January 2017 Newsletter

Here's a great article describing music as a fundamental aspect of our humanity, expression, and psychology; it's inspiring!

What's happening this month:

Methodology Development:

LAPS is evolving its teaching methodology into a modular one - independent elements combine to create a more personal approach for each student. 

Of course, piano and theory are requisite modules, but the rest is determined by the interests of the student - ear training, improvisation, reading the staff, composition, choosing favorite songs, etc. We'll link you to an outline of the methodology as soon as possible.

Lessons, Lessons, Lessons:

Watching students explore and grow!

What's happening next month:

March Workshop: On the evening of Wednesday, 22 March, we invite students to play for each other, and celebrate music at our studio in Los Feliz. Refreshments will be provided. We encourage the students to share what they've learned - whether it's at home (after or during a lesson), at workshops, or at a dinner party!

Welcome New Students! We're excited to have you on board!

As always, if you have any questions, suggestions, or concerns, please don't hesitate to msg or contact James at 646.285.4342.

Keep exploring, practicing, and have a great month, everyone! See you at the piano.

February 2017 Newsletter

We wish you a productive and musical New Year!

As we aim to grow, we now offer referral incentives; By bringing new students into the LAPS fold, you earn discounts. Drop us a line to find out more!

Click here for Exciting New Research Studies on Music and the Brain

Welcome new students! We are excited to have you on board!

Fun Fact: The Invention of the Piano

This piano was invented in Italy in 1709 by a harpsichord maker Bartolomeo di Francesco Cristofori. His first creation was called gravicèmbalo col piano e forte which, in Italian, means harpsichord with loud and soft. This name was later shortened to ‘fortepiano’ to then just ‘piano’. As you may already know, the harpsichord is only capable of producing sound in certain volume and expression, so having an instrument that is sensitive to touch was a game changer. The first piano invented was so expensive that even average rich families could not afford it. You could predominantly find the instrument in the homes of aristocrats and royalty for nearly a century before it became more accessible to the rest of the public. First piano was of course different in terms of its looks and was not quite perfected as it is today. It wasn’t until the 19th Century that these instruments were produced much like the ones you see in the present.

What's happening this year: 

1. Standard Methodology:

FaberChildrenAdults; a time-tested and universally approved piano teaching methodology for children and adults.

Ear Training: Julie McIntosh Johnson Level 1-10; For attuning the ear, and learning elements of theory; Compliant with National Standards for Music Education

Basics of Keyboard Theory: Julie McIntosh Johnson; Level 1-10 - Intended as a supplement to private or group lessons, Basics of Keyboard Theory; Compliant with National Standards for Music Education.

Original Methodology: We are integrating additional, original methodology that fills in the gaps in the above methodology. Currently, this hones reading the staff, musical creativity, and ear training.


2. Workshops:

In order to meet the needs of our students, we will offer small workshops in songwriting, production, and composing. And we are always open to suggestions.


3. Recitals: 

Stay tuned for our seasonal workshop recitals; There's one coming up in March.

Practicing Guidelines for Parents:

First, thank you for creating a positive musical environment. Your guidance is essential. Parents uniquely define their child's learning environment.

This is a long read (so feel free to read it piecemeal) of extremely useful guidelines for helping your child/children practice; Many of you are already implementing many of these:

"Your children will need help – Up until about age 11, children need hands-on help with home practice. And even though you yourself may not read music or play the piano, your assistance is still very much needed! Parental help can take the form of reading lesson notes, organizing practice time wisely, providing encouragement through difficult sections or situations, and seeking out answers for “I’m stuck on this” problems.

"Your children need you to establish a routine – Piano practice that happens every single day is by far the most effective practice structure. 30 minutes three times a week is just 90 minutes. 20 minutes seven days a week is 140 minutes. The total difference is 43 hours of missed practice per year if your children are only at the piano three times a week!

"Short, focused and regular visits to the piano help your children retain and understand what they are learning while making the most of generally short attention spans. If practice is enjoyable, rather than arduous, your children will naturally (and unknowingly!) increase the time they spend on the bench… eventually reaching that 30 minute mark.

"Setting a regular time of day when piano practice happens “no matter what” will ensure a daily practice routine is easy for your children to maintain.

"Your children need lots of encouragement – Learning to read music and play the piano can be difficult; it can be discouraging… it can feel overwhelming. Your children (no matter what their age) need loads of encouragement.

"And not just verbal encouragement. You can show your children that you value their efforts by, inviting friends and family to listen to them play, and taking the time to sit and listen to them practice with your undivided attention.

"Your children need a home instrument that is enjoyable to play – Much of the pleasure from playing the piano comes from one’s ability to emote feeling, nuance and expression through music. Even young beginners will experience great satisfaction from making beautiful sounds…. so choose an instrument that gives them the best opportunity to make beautiful sounds. Guidance from your children’s teacher will help you find an affordable piano (don’t worry, there are many great and affordable options) that will give your children the tool they need to truly experience piano lessons. An investment in a good instrument protects the investment you are making in your children’s musical education.

