Markham Music Lessons

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About James P.

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Wheaton, IL

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About James
Early Guitar Studies & Pit Orchestra Performances (1995-2002)

I began taking guitar lessons at the age of 11 with blues/jazz guitarist Tom Castonzo, a frequent performer, bandleader and teacher in and around the Chicago area. My studies with Tom lasted for many years and covered various musical and technical aspects of many different styles ranging from jazz to classical and everything in between. In 2002, I began performing in pit orchestras for various musicals including Jesus Christ Superstar, Les Miserable, The Wiz, Little Shop of Horrors, and Seussical the Musical.

Original Music Projects (2003-Present)

From 2003-2008, I wrote and performed music for 2 different progressive rock bands: Dream Haven and The Unit Theory. Dream Haven released the EP entitled “Nostalgia is Five Frame” and The Unit Theory released a ful
l-length album entitled “Seed.” Both bands performed all over the greater Chicago-land area and helped me hone my skills as an electric guitarist. Throughout this time, we shared the stage with national touring & recording acts Fear Factory, Mastodon, Enuff Z’nuff, and Algernon, to name a few. I now play lead guitar in the Chicago-based alternative rock band Davenport Ed and am having started an all-instrumental acoustic/rock trio with two percussionists.

Undergraduate Studies (College of Dupage and Northern Illinois University: 2002-2008)

After high school, I attended the College of Dupage (COD) and began studying jazz guitar with Dr. Zvonimir Tot. Towards the end of my studies at COD, I developed an interest in classical guitar and took lessons from Steve Ramsdell. After I received my Associate’s Degree in Music from COD I started teaching private guitar lessons at various suburban Chicagoland locations. I graduated from COD in 2004 with an Associate in Music degree. In the fall of 2005, I started my Bachelor’s studies in Classical Guitar Performance at Northern Illinois University (NIU) with Fareed Haque (Winner of “Best World Guitarist” in Guitar Magazine). While at NIU, I continued to teach & perform up until I graduated in May 2008 with a Bachelor’s degree in Classical Guitar Performance.

Graduate Studies (New England Conservatory of Music: 2008-2010)

I started my graduate studies in August 2008 at the New England Conservatory of Music (NEC) in Boston, under the tutelage of world-renowned guitarist Eliot Fisk. As an active performer in the greater Boston area, I made it a goal to bring the classical guitar to unorthodox venues such as senior centers, local TV, hospitals, dialysis treatment centers, and even juvenile halls! While at NEC, I started to take an interest in transcription, which is the art of adapting a composition for a voice or instrument other than the original. Eliot Fisk is a master at this, and his guidance was profound. In June 2010, I graduated from NEC with a Master’s in Music (with Academic Honors) for Classical Guitar Performance. My master's recital was a tour-de-force of virtuosic classical, acoustic, and electric guitar pieces with music ranging from J.S. Bach to Joaquin Rodrigo to Steve Vai.

Flamenco Guitar & Ritmo Flamenco (2009-Present)

During my time at NEC, I was fortunate enough to meet Grisha Goryachev, a master flamenco guitarist. Grisha introduced me to the basic principals of flamenco guitar and proved to be a wonderful resource. I continue my flamenco guitar studies by learning historical flamenco recordings entirely by ear. Short of living in Spain for extended periods of time, I have found this to be the purest way of learning. I am now the flamenco guitarist for Ritmo Flamenco, an ensemble that features dancer Diane Campbell.

Professional Musician & Awards (2010 – Present)

I moved back to Chicago in July 2010 and have since had hundreds of performances that include weddings, corporate events, restaurants, recitals, and more. My reputation as a premiere performing guitarist has grown rapidly in the past 2 years, and I earned 2 awards at the end of 2012: “Top Solo Guitarist” on the world’s largest entertainment site which is Gig Master and “Best of Wedding” (the world’s largest wedding-planning site). I am a regular featured performing artist at premiere restaurants in the Chicago suburbs including The Cellar Bistro in Wheaton, Eddie Merlot’s in Warrenville, and Wildwood Steakhouse in Geneva.

