Piano, songwriting/composition, group singing and aural tuition with Karen McCabe
BMus (Hons), Music PGCE with QTS
DBS checked and a member of the Musician’s Union.
I offer piano lessons for children and adults, beginner to intermediate level. As an experienced singer-pianist I can teach you either formally with music notation or I can nurture those ‘ear’ players among you with chords, lead sheets and improvisation skills. I actually like to combine both of those methods in my lessons to enable you to become a well-rounded piano player. There are three elements of musicianship…performing, composing and listening and I like to incorporate all three of those aspects in my lessons, developing music appreciation as well as exploring songwriting and compositional ideas of your own. Although Music lessons do not have to be about academic achievement, many pupils do opt to take exams as it gives them a focus and recognition of their work. I therefore offer ABRSM grades. I also welcome those of you who just want to relax and have fun with the piano.
I am a singer-songwriter myself (you can hear some of my work below).
I worked as Head of Music in a secondary school for several years playing piano in school concerts and productions. As well as having played in local bands I also accompany my singing pupils on the piano in their lessons, in the showcase and in exams.
All piano lessons take place at my home in Windsor or online.
AURAL/SIGHT READING TUITION
These aspects of practical exams are quite challenging in themselves. They are the same tests whether you sing or play an instrument. There is often not much time in your practical music lessons to go into these skills in depth so I welcome performers of all instruments and grades for extra tuition in this. Students of all grades 1-8 welcome and you don’t already have to be learning your instrument with me.
SONGWRITING AND COMPOSING
I offer tuition and guidance with songwriting and composing, beginner to intermediate level. Songwriting is a very healing and nurturing activity. Here are some examples of my own songwriting work (tracks are available to download from Bandcamp https://karenmccabe.bandcamp.com/)
SINGING FOR THE SOUL – WEEKLY GROUP VOCAL WORKOUTS AND SING-ALONGS FOR ADULTS (Fridays at 5pm)
Everyone can sing! Music is such a healing force in these fast-paced, often stressful times. Singing for the Soul is a weekly group vocal workout and singalong session for wellbeing, fun, confidence and meeting others, allowing you to warm up and gently work your voice, enjoy singing along with me and the piano and developing your musicality in a safe and non-judgemental environment. We also work on holding ourselves confidently and expressing ourselves freely. Sessions take place online on Zoom. All abilities welcome, no previous experience necessary.
I am passionate about the physical and mental health benefits of singing, drawing on experience from my many years as Head of Music at secondary school level, choir leader, singing facilitator in care centres and singing myself (ABRSM Grade 8 singing, choral singing and lead vocalist in bands). I guide you to work with your voice as it is – this is not vocal ‘training’. We learn how to warm up gently and effectively and simple techniques to help you get the best out of it safely and avoiding strain. But the main focus is just enjoying singing, exploring your own interpretation and expression.