Ryan Crosthwaite

Ryan C.

San Marcos, CA
Available Locations:
Studio Studio
Home Home

Hi everyone!

I'm a highly qualified and professional piano teacher with a degree in Piano Performance from SDSU and a roster of close to 30 students. I've been teaching for close to 6 years and am happy to be able to host annual recitals, masterclasses, chamber music events, and so on.

Despite my professional playing ability, I pride myself in being extremely personable, fun, and funny to be around! I'm a young teacher (at a modest 24 years old), which lets me really connect with my students. It would be an understatement to say that my many students love their lessons with me! Check out some of my reviews here: https://takelessons.com/profile/ryan-cr#Reviews

Here's what you can expect from me if you decide to work with me:
1) I'm always Professional, Punctual, and Polite.
2) University level piano lessons at a fraction of the cost.
3) Traditional and Modern teaching methodologies.


Here are a few of my many qualifications and accomplishments as a pianist:

1) Bachelors Degree in Piano Performance from SDSU
2) Vocal / Instrumental Accompanist at SDSU
3) Chamber Musician
4) International Competition Experience - Semper Music Festival 2016.
5) Taught Class Piano at SDSU (University level group-piano lessons for music majors)

I'd love to help you work towards musical excellence! I hope to hear from you soon!

I look forward to our first lesson!


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Reviews (18)

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Robert May 21, 2018
Piano · Online

Amy Mar 8, 2018
Piano · In home

Ryan is a wonderful piano teacher to our son (just turned 8). Our son wasn’t making much progress at the group sessions at our local music academy. Individual lessons have been very effective. Ryan is great with kids and finds a good balance between work and play. He gives the right amount of homework (doable without burnout). He has great energy and patience and keeps things fun with our son. We plan to start our younger son (just turned 6) with Ryan soon as well.

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Alexia K. Apr 24, 2016
Piano · In home

Great piano teacher.

Pamela D. Aug 20, 2015
Piano · In studio

Ryan is a really great instructor. We have had a solid relationship working with him, and he has proven to be an incredibly competent teacher. He is very focused, and works well with kids. I highly recommend him.

Spencer Jul 8, 2015
Piano · In studio

Fantastic teacher that has a great eye for detail and is truly passionate about the instrument and teaching whoever is willing to learn! I can honestly say I've learned more in the past month or so that I've been taking lessons than I would have in 6 months of trying to teach myself. Very affordable pricing and absolutely worth every penny!

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Belen Jul 6, 2015
Piano · In studio

Ryan is a very enthusiastic teacher to my 11 year old. He is very patient and makes lessons entertaining and stress free. My child looks forward to lessons every week. I highly recommend Ryan to all parents looking for a good piano teacher for their kids!

Pamela D. May 6, 2015
Piano · In home

Ryan is enthusiastic and energetic, which rubs off on my son. He has good communication skills and rapport with both my son and myself, and patience needed for teaching younger students. We both have been very happy with Ryan's lessons and I highly recommend him.

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heather G. Jan 13, 2015
Piano · In home


Ryan has put the passion for piano back in my kids! About a year ago, my kids completely burned out on piano and had no desire to start back up. But then we found Ryan, and now they absolutely love playing and practicing.

I have a 12 year old daughter and a 9 year old son. They both adore Ryan and say that he makes learning piano fun. My son loves that Ryan finds fun apps for him so he can practice his piano notes on the iPad.

Ryan comes to our home for lessons. He is always incredibly timely (even arrives a few minutes early) and is always organized. If the kids have a question on a piece between lessons, he will FaceTime to help them through the work. He is great about using modern day technology to work with the kids in a way that they know and appreciate in order to teach them an instrument that is timeless. We cannot thank Ryan enough for putting the love of piano back in our children.

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Marco M. Jul 23, 2014
Piano · In home

Ryan is hands down one of the best piano instructors I have ever had. He's nice, upbeat, funny, very passionate about what he does, and is a GREAT teacher! Oh, he is also amazing at playing the piano ;) I am naturally a shy person, but from the very first day, Ryan's passion and playful personality made him very easy to be comfortable with, and makes me excited to play everytime. Whenever I mess up, Ryan is great with patience, and will spend as much time as needed until I am finally able to understand, and is more than happy to re-explain to me what in the world a staccato triplet is when my mind completely blanks out.

Overall, Ryan is really one of the best teachers you can find. Many of my other instructors spoon fed me the material and felt almost awkward and uptight to be with. But not only is Ryan fun to be around, but I have learned far more. He helps me as needed, but gives me an opportunity to figure things out myself and it has left a stronger impression on me as a musician. Every week he comes in and I learn something new each time. He challenges me with stuff I would have thought impossible for me to do, and makes me surprise myself with what I am actually capable of doing and makes me stronger, which I think every great teacher does. I am very thankful to have him as my instructor and guide through the fascinating world of piano playing (: I would recommend him highly.

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Yasmin K. Jul 16, 2014
Piano ·

The great thing about Ryan is he's super passionate about what he does. You won't find a more organized, down to earth, patient teacher around.
He's very straight forward when he explains things and you feel comfortable coming to him with questions because he knows what he's talking about and he'll take the time to make sure that by the end you'll understand it too.
I can only give the highest recommendations for Ryan C.

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Sarah O. Jun 5, 2014
Piano · In studio

I was really blown away by Ryan at my first lesson. I had once had lessons way back when I was about 10, and that instructor was very impatient, unreliable and did not seem to put much effort into my lesson. I found the exact opposite with Ryan! He is so patient, always reliable with lessons, and puts forth his best effort when teaching. He really will take the time to help you understand and work on each piece that you learn. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND HIM.

