This is the first installment of our Tutor Spotlight series. Our amazing tutors are one of the main reasons why Progress has been successful and we thought this is a good way to get to know them a little better...
This time, we find out more about our wonderful Piano Tutor, Rachel Bishop.
What would you say is the main benefit of learning to play a musical instrument?
It can improve higher brain functions. Studies have proven that students who received piano lessons scored 34% higher on tests.
Learning to play a musical instrument can also improve emotional health by reducing stress and anxiety.
How did you get into teaching piano?
My piano teacher was aging and struggling to take on young students. She suggested I tried to teach a girl who had recently enquired about lessons with her.
I was quite nervous, but it came quite naturally to me and I instantly loved the feeling of helping somebody to read and understand music.
That was in 2009 and I have taught piano and music theory ever since.
What can people expect when having lessons with you?
I adapt each and every lesson to the individual. I can make it fun for young children with games and activities or help an advanced student to develop their technique in an exam piece.
I also try to incorporate every aspect of an exam into regular tuition including; scales, sight reading and aural. These are all essential skills to becoming a better pianist and also no part of an exam will be feared as I will have fully prepared the student.
Why do you like working at Progress?
I like working at Progress because it is a professional yet relaxed setting with high quality tutors.
I have learned a lot myself and it is nice to be able to work with other musicians.
What do you think makes a good teacher?
Patience! Every person learns at different rates and some people find certain things much more difficult to understand.
I like to build a rapport with each student and adapt my teaching to their individual learning style.
I think bringing in a bit of variety too, so that the lessons do not become stale or boring.
What’s the single piece of advice you would offer someone who is currently learning to play a musical instrument?
Practice little and often. An hour at the weekend will get you nowhere.
You need to keep going over what you have learned to improve.
If you could perform with anyone, who would it be?
It would be pretty cool to play piano with Muse. They are a phenomenal live band and they really inspired me as a teenager to keep practicing and improving.
Please take the time to visit Rachel's Profile page here