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Want to Make it as a Musician in L.A.? Try Piano!

By Dorothea G. - Los Angeles Piano Teacher

So you want to be an awesome musician. Do you believe you will? Because that’s half of the effort right there – believing it. If you already do, then skip to the last paragraph of this article. But if you’re unsure, keep reading…

When you take piano lessons in Los Angeles, your success is within “Arm’s Reach.” I composed a song with that title on my piano recently, and licensed it to a feature film. I never forget how amazing it is that what pours out of my mind and my heart (and all over my piano) migh
t actually be heard in a movie or TV show, or on someone else’s DVD player. I used to think that was all dreaming. That it was impossible. But why did I ever think that way?

My only enemy was the idea of “impossible.” But it’s NOT impossible - it’s a reality for me. So when I reflected on where that idea came from, I traced it back to loving friends and family who thought they were protecting me from delusions of grandeur. They told me, in so many words, not to set myself up for failure.

Let’s just clear this up here and now. There is no failure. There are only course corrections. I know this from years of practice and from teaching piano lessons. If my students thought of every wrong note as a failure, they would quit after the first two minutes of trying. So I help them to correct their course - note by note, chord by chord. It’s no different with our thinking – or with our life journey for that matter. We choose a song to learn. We make a thousand course corrections in the learning process. And then…we PLAY IT! If we believe we can, we will.

I chose piano because it was my passion, and it became my way of overcoming the impossible. Like no other instrument, you can hear an entire symphony on a piano! That’s why the genius composers of old were pianists. Do you hear simple melodies in your mind? Or do you hear multi-layered symphonic brilliance? In either case, you can make it real on a piano.

Okay, so you’re an awesome musician now - even if only in your mind. Now it’s time to find an instructor who can show you how to make that awesomeness live in the world, starting local piano lessons. Remember, once it’s locked into your mind, nothing is impossible.
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LeAnna S.

Los Angeles, CA

I have been teaching piano lessons for all levels for 9 years and focus on the joy of learning music. Lessons are concise, fun and relaxed as you learn proper technique like finger exercises and conclude with playing a song of your choice. I use the Bastien Piano Basic Book Series for my lessons, as well as teach songs orally.

About LeAnna

Hello, welcome to my profile and thank you for taking the time to check it out. I am happy to introduce myself to you and share that teaching the performing arts is one of the greatest joys of my life. I am a performing artist and teacher in Los Angeles, teaching a variety of classes from music, dance and theatre. I graduated from San Francisco State University in 2009 where I received a BA in Classical Music, a BA in Dance with a focus in choreography, and a minor in Multi-Cultural Theatre. I have such a strong, well-rounded background in many styles because I value creative exploration. As a vocalist, I studied classical voice since I was 16 years old, trained at SFSU and La Universidad de Catolica in Santiago, Chile and consider that as strong foundation, but always explored ...

Reviews

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sarah A. April 15, 2015
Piano · In studio
Verified Student
she is the BEST !!
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Jessica A. March 18, 2015
Piano · In home
Verified Student
Awesome lesson! LeAnna is so nice and so amazing!
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Julia L. February 12, 2015
Speaking Voice · In studio
Verified Student
LeAnna is a very thoughtful and mindful instructor. The lessons with LeAnna are organized and structured in a way that strategically presents the information to the student. I feel that LeAnna brings herself and her experience into all the lessons she teaches and is just wonderful!
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Tanisha H.

Los Angeles, CA

Overall basic piano technique, vocal placement, harmony, music theory.

About Tanisha

Tanisha is a graduate of the prestigious Berklee College of Music's Vocal and Music Business programs. Since arriving to Los Angeles, Tanisha has built a solid career providing artist development services to professional entertainers, recording artists and actors. Her services include vocal coaching, piano lessons, music theory, songwriting, performance development, media and stage training. Tanisha is also an accomplished songwriter. She is currently co-writing an upcoming project with platinum selling recording artist Shanice Wilson. In addition to teaching music, Tanisha has enjoyed a successful career in the entertainment industry working with top tier performers such as Chaka Khan, The Black Eyed Peas, Montell Jordan and Babyface to name a few. Accompanying her is a staff of ...

Reviews

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Queena S. May 22, 2015
Opera Voice · In studio
Verified Student
Though it was my first lesson, I didn't do anything that pertained to opera.
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Laura S. April 22, 2015
Singing · Online
Verified Student
I came in with a song I'm trying to learn for a chorus and Tanisha jumped right in on the first lesson with some amazing and specific instruction. Can't wait until my next lesson!
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sheri H. January 27, 2015
Singing · Online
Verified Student
The best vocal coach my daughter has ever had. Very sweet, and knowledgeable of music and vocal training.
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Brian P.

