Piano Lessons in Indianapolis
Sophia Gorlin has taught piano lessons in Indianapolis since her immigration to the United States in 1993. Her motto, “quality over quantity,” encapsulates her teaching approach. In her piano lessons, Mrs. Gorlin gives each student the unique materials and instruction he or she needs based on her assessment of the student’s understanding and abilities.
Mrs. Gorlin believes that piano playing is primarily "brain work"—not just finger work—and that the musical language is largely analogous to verbal language (phrasing), logic (thematic development), and mathematics (counting, square structures). Developing a student’s ability to efficiently read and understand the musical language is an essential ingredient of successful piano instruction and is therefore a central focus of Mrs. Gorlin’s teaching method.
- develop professional piano technique through targeted warm-up exercises (scales, arpeggios, etc.);
- instill knowledge of music theory and terminology;
- develop sight/quick-reading skills through exercises supported by music theory knowledge;
- develop the student’s musical ear and memory through ear training exercises (as time permits); and
- familiarize the student with musical styles, forms and genres through extensive analysis of performed musical works (intermediate and advanced levels).
Through the above, students will be better able to understand and interpret musical works—to play not just notes, but music.
Mrs. Gorlin has developed unique materials over the course of her years teaching piano to American students. Click below for samples of the custom materials made available to her students.
Samples require Adobe Reader.
- recordings (CDs, DVDs) of performances by renowned pianists;
- piano methods, music theory, terminology, and ear training materials—including many unique materials not available elsewhere;
- dictionaries of musical terms and encyclopedias of music;
- anthologies of multi-level repertoire; and
- reading materials about musical styles, composers, and musical works.
- warm-up exercises (scales, arpeggios, chords—starting with Level 2) to develop technique;
- listening exercises (as time permits) to develop musical ear;
- working together—student-teacher—on the current repertoire (central focus); and
- working on theory materials appropriate to the student’s level. From the early grades onward, students are assigned written theory materials created by the instructor. Students are required to read the concepts, to complete the exercises, and to analyze and play the musical excerpts included in the theory lessons. The instructor makes every effort to connect theory work with piano performance. (For young students, parental assistance is greatly appreciated!)
Recommendations for successful piano study:
- Students should have access to a well-tuned acoustic piano at home for practice.
- Parental support and participation are strongly encouraged, particularly for beginners who may have difficulty adjusting to the requirements of musical training.
- Regular lessons and regular practice between lessons will facilitate steady improvement.
- Practicing classical repertoire will enable the steady development of professional piano technique.
- Practicing original arrangements of repertoire rather than simplified arrangements will enable more rapid progress.
- After the first year of study, students are strongly encouraged to participate in piano recitals and competitions in order to gain experience in stage performance.
- Students are encouraged to listen to recordings and, from time to time, attend public concerts, master classes, and other musical events in order to develop musical listening experience.
If students and their parents heed the above recommendations, quick and steady progress is guaranteed.« back to top