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Resources

Annual Practice Sheet

 

Download Stephen's annual practice sticker chart for your child to keep track of their practices. 

Set goals for the number of times they practice, you sign each day they practice, and when they come in for their music lesson, Stephen will give them a sticker for every week that they met their goals!

Download here!

Music Books

 

It can be confusing to find the right books for a student, it greatly depends on where you are as a student.

 

For beginner students:

If you are intermediate to advanced, Stephen recommends checking out the RCM books in your instrument of choice, followed by finding popular music books with mainstream music that is fun to play.

Royal Conservatory of Music

 

Stephen has completed many certifications in the RCM program and is able to teach students the following:

  • Guitar Levels 1 - 8

  • Piano Levels 1 - 4

  • All Music Theory Levels: Rudiments, Harmony & History

Check out this link below to learn more about the benefits of completing the RCM certification program, and see if its a match for you or your child.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

How old do you have to be start music lessons?

Typically, children start private music lessons between the ages of 5-9 depending on the instrument. The most common choices for private lessons are piano/keyboard, guitar. The guitar offers the convenience of smaller scale instruments for younger beginners. Students wishing to learn to play wind instruments such as trumpet, trombone and saxophone generally start after age 10 due to the physical requirements some of these instruments pose.

Do students need to own an instrument to take lessons?

Yes, without having an instrument a student will not be able to practice, grow and progress in what they learn each week. Some instruments are more affordable than others, however there are great rental programs out there.

How long does it take to learn to play an instrument?

Growth in learning a new instrument is dependent on regular practice. Stephen highly recommends setting goals and utilizing the Practice Sticker chart to keep track. New students with regular practice should see growth quickly, however its important to understand that the study of music is a long-term process.

How does a student prepare for the Royal Conservatory Exams?

Stephen can teach and prepare your child for the Royal Conservatory Exams. Currently Stephen can teach the following levels:

  • Classical Guitar Levels 1 – 8

  • Piano Levels 1 – 4

  • Music Theory all Levels: Rudiments, Harmony & History
     

I'm interested in Piano Lessons, can I use a Keyboard instead?

Traditional acoustic pianos and weighted action digital pianos are the preferred instruments of choice for long term study of the piano. There are a range of options from $1,000 digital pianos from Costco to $5,000 brand new acoustic pianos. The reason Stephen recommends an acoustic/digital piano is for the real-life experience it gives; a keyboard isn’t weighted and thus when performing a student can be thrown off and play completely different.  This can be a stressful experience for a student that can be avoided.

However, understanding the financial and space considerations around purchasing a piano, a keyboard could be utilized short term for beginner students only. If the student wishes to pursue RCM certifications, then upgrading as soon as possible would be key to their successful performances in the examinations.

 

What is the best instrument to learn on?

The one you or your child is excited about. Sometimes Stephen will teach a student both Guitar and Piano so they can get a feel for the differences in sound, technique and style of music. Being interested in the instrument is a key motivator to ensuring they practice in between lessons

Whats the best type of Guitar to learn on?

Most of the technique is the same across the different styles of Guitar. First determine the style of music you would like to play, and then match the instrument. Enjoying the music you play is key to growth and progress as a student. If you are interested in Rock & Pop music an Electric guitar will suit you, however be aware that you will also need an amp. If you are interested in country and acoustic music, an acoustic guitar is the best selection. If you enjoy classical, Spanish or flamenco music then a classical guitar is the right option.

 

What are the rates for lessons?

$26 for half hour, $50 for 1 hour.

Can I attend my child's lesson?

Yes you can, Stephen’s music studio is small, however there is a comfortable chair for you to sit and observe.

What if I am sick or my child is sick?

Stephen understands that life happens, he will honor emergency’s that come up with re-booking the lesson as soon as possible.

How do I pay for lessons?

Stephen accepts money via PayPal, cash or cheque. Payment is for one month of lessons and is on the first lesson of the month. While we hope you will sign up for a year, lessons renewals are monthly, so you can cancel at anytime.

 

Any lessons already paid for are non-refundable, Stephen will work with you to schedule in any remaining lessons you may have.

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