Crystal brings a lifetime’s experience of professional musicianship to each of her lessons. Born into a family of musicians, she sang her first solo at age 2. She also benefits her students with an extraordinarily diverse musical background, having worked as a vocalist in gospel, country, musical theater, jazz, classical, rock, pop and soul styles. Her performing career has taken her from L.A. church meetings to London’s Houses of Parliament.
Crystal hails originally from Los Angeles, CA - where her musical parents gave her a head start by including her in the family business the moment she was able to contribute. She went on to study classical voice, piano and music theory at The Boston Conservatory of Music. After concluding her studies in London, she returned home and began working regularly as a theater performer, appearing in twenty world premiers and re-imagined classics. Most notably she played the lead role of Keely Smith in the big band jazz musical “Louis and Keely: Live At The Sahara” during its eight-month run at Westwood’s Geffen Playhouse. She also formed her own rock band, The Honeysuckle Jones Revival, with whom she performed her own songs all over Los Angeles. And she began working as a studio session vocalist, providing demo vocals for other songwriters, as well as arranging and performing back-up vocals for original artists, including Laura Roppe (currently in the Top Ten on Billboard’s Uncharted list of emerging artists.) Crystal played the lead role of Brooke in the new operatic rock musical “The Burning Opera LA” during its Los Angeles run in 2011 as well as providing ensemble vocals and playing piano and bass. She also performs holiday tunes from the Golden Age of American songwriting with musical quartet The Sleigh Belles.
Crystal believes that music is serious business but that it should be fun. She encourages her students to play music they love, as well as expanding their musical knowledge. She is a firm believer in basics first and emphasizes theory and technique as the tools to support creativity and provide freedom, power and control. She believes effort beats talent every time and the student who practices consistently will see results, whatever their level of ability. Most of all, she believes we were all born to make music.
*** Lesson Details ***
Lesson structure varies depending on the student's instrument, age, level of experience and musical style. However, all lessons focus on:
After 3 or 6 months of consistent lesson attendance and practice, students will have a clear understanding of how their instrument works and how to care for it. They will be able to read basic music notation. They will be working toward clearly defined musical goals and they will have at least three performance pieces learned.
*** Studio Equipment ***
Loft Space: full size electric piano with weighted keys, small digital recorder, microphone, Garage Band, parents can sit in on lessons
*** Travel Equipment ***
I bring a small keyboard for vocal students with no piano, karaoke tracks and a digital recorder. I also bring a selection of games. Students are expected to purchase all necessary books and sheet music.
*** Specialties ***
Young beginners (piano)
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The MTNA was founded in 1876 with the goal of advancing the value of music study and music-making to society while supporting the careers and professionalism of teachers of music. With nearly 22,000 members in 50 states—and more than 500 local affiliates—the MTNA is the preeminent source for music teacher support, where members embody like-minded values and commitment to their students, colleagues and society as a whole, while reaping the rewards of collaboration, continuity and connection throughout the lifetime of their careers.