Community Concert for Benjamin T. Rome School of Music

This was a community concert in our Rockville store last Saturday. Music
Theatre students from Catholic University of America’s Benjamin T. Rome
School of Music Theatre Division performed. These were 4 very talented
Juniors that performed various Broadway (and a few non-Broadway)
selections. I will send you the program separately, as well as some pics
from my cell phone.

Nikita Fitenko organized it for us. He is an international Yamaha
concert artist and on the piano faculty at Catholic. He is a big fan of
Yamaha and Jordan Kitt’s and has organized a community concert series
for us for the second year in a row.

Typically there are six concerts each year as a part of the series and they are held in the Rockville MD store. He is also co-founder of the Washington International Piano Festival (heading into it’s fifth year next year), which is becoming a very well known and well attended festival each year. It attracts participants from all around the world with top notch artists participating. This year that included Alex Kobrin, an internationally
acclaimed Yamaha artist from Columbus, GA.

Roland HPI7F Piano Review

Have you ever wanted to learn how to play the piano?   Is the answer a definite Yes?    Well, what if I told you that your piano can teach you how?  It’s true!   Whether you are a beginner, a hobby player, or a professional composer, the new Roland HPI7F is the perfect fit for you. The world has never seen a piano that can interact with the player on so many levels!

First and foremost, the Roland HPI7F Intelligent Piano is the most authentic digital piano music experience.  Roland’s Technology (they call it SuperNatural) captures the full expression range of a 9 foot Concert Grand Piano and the touch, tone and feel of the keys makes you feel like you’re performing on a Steinway at Carnegie Hall.  It will simply blow you away!  If you are a music reader, you may bring your own sheet music or use the HPI7’s built-in sheet music display, a huge 9 inch screen right on the music rack in front of you.  The piano has hundreds of built in songs that you can learn to play or you may download free music from the internet and learn to play virtually any song you like.

The Visual Lesson feature will allow you to learn music at your own pace and covers all the stages of education. Like a teacher, it grades your performance and gives you a score.  My six year old son has a blast trying to beat his latest high score and improved his rhythm and timing in the process. If you have a child that is learning how to play piano, they will love this feature!  Roland also takes the redundancy out of practice by including hundreds of instrumental sounds and rhythm options alongside the tick tock metronome.  If you are a student that needs to record your practice session, the HPI7F does that.  If you are a composer that writes music and records using multi track sequencing, the HPI7F will write your music and give you 16 tracks to score your masterpiece!   There is a USB thumb drive to save your work and print your music on any printer, or download new songs from the internet.  You can even burn a CD right on the piano and play your performance right in your car or home CD player.

If you love to sing or have a career aspiration as a professional or karaoke superstar, then hook up a microphone and enjoy!!  The HPI7F’s Karaoke feature has a way of bringing the

family together and creating some incredible memories.  When entertaining guests, just put on the automatic music and enjoy hours of uninterrupted splendor.

The Roland HPI7F is a unique piano that every piano player and music lover must have.  It’s incredible!!!

Benefits of a Music Education for Children

Perform a Google search on  “benefits of music education,” and you will find countless explanations of the societal and personal advantages to those students fortunate enough to learn about music in their youth.  However, I want to explain to you the top six reasons why I think a music education–specifically learning how to play the piano–should be part of every child’s education beginning at the age of six.

1)         Developing Coordination – The child who learns to play the piano is also developing fine motor skills, dexterity, and hand-eye coordination in the process.  This has been shown to enhance performance in other areas such as athletics.

2)         Increasing Concentration – Participating in a half-hour weekly lesson and practicing every day, a child is intensely focused on the complexities of rhythm, melody, harmony, technique, and theory.  This requires spatial reasoning, critical thinking, and creativity, which provide a rigorous mental workout!  The increased concentration often results in helping a student to study more effectively, resulting in better grades in school.

3)         Building Self-Esteem – There is such a quality as “talent” for playing the piano, but not every child is endowed with this precious gift.  However, making the effort to overcome the mental and physical challenges of each new lesson creates feelings of accomplishment and ongoing success, which long-term is building self-esteem.  The child who enters middle school years with a strong sense of self-worth fares far better in what can often be a hostile social environment.

4)        Acquiring a Well-Rounded Education – More and more, colleges must choose from an applicant pool of academic over-achievers with impressive SAT scores and GPAs over 4.0!  What makes one candidate more appealing than another of equal academic success is his/her well-roundedness.  Are they involved in their community?  Do they play sports?  Do they play at least one musical instrument?  In addition to the food pyramid steering us to optimal nutrition for our bodies, we must also remember to nourish our souls by feeding our children a healthy dose of the arts every day.

5)         Experiencing Future Math/Science Success – This one is a little tough to explain without getting a bit technical–and I am no neuroscientist–but the way I understand it, the grey matter in the brain of a six-year-old child is far more malleable than that of a child who is 16.  When spatial reasoning is developed at age six, as happens with the study of music, complex synapses (information transmitters) fire in the brain and forge pathways through the grey matter resulting in “hallways” or “channels” that can be used again later when that child is studying such complex subjects as advanced math and science.  If the 16-year-old has no prior pathways forged, the synapses have a more difficult job firing through the grey matter of the brain.  The bottom line as shown by research is that children who learn to play the piano at a young age perform better at high-level math and science later in life.

6)         My favorite reason:  Producing ENJOYMENT! – It is very important for children to have fun too!  It is joyful to make music.  The ability to play music fosters a deeper appreciation for listening to music of all kinds.  In this age of instant gratification, electronic gadgets, and countless media distractions, it is refreshing to find an activity in which great patience and persistence are required.  Playing a keyboard instrument carries forth a Western tradition dating back over 400 years!

Your child’s music education can begin with initiating  contact today along with the purchase or rental of a fine piano…  Allow us to utilize our experience and expertise in pianos sales to also guide you through that process.   We hope you’ll provide the gift of music for your child — it’s the gift that lasts a lifetime!