Words of Wisdom

Wednesday’s Words of Wisdom

“Bach gave us God’s word, Mozart gave us God’s laughter, Beethoven gave us God’s fire. God gave us music that we might pray without words.”

— quote from a German opera house

Every Wednesday brings Words of Wisdom here at the Color in my Piano blog in the form of a musical quote or joke, intended to bring inspiration or humor to the middle of your week. Have suggestions? Send an email off to admin[at]colorinmypiano.com.

Announcements, Performances

Recital Roses and an Update on Life

Today I wanted to share a photo from my university’s Community Music School recital a few weeks ago!  This is one of my wonderful students who I unfortunately must leave behind now that we are moving.  :(  I will miss all my students!

My fellow teachers and I bought roses to give out to all the students who performed that evening.  It was so fun to watch the students faces as they each received their rose and gave it a big sniff.  They felt like real performers!

In other news, my husband and I finally have living arrangements in Ohio!  We will be renting a cute little three-bedroom house.  It will be so exciting to set up my piano studio……but first we have to deal with the great fun of packing and moving.  We will be staying with family for a few weeks until the landlords finish a few last-minute projects inside the house.  By the middle of June, we hope to be totally moved into the new place.

Meanwhile, I have a feeling that my blog posts may become few and far between over the next few weeks.  Bear with me!  I’ll be back eventually with plenty to share, I’m sure.  :)

Stay tuned — I’ll be announcing the winner of the Fearless Fortissimo giveaway momentarily…


Words of Wisdom

Wednesday’s Words of Wisdom

“Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, a charm to sadness, gaiety and life to everything. It is the essence of order and lends to all that is good and just and beautiful.”

— Plato

Every Wednesday brings Words of Wisdom here at the Color in my Piano blog in the form of a musical quote or joke, intended to bring inspiration or humor to the middle of your week. Have suggestions? Send an email off to admin[at]colorinmypiano.com.

Forum Q&A's, Studio Business

Forum Q&A | How Did You Become A Piano Teacher?

Well, unfortunately we didn’t get many responses to the last two week’s Forum Q&As about group lessons!  I guess nobody wants to share their secrets.  Just kidding.  =)  We did get a few good responses, which you can check out here and here.  It’s not too late to add your comments, if you are willing to enlighten us.  =)

This week’s topic is a fun one!  Please share: How did you become a piano teacher?  Tell us all about it.  Here are a few prompt questions to get you thinking back to those early days:

How did you start teaching piano?  Who was your first student?  Who inspired you to be a piano teacher?  Did you always know you would be a piano teacher?  Did you have a mentor?  What kind of piano did you teach on?

If any of you have your own blog, feel free to share your story there and leave a link here in the comments.  I can’t wait to hear your stories!  I’ve just put mine in the comments.  =)

Photo Credit: kevin mullet | CC 2.0

Studio Business

Studio Marketing: Advertising on the Internet

Hello, all!

Over the weekend, I started packing up my sheet music library into boxes since we’re going to be moving in a month or two.  All I can say is, I need to downsize!!  I have a lot of used music that people have given me over the past few years.  It makes for a great lending library, but it sure takes up a lot of room!  As backwards as it seems, I’m going to save going through my music until after we move.  =)

I’ve also begun looking into advertising piano lessons, since I will definitely need to do some of that in order to find new students.  I’ve found a number of free ways to advertise online, and have compiled a list of links below.  The first step to online advertising is definitely to create a website for your piano studio.  If you haven’t already, I would recommend checking out the user friendly Weebly.com.  If you have a studio website already, then you are ready to try out the links below!

Create a Google Places page

I recently discovered that local businesses can create their own Google Places page for completely free.  Click here for a very nice example of a Google Places page.  You can click here to get started listing your own studio business.

Free Teacher Directories

I don’t know about you, but I only use the teacher directories that are free.  I don’t know which ones are worth paying for, so I play it safe and stick with the free ones!  I suppose the chances of a student coming across some of these sites is somewhat slim, but when it’s free it’s worth a shot.  Here are the ones I found:  Continue reading “Studio Marketing: Advertising on the Internet”


May 2011 Blog Roundup

In the last month, a bunch of blogs have come to my attention — and I’d like to share them all with you here today!  Check these out.
  • Piano Escapades | Wendy Chan is a creative piano teacher who posts colorful printables and shares ideas.  This is a must see.

  • Miss Luba’s blog | Luba has a great writing style that is straightforward and down-to-earth.  Her posts are a real pleasure to read!

Continue reading “May 2011 Blog Roundup”

Words of Wisdom

Wednesday’s Words of Wisdom

“Music is the hardest kind of art. It doesn’t hang up on a wall and wait to be stared at and enjoyed by passersby. It’s communication. It’s hours and hours being put into a work of art that may only last, in reality, for a few moments…but if done well, and truly appreciated, it lasts in our hearts forever. That’s art. Speaking with your heart to the hearts of others.”

