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lupe0824

Becoming a piano teacher

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No, unless you want to teach in educational institutions. But you do need to be able to play decently (who wants to take lessons from a teacher who cannot play anyway?).

T.

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Well not only do you need to be able to play decently, you need to be able to be articulate, anaylse problems and have solutions to your students problems.

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Depends on what you mean by "credentials." The strictest sense of the term would involve something like a Master's from Curtis, Julliard, Centenary, Manhattan, etc. (oh I'm being a snob; any accredited conservatory or college will do). However, Suzuki certification certainly counts. Also many consider several years of studying with private teachers a credential as well.

But odd credentials are possible. With a violinist, flutist, etc. anyway, if you are essentially self-taught, but are good enough to have passed an audition and landed a spot with a good orchestra (admittedly rare) I'd certainly consider that a valid "credential." (Maybe others would disagree..let's hear from you if you do)

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Hi,

To be fair to students, a teacher should be qualified first before to start to teach.(private lessons) A music degree is better with proved ability to play very well the instruments. (in this case, piano)

However, in real life nothing is so perfect. Some very good teachers do not have the credentials.

To say they are not qualified is also unfair.

I took private violin lessons for many years ( on and off ) and I had five teachers. One was a violin

professor,one had a master degree in music, others never showed me any credential (not that I want

to check). If I was very serious a student, then I would make sure I follow the instructions of a well qualified teacher.

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The piano world puzzles me. I think most teachers would agree that, at the very least, Chopin was and is the greatest piano composer and possibly player that ever lived. Yet, he was self-taught. He had many students and produced some pedagogical litterature that seems to have vanished from the mind-set of our conservatories. Of course, they like to use his published musical works, but it is difficult to find many truly living his method.

I myself was fortunate to have a piano teacher that embraced Chopin's philosophy and employed his methods for teaching. I do know that the way I was taught would not sit well with most teachers currently teaching.

regards,

E

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I have a questions to all piano teachers out there. Are any type of credentials needed to become a piano teacher?

+++++++++++++++

Both the teacher (music) and his or her students should give recitals every now and then.

All my children's piano teachers (5 0r 6) have done that. All my children gave recitals

in every few months of lessons. You can see their progresses.

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The piano world puzzles me. I think most teachers would agree that, at the very least, Chopin was and is the greatest piano composer and possibly player that ever lived. Yet, he was self-taught. He had many students and produced some pedagogical litterature that seems to have vanished from the mind-set of our conservatories. Of course, they like to use his published musical works, but it is difficult to find many truly living his method.

<BR>

<BR>I myself was fortunate to have a piano teacher that embraced Chopin's philosophy and employed his methods for teaching. I do know that the way I was taught would not sit well with most teachers currently teaching.

<BR>

<BR>regards,

<BR>

<BR>E

Hi folks. I'm a piano teacher just starting viola. Right on, Ecrivain. I had a piano teacher much the same. Chopin solved all the problems but few have caught up with him.

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The profession of teaching piano is totally unregulated. If you want to teach at the college level then a degree is required but most teachers just want to teach kids and beginners for supplemental income. In that case, there are no specific educational requirements. It is highly recommend that you get some formal training in piano teaching, though. Trained teachers are often better and make more money. Plus, if a potential client asks you what your qualifications are, you are not going to look good if you simply say, "I've been taking piano for 5 years." There is a website you should check out. www.becomeapianoteacher.com It's the website for the Wyndham Academy of Music. They offer a 3-month program that leads to a Diploma in Piano Education. You can also go to a conservatory or university that offers a program in Piano Pedagogy. Unfortunately, there aren't many of those around unless you want to get a bachelor's or master's degree.

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I am not particularly convinced that formal piano teaching qualifications count for much.

I have been playing piano for 35 years (at concert level for a while) and have had or worked with a great many teachers. I have also taught a few students privately by request. Many of these teachers have had music degrees and / or ABRSM teaching diplomas. A few were organ scholars. Many of them were rather poor or very poor players, simply unable to demonstrate anything much above Grade 5, especially if they had to sight read it.

This may be OK for beginners, but is useless for more advanced students. So a lot depends on what the teacher is aiming at.

The best teacher I have ever had (who still gives me occasional lessons) has no teaching qualifications at all. She is a young (30 now), Russian trained (in fact intensively trained) regularly working concert pianist, with superb technique and amazing sight reading ability. She misses nothing, always knows how to correct it, and is always able to demonstrate everything. Excellent teacher with an immediate rapport with students.

Hence I do not believe in regulation. If I were a parent or student selecting a teacher, I would ask them to play from their repertoire and also to sight read something and explain to me how to look at it. I would walk pronto if the teacher is unable to demonstrate.

