Bonnie Brown runs her established bilingual French-English music school in Paris. Lessons are held in person in Paris, 3ème and also online for students unable to be physically present. She has had the pleasure of working with students from Paris' most prominent private schools, as well as with the students in the public eye and children of public figures requiring an additional level of discretion.
To ensure the most complete musical education for students, every school year is punctuated with key events that serve both as a constant motivation to maintain regular practice as well as providing essential musical experiences. Students are goal-oriented, encouraged by the joy of seeing their improvement first-hand, and progress through self-motivation and the desire for excellence.
In addition to weekly private tuition, all students are invited to participate in the events below, which aim to foster a feeling of musical community and mutual respect amongst the pupils. None of the additional events below are compulsory, rather they are on offer to those who wish to participate.
Owing to her commitments as a concert artist, Bonnie has a limited number of hours that she can devote to teaching. Students who cannot be accommodated at the time of enquiry can be added to a waiting list for an available time after an initial consultation and trial lesson.
Lesson length depends on each student's individual age and level, but generally ranges between 30 minutes (small children) and 90 minutes (intermediate to advanced level students) weekly. A regular weekly lesson will include tuition in repertoire, technical work, sight-reading, music history and listening exercises. Unless the student has a strong music theory background, theory is also incorporated into almost every class (for more information on theory tuition please see here).
A precise practice schedule is provided to students at the conclusion of each class, often with the aid of personalised videos and recordings to ensure efficient and enjoyable work at home.
Compulsory lesson dates for all students are in accordance with Le calendrier scolaire Zone C (Paris). Tuition is offered to students willing to commit to regular, weekly lessons (in the case of adult students, fortnightly lessons). All students are required to meet all compulsory lesson dates at a pre-agreed weekly time. Missed lessons by the student are the responsibility of the student and will not be rescheduled, replaced or refunded.
Three trial lessons are mandatory for all students at the start of tuition. After these three lessons, if the teacher and student wish to continue, enrolment is automatically for the entire school year. Students may commence lessons at any time during the school year depending on availability. Fees will be calculated at the time of commencement. Although not compulsory, students are most welcome to take lessons during holiday periods depending on Bonnie's availability.
THEORY LESSONS & EXTERNAL THEORY EXAMINATIONS
Theory tuition is organised the same way as piano tuition and most often in incorporated into the weekly piano lesson. In some exceptional cases, students are accepted exclusively for theory tuition.
All students are encouraged to prepare for and undertake the ABRSM (Associate Board of the Royal Schools of Music) music theory exams to consolidate their understanding of this essential aspect of music education. Since 2011, Bonnie's students have been systematically awarded outstanding results across all grades, with nearly 20% of students awarded a perfect score of 100%.
In addition to being an essential element to a well-rounded musical education, ABRSM theory results are internationally recognised and make a valuable addition to college and university applications.
Students are encouraged to participate in the Theory Workshops, a fun, social theory-intensive weekend that thoroughly prepares the candidates for their exams.
THE ANNUAL CONCERT
The largest annual event where all students perform at least one solo work from memory and additionally come together to perform 4-hands and chamber music (either prepared in workshops or individually during lessons).
Since 2009 Bonnie has hired venues in Paris to facilitate the crowds of over 100 people who come to support the students. As a concert artist herself she is a strong advocate of the importance of performance practice for young musicians.
The American Church in Paris 75007, location of the Annual Concert
PRIVATE ACHIEVEMENT RECITALS
Goal-orientated, these smaller concerts are tailored to individual students to motivate and celebrate different achievements (for instance, recitals of an entire volume of student pieces, themed recitals, recitals to celebrate special events etc.).
Most students will participate in a personalised event for their friends, family and other students within the first 2 years of tuition.
The Dutch Embassy, Paris, splendid location of a private student recital
THE ANNUAL SCALES & SIGHT-READING EXAM
Run every school year, this is an internally organised exam where each student prepares an individually tailored programme of scales, technical work and sight-reading at their own level.
Taking advantage of the rich cultural life on offer in Paris, student excursions to live performances are proposed several times per school year. Friendly challenges and competitions are also organised to motivate students to strive even higher, with a concert outing as the prize. As a concert pianist herself, Bonnie is delighted to be able to invite her students to her public performances.
Student excursion to the Philharmonie de Paris, 2018
Bonnie has extensive experience rehabilitating advanced-level students suffering from repetitive strain injury and physical technical issues. Please enquire via the contact form.