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Minneapolis Piano Lessons - Making Music in a City Full of Talent

By Beth V. - Minneapolis Piano Teacher

During my final year at Berklee College of Music, I often thought of how lucky some of my fellow classmates were to call places like New York, Los Angeles or Nashville their hometowns. Many Berklee graduates take that stressful step of moving to an unfamiliar city known for its abundance in arts culture, but for others that’s simply a familiar place called home. After finishing my undergraduate degree in Boston, I also moved back to my hometown of Minneapolis/St. Paul to begin my career as a professional musician. I’d like to share with you today how lucky musicians are to have these Twin Cities and all the potential resources available to students taking Minneapolis piano lessons.

The Minneapolis/St. Paul region is filled with professional artists, musical and otherwise. I’m
not talking about hobbyists, although there are plenty of hobbyists and part-timers living here who contribute to our wonderful culture. I’m talking about full-time, profitable, top-notch craftsmen who have built their careers on their own creativity. If you don’t believe me, check out MN Original, a television show dedicated to exploring local artists.

I know what you’re saying – “Wow, I had no idea snowy old Minnesota would have enough artists and musicians locally to build an entire television series around them. Is there something in the water over there?” Close. It’s built into the school system. In addition to the dozens of music colleges in the area, Minnesota has arguably one of the most organized and detailed set of guidelines for the arts in K-12 public schools. A quick glance at the Academic Standards for Music Education posted on the Minnesota Department of Education website shows that Minnesotans not only value music education, but have the resources to deliver it properly.

We also have one of the most influential private companies in music right here, just 9 miles outside of Minneapolis. MakeMusic Inc. is the producer of Finale, the world’s leading music notation software, and SmartMusic interactive learning software. If you’re a musician, you’re no doubt using a music notation program such as Sibelius or Finale. Finale and I share the same home town, and they are extremely dedicated to delivering tools to enhance musicianship all over the world.

Many Minnesota musicians have achieved fame on a national or international level. You may have heard of Minneapolis artists such as Prince, Bob Dylan, the Jayhawks, Johnny Lang, Brother Ali, the Jets, or Morris Day and the Times. I personally live for the local artists that are HUGE right here at home. The Wolverines Big Band has been in operation for decades. The rhythm section, also known as the Wolverines Trio, has been together for over 20 years. Dr. Mambo’s Combo has been playing their steady weekly Sunday + Monday gig at Bunkers for 30 years, schooling the town in Funk, Rhythm and Blues. It’s an easy place to catch Michael Bland (Prince’s drummer). The famous Wabasha Street Caves, once a safe haven for world-renowned mobsters, now host swing night every Thursday featuring the best local Big Bands week after week. Yes, the underground swing dancing culture is alive and well in Minneapolis.

Whether you have dreams to pursue a serious music career or simply embrace a new hobby by taking Minneapolis piano lessons, this is the place to live. There’s work here. There’s play here. There are resources here. There is education here. Many people here - from private music instructors to software developers - are also professional gigging musicians. A simple search on the TakeLessons website for a Minneapolis piano lessons instructor pulls up many diverse and qualified choices in the Twin Cities area, not just one or two. Do not hesitate to get involved in music! I may not be from Los Angeles or New York, but quite honestly I think that’s why I have such a rich career in music - because I’m from the Twin Cities.
...
Mary S. Saint Paul, MN

About Mary

I began taking piano lessons on a whim in middle school, but it didn't take long before I realized I was completely in love with music. I enjoy playing and teaching many types of music, from classical to rock to hymns and church music. I learned to play by ear at the same time I learned to sight read, and both approaches have helped me to learn and enjoy the music I play. I graduated in December 2010 with a BA in Music Performance from North Central University, here in the Twin Cities. I have been teaching piano lessons for the last 6 years, as well as directing a children's choir. Watching other people learn to play music is one of the greatest rewards I've received. *** Lesson Details *** I believe music has incredible educational value, but I also believe that it should ...

Reviews

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Jen W. December 2, 2013
Piano
Verified Student
Mary is EXCELLENT

Mary has been teaching my daughter Ava piano for the past year and a half. Ava loves lessons every week and practices without being asked. Mary is supportive while still challenging Ava. Highly recommend Mary!
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Donald L. May 3, 2013
Piano
Verified Student
A gifted teacher for teaching Piano Lessons

Mary has inspired my daughter Joanne to want to play piano. She has a way of balancing what the kids like to play and what the parents want in a music lesson for their kids. Joanne has not lost interest like we thought she might, but has wanted to Accelerate learning piano. She gets them playing music right away and then little by little explains more and more about music itself. It is an all-around winning strategy, especially when teaching kids.
Thank Mary
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Pankil P. September 13, 2012
Verified Student
Great teacher

Mary was able to help me get a basic understanding of the piano and help me to read music. Mary did a terrific job of using my strengths to make it easier for me to learn to play the piano better.
Melody M. Minneapolis, MN

Piano lessons will help you develop the basic skills of keyboard (piano) playing, keyboard techniques (posture, hand position, fingering, etc.) and sight reading.
1. Develop the basic skills of keyboard (piano) playing;
2. Freely engage in creative expression; and
explore the technical elements of music.
3. Perform keyboard pieces applying basic reading and coordinative skills.
4. Create and play from memory any assignment required by the performer.

