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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.

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Lauren H.

Saint Paul, MN

Piano lesson repertoire is chosen by you! If you want to play a classic, a holiday song, or what's on the radio, I'll guide you how to play it while giving you the techniques and basics in a way that is easy and fun.

About Lauren

Lauren graduated from McNally Smith College of Music magna cum laude in 2011 with a bachelors in vocal performance. She played everywhere from Duluth. Minnesota to Lima, Peru: sharing the stage with artists as diverse as Andres Prado and Judi Donaghy. In addition to her McNally Smith Degree, Lauren received master classes from Bobby McFerrin and the New York Voices. Passionate about giving back to the community, Lauren instructed voice and piano students at the Urban Hub, a community center for inner city youth in Minneapolis MN. She spent the last 6 months of 2011 as an instructor at Jazz Jau
s in Lima, Peru. She taught music theory, history, songwriting, and applied voice at ex'treme Institute by Nelly in St. Louis, MO for 3 years. She recently moved back to the Twin Cities to perform and teach.

*** Lesson Details ***
Every student has an experience unique to themselves. I am strict about meeting the goals developed by each student. However, the learning process is highly individual. You will learn at a pace and with a curriculum we develop to best suit your learning style, musical preference, and goals.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I expect students will have a keyboard or piano.

*** Specialties ***
Trained 10 years in classical voice and piano.
Undergrad in contemporary voice.
12 years of theatre experience
...

Reviews

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Macy December 30, 2016
Singing · In studio
Verified Student
My daughter has been with Lauren for a month now and she is loving it
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Rex December 6, 2016
Singing · In studio
Verified Student
Lauren is an exceptionally talented instructor. I am looking forward to the continued refinement of my singing voice.
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Alex August 12, 2016
Piano · In studio
Verified Student
Lauren has been a great piano teacher for our 8yrs old. She proves the appropriate amount of encouragement and challenge based on the student skill level. I would definitely recommend her!
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Lauren H.

Lauren H.

Saint Paul, MN 55104
(7)
starting at
$35 / 30-min
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Mary S.

Minneapolis, MN

About Me
I started taking piano lessons in 8th grade, because my little sister started taking lessons and I didn’t want her to be able to do something I could not! My motivation quickly changed as I began to love the piano and the music I found I could make come from it. Not only did I enjoy the challenges and rewards that came from learning the piano, but the habits of hard work and persistence that I formed along the way have paid off in every part of my life. I graduated with a BA in Music Performance in 2010 from North Central University.

I believe music has incredible educational value, but I also believe that it should be enjoyable. Every student is different and has a different purpose for wanting to learn music. Developing a love for the instrument you play is just as important as developing the technical skills to play it. I do my best as a teacher to learn what it is that students enjoy most about playing and incorporate those aspects into lessons.

Methodology

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 and playing piano for the last 9 years. 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 be enjoyable. Every music student is different and has a different purpose for wanting to learn music, and I enjoy working with students to help them achieve their goals.

Being a well-rounded musician has not only helped me in my music career, but it has helped me experience and enjoy many different kinds of music. I expect students to play different types of music with a main focus on one genre. If you want to learn to play classical music only, I teach sightreading, technical skills, and with a little time and practice you or your child can be playing some of the simpler masterworks by the end of the first year. But I also encourage classical pianist to try out a rock song or improvisation.

The same goes for those who are only interested in learning how to play rock music or church music. Being able to sightread is invaluable to a musician, and after a few lessons on chords and ear-training, I like to introduce basic sight-reading.

Developing a love for the instrument you play is just as important as developing the technical skills to play it. I do my best as a teacher to learn what it is that students enjoy most about playing and incorporate that into lessons.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Home Studio--New Kawai upright

Lino Lakes--Baldwin upright, good condition, and electric piano

*** Specialties ***
I can play and teach in a variety of genres, from classical to pop to church music. I teach students to sight-read, and I can also teach students to play off a chord chart or by ear if these are things that student expresses an interest in.

I've found that the method books available to piano students are thorough and effective, especially for beginning students of elementary age. I've used different books, including Faber & Faber, Alfred, and Hal Leonard. All of these have strengths and weaknesses, and I like to pick the method depending on the personality of the student.
...

Reviews

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Jen W. December 14, 2015
Piano · In home
Verified Student
Mary is a great piano teacher! We are on our 4ht year with her! She is patient and makes it fun for the kids (even the wiggly ones)! My kids never complain about piano lessons which makes it fun for me too!
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Jackie B. December 11, 2015
Verified Student
Mary was awesome! Patient, positive, wonderful teacher. We loved her style. Not pushy but encouraging!
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Neal N. September 19, 2015
Piano · In studio
Verified Student
She's very nice!
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Mary S.

Mary S.

Minneapolis, MN 55404
(11)
starting at
$27 / 30-min
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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 an
d 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 productions, have sang in Rock, Pop, Country, R&B bands and can bring that real-world experience into the lesson. The student will receive real hands-on knowledge about singing in a variety of environments and how to manage his/her vocal goals!