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Jason B. May 28, 2014
Piano · In studio

Such a wonderful teacher. I am an advanced Jazz Piano player and was looking to brush up on my classical chops. Ryan has a methodical approach which makes learning from him very easy and consistent. Very friendly and has a way of making even hard concepts understandable. He actually has me looking forward to practicing my scales, something that is no small feat.

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My Linh D. May 26, 2014
Piano · In studio

Ryan is an outstanding teacher. He is good at getting straight to the point of what needs to be worked on, and provides interesting ways to approach problems, thus helping students improve with more efficiency and enjoyment. Ryan genuinely cares for his students and their experience in their learning/musical journey.
With such an amiable personality and clever musical expertise, I find it hard to go wrong! Ten thousand thumbs up :)

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Jessica S. May 2, 2014
Piano ·

Electric Energy

We are so pleased with Ryan after only a few short months.

My twin 11 year old daughters have taken piano for 4 years, but I have never felt like they were challenged to their full potential. They never developed a comfort level with the piano and it always felt like a chore.

Ryan brings an excitement about music into his lessons that is contagious. He is very good at giving his students confidence to do their best and instilling faith that they can accomplish anything they put their minds to.

I highly recommend Ryan to anyone who might be feeling intimidated by their piano lessons. He makes learning piano fun!

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Gwendolyn N. Apr 23, 2014
Piano ·

Happy Student

We currently have our eleven year old daughter taking lessons from Ryan. My husband and I were searching the county for an instructor that would not only teach classical and theory but also have the patience it takes to teach children. We are pleased to say that we found all these traits in Ryan C. He is a wonderful instructor with a very professional and pleasant demeanor. Our daughter seems so eager to learn from her lessons now that she has an instructor that can relate to her. He truly makes learning a fun experience for Gabby.
Thank you Ryan!

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Luisa S. Feb 23, 2014
Piano ·

our favorite piano teacher

Ryan is been truly amazing with our 10year old granddaughter, she has been taking piano for awhile, but was loosing interest, Ryan was able to get her motivated that I don't tell her anymore to practice, she is back loving piano again and looks forward to her next lesson every week
thank you Ryan, for your positive attitude ,happy face and great way to teach <3

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leah A. Jan 3, 2014
Piano ·


I take my 13 year old daughter for piano lessons with Ryan weekly. He has a strong passion and zeal for his teaching that really comes through. Because of this, she has learned so much in a short time taking lessons from him. Yet, he always knows how to keep it light, fun and go with the flow for her specific needs. Ryan is a pleasure to be around, always with a friendly smile and we truly look forward to seeing him on lesson days.

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Kate P. Sep 21, 2013
Piano ·

Teacher Extraordinaire!

I’ve never had a teacher with a more positive attitude, or a more earnest desire to share his knowledge than Ryan. My interest in music has increased greatly since taking lessons from him. Ryan has been an encouraging, challenging, and thoughtful teacher, and I always come away from my lessons with a better understanding than when I came. I am sincerely grateful for the interest he takes in me as a student, and for his passion for teaching. I am looking forward to learning more about the great musical world!

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Piano Teacher
May 2016 - Present

Music Pillars

I'm a piano teacher at a company called Music Pillars located in Rancho Bernardo.

Jan 2015 - Present

San Diego State University

Piano Accompanist for Vocalists

Pianist / Student
May 2016 - May 2016

Semper Music International Festival

I was accepted into an international music festival which takes place in Vols Am Schlern, Italy, Summer of 2016. I took lessons from Dr. Karen Follingstad, Juan Pablo Andrade, and Frank Levy, amongst others. I performed solo repertoire as well as chamber music.

Classroom Assistant / TA
Feb 2016 - May 2016

San Diego State University

I supervised and assisted teaching Class Piano at San Diego State University for a 100 & 200 level class. These classes involved teaching a classroom of 12-16 students group piano lessons. I covered topics such as chords, scales, harmonization, transposition, score-reading, accompaniment, and others.

Chamber Musician
May 2015 - May 2015

Music Side by Side

I was the pianist in a trio featuring a Cellist & Flutist during a one-week seminar hosted by a trio-in-residence at SDSU called the Neave Trio.

Chamber Musician
May 2015 - May 2015

Mainly Mozart

I was the pianist in a trio featuring two Violinists during a one-week chamber music seminar hosted by a quarter-in-residence at SDSU known as "The Hausmann Quartet"

Jun 2013 - Jun 2014

MiraCosta College Symphony Ochestra

Sound Technician
Jun 2011 - Jun 2013

Summit Church - San Marcos

I was a Sound Tech at Summit Church in San Marcos, CA, where I was responsible for running and maintaining a professional sound reinforcement system.


Bachelor of Music - Piano Performance
Aug 2014 - Present

San Diego State University

Associate of Arts - Piano Performance
Aug 2012 - Feb 2014

MiraCosta College



Fluent / Native Proficiency


Kiwanis Award
Jan 2016

San Diego State University

Applied Music - Full Scholarship Grant
Jan 2013

MiraCosta College


National Association for Music Education
Aug 2014
Founded in 1907, NAfME is among the world’s largest arts education organizations. NAfME advocates at the local, state, and national levels; provides resources for teachers, parents, and administrators; hosts professional development events; and offers a variety of opportunities for students and teachers.

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