Here are some answers to commonly asked questions:
What lessons are best for me?
Mini Musicians I and II: Preschoolers (ages 3-6) beginning their musical journey in a group setting without the commitment of daily at-home practice. No instrument required.
Tiny Fingers Takeoff: Preschoolers (ages 4-6) beginning their musical journey in a combination of "buddy lessons" with another student and "one-on-one" time with the teacher. An instrument is needed at home and daily practice is needed to make the most progress. This option works great for siblings or friends who are close in age and who are starting their music journey at the same time.
Discovery Piano: For beginners (ages 7+) OR those who have already completed two years of Mini Musicians and/or two years of Tiny Fingers Takeoff. Students can enroll in private lessons with a mix of "off the page" and "on the page" learning OR "buddy lessons" with another student and "one-on-one" time with the teacher.
Conservatory Piano: For students who have mastered method piano and are ready to or already have transitioned into a conservatory program (i.e. Royal Conservatory of Music). Students take weekly private lessons as well as a weekly online group theory class to deepen their understanding of the foundations of music. Conservatory students have the options of participating in formal piano examinations if they wish to.
Adult Piano: These lessons are for adults (and some older teenagers) who are looking to pursue piano lessons for recreational purposes. Private weekly lessons are available with a studio membership or a la carte to suit your schedule and commitment level. Learn the music that you want to.
What does a Studio Membership Include? (Tiny Fingers Takeoff, Discovery, Conservatory, and Adult Piano)
32 piano lessons (September-June)
2 studio recitals (typically held in December and June)
3 group "piano party" workshops throughout the academic year (September-June)
1 summer project in a pre-recorded 6-week lesson format
Participation in the Airdrie Rotary Festival of Performing Arts is encouraged!
(Registration fees are not included in the Studio Membership and are the responsibility of the student.)
Can parents sit in on lessons? Parents are welcome to stay at the studio during lessons; however, students are generally less distracted and make more progress without a parent present. Due to space restrictions, we ask that parents do not stay for any group classes, including Mini Musicians and Tiny Fingers Takeoff. Be aware that the studio does not have a separate waiting room; we ask that anyone who chooses to stay observes quietly so as not to disturb the student(s).
What is the lesson schedule? The studio follows the Rocky View School Division's and the Calgary Catholic School Board's calendars for Christmas, Easter and spring breaks. There are no lessons on national holidays.
Please note that for Studio Memberships, there are more than 32 piano lessons in the academic year (September-June). Excess lessons that fall within this period may be cancelled at the studio's discretion to accommodate illness, continuing education, festivals, vacation, or use as a flex day. In order to hold a lesson time for the following academic year, summer tuition is required for each student whether or not they attend lessons/complete summer projects during the months of July and August.
Do you offer make-up lessons? Because the studio is run at full capacity, there isn't room in the schedule for make-up lessons. With appropriate cancellation notice, students with a studio membership may request an Online Lesson (Zoom) or Practice Video (recorded and e-mailed within 24 hours following the cancelled lesson time) in place of their lesson at the studio. Cancelled lessons are considered forfeited lessons and there will be no refund. Students should not come to their lesson if they are ill.
Are books included? The cost for any books is included in your tuition.
What type of piano should we have at home for practice? An acoustic piano is the best instrument to play on. However, a digital piano with full-sized (approx. 1 inch) weighted keys with the full keyboard (88 keys) and a pedal is also sufficient. A smaller keyboard is okay for the first year, but an upgrade is needed for the second year.
How much do I need to practice? The amount of daily practice expected depends largely on the level and age of the student and how fast they want to progress. A reasonable guideline is a period equal to the lesson length OR, for younger students, three times their age (5 years old = 15 minutes per day; 10 years old = 30 minutes per day). This can be broken down into multiple practice sessions each day if desired. As with anything requiring practice, the more you do it, the better you get. Students who practice 7 days each week will see the most growth every year.
What are the fees? Registration and tuition fees vary depending on the lesson format you sign-up for and your weekly lesson length. Standard fees are listed on our website pages for Mini Musicians, Tiny Finger Takeoff, Discovery Piano, Conservatory Piano, and Adult Piano Lessons.
When do I pay? Registration fees are invoiced at the time of enrollment. All other tuition fees are invoiced on the 1st of each month one month in advance of the lessons they are paying for. Payments are due the same month of the invoice date.
Invoices that are past due will have a $20 late payment fee per student added to it and lessons will be suspended until payment is made. Outstanding invoices more than 14 days overdue will result in the termination of lessons.
How do I pay? The studio accepts payment via e-Transfer.