Music instructor enhances studio

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  • Solomon Honeywell, 4, of Vernon practices writing quarter notes and half notes on my sliding glass doors, to reinforce his learning to differentiate between the two kinds of notes.

VERNON — Cherwyn Ambuter, a piano and sight-singing teacher in Vernon, announces new enhancements to the studio for this upcoming year.

In addition to instruction, concert field trips, and recitals, the studio will be adding a new event: a piano master class in the spring taught by a wonderful teacher, Joan Bujacich, past president of the statewide Music Educators Assn. of New Jersey. An animated, fun, positive and encouraging teacher, Ms. Bujacich will bring perspective to Ambuter’s students and they will be able to share in the special experience of playing for a new teacher and receiving helpful input on their playing.

An experienced regular performer in rock, jazz, and classical music, she will bring all of this to bear upon the varied pieces brought in by the students.

Additionally, Ambuter has adopted a new curriculum, the Royal Conservatory Method originating from the conservatory in Toronto, which is internationally renowned and utilized. This curriculum is carefully sequenced and includes classical, jazz, and popular music but all with continuous reinforcement of the new concepts across all the genres. A significant standout feature of the RCM method is the opportunity to take RCM exams (optional) towards which students may work. Some students are motivated by needing to pass exams. There are several RCM exam centers in New Jersey. The method offers tremendous gains, though, for any student using it, regardless of whether they opt to take the exams. Ambuter was thoroughly impressed with the consistently high-level playing of RCM students she heard in course of adjudicating for the annual MEA-NJ auditions.

The studio is also adding Jon George’s all-classical curriculum, Artistry at the Piano, for those students and families who know they would like to study exclusively classical music. Rapid progress can be made by the student willing to put in the time at home with this method.

Over the summer, the studio added the Faber method, also very favorable at MEA auditions, and a new method for the young beginner, Piano Safari, which incorporates a “Suzuki”-like approach by presenting rote pieces at the beginning for an organic connection to the instrument right from the beginning. Notation-reading comes a bit later in the sequence. Animal shapes and gestures “teach” technical skills in a way the young child can grasp. Mrs. Ambuter’s young students reinforce concepts by jumping rhythms on the mini-trampoline, drawing rhythm notes on the glass doors with window markers, using Orff instruments, and other engaging methods. Mrs. Ambuter’s current piano students range from 4-75 years in age. Piano study for adults yields brain benefits and also reduces stress, potentially adding to health and definitely to the enjoyment of life.

Mrs. Ambuter also teaches sight-singing (how to read music for singers) with the Juilliard Pre-College curricula and also with the curriculum used successfully at Vernon Twp. High School in the choral program. Singers in church choirs who would like to read music, or singers aspiring to audition for college vocal programs or auditions are warmly invited to contact Mrs. Ambuter to solidify their confidence and ability to know how to sing the correct pitches and rhythms. Vocal coaching also offered for singers on tight deadlines. For more information, see

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