TEACHING

 

 

 

 

 

 

Piano Pedagogy

Cynthia Huard Personal Teaching Philosophy

Create communities through music and with music

Teach to individual learning style

Inspire, ask for the highest musicality always

No borders between genres

The growth of the human being through music.

Revealing and enabling the best in the human spirit

Connect music to the eternal within us

Teaching Testimonials

Words from students and parents
Daniel Brayton

Daniel Brayton

Parent

Cynthia has a magical way with children and young adults that brings out their talent and love of music. For the last decade Cynthia has kept my son engaged, excited, challenged, and moving to ever-higher levels of musical appreciation and achievement. She never fails to match his whimsy, independence, and musicality with the same qualities, which she also possesses in abundance. When he tilts at some unforeseen musical challenge (The Appassionata! Gaspard de la Nuit!), she meets him on his path and guides him to new realms of technique, expression, and understanding. My son loves studying piano with Cynthia and eagerly looks forward to every lesson. We are deeply grateful to have a pianist and piano teacher of her caliber, dedication, kindness, and generosity of spirit in our community.

Greta Hardy-Mittell

Greta Hardy-Mittell

Student

It's hard to imagine a time before lessons with Cynthia. I had been playing piano for two years before I switched to her studio, but she completely transformed my relationship with the instrument, from the way I think about technique and practicing, to my love of music in general. Without Cynthia's guidance, I have no doubt that I wouldn't have grown to be the classical pianist I am today. I probably also wouldn't be the same dedicated clarinetist, jazz pianist, and musician. As much as Cynthia has taught me about music, she has taught me at least as much about life. Every week in the eight and a half years I've taken lessons with her, she's known exactly what I've needed in my lesson, whether that is help on a tricky section, feedback on a polished piece, or just time to talk and words of comfort. For not only has Cynthia been the best music teacher I could ask for, she has also grown to be a mentor and a friend. So now, even as my senior year is drawing to a close and I'm looking towards the future, it's hard to imagine a time after lessons with Cynthia.

Amy Morsman

Amy Morsman

Parent

Cynthia makes piano lessons fun for both of our children. She respects them as individuals with their own interests, concerns, and musical styles. The Suzuki repertoire remains an essential component of their instruction, but Cynthia also employs her deep knowledge of piano music to help them venture far beyond the Suzuki books. This broader range gives our children a challenge and an appreciation for a more diverse musical experience. Her calm demeanor is assuring; her giggle is infectious. And no matter how old they get, our kids will never tire of the laughter-inducing exercises that Cynthia employs to keep them focused at the keyboard. We are so pleased to have her in the life of our family.

Sonja Burrows

Sonja Burrows

Parent

One of Cynthia’s greatest gifts to her piano students is her unswerving belief in each of them as a true musician. She sees the musical genius within her students, and they in turn rise to her belief in them by bringing out their unique talents to the best of their abilities. Her students are among the best I have encountered in my life of witnessing great musicians. I have observed Cynthia undergo this process with my own children, and have been inspired to see what she has enabled each of them to do both as musicians and as people. By meeting them where they are, rather than enforcing them to adhere to a strict learning regime, Cynthia has given my children the chance to lead the way and to embrace their own musical discoveries... a practice which makes for lifelong joyful music-making. When it is time to choose a new piece to work on, I have been inspired at the time she spends carefully working to select pieces that students themselves love and want to play; this is critical to their enjoyment of music as well as to their continuation as musicians. Our family is so grateful for Cynthia’s presence in our musical lives.

Kristin Bolton

Kristin Bolton

Parent

Cynthia is the kind of piano teacher I never knew existed. She is a fantastic musician: soloist, chamber player, and accompanist. This is an important part of her teaching, because she teaches her students how to play musically. She wants them to feel and hear the music. As well as see the music notated on the page, she asks them to express the music that is within them. When they can do that, they want to keep playing. I've seen Ben grow so much as a musician and finding his inner expression in all the styles of music he plays and all the instruments he plays because his training with her has included the development of his own musical sensibility. Cynthia is also a thoughtful, creative, fun teacher. She pays attention to different students' learning styles; she accomodates and challenges them. Her playfulness keeps the lessons light and builds trust and positive regard; it also allows her to challenge or correct students without them feeling bad. They know she's on their side. She helps them build technique in a pedagogically rigorous way without the kids realizing it. She also works really hard to keep the kids interested in playing piano by helping them find pieces they want to play that will help them continue to build skills. Ben got disinterested in classical music a few years ago, so Cynthia encouraged him to play ragtime. Scott Joplin was a great challenge, and led him back to Debussy and Gershwin, among others. She's also really delightful to be with. She's kind and direct; gracious and humble, perceptive and accepting. This makes it easy to sort out some of the inevitable challenges that come with parenting kids taking music lessons. She takes on all her students as well rounded musicians and people, and takes pride in their accomplishments at the piano and beyond it. She connects families in her studio so that the kids and parents know that they are part of a greater community. Ben sees himself continuing to study with her through high school. He has a bond with her that is important to who he is as he matures as a person as well as a musician. Cynthia is a wonderful person, a great musician and a fantastic teacher. With that amazing combination of strengths, she's able to help each of her students express their own musicality, playing music they enjoy. I feel so fortunate for Ben to have worked with her for 8 years, and for him to look forward to working with her for 4 more.

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