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#1539815 - 10/20/10 11:23 PM Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia?  
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PeteF Offline
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Hi, I was wondering if teachers in Sydney, Australia could give me a bit of a guide as to the range of rates I can expect to pay for a teacher? I'm an adult beginner in Asquith.

The other question, this time to all here, is what duration of lesson do you feel gives the most benefits? When I've been tutored in other areas I wouldn't consider less than an hour, but with the piano in all honestly I am getting pretty tired after a solid, say, 50 minute session. At the moment it's fine, when I see myself starting to make mistakes I simply stop and do something else for a while. But when I'm with a teacher I don't want to be wasting this time. I figured there must be a compromise between very short lessons, where time is spent on pleasantries and just warming up, versus longer lessons when fatigue starts to become a factor.

Pete


No that wasn't a bum note! It was my ... "artistic interpretation" emerging.
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#1539898 - 10/21/10 02:29 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: PeteF]  
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Pedagogia Offline
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Hi Pete
The current minimum rate (not inc GST) set by the NSW Music Teachers Association is $66/hr. This may vary according the location and teacher qualifications. Some charge more, some charge less.

good luck
BB

#1539903 - 10/21/10 02:42 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: PeteF]  
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currawong Offline
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Down Under
I'm not exactly in Sydney, but near enough. You'll find a bit of variation, but I believe the MTA of NSW recommends a minimum fee of $65-70 p.h.

edit: cross-posted with BBBB smile


Du holde Kunst...
#1539908 - 10/21/10 02:52 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: currawong]  
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PeteF Offline
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Thank you both. That was a bit more than I was expecting so I'm glad I asked here first. Not that it's unreasonable, just that I simply had absolutely no idea so without actually working it out was imagining something more like 50ish p.h.

To the second part of my question, is an hour lesson duration considered "standard"? Are there alternative duration lessons? Finally, I presume one lesson per week is also considered the norm?

Pete


No that wasn't a bum note! It was my ... "artistic interpretation" emerging.
#1539911 - 10/21/10 02:58 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: PeteF]  
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currawong Offline
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Down Under
Originally Posted by PeteF
To the second part of my question, is an hour lesson duration considered "standard"? Are there alternative duration lessons? Finally, I presume one lesson per week is also considered the norm?
Like the fee, that can also vary from teacher to teacher. I would say one lesson per week is the norm, and the length depends to a large extent on how advanced you are, and therefore how long the pieces you work on are. My beginner adult students generally have a half-hour lesson to start with.


Du holde Kunst...
#1539913 - 10/21/10 03:07 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: PeteF]  
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Originally Posted by PeteF
The other question, this time to all here, is what duration of lesson do you feel gives the most benefits?
Lesson length depends somewhat on the student and teacher involved. Half hour, three-quarter hour, and full hour lessons are what I consider to be the possibilities under normal circumstances, just for convenience of scheduling. I don't suppose teachers in Sydney would be very far different. One possible compromise (only if time and distance permit it easily) would be to have two half-hours per week.

In general, students doing advanced music have more to work on and perhaps (hopefully) smile a longer attention span, so they have the longer lessons. Little children generally need short lessons because their attention wanders after a few minutes.

Adult beginners are sort of a special situation, because in general they have the long attention span but perhaps don't cover enough music per day to easily fill an hour. With my current group of adult beginners, I find either a half hour or perhaps a 45 minute lesson is enough.

If you find yourself wishing your lesson was a different length, discuss it with your teacher.

If I were an adult beginner today and my new teacher asked me what lesson length I wanted, I would say I want to start with half an hour and then increase if we need it.


(I'm a piano teacher.)
#1539915 - 10/21/10 03:16 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: currawong]  
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Ok thanks, that will give me something to expect.

