Welcome and thanks for dropping by. I’m Spencer and I’ve been a session pianist/keyboardist for around 20 years working in all genres including theatre, film, live gigs and concerts. I continue to work as a freelance pianist in all styles and love it. When a few family friends asked for online piano lessons during lockdown, I enjoyed it so decided to carry on teaching and continue to this day.
I specialise in helping keen adults reach their potential, whether they be beginners, returners or even advanced. My main focus is on efficient practise and I have a relaxed attitude that is realistic but also know the importance of encouragement.
I studied at Trinity College of Music, London. I have a love for a crossover of genres like classical, jazz & rock that has led to me playing in various West End theatres and most recently on the film soundtrack to Matilda The Musical.
Highlights so far include
Film: Matilda The Musical
Theatre: Matilda, Les Miserables, Love Never Dies
Sessions: The Batman with live orchestra
Rock/Pop: David Live, the David Bowie tribute band as Mike Garson
Solo recordings: The Crown, The Queen
On screen: The Crown, Maestro
I will empower you to:
Solve technical difficulties
Improve your musicianship
Avoid bad habits
I will encourage you to become fluent with sheet music but also to improve your ears for attention to detail.
I look forward to sharing your frustrations, and your breakthroughs! So if you are keen to make faster progress then please feel free to introduce yourself!
Taster sessions are £25 for 30 minutes via FaceTime or Zoom. Please note I can only accommodate weekday mornings at present, subject to availability.
So don’t be shy, say hi!
The Moldau (Smetana) - arranged & performed by Spencer
Special thanks to the following pupils who have been kind enough to write about our recent sessions below.
“For years I’ve wanted to learn the piano but didn’t feel I had the self confidence as an adult and then I met Spencer. He is a fantastic teacher. Even on my first lesson he had me playing complete songs and in a short period of time I have become a confident pianist. His approach to learning has allowed me to develop my own style and enabled me to critique my playing helping me to continually progress in my piano skills.”
“What a privilege it is to have the opportunity to learn from the talented and ever-patient Spencer. I closed the lid on my piano some years ago and never expected to play again but with Spencer’s guidance I gained the confidence to start again and I love it. Spencer is a calm and thoughtful teacher and with every lesson he sets achievable goals, enabling me to enjoy the piano more and more every day. I wasn’t sure how virtual lessons would work but Spencer is completely focussed on everything that is happening on the keyboard and it feels just as though we are together in the room. Spencer combines authority and kindness, he is an inspiring teacher and I would recommend any aspiring pianist to take this amazing chance to be taught by him.”
“I really enjoy having online lessons with Spencer. He is a very good teacher and explains things very well. His friendly and encouraging approach have been a great help in improving my sight reading and aural skills.”
WHAT IF I’M SHY OF MAKING MISTAKES OR GETTING THINGS WRONG?
I’ve made millions of mistakes on my learning journey and expect you to do the same. I’ll do my very best to help you relax and stay at ease with a few tips as we go. I realise that it can be daunting at first, but in my experience this is usually quickly offset by the joy of learning and improving this wonderful new skill together.
HOW MUCH SHOULD I TRY TO PRACTISE?
Most of us have the usual commitments but to make steady progress I would suggest aiming for between 5 and 30 minutes every day. Remember that quality of practise is more important than quantity.
DO I HAVE TO TAKE EXAMS OR PLAY SCALES?
This depends on your personal goals. Exams and scales have their place but for some can also create unnecessary anxiety and have negative associations. If this is the case for you then I can tailor-make alternative exercises to suit you. Talk this through with me over a cup of tea sometime.
I’VE TRIED VARIOUS VIDEO LESSONS. WHAT DO YOU BRING THAT’S UNIQUE?
Video coaching certainly has many benefits and can be a great source of inspiration. However in one to one sessions you’ll glean nuggets of personal feedback to make you a more efficient pianist that might otherwise go unnoticed. Bad habits are easily formed which may result in unnecessary tension and make playing harder than it needs to be. It can also be useful to have someone to discuss progress with whilst avoiding the risk of a false economy of your time and efforts.
DO YOU TEACH BEGINNERS?
Absolutely! I’m more interested in attitude than ability. I have a strong fascination with growth mindset and strongly believe that anyone can achieve anything with the right attitude and motivation.
I’M KEEN TO TRY. WHAT SHOULD I DO NEXT?
Fantastic! Please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can arrange a virtual cup of tea together or short session to discuss further.
Film: Star Wars
TV: Dragons Den/ Hunted
Hobby: Close up magic
Band: Dire Straits
Artist: David Bowie
Piece: Schubert’s Fantasie in F minor
Classical pianist: Horowitz/ Volodos
Jazz pianist: Oscar Peterson, Michel Petrucciani
Orchestral piece: The Planets