In 35 years of playing and occasional teaching I have never once heard a student or parent ask to see qualifications. It is a complete myth that qualifications enable teachers to charge more. It is teaching ability that enables this - as their list rapidly becomes full.

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"In 35 years of playing and occasional teaching I have never once heard a student or parent ask to see qualifications. It is a complete myth that qualifications enable teachers to charge more. It is teaching ability that enables this - as their list rapidly becomes full."

Interesting, I have been a full time teacher for 10 years and I get asked my qualifications almost everytime. Qualifications alone do not allow you to charge more but qualifications combined with skill are the ideal combination. No matter how good you are, your list never "rapidly becomes full." It takes many months if not years to get a full student load (i.e. 20-30 students).

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Perhaps it depends on where you are and the level.

I live is South East England in an affluent area. Good teachers have a waiting list. These days I mainly deal with teachers who are also performing every week so they are not teaching full time. For example my piano teacher typically has concerts or performances 2-3 days a week. She reserves 1-2 days for practice and rep development and teaches in between. On arriving in the UK (already plugged into the musician network) her available teaching list had acquired waiting list within 8 weeks.

One of the reasons why I did not take up violin when I first bought it, was because it was extremely difficult to find a teacher.

I guess it depends where you are. In our cachement area there are numerous private schools all of which have large music departments. Perhaps surprisingly this generates a lot of demand for additional music teachers as a lot of parents encourage their children to learn an instrument.

I teach electric guitar as well (which I do only for my own pleasure - and only take advanced students). Anyone any good teaching electric guitar is inundated with students. My sons school would happily employ someone to teach guitar full time as they have a long waiting list.

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Hi,

I am finally buying a piano and moving on from my electric keyboard. I have dreamt of this for so long, but have now become confused over what to buy There are so many choices and as this is a purchase for life, I want to get it right. Do you have any tips when deciding what piano to buy or any specific recommendations?

Many thanks,

Simon

1012.gif

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Hi,

I am finally buying a piano and moving on from my electric keyboard. I have dreamt of this for so long, but have now become confused over what to buy There are so many choices and as this is a purchase for life, I want to get it right. Do you have any tips when deciding what piano to buy or any specific recommendations?

Many thanks,

Simon

1012.gif

I was going to say buy a Steinway but there are many other good makers available that will give you an instrument you can enjoy for a lifetime. For example Yamaha instruments can be quite good. You can save some money by buying an older, used, piano by a good maker such as Steinway, Chickering, Baldwin, etc. If there is a college with a concert series near you you could find out who maintains their concert pianos and see what that person recommends. If you've never played much on a real piano you should try a bunch because it is important to have an idea of what you like in the way of sound and the feel of the action.

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I think it is important that a teacher should have a significant amount of formal training because, as with most instruments, it is very easy for people to develop bad habits which eventually inhibit their progress or even result in injury. Some people can play very well with bad technique and teach it to their students who may get injured doing the same things. We all recognise that people doing workouts with weights can injure themselves very easily if their technique is wrong; it's the same with piano playing. What kind of injuries you ask? Tendinitis; bursitis; hand, arm, shoulder, back, and neck pain; focal dystonia; carpal tunnel syndrome; and others.

And it isn't just piano playing that can injure people. String or wind players can also be injured from improper playing. Get a teacher who understands this and also is a good musician and a good teacher. This might not be so easy so keep looking if you try a teacher and aren't happy with your experience. Ask for a trial period of lessons to see how both you and the teacher feel about each other.

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It's really good to have formal training, but there is no law about it. The local music teachers association has memberships at several levels including those without certification. They do require a police background check to make sure you're not a child molester. I am not certified at all, but I was taught by a concert pianist of some fame, William Stevens. He was the pianist who toured with Bob Hope on those USO shows, for those of you who remember. He teacher was Mme. Hubert, in Montreal who had come over from France and had been a personal friend of Maurice Ravel. He was old school strict and a delight to learn from. An amazing sense of humour and a facility for accents, and characterisations. I have a recording of "Bill" playing Gaspard de la Nuit, by Ravel, and I know it has to be definitive. He learned it from Mme, Hubert.

I don't have the depth of training that a true pianist has, but I teach and I do find it hard to get students. I charge less and I also tune pianos and do small repairs. There is a multi-certificated teacher nearby who is very successful and she thinks I play better than she does. She's wrong I'm sure, but it was nice to hear.

I have been playing since I was two or three, but I came to Mr. Stevens as an adult and I had several bad habits to unlearn. Finding a teacher that knew how to teach adults was a delight. Instead of talking down to me, he made me feel like I was a concert pianist who had just come by for a few pointers, (and they did, by the way). Bill was occasionally called up by the Toronto Royal Conservatory, I was told, to settle matters which they couldn't decide upon. He died in the spring of 1997, I was suppose to drive his to the hospital because he'd been having chest pains and they worried him. As we were going to the car, he had a massive heart attack and was gone a week later. All that talent and a lifetime of music gone in a few moments. Sadness.

many other Bill stories. Some amazing, some funny. Maybe later if anyone want to hear them.

