Kids Piano Lessons Manhattan New York
The Manhattan Piano Academy offers piano lessons for kids and adults in all levels of experience from beginner lessons to master classes.
Unlike the typical American approach to piano instruction, which involves rote memorization and uniform instruction for all students, our academy follows the Russian school of piano instruction, which uses imaginative approaches to make lessons fun while the student learns. Rather than insist the student follow a set course, our teachers tailor lessons to meet the needs of each student. This is especially helpful with children beginning their piano lessons. In essence the Russian method makes the music instruction fit the child rather than making the child conform to a generic course of instruction.
The origins of our method of instruction come from the treasures of the Russian school of piano: First Meet with the Music by Anna Artobolevskaya (1905-1988) and The Art of Piano Playing by Heinrich Neuhaus (1888-1964). Anna Artobolevskaya was an outstanding piano teacher at the Moscow Central Music School who was known for her enthusiasm and endless creative approaches tailored to individual students.
All teachers at the Manhattan Piano Academy are trained in Artoboleyskaya’s methods, and, under the guidance of head teacher Katrin Arefy, offer exemplary piano instruction. Our method, teaching philosophy, and individualized lesson plans make piano lessons for kids a great deal of fun for students while maintaining the academy’s high standards for professionalism and learning. For example, instead of giving the same book to all beginning students, a student begins with an empty binder. With guidance from the teacher, the student will select the first piece to place in the binder. The student will continue to participate in the creative process by helping the teacher select the next pieces for his/her binder.
The love of music is contagious. From the very first lesson, the teacher shares his/her love of music and introduces the student to his/her passion for music. By introducing the student to the beauty of music (not just lesson books), the student experiences the joy music can bring and grows to love music of all kinds. Part of the teacher’s duty is to nurture this innate love for music, so that it can flourish.
Lessons at the Manhattan Piano Academy involve lively music that is often taken from Artobalevskaya’s book or from A Thousand Stories for a Little Pianist, and other collections of folk music that we have arranged through the years and made available for use with students. We ensure that during lessons, the beginning student listens to music. This includes not only listening as the teacher plays the piece that the student will learn in the near future, but also recordings of orchestral music that help the student become familiar with other instruments and gain a wider view of musical genres.
Especially for our piano lessons for kids in Manhattan NY, teachers create an atmosphere in which students don’t realize that they are having a lesson.
Games, bright colors, and stories of animals are part of a child’s daily life. Our teaching method brings those elements to the piano lesson as a way of taking music to the child’s life. The lessons progress through listening to the music, story time, games, playing the piano, coloring, and drawing. Each game and story that we use in class has a very specific pedagogical goal behind it. Using stories helps the student to remember easily what is being taught and to retain that knowledge forever. We want music and music instruction to become as natural a part of the student’s daily life as stories, games, and toys are. It is important that we bring music into the student’s world and not take the student to the music lesson. In this way we nurture creative artists who are able to express themselves in sounds, colors, and words, and who enjoy the beauty of good music.
The academy’s teachers are pianists and also artists who allow students space for creativity and do not subject students to cookie-cutter instruction and rote learning. Using lively folkloric music with beginning students helps them create an artistic image of the musical piece. The teacher’s duty is to help the student to use images, colors, and stories to interpret the pieces in his/her own way.
At the Manhattan Piano Academy, our piano lessons for children in Manhattan NY know that the connection between the teacher and the student is another very important tool that aids learning. Udovina Galperina called this connection “an invisible thread.” Manhattan Piano Academy teachers work on building that thread from the moment they meet the student. The relationship a teacher builds with the student is based on mutual trust. The teacher trusts in the student’s ability to learn in his/her own way and at his/her own pace, and that the student will respond to our teaching methods. This connection with the student is the most important part of our teachers’ work. Music is not simply a goal; it is also a tool to help students find their path to becoming better human beings, to be more responsible, more honest, more mindful, and more self-aware.
In addition to all levels of piano instruction, the Manhattan Piano Academy offers:
- Virtual and in-person performance opportunities
- Online solfeggio classes
- Annual exams to mark a student’s progress
With our children’s piano lessons in Manhattan NY, the Manhattan Piano Academy provides exceptional piano instruction while nurturing the student’s love of music, imagination, and creativity to make piano lessons fun and successful.