ABC Academy of Music

ABC Academy of Music

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Natalia Soltes2021-08-04T04:40:26-04:00

Project Description

B. Mus. (UofT)
M. Ed. (OISE UofT) 
in-progress

Natalia is a pianist with many years of teaching and performance experience. Her teaching interests include, elementary music methods, multimodal approaches to learning and making music, and improvisation. Natalia has participated in the World Music Ensemble program at the University of Toronto where she performed with a Balinese Gamelan and Klezmer ensemble. She has also been involved with community music programs and has volunteered as a piano teacher at after-school children’s music programs.

Natalia received her Bachelor of Music from the University of Toronto where she studied piano with Lynda Metelsky. Natalia is currently in her second year of the Master of Teaching program at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education. She is also taking piano pedagogy lessons at the Royal Conservatory of Music and working towards getting a certificate in Elementary Piano Pedagogy.

Natalia believes in a flexible manner of instruction, and is attentive and responsive to each learner. Regardless of musical background, skill level, or artistic goal, she aims to help students develop the skills and knowledge they need to explore their own connection to music. Natalia’s areas of specialty include piano, music history and theory, and the Orff Approach, which combines music, movement, speech, and drama.

Get to know Natalia…

Hobbies: Reading, embroidery, and colouring

Musical influences: Right now, I am listening to Bill Evans, Beethoven sonatas, and different Spanish composers like, Joaquín Turina (his chamber music) and Isaac Albéniz.

Favourite food: Schnitzel

Least favourite food: Grits?

Favourite music: Slovak folk music

Favourite song: Takin’ It to the Streets – The Doobie Brothers

Favourite movie: The Little Mermaid, Pulp Fiction, and The Sound of Music

Favourite movie music: The Sound of Music

Favourite musical theatre/opera: Saint François d’Assise – Olivier Messiaen

Best quote from your teacher: “Here’s your checklist: put the music first. And from now on, you need to lean back and check your right elbow looseness.”

Favourite quote: “Just tell yourself, Duckie, you’re really quite lucky!” – Dr. Seuss, Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?

Favourite book: “Green Grass, Running Water” – Thomas King

Best thing about teaching at ABC: The wonderful and talented students and teachers!

Latest Homework from Natalia

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Ruby

Theory/Technical:

  • Vandendool: pp. 16-17
  • Theory: please finish up “Sailing Melodies”! and take a look at page 5 which is all about slurs and ties.

Repertoire:

Sailing in the Sun – this week, continue to try to add your dynamics (definitions for p, mf, and f in your book). Also, while you play, watch out for skips and step in your L.H. and when going from R.H. to L.H. so you’re not skipping when you’re supposed to be stepping!

Ferris Wheel – Great job clapping through the rhythm in your lesson! Next step, learning the notes. Similar to instructions for your piece “Sailing in the Sun”, watch out for steps and skips especially when alternating/switch between L.H. and R.H. (between treble clef and bass clef). Also, keep practicing your rhythm by counting aloud when you play. You are very good at this!

Challenge for this week: Take note of your dynamics. Can you try playing through Ferris Wheel with dynamics?

Eliana

Theory/technical:

Cora Ahrens – B.C. book: pp. 20-21; T.C. book: p. 21

Hanon: Better job relaxing/releasing your elbow tension. Make a mental note to release your elbows. Also, don’t “punch out” finger 5 note in dynamics exercise. Less fun for you, but sounds better when you cresc. and decres. and slightly pull back on finger 5 volume/grip. The real dynamic pull happens on fingers 2-3 (and 4). This week’s exercise is all about rhythm! Remember tri-pl-et. Same things apply as last week. Loose elbow, pivot out when playing fingers 4 and 5 to keep finger 5 from flying up.

Repertoire:

Maple Leaf Rag – Done! I love hearing you play this piece! Keep reviewing it. Maybe we can use it for a recital this year. 2 things: look out for accents (now highlighted) on downbeats in mm. 3 and 5. Also p to mf crescendo mm. 5-7. Anticipate this better!

In the Hall of the Mountain King – R.H.: really need to slow your practice down and make sure you are working on staccato evenness and playing all accents indicated in your music. This week, learn L.H. (whole piece) and watch out for finger numbers.

New piece! Danse Macabre – This week, H.S. first 2 pages. H.T. mm. 9-25 to get a feel for uneven melodic phrasing.

Happy practicing!

*Make sure you’re setting aside at least 10-15 minutes every day to practice!

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