JKM welcomes back Ai Yuki Sato to the Music School!


Ai is a very capable pianist, teacher, and accompanist with many years of experience teaching all levels of piano from young beginners to community college students. She endeavors to bring her students to a high level of proficiency while keeping lessons fun and upbeat.

She especially enjoys teaching children. Her lessons incorporate piano repertoire, ear- training and theory. She also particularly enjoys teaching duets and music for two pianos. She is familiar with multiple teaching methods.

Education: Ai holds a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance, a Master of Music in Piano Performance and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, from Indiana University, IN.

Students perform in recitals, Spring Festival, Sonatina Festival and competitions.

Ai is available to begin lessons on March 10.

Mason & Hamlin Model A – Piano Review

Mason & Hamlin Model A

There is nothing as elegant or beautiful as the sight and sound of a grand piano.  The notes float upon the air reaching everyone’s ears.  Looking upon a grand piano makes you realize how beautiful the music is going to be that comes from the keys.  Unfortunately many people are unable to make the room for a grand piano.  They just don’t have the space required to fit a grand piano into the room they want.

Mason Hamlin Model A SoundboardThe Mason & Hamlin Model A piano came from a design by Richard Gertz, one of the 19th and 20th Century’s premiere piano designers. Gertz was trained by some of the great piano engineers at the Bösendorfer and Blüthner factories where he worked on the design and build of the modern Steinway pianos. He then moved on to design and build his own creation: the Mason & Hamlin piano.

The tonal similarities between Mason & Hamlin and Steinway pianos are no accident. In some ways, Gertz took an world-class school of thought and advanced it with his new creation at Mason & Hamlin. It is little wonder that Mason & Hamlin have a reputation for being “the poor man’s Steinway” and some even believe them to be more durable. The pianos are handcrafted in Haverhill, Massachusetts to the highest standards in the industry with materials and parts that we find to be equal or superior to the materials and parts found in much higher-priced pianos .

The Model A piano that is made by Mason & Hamlin is the grand piano for people with limited space.  It is a baby grand with the dimensions needed to fit into anyone’s home with ease.


Made with the professional in mind, the Model A Piano is perfect for any purpose – whether it is instruction or personal use.  Due to new innovations in piano design and construction, the tone of this piano is very close to the depth that you find on larger grand pianos.  Nothing is lost because of the size.  It is perfect for homes, conservatories and musical institutions.

It is due to the innovations of today that such rich sound can come from a small piano.  With dimensions of 5ft 8 ½ in in length and a width of 56.12 inches, this piano is of small stature no doubt but it is made of a hard rock maple – so it will last for generations.  The grace and beauty of the piano are just the beginning.

You can get the finish to match any décor you have in your home.  Whether mahogany, walnut or Brazilian rosewood is your favorite, it is available.  There are also such finishes as ebony in both satin and high polish.

For pricing or more information on the Mason & Hamlin Model A, click here.

Also, from time to time we happen upon very beautiful Used (and professional restored) Mason & Hamlins, like this one. So always be on the lookout on our used pianos page.

Improving Children’s Literacy through Music Teaching

Excerpt taken from a January 28th, 2013 article by the Institute of Education, University of London:

The New London Orchestra’s flagship education project Literacy through Music is aiming to improve primary school teachers’ confidence and skills in using music in the classroom, and provide them with methods and activities that they can use to support literacy development.


The scheme, now in its second full year, is being run by the New London Orchestra, which provided in-service training (Inset) for teachers. Sessions involving the teaching of music and literacy activities took place in 30 primary schools in the London Borough of Newham, involving around 650 teachers during 2011- 2012.


The previous (first) year’s scheme evaluation (available at http://www.imerc.org) had found that the children taking part in the scheme had significantly improved their reading abilities compared to those in control groups. This positive finding led to the NLO organising the professional development programme that built on the evaluation of the first year.


Literacy through Music is made possible through a donation to the New London Orchestra from the JPMorgan Chase Foundation.


Researchers from the Institute of Education carried out a thorough evaluation of the latest phase of the programme by surveying the teachers who took part.

Professor Graham Welch, who led the research, said:


“The New London Orchestra’s Literacy through Music project is demonstrating the power of music to enhance the quality of children’s learning in other areas of development. A key design feature is the close partnership and teamwork exhibited by NLO musicians, teachers and teaching assistants. The outcomes of the initiative are very positive”.