"Your children need a positive practice environment – Aside from providing encouragement, your children need you to create a positive practice atmosphere. Help your children avoid “cramming” the day before lessons. Stick to your daily routine to avoid weeks of forgotten practice (which lead to feelings of inadequacy on the part of your children). Music is joyful… and so practicing music should be as well. This is, fortunately, something that you are able to create easily with a commitment to regular practice.

"Your children need you to communicate with their teacher – Working as a parent/child/teacher triangle is the optimal way to ensure progress and success in piano lessons. Be sure to communicate often with your children’s piano teacher. Check in on how lessons are progressing, ask for help if something is difficult for your children at home, let your teacher know when practice weeks have gone extremely well (or not so well). Working as a team means your children are supported equally on all sides at all times.

Learning to play music is a life-changing experience. And, as a parent, the process is a thrill to watch. Being a major part of this accomplishment is incredibly rewarding! The profound pleasure of being a “piano parent” far outweighs the required extra efforts; and this is, by far, the most important thing that piano teachers want parents to know about piano practice."


March 2017 Newsletter


What's happening this month:

First, and most importantly: 

Kudos to all students for playing, applying themselves and having so much fun!

Music is meaningful when Shared:

Spring Recital Workshop:

We're currently tallying available and ready students for our Spring recital workshop and it's looking like a weekend recital is best. We'll be in touch one on one. 

We're still expanding, and having a blast:

Our LAPS methodology has been standardized, and we've taken on new teachers. 

Introducing violin lessons with Anna Corcoran!


Anna teaches classical Violin, and Irish and Scottish fiddle. She brings her wealth of knowledge, with a can-do, supportive style that makes her a great fit for violin students of all ages and levels.

Anna earned Bachelor of Music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and a Master of Music degree from University of California Los Angeles, where she was awarded full scholarships. She has performed with ensembles such as the Magik* Magik* Orchestra, the Trinity Alps Chamber Players, the Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra and the Santa Barbara String Quartet. Anna recently held the position of first violinist of the VEM Resident String Quartet at UCLA, performs professionally weekly. She can be seen performing in chamber ensembles around town. More about Anna

Please contact James or info@losangelespianostudio.com if you or someone is interested in violin or piano lessons.

As we continue to evolve, we'll keep you informed as to what new elements we can offer you and/or your child. 

Welcome New Students! We're excited to have you on board!

As always, if you have any questions, suggestions, or concerns, please don't hesitate to msg or contact James at 646.285.4342.

Keep exploring, practicing, and have a great month, everyone! See you at the piano!


Happy April! Spring is here! 


Here's what's happening this month:

Performance Practice:

Today is our very first Workshop Recital for students aged 5-7; we're looking forward to celebrating music with them today!

On May 6, we'll be hosting another Workshop Recital for students aged 7-13. 

And...next year, we'll kick off our first annual group recital!

(Adults, we have something in store for you, too!)

Music is meaningful when Shared:

In collaboration with Fête de la Musique, we will be coordinating with Make Music LA to get anyone in the studio interested in performing on 21 June during the global "Fête de la Musique" musical celebration.

For standardized testing, and public performance options, LAPS will be teaming up with MTAC this summer!


Welcome New Students! We're excited to have you on board!

As always, if you have any questions, suggestions, or concerns, please don't hesitate to email or msg James at 646.285.4342.

Keep exploring, practicing, and have a great month, everyone! See you at the piano!

May 2017 newsletter

Happy May!

Thank you parents for coming out to our 4-7 year old Workshop Recital last month. Part of the bedrock of our studio is sharing music, and it was great to see it in practice!

Here's what's happening this month:

Performance Practice: We're having a series of private workshops recitals for students, age 7-14.

Studio News: 

We're growing, changing our name, and taking on more teachers. More next month! 

Los Angeles Piano Studio is now a member of the MTAC. Testing and more performance opportunities will be made available to our students.

Music as Development: Here is a great resource for you to peruse to learn more about the phenomenal benefits of music for all ages. There is no shortage of proof, thanks to modern research and technology. Here is an expansive article about the effects of music on development, and its power as a social interaction. 


Welcome New Students! We're excited to have you on board!

As always, if you have any questions, suggestions, or concerns, please don't hesitate to email or msg James at 646.285.4342.

Keep exploring, practicing, and have a great month, everyone! See you at the piano!

June 2017 Newsletter

Happy June!

Summer is almost upon us, and all is well!


Our next recital for students ages 4-7 is tentatively scheduled for 9 September.

Our next recital for students aged 8-13 is tentatively scheduled for 7 October. 

