I just love music. Every piece is so cool and amazing—it's beautiful and has different notes. Each type of music and note creates something new and interesting. All the techniques are wonderful and they can make one same note have many sounds. Every music/instrument is very unique and different but so good at the same time. I find music through guitar beautiful and amazing. I like singing along to my songs while playing on my guitar. Sometimes I just like to play some notes on my own. I love the different sounds and things that make a violin sound so graceful like a ritardando, it makes the end of a piece so beautiful and vibratos just make largely unique sounds.
The joy he brings to his lessons is so uplifting and always brings a smile to my face. There is not a challenge he will shy away from. It is clear that music means so much to him and is a big part of his life. I am honored to teach him at this point in his musical journey.
I love music because I can sing and dance to it. Violin classes with Ms. Mackenzie are great because she is kind and makes me smile.
I am excited to announce Eleanor as July’s student of the month. I am nominating Eleanor because she shows up everyday enthusiastic to learn and brings so much laughter and light to our lessons. She is always asking questions, focused on finessing her technique, and is reflective and perseveres when she struggles. I look forward to Wednesdays to see what stories she has to share and what revelations she has had over the past week of practice. Keep up the great work Eleanor, you’re becoming a fabulous violinist!
I really enjoy playing Guitar. It sounds great, and the new songs that I am learning are awesome! It is really fun learning with Mr.Doug, because he teaches well and makes everything I learn easily understandable.
I am nominating Akshar for Student of the Month because he is consistently prepared, works super hard, and is always excited about guitar. Akshar and I recorded his Level 2 project earlier in the semester, and he also just took his Level 3 Musical Journey Test and did extremely well! Each and every week, Akshar shows up to lessons ready to go, and we have been able to make steady progress for years because of this. He also thoroughly enjoys music, and is often playing pieces that he teaches himself. I am so excited to see where his musical journey takes him. Congrats Akshar!
I love music because it helps me express my feelings. I like to make my own compositions and I enjoy performing music for others, especially my family.
Micah Gervey has been a very disciplined and talented student. His piano playing is improving day by day, specially musicianship. His piano lessons are always very productive and exciting!
I like music because it sounds Amazing! Singing and humming let me make music even without a piano! I love to play my piano and sing along! My favorite song I ever learned was Whirling Leaves! It sounds so beautiful!
Micah is an incredibly enthusiastic and dedicated student. She has shown great patience in her learning, taking into account that she started lessons at Orpheus during the middle of the pandemic. I look forward to meeting Micah when we go back in person!
Music is a very versatile thing, as there are so many things you can do with it. I love music for this reason. This versatility gives me so much potential to learn in both the electric and classical guitar fields. In other words, there are so many different "genres" of music in the genres of electric and classical music. In electric, there are many, many bands, and certain bands have certain playing styles which can be hard to master. In classical, factors like time period, nationality of the composer, and the composer themself all play an immense role in the resulting piece. This versatility also makes it fun. Every new song will be different, and it is much more fun to learn different material. If you learn one song over and over again, it will get boring, but if you learn new material, it will always be really fun.
When I came to Orpheus over a year ago, I disliked classical music. I found it boring and way too hard to master the fingering. I like the fact that I was pushed to go out of my comfort zone and learn classical guitar. Learning classical guitar also helped me refine finger technique on electric guitar, as well.
My teacher, Mr. Wyatt has played such a huge role in helping me learn new songs and refine my technique. He is an awesome teacher who can really encourage as well as make lessons really fun. Thank you. -Avaneesh
Avaneesh has been a constant hard working student since he started taking lessons here about a year and a half ago. Over this time, he has developed fingerstyle skills that he never had while also furthering his electric guitar picking techniques to new heights. Any lesson with Avaneesh is exciting due to how much material he comes prepared with between the 2 main genres that we cover. I am also extremely proud of how he has handled his approach to playing and lessons during the pandemic by seeing the idea of being home more as an opportunity to practice and listen to music even more than he did while things were normal. As he hits the ground running with high school in the Fall, I am very excited to see how the guitar will continue to be such a defining and ever improving part of his life. -Mr. Wyatt
I like playing on the piano so that I can learn new songs. -Ayaan
Ayaan has made so much progress with me and has only been taking lessons for one month! I'm so proud of how hard he has been working and love his curiosity and excitement for music! -Mr. Mike
I love music and singing because it relaxes me. Music makes me feel free, calm, and happy. Since I was a baby, I loved to sing! Also, music has become a very important part of my life. Best of all was joining Orpheus Academy of music and having the best singing teachers in the world! ( Ms. Chelsea and Ms. Jessica)! Thank you Orpheus Academy for helping me to achieve my goals! -Jena
I chose Jena for Student of the Month because of her infectiously positive attitude and eagerness to learn and make music. She brings so much energy and enthusiasm to all her lessons and performances! Jena is incredibly open to feedback, always excited to try new challenges, and never shies away from putting in hard work! It is such a delight to work with Jena - thank you for sharing your voice! -Ms. Chelsea
I love music—it makes me happy and I enjoy stretching my voice and learning new songs! -Krishna
I am thrilled to nominate Krishna for Student of the Month! Krishna comes to every lesson very well prepared and eager to jump right in. She brings a tremendous amount of energy and focus, and she takes great initiative in spotting areas where she'd like to make improvements and practices those areas thoughtfully. As a result, she has already grown so much in our short time together! You should be very proud of the work you are doing, Krishna! Thank you for sharing your voice with the Orpheus community.
