Oliver Edsforth

Oliver E.

Brooklyn, NY
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Lesson Details

Music Theory

Levels Taught:
I got my degree in NYU from music theory and since graduating I've continued my pursuit of this fascinating subject with individual study and lessons to a wide variety of students. I particularly enjoy making theory relevant to beginners but have no problem going over the most advanced topics, including the 20th century avant-garde, electronic music and beyond.
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Oliver teaches



Oliver delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 5 to 80 and special needs

Teaching since:
February 2006

Hi, I'm Oliver Edsforth, a professional musician currently residing in north Brooklyn.

In addition to composing and performing concert music and jazz in Brooklyn, I played in the rock bands Arpline and The Kiss Off and recorded for Universal Records with the super group Pure Love. I currently record and perform under the monikers Negation, Afterworldsmen, Sandglass and Marlowe Dies as well as performing live around New York with the post-punk band Cloak.

At the end of 2017 I graduated from Hunter College with a Masters in Music Education (preK-12), which included high level conducting at Stuyvesant High School as part of my student teaching. I graduated from NYU in 2005 with a degree in music theory and composition (after completing 2 years as a jazz performance major on saxophone). I played in the rock bands Arpline and The Kiss Off and recorded for Universal Records with the super group Pure Love. I currently record and perform under the monikers Negation, Afterworldsmen, Sandglass and Marlowe Dies as well as performing live around New York with the post-punk band Cloak.

I've been teaching both piano and music theory lessons since 2006 and have had great success with students. With my vast knowledge of esoteric and popular music genres (I'm comfortable with folk, death metal, modern jazz, indie rock, hip-hop... well, you get the point. I'm a music obsessive) I believe becoming a total musician should be a goal for any student but I enjoy the challenge that each individual brings to the table.

*** Lesson Details ***
In the past I've tailored lessons based on the specific needs of my students.
For example: someone who can read music based on childhood experience, but is struggling to regain confidence, could use technical exercises, piece-learning w/ structure and theory insights, as well as genre work outside their comfort zone. For a total beginner, reading music might be a long haul; so strategies for learning simple tunes and more general theory insights are a must.

Curriculum I commonly use for piano/theory includes, Hannon, easier Bach repertoire, Beethoven/Mozart/Chopin/etc,, The Jazz Piano book, Tonal Harmony, This is Your Brain on Music. Because of my extensive relationship with a wealth of texts, I never just rest on my laurels and will find the right material for you (even if that means printing or e-mailing pages from my own collection)

I'm fairly laid back compared to many teachers, but as a forward thinking, well-rounded musician (music is my life) I will revel in pushing students to max out their potential, no matter what their experience level.

*** Studio Equipment ***
High-end digital stage piano, midi keyboards, music software, guitars, sax, trumpet, snare drum, small studio set-up (microphone, interface, etc).

*** Specialties ***
Very adept at explaining music theory and the dissemination of practical information into piano lessons. The solo piano repertoire from the 18th through late 20th century is another specialty. The students I've had most success with range from absolute beginners to advanced professionals, but all seem to have a broad range of music interests and curiosity for improvement.

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Private Piano and Music Lessons
Sep 2005 - Present

Nov 2013 - Jan 2014

Scored video content for the philanthropical human rights organization.

Freelance Musician/Keyboard Player
Jan 2012 - Mar 2012
Universal Records


M.A. in Music Education: pre-K-12
Aug 2015 - Dec 2017
Hunter College
BA in Music Composition/Theory
Sep 2001 - May 2005
NYU Steinhardt


Professional Proficiency

Photos & Videos

A solo piano piece garnered from my upcoming funeral doom metal record on bandcamp under the recording name AEOLIAN
Sax, synth and more--no prob

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5 Reviews

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Brianna May 23, 2016
Piano · In studio

I have only had a few lessons so far, but I am enjoying them. Oliver is very willing to rehearse music of your interest and is very helpful with any concerns you may have. He pushes you out of your comfort zone just enough and I feel that I am definitely growing as a musician. Great experience so far.

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Rachel M. Jun 2, 2015
Synthesizer · In home

Oliver has a wealth of knowledge in music. He is also very nice and comfortable to be around with.

Daniel D. Oct 1, 2014
Piano · In home

I've been taking piano lessons with Oliver for about a year now, and in just one year, my love and ability to play piano has surpassed my expectations. Oliver creates his lesson plan based on the individual's needs, and adjusts his teaching to match the students capacity to learn, making for a fun, relaxed, and comprehensive lesson each time.

Oliver has helped me not only understand theory, which helps with composing music, but also how to read and play sheet music. Like anything, you only get better with practice, but having a great teacher to guide you along the way makes all the difference.

I would recommend Oliver to any individual seeking to enhance his/her ability to play, read and/or write music, whether you are a beginner or an advanced musician.

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Ronald Andrew S. Sep 5, 2014
Composition · In studio

I started piano lessons with Oliver many years ago. His deep knowledge of music spurred my intellectual curiosity in music, impulsing me to study composition with him. In three years, he has had the patients and knowledge to prepare me to the point of being top of my composition class at The Juilliard School's Evening Division. He is kind and adapts his classes to everyone's need.
If you are serious about playing the piano, then I would highly recommend him.

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Devery D. Aug 12, 2014
Piano · In studio

Oliver is great! I took lessons with him for several months and learned so much. he is kind, smart, patient, fun to chat with, and exacting and will push you to practice and reach beyond your comfort level. he is able to explain music theory clearly to people at all levels and would actively help me try to find pieces that I would be interested in playing, like the Twin Peaks theme or how to play Brian Eno's "On Some Faraway Beach" on piano. I'm so grateful I found him when I did and I give him my most enthusiastic recommendation.

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