In addition to being vocally healthy, I encourage self-expression and enhance self-esteem in my students: singers of all ages, skill levels and styles. Plus, it has to be fun, otherwise why do it? Singing is a process and less about the end goal and we train the body, mind and use imagination and it's a very exciting process!

***My students regularly receive scholarships and placement in music schools and programs around the U.S., have won competitions, do well in auditions, are performing in successful bands and/or recording artists.

I am energetic and enthusiastic; actively promote values and traditional teaching practices coupled with the introduction of technology into the lesson. My experience as an educator is to share passion and talent for music with the next generation of musicians and outstanding communication skills. I really care about my students and provide the tools to help them reach their goals!

Degrees:
Bachelor of Music, minor in Psychology from Michigan State University
Master of Vocal Pedagogy from Oakland University

Here is some of my experience as a performer: I have sung Internationally at the renowned €œEisteffodd Music Festival€ in Wales, toured through Britain and performed at the Laupin Agile Cabaret in Paris. I was honored with a nomination to attend the prestigious Yale Cabaret Conference and worked with cabaret legend Julie Wilson and Manhattan Transfer founder Laurel Masse. Sung and performed roles with the Mid-Michigan and Detroit Opera Companies. Performed a production of Sleepwalkers€ with the Kari Margolis Brown Company at the O'Shaughnessy Theatre. I currently perform all over the Twin Cities with my own R&B/Soul Band, Melody and The Dramatics!€ Plus, I am a contract vocalist and perform in a variety of other projects, so needless to say, it is all a very awesome ride!

*** Lesson Details ***
My laid-back and fun approach allows for versatility and is tailored to meet the needs of the individual student. When studying the art of singing you are gaining skills, which build confidence.

When you understand what you'€™re doing and why, you bring more confidence to your performance. Progress is made with regular practice outside of lessons. Voice students record each private lesson through their devices and take notes in their own notebooks.

I have "warm-up" tracks which you can use in your car or at home and you will notice significant improvement once you start your routine.

Practicing is very important and I have great methods to teach students how to maximize their time and get the best results! I am privileged to have an opportunity to teach and very passionate about coaching a student to meet his or her musical goals!

Also, I have a Beagle named "Bacon" and he will always be very excited to see you, however he does calm down when you're in the studio. In addition, I have two cats, so please let me know if you have allergies or any special recommendations.

Thanks so much!
Melody

*** Studio Equipment ***
Lessons in the music room, PA system, piano, keyboard, laptop, recording microphone, microphone, mirror.

The house is in a cul-de-sac and there is ample street parking. Also, in the case of a snow emergency, you will be able to park in the driveway.

*** Specialties ***
I teach in a variety of vocal styles including, rock, pop, jazz, country and classical, keyboard and music theory. I have been trained by some of the best instructors in the country and strive for my students to be vocally healthy, so they'll have long careers. I also perform in professional bands, orchestras and can bring that experience into the lesson.
Energetic and enthusiastic; actively promote values and traditional teaching practices coupled with the introduction of technology into the lesson. Experienced educator eager to share passion and talent for music with the next generation of musicians and outstanding communication skills.
...

Reviews

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Manty May 26, 2016
Singing · In studio
Verified Student
My kids loved her! She was fun and knowledgeable. Both of them wished they had more than 1/2 an hour!
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Mark F. February 18, 2016
Piano · In home
Verified Student
Excellent experience and Melody makes learning the piano very fun and enjoyable. Would highly recommend her,

Mark
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Juan Casas October 31, 2015
Singing · In studio
Verified Student
Amazing! I feel confident she will take me to where I want to be. Or at least 1,000 better than where I am
Now. I felt very comfortable right away.
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Melody M.

Melody M.

Minneapolis, MN 55426
(28)
starting at
$30 / 30-min
Profile_83761_pi_Blake%20Bedlam

Blake H.

Saint Paul, MN

All of my lessons maintain a great balance of work and play. We'll study music theory and technique, but always in an applicable and engaging way. We may also explore the wonders of composition if the student so desires. Interests vary from student to student, and therefore the curriculum will also.

I have a deep knowledge of Jazz theory. In addition, I specialize in Funk and Soul music.

About Blake

Blake is a young up-and-coming performer and instructor. He was fortunate enough to attend McNally Smith College of Music, where he was awarded the Honors Scholarship for Excellence in Percussion, an award that's offered to incoming Percussion Performance Majors. During his time at McNally Smith, he studied with many great instructors from the twin cities: Gordy Knudtson, David Schmalenberger, David Stanoch, JT Bates, Kevin Washington, Marv Dahlgren, and Paul Stueber. He has also studied with nationally acclaimed drummers: Mike Clark (Herbie Hancock's Headhunters), Robert 'Sput' Searight (Snar
ky Puppy), JP Bouvet and Chris Wabich. Being under the instruction of so many different drummers, Blake quickly became a very versatile musician. In addition to teaching privately, Blake teaches at School of Rock, Soundcheck Music School and Schuster's Music.
...

