Friday, June 28, 2013

Are You Good Enough to Teach Music?


There are many, many different ways to teach.
Doing something doesn’t mean you can teach it, and vice versa.
Playing flawlessly doesn’t mean you’re an amazing teacher.

Teaching is science — just like medicine. A good teacher possess a body of expert knowledge about how the mind works, how motivation works, how to design effective work and how to adjust learning. Also knows professional “best practice” and how to use it fluently and flexibly.

But teaching is an art itself – it takes practice. A PhD Math Professor must be really good in math. But it doesn't mean that he's a good at teaching. He could speak alien and makes everything complicated that it needed to be. It's not about what he said, but how he explain things. Kids aren’t widgets, teachers aren’t robots and everybody loses when we treat them that way.

Not every college graduate is cut out to teach, regardless of his or her innate intelligence, G.P.A. or previous career success. Only those with specific talents and training become gifted teachers who, working with a talented mentor teacher and a variety of tools and learned techniques, can motivate students to want to learn. 

"Teaching is both an art and a science"

Thursday, June 20, 2013

"MUSIC SAVED MY LIFE!" - Alice Herz Sommer


The inspirational story.... 
Alice Herz Sommer is a 109-yr old pianist (oldest living pianist) 
and oldest living Holocaust survivor! 
Music saved her life!

Alice Herz-Sommer also known as Alice Sommer, (born 26 November 1903) is a Jewish pianist and music teacher from Bohemia, and a survivor of the Theresienstadt concentration camp. Herz-Sommer has lived in North London, United Kingdom since 1986, and is the world’s oldest known Holocaust survivor. 

At age 108, Holocaust survivor Alice Herz Sommer still practices piano for three hours every day. At age 104, she had a book written about her life: "A Garden Of Eden In Hell." 

Wednesday, June 19, 2013



I want you to take a second and think about something you are really good at 
- a skill you've practiced and perfected since you were 4. 
Actually, how many of us even remember what we did when we were 4? 

I can't remember a thing about how I was taught when I first started lessons, including who my teacher was; I only remember the rewards I got from my mom AFTER piano performances. That's why parent's support and involvement are really important to child's development in piano lessons.

While there certainly are concert pianists who are excellent teachers, they are usually not a good fit for most students. Here I've gathered some reasons from my own experience studying under teachers with an active performance schedule, and parents of students who have studied with concert pianists before transferring to me.

1. A great performer doesn't equal a great teacher. 
 The ability to play piano doesn't equal the ability to teach. These are some of the most important realizations I made during my graduate studies. I used to think my performance degree from a music conservatory and ability to relate to kids and be personable made me a good piano teacher. While these characteristics did give me an advantage, they are poor substitutes for actual knowledge in how to properly teach piano. This realization I made about myself now makes me flinch a little whenever I hear of non-pianist colleagues teaching piano "on the side".

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Music as a Language by Victor Wooten

Why Music Should Be Taught Less Like Algebra and More Like a Language?
by Victor Wooten

"Music is a powerful communication tool.
It causes us to laugh, cry, think and question."

For bassist and five-time Grammy winner, Victor Wooten, music is a language, just like English. Music should be taught the same way as any other language, and performing it should feel as natural as speaking, he said. Victor Wooten, asks us to approach music the same way we learn verbal language--by embracing mistakes and playing as often as possible.

Friday, June 14, 2013

LEARNING GUITAR vs PIANO: "Which one is easier to play?"

"Which one is easier to play?"

There is an entirely different mental concept behind the guitar as compared to the piano. If you're a trained classical pianist and want to learn how to play guitar, here's some comparisons and some thoughts about it.

The piano is simultaneously easier AND harder to play than the guitar. 

 1) Playing two things at the same time
You play one chord or melody with the left hand, while doing another with the right hand. Play 10 notes at a time instead of 6. That is hard! 

2) High-fidelity instrument which covers so much musical spectrum 
Pianist is responsible for providing much more of the overall sound, most of the time.

3) Complex arrangements
A lot of black notes on paper to read. A pianist is expected to play it all, even though it might involve different melodies and different rhythms on each hand at the same time.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Fantastic Suite "WETLAND" for Guitar and Piano

for Guitar and Piano
Composed by: Jun-ichi Nihashi

A good repertoire for guitar and piano is rare to find. 
This could be an alternative for a great repertoire, for an advanced guitarist and pianist. 
I made the mp3 on the soundcloud myself. Hope you enjoy it!

About the Fantastic Suite "WETLAND" for Guitar and Piano
This unique ensemble of the piano and guitar aspires to discover new possibilities for its medium. The theme is about fantasy and dream, that reflects the nature of wetland from the dawn until the evening with the stars. 

"S.O.S! Anak Saya Mogok Latihan!" - Artikel Staccato Juni 2013

Oleh: Jelia Megawati Heru
Artikel Staccato Juni 2013

Belajar memainkan alat musik tidaklah mudah. Tujuh (7) dari setiap delapan (8) anak yang duduk di kelas satu menyerah ketika dihadapkan pada ujian piano ABRSM dan memutuskan untuk berhenti sebelum kelas tujuh. Alasan utama para siswa ini menyerah adalah mereka tidak suka berlatih dan mereka belajar bermain piano hanya karena paksaan dari orang tua nya saja.

Umumnya di Asia, beberapa orang tua menyikapi sikap malas latihan anaknya dengan agresif, seperti: memaksa, omelan, kritik destruktif, membandingkan, ancaman, bahkan kekerasan fisik – yang cenderung berakhir dengan uraian air mata. Akibatnya beberapa anak menjadi mogok latihan, bahkan tidak jarang mogok makan, dan mogok sekolah. Terkadang kita hanya mengambil jalan pintas, tanpa mempertimbangkan efek sampingnya di kemudian hari. Sikap yang negatif terhadap anak akan menumbuhkan kebencian terhadap musik, tidak menghargai orang tuanya sendiri, hingga tidak adanya kepercayaan diri lagi. Karena anak tidak diperlakukan sebagaimana mestinya sebagai seorang individu.