*** Lesson Details ***
***Teaching students ages 10+***

My first goal as an instructor is to get an idea of what the student's goals are as a guitarist, and then we start working towards that goal. This means that while the basic concepts are covered (chords, some sight-reading in most cases, scales, etc), no student curriculum is exactly the same. After a few months of studying with me, no matter what style of music, we will have learned notes, chords, and songs that are of interest to the student. Then, we will discuss how all of those elements tie together and map out a practice routine. A goal I have for every student is to create a realistic, efficient, and enjoyable practice routine that produces results.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Music stands, guitars (acoustic, electric, classical), cable/amp, appropriate paper materials & books for learning music.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I do not travel to lessons.

*** Specialties ***
I specialize in classical, rock, pop, & music theory.
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Reviews
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David June 29, 2017
· Classical Guitar · In home
James is a great teacher able to break down complex music and communicate how to play it.
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Mike McCullough April 5, 2016
· Guitar · In home
Jim is a great instructor, and a great guy. I feel like I am making good progress after only 5 weeks.
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Lisa G. March 12, 2014
· Guitar ·
Talented Teacher and Guitarist

Jim teaches my daughter guitar. He is her fourth guitar teacher and by far the best one of all. She has had lessons from him for the past two years. Besides talent, he has the schooling to back him up. She has learned a lot from Jim, and he truly listens to her input. It's amazing how good he is and how good my daughter has become. Jim is also very patient, positive and motivating.
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James P.

James P.

Wheaton, IL 60187
(10)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Dora H.

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Chicago, IL
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About Dora
*** Studio Equipment ***
Living room w/ piano and seating for parents

*** Specialties ***
Piano and voice, musical theater and classical music.
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Reviews
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Debbie November 2, 2017
· Piano · In studio
My 6 year old son has been taking piano with Dora for just 6 months, but has done amazingly well under her teaching. Dora is fantastic with kids, and she has such a warm, friendly nature that my son always looks forward to his lessons. A number of my neighbors send their kids to Dora for voice and piano, and have nothing but wonderful things to say. I plan to send my younger child to Dora when she's older.
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Marvi October 25, 2017
· Piano · In studio
Dora is an insightful piano teacher, personable and kind to her students. Her attentiveness and piano instruction has helped our children grow from no piano experience to playing a minuet during the course of a year.
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Sally October 24, 2017
· Piano · In studio
Dora is an amazing teacher- she is knowledgeable and patient. My 6 year old daughter looks forward to her lesson each week and is begging to take singing with her as well. I only wish she was my teacher growing up! I am tempted to start lessons again! I have recommended her to several friends who are also very pleased with her teaching abilities.
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Dora H.

Dora H.

Chicago, IL 60618
(21)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Blake C.

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Lowell, IN

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About Blake
Hi, my name is Blake C. I teach guitar, singing, piano, drums, and bass online and at my Lowell, Indiana studio.

I also teach business, grammar, math (elementary, basic, pre-algebra) writing to include essay and professional business writing.

As a doctoral student at the University of New England, I am currently studying educational leadership with an emphasis on transformative leadership. In addition, I hold a Master of Science degree in Strategic Leadership from the University of Mary located in Bismarck, North Dakota and a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from WGU Indiana in Indianapolis, Indiana.

I have more than 26 years of experience as an executive and senior leader in the supply chain/logistics industry. Furthermore, I have nearly six years of experience consulting in business management, quality control, con
tinuous improvement, education, and training.

During the same 26 years of my business career, I have been a professional musician - session musician and teacher. I was formally trained at the American Conservatory of Music and the Chicago Musical College, both located in Chicago. I won the Presidential Scholarship in Classical Guitar Performance at the American Conservatory of Music and another full-ride scholarship in Classical Guitar Performance to attend the Chicago Musical College.

My primary Classical Guitar Instructor at both institutions was Paul Henry. I also studied Rock Guitar with Dave Uhrich while attending both institutions and privately studied Jazz Guitar with Scott Reed. I studied voice with Audrey Evans at the American Conservatory of Music and Robert Long at the Chicago Musical College.

I have participated in Classical Guitar Master Classes with:
• Hubert Kappel
• Dale Kavanagh
• Eleftheria Kotzia
• Bruce Holzman
• Stephen Aron
• Raphaella Smits
• Richard Provost
• Nicholas Goluses
• William Buonocore.

*** Lesson Details ***

I design lessons individually according to the needs and "wants" of each student. I specialize in developing and correcting technique in technique to improve the student's overall skill. Students that dedicate the time and effort each week to practicing see rapid and sustained results.

