized with dramatically inspiring results. There are even opportunities for the younger students at shows for all ages at places like the Hideout, which can host world famous artists on one day and teenage girl bands on the next day.

It is quite rewarding for me to work with the Chicago piano students I have been fortunate enough to teach. I am happy to share my extensive experience with all of them, and take great pleasure in the accomplishments I witness, such as a seven year old girl that can play music that she reads or an eight year old boy that writes his own love songs with his electric guitar and voice. These two students may have a hit song before they finish high school! Even the radio stations are the best in the world here. My favorite station, WXRT, features local performances of new, unsigned artists every Thursday night. I have seen this entire country on tours and travel and as I wrote in one of my songs, “Chicago…is every place I’ve ever been.”
...
Jocelyn H. Chicago, IL

An experienced piano teacher, I have taught all ages and levels and am open to working on whatever style of music you prefer while teaching the basics of reading music, theory and style. I comfortable teaching in a more classical manner or from the viewpoint of pop/jazz music as well.

About Jocelyn

I am currently a professional singer as well as a music teacher here in the Chicago area. While I am in Chicago the majority of the time working and performing, I do travel throughout the US and Europe for performances, which recently have included New York, Hawaii, Indiana, Toronto and Salzburg, Austria. I have studied singing privately for over 13 years in styles ranging from classical and opera, to pop, musical theater and jazz. I have also taken several classes on vocal pedagogy and the method behind teaching singing properly and healthily. In addition to singing, I have also studied several languages, diction, acting/performance, music history, music theory and marketing, which all come together to create the entire package necessary when teaching and performing as a singer. I have ...

Reviews

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DeloresW April 30, 2012
Jocelyn H.

Abigail loves her lessons; I suggested to her that she let you know she has a personal cordless microphone & amplifier. I thought the usage of microphone would be cool to use. Of course, this was only a suggestion, what do you think?
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ShilpaN January 11, 2012
Piano lesson

I have been taking lessons from Jocelyn for almost a month now. I feel very comfortable the way Jocelyn teaches. She is patient and explains the subject well.
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JunT December 30, 2011
Excenllent and Professional

I have learned a lots from Jocelyn. I very enjoy the lessons with Jocelyn due to her excenllent and professional teaching experience. She very understands what students need to learn and always helps students to have a solid gains in each calss.I would like to give 5-star to Jocelyn.
Chiang L. Chicago, IL

I teach students to be familiar with the keys and intervals and also hands position for the beginners. In my view, it is very important to sing notes and play the piano at the same time because it benefits key memorization and fosters a students' sense of music. With the piano, I believe that building the proper fundamentals sets the proper pace for future growth and musical interest.

About Chiang

I am a trumpet instructor with global experience and an approach to learning that is encompassing and fun for all ages. I was born in Taiwan and have studied in both Asia and the U.S., where I last earned my Master of Music degree from the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University. Students have described me as someone who is out going, someone who is laid back and fun and someone who likes to listen and communicate with my students. I have been teaching trumpet and piano since sophomore at college, in private one-on-one lessons or as a trumpet sectional coach at elementary schools or middle schools. I believe that being an educator is about the communication and the relationship that exists between a teacher and a student. The art of being a good educator exists in the ...

Reviews

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Danning C. November 8, 2014
Piano · In studio
Verified Student
I am taking piano class with Chiang since 3 months ago, starting from scratch. He has been very professional and knowledgeable, and in the meantime, being nice and forgiving (especially when I have no time to practice due to my work).
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Troy H. February 6, 2014
Trumpet
Verified Student
Professional and fun.

This cat knows his stuff, is patient and knowledgable, and is very accommodating.
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Yuli T. December 17, 2013
Piano
John is fun (and forgiving)

I haven't touched a piano since middle school, and while I was apprehensive going back to playing the piano, John made it rather fun and interesting. The first impression I had of John was how animated he was, and how much fun he has teaching and how much fun he wants you to have.
Val K. Chicago, IL

I have been teaching piano for over 15 years and helped a lot of students to get their piano skills polished. My teaching method is based on Russian classical school and I am happy to share it with everybody who is interested. I custom design my piano lessons that corresponds to each student's ability and experience.

