Lana Smith - an Owner and a Teacher in Lana's Music Studio
LANA SMITH'S CREDENTIALS:
Accomplished award winning concert performer and accompanist.
Over 30 years of experience in teaching piano, music theory, arranging, and composition.
Author of a unique synergy method which encompasses creative American and classical European and Russian teaching methods.
Kazan National Music Conservatory, Kazan, Russia, 1990, Master of Arts (MA)in Musicology, Piano and Symphony Orchestra arranging; and Music Pedagogy;
Kazan National Music College, Kazan, Russia, 1984, Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Teaching Piano, Music Theory, and Music History;
Yalta Academy of Music, Yalta, Russia, 1979, Associate Degree in Concert Piano Performance
2003 Member of National Music Teachers Association (MTNA),
2003 Member of Pikes Peak Music Teachers Association (PPMTA),
2008 Board Member of Russian Arts and Business Council of Colorado Springs, CO
ADDITIONAL: Microsoft Certified System Administrator and Engineer (MCSA, MCSE); Implementing new technology to music lessons, recordings, accompaniments
What is the difference between Music Studio and Piano Studio?
Lana teaches piano all levels and all ages, starting from 5 years old. Her specialty is Music Theory lessons, which are integrated into piano lessons; or can be set as a special course at a student's wish. First lesson with Lana is free. Please contact Lana Smith 719-231-1616 to set up a trial lesson.
Yulia Shtanko, Associate Teacher
Hello! My name is Yulia Shtanko.
I have nine years of experience playing piano, including rigorous training in several musical styles.
I also have training in vocal technique, and I will be happy to incorporate both piano and vocals into lessons. My first student was my little sister, and that was when I realized my passion for teaching piano.
Outside of piano, I attend Pikes Peak Community College, and I am majoring in biochemistry. I aspire to become a doctor. My goal is to inspire hard work, dedication, and love for piano in every student.
Why did I decide to be a piano teacher?
What makes Lana's Music Studio special?
Why do I enjoy teaching piano to children?
What musical styles do we play?
Talented pianist and singer Yulia plays and sings various styles of music.
You can listen to her performance here:
Yulia has been studying piano with Lana Smith for several years and adopted her teaching technique.
She teaches beginners and intermediate piano at Lana's Music Studio.
First lesson with Yulia is free.
Please contact Lana Smith 719-231-1616 to set up a trial lesson with Yulia.
Julia's students' reviews:
Mr. Jared Warren:
We have been with Lana's Music Studio for almost a year now. I have three kids at various levels that all study with Yulia. She is fantastic with kids!!!
She is super patient with the ones who struggle. She is also great at pushing the ones who excel. She is always kind, but also holds them to a high standard. All three of my kids have really improved immensely this year.
Yulia teaches each one a little differently. It is very personalized. I love that it's more about developing skills as a musician than just learning the next song in the book.
She always explain how things fit into the grand scheme of musical knowledge. My oldest child has even learned about accompaniment, and how to apply her skills that way.
We are a military family, and it's always hard to find a new piano teacher after a PCS. Finding Yulia was a big win.
Charles Sutherland's review:
My name is Charles and I am 70 years old, for the past few months I have been taking piano lessons at Lana's music this was not easy as with all the disinformation on the internet it was a pleasure meeting a professional who truly cared for the industry she is in and the students she enrolls Lana assigned MS Yulia her associate instructor and the platitudes and comments just aren't enough to describe what this talented young lady does.
If you look at music as a large Ocean there is reading, writing, playing and so much more MS Yulia would be your life preserver and your life guard, she sees that you stay afloat and if you start going under by being overwhelmed she will bring you back so you can reenter that Ocean of Music and you will know your safe and will not go under with all that you learn.
She is patient, understanding, knowledgeable and most of all she's really, really cares about you as the student.
So to those that read this call commit and jump into that Ocean if Music feed your passion and desire and rest assure that you will be the best because with MS Yulia failure is not a option, this is getting long it is I just can not say enough about the quality of what and how they teach, I look forward to seeing you there.
Pat Bogart's review:
Yulia Shtanko-Gifford has what it takes to be an awesome piano teacher: enthusiasm, patience, talent, a wealth of knowledge, and a sense of humor. Yulia individualizes my lessons, is always flexible, ans super kind. She is wonderful!
I have been playing piano since I was 7 years old, and have grown up with music all around me, from piano to my native culture.
I have come to love and appreciate all types of musical styles, and have developed a passion for teaching piano to people of all backgrounds.
Outside of piano I have nurtured interests in medicine and science, tennis, and getting involved in the community. I hope to continue on my path and one day become an immunologist.
I have also come to appreciate hard work, dedication, lifelong learning, and a genuine love for piano, all lessons I aspire to pass on to my students.
Thank you, and I look forward to learning with you!
I've had lessons from this studio for several months now and I couldn't be happier. Atharva is a wonderful teacher. I'm amazed at my progress so far and excited for what the future holds for me. Thanks Atharva and Mrs. Smith!
Atharva has been studying piano with Lana Smith for several years and adopted her teaching technique. He teaches beginner and intermediate piano at Lana's Music Studio.
First lesson with Atharva is free. Please contact Lana Smith 719-231-1616 to set up a trial lesson with Atharva.