However, if you have a busy life and merely want to learn guitar for personal enjoyment, I will design your lessons to develop your skill at a pace that works for you, which can fluctuate according to your schedule.

***Young & Special Needs Students***

I teach children as young as 13 years old and adults to the age of 70 years old. When teaching younger children and individuals with special needs, it is significantly beneficial for parents to attend each lesson - I have parent seating available. When parent(s) attend lessons, the parent can assist the younger student while practicing during the week at home.

In my experience, the overall musical development and progress of younger students improve considerably when parents are involved.

***Thoughts on Musical Talent***

Musical talent is a wonderful gift, but correct technique is not easily acquired without proper instruction. Your skill level eventually plateaus and your ability to learn and perform more complicated music is inhibited, unless you have a solid foundation in music theory as it applies to your instrument(s) as well as proper technique.

I can help you build this solid foundation and will guide you through the development of musical skills; correcting flaws in technique is my specialty.

*** Studio Equipment ***

GUITARS & BASSES: Gibson, Charvel, Fender, Peavey, Cordoba, Guild, Takamine, Yamaha

GUITAR & BASS AMPS: Blackstar, Egnater, Fender, Line 6, Peavey, Roland, and Behringer

MICS: Mojave Audio, AKG, Audio Technica, CAD Audio, Rode, Sennheiser, Shure, Studio Projects, and Yamaha

KEYBOARDS & SYNTHESIZERS: Korg, Roland, Yamaha, Casio

DRUMS: Pearl, Roland Digital

OUTBOARD GEAR: Universal Audio, JDK Audio, Alesis, Art, Audio Logic, Behringer, and Studio Projects

SOFTWARE: Cakewalk Sonar Platinum, Universal Audio UAD-2 Quad Flexi DSP, Soundtoys Bundle, Celemony Melodyne, Slate Digital FG-X, Steven Slate Drums Platinum, Antares Auto-Tune, Aspire, Antares Articulator, Choir, Harmony Engine, Throat, WAVES Waverider, OneKnob Series Bundle, CLA Artist & Kramer Signature, XLN Audio Addictive Drums, BBE Sonic Maximizer, Line 6 POD Farm 2.5 w/multiple packs

TakeLessons Articles I've Written:

Tips for Parents: Help Your Child Succeed in their Music Lessons
http://takelessons.com/blog/parents-help-children-succeed

Improving Guitar Technique
http://takelessons.com/blog/guitar-exercises-for-technique

Why Piano Theory is Important for ALL Musicians
http://takelessons.com/blog/piano-theory-for-all-musicians

Guitar Basics: Technique
http://takelessons.com/blog/guitar-technique

How to Play the Song "Breathe" by Ana Nalick on Guitar
http://takelessons.com/blog/cool-songs-to-learn-on-guitar-breathe
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Reviews
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Tiffany S. October 17, 2017
· Drum · Online
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Stefano &. June 2, 2017
· Guitar · Online
Blake not only knows his stuff but he also knows how to teach. Phenomenal teacher.
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Antoinette May 11, 2017
· Singing · Online
Excellent instructions
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Blake C.

Blake C.

Lowell, IN 46356
(26)
starting at
$18 / 15-min

About Susan L.

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Palos Park, IL
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About Susan
LOVE TEACHING YOUNG CHILDREN AS WELL AS ADULTS
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Reviews
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Tess M. September 5, 2016
· Piano · In home
Timely
Patient
Knowledgeable
Nice
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Marty D. July 12, 2016
· Piano · In home
Kind, down to earth, relatable to kids and adults and a GREAT teacher!
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Erica B. March 24, 2016
· Piano · In studio
Susan is very friendly and makes you feel comfortable, great teacher!
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Susan L.

Susan L.

Palos Park, IL 60464
(3)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Matt B.

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Chicago, IL

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About Matt
I earned a Bachelor's of Music in Classical Guitar Performance from Capital University in Columbus, OH.

