Bern Music Studio

Bern Music Studio

Online piano lessons for adult beginners by experienced teacher specializing in teaching adults.

Operating as usual


"How often should you take piano lessons?"
If you are serious about learning how to play the piano, you should have a piano lesson once a week. The time in-between the lessons needs to be spent practicing the assignment your teacher gave you at the lesson. You should practice at least 1/2 hour every day. This way, you will have consistent progress on your journey to playing the piano.


"Why can't I play the piano anymore? It has just seemed to leave me."
You are probably just rusty. Playing any instrument is just like playing a sport. When we stop doing it, we get out of shape. Take lessons, practice every day, and you will get back in shape!


Can't afford a piano, but want to learn to play? No problem! Get a digital keyboard and get started. Go for 88 keys and a sensitive touch that can play loud and soft. Then you are all set! The different sounds you can make are fun too!


TIPS for BEGINNERS on French Horn
"Why is the right hand inside the bell?"
When we are playing the horn, the bell rests on our right leg and the right hand is placed inside the bell with the outside of the hand touching the bell so that air can escape from the horn past the palm. The hand is almost flat against the bell with the thumb touching the first finger.
The horn is naturally not perfectly in tune. We use the hand to help tune individual notes. When a note is sharp, we can cover the hole in the bell a little bit to flatten the note to the perfect pitch. If a note is flat, we can take our hand out of the bell a little bit or open the hand more to let it sharpen. Sometimes composers indicate a plus sign above a note to tell us that they want us to make a special sound that only the horn can do. We use our hand to completely close off the air from the bell. This raises the pitch one half step (so we have to transpose the pitch down a half step) and creates a harsh, coarse sound. You need to experiment with the hand to find just the right placement to accomplish this.


Professional French horn players play on what is called a "double horn". That is, two horns in one. One pitched in F and the other pitched in B flat. There is a valve that let's them toggle between the two.

Beginners usually start with a single horn, either the F or the B flat. Although most students are started with the F horn, it is really better to start with a B flat horn. The F horn sounds very rough above the G above middle C. And those notes are difficult to play. On the other hand, all of the notes on the B flat horn sound clear and are easier to play. This is obviously the way to go so that beginners can be more successful right away.

French Hunting Horns in Action 07/07/2021

Around 1680 the first French hunting horn was invented. It was coiled metal tubing with a wide flared bell that could be held over the shoulder while on a horse. Listen below to how it probably sounded.

French Hunting Horns in Action Hunters from the Charente show their Skills at the Castelnaud (24) Fete.


5 Benefits of playing the CLARINET:
1) Not hard to learn to play.
2) Easy to carry around.
3) Helps coordination and motor skills.
4) Enhances brain function.
5) Can be played very expressively.

SVARAM | Chalumeau 06/25/2021

In Europe in the 1600's there was no clarinet yet. The instrument used in an orchestra for the upper notes was the trumpet, but there was a problem. The trumpet had no valves at that time and could not play all of the notes that the composer needed. Recorders of different sizes could be used, but they were too soft and couldn't be heard in an orchestra ensemble. So a "mock trumpet" was invented called the "chalumeau".

The chalumeau played in the same range as the trumpet, but could play a lot more notes. It looked very similar to a recorder, but had a reed in the mouthpiece and had a bigger bore (the inside of the instrument) and was a lot louder than a recorder.

A register key was added around 1700 which was the beginning of the modern clarinet design. Over time, more keys and improvements were made. Final modifications were made in 1830 creating the clarinet that we know of today.
The video below shows what a chalumeau sounds like. Enjoy!

SVARAM | Chalumeau


How do you get a trumpet player to play softly?
Take away his instrument.


STUDENT SPOTLIGHT - I had a trumpet student who came to me because he wanted help with his upper range. We worked on improving his playing in general. After a couple of years his playing had improved quite a bit. He was playing those high notes with ease and his facility was amazing. He was playing first trumpet in the high school band and playing solos and in ensembles at his church. He decided to go to college majoring in electrical engineering, but I'm sure that he is playing his trumpet in the college band or orchestra!

L. v. Beethoven, Signals from Leonore 2 & 3 06/14/2021

HISTORY - FIRST TRUMPET - The first trumpets did not have valves. They were either long metal tubes or tubes that wrapped around like you see in the video below. They were used as signaling instruments for the military and religious services. Enjoy listening to how they sounded.

L. v. Beethoven, Signals from Leonore 2 & 3 The two signals from Ludwig van Beethovens Leonore Ouvertures on the natural trumpet.Since those 2 exerpts are asked in many orchestral auditions, I hope to ...


ANNOUNCING lessons on trumpet, French horn, and clarinet for students in elementary and middle school bands who want to improve their playing so that they can really enjoy being part of the band.


TIPS for BEGINNERS: How to sit at the piano. Feet flat on the floor, back straight, arms parallel to the floor. You can use either an adjustable piano stand for a digital piano, or an adjustable bench. If you sit on a chair, sit forward on it so that you can sit up straight. Don't lean back. This posture is very important so that you don't strain back, neck, shoulder, and arm muscles. Have fun playing!


I had a piano student who start taking lessons from me in third grade. In fifth grade she decided to play the cello at school. Because she had studied piano first, she noticed that picking up the cello was easy! She was having such a great time learning this new instrument. She kept taking piano lessons, too!

Roman water organ performance 05/17/2021

FUN FACTS - The Very First Musical Keyboard
The first musical keyboard was invented by a Greek named Ctesibius around 250 BCE. It was powered by water and was the very first pipe organ. The video below shows a modern musician playing a replica of this instrument in a park. Enjoy listening to how it sounds!

Roman water organ performance Justus Wilberg & Eva Fritz playing a Roman water organ reconstructed from the metal pieces discovered around Budapest. (Römermuseum Haltern am See, 10.06.18)


Register for summer piano classes! June 14 - July 23. Two classes a week to give beginners a great start on piano lessons and be ready for fall lessons. Check out for more details.😀


The desert is so beautiful this time of year!

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