Culver City, CA

About Brian

Brian discovered his talent and passion for teaching while still in college, and has been teaching guitar and piano in Southern California for over 20 years. Gifted at teaching students of all ages and abilities, he combines patience, creativity, imagination and boundless enthusiasm with solid professional training and experience. Brian also has over 10 years experience teaching piano and guitar to blind and autistic students. A lifelong musician, Brian received his first musical training at the age of 4 and 5 years when his actor/singer Dad and musically talented Grandma taught him to sing and play the mandolin. He began piano lessons at age 5, and formal guitar instruction at the age of 10 years. By the time he was a 14-year-old high school student, Brian was performing as lead

Reviews

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Pietro N. April 12, 2015
Guitar · In home
Verified Student
Very good first lesson...great way of teaching. Very clear and patient.
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Anderson S May 14, 2014
Guitar Teacher

Brian's teaching approach is concise but very relaxed. His lessons are easy to follow and relevant to life encounters. As a member of the super seniors and a first time guitar students his teaching has given me hope of become a good guitar player.
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Derek H. March 6, 2014
Verified Student
Patient and Caring

Our experience with Brian as piano teacher to our two children has been incredible. He has brought each of them along at their own pace and they have learned to play very well. Brian has always been patient and kind.
This has been particularly important with our (now) 8 year old son who is autistic. He can get easily distracted, frustrated, bored, or just plain ornery and uncooperative. Mr. Brian has always exhibited great patience toward him, taking breaks when necessary and generally bringing our son along at his own pace--and our son has shown remarkable progress.
We highly recommend Brian as a piano teacher.
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Seth D.

Inglewood, CA

I have been teaching over sixteen years.

I tailor each individual lesson to that persons goals, needs, wants, and styles.

My goal is to learn music the fun way. Along the way we'll learn theory, chords, scales, ear training, composition, reading music, tempo etc.

About Seth

Seth is available for one on one lessons on Saxophone, Clarinet, Piano, Guitar, Vocals and Music Theory. Available to all styles, ages and levels in your home or mine in Los Angeles, CA. Lessons are tailored to the individual styles and goals. Seth has been teaching for over sixteen years primarily working with children. He has worked with Grammy winning producers, touring musicians, helping them hone up on there music theory, and piano chops. He graduated from the prestigious Lamont School Of Music with a Bachelor’s of Music in music composition. *** Lesson Details *** Lessons are tailored to the individuals styles and goals! I teach all styles with focus on having fun. Theory, Reading Music, Ear Training, Chords etc. *** Travel Equipment *** I don't provide equipment, ...

Reviews

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Michael Z. February 4, 2015
Singing · Online
I have been using your advice every time I practice. Again, I am extremely grateful for the advice you have given me: I have improved more in these last few days than in the weeks of practicing before our lesson. I was looking for a male vocal coach who had experience, and that is exactly what I needed!

Thank you for your time,
Michael Zhitnitsky
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Michael H. February 4, 2015
Music Recording · In studio
Hey Seth, Thank you so much for the great work you did engineering the recordings for Martini & Olive. We shot the videos today and the tracks were perfect. Had a blast working with you and hope to create more music with you soon. And your Triumph was pretty terrific a well. Cheers

Had a great recording session with Seth this week. He gave us good direction and really finessed our vocals and timing on the final recordings. Thank you Seth!

-Judy of Martini and Olive
Seth worked with us (Martini & Olive) engineering our Medleys — and he was patient inciteful and so helpful — massaging our intricate comedy melodies for our music video. We are a quirky fast funny funky lounge act and he understood our concerns musically and comically. We spent hours with him and he was a joy the entire time. Thanks Seth!
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Kelly Y. February 4, 2015
Piano · In home
Seth is working with my 9 year old and my 6 year old and is just great. He’s the perfect blend of classical and cool, which goes over well with the kids, inspiring a love of music while really learning form and technique. He’s also giving me refresher lessons so it’s good to see him work with all three levels at one time. We highly recommend Seth!
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Paul T.

Inglewood, CA

Students can opt for traditional style learning using one of the popular piano methods of study to tackle the technical, theoretical knowledge, and sight readings skills necessary to become a great pianist.

Students that have already tried this approach and either found success or failure may also decide to learn with a custom tailored approach which mainly focusses on improvisation techniques, and learning by ear. Students are guided toward developing good musicianship whether choosing to focus on jazz, classical, gospel and blues, or pop and rock styles of playing.

