My love of the piano began at an early age. I started traditional lessons at five years old and have enjoyed playing all my life. In the beginning I struggled with music reading. I learned my music lessons by ear.
However, my lessons continued to be focused on reading only. Since I was never encouraged to listen to my pieces or to recordings of pianists playing classical music, I grew up thinking that somehow developing the ear was not a legitimate part of music education. Since I was so motivated, I eventually learned to read.
I practiced diligently and advanced quickly. However, without any piano technique training (posture, balance, finger movement) and no demonstration, I wasn't able to control my fingers. I couldn't master anything so I never felt "ready" or confident to play for people. I developed pain in my arms and fingers as I practiced more, but never told anyone, thinking that was a sacrifice that all pianists made as they played advanced repertoire.
I continued piano study at Oberlin College Conservatory of Music and received a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance. During my senior year I encountered the Suzuki method of teaching music. I attended a lecture/demonstration by the Japanese Suzuki violin teacher who had studied under the founder, Dr. Shinichi Suzuki. When the teacher explained Suzuki philosophy and I heard her students play with such amazing technical facility, and so very musically from their hearts, I knew this was what I wanted to pursue after graduation!
My dream came true when I had the privilege of being one of the first Americans to study with Dr. Haruko Kataoka, co-founder of the Suzuki Piano method, and with Dr. Suzuki at the Talent Education Institute in Matsumoto, Japan. Thanks to Dr. Kataoka I received the solid technical foundation I needed to play with control, beautiful expression, and without pain. I pass this on to all my students.
After Japan, I pioneered the first Suzuki Piano program for students and teachers in Oberlin, Ohio. In following years I pioneered programs in my studios in: Bloomington, IN; Indianapolis, IN; Richmond, KY; and EKU music dept. preparatory division; Greenville, NC; presently I give piano lessons in Huntersville and the Lake Norman area of NC. I also traveled to 19 states and Canada teaching at short-term institutes as a certified Teacher Trainer with SAA (Suzuki Assoc. of the Americas). My initial Parent Education program was presented at a National Suzuki Teacher's Conference.
My sons were raised in Suzuki method, one in violin from age 4, and one in piano from age 7. I had the joy of seeing both sons develop not only outstanding musical ability, but character traits of sensitivity, discipline, and endurance. I know how to help parents assist with music lessons.
My passion is to help develop the whole person - each unique, in an atmosphere of love and encouragement, using music as the means to that end.
I teach Suzuki and traditional method piano lessons in Huntersville, NC.
Piano lessons in Huntersville, NC