— Dan Romano

Every Wednesday brings Words of Wisdom here at the Color in my Piano blog in the form of a musical quote or joke, intended to bring inspiration or humor to the middle of your week. Have suggestions? Send an email off to admin[at]colorinmypiano.com.

Forum Q&A's, Group Classes

Forum Q&A | Group Lessons: Benefits and Activities

Last week, we talked about the logistics of having group lessons — how often, how to schedule them, etc. — and we received a few great responses.  Thanks so much!!

This week, perhaps we can continue the discussion:

What kind of activities can be conducted during group lessons?  Do your students have a favorite activity?  How do you decide what to cover each week?  What benefits have you seen from holding group lessons in your studio?

Please share your tips and ideas in the comments below!

Photo Credit: sk8geek | CC 2.0

Performances, Printables

Just Added: Recital Program Template #3

It’s recital season!

Have you held your spring recital yet?  If you haven’t, here’s a new recital program template you are free to use if you like!

I currently have two recital templates on my Printables page and they are very popular downloads.  This one is in color, although it still looks pretty good in black and white if you plan to print it that way.

To download: Visit the Printables > Other Resources page and scroll down to “Piano Recital Program Template #3.”  I saved it as a “docx” this time, and I hope you all are still able to open it even if you don’t have the latest version of Microsoft Word.  Please let me know if you run into problems.

If your spring recital has already occurred, how did it go?  I’d love to hear all about it!

Giveaways, Motivation, repertoire / methods, Teaching Piano

May 2011 Giveaway: “Fearless Fortissimo” Piano Music for Boys

Greetings!  Today I have two important announcements:

  1. I have finished all the requirements for my Master’s degree!  HOORAY!  =D
  2. Today we have a new GIVEAWAY!  Here are the details:

Andrea & Trevor Dow from yesterday’s interview have kindly agreed to sponsor a giveaway of Episode 1 of The Adventures of Fearless Fortissimo!  This pdf is a $19.95 value and contains Early Elementary, Elementary, and Intermediate Level versions of the pieces, accompanied by a three page comic.  Once you’ve purchased the pdf, you are free to print off as many copies as needed for use with your students!  Read more about The Adventures of Fearless Fortissimo piano music for boys by clicking here.

To enter to win, leave a comment on this post!

  • Ask Andrea & Trevor a question you still have after reading yesterday’s interview.
  • Tell us about how you would use The Adventures of Fearless Fortissimo in your studio!
  • Or, share any tips you have about keeping boy students motivated in their piano studies.

You may earn one additional entry in the giveaway by sharing the link to this giveaway on your blog or on your facebook page.  Be sure to leave an additional comment on this post to let me know you’ve done this, so that you get your extra entry.

The winner will be chosen via random number generator.  Enter before Thursday, May 19, 2011 @ midnight for your chance to win!

Interviews, repertoire / methods

Interview: Andrea & Trevor Dow and their Piano Music For Boys

Today I have a fabulous interview for you, from a husband & wife team who runs a 350-student music school in Canada!  Meet Andrea & Trevor Dow.

  • Andrea & Trevor run a blog at teachpianotoday.com
  • The website for their music school, Wildflower Music Studio, can be viewed here.
  • Their latest project has been to write a series of piano music intended for boys.  The series of “episodes” is accompanied by comic book illustrations that tell the adventures of Fearless Fortissimo.

And now for the interview!

*  *  *  *  *

Joy: Please tell us about your piano and/or teaching background!

Andrea: I was heavily involved in piano and singing lessons from the age of 4. I started teaching piano lessons when I was 18.  I had a rusty old Toyota Corolla packed with supplies and I drove to my students’ homes in between my university classes and on weekends.  This quickly morphed into a full-time job when I graduated with my B.Mus and within three years I had a studio of 350 students and a teaching staff of 14.  My husband, Trevor, and I created the Piano Pals Early Learning Program (a preschool piano program for students ages 3-5 that teaches both beginning piano skills as well as kindergarten math concepts), which has been extremely successful at our own studio and is currently in development to be available to other teachers online.  Right now I teach upper-level piano and singing lessons while managing our studio, and together with my husband we create online materials for piano teachers with the goal of bringing them the same amount of success we have created with our own studio.  We co-authored the teaching e-book “Piano Hands Shouldn’t Flip Burgers” last year, are active bloggers, and most recently launched our newest venture with www.pianomusicforboys.com.

What is the most unique thing about your studio/music school?  Continue reading “Interview: Andrea & Trevor Dow and their Piano Music For Boys”