Jun 11th 2014 Piano Recital Plans

We are trying something new for the summer recital. Students will be playing 4-5 pieces that they have learned throughout the year. I thought it would be interesting for the audience to see how the students have progressed this year in terms of level of difficulty. It is also taking pressure off the students during the last few weeks of school and the start of summer vacation. I can’t wait to see how the audience responds.

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Dec 3rd 2012 That Was A Great Recital

It’s been a few weeks since I managed to sit down and blog.  First there was the recital, then Thanksgiving, and a few days away with friends. 

Let’s start with the recital.  The students all did a great job.  Even the ones that I worried about all week.  Never let it be said that I don’t have faith that a kid can pull it together when it counts.  All the practice paid off. 


We were missing a few student but everyone played 2 or 3 pieces so it was a very nice recital.

When I arrived at Miller Piano to make sure everything was set up a little something caught my eye.  The conversation with Steve went a little like this:

“Is that a Baldwin Artist Series Piano?”-  me

“Why yes it is.”- him

“Let me go call my husband.”- me

ring ring-  “Are you going to be upset if I buy a grand piano today?”-  me

“Go for it.”-  husband

to Steve  “I’ll take it.”-  me


Say hello to my new piano.  It is a Baldwin Artist series built in 1975.  The sound is glorious.

Happy Birthday to me is all I can say.

The students are enjoying it and already commenting on how much better prepared they will be for festivals and recitals since they will have a chance to practice on a grand.  Lessons the first week with the piano were quite fun and I am having a wonderful time playing all my favorite Christmas tunes.

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May 24th 2011 Summer Lesson Special

Brunner Studios is now offering a special discount to new students on summer Piano, Voice and Oboe Lessons.  Schedule and Pre-Pay 4 Lessons and Receive 2 lesson for FREE!  This is a savings of over $50.

Summer Lessons offer flexible scheduling.  Students who take at least 4 summer lessons will receive priority registration for fall lesson times.


Contact Brunner Studios today!

Conveniently located near Idlewild Rd and I-485.

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Mar 14th 2011 That Doesn’t Belong There

Yesterday I was reading old blogs from The Yarn Harlot.  It was there that I ran across this one http://www.yarnharlot.ca/blog/archives/2005/03/25/forget_it_just_forget_it.html.  If you will notice, her day ended with finding a juice box in her backpack hand been impaled with a knitting needle.  No need to describe that mess.


You would be very surprised to know how often students bring juice boxes to their lesson in their music bag.  Who seriously thinks it is a good idea to put a Capri-Sun in the bag full of music books?  I get that kids like their after school snack, but leave the juice in the car.


Here’s hoping for a juice box free week of lessons.


capri sun

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Dec 21st 2010 New Studio Availability

As 2010 comes to a conclusion, I am excited to announce new studio availability for the coming year.  Lesson times are now being offered from 9:00 am until early afternoon Monday thru Thursday at Brunner Studios home location.  These times are perfect for the homeschooled student, working adults with flexible schedules and retirees.  Also, Fridays will also be opening up for lessons.  Friday times are from 9:00-6:00. 


Gift certificates are available for purchase for a monthly or semester basis.  So go ahead and get that family member a keyboard or piano for Christmas.  Another wonderful gift is having a piano tuned for someone who already owns an instrument. 


I look forward to seeing what the new year will bring for those students who are interested in non-traditional lesson times.  Please contact me for more information.  For current students of Brunner Studios a 10% referral discount will be credited to your account. 


Have a wonderful Holiday Season and I hope to see you soon!


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Sep 13th 2010 Helping Your Child Succeed at the Piano: Part 4

Today’s blog is about making progress in practice and in lessons. Every student progresses at a different rate and it is my job make the connection between assignments and how much the student is practicing.

Progress and Goals:
My goal is for students to learn and understand their music completely and in a timely manner. What is a timely manner? This is different for each student based on their ability. I try not to assign more than what I feel a student can accomplish in their set goal of practice time. This may mean that some pieces are intended to take more than one week and that is completely fine. As long as steady progress in being made I consider the student as being successful in their progess.

We all have good and bad weeks and up and down lessons. What I keep a look out for is if there is a major disconnect between practice time recorded and progresses being made. If a student has begun a new level or idea and is slower to grasp it, that is apparent to the teacher and adjustments can be made. If a student is going through a lull in wanting to practice and adjustments need to be made to how much is assigned that can be done. If a student and parent confirm the amount of practice and there is still a disconnect with the material being learned, then we need to evaluate how the student is practicing. In this case, usually the student is just making endless repetitions of a piece, but not focusing on the challenging aspects of the music and we need to review how to practice and to go over the topics listed above.

As a teacher, I want all my students to be successful at their own level. Students often feel discourage when pieces must be repeated week after week. They feel that they aren’t making any progress. By practicing smarter at home and asking the right questions, everyone should see a gradual increase in skills. As always I am happy to try and help in between lessons via email.

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Sep 3rd 2010 Helping Your Child Succeed at the Piano: Part 1

Every week in the studio I encounter the same situations repeatedly.  A few years ago I wrote a document called Helping Your Child Succeed at the Piano.  The idea behind this paper to is to help the non-musician learn to navigate supervising practice at home.  I hope these ideas will assist you in supervising the daily practice required in piano lessons.

The Notebook:

Each student is given a three-ring binder assignment book.  Every week the new lesson is written in, usually with comments regarding what the student needs to pay attention to in terms of corrections that need to be made in the pieces.  The student should be looking at this assignment book every day!

Many times students come to a lesson and say they forgot to practice a piece.  If they are checking their practice regularly against the assignment book, it helps cut down on this occurrence.  Also, practice time should be recorded on the day that it occurs.  This is another chance to look at the assignment to make sure all material is being covered.

Please visit again on Tuesday for Part 2 of Helping Your Child Succeed at the Piano

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