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It's really good to have formal training, but there is no law about it. The local music teachers association has memberships at several levels including those without certification. They do require a police background check to make sure you're not a child molester. I am not certified at all, but I was taught by a concert pianist of some fame, William Stevens. He was the pianist who toured with Bob Hope on those USO shows, for those of you who remember. He teacher was Mme. Hubert, in Montreal who had come over from France and had been a personal friend of Maurice Ravel. He was old school strict and a delight to learn from. An amazing sense of humour and a facility for accents, and characterisations. I have a recording of "Bill" playing Gaspard de la Nuit, by Ravel, and I know it has to be definitive. He learned it from Mme, Hubert.

I don't have the depth of training that a true pianist has, but I teach and I do find it hard to get students. I charge less and I also tune pianos and do small repairs. There is a multi-certificated teacher nearby who is very successful and she thinks I play better than she does. She's wrong I'm sure, but it was nice to hear.

I have been playing since I was two or three, but I came to Mr. Stevens as an adult and I had several bad habits to unlearn. Finding a teacher that knew how to teach adults was a delight. Instead of talking down to me, he made me feel like I was a concert pianist who had just come by for a few pointers, (and they did, by the way). Bill was occasionally called up by the Toronto Royal Conservatory, I was told, to settle matters which they couldn't decide upon. He died in the spring of 1997, I was suppose to drive his to the hospital because he'd been having chest pains and they worried him. As we were going to the car, he had a massive heart attack and was gone a week later. All that talent and a lifetime of music gone in a few moments. Sadness.

many other Bill stories. Some amazing, some funny. Maybe later if anyone want to hear them.

It's really important to have a teacher who knows what good technique is and teaches it. In my experience many musical instrument teachers do not teach technique and, perhaps, don't even know what it is. They operate with an attitude of if it works it's good. There is an ergonomic aspect to playing an instrument, neglect of which can lead to injury or disability. Even fine virtuosos sometimes have disabling technique. We hear about so-called repetitive stress injuries as in the cases of Gary Graffman and Leon Fleischer but very many less well known pianists are injured and suffer a limitation in their careers. Actually it's the stress that's bad, not the repetition. Properly done motion is not injurious. It's a problem that musicians don't understand this. There is an idea that if someone can play at the virtuoso level he/she plays well, but in fact the actual technique, not the bravura, might be very bad. There is a wonderful book by Janet Horvath, Playing (less) Hurt, which every musician should read. She is a cellist in the Minnesota Orchestra who became injured and almost had to end her career. She found that she had to work hard and do a lot of research to heal herself and wrote the book to share what she found out. An enormous number of musicians have constant pain while playing and they don't have to.

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Hello Everybody,

 

I used to play piano when I was a child trough teenage years (around 10 years).  I used to have small concerts in Venezuela ( where I grew up) and I stop playing because I decided to studied  Early Childhood Education, Child Development  and  psychology in ABA ( Applied Behavior Analysis) in Boca Raton, FL. Now  I am thinking to get it back but it has been hard. ( I have all the books I played and everything) but I feel that I forgot how to read it or the notes. I need an instructor to push me back to it and remember everything of it..

 

I moved to Greenville, SC I am interested in having a teacher but not expensive. Where is the best place to find one?  I am also interested later on in teach adults and childrens.

 

Thanks

 

Cristina Fernandez

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Depends on what you mean by "credentials." The strictest sense of the term would involve something like a Master's from Curtis, Julliard, Centenary, Manhattan, etc. (oh I'm being a snob; any accredited conservatory or college will do). However, Suzuki certification certainly counts. Also many consider several years of studying with private teachers a credential as well.

But odd credentials are possible. With a violinist, flutist, etc. anyway, if you are essentially self-taught, but are good enough to have passed an audition and landed a spot with a good orchestra (admittedly rare) I'd certainly consider that a valid "credential." (Maybe others would disagree..let's hear from you if you do)

I don't have a music degree. But I do know something about teaching..... teaching anything.  It's about communication. And I do not believe all people come with equal aptitude in communication. Just because you can play the piano does not mean you can communicate with a child or adult.  I don't know how you prove "credentials" in communication. Someone with a low aptitude in communication will never be a decent teacher.

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Credential does matter, if you want to apply for some reputed music academy. They will check all your music degree and all the formal education. However, more than any credential to be a piano teacher, particularly you need perfection in all the piano techniques and tricks. You should be able to make students understand lesson and motivate them, to take them to the next level. If you have all these qualities, then you can definitely become a success piano teacher.

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