Hidden beneath the guise of games and fun activities, hearty doses of musical education lurk within each piano lesson Donna McGlasson teaches. At her studio, Tickle the Ivories, she guides students aged 5 and older through a comprehensive understanding of traditional piano theory, including note reading and proper technique. For adults, she’s also glad to build a course of instruction around learning to play by ear. A carefully selected syllabus of handouts, books, and other learning materials enhances her instruction and help students continue learning on their own after heading home or sneaking on stage at an Elton John concert. In addition to her weekly lessons, McGlasson organizes a recital to showcase the progress of her protégés.
Over the past two decades, Melody Hues has worn many educational hats, hosting piano, violin, band, and choir lessons and teaching in both Spanish and English at the elementary, junior high, and high school levels. At Melody Hues Studios, she and her staff help pass creative and communication skills along to a new generation with piano, violin, and voice lessons for children and Spanish lessons for students of all ages. Kids learn to read musical notation and play songs by ear using provided keyboards in piano lessons. During voice classes, students develop breath control and confidence that help improve tone, whether they're singing in front of a crowd or directly into a big bowl of pudding.
An authorized Yamaha Music School, Valley Music Center's instructors illuminate students young and old—from beginners to highly advanced players. Drawing upon methods developed in Japan more than 50 years ago, Valley Music Center's teachers employ a curriculum that combines ear training with singing, playing, reading, and creating music. With this multifaceted approach to music, they strive to teach students of all ages not only how to play piano, guitar, flute, clarinet, or French horn but also how to cultivate a genuine love for what they’re playing. In addition to offering private lessons, they helm group lessons where students can learn from their peers. Students then have the opportunity to showcase their newfound skills during friendly recitals or settle disputes using the age-old method of pianos at dawn.
The Academy of Classical Music & Fine Arts takes a holistic approach to its music instruction, giving musically inclined citizens the harmonious keys to a musical mind and body. Founded by gifted siblings Gianeh and Ovanes Arakelyan, both USC graduates and former pupils of world-renowned pianist Daniel Pollack, the academy offers students precise instructions on specific necessities including posture, listening techniques, and the finger dexterity utilized by “Stairway to Heaven”–playing guitar-shop customers the world over.
Since 1998, The Voice Shop has paired students with seasoned music instructors for one-on-one lessons held in the center of Fresno's historic Tower District. Those instructors draw from a wide range of experience: some have recorded music for feature films and video games, and others sing alongside classical symphony orchestras. The school tailors lesson plans to fit each student's interests and will even provide recording services or help organize performances.