Peter DeWitt

Peter D.

Oakland, CA
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100% Satisfaction Guarantee

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Lesson Details

Music Recording

Levels Taught:
Beginner, Intermediate
From establishing signal flow to setting up your home recording studio, to knowing which microphones to use, to using the right plug-ins, I can guide you through the massive amount of details, and help you find the particular rig you need and then help you learn to use it. I am a music producer, and own a professional recording studio from which we can operate.
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Peter teaches

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About

Peter delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 6+ and special needs

Teaching since:
February 2005

Whether piano, voice, songwriting/composition, music theory or music production, I bring all that I have learned and developed as a musician to the lesson in the interest of the student’s growth.

Whether we work in classical, jazz, or pop, We focus on what will directly fit your individual goals. We can cover the full spectrum of technique, theory, ear training, sight-reading, and performance. What emerges over time is tailor-made program suited to your needs and goals.

A little bit about my background: I have studied with over 12 music professors, both in the classroom and individually for 6 years at Saddleback Community College in Orange County. I’ve studied a number of styles while composing for and performing in various small ensembles, including:  world music, classical, pop, jazz, and musical theatre. I continue teach, produce and compose music for myself and other artists as well.

I look forward to getting to know you!

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Experience

Guitar Teacher
Jan 2016 - Present
Hands for Hope L.A.

I teach guitar to under-privileged students at a non-profit after-school program in North Hollywood.

2004
Jan 2004 - Present
D. Services

Self-Employed

Music Instructor
Oct 2009 - Jan 2014
California Music Studios

Taught piano, voice, and guitar for over 4 years

Education

Piano Performance
Jan 2007 - Jan 2011
Saddleback College

Languages

Spanish
Fluent / Native Proficiency

Awards

2015 Piano Teacher of the Year
Jun 2015
South Orange County
Music Teacher of the Year
Dec 2011
California Music Studios

Photos & Videos

debuting performance of my piano composition:  Prelude in C Major
hot off the press: a Binx tune I co-wrote/produced

so excited to see Binx, with whom I've been working closely, as she blossoms! :)
congrats to Tara Naghibi, a student of mine who just launched her YouTube channel featuring her original songs!
Pawleys Island family vacation, August 2015

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playing a theremin!

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performing in 2009

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just like Mike

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student Paige Palmer and I doing some recording

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at home chillin'
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19 Reviews

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Sam Oct 21, 2015
Singing · Online

I have always known I have had some kind of voice. I started doing lessons with Peter for not only vocals but also guitar. He has helped me explore the different ranges my voice can actually hit and how to add more emotion into a song. In one lesson just today, he made a song that i perfomed which sounded okay in the beginning of the lesson sound 10x better and to the very best of my ability by the end of the lesson. Every lesson is alot of help! He is great at understanding how to work with people whether it is vocally or trying to learn to play guitar - he uses great techniques for understanding and will work at the perfect pace appropriate for the student. He makes learning guitar and singing very fun. Highly reccomended!

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Charles Oct 19, 2015
Piano · Online

I am Peter's father, so obviously this review will be a little biased. And, I have never taken a lesson from Peter, as I am not a musician and do not play an instrument. BUT, I can say this: Peter is hard-working, conscientious, and devoted to his profession. He is passionate about music and about teaching, and genuinely cares about each student. AND, he knows how to make learning fun! (Evidently he inherited that trait from his mom, who teaches English and Spanish). So, hire Peter! He's the best!

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Louise Comfort Sep 29, 2015
Piano · In home

I found Peter to be very intelligent and very knowledgeable. Peter was great in not only classical styles of playing but also jazz which really kept me engaged! I especially liked the way he taught music theory alongside some of the standard learning points like scales and such. Overall I had a delightful experience with this teacher. If Peter ever moves back to my area I would love to take lessons with him again!

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Nadia N. Sep 7, 2015
Piano · In home

Words can't ever explain how amazing and talented Peter is with the piano, kids and teenagers like me. Not only does he encourages us to practice what we are most passionate about, but he inspires us to write our own music. When I was about 8 years old, I had a piano teacher who was very by the book. She never gave me the opportunity to go out of my box and try new styles and approaches to piano music. After a while, I lost all passion and motivation to play piano again. A couple of years have passed and my friend Tara introduced me to Peter. As I got to know him, I began to fall back in love with playing piano. He inspired me on a completely new level to continue practicing piano and to go down a certain path that fits me. He taught me how to write my own piano sheet by listening to the song and figuring out what notes match with the melody or the background music. He introduced me to Yanni, which I soon fell in love with and continued playing his music. Not only has he been such an amazing, influential piano teacher, but he has also been my best friend who I could talk to about anything at anytime. I love him to death and I guarantee you will never be disappointed in him.

