The title “The Unashamed Piano Teacher” was inspired from the title of a book called “The Unashamed Accompanist”, written by Gerald Moore, a brilliant pianist and a great accompanist to many famous musicians, most notably the German baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. As Moore called himself the unashamed piano accompanist whom some people think be inferior to a soloist, I parody myself as the unashamed piano teacher, who is not afraid to share my own experience in order to inspire the others.
At first my intention was to write something about my experience as a piano teacher, who has encountered students of the most diverse ages and characters. And it was only an one-off post. But as I started writing the first paragraph, it gradually changed to become something about my own piano learning experience since childhood. Then I thought, perhaps I could share my experience – good or bad – to my students and readers so they could understand I too had been through difficult times in my musical journey, and thus be enlightened and encouraged from my story.
There had been times for me that I felt I should stop playing and teaching, that I was uninspired and was not improving in my playing and teaching even I worked as hard as I ever could. There had been times that I wanted to give up on my playing and teaching so much I was tremendously depressed, wondering what else I could do without playing the piano, which had always been a part of my life and had led me so far musically, spiritually, and physically. All these had happened not only during my teenage era, but especially in the times of my graduate study in the States. Yet no teacher was there for me. Thus I want to become the teacher I never have for my students, a teacher who strives to be as informative, positive, encouraging, inspiring and supportive as I can ever be. So you know, when there are times that seem difficult in your piano learning, I am always here for you. What I want to tell you in my story, particularly my students who are teenagers and adults, is that you should never give up in what you have in your playing. Every one of you has your own musical ability, talent and sound. Every one of you progresses in your own way and time. Every one of you is unique and special.
I hope it does not sound corny as it might seem to be, because I really mean everything I write here.
P.S. I have written and translated into Chinese until the fifth chapter and I have stopped ever since, as I started to doubt if anyone was reading them. Please let me know if you are and if you want me to continue writing the story. Cheers.
Here is the link to all the chapters:
The Unashamed Piano Teacher Chapters