Doniell Cushman

Doniell C.

Spokane, WA
100% Satisfaction Guarantee

100% Satisfaction Guarantee

We know that starting lessons is a big step and we want you to feel confident booking with us. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll help you find a new teacher or you can receive a refund for any unused lessons within the first year from the date of purchase.

Lesson Details


Levels Taught:
Beginner, Intermediate
Piano lessons are a joy to teach! Let me inspire you. Within the first few lessons, you'll know terminology and piano basics such as rhythm and body placement, and as time goes on you'll be able to play classics, standards and more. I typically use method books combined with traditional repertoire.

***My Equipment***

Extended upright Knabe
Yamaha Digital Piano YPG-625
Printer/Scanner/Copier and high speed internet connectivity Digital and traditional ticking metronomes
Flashcards and numerous other learning materials and aids
Extensive Music library

***At the lesson***

During the lesson, students will begin with a performance of the material they have completed throughout the week. Corrections may be made. Students may have to repeat assignments until they are played satisfactorily - this is common. Then, writing assignments will be graded. Online students will submit writing assignments online through e-mail prior to the lesson, and will be given their grades at the lesson. Next, new material and concepts will be covered. Following the introduction of the week's work, there may be quizzes, flashcards, games, ear training, and composition assignments. Online students are required to write and keep track of their own assignments. At the end of each lesson I reserve time for Q&A. Bring any and all questions to your lesson. If you think of them during practice, write them down and bring them up here.
All students under the age of 12 taking online lessons must have an adult nearby during the lesson for technical assistance. This includes setup of the view of lessons.

All students under the age of 8 must have a parent/guardian sit in on lessons - both for online and lessons in my home. This is so that they can listen and be able to assist their student. This may include help with reading assignments, help with understanding assignments, physically assisting students (lifting a wrist, carrying materials, etc.)

Online only students MUST have the following: Skype and Skyping platform (tablet, computer, etc.), a quiet room or environment in which lessons are conducted, a full-sized piano or weighted electric/digital piano, printer/scanner/copier, Pencils and Highlighters.


I require all students to practice each piece of music at least 3 times every day, if not more. 30-60 minutes for students aged 10 and older, each day. Students aged 5-10 should practice between 15-30 minutes each day. Practice time does not include written, reading, or listening assignments. These should be done prior to any practicing.


This will be determined by the student's needs and goals, but the following is a general list of what to expect to purchase.

-Method books (i.e. Bastien, Alfred's Basic Piano Library, Piano Adventures)
-Theory and/or Notespeller books
-Repertoire Books
-Technic Books
-Etude or Progressive Study books
-Sheet Music


All students will receive a copy of my policies prior to lessons, and must sign an agreement that they will follow said policies regarding situations such as cancelling lessons, etiquette, and more.
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Doniell teaches



Doniell passed a background check that includes a SSN verification, national criminal record check, and sex offender registry search. Learn More
Doniell delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 5+ and special needs

Teaching since:

My name is Doniell and I can't wait to meet you! I've been teaching private lessons since 2002 and have loved helping my students appreciate, understand, and be inspired by music. I went to Washington State University, and the University of Maryland, and earned a degree in Humanities in 2011. I am a member of MTNA, and teach lessons to students from my local area in my home and online to students around the world. I'm a helpful and compassionate person and my teaching style is informative, determined by the student's needs and goals, and a combination of traditional and contemporary. I have played piano over 30 years, and compose my own music during spare time. I look forward to helping you reach your goals!

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Piano Teacher
Jan 2011 - Present
Private Studio

Owner and operator of private studio for students in the Spokane metropolitan area. I teach piano and music theory.

I am also available for online lessons via Skype to any English speaking persons worldwide. Please sign up through the Take Lessons website.

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Piano Teacher
Jan 2007 - Jun 2010
Private Studio

Owner and operator of private studio for American dependents living abroad in Germany serving the U.S. Goverment or Armed Forces.

Piano Teacher
Jan 2002 - Jan 2007

Freelance tutoring and lesson teaching.

