I have been playing piano for nearly 40 years. I began at age 6 and have not stopped playing since. While most kids cried over having to practice, I had to be pried from the keyboard to do other things like, uh…..homework and, uh….eating!
I come from a line of musicians. My grandmother was a singer and my mother also sang and is a great piano player. My dad is a guitar player. When I was growing up my mother played piano all the time. It was common during a thunderstorm to sit in the rec-room and play with my siblings while my mother played and sand familiar tunes to musicals like the Wizard of Oz and other songs we enjoyed. My dad would often entertain us with bluegrass tunes he liked on the guitar.
I majored in piano and voice in college. I prepared and presented four solo concerts all together – two piano and two vocal. I have since taught piano lessons privately. For 10 years of my 23 years of teaching, I was the piano department chair at a high school in Maryland, developing curricula for the county piano courses, teaching in a piano lab, and chairing the piano proficiency program of the Visual and Performing Arts Program, a magnet program offering AP and college entry-level study for students from all over the county who auditioned for and attended our program for 1/2 day and returned to their home schools the other half of the day. These were students who intended to go on to college as music majors. Most of my students were able to test out of the beginning piano placement tests when placing for such for their freshman college year as music majors.
Because of my years of music study and experience, I was able to teach myself how to play flute. Currently I am teaching myself some guitar and mandolin and hope to be able to teach myself violin at some point. There is so much to learn!
Tom plays violin. His dad was a violinist with the Utah Symphony and a trombonist in jazz bands in nightclubs. He taught Tom to play violin. Tom has a 7-string electric violin made out of a tree that was cut down at a local college.
Music continues to be a big part of my life – in my career as a music teacher and in my personal life. I cannot imagine life without music.