As mentioned I'm just a beginner and have only been playing 5 weeks. At the moment I'm studying Arpeggios and Triplets and I'm finding my hands get physically tired. I don't think there's anything actually wrong with my hand position, simply the fact that my muscles in my hands haven't got used to this new action yet. At the moment 30 minutes would probably be good if I was doing a lot of this type of work, however I hope by the time I get a teacher I will be more accustomed to playing so could go a bit longer. Unless I run into aches etc that seem to be more from bad technique, my intention is to finish the course I'm doing and then seek out suitable teachers. I have one in the street I live in so it would be terrific if that worked out.

Thanks again for the info.

Pete


No that wasn't a bum note! It was my ... "artistic interpretation" emerging.
#1539925 - 10/21/10 03:38 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: PeteF]  
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Tired hands are generally not something to worry about. Practice, rest, practice, rest, and it will get better. (99% chance that your hands are just getting a bit stiff from doing work that they aren't used to.) As you play more difficult music, what you do not want is to get persistent bad aches in your forearms from playing. That would indicate you were doing something seriously wrong. (So far, you are not even capable of playing any of the music that would cause this problem, so nothing to worry about there either.)

Good luck - hope it all works out well.


(I'm a piano teacher.)
#1539971 - 10/21/10 05:55 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: david_a]  
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Thanks David I appreciate that. Yes that's pretty much exactly what I'm now doing and I'm not really worried about the tiredness as it makes sense that they should be. In the last few days I've changed from playing mainly chords to these new movements constantly, so my poor little fingers are getting a bit of a workout! The tiredness is in the top of my right hand and a little in my wrist; in other words precisely the muscles Mr Arpeggio likes to use. I guess the only frustrating thing is that it's restricting me from playing more as normally I'd like to play 2 hours a day (plus another hour of theory) ... after that my brain melts down anyway and my fingers are the least of my worries laugh

Pete


No that wasn't a bum note! It was my ... "artistic interpretation" emerging.
#1540003 - 10/21/10 07:24 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: PeteF]  
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PeteF - you've been studying for 5 weeks now. Does this mean you do or don't have a teacher?! Plenty of good teachers in Sydney charge a little more than the figures listed, but I'd think that as an adult beginner a 30 minute lesson would be plenty - unless you are doing LOADS of practice (2 hours a day?!), in which case 45 minutes would be better. An hour is not too long if you are working with a teacher who really knows their stuff - the lesson will move from one aspect to another and you shouldn't feel weary, unless you are genuinely sleep-deprived.

Issues such as sore hands from practicing would be sorted quickly in a lesson where the teacher can see exactly what you are doing that is causing the strain......


Teacher, Composer, Writer, Speaker
Working with Hal Leonard, Alfred, Faber, and Australian Music Examination Board
Music in syllabuses by ABRSM, AMEB, Trinity Guildhall, ANZCA, NZMEB, and more
www.elissamilne.wordpress.com
#1540466 - 10/21/10 06:40 PM PW's longest post! [Re: Elissa Milne]  
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PeteF Offline
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Originally Posted by Elissa Milne
PeteF - you've been studying for 5 weeks now. Does this mean you do or don't have a teacher?!


Hi Elissa, thanks for taking the time to reply. Sorry, the previous day I posted another question with more on "my story" so didn't want to bore people by repeating, but basically the situation is that yes I have been studying about 5-6 weeks. I was involved in a car accident where I was knocked off my bicycle and injured, luckily nothing too serious, just some broken bones. Unfortunately after some months, one of the bones didn't heal and so it's meant another operation to insert another plate. I'll spare the details, but the past 18 months I've had a string of really "bad luck" with regards health and injuries and the thought of yet more time off work was a bit depressing (I work as an airline pilot when I'm not in hospital as a semi-professional patient). Sooooo I decided maybe a change of attitude was in order and instead of spending this additional time moaning and whining to all who would listen about my rotten luck, I'd see it as a window of opportunity to do something I'd always had in the back of my mind. So while I'm sure you're now regretting posting, that's, in a nut-shell, how I came to be here. laugh

Unlike the lady in the white Suzuki doing the illegal U-turn, I could see this operation coming, and it gave me a small opportunity to race out and grab a DP. However clearly I wasn't going to be able to physically get to a teacher afterwards, nor did I want to spend the precious time before they carted me off again finding one. Instead I bought a DVD course and am working my way through that. However I've always known it was an interim measure, basically just to dip my toe in the water to see if I liked this, learn a bit more about the field, and of course overcome that physical limitation. I'm approaching half way through the course now. Yes I try to either practice (new material/exercises) or play (butcher learnt material by long-dead composers) 2 hours a day. I also watch a series on music theory put together by Andrew Furmanczky another hour or so each night. Once I'm back at work I will, of course, not be able to spare as much time, and possibly no time at all when I'm away with work. But that's a hurdle I'll overcome when I get to it.

