After finishing her classical education in Moscow, piano player Elena Orduyan switched from student to teacher. For more than a decade, she’s taught the ivory-tickling arts to youths and adults alike, sending students off to institutions like Juilliard with skills she helped them hone. She tailors each lesson to her individual students, creating customized lesson books for every player and curating her own lesson materials by mixing and matching texts from a variety of publishers and schools of thought. Her curricula extend past key-tapping: beginners also pick up the basics of music theory, and intermediate-level musicians learn to use music software. Orduyan even helps young kids along with color-coded markers and stickers. Never content to rest on her musical laurels, she also furthers her own education by attending annual music-teaching conferences and events.
Designed and developed by vocal coach and singer/songwriter Ruth Gerson, the Singingbelt trains singers and public speakers to support their voices with their diaphragms. The belt provides feedback on the position of the diaphragm, which signals to the wearer any time they cease supporting their breath. The belt can help singers develop power, tone, pitch, and endurance.
Mastering an instrument takes dedication, practice, and time, although it also helps to receive some professional guidance along the way. At Exploring Music, the instructors help budding musicians improve by providing personalized direction based on each individual's skill level and musical aspirations. Private and group lessons meet in practice studios that have been insulated and reinforced for sound reduction, helping students to fully concentrate on mastering their instrument of choice, be it the guitar, the violin, the piano, the saxophone, or the five-disc CD changer.
Mexico City native Ricardo Téllez began dancing when he was 12, shimmying his way through styles such as cumbia and guaracha. In 1995, he packed up his dancing shoes and moved to the Bay area, accelerating his salsa study not only by studying under Gabriel Romero, but also by trying out his footwork in clubs. Armed with a passion for dance, Ricardo founded RicaSalsa Dance Company in 1999 to share his love of the art. Today, he and dance partner Tianne Frias—with whom he placed third in the World Latin Dance Cup—teach private lessons and group classes that impart new and advanced dancers with the steps, partnership skills, and medallions filled with glowworms needed to light up the floor. By focusing on social dance skills and the ability to follow the rhythm, they help their students adapt easily to different songs and settings.
Each of the guitar coaches at American Guitar Academy are certified in the school's signature teaching method. Developed over 25 years, this house-honed instruction technique incorporates scientific research to help fingers learn to shred frets up to eight times faster than alternative methods. During private half-hour lessons, instructors guide budding rock stars aged 4 years and up through the basics of strumming chords and seamlessly stitching together riffs. These comprehensive lessons on classical, electric, or acoustic guitars are offered once a week with a live instructor or online and guarantee that students will be playing their favorite music within six months of training. Students may begin lessons without owning a guitar, but are encouraged to gain access to one quickly for mastering scales and the ability to solo with their teeth.