June 2011 Blog Roundup

Yikes, June is almost over already!!  I’d better hurry up and post about these new (to me) links from around the blogosphere!

  • Evolving Music Education blog | Dan Shure is a passionate piano teacher who recently moved his studio from a home location to a commercial location.  Check out his blog to find fun ideas for games and activities during piano lessons.

Continue reading “June 2011 Blog Roundup”

Forum Q&A's, Studio Business

Forum Q&A | Studio Business Structure: Sole Proprietorship, LLC, Corporation…?

It’s time to get another Forum Q&A going!!  Let’s talk about business structure options for teaching studios.  Despite having a music degree, I still know very, very little about setting up a business.  I doesn’t seem right…I wish one of my college courses had covered this topic at some point.  :/

Do you have a solo proprietorship, partnership, an LLC, or a corporation?  What are the benefits of each option?  Do you have a separate bank account set up to manage studio income and expenses?  Do you hire an accountant or bookkeeping services to help with the accounts and taxes?  What other business advice can you offer?

I hope you can help me out — and hopefully other readers will benefit too!  Update: Here is my follow-up post. 

Photo Credit: o5com | CC 2.0

Professional Development, Studio Business

Studio Marketing: Creating Value

Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of requests for posts about how I’m building my studio since I moved to a new area.  I have been reading a lot of books and articles about marketing lately, and I’ve been learning a lot!   I’m happy to share what I’m learning, so I’m going to be posting a whole series of posts on studio marketing.  The most important lesson I’ve learned is going to be addressed in the first post of the series: today’s post about creating value.  Enjoy!


Marketing, at a most basic definition, means promoting your business.  While advertising and branding are indeed part of it, marketing is much more than that.  Marketing is the combination of all your efforts to get people to remember your business, including having a creative website and make it easier to find, with optimization tools, as the one you can find in SEO services as Malaysia SEO that help any site with this.  Marketing builds your brand, and your brand is what gets people to remember your business.  And when people remember your business, they are more likely to buy from you. Continue reading “Studio Marketing: Creating Value”

Music Theory, Practice, Printables, Teaching Piano, Technique

Just Updated: Scale & Arpeggio Fingering (2 Octaves) Reference Sheet

Some of you may remember the Scale & Arpeggio Fingering reference sheet I posted in December of 2010. About a month ago, a friendly reader made some very helpful suggestions for improvement, and so I spent quite a bit of time revising the printable. It’s called “Scale and Arpeggio Fingering for Piano (2 Octaves)” and you can find it on the Printables > Other Resources page.

I originally created this printable with my intermediate/advanced students in mind who are working on 2- and 4- octave scales/arpeggios and have trouble keeping all their fingerings straight in their head once they start getting them under their fingers. It’s nice to have a guide tucked inside the front cover of a book to refer to now and then!

The document contains three pages:

Page 1: Rules and tricks for remembering scale and arpeggio fingerings (as shown on the right).

Page 2: A listing of the fingerings for each Major and Harmonic Minor scale/arpeggio (2-octave) for piano.

Page 3: A continuation of page 2.

Of course, there are a few different ways to finger scales and arpeggios, so I’m sorry if the fingerings listed in this printable do not correspond with the ones you prefer to teach your students. These are the ones I like to use, and I thought I’d share it with anyone who might happen to find it useful.

If anyone else finds typos or inconsistencies, please let me know! I did my best to proof-read the fingerings, but it is certainly possible that I still may have missed something!

  Scale and Arpeggio Fingerings (2 Octaves) Reference Sheet (86.0 KiB, 118,422 hits)


My Piano Purchase!

You saw the sneak peek photo yesterday… here’s the full scoop on my recent piano purchase!

I’ve been shopping on Craigslist for quite some time, and I learned that a lot of piano shopping is about personal preference.  My husband and I looked at an absolutely breathtaking Knabe from the 1920’s, for example, but as soon as I played a few notes I knew it wasn’t the piano for me.  Somehow, it just didn’t grab me.  I wanted to find something that I would love to sit down and play.

Then, we looked at a 5’7” Kawai…..

The owner was asking $3500.  It was built in 1966, and the inside parts and the finish are all in original condition.  I could see it probably needed a little bit of work, but I really, really liked the touch.  It was fun to play!

I hired a registered piano technician to inspect the piano for me before I bought it.  The technician confirmed that it does need some work, but we were able to talk the owner down to $2500.  My new piano was delivered last Friday!

Sorry the photos are a bit grainy…I used the camera in my iPod Touch.

Continue reading “My Piano Purchase!”


…I’m Back!

Hello, fellow piano teachers!

I hope you’ve missed me during my blogging hiatus.  :)  My husband and I are now happily moved to northwest Ohio, where we are renting a lovely old three-bedroom house within walking distance of downtown.  We have so much more space here versus our one-bedroom apartment back in Michigan, and let me tell you – this house was made for running a piano studio!  Lots of photos are coming soon, so stay tuned.

So, what have I been up to the last few days/weeks?

  • Unpacking boxes.  ‘Nuff said.
  • Organizing piano studio books and materials.
  • Creating/updating studio documents (policies, forms, etc.).
  • Updating my piano studio website.
  • Buying a used grand piano (!!!).
  • Putting “Piano Lessons” posters all over town.
  • Giving a piano lesson to my first new student.

I do have one sneak peek photo to show you for now……………

These are exciting times!  I feel like I have so much to share.  I hope you’ll stay tuned.  :)