With regards the hand soreness, as mentioned above I'm not too worried about this, though it's frustrating to be "wasting" this time waiting for my body to catch up. I also have an interest in exercise physiology ... err, as you do, and the muscle soreness makes sense since I've gone from previously having done mainly chords to basically all triplet/arpeggio movements on my fingers. While you would never believe it if you could see the way I slouch at my desk, I'm actually quite disciplined at the piano, since I'm aware that bad posture/hand position leads to bad habits which lead to bad injuries!

I appreciate the mention that the lessons could be more than stated. I basically just don't want to be in a situation where I'm subjected to "sticker shock" and rule out teachers who I think are asking too much, only to later find out that's the normal rate.

Pete

PS thanks to lurking on the thread about students who test patience (or patients in my case), if you see a student rolling up to your door with cheat notes** written down his arm in big black marker, you'll know who it is!

** Notes will read:
Don't be early
Don't be late
Don't pick my nose
Don't, whatever I do, fart too much!

Last edited by PeteF; 10/21/10 06:47 PM.

No that wasn't a bum note! It was my ... "artistic interpretation" emerging.
#1540734 - 10/22/10 03:37 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: PeteF]  
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Originally Posted by PeteF
Thanks David I appreciate that. Yes that's pretty much exactly what I'm now doing and I'm not really worried about the tiredness as it makes sense that they should be. In the last few days I've changed from playing mainly chords to these new movements constantly, so my poor little fingers are getting a bit of a workout! The tiredness is in the top of my right hand and a little in my wrist; in other words precisely the muscles Mr Arpeggio likes to use. I guess the only frustrating thing is that it's restricting me from playing more as normally I'd like to play 2 hours a day (plus another hour of theory) ... after that my brain melts down anyway and my fingers are the least of my worries laugh

Pete
Keep your wrists flexible at all times. Doesn't mean they have to be in constant motion, only that they must never ever be held stiff.


(I'm a piano teacher.)
#1540737 - 10/22/10 03:55 AM Re: PW's longest post! [Re: PeteF]  
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Daffodil Offline
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In a big country
Originally Posted by PeteF
...** Notes will read:
Don't be early
Don't be late
Don't pick my nose
Don't, whatever I do, fart too much!


OK, so how many are allowed before 'too much'? eek laugh


Daffodil - Onslow's twin.
Hailun 178
#1540742 - 10/22/10 04:07 AM Re: PW's longest post! [Re: Daffodil]  
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keyboardklutz Offline
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London, UK (though if it's Aug...
You mean long-haul!


snobbyish, yet maybe helpful.
http://keyboardclass.blogspot.com/

#1540750 - 10/22/10 04:24 AM Re: PW's longest post! [Re: PeteF]  
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Is there a piano transcription of Mendelssohn's Meeresstille und Gl├╝ckliche Fart that we should keep on the shelf for such occasions?

Sorry Felix. smile


(I'm a piano teacher.)
#1540763 - 10/22/10 05:51 AM Re: Hourly rates for a teacher in Sydney, Australia? [Re: david_a]  
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Originally Posted by david_a
Keep your wrists flexible at all times. Doesn't mean they have to be in constant motion, only that they must never ever be held stiff.


Thanks for the tip David, will do! Today I did a few hours, again arpeggios and triplets and no real aching at all, but I was up on black keys a lot more so I think that made it much easier.

Pete


No that wasn't a bum note! It was my ... "artistic interpretation" emerging.

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