JKM Pianos Abound on Inauguration Day

Inauguration Day Piano

List of some of our pianos used on Inauguration Day, who played them, and where they were used:

  • Yamaha DS4 – played by Ben Folds at the National Day of Service on the National Mall
  • Yamaha DC3 – played by John Legend at the National Portrait Gallery for Generation  Now Party
  • Yamaha DC3 – played by John Legend and Cyndi Lauper at the Italian Embassy for the DNC Committee Brunch
  • Yamaha DGB1K E3 Classic – played by Stevie Wonder at the National Building Museum for the Inaugural Candlelight Celebration
  • Yamaha DGB1K E3 Classic – played by Katy Perry’s Band at the Convention Center
  • Yamaha DC3 – played by Jamie Foxx at the Convention Center
  • Yamaha DS6 – played by Alicia Keys at the Commander-in-Chief Ball at the Convention Center

Elton John, Jordan Kitt’s Music and Yamaha’s 125th Anniversary


Jordan Kitt’s was just honored with front row seats at Yamaha’s 125th Anniversary Celebration at Disneyland’s Hyperion Theater in Anaheim, CA. This concert featured performances by, among others, Michael McDonald, Toto, Sarah McLachlan and the Rocket Man himself, seen here with two familiar faces in the background (Jordan Kitt’s President Chris Syllaba center left & CFO Ray Fugere far right). Sir Elton performed on one of his custom Yamaha midi-grands, with his performance being transmitted live, note by note, through numerous Yamaha Disklavier grands in 19 different countries simultaneously! Combined with the 70-piece back-up orchestra transmitted via live video/audio feed, it was the world’s first such performance beamed live around the planet.

Jordan Kitts Music Awards Grants to Four MSMTA Teachers

MSMTA AwardOn Saturday evening, January 12 , 2013, at the MSMTA Conference held at the University of Maryland Clarice Smith Center for the Performing Arts, Jordan Kitts Music awarded four MSMTA teachers with the William J. McCormick, Jr. Grants in the amount of $400. The 2013 winners are: Susan Roberts, Linda Kazmarek, Carole Gauthier, and Bok Hwa Kim.

Martha Blakely, NCTM, Artist-in-Residence and Manager of the Jordan Kitts Music School Beltsville, and also a past MSMTA Vice-President, presented the four awards at the MSMTA Gala Concert.

William J. McCormick, Jr. began the teacher grant award program more than 23 years ago. Mr. McCormick believed that not only was education an important part of the business of piano sales, but also working with and helping local area teachers. Following in the tradition of William J. McCormick, Jr., co-owners of Jordan Kitts Music, Chris Syllaba and Ray Fugere are continuing the tradition of awarding teacher grants on a yearly basis.

Jordan Kitt’s in the Washington Post


Our Music school was recognized by the Washington Post for celebrating a century of musical arts education!

Except below:

Melissa McMahon of Silver Springs is teaching Sofia Garcia, 9, how to count. Sofia’s hot pink Chuck Taylors swing back and forth as she follows along in the workbook. The baby grand Yamaha piano is quiet for a few minutes while McMahon teaches Sofia about the proper piano finger form. Sofia used only one hand to stroke the keys; the other was in her lap, as if it was weighed down by her metal gray bracelet.

“I want them to establish good technique, that starts with curving your fingers,” McMahon said. “If you form the right habits in the first place, then you won’t have to worry about breaking bad habits further down the line.”

Music teachers such as McMahon have become a valuable part of Jordan Kitt’s Music as the company celebrates its centennial with a greater attention on music education. Founded in 1912 as Jordan Piano Company by Arthur Jordan and Homer L. Kitt, the two businessmen established a chain of piano stores that rented and sold pianos to organizations such as the White House, the Kennedy Center, and the National Symphony Orchestra.

“Education is something that has always been involved in the company”, said Chris Syllaba, president and chief executive of Jordan Kitt’s Music. “We like teaching kids music. It’s obviously important to us that education reaches the children.”


Yamaha E3 Piano Overview by Sue Downs

Teacher Spotlight: Olga Boeva

Olga Boeva is our featured teacher of the month! She heads up the teaching staff at Jordan Kitts Music School in Sterling, located on Route 7 in the Sugarland Crossing shopping center. Olga has been teaching full time with Jordan Kitts Music since 2003, offering both group and private lessons. Her studio operates 7 days a week.

Her musical training at the University of St. Petersburg in Russia helped develop her broad background in music education. She is able to offer lessons in piano, violin, beginning and intermediate guitar, and will tutor children on the recorder. She is our certified Yamaha teaching specialist at the Sterling location, where she offers Junior Music Course, an incomparable foundation for musical study on any instrument. Four and five year old beginners experience singing, music reading and writing, playing piano, ear training and creating music.

Olga has a remarkable ability to communicate with children and engage them in the learning process. When asked what she loves about teaching, she will say the joy lies in building relationships. She takes great pleasure in watching young people grow and blossom in their musical abilities.

Now is the time to enroll in Junior Music Course with Ms. Olga for the spring semester. Class begins in February. Enrollment is on line. Follow the link at www.jordankittsmusic.com/lessons

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.