Emily Holzmer, Associate Teacher
As soon as I knew what a piano was, I knew I wanted to play it.
I started piano lessons in 1989 and my passion for music has only grown over the years.
I have been accompanying soloists and groups for over 25 years. My first ever job was accompanying voice lessons, and one of my jobs in college was accompanying instrumentalists and vocalists at the Lionel Hampton School of Music at University of Idaho.
I have also played piano and organ for church congregations for over 20 years.
Making music is one of the most human things we can do. I am excited to help adults and children express themselves musically and engage more fully with the world through music.
MA Teaching English as a Second Language BA German AA Foreign Language
Emily teaches beginners and intermediate piano at Lana's Music Studio.
First lesson with Emily is free. Please contact Lana Smith 719-231-1616 to set up a trial lesson with Emily.
I learned a lot from my own good and bad experiences.
Oh, yes, from bad experience you can learn a lot...
When I was 7 years old, my Mother took me to a piano teacher to introduce me to the piano. The teacher was an older lady, very stern and controlling. She was a good teacher, but not my type of personality. She used to give me pieces to play, and never asked me if I liked the pieces.
Finally, one of the songs I really HATED. I asked her if we could replace this piece with any other one. "No"-was her response.
"I will not play it!" said I.
"You will because I said so!" said she...
I ended up that evening hiding under the table, and my Mom could not get me out of there. I was crying, and saying "I will never play this stupid song any more, and I will never play the piano any more, and I hate music", and on, and on, and on....
Of course, I did not hate music. I came back to the piano. It happened after several years, and I was fortunate to learn music from a wonderful teacher, who was very knowledgeable, intelligent, and understanding.
She was able to walk me through many music styles, even though I did not want to play them in the very beginning. She was able to show me the beauty of a style, and help me to understand what this music is saying to your heart and soul.
Well, this story was a great lesson for me.
As a teacher, I want my students to enjoy music. When I introduce my student to a new piece, my first question is: "Do you like this music? Do you want to play it? What kind of music would you like to play? What is your favorite song?". I play for my students several pieces to see which one is more exciting for them. This makes a teacher's work harder, because I am always in search, preparing to my lessons, but it is exciting!
"Understand-Play-Read" Method for Beginners.
I compare learning music to learning a new language. Let's look and compare together:
Learning a foreign language:
First you try to understand what people try to tell you. You analyze how the language is constructed. You repeat words and phrases. I think, everyone has experienced this: you ask a speaker of a language you are learning, to teach you how to say "Good morning" or "Thank you" in their native language. It is a "famous" ;-) teaching method: "You show-I repeat after you". A lot of people make a great start with this simple technique.
First you try to understand music, how it is made: what is a melody, where the sounds go up, and where they go down, and so on. "You show-I repeat" method works just great here, too. That's how we can work with hand position, different touch, learning keys, even learning chords (!).
Learning a foreign language:
You learn new words by ear. Then you start speaking.
Learning music: You try to find familiar tunes by ear. Then you start playing.
Learning a foreign language:
When you speak and understand a language, you can learn how to read. For some people this visual support is very important, so they start reading almost at the same time as speaking. This all depends on type of personality of the student. That's why psychological judgment and flexibility is so very important in a teacher.
When you know your keys, can play and understand what you are doing on the piano, it is a good time to start reading. You are able to control your reading by ear, and logically understand how the melody or chord is made. Thus, you don't just read note-by note, but you see a whole complex, a logical pattern. Music is all built on combinations of patterns. These patterns determine a music style. Unfortunately, most popular teaching methods offer teaching starting from reading first, then playing, then (hopefully!) understanding what are you playing...
You can not reach any goal in any activity without practicing. This is very true about Music.
The only thing that most people do not know is that practice can be enjoyable! If you organize yourself to practice regularly, you will enjoy results!
Another secret about practicing is that your first 10 minutes are the hardest. It is a time when your fingers are not warmed up, they do not know where to go, your brain is working hard trying to understand a goal, a logic, and give correct directions to your fingers. Your fingers do not want to follow your brain's directions... Usually, at this moment majority leave the piano, deciding to come back to this activity tomorrow in hopes it will work out better.
But, if you would stay a little bit longer, you will see the magic of your own fingers making Music. Yes, by that time, in about 15 minutes, they already know their path, your brain solved the hardest problems, and your memory gives some relief to the brain. The music starts flowing. And this is you playing! You feel now that it is almost perfect, but one little phrase is not good enough. You work with this phrase, and it improves. Good...
Now everything sounds just great. Only not very bright. So, what if you will make this phrase a little bit louder, and this one softer, just like we speak...Try... Yes! It sounds almost professional. "WOW!, says your Mom (Wife, Husband), you sound like this guy on TV". You look at your watch and in surprise realize that you practiced 40 minutes, or may be one whole hour!
Active parent participation is central to a learning process. Your role as a parent involves observing and taking notes at lessons, helping to find suggested recordings on YouTube, and organize daily practice for your child.
Even if you feel you know little about music, you are your child's best teacher. Through your affection, support, encouragement, praise, and understanding, you can create a happy "musical environment."
Learn and play with your child!
USING MUSIC THEORY IN PRACTICAL PLAYING