About Melody

Are you looking to sing or play keyboard, work on material for your band, build your repertoire, sing or play in the church choir/band, audition for a production, become a better lead singer in your rock or pop band, overcome stage-fright or wanting to get to the next level? You have come to the right place! My lessons provide students with an opportunity to deeply explore the voice, build confidence, and to develop healthy and effective singing practices, which can be applied to any style of musical singing and playing. A well-rounded music education is very important and I have fun and educational resources for learning vocal technique, ear training, harmony, pitch matching and music theory. I am very fortunate to have performed and studied Classical and Opera, musical theater

Reviews

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Suzanne K. February 5, 2015
Singing · In home
Verified Student
Melody makes lessons really fun and age appropriate. My 9 yr old daughter is enjoys her and loves going.
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Karen D. December 10, 2014
Singing · In studio
Verified Student
Melody is professional and makes me feel at ease. Each session is packed with knowledge and related goals to focus on for the next time. I enjoy my time with her!
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Lee E. November 29, 2014
Singing · In studio
Verified Student
Melody is so much fun. She is easy to connect with and discovers the strengths of the student. She then balances that out with finding what needs work and go from there...very individualized and full of passion!
Beau J. Saint Paul, MN

Also, every good musician should have a basic knowledge of the keyboard by being able to pound out chords, play some melodies, and even know a decent number of songs.

About Beau

Hello, My name is Beau. The bass guitar is a great passion of mine and I am excited to share my knowledge and experience with others. I am eager to teach as well as continue my own personal journey as a musician. Initially self-taught, I attended McNally Smith College of Music in St. Paul, MN where I earned a degree in Bass Performance studying under Terry Burns, Gary Raynor, Jay Young, Jeff Bailey, and Charles Fletcher. I have been performing professionally in various original and cover/variety/wedding bands for over 6 years. I also have extensive studio performance experience constructing and recording bass lines of many different styles. My band, The Fontanelles, have been successfully writing, recording, and performing original music in the Twin Cities for the last three years.

Jacob A. Minneapolis, MN

About Jacob

Hi everyone. If you're reading this, that means you're taking the time to consider music lessons for yourself or a family member, which is fantastic. Most people play music because of one simple reason - it's fun. The fun and excitement of playing a song for the first time is a great experience that you don't forget. The benefits that musical study has on an individual, both young and old, are too many to list in full here. It provides a fun, relaxing hobby, it keeps the mind sharp, people who study music tend to do better in school and work, it can bring one out of a sad mood, it is a fun social activity....... the list goes on and on! As someone who has studied music for 25 years and taught for nearly 10, I understand the reasons why people become interested in ...

Reviews

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Chris M. October 29, 2013
Piano
Verified Student
Effective, pleasant, encouraging.

I am an adult student. Jacob has been great. Timely, responsible, motivational, interesting, knowledgeable, encouraging, extremely accomplished (PhD), creative (varying music styles), etc. I highly recommend him.
Yasmin B. Minneapolis, MN

Classical theory, technique, pop, rock, classical genres. Tailored to suit student's goals and level of devotion. Learn how to practice to learn challenging musical passages.

About Yasmin

I studied classical piano and theory with Sr. Cecile Amore, jazz theory and mellophone with be-bop saxophonist John Mastroianni, jazz piano with Noreen Grey Sauls, and jazz history with the late Bill Finegan- big-band leader and acclaimed arranger for Tommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller. I enjoy playing classical music (primarily Mozart, Beethoven and Chopin) tango, and pop songs as well. I have played keyboards and bass guitar professionally and enjoyed some commercial recognition in California when invited to open for a well known Bay Area band ("Foxboro Hot Tubs" a.k.a. "Green Day") at The Roxy and a handful of other west coast venues. My music students are introduced to basic music theory, notation, and technique to enable them to play fun, simple melodies after the first lesson, and

Reviews

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Karen G. January 28, 2015
Piano · In studio
Verified Student
Yasmin is engaging, goes to where I need to go to learn, and gives good coaching. She is really good at tailoring my learning to what is meaningful to me.
William B. Minneapolis, MN

Despite the fact that I'm primarily a percussionist, I've been playing piano for even longer, 15+ years, in fact. I graduated with a degree in Music Education and Performance from Berklee College of Music. I'm willing and fully capable of teaching beginning to intermediate piano students, and I have 500+ hours of experience student teaching, working with students at the elementary and high school levels. No matter what piano skills you want to work on, I'm happy to help!

About William

I'm a recent graduate from Berklee College of Music where I studied Music Performance (for Drum Set) and Music Education. I've studied under great teachers including Rod Morgenstein, Bob Gripp, Henrique De Almeida, Eric LeVan, Jackie Santos, Steve Wilkes, and the list goes on. I also have experience performing in a wide variety of contexts and genres. In your lessons with me I will help you to achieve any musical goals you have as well as to take your current skills up to the next level and beyond. I have a wealth of knowledge about music theory and teaching methodology, as well as experience in execution of these skills. Your lessons with me will be fun as well as informative, and if you are willing to put in the work I can guarantee you will make progress as my student. *** ...

Reviews

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Lynette K. May 5, 2014
Drum
Verified Student
An excited learning experience

I have had lessons for a month with Billy, and will continue to study with him in future. He is an excellent teacher. Nothing to neat pick, everything is just amazing. He taught every single details of what I should know about drumming, recommended a really helpful textbook to me, and even helped to make my practice a great fun other than a dull work for a beginner. I really appreciate those. If someone is expecting to have an effective and pleasing learning experience, just go ahead try to work with Billy. It is absolutely worth the time and effort. Hope that'd be helpful.

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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!

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Recent Piano Articles from the Blog

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

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