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Brigitte C. Sep 6, 2015
Piano ·

Peter taught my 5 1/2 year old son the piano for 8 months (only 8 months because Peter relocated, otherwise we would still be with him). Peter is great with children! He assesses their individual needs and styles then adapts the lessons to the child. He has instilled the joy of playing the piano in our son which is priceless. Although, our son is a beginner, I have heard his advanced students play and they are amazing. I would definitely recommend Peter to any parent.

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Arash Sep 3, 2015
Arrangement and Composition · In studio

Peter's initial role was as my vocal instructor. This evolved into music theory, songwriting, then production. Working with Peter has helped me grow in leaps and bounds in my songwriting, vocal technique, performance, and overall musical skill. He gave me tools to better understand and, even more importantly, appreciate myself as a musician. Peter has cares greatly for his students and invests himself strongly in their success (to the degree that they want it, of course). I owe him much and I regard him highly as both a teacher and a friend.

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Dami M. Dec 22, 2014
Guitar · In studio

My child was resistant to learning the guitar - thought it was too hard - but was able to make strides and now enjoys it due to Peter's patience! He made the lessons fun, too.

Melissa R. Dec 10, 2014
Arrangement and Composition · In home

I had the privilege to work with Peter in Artist Development. He was instrumental in helping be unlock my creative blocks. His passion for music and musicians is evident in his breath. He really cares about the art of expression and will always go the extra mile to help artists grow their authentic self and passion. I highly recommend Peter to anyone. His excellent songwriting and composition skills, along with his Music Industry expertise and connections are an added bonus that could expand to endless future collaborations and possibilities.

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brittany G. Dec 8, 2014
Songwriting · In home

I have worked with and learned from Peter D. for a little over 2 years and am SO happy with how much I have learned. Peter is classically trained but is also open to many music styles and experimentation. Not only is he an exceptional musician himself, he really knows how to "diagnose" each student and create the lesson around their needs. You will not be bored in Peter's class!

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Anna L. Dec 8, 2014
Piano · In studio

My 8 year old loves his music lessons! Peter was great at finding the right balance between theory and play to keep my son's love for music alive and offered to mix piano and drum lessons, second being my son's favourite instrument. Peter is very knowledgeable and he knows how to work with children which was very important for me.

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tara N. Dec 7, 2014
Songwriting · In home

I have gone through three to four teachers in my musical journey and none of them have ever compared to Peter. He never fails to astound me with his composing, playing, and production abilities.
I have been his student for about three and a half years now and I don't plan on changing that anytime soon. I look forward to my lessons because he makes every second exciting and valuable. Whether he is teaching piano, technique, songwriting, theory or voice, his passion radiates through and is extremely contagious.
He has not only substantially improved my playing and technique, but also introduced me to songwriting, which has immensely changed my life and I owe all my success to him.
Peter is not only my piano teacher, but my role model, mentor and big brother. He has always been there to pick me up and regain my confidence after the performances that weren't my best. Being a teenager, it's easy to doubt my talents, but Peter has always been the one to remind me of my abilities and send me in the right direction.
He is the most dedicated and patient man I know. He is always willing to work around my schedule, even though he lives an hour or two away from me. He never becomes upset, or at least he never shows it, when I butcher his compositions or don't get a piece right the first time.
I am overjoyed and blessed to have found such an amazing piano teacher and mentor.

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Christina O. Dec 6, 2014
Piano · In home

Peter is a wonderful teacher! My son loves taking lessons with Peter. He's very nurturing and fun! He's takes a positive approach with my son. We've love him so much we've recommended him to close friends!

Rob P. Dec 6, 2014
Piano · In home

We've been working with Peter for more than a year, and our boys are not only building their confidence levels with respect to the piano, they're having a ton of fun doing it. I remember when I was 8 years old, and I was forced by my parents to go to piano lessons across town. I never wanted to go because the teacher was overly stiff and strict... Picture the old lady that knocks your wrist with a ruler, and that was pretty accurate!

I only wish I had a teacher like Peter when I was my kids' ages! My boys practice daily - many times on their own, because they're having fun, and feeling confident about how they're doing! The "Masters Class" concept that Peter has created for his students to practice playing in front of larger groups has helped both kids, and resulted in greater self-assurance when performing in front of people they don't know.

The last point that I'd like to share about Peter is that he shows great patience when working with kids, and they respond very well to his teaching style. He is truly a gifted teacher that we're thrilled to be working with!

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Daisy H. Dec 6, 2014
Singing · In home

Peter is simply amazing. Not only is he a genius composer/piano player/lyricist/singer/songwriter, but his ability to teach is simply out of this world. He is kind and sensitive, very willing to go slow and make sure the concepts are really understood. He is also fun and makes learning feel easy. I always look forward to my lessons and I always leave wishing I had more time.

I was a scared singer but Peter has really helped me overcome that fear and feel comfortable with my own voice. He is encouraging and very supportive. I would recommend Peter to anyone, seriously ANYONE. He is great with children of all ages, adults, and even seniors.