I currently teach private guitar lessons, sing and play guitar in the Chicago rock band Dead Parade, and transcribe music professionally for a wide variety of clients. Occasionally, I write articles or do interviews that appear in magazines such as Guitar World. In the past, I worked for 8 years as a guitar teacher, transcriber, consultant, and free-lance writer for a popular subscription guitar site. I also served as a guitar instructor/lecturer at Capital University's Community Music School under the direction of renowned music educator Dr. Rebecca Johnson. Over the duration of my 18 year teaching career, I have taught over 1000 students of all ages and levels of experience.
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Reviews
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Janice January 18, 2018
· Guitar · In studio
Matt is EXCEPTIONAL with kids. Both of my girls take lessons with him, and they LOVE it. He’s very patient and kind and really has a knack for explaining things to kids in a way that’s fun, interesting, and easy to understand.
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David January 15, 2018
· Bass Guitar · In studio
Matt is insanely talented. It's pretty crazy. He plays guitar, bass, sings, writes music, engineers, transcribes, etc...He does it all and can teach you how to do it in a very easy to understand and logical manner. Hire Matt! You won't regret it!!!
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Joan October 28, 2017
· Acoustic Guitar · In studio
Matt's a great teacher! I learned so much and had a great time too. He's really friendly and make's the learning environment a really comfortable space.
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Matt B.

Matt B.

Chicago, IL 60622
(59)
starting at
$35 / 30-min
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About Blake C.

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Lowell, IN
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About Blake
Hi there! My Name is Blake C. II, I am 18 years old and I have been teaching guitar with my father, Blake Sr. of Blake C. Music, since 2012. Through these last few years working with my father, I have had the opportunity to teach people of all ages; children all the way up to adults who have been playing longer than I have been alive!

I have had the great fortune of having a dad who has been playing for over 30 years in all genres: rock, blues, classical, country, etc. My dad has taught me not only how to play guitar, but how to teach it to others in a way that makes sense; a way that makes learning guitar fun.

One major thing I have taken away from working, learning, and teaching with my dad is that technique is key! We do not teach to keep you coming back for years and years, we teach you how to ultimately learn by yourself usin
g the skills we have taught you.

Without practical application of the skills we teach, lessons would be a bore. So, many times we find songs that exemplify the skill we are working on. This makes the learning process fun and educational at the same time!

Equipment:

GUITARS & BASSES: Gibson, Charvel, Fender, Peavey, Cordoba, Guild, Takamine, Yamaha

GUITAR & BASS AMPS: Blackstar, Egnater, Fender, Line 6, Peavey, Roland, and Behringer

MICS: Mojave Audio, AKG, Audio Technica, CAD Audio, Rode, Sennheiser, Shure, Studio Projects, and Yamaha

KEYBOARDS & SYNTHESIZERS: Korg, Roland, Yamaha, Casio

DRUMS: Pearl, Roland Digital

OUTBOARD GEAR: Universal Audio, JDK Audio, Alesis, Art, Audio Logic, Behringer, and Studio Projects

SOFTWARE: Cakewalk Sonar Platinum, Cakewalk Sonar X3 Producer, Universal Audio UAD-2 Quad Flexi DSP, Soundtoys Bundle, Celemony Melodyne, Slate Digital FG-X, Steven Slate Drums Platinum, Antares Auto-Tune, Aspire, Antares Articulator, Choir, Harmony Engine, Throat, WAVES Waverider, OneKnob Series Bundle, CLA Artist & Kramer Signature, XLN Audio Addictive Drums, BBE Sonic Maximizer, Line 6 POD Farm 2.5 w/multiple packs
...
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Blake C.

Blake C.

Lowell, IN 46356
starting at
$15 / 15-min

About Josh L.

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Chicago, IL
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About Josh
Hi, there! My name is Josh, and I can't wait to meet you! I am fairly new to private teaching and am looking forward to helping my students get a good solid start with either piano, or improvised theatre. I studied theatre in Philadelphia at the University of the Arts, and I trained at the IO theatre in Chicago for improvised theatre. I studied jazz piano with Dr. Joe Utterback in Stratford, CT. I've been performing in Chicago as an improvisor and mucisian for about 4 years. I'm a relaxed and friendly person and my teaching style is very much based on what you want to accomplish, though I'd be happy to make suggestions. I really look forward to helping you reach your goals!

Best!

Josh L.
...
Reviews
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Charlie M. November 30, 2017
· Piano · In home
My 10-year old son Charlie had a great first lesson with Josh. He accomplished a lot in his session and Charlie is excited for the next lessons. Josh is very patient and kind.
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Alexa July 18, 2016
· Piano · In home
Alexa was excited to take lessons with Josh and really enjoyed them!
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David March 19, 2016
· Piano · In home
Josh was very helpful for a beginner like myself. He got me started on my path.
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Josh L.

