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Ron Palka

Cleveland, OH 44111 (map)


Lessons Offered

Piano, Music

Where are Lessons Offered

In Teacher Studio

In Student Home


About Me

I am an instructor, performer and Music Director at Redeemer Lutheran Church. I am currently on faculty at the Oberlin Community Music School at the Cleveland Music School Settlement. I have previously taught at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, Beck Center and Baldwin-Wallace Preparatory Department. I also spent a year performing and providing piano lessons in Brazil.  I have a Masters degree in piano performance from the Manhattan School of Music and a degree in Library Science form Kent State University

I perform regularly as a member of the Double Digit Piano Duo and as the accompanist for The Coastliners ensemble from the Northcoast Men's Chorus.

I am known as the "Traveling Piano Teacher," primarily serving Cleveland's West-Side suburbs. Most of my students prefer the convenience of having lessons in their own homes. This works particularly well for siblings and parents who are also interested in learning with their children.

My Musical Education Background

I have a Master's Degree in Piano Performance from Manhattan School of Music and a Bachelor's Degree in Performance from Queens College.

My major teachers include Philip Kawin and Clive Lythgoe.

I also have a Master's Degree in Library Science from Kent State University.

Genres and Subjects Taught

I believe in working with each student to enable them to be their own best teacher.

I have a Classical music background but believe that learning and growth can take place with all kinds of music.

I work with students on technique and theory so that they are familiar with all basic scales, chords and arpeggios.

Lesson Rates

My lesson rates are:

$26/half hour
$36/45 minutes
$46/one hour

I provide the hourly discount for additional lessons within one household as well. In other words, 2 half hour lessons for siblings would be charged at the one hour rate.

I teach at my home or at yours. There is a minimum $13/visit transportation and convenience charge for lessons in your home.

We have 2 full studio recitals per year. I charge an annual fee to cover the costs associated with these recitals. In addition, we may have occasional performance classes in students' homes or in mine to prepare for the recitals.

Ages / Skill Levels Taught

I teach all ages and levels, from beginners to advanced students. I especially enjoy working with adult beginners and intermediate teens.

My Certifications and Awards

M.M., piano performance Manhattan School of Music
M.L.S., Kent State University

My Musical Influences

The composers who have had the greatest influence on me are Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Chopin, Schumann, Rachmaninoff and Debussy. But I also love Gershwin, blues and gospel, Ella Fitzgerald, Sinatra, Broadway, Brazilian Samba, Latin Salsa and Merengue. You would find on my iPod operas of Gluck and Puccini alongside Rihanna and Cee-lo Green, Duke Ellington, ELO, Eminem, James Brown, Heart, Journey and Boston. I love to help my students grow and learn with whatever music most interests them while providing a solid backbone of classical training.


Service Area


Student Reviews




Oberlin, OH

Ronald Palka is a highly trained, busy, full-time professional performing pianist and piano instructor. In spite of many activities he is organized, reliable and timely in dealing with his studio of students. While expecting the same from them he is flexible and collaborative. Mr. Palka is a patient teacher. He is engaged, attentive and empathetic, interacting constantly with his students during their lessons. He wants his students to understand each piece in addition to playing it accurately. He is inventive in helping students to solve problems. He teaches with high expectations but without coercion. Ron Palka is particularly adept in helping adult students with their inhibitions and memories of remote childhood lessons. There is lots of dialogue and real fun in the lesson experience! As a skilled performer and teacher Mr. Palka can develop talented a student from beginner to conservatory applicant with no “hand-offs” along the way and with those nuanced skills that are sure to spell success.




Oberlin, OH

Ronald Palka has a special talent for teaching older students. I have been his student at the Community Music School of the Oberlin College Conservatory of music for several years and am now enjoying working on some Bach Two-Part Inventions with him. He is both very patient with me and very demanding of me. Now my husband, who is also retired, is also studying with him.


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