Ariadna Kryazheva - violin, voice, Alexander technique teacher
Ariadna Kryazheva is a performer immersed in both classical and jazz music. Her first steps as a musician started at the age of 5 at the Glazunov School of Music in St.-Petersburg, Russia. Violin became her first instrument, piano joined as a secondary when she was 7.
Throughout her own education process, Ariadna encountered many physical and psychological challenges, which lead to her becoming deeply passionate about compassionate music education based on mind-body wellness. Ariadna continues to learn and develop ways to connect her students with themselves and their creativity.
Ariadna graduated from the Lamont School of Music at the University of Denver as a classical violinist and a jazz vocalist with a double Bachelor of Music degree. After years of classical and jazz training she is now a composer, arranger, lyricist, and a free improviser, still playing trumpet and piano in addition to violin and singing.
Ariadna is an AmSAT certified Alexander Technique teacher. She completed the 1600-hour training over the course of three years at the Riverside Initiative For The Alexander Technique directed by Nanette Walsh.
In addition, Ariadna completed the three levels of Somatic Voicework™training with Jeanette LoVetri and applies the principles of the work in her teaching.
David Harewood - piano, jazz improvisation, music theory teacher
David Harewood was born and raised in New York City. He attended the famous Manhattan high school of Music and Art, where upon he began playing the piano in his senior year at the age of 19. After a year at Northwestern University, he spent the summer at the Berklee School of Music followed by the Mannes College of Music and then Queens College to see if playing catch-up in the competitive world of music was possible given his late start to the piano. After spending 10 years as a church musician and playing with various jazz and pop artists during that period, the answer to that question was a resounding yes! David graduated from the Lamont School of Music at the University of Denver on a full scholarship and was awarded a degree in Jazz Studies. He also immersed himself in studying the classical repertoire. He studied classical piano with Alice Rybak, jazz piano with Eric Gunnison, and composition with Bill Hill. Upon graduation, David traveled to Villard de Lans, France and performed at the jazz festival there with vocalist Heidi Schmidt. David also performed in Sopot, Poland with Ralph Alessi, Mark Helias, Tyshawn Sorey and Ravi Coltrane. David received his Graduate Degree in Piano Performance and Composition at the Longy School of Music at Bard College.
David has taught piano to all ages since 1999 and is a sought after teacher.
Together David and Ariadna started a music program at the Easton Art Center in Easton, CT, and were on the faculty at the Long Ridge Music Center in Stamford, CT from 2015-2018.
Alexander Dillon - drums, percussion teacher
Alex Dillon is a Boston based jazz drummer, percussionist, composer and multi-instrumentalist with a practice that centers on live performance in settings both formal and casual. His teaching approach focuses on building up good fundamental drumming technique in a way that is fun and approachable for musicians of all skill ranges. In lessons Alex primarily works on establishing good fundamental snare drum technique, rudiments, reading exercises, and listening. He always encourages input from students or parents regarding specific goals or ideas in terms of tailoring a more customized lesson plan.
Throughout his music career Alex have studied with great teachers like Neal Smith, Bob Gulotti, Dave Zygmunt, John Piefer and Greg Strohman. He currently holds a BA in East Asian Studies from Dickinson College and an MM in Jazz and Contemporary Music from the Longy School of Music.
Patrick Kracunas is a multi-instrumentalist, composer & educator. Born in Mobile, Alabama Patrick began his musical training at age 7. After his family relocated to Massachusetts he continued his studies with Berklee professors and at the NEC prep program. This led him to The University of North Texas on scholarship, where he received a bachelor of music in jazz studies. Currently, Patrick can be seen performing in various groups or solo in a range of genres around Boston, MA.
Music is a fun and rewarding endeavor. However, playing an instrument is complex and requires commitment and proper instruction. In the United States it is common practice to involve children in multiple extracurricular activities at once to see which strikes their interest and awakens their talents. They sign up for once a week music lessons somewhere between karate, pottery, and dance, and often time these lessons are merely half an hour long. Unlike those other activities music lessons require daily practice at home as well as the understanding of the basics of music theory. The student is learning a whole new language along with the physical aspects of playing an instrument (technique).
Mindfulness is a core component of our work. Teaching mind-body awareness and being present in the moment is crucial in the fast-paced modern world. It can be overwhelming to try and internalize music theory and instrumental technique in one short lesson. We create a comprehensive course to aid in reading notation, ear training, and self-expression, applying the principles of Alexander Technique and Somatic Voicework™ in our teaching.
Playing an instrument is all about connecting the dots between the senses. We train the brain to link the visual information (notation on the page) with kinesthetic information on the instrument (pressing down a key or a string), hear the sound it produces and mimic the pitch with your voice. Most people think that singing has nothing to do with playing piano or violin, but it is crucial to be able to sing in tune the notes you are playing. String instruments such as violin, viola, cello, and bass have no keys or frets. You have to know exactly where the notes are by ear. If you can’t sing it, you can’t play it.
Being "tone-deaf" is a myth, unless you have an underlying condition preventing you from hearing sound. Almost anyonecan be trained to hear and reproduce pitch.
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