Information About Simon - Cowes tutor
My Music Experience involves over 40 years as a musician and teacher and I have recently used my skills to achieve the following:
• Teaching for the Isle of Wight Music Service as a peripatetic brass, keyboard and drum teacher
• Wider Opportunities group music classes of up to 40 children in Samba and Djembe drumming, brass & keyboards
• School KS2 curriculum music teaching at Northwood Primary School
• Private music tuition in brass, drums and keyboard
• Samba class tuition at schools such as Kitbridge and Downside on a private basis
• Specialist tuition and sessions with special needs pupils such as a Downs Syndrome sufferer on drums
• Music Director for Solent G&S Company, CAODS, Bembridge Little Theatre Company and others
• A regular horn player with the Isle of Wight Symphony Orchestra
• Part of a 6 piece Oompah band
• Conducting and training the Foundation Wind band at the Isle of Wight Music Centre
• A member of the island Concert Band
• Freelance work with The Cantata Choir, Ryde Chorus (including solo performing) and other groups
• Various rock and jazz band groups either as a semi permanent or stand in with groups such as Risky Business
• Cover and Supply teaching for others when on holiday or sick.
I trained at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and worked as a full time professional horn player with symphony, opera and ballet orchestras as well as some freelance work. I also played drums professionally with a dance band and for shows. My first teaching role was with the West Sussex Music Centre in the 1970’s which was followed by teaching brass at Bishops Diocesan College in Cape Town as well as at Cape Town and Stellenbosch Universities. My recent music teaching activity began after I moved to the island for an IT job but was subsequently made redundant. This enabled me to start in the music profession again following a number of years working in the IT industry.
MUSIC TEACHING SKILLS
All brass instruments are covered from beginners to advanced levels with special enhanced tuition for French Horn to diploma level and beyond. The instruments I teach include the following:
• French Horn, Tenor Horn
• Trumpet, Cornet, Flugal Horn
• Euphonium, Baritone, Tuba
And all others!
Basic drum kit work from snare drum to full kit for whatever style is required. The tuition starts with the rudiments and stick techniques to advanced levels including music reading skills. The lessons are structured to offer the best tuition services for all ages, abilities and learning proficiency. I also offer specialist tuition services for people with learning difficulties either as a learning experience or for regular therapeutic sessions that are geared towards the fun aspect of music by making a noise!
I teach basic keyboard skills on electronic keyboards and pianos up to approximately grade 4. These are suitable for all ages and give a basic grounding in playing a tune with the automatic accompaniments alongside music reading and basic keyboard techniques. Music theory is also a part of these lessons if it is deemed a requirement of the pupil. Each lesson is geared to the individual or group.
I run Samba drumming workshops and recently ran a series of sessions at Kitbridge School in Newport for their Quest Friday afternoon options. This proved to be so successful that they asked for further session following the initial series and this is ongoing with further work at Downside Middle School. The pupils often come in with no formal music or rhythmic knowledge and they finish by performing a concert of Samba music for the rest of the school in assemblies. The groups include pupils aged between 9 and 14 and are of very mixed educational abilities.
I offer other drum workshops on top of the Samba groups such as African or native American style drumming where the pupils learn to play Djembe drums or other percussion instruments. These can be great fun as well as informative and the pupils who have been to a number of my sessions all want to come back and do more! The sessions are aimed at all ages (in age specific groups) from year 4 primary children to adults.
My choral training experience primarily relates to operatic groups where I have been firstly Chorus Master then Musical Director for a number of productions and concerts. My role was to teach the individual parts to the choir/chorus and then to build in the musical nuances such as dynamics, diction, production and projection and all other aspects relating to creating a full and varied sound for a choral group. These techniques can be applied to all levels of tuition from junior school choirs to orchestral choruses and any other styles when choral singing is required. Simple singing exercises are also great for special needs tuition and can be started at a very simple level raising to a wonderfully complex sound in a short space of time. All that is required is to keep the interest going which I do and make a special point of achieving.
I have recently started teaching some special needs pupils on the drum kit and find this most rewarding especially when I see the sheer pleasure and delight displayed when the pupil is engrossed in what they are doing. I am a firm believer that music is available for everyone without exception and my sessions to date certainly prove that the enjoyment is endemic! My aim is to increase my work in this arena especially with group sessions such as Samba workshops as I know this is something that absolutely everyone will get a sense of fulfillment from. The pleasure is not only transparently obvious in the pupils but also in the carers who attend the sessions as I ensure that everyone is involved in what we do.
MUSIC TEACHING & PERFORMING EXPERIENCE
2007 - Current - Isle of Wight Music Service – peripatetic teacher – brass, keyboards, drums
- Isle of Wight Music Service - Wider Opportunities in Samba, Djembe, Keyboard, Brass & Singing
- Northwood School KS2 curriculum music for year 5 plus year 3 & 4 music appreciation
- Isle of Wight Music Centre – Tutor and conductor for the Foundation Wind band
- Kitbridge & Downside School – Samba and drumming Workshops
- Private brass, keyboard and drum teaching
- Musical Director – Solent G&S Company and CAODS
- Horn player with Isle of Wight Symphony Orchestra and Island Concert Band
- Drums and horn with the Island Savoyards
- Drums with various bands including deputising for Risky Business
- Horn Soloist with Ryde Chorus
- Orchestras for Ryde Chorus and the Cantata Choir
1986 - 2007 - Tutoring a Scout marching band in Totton
- Various one off orchestra performances
1979 - 1985 - CAPAB (Cape performing Arts Board) Opera and Ballet Orchestra
- Brass teaching and band master – Bishops Diocesan College Cape Town
- Wind Octet recordings for SABC Radio and TV
- A short tour with the Rick Wakeman Band
- Various fully professional Musicals with CAPAB
- Horn Teaching at Cape Town and Stellenbosch Universities
- Brass tuition and Brass Band conducting at Bishops Diocesan School in Cape Town
1977 - 1978 - Las Palmas Symphony Orchestra – Principal Horn
- Las Palmas Opera Orchestra – season with international performers such as Jose Carerras and Placido Domingo
- Wind Quintet and other chamber group concert work
1970 - 1977 - Various orchestras in and around London while at college
- Teaching Horn at the West Sussex Music Centre
- Wind Quintets and Octets all over Southern England
- Guildhall School of Music and Drama Symphony Orchestra
- West Sussex Youth orchestra – Principal Horn
- Haywards Heath & Crawley Operatic Society Orchestras
I am running a business that involves many aspects of music tuition and performance and I wish to enhance the lives of others whatever their circumstances by offering the opportunity to learn and to make music for personal or therapeutic pleasure and life fulfilment in as many people as possible from children to adults of all ages and abilities especially those with learning difficulties.
I always make the pupil(s) feel good about what they are doing and that the learning process is always enjoyable. Each pupil is treated as an individual and the tuition process is specifically geared to any requirements and or disabilities that the pupil may have. This is how I work with everyone be they very fast learners or extreme special needs and the pace of learning always appropriate to the requirement. This is why I take on new pupils and groups be they private or in schools, predominantly by recommendation and have not had a requirement to advertise for some time now.
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Availability: Weekends / Weekdays (all times)
References Available: No (✘ Not On File)
- Boston House College (1983) - Diploma (College) (✘ Not On File)
- Guildhall School of Music and Drama (1977) - AGSM Performers course (College) (✘ Not On File)