Charles Smith

Charles S.

Chicago, IL
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Lesson Details



Charles passed a background check that includes a SSN verification, national criminal record check, and sex offender registry search. Learn More
Charles delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 21+

Teaching since:

I was born as a gifted pianist and composer and destined to love music for a long time.

When I first started piano, I had gone through at least 6 piano teachers, including the toughest one, Emilio del Rosario. After starting to study piano at college-level, I earned a BM in Piano at Roosevelt University, and got MM and DMA degrees in Piano at the University of Illinois. I grew up with a very strong classical music background, and gradually, I was able to acclimate to non-classical styles later, including jazz, folk, pop, and rock.

Inspired by J.S. Bach and Robert Schumann, I also at least composed piano pedagogy pieces of my own for the intermediate levels, including "Sad Waltz in D Minor", and "Hungarian Rhapsody in E Minor", in addition to composing a lot more traditional piano compositions.

I also can teach music appreciation, piano literature, music theory/composition, and even some music history as well as applied piano. My focus would be on advanced students but I am still open to all levels of piano ability.

I also have a dance background, so this will help me greatly in my music teaching style as well.

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Feb 2007 - Present
Hartzell Memorial United Methodist Church

Performing for accompaniment with the Sanctuary Choir for Sunday church services.

Online Music Instructor and Tutor
Jan 2012 - Dec 2016

Produced and made 41 music teaching tutorials covering music theory, musicianship, and some aspects of keyboard skills.


Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Performance and Literature
Aug 1995 - Oct 2002
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Master of Music in Piano Performance
Aug 1994 - May 1995
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Bachelor of Music in Piano Performanve
Aug 1990 - May 1994
Roosevelt University


Fluent / Native Proficiency
Limited Proficiency
Limited Proficiency
Limited Proficiency
Limited Proficiency
Limited Proficiency


Honorable Mention for Musicianship - IBLA Grand Prize Music Competition
Jul 2001
IBLA Grand Prize (c/o Salvatore Moltisanti)
Honorable Mention in the French Piano Institute Piano Composition
Jul 2000
French Piano Institute

Photos & Videos

This is still another of my original intermediate-level piano pieces I had made.
This piano teaching tutorial focuses on the basics of the 3 different piano pedals
This is just one of several original piano pieces I had composed for the intermediate-level student.

3 Reviews

Write a Review
Ruth Sep 5, 2017

Charles Joseph Smith brings liveliness and expertise to his endeavors. His students have a wonderful, unique learning opportunity ahead of them.

Joe Sep 4, 2017
Piano · In studio

Charles has great knowledge of music and understands how to share it with students.

Fionnuala Sep 4, 2017
Piano · In studio

Charles is a maestro on the piano, a truly phenomenal talent. Just hearing him play is motivating inspiration to a student-- to listen to him perform, one realizes what the potential exists in the human talent. He is a sensitive and caring person who has a sincere passion for music and passing the skill on to others. He is well-versed in theory and technique, but is also delighted to share his love for more experimental and avant-garde modes --pushing boundaries and exploring new territories, should the student's interest venture that way. He lets the student direct what genre and composers s/he wants to learn about. Charles is a joy and an uplifting spirit to be around! His knowledge of piano and music is a tremendous resource. He is a cherished star of the Chicago underground music scene, as well as a skilled accompanist, and a seasoned professional church hymn player-- but he is modest enough to not let his reputation distract him during his lessons, where he is a serious teacher, eager to share his knowledge with others.

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