PIANO LESSONS ~ COMPOSITION STUDIES
THEORY TUTORING ~ PERFORMANCE EVALUATIONS
MUSIC LESSONS WITH
Beginners - Advanced • Children and Adults
Learn the basics of reading and playing music
while building a solid technical foundation
Contact Matt for a (free) Evaluation lesson
to begin your musical journey.
Matt makes his living as a musician by utilizing his various musical skills. Teaching up-and-coming musicians is one skill he quite enjoys. Having previously taught in the University and Performing Arts School settings, he now teaches primarily from his Cooper City studio and worldwide through ONLINE LESSONS.
Matt teaches private one-on-one lessons in piano, composition, theory and the art of notation/engraving. Having taught private lessons since 1977, Matt's teaching encompasses the classical, jazz and popular music literature. From beginners to advanced, he uses a multiple-key approach, as well as traditional middle-C method books.
Matt says: “My philosophy of teaching music embraces the classical literature, but is more inclusive of other styles as well—jazz, popular, gospel, etc. I like to teach my students to be ‘functional’ musicians. It is important that the student not only learn to read the written language of music, but also that they not be limited by it. I teach chordal understanding in whatever literature we’re working on. In addition, learning to play EXACTLY what’s written is then supplemented by ADDING notes or rhythms.”
WHY STUDY WITH MATT?
There are so many piano teachers...
why should you trust your
musical education to Matt?
MATT BEGAN MUSICAL STUDIES IN 1967
Studying under his tutelage allows students to benefit from the wealth of his knowledge. His instruction draws from a wide range of musical expertise, as a pianist • composer • arranger • engraver • accompanist • adjudicator • recording artist • church music director • vocal choir conductor • worship band leader • handbell choir director • studio musician • concert promoter • publisher, etc.
Being such a versatile and organized musician, Matt brings more than simply learning to play the piano to the teaching experience—he also helps students see the bigger musical picture, including real world applications with their music.
Additionally, Matt offers several unique areas of study:
Many students enrolled in high school or college level courses seek out Matt’s help for their classes in:
~ Ear Training
~ Harmonic Analysis
~ Part Writing
~ Rhythmic Understanding
Matt’s approach in explaining not only the technical stuff, but also what’s REALLY going on has proven beneficial to many students through the years. Let Matt help you in your understanding and application in these areas.
CONTEMPORARY CHRISTIAN MUSIC
Most current Contemporary Christian music is written in a “lead sheet” format… which leaves many traditionally trained musicians unclear how to utilize the score.
As Director of Music Ministries, Matt leads the church Worship Band from the keyboard, playing from those lead sheets. Matt teaches students how to translate the minimally outlined scores into functional playing.
Whether playing with a Worship Band or leading these songs from a keyboard or piano, the style of playing is different. Let Matt help train you in this skill set.
The art of playing traditional hymns for church services is a valuable skill set to develop. As a preacher’s kid, Matt grew up playing hymns for church.
Matt now teaches students how to not just read and play the four part harmony written in a hymnal, but to see and embellish the chords being used. This will lead to “thickening up” the harmonies…helping to lead the congregational singing.
Eventually, seeing and thinking the chords will lead to a greater ability to do “fills”…then secondary melodic lines…and, eventually much more comfort to “improvise” on top of the written notes.
TEACHING OLDER ADULTS
Students who fall into the more “mature” category have a special opportunity to finally learn to play the piano and play the songs they want to learn.
Many parents and grandparents of younger students say, “I wish I hadn't stopped lessons when I was a kid” or “I’ve always wanted to learn to play.” Thankfully, learning to play the piano is not an age-related skill.
Matt teaches students of ALL ages, so consider letting him help YOU fulfill your lifelong dream!
RECREATIONAL MUSIC MAKING
Students of all ages can explore music lessons as more of a hobbyist...with less emphasis on performance...often called “Recreational Music Making.” Placing an emphasis on personal goals and literature, the benefits often improve their quality of life by building self-esteem, reducing loneliness and encouraging creative expression.
Consider letting Matt guide you fulfill your lifelong dream of playing the piano!
PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS include:
~ Nationally Certified Teacher of Music [NCTM]
~ Music Teacher’s National Association [MTNA]
~ Florida State Music Teacher’s Association [FSMTA]
~ Broward County Music Teacher’s Association [BCMTA]
~ American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers [ASCAP]
My teaching philosophy and educational goals for my music students has evolved considerably since I began in 1977. While each student’s preferred learning style is embraced and utilized—i.e., visual, auditory or kinesthetic—focus is also given to the development and combination of a variety of learning characteristics, as further aids to learn and play more musically.
