May Piano News 2017

Can I just say again one more time what a wonderful job was done by all the students at our recital!  Your children are just amazing and I appreciate all the work you parents put in to helping that all come together!  A huge thank you to Nada Malica for providing those awesome red cowboys hats and bandanas and to all of you who brought the delicious and creative refreshments!!  They were pretty special!
Well, we are on the downhill slide towards the end of the year with just a very few weeks of lessons left!  This is the time of year where sports enter the picture and can create a bit of a schedule juggle for some which is why a few years ago I moved the recital from beginning of June to end of April/early May!
The studio will break for the summer on June 9th, but I will give you just a few important dates to mark on your calendars right now as I have a couple of days away and many of  the students have requested one more master class before the end of the year!  This will also add in a little bit of flexibility to those of you dealing with sports schedules, so here it is:

NO LESSONS FOR TUES, WED and MON coming up!!
Tuesday, May 16th, Wednesday May 17th and Monday, May 22nd, there will be NO lessons…for a variety of reasons but one very important one is that I have some dental work that has to happen on the afternoon of Tuesday May 16th.  Monday, May 22 is the holiday Monday.  We will still finish the year with all 34 lessons no matter which day of the week your lessons fell on (Thursday students had to miss a lesson back in March when I was away at a convention).
MASTERCLASSES MAY 29-JUNE1
Our final masterclass of the year will be the week of May 29-June 1st.  This will not be our last class of the year, we will have one more regular class/lesson of the year the following week to wrap up and give students their summer assignments. Some years we have wrapped with a master class at the very end of the year, but this year due to some sports activity scheduling and my involvement in both the Children’s Festival AND my daughter’s grad that week just seemed like a good fit.  This master class will be for all ages and level (including Sunshine 1 kids) and I’ll send out a sign up sheet very shortly.
LAST WEEK OF LESSONS and Summer Lessons
The last week of lessons will be June 5-8 and then we will break for the summer.  Regular lessons and classes will resume on September 11th.  Summer lessons in a package of 3 will be available to those private students who are wanting to work towards a particular exam or complete a certain level that they may be partly through before lessons resume in September.  These three lessons will be able to be booked over the summer months around traveling and holiday schedules….more details to come in the next couple of weeks.
Well that should be enough information for now.  I am now opening up registration for new MYC students for the fall, so if you know of any preschoolers or students ages 5-7 years of age interested in beginning lessons, they are now free to email or call and even visit a class!

 

March Piano News

Here are some updates and news for the month of March!
SPRING BREAK
Though the weather hasn’t exactly felt very Spring-like, we are only 11 days away from Spring Break and I just wanted to remind you that there will be no lessons from March 24-April 2.  We will resume April 3rd and begin a full scale preparation for our Spring Recital of Canadian Music!!  Enjoy the Spring Break.

APRIL MASTERCLASS
There will be another master class in April immediately following the Easter weekend!  Lot of fun is being planned for that.

More information will be sent out AFTER Spring Break.
SPRING RECITAL
Just another reminder that our Spring Recital is booked for Friday, May 5th at 6:30pm.  It will be the same location as the Christmas Recital:  14320 94 street (First Church of the Nazarene auditorium).  Students will be choosing pieces to play by Canadian composers as we prepare to celebrate Canada’s 150th!!
REGISTRATION AND SCHEDULE FOR 2017/18
I have been working out the schedule and planning for next year and will be sending out registration forms in the next week or so.  The deadline to register for September will be May 1st.  Tuition fees and book fee prices are currently being updated on the studio webpage (mmmusicstudio.com) and will be included with the registration form email as well as the class times and lesson times for next year.
I know that you have a lot of expenses in your life and I am sure you are always wisely re-evaluating the value of these expenses. So I wanted to send you two things that will illustrate what you are receiving for your piano lesson investment.

The first is a link to an infographic that beautifully depicts both the primary and secondary benefits of music lessons. I know you’ll enjoy seeing all the benefits that piano lessons give to  your child.

I also want to share with you a webpage that explains all that your tuition covers, which is much more than the 30, 45 or 60 minutes I get to spend with your children each week. I know it helps to know that your money is always being invested in your child’s music education even when they need to miss a lesson. So be sure to take a look at what all your tuition covers:
Thank you again for choosing to enroll your children in music lessons in my studio. It is absolutely a privilege and honor to be your teacher!!
Now, back to picking out music, marking theory pages and lesson plans,

 

