Students of any age can understand the piano. We, as humans, engage in music primarily out of the desire for the enjoyment it brings and community it creates. I want my student's experience to be full of joy and success. Therefore I am patient in regards to expectations we as adults might want to bring to our music-making.. My work is as much about the process as the outcome.We explore, on a very person level, what the student is able to bring to the piano, initiating a better understanding of their instrument along with allowing me to serve them in the best way possible. You will observe what patient and engaged listening, and play, can achieve during each lesson. It's miraculous.
As an instructor, a clear awareness of a student’s sound choices, that in the beginning might depend primarily on their physical dexterity and accessibility, allows student's to become more invested in the music they might play. Considering attributes such as: cultural sound profiles and vocabulary, body memory, technique, and interests in exploration, all add to ones willingness to take risks and enjoy themselves during the process.
Lessons, with Ms. Watt, allow students to explore, compose and improvised music on the piano.
This new, accessible and healthy acoustic awareness leads to great sense of personal enrichment.
I assess present skill level, aptitude and interest in learning music, motor skills/coordination, climate of mind (stress level regarding our work together) as well as what has been retained from their time with any prior piano teacher.
We have 60mins together. I do my best to make it glow with value, laughter and support. I want all of my students to know I'm with them on this journey. Pretty soon students are able to decide what they'd like to do at home at the piano. It will have to do with exploration, 'play', coordination, listening and doing what makes them feel good at the time.
Several times in our time together she's been near tears. Music can bring this out in us. That said, she is learning to play and explore her instrument as to what the piano does/will do/can do (registers, touch, etc), Technique (body alignment/posture, arm and hand placement, finger involvement) and Listening (how did that sound happen, how can I recreate something I really liked). Intuitive playing with Technique and eventually Music Theory are all there for us to explore together in time.
Instead of memorizing something on a page that doesn't speak to all of her senses (actual senses, other than just visual), she or any of my students will have all the knowledge, technique, listening prowess and theory they need to help them create the music they wish to play and hear. In this, I'm creating independence from both myself and the page. This will develop the participant’s potential, readying them for: recitals, concerts, competitions, gigs or simply build new healthy acoustic awareness towards personal enrichment. Specific attention is spent on the following important qualities: technique, phrasing, expression/interpretation, preparedness/stage presence, and sight reading.