Ruth Birchall. Anchorsholme School of Music, company logo epta logo ISM-Fellow

If you have any questions about my teaching style or would like to arrange a lesson at my music studio, please call:

What is it like taking lessons at my music studio?

My home piano studio consists of a brightly lit room incorporating a comfortable waiting area. The atmosphere is fun, inviting and conducive to learning.


Several purpose-built music cabinets contain a comprehensive sheet music and CD library. Drawers in the cupboards hold worksheets, stickers, games etc., making it quickly accessible for the students' needs.


The room also houses a brand new, acoustic Yamaha C2X 5'8" conservatoire grand piano for the students' lessons. This mid-size concert piano possesses a clear, crisp sound and a great balance. There is also a top of the range Clavinova CLP-170 electric piano for students' use.


The external environment does not intrude into my studio. There are no distractions in my piano studio so our complete attention is on the lesson at hand.


Music and teaching are my loves. Read more about my philosophy here. I enjoy offering my students incentives throughout the year. This provides external motivation, making it possible for students to work towards specific personal goals to help build their character and self-esteem.

What can you expect from my weekly piano lessons?

Piano lessons are held weekly in the piano studio at my home.


I use the Russian teaching method which is suitable for all levels and ages and is perfect for children. I focus on hand position and fingering, as well as posture and quality of sound. This style of teaching works for students who choose music as a career as well as for those who want to play the piano for pleasure.


The repertoire is carefully selected according to the goal chosen by the pupil and myself. All students receive specific instructions on how to practise. Various musical styles (including classical, pop and jazz) are explored in greater depth, so that the pupil's opinion of composers, genres and musical periods is based on first-hand experience.


Each student has a practice diary, theory workbook, technique book, lesson book and a performance book. They also have a ring binder with sections divided into worksheets, supplementary pieces, music terminology, reference materials and manuscript paper. At the beginning of each academic year parents are advised the days of teaching, days the studio is closed and forthcoming examinations, festivals and recitals. I strive for an honest and open relationship between the parent, student and myself so we all work together to help the student increase his/her musical knowledge and love of music.


To me, quality work is more important than quantity. I allow students to move at their own pace, taking great care that they are given no more information/assignment than they can assimilate. I take the necessary time to ensure a clear understanding, beginning with a solid foundation in practice procedures.


In order to achieve physical and tactile skills, I use technique books to teach scales and arpeggios, chords and cadences and transposition. In addition, attention is given to using a variety of articulations and the recognition of musical patterns.


Repertoire pieces are played and evaluated by student and teacher. Corrections are made and annotated in pencil on the music and challenging sections are analysed and practised. Practice suggestions for each piece are written in the student's practice diary so that the parents and student understand exactly what is expected in the coming week.


The student is assigned one theory unit weekly to be completed at home, which is checked at the lesson the following week. Concepts are often reinforced with supplementary theory notes. Understanding music theory facilitates a broader knowledge of piano performance and music in general.


Students are encouraged to take part in local music festivals and recitals. Participation is a decision made by the parent and student. However, I do recommend and offer suggestions based on what would most benefit the student. I want my students to experience fun and creativity to eliminate the fear of performing. Playing in public allows students to demonstrate their hard work and musical ability.


Seeking a piano teacher in and around Blackpool? Ruth adapts her classes to suit your needs. Call now, or view a list of key resources to assist you in your piano lessons.


A hand resting on a keyboard A grand piano and leather stool in front of a round stained glass window