February Piano News

Here we are almost one full week into February!  We made it through January and I have been quite impressed with both the practicing and the composing that has been going on!  Each and every student whether in the MYC program or private lessons has been creating their very own composition and it’s been delightful to see their enthusiasm as well as their astounding creativity.  We are going to wrap up our compositions over the next two weeks.
There’s not always a lot of news at this time of year but there are a couple of important upcoming dates to go over including another all studio master class session.
SUNRISE PRESCHOOL CLASS
First and foremost is an upcoming Sunrise class for preschoolers.  I will be starting a Sunrise music class for ages 2-4 this month on February 15th.  This class will run on Wednesdays from 11-11:45am until May.  If you know of anyone in that age group who would be interested, feel free to share.  I’ve created an event on the Facebook page that can be easily shared. There is still time to register! Sunrise kids will play a special part in our Spring Recital. 🙂
FAMILY DAY MASTER CLASS SESSION
We will be having another masterclass session immediately following the Family Day holiday weekend.  February 21-24 there will be NO regular lesson schedule, instead we will be having all studio master classes.  I’ll be sending out a sign up sheet similar the one I sent out in December shortly, this way you are able to see that you signed up….and also change times if needed all on your own.  The theme of this master class session will be “Creative Keys”  and focus on creativity through improvising and other fun AND it will be a chance for all the students to show each other their very creative compositions as those will be their solo pieces.  Keep your eye out for that sign up sheet!
SPRING RECITAL
I am still working on officially booking our Spring recital, but there is a very good chance is will be May 5th.  I will let you know as soon as it is official!  It will be in the same place as Christmas!
SPRING BREAK
It is still several weeks away, but there will be no lessons during March 24-April 2 for Spring Break.  The studio will be closed and I will be away.
Well, that is all for now!  Have a great day….and stay warm!!

Piano News November 2016 Edition

 

What a chilly November morning!!  I feel like a bit of a broken record when I say that October went by in a flash!  I expect the next several weeks will too!  Here are a few things to keep you updated:

DRESS UP WEEK

The boys of my Moonbeams 3 piano class requested that this week be “Dress Up Week” .  If you are not already sick of dressing up from a weekend of fun and yesterday (they assured me that they would definitely NOT be sick of dressing up!) then feel free to come to lessons in costume this week for a little bit of extra fun (Oct 31-Nov 4). 😊

PRACTICING

The students have been using the “What’s in my Musical Mind” posters to share with each other what they’ve been learning each week and how many days they’ve been practicing.  It’s a little bit of accountability and motivation rolled up in to one.  We will continue this both this week and next week before we roll out our new practice incentive after the Remembrance Day/Fall break.  Speaking of practicing, I came across this great article and just shared it on the Facebook page:

https://www.pianoinaflash.com/blog/child-doesnt-want-practice/

FALL BREAK

My children and several of my piano students have most or all of the week following Remembrance Day off, so there will be NO LESSONS November 11-18….instead, students will be encouraged to spend that extra time on the Christmas pieces they will be assigned both this week and next week in lesson….and I will be using that time to really start organizing and preparing for our big annual Christmas recital…which will be?? That’s right!

DECEMBER 16, 6:30pm ANNUAL CHRISTMAS RECITAL

Mark your calendars for our annual Christmas Recital on December 16th at 6:30pm in the main auditorium of First Church of the Nazarene, 14320 94 street.  Our theme is:  Christmas in Our Jammies….feel free to dress accordingly!  There will be photo ops AND photo props! 😉 We will begin preparations this week.  Expect fun ensembles, lovely piano solos and yummy treats!

Piano News September 2016 Edition

What a busy but wonderful week of music making we had this last week.  It was so wonderful to chat with returning students and hear about their summers and start some new music AND it was fabulous to meet the new faces and begin a musical journey with them.

Along with new pieces to practice, we talked about our goal of 5 DAYS of practice…not a new goal for many but sometimes a bit of an adjustment to make after a summer away from lessons or for a new student not yet used to playing the piano each day.  I have each students name on my chalkboard and each week they reach the goal of at least 5 days of practice they may add a colored chalk checkmark under their name and see how many they can collect between now and Thanksgiving.

With the year off to a galloping start, I just wanted to give you a few upcoming dates in this newsletter.   First is that we will have our first all studio master class the week following Thanksgiving, October 11-13.  Many of you are old hats at master class week, but some of you are new and I’ve had a chance to tell you a bit about it and look forward to sharing it with our new students.  More information including the exact master class times for you to choose from and RSVP for will come out at the end of the month or beginning of October.  If you’re new and would like to see what a master class looks like in my studio of enthusiastic musicians, check out this link and scroll on down.  I’ve not been organized enough to post them all but there are several there to take a little peek at:  https://mmmusicstudio.com/category/master-classes-2/page/2/

Another important date coming up this fall is the Christmas Recital (yep, I said Christmas!).  Our annual Christmas Recital is booked for Friday, December 16, 6:30-8pm at the First Church of the Nazarene 14329 94 street.  Already this week, a few of the students were asking about this and you can’t help but catch their excitement.  Each year I build sort of a mini-theme/title for our recital….usually inspired by or based around a special ensemble piece or a song…and we dress up in our Christmas finest and present it to you.  Sometimes the students request a theme.  Last year one of our classes were inspired to wear Christmas sweaters and that was a lot of fun.  Now, I have had a student ask again and again and again if we could have a pajama party recital and I’ve always said, “oh maybe one day we will try that”  So, imagine my surprise and delight when in looking for Christmas music and ensemble inspiration I stumbled across a little song called, “Christmas in Our Jammies”.  If that’s not a sign, I don’t know what is!😉 And so that will be this year’s Christmas Recital:  Christmas in Our Jammies.  Wearing jammies will not be mandatory but encouraged as I think it would be fun.  Families can get it on the action too and come in jammies!  What could be more fun than enjoying beautiful music and yummy refreshments in warm and cozy jammies on a chilly, December evening?

