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#1765484 - 10/05/11 09:08 PM Tips on Finding a Teacher?  
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 2,690
ClsscLib Offline

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ClsscLib  Offline

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Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 2,690
Northern VA, U.S.
I live in the Virginia suburbs of D.C. and I'm about to start piano. It's my second instrument, having played classical bass since... a long time ago.

The problem is, I don't know any other pianists and I don't know any piano teachers in the area. I imagine that most who do teach beginners concentrate on kids (and may avoid adult beginners, if one of the threads under "Piano Teachers" is any indication).

I'm motivated, disciplined, willing to pay in advance, and willing to pay top teaching scale. In return I'd like a teacher who knows what he or she is doing -- who can play and teach -- someone who's demanding and inspirational. I don't need a friend, nor do I need someone who's primarily focused on making me feel good about myself. I have dogs for that.

I want to start at the beginning and get the fundamentals right, but I'd also like to be encouraged to progress as quickly as my pianistic accomplishments warrant.

I'm betting that dozens of you -- maybe more -- have sought out and found that kind of teacher.

How do you suggest I go about doing it?




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#1765782 - 10/06/11 10:37 AM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
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Kymber Offline
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Kymber  Offline
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MA
Hi CLssLib,
I know someone in VA that might know of a teacher or two. Don't know much about them but at least it might be a place to start. I will email her and get their contact info.

Then, you might want to go for a trial lesson. Let them know what you are looking for in a teacher and what you would like to accomplish and see if you make a good match. I've had some really great teachers and some not so great teachers. But, I learned something from all of them. So, my advice would be that as long as the person doesn't make you miserable they might be worth a shot.


“The doubters said, "Man cannot fly," The doers said, "Maybe, but we'll try,"
And finally soared in the morning glow while non-believers watched from below.”
― Bruce Lee
#1765808 - 10/06/11 11:08 AM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: Kymber]  
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ClsscLib Offline

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ClsscLib  Offline

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Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 2,690
Northern VA, U.S.
Thanks for the observations, Kymber -- I'd be very grateful for any Virginia contacts that you might be able to forward!


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"People may say I can't sing, but no one can ever say I didn't sing."

-- Florence Foster Jenkins
#1765832 - 10/06/11 11:53 AM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
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ten left thumbs Offline
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Scotland
1. Don't believe everything you read on the teacher's forum. smile
2. Ask around and tell potential teachers what you want. In as many words. Ask if they can give it.

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#1765835 - 10/06/11 11:56 AM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
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JimF Offline
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JimF  Offline
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south florida
Ask for recommendations at piano stores that carry mostly high end pianos.

Call the head of the local RPT chapter and ask him/her if they know who the very best teachers are in the area.

Call the best university music program in the area and ask.


Then call the teachers and ask questions. Set up a trial lesson with two that you find most promising.


Tarantella, Pieczonka
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#1765837 - 10/06/11 12:01 PM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
Joined: Jun 2009
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A Rebours Offline
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A Rebours  Offline
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Originally Posted by ClsscLib
I live in the Virginia suburbs of D.C. and I'm about to start piano. It's my second instrument, having played classical bass since... a long time ago.

The problem is, I don't know any other pianists and I don't know any piano teachers in the area.


Hi, ClsscLib,

Check out the Adult Music Student Forum web site: amsfperform.org

Go the links tab on the homepage and you will find a link for Teachers. They list 3 chapters of the Music Teachers Assoc. You could start there.

Since you are in the Wash D.C. area you can see that there are a lot of opportunities for amateurs list on the Adult Music Student Forum that you can take advantage of.

AR


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#1765849 - 10/06/11 12:24 PM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: A Rebours]  
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ClsscLib Offline

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ClsscLib  Offline

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Joined: Mar 2008
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Northern VA, U.S.
Originally Posted by A Rebours

Hi, ClsscLib,

Check out the Adult Music Student Forum web site: amsfperform.org

Go the links tab on the homepage and you will find a link for Teachers. They list 3 chapters of the Music Teachers Assoc. You could start there.

Since you are in the Wash D.C. area you can see that there are a lot of opportunities for amateurs list on the Adult Music Student Forum that you can take advantage of.

AR


Very helpful; thanks!



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"People may say I can't sing, but no one can ever say I didn't sing."

-- Florence Foster Jenkins
#1766029 - 10/06/11 05:36 PM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: JimF]  
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ClsscLib Offline

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ClsscLib  Offline

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Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 2,690
Northern VA, U.S.
Originally Posted by JimF
Ask for recommendations at piano stores that carry mostly high end pianos.

