Piano Lessons Via Skype

Donna Kerns
Thanks for your interest in the Piano Lessons via SKYPE. This has taken some time to develop and set up. I am sure that there will be a few quirks to work out with each student, but we will deal with these on an individual basis. Here is a brief summary of how this will work.

At this time I am only accepting students who already play the piano, whether by note or ear. I will be working on improvisation, transposing, expressive playing, arranging, and accompaniment variations. I am looking for people who are willing to sacrifice a little time to take their piano playing to a higher level. This can only be obtained thru diligent practice. Please do not sign up for this if you are not sincere about going through with it. I am limited on the number of students I can have, and I want to help everyone that I can.

I will only be teaching Church Music. Church Music is a field of its own. There are so many variables as to what is needed to be a good church musician. I am very disappointed in the lack of this type of teaching from typical piano teachers. The longer I teach and work with church pianist who have taken lessons, I am finding the reason most teachers never teach these necessities is they themselves have a lack of knowledge of how to do this efficiently. I talk to people weekly, who have spent 4-7 years and thousands of dollars on piano lessons, and still can’t play songs from the hymn book. I say SHAME ON THAT TEACHER!!!!!!

How Will This Work?
The lessons will be taken by Skype. Upon signing up, you will receive 10 thirty minutes lessons. The lessons will start based on your current level of piano playing and will advance from there. In each lesson we will add new techniques which will have to be developed before going on to the next lesson. We will learn to apply these techniques in different keys as well. Therefore, it does not necessarily mean that the lessons would be on a weekly time frame. I don’t think that you should need more than 2 weeks to become familiar with the new techniques. So realistically speaking, you would have a lesson every 1 – 2 weeks. Because of this and also because of my schedule, the times will be flexible.

What Will I Need To Get Started?
There are several things that you will need.
Piano (tuned, as I don’t do well with untuned pianos) or a keyboard. If you have a keyboard, it must have at least 61 keys (preferably 88 keys, but we can start with 61) and have weighted action keys.
Laptop with Skype (you can google Skype for help if needed) installed and a webcam and have high speed internet.
Email address for correspondence.
Printer - A lot of the information that I give you will be songs I have set to music from my computer. I will send them to you by email and you will need to print them out and keep them.
3 ring Binder with clear sleeves You will need this to keep all the songs in that you are working on.
Church Hymnal We will be working on songs from the hymnal. I would rather you have the “Red Back” Church Hymnal, but if your church uses a different hymnal please let me know.
Paper and Pen to take notes each lesson.
In preparation for the first lesson, please copy and paste the following questions along with the answers in an email and send them to me at dkerns1964@yahoo.com
Do you have a piano at home?
Tell me where you go to church.
How often do you play in church?
What instruments do you play?
How long have you taken lessons?
What was the name of your lesson book?
What was the last level book that you completed?
What keys can you currently play in?
How hard are you willing to work to develop your talent for use in His Service?
What is the easiest way to contact you?
List 10 songs in the Hymnal that you would be comfortable playing without practice if you were called on to play for the congregation. (THIS IS YOUR COMFORT ZONE)
List 5 songs from the Hymnal that you could probably play if you were given just a little time to practice before hand. (THIS IS YOUR CLOSE ZONE)
List 3 songs from the Hymnal that is sung at your church that if you were ask to play for the congregation that would be a definite NO. (THIS IS YOUR CONQUERING ZONE)
During your first lesson, be prepared to play me a couple of songs that you are very familiar with. If you read music, I will want to hear you play a song by notes so that I will be aware of your reading ability. Please do not be intimidated or afraid of messing up. I cannot help you fix mistakes if I do not hear them. Remember, I am here to help you!

This is the question that you are waiting for. I have tried to be fair about the pricing. I do not want to take advantage of any student, neither do I expect them to take advantage of my services. Remember this will not be your typical piano lesson that you get from the local music store.
There is a one time registration fee of 25.00
The charge for 10 thirty minute lessons is 200.00 That is 20.00 per lesson. If when you have finished 10 lessons, you feel that you want to continue advancing with another 10 lessons the cost would be another 200.00 with the same payment options.
There are 2 payment options.

The first option is to pay the registration (25.00) and half of the lesson fee (100.00) up front. The balance of 100.00 would be split and paid at 10.00 each time you take a lesson. So you would pay a total of 125.00 up front, and 10.00 with each lesson. (Remember that the lessons will not necessarily be every week).

Pay $100.00 + $25.00 registration fee + $10.00 per lesson

The other option is to pay it all upfront. If you choose this format, I will waiver the 25.00 deposit. This would cost you just the 200.00 for the lessons.

Pay $200.00 in full waive registration fee

Some would question why there is not just a fee per lesson. I am looking for sincerely interested students who have a desire to serve God with the talents that He has given them and are willing to work to make that happen. I am not looking for someone to fill a slot to build my number of students to a maximum. I am not looking for parents who are making their children take piano to gain a step up the social ladder. That would be a waste of your money and my time. If a per lesson payment option is available then it is easy to say, well I haven’t practiced so I will just wait until later, or I don’t have the money this week so I will just wait thus you don’t practice. At this point, practice is neglected and lessons are sporadic eventually ending in failure.

So I have thought it out and the best scenario is to set the lessons in blocks of 10. Each set of 10 lessons will cost 200.00. Paying half of that up front will show that you plan to work hard and finish them, and not just take a couple of lessons and leave me hanging. It will also be an encouragement to you to go on because you have already invested that money into the lessons. I guarantee that I can help you advance your playing by ear, as well as teach you to improvise your music.

The only other cost you might incur would be if I felt that a scales and keys book, or another piano book would be advantageous to your learning. These would range from 5.00 to 15.00 and would not be needed before the first lesson.

If you have read this and are still interested in the lessons, please let me know. We are hoping to have everything set up to go live with the lessons by the first of April. For starters I am only going to have 10 slots available. They will be available on first come basis.

Donna Kerns
Making Music for the Master

You can reach me at the following:
By an IM on fb
706-625-0906 Home
706-307-9828 Cell
These numbers are also available on my facebook about me page.

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