Reuben Vincent

Reuben Vincent

Reuben Vincent is a freelance musician working as a composer, producer and private music teacher, based from his purpose built recording studio in Bagillt, Flintshire, North Wales, UK. His main instrument is the piano although he is also known for a "mean" solo on the Kazoo!!!

Someone once said that “the most important word in the English language is a person’s name!” These profound words underline the importance of properly using the names of our music students. The first step in developing any relationship with another human is to learn their name. Our name is the means to identify us from the crowd. It becomes part of our personality. It always impresses me when someone I don’t know too well, remembers and calls me by my forename. To me, this says a lot about them as a person. Why! All of us parents have spent much time agonising over what to call our children, it’s important that that effort should not be wasted!!! But isn’t this obvious?

Let me tell you about one of my  [···]

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How do you get your student to be self motivated and to enjoy practicing their song? Harder still, how do you encourage them to play their pieces with musical feeling, especially if the student is a young child, a distracted teenager or a busy adult? I have learnt that they need to make an emotional connection with their piece. But how do you make possible the sometimes seemingly impossible? Easy! Let me share some of my tried and tested methods for accessing the ‘Story Behind the Song.’

1 Personal responsibility

Wherever possible, I let the student choose their next piece! Sometimes, if I have a certain technique in mind that needs developing, I will offer them a choice between two or three songs that I know will help them in that endeavour. Importantly, this will also make them feel in charge by choosing the final piece. Because THEY are deciding, they are more likely to succeed because they have taken personal responsibility for some of their learning decisions.

2 Inspiration

I like to give them a personal performance of their chosen piece to show them simply what a great composition they have chosen and how much FUN their piece is for ME. I ask them to sit in my chair where I can maintain good eye contact with  [···]

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