Call the head of the local RPT chapter and ask him/her if they know who the very best teachers are in the area.

Call the best university music program in the area and ask.


Then call the teachers and ask questions. Set up a trial lesson with two that you find most promising.


Jim, forgive my ignorance, but what does "RPT" stand for?


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"People may say I can't sing, but no one can ever say I didn't sing."

-- Florence Foster Jenkins
#1766180 - 10/06/11 09:51 PM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
Joined: Sep 2008
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Kymber Offline
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MA
This is the info my friend gave me. Not sure if this is near you or not.

"Well for the NORTHERN VA area we have: Minton's Music Academy and School of Rock (both in Ashburn) also in Sterling there is Melody Music.  I have heard great things about all three places.
 
The teacher Chrissy had in L'burg was not very good (according to Christina).  She said she was old and cranky....so screw that!"


“The doubters said, "Man cannot fly," The doers said, "Maybe, but we'll try,"
And finally soared in the morning glow while non-believers watched from below.”
― Bruce Lee
#1766183 - 10/06/11 09:54 PM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
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ClsscLib Offline

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ClsscLib  Offline

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Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 2,690
Northern VA, U.S.
Thanks, Kymber. I'll follow up on those leads!


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"People may say I can't sing, but no one can ever say I didn't sing."

-- Florence Foster Jenkins
#1766199 - 10/06/11 10:57 PM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
Joined: Apr 2010
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Andy Platt Offline
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Andy Platt  Offline
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Virginia, USA
I just sent you a PM with details of my teacher (based in Fall's Church). Good luck!!


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#1766482 - 10/07/11 01:20 PM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
Joined: Oct 2009
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JimF Offline
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JimF  Offline
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south florida
Sorry ClssLib, RPT stands for Registered Piano Technician, and what I really should have said is call the head of the local chapter of the PTG, which is the Piano Technicians Guild. There is a Northern Virginia Chapter and also a DC Chapter. My own RPT is a wealth of information about everything piano in our area.

Here is the site for the national organization. I think you can get to the chapters from there. PTG. org site


Tarantella, Pieczonka
Sonatine, No.2 Menuet - MRavel


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#1766574 - 10/07/11 05:24 PM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: JimF]  
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ClsscLib Offline

Platinum Supporter until Jan 02 2013
ClsscLib  Offline

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Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 2,690
Northern VA, U.S.
Jim, thanks for the help.

And I got your PM'd suggestions, Andy -- very helpful!


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"People may say I can't sing, but no one can ever say I didn't sing."

-- Florence Foster Jenkins
#1767180 - 10/09/11 04:11 AM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 4
Albert Frantz Offline
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Albert Frantz  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 4
Vienna, Austria
Hi,

I recently wrote an article on how to find a piano teacher and wish to add some remarks.

Above all, I second the recommendation above on getting in touch with the local university music department, which should be able to point you in the right direction.

ClsscLib, I think you have exactly the right attitude to succeed:

Quote
I'm motivated, disciplined, willing to pay in advance, and willing to pay top teaching scale. In return I'd like a teacher who knows what he or she is doing -- who can play and teach -- someone who's demanding and inspirational. I don't need a friend, nor do I need someone who's primarily focused on making me feel good about myself.

With this attitude -- and foresight -- I'm sure you'll get the most out of a top teacher. Please let us know of your progress.


Wishing you success,

Albert

#1767248 - 10/09/11 10:36 AM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
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ClsscLib Offline

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ClsscLib  Offline

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Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 2,690
Northern VA, U.S.
Thanks for all the leads and tips!

Albert, thanks especially for posting your kind thoughts and the link to your article.



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"People may say I can't sing, but no one can ever say I didn't sing."

-- Florence Foster Jenkins
#1767345 - 10/09/11 02:05 PM Re: Tips on Finding a Teacher? [Re: ClsscLib]  
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Piano*Dad Offline
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Williamsburg, VA
Quote
I imagine that most who do teach beginners concentrate on kids (and may avoid adult beginners, if one of the threads under "Piano Teachers" is any indication).


Just don't be a ...... a ...... fickle adult. grin

If you have another instrument under your belt, so to speak, you're a different sort of beginner. The vocabulary of music is already in your mind and in your hands. That changes the equation quite a bit.

In northern VA you have access to lots of faculty associated with various universities and community colleges. You might just call people at GMU, for starters, to see where you get. Even if you don't wind up studying with one of them, people on the faculty may have very good leads for you to follow regarding good teachers in the community.



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