Josh L.

Chicago, IL 60645
(8)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

About Hunter D.

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Chicago, IL

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About Hunter
My primary teaching philosophy revolves around the idea of creativity and cooperative problem solving. I believe that all musicians should be actively training their ears as well as their abilities on their instrument. I focus on all elements of basic musicianship while incorporating improvisation and composition in an inspiring way.

I grew up playing jazz, soul, R&B, folk, reggae, ska, funk, and classical music. I feel very comfortable working within all of these genres in both performance and educational atmospheres.

Regardless of age, learning a new instrument or art form can be daunting, so I like to include some sort of entertaining activities to keep tension low and inspiration high.
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Reviews
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Sloan November 15, 2017
· Flute · In home
Exceeded our expectations! He was engaging, smart and fun with my daughter. She loved the time with him and can't wait for her next lesson.
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Keely July 13, 2017
· Piano · In home
Excellent first lesson. Hunter is a fun, knowledgeable teacher. I look forward to more lessons.
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Charlie M. April 27, 2017
· Saxophone · In studio
My lesson with Hunter was absolutely fantastic. Such a great guy, and supremely knowledgable, and patient with beginners like me.
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Hunter D.

Hunter D.

Chicago, IL 60608
(3)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About James P.

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Chicago, IL
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About James
I recently graduated from DePaul University with a degree in Music Performance where I studied under Chicago Symphony Bass Trombonist, Charlie Vernon, and Lyric Opera Trombonist, Mark Fisher. Prior to moving to Chicago for college, I lived and grew up in Houston, Texas where I studied under long time Houston Symphony Trombonist, John McCroskey, and current Orlando Philharmonic Trombonist, Joel Brown.

During my time in Chicago, I have performed with dozens of ensembles and organizations such as the Classical Symphony Orchestra of Chicago, the Salt Creek Chamber Orchestra, Lakeview Orchestra, and Windy City Winds, among others. I also just recently auditioned for, and won a position with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, the premiere training orchestra of the Chicago Symphony, and my appointment will begin in September of 2017.

I consider m
y training and performance experiences here in Chicago to be instrumental in my philosophy when it comes to teaching the trombone. A strong fundamental basis to playing is something that I have focused on more and more over the years, and as time goes by, I notice an enormous difference in my consistency in playing. Developing a mastery of breathing techniques, tone quality, sound production, and lip slurs allows you to perform anything you have on your music stand at an exceptionally high level. My style of teaching gives you a strong foundation for your playing by honing in on the development of these fundamentals.

This isn't to say that we will not have time to work on repertoire as well! Every student should have SOMETHING to work towards at all times! Whether it be an upcoming audition, a recital, a concert, or just a performance for your parents, having deadlines and showing dedication in meeting them shows great discipline and allows you to track your progress in a very tactile manner. We will be able to take our strong foundation that we build together and apply it to your repertoire in a way that will revolutionize how you approach music!
...
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James P.

James P.

Chicago, IL 60660
starting at
$25 / 30-min

About Eric H.

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Chicago, IL
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About Eric
I enjoy sharing my love of music by helping others embark on their musical journeys. I am a strong supporter of using a combination of aural training and sightreading to boost musicality and finesse.

In the past 6 years, I have taught students of all ages, ranging from children to seniors. You are never ever too old to learn the piano or the violin. You may not be the next Chopin, but with practice and dedication, you will eventually be able to play the mass majority of piano/violin repertoire.

Strong fundamentals (scales/chords/arpeggios) are important, but I also remember to make music fun and not boring by providing diverse selections of supplemental (pop/ragtime/blues) pieces.
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Shreya January 11, 2018
· · In studio
Extremely patient & encouraging with beginning students.
Thumb_118185_pi_out%20at%20the%20ranch%20of%20maguey%20in%20mexico%20Elana%20Axay%20leocaudia%20and%20me
Michael O. December 2, 2017
· Piano · Online
very helpful, encouraging, reassuring,
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Dan November 29, 2017
· Classical Piano · In studio
Eric knows a wide range of repertoire and we listened to various pieces by different composers and genres to see what music I like. As someone who is very new to classical music, he prevented piano learning from being too overwhelming. He challenges you so you can reach higher and help you do your best.
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Eric H.

Eric H.

Chicago, IL 60661
(15)
starting at
$24.75 / 21-min

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