My global educational goal for my students is to teach and empower them to learn for themselves. I aim to create new Masters—musicians that are knowledgeable and functional—rather than simple Followers who are forever dependent on musical assistance.
I believe it is important that students not only learn to read the written notational language of music, but also that they not be limited by it. Therefore, I teach chordal and rhythmic understanding in whatever literature we're working on. Additionally, after learning to play the score exactly as written, I teach students how to supplement the music by adding notes and changing up the rhythms.
With these goals in mind, I embrace the traditional Classical literature, but am also inclusive of other styles as well—i.e., Popular, Jazz, Gospel, etc. Students are encouraged to bring in pieces they want to learn, thus sharing in the ownership of the literature selected for study.
I teach piano, composition, theory and the art of music notation/engraving. While I enjoy working with my advanced students, I also delight in introducing beginners to the joys of musical study. A multiple-key approach for beginning students is my preference, but I often utilize the traditional middle-C method books as well.
In order to develop artistic and expressive performance skills, students are expected to practice daily—spending as much time as is necessary to conquer their weekly musical goals and assignments. Since most students are involved with multiple extracurricular activities—and sufficient practice time is hard to come by—they are introduced to the concept of clearly defined and deliberate practice in order to meet their short and long term goals. While the skill will be developed and honed within a musical context, it should prove most beneficial throughout the student’s lifetime.
By gifting students with musical skills and understanding, they learn how to learn any music they want, thus providing a lifetime of enjoyment in making music.
Matt Johnson is a dynamic, classically trained pianist who received his Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance from Oklahoma Baptist University. As a graduate student at New England Conservatory of Music, he formally expanded his talents in the area of composition. Studying under William Thomas McKinley, he received his Master of Music degree in Jazz Studies and Composition with a Distinction in Performance.
A prolific writer and performer, Matt has performed extensively in venues from Boston to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. His music is Neo-Romantic, employing a unique blend of contemporary jazz, new age, popular and classical elements.
Matt’s complete discography of original compositions (and a few arrangements) may be found here or on the MusicBrainz database.
Additionally, Matt has composed and arranged for many mediums. His choral, vocal, instrumental, handbell and piano scores are available as free PDF downloads from his site.
Matt has been studying/playing the piano since the age of six…there’s a picture of him practicing on the cover of his Origins recording. His classical training has included numerous piano performance competitions and orchestral appearances.
Matt is a writer member of A.S.C.A.P. and his publishing company, Dolce & Nuit Productions, is a publisher member as well.
Born in Sherman, Texas, Matt currently resides in Florida. His versatility allows him to teach piano, theory and composition...play piano, organ and keyboards for both Contemporary and Traditional services at his local church...as well as accompany and adjudicate music festivals and competitions.
Additional Wikipedia information.
Welcome to the Matt Johnson Music Studio, featuring private one-on-one instruction for piano, keyboard, composition, theory and music notation/engraving. Lessons take place in my sunny South Florida studio location or ONLINE LESSONS are available. The following will serve as a basic guideline during our work together. If you ever have questions, please speak with me directly to avoid miscommunications.
You may always reach me at: MattJohnsonMusicStudio@gmail.com
Once accepted into the Studio, I will reserve a mutually agreed upon lesson time for you for the entire Session. I use a two Session system…School Session and Summer Session…with breaks in-between Sessions and during the December holidays.
In fairness to all students, lessons begin and end on time. Please ARRIVE no earlier than five (5) minutes before your lesson time. Upon arrival, please knock and enter quietly, take off your shoes, silence your phones, wash your hands and sit on the front bench until your lesson. PARK in the driveway or around the cul-de-sac, making sure to not block another driveway. Do not park on the street immediately in front of the house, since that creates a bottleneck situation for the neighbors. Also, please keep your fingernails short by cutting them weekly…you play on the tips of your fingers!
You are responsible for the entire Session, which will be divided into monthly payments—due at the first lesson each month. I'll send an invoice at the end of each month that will be due the following week (first lesson of the month). Lessons are one hour each.
Missed lessons will not be made up. I reserve your lesson time in my teaching schedule, so please make it a priority to be there. If an advance conflict arises in your schedule, please let me know and I will try to swap lesson times with another student within the same week. Please remember that you are financially responsible for all scheduled lessons during a Session. If I should be absent due to illness or a professional commitment, students will be notified and appropriately credited.
Biannually, i.e., a Holiday Recital and an End-of-School Recital.
All music must be memorized and participation is mandatory.
Students should be prepared for each lesson, putting in as much practice time as needed to accomplish the assignments and musical goals set at each lesson.