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Below are answers to commonly asked questions. See our Student/Parent Handbook. Still have questions after reading our FAQ'S and Handbook? Contact us.

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Technology Questions

Technology is paramount in creating an exceptional online learning experience for music studies. You will need a computer or mobile device with a microphone, camera, and stable Internet connection.

The following recommendations will allow for the most successful virtual lesson:
Additional options for online equipment include:

Voice Questions

The voice is an instrument. Vocal cords are delicate membranes that can damage easily. Allowing for the individual growth and development of the child’s vocal cords and larynx, most students may begin voice lessons about age 9. Children beginning their vocal journey start with note reading, pitch recognition and matching, breathing techniques, and the formation of the mouth, jaw, and other musculature.

Students younger than age 9 benefit from beginning music lessons in either piano or violin. Both of these instruments develop necessary skills in note reading, ear training, and pitch recognition. Piano is an especially helpful bridge to studying voice and other instruments as it teaches the reading of both the treble and bass clefs. Acquainting children with many musical styles, along with the study of an instrument, provides an excellent foundation for future vocal studies.

Yes. The voice is a muscle in the body which requires exercise through daily warm-ups and techniques learned in your lessons.

Vocal study can be helpful in many different ways, building self-confidence not only in singing and performing, but also in public speaking and self-expression!

String Questions

We recommend that your child be a confident reader with an attention span of 30 minutes before beginning traditional string lessons.

  • Violin and viola come in a variety of sizes so that students as young as 7 can begin lessons.
  • Double basses also come in smaller sizes, however, the double bass is a heavy instrument with thick strings. Optimally, it is best to begin double bass studies when students are in middle school and have finger strength and physical height. We recommend a child to be at least in middle school to take double bass lessons.

All stringed instruments come in various sizes.

  • Violins are measured in fractions (1/16, ⅛, ¼, ½, ¾, and 4/4) and are sized specifically to the student’s arm length. In order to be measured properly, it is recommended to be sized by a professional music teacher or reputable music store.
  • Violas are measured in inches (12”, 13”, 14”, 15”, etc…) and eventually become larger than violins.
  • Cellos are also measured in fractions (¼. ½, ¾, 4/4) and are sized specifically to various aspects of the body. In order to be measured properly, it is recommended to be sized by a professional music teacher or reputable music store.

Private instruction is much more in depth than what a teacher can give a student in a classroom setting and it is tailored to the specific needs of the student. Your teacher at school will teach your child all of the basics of playing. But, as you can imagine, these classes are full. Teachers cannot provide one-on-one instruction time with every student. Most students have their own unique physical tendencies that require one on one time. As the student continues through middle and high school, the students have not had their technical issues addressed and playing more difficult music becomes a huge undertaking. Studying privately, will ensure that the student thoroughly learns the instrument and forms correct playing posture, and habits that will carry them successfully forward.

Private instruction is much more likely to lead to a long and positive experience. A private teacher deepens the student’s understanding and mastery of technique and teaches them how to practice effectively in order to improve as a player. All of this leads to a more satisfying musical experience. A student can do much more by having private lessons. The can handle their orchestra parts with much less trouble, play solo pieces, perform in higher level ensembles in their school, play in youth orchestras, apply for scholarships in college to play in Orchestra (even if the student is not a music major), and play into adulthood in various community orchestras, religious settings, and more. Music compliments your life and makes it better.

Guitar Questions

Generally speaking, a student should be 9 years old to begin guitar lessons. For younger children who are interested in lessons, there are 2 alternative options that are incredibly successful.

  1. Ukulele. It is similar to the guitar, however the strings on a Ukulele are made of nylon and are easier on the student’s fingers.
  2. Loog ™ Guitar. A Loog guitar is a special guitar built for learners ages 3+. They are real guitars that have the first 3 strings of a regular guitar. Visit their website for more information.

There are two basic guitars to choose from:

  • A classical, nylon stringed guitar is for playing true classical music. It also utilizes mostly finger picking styles. The classical guitar has a very thick neck and all nylon strings which lends itself to classical and flamenco studies.
  • An acoustic guitar is the most popular of the two guitars as you can play anywhere and any style with it. The acoustic guitar has a combination of steel and nylon strings, and the neck is not as thick, allowing the flexibility to study and play a variety of musical genres. It should be sized to fit the student by a professional music teacher or reputable music store.

Brass Questions

Most students will do well at the age where they would be able to lift a heavier instrument. That’s usually around 11 or 12 years old, but not too much before. Students are welcome to begin at an earlier age, however, the progress could be slower until they develop their strength and breath support.

Many students between the ages of 10 and 14 get braces. While it’s not impossible to play a brass instrument, braces make it slightly more difficult. In our experience, a student’s embouchure or mouth position will make small adjustments to accommodate braces. This may include using dental wax on the inside of their mouths to keep traditional braces from digging into their gums, or having invisible braces that go on the inside of the teeth.

Woodwind Questions

Students should be at least 9 years old (or in the fourth grade) to start traditional woodwind lessons.

Percussion Questions

Traditionally, students who are 9 or 10 and have the ability to focus on a task for 30 minutes are ready to begin traditional percussion lessons. Students younger than 9 or 10 would be interviewed for musical study and accepted on a case by case basis.

Piano Questions

We recommend that your child be a confident reader with an attention span of 30 minutes before beginning traditional private piano lessons. For online instruction, generally ages seven or older is best. Parent involvement in the beginning is crucial in order to set your new musician up for success.

It is essential to have an acoustic piano accessible for practicing on a daily basis. While an acoustic piano is best, this may not be a possibility for some. Digital keyboards with 88 weighted keys that imitate the touch of an acoustic piano are a reasonable alternative for beginners. There are many places where you can rent or buy either an acoustic piano or a weighted digital keyboard.

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