About Val

Whether you are an experienced musician or just in the beginning of your educational journey, I perhaps, can help you to advance you potentials and bring your skills to the next level. First and foremost I am an expert in teaching voice. Not many teachers in Chicago have clients that are currently topping Billboard charts and get signed by major record labels. I do!!! I taught in Paris, Barcelona, Dubai and New York and have an extensive experience in working with a wide variety of musical genres including Pop, R&B, JAZZ, Rock, Country, Musical Theatre, Gospel and last but not least Classical, which I can proudly can call my background. Not only I have been continually developing my own art of coaching and excellence of teaching music to others, but also making much needed ...

Reviews

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Michael C. August 28, 2014
Singing · In studio
Verified Student
I started just about 3 months ago. I'm 53 and never sang before. (Mouthed the words when the nuns made the class sing in grade school). I always thought that being a singer was an instinctive talent. Now I believe that with Val's help and guidance I can become a singer. I can feel and hear my voice developing. It will take time, but I have the confidence that it can happen based upon my progress so far.
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Rob C. August 26, 2014
Singing · In studio
Verified Student
Val is all you can ask for from a teacher. He challenges you, but still supports you as you learn. It was difficult for me to step in front of someone to sing, but Val has helped me sing more freely. I have been doing lessons for half a year and look forward to improving at each one.
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Dana K. January 26, 2014
Singing
Verified Student
Supportive and Patient, Challenging and Fun!

In just the few months I have been taking lessons with Val, my voice has opened up to a whole other level. His exercises are challenging and, yes, some of his instructions make me giggle, but they work! He challenges me to explore just above my comfort zone and is patient and supportive. I am discovering new areas of my vocal chords and mouth I didn't even know existed, and I can tell it's only just the beginning. I have grown so much with Val I upped my lessons to twice a week because I just can't get enough! You think your voice is done and is what it is? It's not. Go to Val and he'll prove you otherwise! lol
Daniel K. Chicago, IL

Strong fundamental emphasis with patient review

About Daniel

Daniel, a former faculty member of Columbia College in Chicago, is a studio and live performance singer and musician based in Chicago. His teaching and performing experience spans three decades, and includes expertise in the studies of voice, guitar, piano, bass, drums, and trumpet, along with music theory, arranging, and composing. He is a Lincoln Academy Student Laureate who holds a BA in Music Composition, and has attended graduate courses in education at Roosevelt University and DePaul University in Chicago. He has taught students of all ages at private studios, public school, and college. Daniel is described by his students as a natural teacher. He prefers to be regarded as an advancing student, and takes the journey along with his students to guide them towards their goals with a

Reviews

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Kathleen R. July 31, 2014
Guitar · In studio
Verified Student
Dan has been a great teacher thus far. He is patient and finds material that I find interesting while keeping me engaged during the lesson. He has helped me with some vocal tips as well! I really am getting my money's worth taking lessons with him. I would recommend Dan to any aspiring musician in need of lessons!
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Valerie L. February 12, 2014
Piano
Verified Student
Consistent quality

Daniel continues to devise new ways to make learning music theory fascinating, and the mechanics of playing the piano fun. His encouraging nature minimizes the frustration of being a beginning student.
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Anant S. November 21, 2013
Saxophone
Verified Student
excellent instructor and a wonderful person

I have been taking music lessons with Daniel since April of 2013 and it has been a great learning experience.

I had no musical background and I started learning Saxophone with Daniel and 7 months later, I am able to play popular songs that he chooses to fit best for enhancing learning curve. He does a great job with reinforcing correct habits from the very beginning and has been very encouraging and has highlighted improvement as we go from class to class. As music learning can be frustratingly slow, the feedback and reassurance he provides definitely helps in keep going back for more.

I wanted to learn guitar and piano with him as well, he encouraged to learn only Piano (for enhancing learning curve for musical theory concepts) and hold guitar for later. Which speaks about how he is genuinely concerned about your learning of music with sound reasoning. So now I take guitar and Piano lessons with him. He is very patient, polite and professional. He is great with students of all ages and easily modifies teaching style as per student needs.

Besides all that he is a great person to talk to. Numerous times we have had great discussions about things outside music.

I would highly recommend Daniel for music lessons to everyone.
Melodie F. Chicago, IL

Piano lessons differ from Classical Piano lessons by being more about what the student wants to learn, instead of following a scholarly path toward becoming an accomplished pianist. There will still be technical exercises, but they might be tailored to the goal of playing a certain style.