Why I love Music
(Short fun poem)
Music is water
Roars and sings
Through guitar strings
While piano keys ring
Music has connection
Of beautiful collections
Music is sound
Never to be drowned
As if it were a wound
It will always be found
I am very honored to be chosen as Student of the Month. Music has helped me grow into the person I am today with the many awesome concerts, lessons, relationships, and musical connections. It has brought me so much joy and appreciation for those who supported me along this journey. Thank you so much for eleven years of great musical experiences!
I am so impressed by how Ayame is able to do great quality practice despite a busy schedule. She is a state champ swimmer and honors student at school, and still manages to get better at guitar every week. She is part of a prestigious youth ensemble, the ACG Youth Orchestra, which recently went on tour in San Francisco. Bravo Ayame!
I'd like to give a big shout out to Ms. Beth because she encourages me to work hard, practice and helps me find challenging songs. I wouldn't have learned to play the piano without her. I love playing the piano and once I get better I want to learn other instruments.
Throughout the pandemic, Anya remained dedicated to piano lessons whether she was at her grandmother’s house, or out of state! When we began making plans for the Valentine’s Recital, Anya asked if she could learn “All You Need is Love”. Once she mastered that piece, she inquired about another song about friendship, “You’ve Got a Friend in Me”. She practiced diligently to play and sing both songs. I was impressed with how motivated she was, and also that she wanted to play two special songs that celebrate love and friendship. Anya is preparing for her Musical Journey test in May. She is a wonderful student with a happy outlook...and most of all, loves music!
“Amelia found music classes during a world wide pandemic and instantly became a fan. She thinks that the sound of guitar and songs can make people feel happy and peaceful and she’s all for it. She also thinks playing guitar is just the coolest thing ever. She can’t wait for her classes with Mr. Wyatt and Ms. Jessica because she can learn more cool stuff, for an example she didn’t even know that people can actually read music! Being able to play guitar also makes Amelia feel very confident. She believes that everyone should learn how to play guitar.” -Amelia
"Amelia comes to class ready to make and share music every week. She has a smile ready for everyone in class. If one of her fellow classmates is struggling with a concept, she is their best cheerleader. Amelia works hard on the concepts and the songs we are playing in class. She is always ready to take the lead and play whatever song we’re working on. Her enthusiasm at each activity radiates even through Zoom. She is a delight to work with each week." -Ms. Jessica
“I feel happy when I play piano!”
"Ethan is a joy to have in class! I perceive that he is an attentive listener and an avid learner. He often volunteers to perform excerpts of our ensemble songs, and I can hear improvement and musicality from week to week. He contributes to class activities with respect and accuracy that show me that he is learning and thriving. I look forward to seeing him grow as a musician!"
I really love my musicianship class - every time the class ends, I realize how much fun I had. I love the games we play and how you learn music with them. Ms Ruth always gives us second chances on our homework and teaches us again if we don’t understand.
Lyla is always attentive, well-behaved and well-prepared for class. She participates in class activities with enthusiasm and musical skill. Also, Lyla always goes the extra mile for video recording projects, with great attention to detail. Lyla is a pleasure to have in class!
Using music to redeem a social condition and leave the world a bit better is profoundly meaningful to me. I especially love composing music and expressing my heart’s feelings to bring social connections to my audience. Giving classical guitar concerts for nursing homes, I saw how music boosted the moods of elders by linking our souls and communicating profound feelings we couldn’t verbalize. I am very thankful to be part of the Orpheus community to do social good through music. My teacher, Dr. Klondike Steadman, has been particularly influential on my growth not only as a musician but also as a human being, as he has emphasized many times that “music is a form of social bonding, a gift we give not only ourselves, but also the world.” Over the past 12 years, he has inspired me to develop as a complete guitarist—excelling in technique, music theory, composition, heartfelt expression—and to share music with global communities. I will remain forever grateful to him and the Orpheus community for enabling me to experience life more deeply and spreading the gift of music to society.
Aylin has been a guitar student at Orpheus for twelve years, and during that time she has participated in private lessons, group musicianship, honors guitar quartet and trio, guitar ensemble, dozens of summer camps and so much more.