Please pencil it in your calendars, and if you have any conflicts let us know!


Listening to diverse music is an integral part of musical education. Here are some good ideas & background information re: exposing children to music. And, here is a YouTube playlist of classical pieces worth sharing!

Studio News: 

We're Happy to Announce our new name: "Craft Music", and new of enthusiastic, experienced teachers offering new instrument instruction. 

Feel free to learn about them here


As always, our studio & methodology is three-fold: we introduce music as a means of creative expression; we tailor curriculum to the needs and desires of the student; and we encourage music as a means of sharing and collaborating - all taught in the context of the broad music tradition of which we are a part. 

Thanks, and see you at the piano!

Juliy 2017 Newsletter

Happy July! Summer is here! 

It's been a fantastic school year at the piano, and students have progressed with playing, composing, ear training, and improvisation. 


Summer Goings-on:


And there is no better time for musical enrichment than during the summer; live performances for families (many of them free) are aplenty. Indeed, Los Angeles is a bevy of musical opportunities all summer at the most beautiful locations: MacArthur Park, The Getty, The Hollywood Bowl, The Ford, Topanga Canyon, and more. Please don't hesitate to get outside and hear music in your community!

And, yes, for Harry Potter Fans, the LA Phil is playing the score alongside the film at the Hollywood Bowl this coming Thursday-Saturday!


Also, Craft Music has obtained free tickets to a musical sing-a-long for all ages at the Ford Theater on July 24th; just ask us for tickets.


Welcome New Students! We're excited to have you on board!

As always, if you have any questions, suggestions, or concerns, please don't hesitate to email us at admin@craftmusicla.com.

Keep exploring, practicing, and have a great month, everyone! See you at the piano!

August 2017 newsletter

Happy August! Here is what's happening @ Craft Music this month! 

We've confirmed our October workshop recitals, and are ready to enjoy the last full month of summer. 

Here's an article re: the significance of exposing children to classical music (and yes that means John Williams too!);

And here's a playlist option on YouTube to share and/or enjoy yourself! Feel free to write with any questions.

Welcome New Students! We're excited to have you on board!

As always, if you have any other questions, suggestions, or concerns, please don't hesitate to email us at info@craftmusicla.com.

Keep exploring, practicing, and have a great month, everyone! See you at the piano!

September 2017 Newsletter

Happy September! 

Along with our studio's rapid expansion (welcome new students!), and October recitals, things are going just great at Craft Music. 

In addition, Oriana, Anna and Ryan all have availability to take on more students; for every student you refer this month, you get a free lesson, and a free music book!


Now some interesting facts: 

Things to do in Los Angeles:

It's not too late to see John Williams conduct the LA Philharmonic tonight, or Sunday.

Music and Health:

An Article on the Benefits of Music

I know I keep on harping on this, but it never ceases to amaze me how impactful music can be; I see this time and time again.

Again, Happy September, all, and if you have any questions or comments, please don't hesitate to contact us!

Keep exploring, practicing, and have a great month, everyone! See you at the piano!

October 2017 Newsletter

Happy October! Autumn is here! 

This is the month of workshop recitals. For those attending, we are looking forward to seeing you at 4pm any given Saturday this month at our studio in Los Feliz:


4760 1/2 Franklin Ave.

Los Angeles, CA 90027


There is current availability at these recitals; if you or your child would like to play, just send us an email, or text us at (646) 285-4342.


Studio News: 


1. We welcome our new piano teacher, Irene Kim

Irene is available to teach piano for Craft Music. Any student she has is a lucky one! Irene is an experienced teacher, and an accomplished pianist; you can read more about her here. We are very happy she's with us!

2. Craft Music now has an Instagram - @craftmusicla. Follow us!

3. You can now access our Newsletter Archive to peruse interesting articles about music, practice, music and health, and more. We will continue to update it throughout the month.

4. Bonus: Every student referral will earn you a free lesson, and a free music book!

About Town: Now you can buy tickets to see music performed by the LA Philharmonic, the LA Chamber Orchestra, and the LA Opera - 3 top-tier musical ensembles in your hometown! So go out and experience music!



As always, if you have any questions, suggestions, or concerns, please don't hesitate to email us at info@craftmusicla.com.

Keep exploring, practicing, and have a great month, everyone! See you at the piano!

November 2017 Newsletter

Hello Everyone:

It's not too late to play these tracks:

It's Halloween and here are some great 'scary' classical music pieces to play; you'll definitely recognize one or two.

It's the 21st century: and yes, in the spirit of Halloween, NASA has published spooky soundsculled from the solar system! 

Studio News

Thank you, to those who participated in the Workshop Recitals. We'll have another group of them during the late winter - all before the spring Recital. 

There are plenty of exciting new perks to the studio coming up, so stay tuned.