I would take the opportunity to work with Peter NOW before he becomes too famous, because I am absolutely sure he will in the very immediate future.

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Daniel S. Dec 5, 2014
Music Performance · In home

Peter was a wonderful surprise. In addition to being a beautiful pianist himself, he showed me how to really enjoy the music I was learning. He was very patient and I could tell that he knew how to approach me as a student. Thanks Peter!

Cary F. Jun 28, 2014
Piano · In home

Peter has been very thorough in his teachings with our children. He has given them well rounded/comprehensive lessons that has included music theory, rhythm and just a general understanding of the musicality needed to perform a song.

Being that I am a musician myself, that studied at the University of North Texas, I can be very critical of most musicians but especially teachers that work with my kids. I would highly recommend Peter to anyone that is looking for a teacher that teaches more than just notes on a page.

Cary Floyd

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Jon C. Jul 18, 2013
Piano ·

Contagious Energy, Passion, Fun, and Creativity.

Peter has taught our oldest son for about 2 years and our younger for half a year. Both have enjoyed being able to quickly play recognizable tunes, and the oldest has progressed to playing more difficult and even beautiful pieces.

I appreciate Peter's flexibility to let the students find their style and begin developing their own preferences by letting them choose among numerous potential recital pieces. It builds their confidence and makes them feel like partners in the experience--the very opposite of the stereotypical stern piano teacher.

He also has a great sense of humor. So in any session with my kids I overhear him striking a nice balance between focus and firmness where needed, yet it's frequently punctuated with encouraging high fives and good-natured laughter. He sometimes bets them on whether they can meet a stretch goal and he seems perfectly happy to fork over the 50 cents (or whatever) when they can reach it.

I especially appreciate his preserving some time for composition to allow the kids to cultivate any creative impulses and more deeply understand the structure of music. My youngest broke into a frenzy of writing several tunes after hearing about Peter working on a composition with his older brother. I can't imagine this would have even occurred to him if Peter didn't create this encouraging environment to not just play music, but dare to write it. He sets a great example here by including his own creative works in the recitals, exemplifying both creativity and his strong playing.

Another benefit is the structure he brings with the master classes, and the informal recitals, building up to the more formal ones. The master class he patterned after a collegiate setting, an innovative adaptation to younger students that makes our guys feel like they're part of the greater music scene, where they can critique each other as peers with other kids under Peter's guidance. This gives them something to aim for with enough pacing yet informality that it doesn't overwhelm them, but keeps them progressing. This variety also creates different settings for our boys to learn and perform beyond the formal lessons at home. The master class has not only created a very stimulating learning environment, but has exposed them to a warm community of fellow students whom they sometimes meet separately, such as to prepare duets.

Recently he recognized our oldest son with a certificate for most improved, an example of the more formal type of acknowledgement that helps keep the kids motivated to keep trying. But what motivates them the most is Peter's enthusiastic and contagious energy and love of music. It's clearly his life's work and his creativity inspires.

Beware parents: If you have an interest or an inkling to play yourself, Peter's enthusiasm and encouragement may very well win you over to start--or get back into it. And you'll be glad you did. He's allowed me to resume piano by accompanying my son on duets. And he's indulged my many questions on how to play and lead my sons more effectively. As a result, I've experienced the greatest joy making music with my sons!

Thank you, Peter!

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Elizabeth L. Jul 5, 2013
Piano ·

Great Teacher; Truly Inspiring

Peter has been teaching piano to my daughter for the past 8 months and Voice/Guitar to my son for over a year. He has a wonderful ability to engage my children while teaching them the fundamentals of music. We have had other music teachers but it wasn't until we hired Peter that my kids actually started looking forward to their lessons and practicing at home. I so appreciate all the effort he puts into his work, the weekly lessons and periodic recitals and master classes. He does a great job because he cares about music, his students, and sharing his passion.

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Lilia S. Jul 1, 2013
Piano ·

So lucky to have found him

Me and my 2 daughters have been taking piano lessons with Peter for 2 years now and we are so happy to have him as a teacher.

My girls started from knowing nothing and now they are performing classical pieces in recitals, workshops and master classes...they really like their lessons with Peter as he takes a very laid back approach while making sure they are progressing.
I think this to be a very important thing to engage children, since some piano teachers can come across as too serious and make learning music a tedious thing for kids.

As for me, after studying piano for 6 years a while back, I have been learning more advanced pieces now, including some of his original compositions (the most difficult stuff so far!)
On top of that, Peter started me studying music theory, and that has helped me tremendously in understanding what I'm playing.

I was also very impressed with the level of performance of his other students at this past recital, some of them composing and performing their own pieces at a very young age.

So if you are looking to learn music (piano, voice, composition) I could not recommend Peter enough!

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