Teaching subject: Piano
Styles: Baroque, Classical, Romantic Era
Ages: 5+ (younger, upon approval)
Specialties: Teaching beginners; Performance; Technique
Samantha studied piano at Interlochen Arts Academy (high school), Oberlin College and Conservatory (Bachelor of Arts), University of Oklahoma (Master of Arts), University of Tennessee (Artist Certificate), and the University of Minnesota (Doctor of Musical Arts).
Samantha’s performances stretch from the Esterházy Palace in Eisenstadt, Austria to Miami to the Midwest. As part of Interlochen’s 50th Anniversary Piano Tour, she performed throughout Michigan. She has studied performance with Eun-Joo Kwak, TJ Lymenstull, Angela Cheng, Jeongwon Ham, Igor Lipinski, Chih-Long Hu, Kyong Kim, and Paul Shaw.
In her free time, she loves to learn Latin dance, particularly Salsa, Bachata, and Merengue. She also enjoys traveling abroad but is happiest with friends and family.
Samantha is highly focused on her students. One of her top goals is to find out how each student learns best, which helps her guide them efficiently and effectively. Her goal is to provide comprehensive training as well as feedback to students of all skill levels, from beginner to advanced … amateur to professional. To achieve this, she applies a well-developed set of tools and her own unique personal style.
Importance of Self-Care
Samantha’s ultimate goal is to assist her students in reaching the highest level of musical performance. She recognizes that finding peace and fulfillment is essential for achieving this level of excellence. To that end, she encourages her students to engage in self-care activities, such as taking time for reading or practicing meditation. These activities are intended to help students alleviate anxiety and find balance in their lives. Anxiety can hinder performers’ ability to communicate effectively with their audience. By addressing this issue and helping students manage their anxiety, she aims to enable them to express themselves more eloquently through their musical performances.
Importance of Movement
Drawing on her experience as a former competitive gymnast, Samantha finds incorporating dance movement in her teaching practice enormously helpful. Practicing movement helps students successfully build stamina and leverage their body weight while playing. She may ask students to move to their music so that through preparation, practice, and even performance they can find great inspiration and attain physical grace while at the piano. For example, incorporating movement inspired by ballet can make playing seem effortless and render performance more convincing musically. She also encourages students to either go to the gym or take dance lessons to support whole-body movement in playing music.
Importance of Self-Discovery and Personal Growth
Music instruction offers enormous opportunities for a positive impact on a student’s life. Playing piano, or any instrument, helps build character while enhancing the spirit and feeding the soul. Samantha’s strategy for teaching music involves not only helping students understand and interpret what is written on the page but also involves leading them to self-discovery. Connecting with students in one-on-one conversations during, before, and after their lessons, helps Samantha establish a strong student-teacher bond.
Samantha is very spiritual and uses her understanding of the interconnected nature of all faiths and spiritualities to interpret the deep feelings and emotions students have while playing. She believes that learning how her students view spirituality in its broadest sense helps her provide an accepting space where students can truly be themselves.
During lessons, Samantha strives to create a positive and supportive atmosphere where students feel they are capable and in which they will thrive. She is dedicated to creating a calm and safe environment for students. By doing so, she helps them to focus their attention and energy on their musical and personal growth without being weighed down by outside distractions and concerns. Providing this type of nurturing environment can significantly contribute to her students’ well-being and their ability to thrive musically and emotionally.
30 min. – $36
45 min. – $52
60 min. – $70
- 10% off a set of 36 lessons over fall and spring semesters (Sep to May). Non-refundable, payment required in advance.
- 10% off a set of 13 lessons in the fall semester (Sep to Dec) or in the spring semester (Jan to May). Non-refundable, payment required in advance.
3 siblings (2 options available):
- Same as the discount for 2 siblings.
- 10% off every month all are registered for lessons.
Billing and Payment:
All students will be billed at the beginning of the month. Payment is due by the 5th of the month. A late fee of $25 will be charged if the payment is received after the fifth of the month. A fee of $35 will be charged for bill underpayment.
No refunds for missed lessons.
- Make-up lessons may be scheduled for cancelled lessons at no additional charge only if the student provides at least 24 hours’ advance notice of cancellation.
- Make-up lessons are scheduled based on the availability of both the student and teacher.
- If a student is unable to attend a make-up lesson, the lesson and fee are forfeited.
- In the event Samantha must cancel a lesson, a make-up lesson will be offered at no additional charge at a mutually agreeable time.
Contact Samantha directly in advance to request any schedule changes.
- 3 to 4 weeks advance notice for vacations
- 1 to 2 weeks advance notice for sports-related activities, special outings, and any other appointment of a confidential nature
- 1 to 3 days advance notice for illness
An online (Zoom) lesson will be offered if the student, parent, or legal guardian feels road conditions are not safe for traveling to a lesson. If the student does not have access to Zoom, the lesson will be rescheduled at a mutually agreed time.
Students are expected to:
- Come to lessons promptly, with trimmed fingernails and clean/sanitized hands.
- Practice 30 to 60 minutes daily, a minimum of five days a week.
- Bring a pencil with eraser, metronome, music, and a recording device to lessons.
Unless otherwise cleared with Samantha, parents of students aged 10 and under are expected to sit in and observe the lessons.
In person or online: Monday through Friday 10:30 am to 2:30 pm.
Maurice Ravel’s Concerto en Sol (in G)
Recital at University of Minnesota: Isaac Albéniz’s España, op. 65
Recital at the University of Oklahoma: Beethoven Op. 109, first movement