Ellen Sirower

Ellen S.

Ann Arbor, MI
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Lesson Details

Piano

Levels Taught:
Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced

I am an undergraduate student at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor studying piano performance and philosophy, with a strong interest in piano pedagogy of all levels. In pursuing these two degrees, I believe in a well-rounded musical education that includes story-telling, connecting music to relevant history and literature, and developing an emotive connection to music beyond just the technical in ways that are fun and engaging, especially in the beginning stages of learning.

That being said, I also emphasize the importance of having a solid foundation that allows for the capability to progress further. With teaching technique to beginners, I focus on fun exercises and activities that are easy for both the students and parents to understand and practice at home. Additionally, I believe that music theory is an essential building block to understanding how to read music effectively, so I begin every lesson with a short music theory lesson on basic harmony exercises that teach intervals, key signatures, reading clefs, and different types of scales.

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Ellen teaches

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About

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

Teaching since:
2019

I am an undergraduate senior at the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor studying piano performance and philosophy, with strong passions for critical thinking, piano pedagogy, chamber music, and contemporary music. I recently won top prizes in the Sewanee Summer Music Festival Concerto Competition, the Camerata Artists International Virtuoso II Competition, and the American Protégé International Piano and Strings Competition, where I was able to make my Carnegie Hall debut at Weill Recital Hall in 2018. I attended the Manhattan School of Music Pre-College Division in New York City for 10 years, and have been playing chamber music ever since I began there at the age of 7. I also attended the Brearley School for seven years, where I had rigorous academic training in the sciences, humanities, and leadership.

As a musician leading a double life with substantial academic training and work, I truly value learning music alongside a well-rounded education, as I believe that music is the quintessential liberal art. Just on its own, learning to play an instrument requires discipline, focused attention, and hard work. With the combination of a strong education, students can understand not only how to execute what is on the page in front of them, but understand music in context and have the ability to understand what music can communicate to others and themselves. For this reason, I incorporate academic components like music theory, composer biographies, contextual history, philosophy, and literature in ways that are accessible and fun to learn at all ages. I hope to build up students who not only improve their playing, but acquire skill sets that make them smarter and carry over into all aspects of their lives.

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Education

Piano Performance and Philosophy
Sep 2016 - Present
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor

Photos & Videos

A snippet of my own playing - check out my YouTube channel for more, if interested!

1 Review

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Bridget Jun 13, 2019
Piano · In home

Ellen is great at teaching both my daughter and myself. Very friendly, personable and understands the piano and classical repertoire at a high level. She’s really helped me with my fundamentals and music theory. My daughter (who is much better than I) mainly studies classical music with her and I love to hear her progress. Ellen is warm and accommodating and I’d recommend her to anyone!

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