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Teaching a Variety of Genres

As Potentials Music celebrates its 12 year as a studio, I'm so humbled to have been able to serve and help musicians and actors fulfill their ultimate potential. That's always the goal. Recently I had a thought that has been resonating about the gargantuas amounts of music and theater in the world, yet at times I feel like I only teach or perhaps know a minuscule amount. Then the next thought was how much I've been blessed to teach students and or my favorite part is learning from my students a variety of theater and music. After mentioning to a parent, who is also a music teacher, he states the gratitude he and his wife have with the variety of music and acting I do teach through the studio. Plus he loves the games I share with their kids. That really sparked this blog purpose. I don't have to know every genre of music, yet some basics will make others successful. I try to inquire with experts, which has changed everything as a teacher. I don't have to know everything, yet I must keep learning.

In the past, voice and piano students have wanted to learn country, rock, pop, folk, rap, jazz, blues, rock, worship, Broadway, Movie songs, gospel, Opera, Christian, world music and so many more styles. I've had more student who are very eclectic, knowing more songs than me. Had and have acting students who want(ed) to do Disney, Animated films, Musicals, Broadway shows, Monologues, scenes from Horror, Romantic, Comedy movies, Shakespeare and beyond. There are things that I know, yet the students bring so many ideas to the table, which I'm able to teach to other students later.

As a piano teacher, I have the students utilize curriculums, yet they learn popular and familiar songs (including Classical songs) and teach other music that they have not heard of. Which they always enjoy the new songs. As a vocal teacher, I don't us specific curriculums, yet they learn techniques to sing well. Focusing on breathing, connecting the singing voice with breathing, basics of the larynx and throat, vowels, head voice, falsetto, mixed voice, posture. The acting students experience story boarding, staging, basic costuming/props/set design, character development, voice acting, emotions. Plus each of these areas they learn and experience even more concepts.

Then I try to provide opportunities for the students to demonstrate what they are learning at events and opportunities. I don't call them recitals, as it causes "anxiety and stress". When I refer to events as opportunities, students and parents are more relaxed.

So the point of this blog is yes teach what you know, yet teach ideas you don't. Stretch yourself in good ways. Learn something new from your students. Make mistakes and show the students how to respond to mistakes. Teach a variety of music and theater all the time and never stop learning. Praise and be sure to tell your students and parents how much you appreciate, love and adore them.

What are your thoughts of teaching a variety of music and theater? What are some of your favorite genres to teach and where are you still learning? Would like to know. Thanks for your support. Blessings.


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