Music Theory, Piano, Singing
Where are Lessons Offered
In Student Home
Online via Webcam
I have taught music for more than 15 years, helping students of all abilities to succeed in learning new music and playing the piano with artistry and enjoyment. My goal is to share my passion for the best music in all genres.
I moved to West Chester in May 2013. My studio is small but growing. I offer the opportunity to have your piano lessons in your own home.
My teaching style is a little bit unconventional because of my experience studying Alexander Technique. I recognize that playing the piano is not only a mental activity, it is also physical. While pianists may not exert themselves as much as dancers or runners, respect for the physical aspect requires awareness of where a gesture originates, and attention to how to carry it out. This is related to the practice of mindfulness meditation.
As students advance and begin to explore repertoire, I also give consideration to the fact that our world is larger than Europe, and there are more kinds of music in it than European fine arts and American popular culture. Even within the Euro-American tradition, there are less famous composers whose musical careers deserve study. Clara Wieck Schumann, Nathaniel Dett, and Florence Price are personally inspiring to me, but students are free to find what engages them most.
My Musical Education Background
B.M. in Performance from Lenoir-Rhyne in Hickory, NC
M.M. in Performance and Sacred Music from University of Cincinnati (College-Conservatory of Music)
Genres and Subjects Taught
I offer a comprehensive piano study program which includes performance of both solos and duets, sightreading, theory, technique, and improvisation. Although I specialize in classical study, my students also play popular contemporary music that interests them. Students have opportunities to play in PMTA recitals, festivals and competitions, and to use their talents to support charity in an annual service project. I offer the opportunity to build lasting relationships with other musicians and supporters of the arts.
Students receive 35 lessons during the academic year in addition to competitions, recitals, and other performance opportunities. Rates are $35 per lesson ($140/month) for the 30 minute lesson, $50 per lesson ($200/month) for the 50 minute lesson. There is an annual, non-refundable registration fee of $46 (due by August 15) which covers the fees and materials for the Constance Murray Piano Festival, Dorothy Sutton Music Festival, "From the Top" Fall and Spring Recitals, and the KITS music theory curriculum and test (a nationally recognized music test with a national honor roll). Students who begin lessons in the middle of the academic year are eligible for these events in the next academic year.
Ages / Skill Levels Taught
4 years old to adult
beginner to advanced
My Certifications and Awards
Strader Competition finalist, Cincinnati, OH
Hickory Musical Club Award, Hickory, NC
Littman Competition third prize winner, Concordia, Bronxville, NY
Member of MTNA and PMTA, and Main Line Music Teachers Association
Member of American Guild of Organists
My Musical Influences
I have studied piano with Susan Dorogi Miller, John Cheek, and Ying-Ying Liu. I have studied organ with Martin Jean, Richard Heschke, and Roberta Gary (with whom I also studied Alexander Technique).
West Chester, PA
Susanna is a wonderful instructor to our 8 year old, Brandi. She has been under Susanna's instruction since Feb 2015. Brandi not only loves her lessons she looks forward to practicing, too! Susanna has wonderful people skills and she does an amazing job relating the instruction to our daughter. Teaching children is a gift in its own right....teaching children music....that's inspiring. I would recommend Susanna to you and your family without reservation.
I really enjoyed having Susanna as a piano teacher. She is personable and very patient. Susanna is considerably knowledgeable about so many aspects of music. She exposed me to many new and interesting musically related things. I learned a great deal from her and grew as a piano player. She also plays the piano beautifully.
My daughter received piano lessons from Susanna for several years. She was patient, friendly and very thorough with her lessons. Susanna has a great knowledge and appreciation of music history as well as piano instruction.