But it was the arrival of our greatest challenge as a music school this past March that brought out the best in Aylin. Completely on her own, she came up with several powerful ideas that have become central to our mission at Orpheus during this pandemic. Aylin wrote to me and said, “I know that Orpheus values giving the gift of music to the community. Especially during this stressful time, I think retirement homes, for example, might need us most." And, since my entire staff was consumed with moving nearly 700 students from in-person to online instruction, Aylin took the lead in crafting what was to eventually become the Musical Postcards for Seniors initiative. This program has motivated our students to invest themselves deeply in practicing music because they know that they can submit a video that will make a difference in the lives of residents of over 750 retirement homes across the US, Canada and Australia.
In addition to starting and running the Postcards program, Aylin also started our "Practice Buddies" system -- all this while applying to college (she already has early acceptance to the UT Neuroscience Department!), keeping straight A's, and helping out with the Orpheus Guitar Ensemble. Aylin truly exemplifies what it means to be a member of this community through her own learning and service to others!
"I want to thank Mr. Benjamin for nominating me for Orpheus Academy's student of the month. I like Mr. Benjamin because he is always encouraging me. My favorite part of the piano lesson is practicing rhythms. My goal is to be able to play any song that I like. "
"He started learning piano this year and he has demonstrated incredible discipline and curiosity towards music. He always comes prepared and sometimes even does the extra things I did not ask him to do. He is attentive and very observant in the lesson, it is always a joy to work with him."
I love to play guitar because it is an activity that I strive to get better at and is very calming. I like the multitudes of ways you can play, and how every piece is a different challenge to play and perfect. I also really appreciate that Mr. Turner has taken on the challenge of teaching me fingerstyle, which is a very difficult style to teach correctly. It makes the lessons so much more enjoyable because he really knows what I want to achieve and learn.
Tal came to me already a competent player, and I could very quickly see how I could help him become an even better all around musician. He is one of my hardest working students and I can really tell how much work he puts into practicing every single week. One of the great things about teaching Tal is that he has always had a vision of where he wants to be musically, but that does not get in the way of being open to anything I'd like for him to try to get him to where he wants to be and beyond. I look forward to every lesson with Tal not only because he comes so prepared and motivated, but also because his lessons truly challenge me to come extra prepared as both a teacher and performer to best aid him in attaining his goals.
"I love listening to music because it energizes me. When I listen to good singers I think to myself what did it take for them to get where they are now.
I love my piano and voice lessons, they are fun and sometimes challenging. I feel proud of myself when I master a piece."
"He is very talented boy.
He complete his Musical Journey Test Level 3 without mistake.
Ron is taking piano and voice class as well."
"I love music my entire life and my teacher Mrs. Mackenzie is a great teacher to me. I started violin two months ago. I love to dance and sing but most of all I love to play violin."
“I am excited to nominate Abby as student of the month. Abby has only been taking lessons with me since August, but has made incredible improvements in her playing. When we first began, Abby struggled to use her bow effectively. Now, she is playing beautiful Detaché and Martelé strokes with ease and is on her way to becoming a true master of her bow! I always look forward to Abby’s tenacious attitude and inquisitive spirit in lessons. Thank you Abby for allowing me to guide you in your Musical Journey, and thank you to Mom, Lisa, for playing a pivotal role in Abby’s achievements as well.”
Pieter Vanden Bout
My favorite thing about learning guitar is playing for other people. I loves his lessons with Jesse!
Pieter has been a dedicated student of mine for nearly two years. His joy and energy is always present during his lessons and his ability to produce beautiful tones from the guitar is simply amazing. He surprises me regularly with his uncanny memory and his unique imagination. I am happy and honored to have him as a student and excited to nominate him for student of the month.
Navya is a 2nd grader. A 7 year old who acts like 11. She has the most fun and fights with her best friend, her sister Shriya. Navya loves singing, dancing and being silly. Navya has an infectious laughter and her carefree and easy attitude makes her so much fun to be around.
Navya comes to her lesson prepared and eager to sing! She is organized and self motivated. At every lesson, she asks lots of questions and makes sure that she understands weekly assignments. She then returns to her lessons with improved technical skills and a better understanding of her music. I am happy to nominate Navya for the student of the month award!
I love to play and listen to music, as it makes me very happy. I love that Ms. Beth teaches me new songs (especially the Disney ones). I have a lot of fun playing them.
Sharanya has been a piano student at Orpheus for about one year. She is very involved and has participated in performance classes, recitals, and Postcards for Seniors. Sharanya practices diligently and is so excited when learning a new concept or song! I am proud of her hard work and truly enjoy teaching such a talented young lady!
Our son Nathaniel has improved in his guitar skill last year. Mr Jeremy is a great teacher and has connected with Nathaniel in special way. His teaching skills and methods are efficient
Nathaniel has continued to show his work ethic and enthusiasm in every lesson through his preparation and musical personality. He takes great attention to detail in the clarity and musicality of his pieces alongside demonstrating a high level of technique and tone. The progress that he continually makes every week demonstrates his perseverance and love for the guitar. Nathaniel’s curiosity and strive for excellence will bring him far in anything that he tries and I am so thankful for the opportunity to work with him.
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