About Melodie

An adult voice or singing lesson has a minimum duration of 45min. The scheduling options I accept are either weekly recurring or Schedule-As-You-Go. All "recurring" schedules must be on a weekly basis. If you're not taking a lesson at the same time every week with me, then your option is Schedule-As-You-Go, which means each lesson is scheduled on an individual, floating basis, with no standing appointment. I generally recommend the Schedule As-You-Go option for my students. If the student is younger than 18, I must meet a parent/guardian before or at the first lesson. If the child's lesson is in my studio, the parent/guardian must see my studio before or at the first lesson. In my "studio" there is room for one student and one parent/guardian/friend. There is no room for any ...

Reviews

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Dale M. December 6, 2014
Singing · In studio
Verified Student
My lessons with Melodie are everything I hoped they would be. I had the goal of finding my vocal range, defining what type of singer I could be, and developing my voice. She has exceeded all my expectations and I am learning quick. She's very patient, teaches in an easy to understand method, and has a great attitude. Best of all, we have a blast together! I look forward to each and every one of our lessons. Melodie clearly is a practiced instructor and it seems that she would be able to find an effective way to teach anyone. I definitely recommend Melodie!
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Miguel D. February 14, 2014
Singing
Great results!

I've have a number of other voice teachers in the the past and have had mixed results and made some progress. Since I started working with Melodie, I have grown so much as a singer and musician. She has greatly improved my vocal intonation, breath control and vocal range. When we work on a particular piece of music her input for better interpretation has always been right on the mark and I am better able to convey the message of the music. in short working with Melodie has allowed me to find my true singing voice. I will be forever grateful to her for her superb musical guidance.
Caitlin A. Chicago, IL

About Caitlin

I am a life-long musician and active performer here in Chicago, IL. I've been playing music since age 5 and have variously studied piano, cello, and percussion. As a double major in Anthropology and Music at Lawrence University (Appleton, WI), I am drawn to music as a creative cultural phenomenon that resonates between all people and it is for this reason that I love to share, teach, and learn music with others. I am building a studio here in Chicago and am excited to share my love of cello and commitment to making music fun as I work to build students into life-long musicians. My primary instrument is the cello and I have performance experience as a soloist, as well as orchestral and chamber musician. Since arriving in Chicago in 2010, I have served as Principal Cellist with the ...

Reviews

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Magdalena B. November 15, 2014
Piano · In studio
Verified Student
She is a wonderful teacher. My daughter is always excited about the classes. She is very well organized and has a great lesson plan for young children. She is very patient and I highly recommend her.
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Teresa Z. October 13, 2014
Cello · In home
Verified Student
Caitlin is an experienced, enthusiastic teacher. She is always ready with a variety of methods, exercises and suggestions that make learning cello fun and approachable. I give her an A+ and would recommend her for other adult learners.
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Jacob G. September 7, 2014
Cello · In home
Verified Student
very nice, personable, and even stayed a bit longer to talk through questions/give advice

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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.

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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.

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Understanding Rhythm

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

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Whether you're just starting out or a seasoned pro, check out the Piano articles on our blog.

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8 Unexpected Benefits of Playing the Piano
There are several benefits of playing piano that go far beyond a greater appreciation for music and the acquisition of a new skill. Most of these benefits are applicable to both adults and children - it’s never too late, nor too early, to explore your musical side! If you are still unsure about signing up for piano lessons, read on to check out some of the long-term benefits you can expect to reap. Some you may never have thought about before! Better Response to Criticism To get the most fro
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The piano is a beautiful instrument, capable of playing a wide array of sounds, from soft or staccato to broadly lyrical and even grandiose and rhapsodic. The ability of a composer to create such a huge range of emotions and portray a large variety of settings and ideas on the piano goes a long way in explaining why certain famous piano songs have stood the test of time and are still instantly recognizable to listeners. This also explains why these famous piano songs are often used to accompany
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As a beginner, learning how to read sheet music for piano is one of the first things you'll work on with your teacher. Read on as Tucson, AZ tutor Blake C. shares his strategy for understanding the relationships between the notes on the page: One of the most difficult things about learning how to read sheet music for the piano, as opposed to most other instruments, is that there is not just a single melody to be played. Piano music requires you to play more the one part at a time. Usually t
5 Fun Games for Learning Piano Chords
Learning to play the piano is a really rewarding process, for aspiring musicians of all ages! But remember: as with all new skills, it takes a lot of practice and commitment to make progress. Simply playing away at the keys one by one can get you past the first few lessons, but if you really want to start understanding the piano, learning piano chords is important - especially as you start working on more complicated piano songs. You can learn how to play chords with the help of a good piano tea
Top 5 Piano Lesson Books for Adults
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