By Judith Plooy, Piano Instructor
In my teaching, I usually try to incorporate different styles of music into students’ lessons. There are a few reasons why I do this:
First of all, students learn and develop different skills and techniques in playing different styles of music. I would never want any of my students to feel inhibited or intimidated by certain styles of music, simply because they were never exposed to it. My long-term goal for my students is for them to be able to play anything they would like to play.
Secondly, I want my students to understand and appreciate many styles of music. It is never my intent to alter personal preferences. I do want them to understand that every style of music has a history and purpose, and to be able to recognize certain characteristics of each style of music. I have found that some students discover that they particularly enjoy playing a certain style of music over others, or that a certain style of music seems to be better suited for them, and that’s okay. I will never be opposed to a student wanting to hone in on one style of music after trying a few different styles. Moreover, if a student wants to try something different, I will always be open to that too. Sometimes we need to try a few different things in order to discover what works best for ourselves.