From time to time, I like to take a moment (or moments) to reflect on the my experience as a musician. There are many hats that I wear on a daily basis in the music “industry” including: music educator, collaborative pianist, co-founder of a technology company, organist, choir director, music festival adjudicator, examiner, church musician, concert pianist, and…..family member.
Family member: you may ask why I name this as one of the many hats that I wear.
All music teachers will probably relate to me when I say the following: as you work with the students in your studio, throughout the years, you get to know them very well. As the years progress, you see your students grow up, mature, and become their own citizen and musician. In my personal case, I have been teaching piano lessons for many years in a variety of places, including in the comfort of the homes of my students. I visit every week on the same day at the same time; the lessons are exactly the same as they would be in a studio setting, they just happen to be in the comfort of their home.
There are many interesting perspective that I have seen over the years including: the changing of the family pet; new babies entering into families, growing up, and becoming piano students; students growing up and going off to college/university. I have also been there when families in my music studio experience sickness, terminal illness, and death.
In all of these experiences, both positive and negative, happy and sad, my role as the piano teacher has created many layers to the experiences that I have shared with my students. In essence, I am a part of their family. I have been invited to college/university convocations, I have performed music at the baptism of their children.
What a privilege it is to be able to experience life in a variety of levels and ways. Thank you to all students for offering me a part of your lives; it is always a privilege to visit your home each week.