About

Instructor Information

lesliI love to teach. Teaching is not a side job or stepping stone to another performance related career. I am eager to share my passion for music by embracing musicianship and musicality in private students of all ages.

  • Masters in Music Teaching from Northern Arizona University.
  • Bachelor of Arts with an emphasis in Piano Performance from Arizona State University.
  • Dedicated to enthusiastic and dynamic teaching as a means of creating and nurturing a lifelong love of music through piano.
  • Teaching privately since 1997.
  • Experienced in use of the Internet and educational software.

 

Private Instruction Philosophy

My philosophy as a teacher is to nurture the art of music by providing a well-rounded curriculum encompassing a broad range of musicianship skills. I believe that a high level of musicality is achieved by focusing on the process. This process-oriented approach helps the student to discover personal rewards in musical study, find enjoyment in music-making, feel confident of his/her ability to learn and to feel that the effort invested into piano studies is a worthwhile endeavor. The study of piano is a rewarding experience and is important for developing a student’s gifts/talents as a vital part of investing in their future.

My Teaching Style and Method

While this studio offers several performance opportunities, I teach with the intent that students will enjoy playing throughout their lifetime. Weekly piano lessons incorporate the learning of new material, sight-reading, musical statement and piano technique. Beginning to Intermediate students use the acclaimed Faber & Faber Piano Adventure series. Late-Intermediate to Advanced students are individually assessed in theory and technical skills. From this assessment, each student is provided with repertoire selected to build on their strengths and challenge their weaknesses. Repertoire ranges from the Baroque to Contemporary styles and is chosen by both the student and instructor.

Accompanying Philosophy

Working as a team with a choral/ensemble director is one of the most rewarding positions that I have held. Accompanying is a passion and something that I love to do. It’s important that an accompanist be prompt, reliable, prepared, and willing to work to accomplish the musical direction that a conductor is working towards.

Key Qualifications

  • Pianist with twenty one years of private teaching experience and twenty three years of accompanying experience from church services, choral accompanying to jazz ensembles.
  • Able to teach beginning to advanced theory
  • Able to play all styles and genres.
  • Teach all styles of music from baroque to jazz.
  • Specialize in sight-reading of all musical styles.
  • 2, 3, or 4-part score reading.
  • Able to lead and rehearse sectionals.
  • Ability to work and engage students of all ages.
  • Utilized theory and computer-integrated studies for many years.
  • Desire to accompany and teach professionally.
  • Plan and instruct each subject area (theory, sight-reading, rhythm…) using a wide variety of teaching aids.
  • Motivational private lessons that engage students in active learning.

Accompanying & Studio History

  • 14 students participated in the 2016 PMTA Fall Festival. Nine students were Gold Medal Winners!
  • Accompanist for Air Academy High School final concert 2016-2017
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Choral Readings, Summer 2016
  • Eight students participated in the World Premier of Emily Bear’s 24-piano composition at the Mesa Arts Center 2016 Annual Gala
  • 14 students participated in the 2015 PMTA Fall Festival. Nine students were Gold Medal Winners!
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Choral Readings, Summer 2015
  • 19 students participated in the 2014 PMTA Fall Festival. Seven students were Gold Medal Winners!
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Choral Readings, Summer 2014
  • 13 students in the 2013 Arizona Study Program received a Superior with Honors
  • 18 students participated in the 2013 PMTA Fall Festival. Eight students were Gold Medal Winners!
  • Ten students in the 2013 Arizona Study Program received a Superior with Honors
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Choral Readings, Summer 2013
  • Studio participated in the Celebration of Music Competition with students who placed – 2013
  • Studio participated in the Fall Festival with students who placed – 2012
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Choral Readings, Summer 2012
  • Studio participated in the Celebration of Music Competition with students who placed – 2012
  • Six students in the Arizona Study Program received Superior with Honors, one received an Excellent – 2012
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Choral Readings, Summer 2011
  • Four students in the Arizona Study Program all received Superior with Honors for their evaluations – 2011
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Choral Readings, Summer 2010
  • Accompanist for Choral Director Paula Baack’s Summer 2010 Studio Recital
  • Accompanist for Choral Director Paula Baack’s Summer 2009 Studio Recital
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Choral Readings, Summer 2009
  • Accompanist for Pinnacle High School Choral Concert Fall 2008
  • Arizona State University Vocal & Musical Theater Freelance Accompanist
  • Accompanist for Choral Director Paula Baack’s Summer 2008 Studio Recital
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Choral Readings, Summer 2008
  • Accompanist for Pinnacle High School, Fall 2004 to 2008
  • Accompanist for Regional & Solo and Ensemble Auditions, Spring 2008
  • Accompanist for clinic & workshop directed under Paula Baack at Desert Sands Elementary School, Fall 2007
  • Attended the Music Theory/AP Conference in Las Vegas, Summer 2007
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Choral Readings under Dr. Edmund Hughes, Summer 2007
  • Accompanist for Pinnacle High School Hawaii Tour Spring 2007
  • Accompanist for Pinnacle High at Northern Arizona University Spring 2007
  • Accompanist for ChoDA Men’s/Women’s Choral Festival 2006
  • Accompanist for Scottsdale Community College, Fall 1998 through 2006
  • Accompanist for two sections of Class Voice, Fall 1998 through 2006
  • Accompanist for Ja’zaz Jazz Choir, Fall 1998 through 2006
  • Accompanist for A cappella Choir, 2001-2003
  • Accompanist for Community Choir/Monday Night Jazz, Fall 1999 through 2006
  • Accompanist for La Petite Ja`Zaz, Spring 2001 through 2006
  • Accompanist for Scottsdale Master Chorale, Fall 2005 through 2006
  • Accompanist for The Music Store’s Readings under Dr. Edmund Hughes, Summer 2005 & 2006
  • Accompanist for Coronado High School, Fall 2004 to 2006
  • Accompanist for Cocopah Middle School, Fall 2003 to 2006
  • National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) accompanist, 2004 to present
  • Accompanying for Arizona State University auditions, Spring 2006
  • Solo & Ensemble & Regionals accompanist, Spring 2005 to present
  • Accompanist for students of Linda Spevacek, Judy Durocher, and Beth Livingston-Hakes at the Young Artist Competition at Herberger, Spring 2005
  • Hartnell College Workshops in Carmel, CA. Spring 2003, Spring 2005, Spring 2006
  • Accompanist for Scottsdale Community College Vocal Jazz Conservatory, Summer 2005
  • Accompanist for Desert Foothills Lutheran Church, 1998-1999
  • Accompanist for First Southern Baptist Church in Scottsdale, 1999
  • Accompanist for Desert Foothills Performing Arts Camps, 1998-1999
  • Accompanist for orchestra at Arizona School of Fine Arts, Spring and Fall 1998
  • Accompanist for Horizon High School, Fall 1996-1997
  • Owner of Scottsdale Piano Academy private piano studio, 1999 to present
  • Themed Spring Literature Recital
  • Honors Recital in the fall
  • Winter Solo Recital
  • Winter Duet & Ensemble Recital
  • Students performing memorized solo pieces
  • More advanced students and parents accompanying beginning to intermediate students
  • Students of all levels performing duets
  • Theory and sight-reading at each lesson
  • Computer-aided theory and private instruction
  • Private piano instructor for Scottsdale Community College, Fall 2003-2004
  • Instructor at Classic Touch Music Academy, 1997-1999