Praise Team Member
Jan 1995 - Aug 2002
Word of Life Church of God

Back-up pianist, synthesizer, and choir member.


B.A. Humanities
Aug 2008 - Nov 2011
University of Maryland, University College
Music Education
Aug 2002 - May 2005
Washington State University


Fluent / Native Proficiency
Limited Proficiency


Music Teachers National Association
Jun 2010

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.

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Kappa Kappa Psi
Mar 2003

Founded on the campus of Oklahoma State University on November 27, 1919, Kappa Kappa Psi is a guiding light with which band students can grow, learn, and develop themselves and their band programs. Kappa Kappa Psi is an organization of opportunity and quality, brimming with historic, well-developed leadership and membership programming that students use to become great leaders, better band members and better adapted young adults prepared for what lies ahead of them.

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Photos & Videos

A little about Doniell
This is where I give lessons. I have a 2013 Knabe extended upright. It has a gorgeous deep sound, and is very responsive.

This is my other love, my Yamaha digital piano on which I've spent many hours composing.

An early intermediate piece I often teach students: German Dance in E Major, Franz Josef Haydn (1732-1809)
Etude, Ferdinand Beyer (1803-1863). A late elementary piece I often have students learn.
Skating by Vince Guaraldi from Peanuts.
Me and my trusty steed!

Spring 2015 Recital

Can't wait to meet you!
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8 Reviews

Write a Review
Leia Mar 11, 2019
Piano · In studio

I am about retired and decided to take piano lesson as a hobby last year. I knew nothing about playing piano and music theory. I was lucky to find Doniell as my piano teacher. She is very patient with me for not knowing anything and explains everything I need to know for that day’s lesson. She is also very flexible to work with me with my work and trip schedules. I have been with her for one year and take half hour lesson each week except when I was out of town, now I am able to play many songs and very happy with my good progress. I definitely recommended her to anyone who is interested in learning piano lessons. You will get satisfactions.

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Aurora Nov 14, 2017
Piano · In home

It was Auroras first lesson,she absolutely loved it

Tylonda May 10, 2017
Piano · In studio

Our daughter is taking lessons with Doniell and after every lesson is thrilled to share her experiences. Doniell has been exceedingly accomodating of our schedule, making it absolutely pleasant to work with her. We are a homeschool family and she offered time outside of evening hours. We had several illnesses and issues with travel during the snow this past winter and she has always been understanding and patient with rescheduling. Our daughter is very enthusiastic about piano and many things in life, we are thankful we have Doniell to guide her as she continues to develop a passion for music.

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Ivory Aug 18, 2016
Piano · In studio

We have been so pleased with Doniell's teaching style. Her studio is clean and comfortable, and she has been very flexible with our schedules. I wholeheartedly recommend her to friends.

Julia L. Jul 31, 2015
Piano · In studio

Our daughters have been taking Piano lessons with Doniell for 3 years.
They respond well to her teaching style and she challenges them in all the right ways. She offers a great mix of theory with the piano lessons.
We have enjoyed the annual Piano Recitals that Doniell's students participate in.
As a parent I have always found Doniell to be extremely responsive to our schedule for which i am always appreciative
I am looking forward to seeing their progress in the coming year

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Amber O. Jul 29, 2015
Piano · In home

My 17 year old daughter has taken lessons from Donielle for over 2 years and has enjoyed every lesson. Donielle is well educated,polite and experienced with all ages of students. I would highly recommend her.

Katrina K. Jul 29, 2015
Piano · In studio

My daughter has some learning and attention problems and Doniell is very patient with her and my daughter looks forward to attending lessons. Doniell is flexible with our schedules and easy to communicate with.

Hillary O. Jul 29, 2015
Piano · In studio

My daughter has been taking lessons from Doniell and Cushman Music for close to two years. Her lessons are tailored to my daughter's age and abilities, and she manages to strike a perfect balance between pushing her to succeed without frustrating and overwhelming her.

At 8 years old, my daughter is already understanding theory concepts that I didn't understand until I was much older. I would highly recommend Doniell for students of all ages and abilities.

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