Bernadette Tornabene

Bernadette T.

Lindenhurst, NY

About Bernadette T.

Background check: Last verified 04/10/2017
Bernadette passed a background check on 04/10/2017 that included the following:
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Bernadette teaches: Ages 7 and up
Teaching since: September 1992
Last sign in: Today


I am a NYS certified Music teacher who has been teaching in the school system for over 20 years.

I hold both my BM and MA degree in Music Education, and Jazz guitar was my major instrument in college. Because of my educational background in teaching, my primary goal and focus ito teach techniques, skills and concepts for life-long learning.

I am currently available to teach Guitar, Music Theory and Beginner Piano.

Aside from teaching private guitar and piano lessons and teaching General music and Chorus in school, I perform and accompany singers as a guitarist in churches on Long Island.

For your added security, I've been VIRTUS trained with the Catholic Diocese of Rockville Centre and fingerprinted with the NYS Education department.

Incorporated in my system of guitar training work in music reading, music theory, fretboard navigation, pick-control and fingerstyle techniques, and ear-training applicable to most contemporary styles of music. NYSSMA preparation is available for both Classical and Jazz auditions.

Piano lessons are available with concentration in proper hand mechanics and technique, theory, ear-training and music reading. NYSSMA preparation up through level 4 is available.

*** Lesson Details ***
My guitar lessons follow a structured format. I begin with technical exercises for both the picking/strumming hand and the fretting hand, leading to good sound production. As students learn to achieve well-balanced tones, they learn to apply that to the written page using standard music notation and the TAB system. From single notes, students learn to build harmony, (chords), from 2 notes, to 3, and thereafter, 4. Song repertoire is built from a variety of sources including published method books. Memorization of song repertoire is stressed.

Within the first 2 months, beginning students will have learned the melodies and basic harmonies/chords to simple songs including "Jingle Bells", "Ode to Joy" and "Love me Tender".

After the student has learned the notes and scales in the first position as well as the associated chords, he/she can learn songs of his/her choosing from the Folk, Pop, Classical and Jazz repertoire that is appropriate to his/her current level.

Piano method books used include the Dozen-A-Day and Hanon technique exercises as well as the Schaum and Michael Aaron method book series'.

NYSSMA training/coaching is available for both piano and guitar with suitable training beginning a least a year before the NYSSMA audition is to take place.

The Guitar student should have a good quality guitar, (steel strings, nylon strings, or steel-string electric) professionally set-up with light-gauged strings (for the beginners), a strap, a music stand, and time and space in the home in order to encourage a daily routine of practice.

The Piano student should have daily access to a piano or keyboard instrument with weighted keys in order to be able to practice lesson material daily.

For young students, a practice chart is given where a student is to mark his/her practice time in order for progress to be made.

*** Studio Equipment ***
I have a dedicated room in my home that is set up for private practice and teaching. It has an electronic piano, folding chairs, a music stand and guitar amplifiers and cables.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I bring an acoustic guitar with me to all out-going lessons so that I can play along with the student and demonstrate techniques as necessary. I bring extra blank sheets of music writing paper, fret board diagrams, and study sheets, as well as extra copies of the books I use most frequently. I can purchase books/materials for the student, with the student's or parent/guardian's reimbursement, or the student may purchase materials on their own.

*** Specialties ***
Pick-style and finger-style guitar, both acoustic and electric; music reading, music theory; re-harmonization and arrangement techniques to make a song your own!

Photos and Videos


Liturgical Guitarist
Jan 2012 - Present
RC Diocese of Rockville Ctre.

I accompany and co-accompany children cantors as well as the children's choir at the 10:00Am Mass weekly.

Chorus and General Music a Teacher
Sep 1994 - Present
The Catholic Diocese of Rockville Centre

I teach music to children in grades Pk-8, as well as the chorus program. I use a variety if techniques to build musicianship including that which come from the Kodaly, Orff, and Gordon methodologies.


Jul 1997 - May 2000
BME-Music Education
Sep 1988 - May 1993
Five Towns College

Languages Spoken

Fluent / Native Proficiency


Music K-12
Feb 2000
NY State

Permanent state certification in Music Education.


Member of Phi Sigma Eta Honor Society
May 1997
Award of Excellence in Psychology
May 1993
Five Towns College
Five Towns College Honor Society
May 1993
Five Towns College
Award of Excellence in Lab Band
May 1990
Five Towns College

8 Reviews on Bernadette T.

Write a Review
Gianna Z. Apr 9, 2016
· Guitar · In studio Just wonderful with my children very pleased
Michaela Z. Apr 9, 2016
· Piano · In studio She's very patient I couldn't be happier
BRIAN J Mar 31, 2016
· Guitar · In studio Bernadette is an excellent communicator .She provides an easy understanding of the lesson while making one feel very comfortable with her terrific energy. I highly recommend her.
Gina P. Mar 28, 2016
· Guitar · In home Bernadette is a patient, through instructor. This was my first lesson and i am looking forward to learning much more from her.
Felix R. Mar 28, 2016
· Guitar · In studio Good lesson!
Daniel C. Aug 25, 2014
· Acoustic Guitar · In studio When the year started and I wanted to get serious playing guitar and becoming a better performer, singer, songwriter and just overall musician, I said to myself, "Where do I start?" To find someone of Bernadette's talent, quality, and patience has truly be amazing. She is great at setting up a practice structure and teaching theory as well as building up your skills and open to directing the lessons to exactly what you are looking for. My confidence on the guitar has grown by leaps and bounds and I looking forward to continuing the journey...5 stars!!!!!
Don U. Mar 12, 2014
· Guitar · Learning technique and theory

Bernadette is well versed in music theory. She is helping me learn the theory as well as developing my technique on various levels.
Gerry W. Dec 4, 2013
· Guitar · Professional and Experienced Teacher

I've had 4 lessons so far with Bernadette. I am an adult and feel I am making great progress. The lessons are a good mix of learning to play the guitar, learning to read music and theory. She recommended a good beginner book and while we stick to it she tailors the material according to how I am doing and need to learn. She also makes notes and gives me additional work in a music notebook. The lessons are never rushed and because there isn't a student after me usually are 5-10 minutes over the 45 minutes.
I feel fortunate to have found someone with a Masters in music education and 20 years of teaching experience.
Bernadette Tornabene
Bernadette T.

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