Author: Perez, Debra
Date published: February 1, 2010
Journal code: IAMT
* Recreational Music Making Handbook for Piano Teachers, by Brian Chung and Brenda Dillon. Alf ed Publishing Company, 2009. www.alfed.com; (818) 892-2452; 51 pp. $9.95
Both Brian Chung and Brenda Dillon have many years of experience working with music educators, piano dealers and piano manufactures. Their knowledge and experience, combined with others who are currently developing and implementing RMM programs, are compiled to answer the questions being posed by teachers interested in embracing this philosophy of teaching and learning.
The introduction and first chapter define and discuss The Philosophy of Recreational Music Making. Chapter 2 presents a teaching on how this philosophy is both similar and different from what is considered traditional piano instruction. From my experience as an RMM trainer and facilitator, the understanding and embracing of this philosophy is the first step in building a successful RMM program. This paradigm shift opens the door of musical experience for the millions of adults who love the piano and dream of incorporating music-making into their lifestyle.
The Getting Started chapter provides answers to the frequently asked questions: Where Should I Teach?, What Ages Should I Teach?, How Much Should I Charge? and similar concerns.
I can personally testify to the information in the chapters pertaining to group teaching techniques and teaching in a piano lab. My husband and I have been developing and implementing group programs for the adult hobbyist for years in our music stores. I have successfully used this information to teach and train both group teachers in our own music school and new RMM teachers around the country.
In Chapter 6, Brenda Dillon shares her personal experience and knowledge of how a RMM class can be conducted on two pianos. This approach is intended for venues that do not have multiple pianos.
This RMM Handbook will serve as a reference for the numerous teachers who understand and believe that every life needs music - not just piano students who aspire for mastery, but all human beings that need music to bring balance to their lives. And as we are experiencing with the success of our own RMM programs, this philosophy also applies to young adults, teens and children. - Reviewed by Debra Perez, McAllen, Texas
Reviewed by Debra Perez, Mc Allen, Texas