Why is music study important?

Even for students who do not plan to pursue music as a career, music study is extremely beneficial. Time and time again, music study has been scientifically proven to improve concentration and enhance intelligence. See, for example, this article from Psychology Today:

Music study is also an excellent outlet for students to learn to gain creativity and confidence, practice discipline, express themselves, and learn to appreciate culture.

Do you offer 30 or a 45 minute lessons?

Generally, I do not offer 30 minute lessons, simply because it is usually too short of a time period to be optimally productive. Exceptions may be made on a case by case basis. I do offer 45 minute lessons for younger beginners.

Do you teach beginner adults?

I generally do not teach adult beginners, although many teachers do this and some even specialize in this. While I would absolutely say it is never too late to start music lessons, my expertise lies more in training all levels of young pre-college age students or teaching advanced young adults who are already pursuing a music career. On occasion, I teach adult amateurs who already have significant musical experience.

What kind of piano does my child need to practice on at home?

I would strongly recommend an acoustic upright or grand piano. I do not recommend keyboards or digital pianos, even for beginners. The digital/hybrid Yamaha Avant Grands are also acceptable for home practice. There are many ways to get affordable acoustic pianos, and pianos can even be rented by the month. Talk to Dr. Gustafson if there are any specific questions related to obtaining appropriate instruments.

How much practice is expected weekly?

A good rule of thumb Is that daily practice should be at least as long as the weekly lesson. Young beginners may not have the concentration needed to focus for that long, but can work up to it as they gain experience.

Should parents sit with their kids during daily practice?

This completely depends on the age and personality of the student, as well as the family situation. Each case is different, and can be discussed with Dr. Gustafson on a case by case basis.

What are your tuition rates?

Rates are currently $120 per hour lesson, $90 per 45-minute lesson. If 30-minute lessons are offered in a special case, the rate is $70 per lesson. There is also a sibling discount of 10%.

Why are your rates higher than other local piano teachers?

I base my rates on my over 20 years of teaching experience and my educational credentials, including the fact that I have a doctorate. I do try to keep my rates fair and stable. The recent tuition increase was the first in seven years!