Lessons are available at my private home in San Francisco. Lessons are $50 for 30 minutes, paid in advance monthly. Children from age 11 and up with motivation to learn the instrument are welcome, as are adults of any age, beginner or intermediate.
My approach is first and foremost focused on proper guitar physics and ergonomics. Sitting posture, guitar positioning, left and right hand positioning, and the critical element of the angle of the forearm both across the guitar and arching over the guitar to let the fingers reach the strings.
Following proper form comes basic playing of the instrument, and work is extensive in a mix of picking patterns: arpeggios, scales, and tremolo prep. The fingering skills and dexterity of the fretting hand is developed.
Music begins immediately with simple one and two string pieces, and moves forward quickly. Quality music of the guitar repertoire is used from the very beginning to make the effort rewarding, with a particular emphasis on the works of Leo Brauwer.
Music theory is covered sufficiently to support the development of the guitar playing skill, and for those interested can be a more focused area of education. Tutoring on music theory is available.
Practice methods and routines are developed and results reviewed. Progress charting is optional.
For intermediate students, the focus is on more advanced skills such as use of artificial harmonics and tremolo development, along with the more challenging intermediate level masterpieces of the guitar repertoire: Villa Lobos, Tarrega, Bach, Sor, and many others. The development of fingering selection and notation skills, leading to transcription skills, is addressed.
Performance is the sharing of our music with others, and it’s a key area of the development of a musician. Ongoing students are enabled with occasional small recital opportunities, and these are approached formally with longer term prepared pieces.
Lessons are a critical component of learning how to play the classical guitar. It is a musical instruments that inordinately stresses physical technique, with complex and independent motions and specifics between the two hands. Training on correct fundamentals is vital. Errors in positioning early in learning to play will stick with guitarists for the rest of their life until corrected, and the ultimate correction time and effort can be extremely large. (I know, this happened to me; see my instructional material.)
Use the contacts page to inquire about lesson openings.