Reviews

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Ed J. November 22, 2016
Drum · In home
About six months ago, I decided to take lessons again after not playing seriously for about twenty years. It has been a wonderful experience. I look forward to meeting with Blake every week because:

I know I'm making a lot of progress
He makes it both fun and educational
He takes special effort to tailor the lessons to what I want to concentrate on but also encourages me to try new material or practice old material in a new way.
You can tell he loves to share his love of music and is a natural teacher.

Basically I couldn't be happier with my experience and would recommend Blake to anyone taking lessons.
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Tom B. November 3, 2016
Drum · In home
Verified Student
Blake is a talented instructor, he excels in tailoring the instruction plan to the students goals, and definitely keeps it fun. As an adult trying to learn drums with zero musical instrument background, after just 5 sessions with Blake I feel I have made notable progress. I really recommend him!
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Jessie October 19, 2016
Piano · In home
Verified Student
I believe I can learn a lot from Blake, looking forward the next class!
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Blake H.

Blake H.

Saint Paul, MN 55124
(14)
starting at
$20 / 30-min
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Laura P.

Minneapolis, MN

Born in the Midwest, I spent seven graduate years in Paris performing, teaching, and researching. I have come to see music lessons as both an intensely personal process and as an interpersonal process.

To beginners: anyone at any age can learn basic piano skills if they devote ten minutes a day to it.
To intermediate players: my goal is to train you to be your own primary teacher.
To advanced students: I can give you artistic colors for the palette and tools for the journey.

About Laura

Laura Potratz has been teaching private lessons and classes since 2009 and is currently teaching in the Dinkytown neighborhood of Minneapolis. Laura has helped students begin new musical journeys, whether at age five or age fifty-five, and encourages seekers of all ages to approach the power of music in their lives as a personal and interpersonal process.

Laura received her musical training at Valparaiso University (Indiana), the Conservatoire de Saint-Maur-des-Fossés (France) and the Sorbonne. As an expert in her field, Laura looks forward to helping new students achieve their goals. Laura
's teaching style centers on relaxation, consistency, and developing student independence.
...

Reviews

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Mery January 2, 2017
Piano
Laura was the 1st piano teacher of our daughter Julie - 6 years old at the time at
the Conservatoire de musique d'Ézanville - France. Laura clearly set the basis for Julie to progress steadily, she is good with children, flexible and firm on what need to be done (like practicing regularly at home)
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Ruth November 28, 2016
Singing · In studio
Laura is my daughter's voice teacher and has helped her grow as a student and as a vocalist. Laura tailors her lessons to what my daughter's interests are and pushes her into new territory. She is kind, professional, creative and is an incredible teacher. She focuses on technical and artistic aspects of voice working on music theory, technique and performance. My daughter always looks forward to seeing Laura- she is a gift to our family!
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Jennifer November 28, 2016
I worked with Laura a few years ago. She was my American tutor. We did not play music together, but she help me to improve my English. She is a really nice teacher, always in a good mood, always helping her students in the best possible ways. I really enjoyed working with her. If ever you have the opportunity to work with Laura, just do it, you will not regret it!
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Laura P.

Laura P.

Minneapolis, MN 55414
(3)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

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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.

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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.

5 Easy Pop Songs to Play On Piano

Looking for some fun and easy pop songs to play on the piano? Take a look at these suggestions from Greeley, CO teacher Andy W...   Playing your favorite songs on the piano doesn't have to be difficult. Start out with songs you enjoy and build from there. To get you started, here are five easy pop songs to play on piano today! "All About That Bass" - Meghan Trainor This is a fun, chart-topping song. The chords to this are A - Bmin - E - A. Each of these chords is played for two … Read More
5 Easy Pop Songs to Play On Piano
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How to Measure the Success of Your Child’s Piano Lessons
Piano lessons for kids are an investment -- so how do you know your investment is worthwhile? Here are some tips for checking in and making sure your child is learning piano at the right pace, courtesy of Brooklyn, NY teacher Liz T...   If your child has recently started taking private lessons, there are certain benchmarks you can follow to assess musical progress as he or she is learning piano. Many parents are unaware of how to track and measure their child's musical abilities.
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How Has Technology Changed Music Lessons? [Infographic]
Over the past several years, online music lessons have substantially grown in popularity. And it's no wonder -- it's an option that is convenient and often priced lower than in-person lessons. Plus, you can choose an instructor from practically anywhere! Advances in technology have made the success of online music lessons possible, but that’s not the only way that technology has changed the way we learn music. New innovations provide fun and creative ways to enhance the learning experience fo
How to Set Up a Piano Practice Schedule for Your Child
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