About Paul

I am a firm believer in the power of music to heal, entertain, and teach. It is our first and most vital universal human language and as such, I believe we all have the ability to learn how to communicate beautifully with music to express our deepest feelings. As a teacher it is my privilege and pleasure to help you develop. From classical violin to jazz piano my early musical education not only spanned genres and instruments but also geographically from Austin Texas to Madison Wisconsin and finally brought me to Los Angeles where I currently reside and work teaching and playing in several bands. I embrace this diversity as I embrace my own mixed Peruvian and American cultural heritage. Helping you or your child reach your musical dreams in a friendly-nurturing environment ...

Reviews

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Beatriz B. April 23, 2014
Piano
Verified Student
Have learned so much and more to learn

Paul is very passionate about music and teaching in general. He does a fantastic job when it comes to instructing and I'm excited to see future progress within my skills. I Definitely recommend him for great music taste and for creating a good atmosphere with his students.
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MichaelK1 October 19, 2011
GREAT TEACHER

Paul is an attentive, intelligent and multi talented instructor - highly recommended.
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PatriciaW October 10, 2011
Max

Max wanted me to tell you that today he practiced really well, stayed focused, and enjoyed himself! Thank you, Patricia

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Piano Lesson Reviews from Students

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Free Piano Lessons with an Expert Teacher

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

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

Video #1: Intro to the Piano

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

Video #2:
Piano Basics

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

Video #3:
Reading Piano Notes

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

Video #4:
Time and Key Signatures

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

Video #5:
Understanding Rhythm

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

Sign up below to get free access to all 20 videos in the piano lesson series!

Thank you for your submission.

Recent Piano Articles from the Blog

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

How Often Should You Tune a Piano?

Just as you go to the doctor for check-ups from time to time, your piano needs maintenance and care throughout its life. You may notice, especially if you have a keen ear or a tendency to sing along with your practice, that your piano drops in pitch, particularly during the summer and winter months. This is because your piano is mostly made of wood, and your wooden soundboard will contract when the weather is drier -- or the heating is on! -- and cause the pitch of the strings to drop. While kn … Read More
How Often Should You Tune a Piano?
Just as you go to the doctor for check-ups from time to time, your piano needs maintenance and care throughout its life. You may notice, especially if you have a keen ear or a tendency to sing along with your practice, that your piano drops in pitch, particularly during the summer and winter months. This is because your piano is mostly made of wood, and your wooden soundboard will contract when the weather is drier -- or the heating is on! -- and cause the pitch of the strings to drop. While kn
Kawai vs. Yamaha: Who Makes Better Pianos?
Getting ready to buy your first piano, but not sure which manufacturer to look into? Here, St. Augustine, FL teacher Heather L. shares a bit about two of the best piano brands...   Two of the first questions that I get from parents of my piano students are "What kind of piano should I get?" and "What are the best piano brands?" The facts of the matter are that our modern piano is a 19th century invention about which many people, even pianists, don't know a lot about, and the curre
Renew Your Motivation With These 5 Inspiring Videos for Pianists
Feeling stuck? Take a break from your piano practice and try something new. Here, St. Augustine, FL teacher Heather L. shares five incredibly inspiring piano videos to renew your excitement...   For new pianists, the importance of inspiration should not be underestimated. Listening to and watching great musicians, especially live music, is just as critical to your success as piano practice itself. Most of the pianists whom I know, including myself, could probably point to several musi
Piano Inspiration: 7-Year-Old Piano Prodigy Set to Release His First Album
When seven-year-old Jacob Velazquez sits at the piano bench his feet barely touch the floor, but he doesn't let that stop him. Jacob has been taking piano lessons since he was just four years old and has been called by many a “child prodigy” and “baby Beethoven.” But how did Jacob become such a skilled pianist at such a young age? It all started with a natural talent and a lot of practice. Who is Jacob Velazquez? Jacob is a classical pianist from Pembroke Pines, Florida. After hearing his f
3 Handy Websites for Finding Piano Notes for Songs | Piano Sheet Music
Playing piano doesn't have to be limited to practicing scales and chords. You can have a lot of fun if you find the piano notes for songs on the radio or classic pop and rock tunes you've always liked, and go from there! This is a great way to break up the monotony of rigorous practice, and keep yourself motivated and having fun as you learn how to play. Finding piano notes for songs isn't usually that hard, either - you just have to know the right places to look. Here are a few of our favorite

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