The Studio continues to both improve and grow in size; thank you for your help.

Thank you, Oriana!

We'd like to take a second to thank Oriana Falla for her wonderful work as a piano teacher with the studio. Her caring and enthusiastic teaching welcomed many of our students into music, and we wish her an exciting and prosperous life in New York City!

Happy Halloween, everyone, and see you at the piano!

Craft Music

December 2017 Newsletter

We are having our first annual recital on Saturday, May 26th from 2-6pm at the Steinway Gallery in Pasadena. We'll organize the recital by slots and will happily be presenting pianists, guitarists, and violinists. Please mark 26 May in your Calendars. 

There will also be another string of Workshop Recitals come winter - Dates TBD.



If you are in the market for a new piano, Steinway, is a great choice.

Craft Music's Contact @ the Steinway Gallery is Joy Chiou. 

There are always incentives via our studio! - i.e. holiday sales and financing promotions. If you are interested, feel free to reach out to James for more info.


We'd like to welcome our new students to Craft Music. Thank you for joining us on your musical journey.




Our new brass teacher, Rachel O'Connor! Rachel hails from Toronto and teaches trumpet and french horn, and other brass. You can learn more about her here.

As always, any referrals for instruments are appreciated and rewarded! 

We are happy we are all a part of this thriving musical community.

About Town

Our teachers will be actively performing over the next month or so. 

Our pianist, Irene, will be playing with Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra(performances upcoming).

And Rachel is performing Tchaikovsky Symphony 4 with the Claremont Concert Orchestra on December 9-10.

And there's always the top-notch LA Phil!



Here's a link to our newsletter archive if you'd like to peruse articles about music.

Have a great month, Everyone! And happy December!

Craft Music

Jan. 2018    Newsletter

Happy New Year everyone!

A New Year is a great time to take stock of our goals and aspirations. Luckily, with music, there is always a chance for growth and creativity!

Craft Music is growing! Welcome to our new students. We are so pleased to have you in our musical community.

Our teachers have availability in 2018 and are eager to take on new students. For every student you refer this month, you get a free lesson, and a free music book!

If you're looking for more reasons to be in music, here are presentations on the Mozart Effect - music and the brain:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0JKCYZ8hng (Anita Collins- How music affects the brain)

Links: January events around town

Huntington Gardens; Here is a little art and a little music from this fantastic local So-Cal ensemble;

'Tis the season for LA Phils family friendly concerts at Walt Disney!



In our rapidly changing world, technology is taking steps to reach kids through apps. Consolidate play time with music learning with these apps suggested by the Guardian:



Here’s to making music a priority in 2018!

Feb. 2018    Newsletter

Happy February!

February brings another month of play and preparation as we gear up for a spring season filled with performing opportunities from workshop recitals to home salons! Our first salon is next month. It will be in Beverly Hills, and we hope you can make it! For more information, see attached document.

The Bright Feather Duo will be performing Mozart, Bach, Beethoven, the Girl from Ipanema, Harry Potter's Hedwig's Theme, Prokofiev, and more. It's a great opportunity to experience some virtuosic and accessible performing up close. 

Bright Feather will also have a Q&A focusing on performance, practicing, instruments, and more.

Craft Music is growing! Welcome to our new students. We are so pleased to have you in our musical community.

We are also welcoming two new teachers this month!

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Evan, a graduate of USC, is a successful singer-songwriter, and a highly skilled guitarist. Evan teaches guitar, ukulele and songwriting to students of all ages and skill levels. 

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Jonah is our new piano teacher specializing in jazz, improvisation, and basic instruction. He graduated from Berklee School of Music with Dual Bachelor’s Degrees in Piano Performance and Electronic Production and Design. 

All of our teachers have availability in 2018  and are eager to take on new students. Read more about each of them at HERE.

And as always...for every student you refer this month, you get a free lesson, and a free music book!

Workshop Recital

We are in the process of planning Workshop recitals this Spring. If you are interested in offering your living room and piano as a place to bring a small group of Craft Music students together one weekend afternoon, let us know and we'll provide more details! Your generosity is appreciated!

February article of the month

Can listening to classical music improve your life?  An interesting new article from the BBC for the parents out there who want to engage more in music listening!

Video resources for more learning

Ted-Ed on youtube is a great resource for accessible videos that are fairly short and contain eye-catching animations.

Why should you listen to Vivaldi’s four seasons? An in-depth look into the popular work with wonderful animation.

Events around town

Musicals are such a great way to get kids involved in music and theatre. Go see Aladdin this month!

Go to a free concert in DTLA’s Grand Park! They happen every other Thursday during lunch hour. Check Grand Parks calendar for upcoming dates.

Play more with each other this month! Encourage your kids to show their friends what they are learning and to play around on their instruments. Making music a social activity is a priority at Craft Music.

Enjoy and have a great month!