Want to Schedule a Lesson?

Call, text, or email me!

(916) 960-6882     carrollaugustin@gmail.com

Piano Lessons

I try to teach music as a "native language" by fostering good musicianship, music-reading, and listening skills in a naturalistic, low-pressure way, and I do everything I can to avoid lessons from being overly rigid and academic. Accordingly, I've had the pleasure of watching many students blossom as musicians, growing not only in their skills but in their love for music.

I encourage students to see piano practice as a sort of meditation practice. I always begin my own practice by doing a quick body-scan, noticing how my hands in particular are feeling, relaxing any tension, and identifying and setting aside any thoughts that might distract me, and I try to teach students not only how to play the piano, but how to center themselves, improve their focus, and how to learn in general.

My teaching style focuses primarily on the European Classical tradition, but I aim to provide a strong foundation for playing any genre of music on the piano, and I encourage students to branch out and play any kind of music that interests them.

See my Teaching Philosophy page for my personal thoughts on teaching and learning music.

Age Requirements

I have no strict age cutoff for students, but I expect that all students are able to sit still and focus for the duration of the lesson, which they can usually do beginning around the age of six. There is no upper age limit, but learning as an adult beginner is significantly more challenging, and older students should make sure to enter with reasonable expectations. (More on adult beginners on my Teaching Philosophy page.)

Lesson Format

I teach from my home in Southeast Portland, typically in 50-minute lessons. I also offer 30-minute lessons, especially for younger students who struggle to sit still for a longer time period, but such a short time period usually results in the lesson needing to be streamlined and efficient, with little time for warm-ups, discussion about practice habits, answering curious students' questions, etc.

In addition to piano lessons, I offer Composition Lessons, and am happy to transition from piano to composition or vice-versa, or any kind of half-and-half or alternating lesson format.

Required Materials

The student must have regular access to an in-tune piano in good working condition. It is crucial that students acclimate to the feel of a piano's action, and an electronic keyboard simply isn't an appropriate substitute, since it will cause a student to hone all of their physical instincts incorrectly. Students with an e-piano, even one with weighted keys, should begin looking for a real, acoustic piano as early as possible. For beginners who aren't sure if they are going to continue to play long-term, I recommend renting a piano. Students will also be responsible for purchasing their own sheet music as needed.

COVID Safety

In order to protect my students and their families, I ask that everyone entering my home be fully vaccinated or wear a mask for the duration of their time inside, and to please not come for lessons if you are not feeling well.

Want to Schedule a Lesson?

Call, text, or email me!

(916) 960-6882     carrollaugustin@gmail.com