- What's the best age for a child to start taking piano lessons?
All other things being equal, seven years of age is ideal. By that
age, a child's reading and math skills and their ability to follow through
on daily practice have developed to the point where he or she can become a
very self-sufficient musician. (But see next item.)
- What if my child starts sooner?
Children as young as four or five can be successful piano learners.
They will need more help practicing at home, but if they are highly
motivated and especially if there are other musicians in the household,
they can do quite well.
- What if my child starts later?
Later beginners can usually "make up for lost time" quite easily.
They generally have a good solid base of musical knowledge from their
school and often have been waiting anxiously to start lessons. They
have good hand-eye coordination and the ability to pick up new concepts
quickly. In addition, because they have such an affinity for music,
practicing is very enjoyable to them.
- Do you teach adults?
Beginning and returning adult students are most welcome. Playing the
piano simply for pleasure and relaxation can be a rewarding experience. Adult students usually find learning to play the piano to be very easy,
and those who had lessons as children regain their skills quickly. Some
adults find they are much more motivated than they were as children because now THEY are choosing to learn to play.
- How long should my child practice each day?
The key words here are "each day". Regular practicing is by far the
best. Beginners can start with as little as 10 or 15 minutes per day. With guidance from the teacher, gradually working up to 30 minutes per day
is sufficient for most students. Advanced students should be aiming for
45 to 60 minutes. Remember, all practice may be broken into smaller
"chunks" of time and spread out through the day. Another hint about
practicing, students should be helped to find the BEST time of day to
practice. Having a regular time period for training fingers and brains is
a real plus.
- How often are lessons given?
Lessons are scheduled for once a week.
- How long is each lesson?
Lessons are 30 minutes in length.
- Where are the lessons given?
Lessons are given at a private studio located on Wisconsin
Avenue in the Village of Grafton. (see Studio)
- Are lessons available year-round?
Yes, lessons are available during both the school
year and the summer. Summer can be a good time to work on new repertoire
(pop songs, folk songs, show tunes) as well as maintain good playing
skills. In addition, most school age students actually have MORE
available practice time in the summer because homework and other school
activities have temporarily stopped.
- Do your students play in recitals?
Yes! Sometimes playing the piano can be a rather
lonely pursuit. No one hears the student besides his or her teacher
and family. Recitals are a great way to hear others and to be
heard. At the semi-annual recitals, students and their families hear new
and interesting repertoire, some old favorites, and also are afforded a
chance to hear how other students are progressing.
- What is Federation?
The Wisconsin Federation of Music Clubs, an affiliate of the
National Federation of Music Clubs,
sponsors a music festival each
At the festival, participants can enter as soloists, duets,
or in a variety of other ensembles.
Students also have the option of being tested on their knowledge of music
Participating students prepare two memorized pieces to play for a judge.
plays one required piece (from a published list of music) plus one piece
of the student's own choosing.
The student is rated on a scale of 1-5 points (with
5 being the highest rating) and receives a certificate in addition to the
judge's written critique. When a student has participated for at least
three years, he or she may earn a gold cup. Thereafter, each time a
multiple of 15 points is reached, another gold cup is earned. While the
gold cups and the certificates are nice rewards, probably the best part
of participating in Federation is actually preparing the two pieces in
great depth and then performing them. It can be a great experience for