I keep a calendar for our studio posted on my webpage and am often updating it.  You can also subscribe to this webpage/blog and be notified of any updates or new postings. So far I have it updated all the way to Christmas and you can find it here:

https://mmmusicstudio.com/check-the-schedule/

Also we have a studio Facebook page, feel free to follow (“like”) it for updates, practice tips, inspiration and more and feel free to share on it anything you find inspiring!  https://www.facebook.com/mmmusicstudio/

So….just a quick hello from me and a few dates to mark on your calendar.  In the meantime, enjoy this beautiful fall weekend!

February Newsletter

Hello, Everyone!

Well, here we are!  We made it through January! And a number of us ended it off with a night at the Opera on Thursday night!  What an experience that was!  If you missed it, Edmonton Opera has just announced next season’s line up and among it is Rossini’s La Cenerentala (Cinderella!!) and Puccini’s Turandot (a story of the kind -hearted Calaf who risks his life to melt the icy heart of Princess Turandot).  Hopefully one of them will have an evening education dress rehearsal again!
http://www.edmontonopera.com/season/2016-17

As we head into February, just a few things to bring to your attention:

1. CAUGHT PRACTICING!  We have 7 students up on our caught practicing wall so far!  Keep emailing those awesome pictures!

2. FEBRUARY MASTER CLASS:  The week following Family Day (February 16-18), there will once again be no regular lessons due to the holiday Monday.  Instead we will once again have special themed Master Classes.  February’s theme will be a Piano Pajama Party…because what could be better than wear your pajamas during the cold winter season! 😉  It will also lead perfectly into our brand new practice challenge that will be kicked off that week and run until Spring Break (How?  You’ll see!).  I will be sending out a Master Class sign up sheet separately in the next day or so!  As a heads up the Tuesday class will be 6pm, the Wednesday class at 5 and the Thursday class is TBD but likely 4:30 or 5.

3. SPRING BREAK:  February is a short month and I am sure Spring Break will be here before we know it.  The calendar on my website has been updated for you to check out but, in the meantime, I am letting you know that we will be having a 2 week Spring Break this year from March 21-April 3.  I have been invited on my daughter’s grade 11 class trip to Mandeville, Jamaica as a chaperone and have also been asked to run a music camp and piano clinic at the orphanage and church respectively while we are there.  In addition, we will be building some much needed extra room onto their buildings, teaching swimming lessons and doing soccer camps with the kids!  I’m looking forward to an exciting, rewarding and thoroughly exhausting time with the 14 teenagers and three other chaperones!  We will leave March 20th and return April 2.  Regular lessons will resume on April 4th.

4. RCM EXAMS:  For those of you doing theory or piano exams this May and June, the deadline to register is March 1st. I will be sending you more information including which centre to register for very soon!

5. SPRING RECITAL: Is officially MAY 6th!  Mark your calendars!!!

Happy New Year-January Newsletter 2016

Hello Everyone and Happy New Year!

After a wonderfully refreshing, albeit quickly passing, holiday, it is absolutely delightful to look forward to having your children back in my studio again starting this Monday, January 4th!

I wanted to take the time before we launch into the new year to thank each and every one of you for your efforts this past fall, culminating with our fantastic Christmas concert. Being a “piano parent” is a big commitment, and I feel so fortunate to be connected with families who see the immense value of music. Learning to play piano can be a life-changing experience and I’m humbled that you have chosen me to be a part of this exciting gift that you continue to give your children.

I’ve spent some of my holiday time planning an exciting second term of lessons and I thought I’d give you a “sneak peek” of just some of what’s to come! This term your children can look forward to:

  • Exciting and fun practice incentives, including a Caught Practicing Event
  • Fun new piano theory games.
  • A composing unit with a “Mail-A-Motive” composing activity.
  • A field trip to Edmonton Opera to see Carmen (those of you who signed up for this in November: watch for an email regarding ticket payment coming on Monday!)
  • A super-fun master class week coming up in February with a PJ party theme!
  • Our Spring Recital coming up in early May, chock full of solos, ensembles and more fun!

I also wanted to reach out to you to let you know that I very much understand the life of a piano parent. Please know that, while I spend most of my time motivating and assisting your children, I’m also here to support you as well! Working as a parent/child/teacher triangle is the optimal way to ensure your children’s success and enjoyment.

You are always welcome to ask for advice on making home practice work, for updates on your children’s progress or for any other musical assistance you may need.

We’re kicking off the “New Year” with a practice event designed to get your children excited and motivated right off the bat. Please watch for information coming home next week. I’m always so appreciative of your assistance and enthusiastic participation in these fun events!

Seeing your children grow, improve and learn to love music is truly the most rewarding part of my job. This past term I saw confidence, progress, creativity, pride, feelings of success and major accomplishments on a weekly basis. These are powerful memories your children are making, and these are invaluable skills that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives. What a gift to your children… what a gift to yourselves to experience … and what a gift for me to be a part of!

See you in the studio!