Instructor Dave Curtis understands why many people shy away from music lessons. Stereotypically, music lessons can be stiff, demanding, and no fun at all, as stringent teachers suck a player's passion out with rote repetition. Dave's philosophy is to let students play music their own way, because he believes music should never stop being joyful. During 30- and 60-minute lessons, Dave eschews standard chord-gorging and endless rounds of "Mary Had a Little Lamb" for a sharpened focus on music theory—the not-so-secret language that accomplished musicians speak. In one-on-one lessons, Dave inspires students to play the songs that they want to play as they learn to transpose, write, and arrange their own songs.
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.
Since 1964, Guitar Center has paired musicians with guitars, keyboards, drums, Pro Audio gear, and necessary accessories, including DJ and recording equipment to capture newly made melodies. An iPad music-stand adaptor ($39.99) connects an iPad to a music stand, allowing musicians to access online programs and music apps on-stage, or to publicly dedicate a song to their online Scrabble partner. A clip-on tuner ($29.99) keeps notes pitch-perfect, and Guitar Center’s array of sheet music produces a wider variety of sounds than singing from a thesaurus, with options that include the C-surfing The Real Blues Book ($31.49). Stitch tighter harmonies by threading notes onto Slinky guitar strings ($3.79), or use the value of today's Groupon toward a larger purchase, such as the Epiphone Les Paul Special II guitar ($169–$179.99). Guitar Center rounds out its collection of gear with Pro Audio and DJ equipment, keyboards, and drums, allowing every band member or solo cymbal player to stock up on their chosen form of expression.
Anthem Music Lessons is the brainchild of two passionate rockers: Phil Ernst, a Musicians Institute of Technology grad and professional guitarist, and his prot?g?, Jared Canchola. Along with a staff of other touring and professional musicians, they lead lessons for students of all abilities in a variety of instruments, including guitar, bass, voice, piano, drums, strings, brass, and music theory. They tailor each lesson to the individual?s skill level, emphasizing proper musicianship and music creation. For more advanced students, they conduct band programs that involve weekly rehearsals with an instructor and provided music charts.
Up On Stage Productions develops the stars of tomorrow with coaching from a team of industry professionals, many of who have appeared on Broadway and in international touring productions. To sharpen the techniques of young performers, the company's dance and theatrical programs emphasize stage fundamentals, from movement and voice control to character development and improvisation. All programs at Up On Stage come stocked with the necessities, including set design, costumes, and instructions for breaking a leg without actually breaking a leg.
A piano player since age 5, Julie Gunvalson has been sharing her skills with others through private lessons since 2001. At Piano By Julie, she and co-instructor Nick Petrillo lead lessons in piano, guitar, and voice for students of all ages. They also guide students through music-theory study and help them prepare for performances, including two recitals per year through her studio.