Important Changes in May

Hello Students and Parents,

By Monday May 10, both Carol and I will be fully vaccinated so I am able to welcome students back to in-person lessons at 2119 Sprunt Ave, if so desired, but with several provisos:

  • We will all need to wear masks, as well as myself, even if fully vaccinated.  This includes the parents or guardians who bring the students plus any other siblings who come to the lessons. There is a slight risk of Covid 19 infection even after vaccination and we cannot risk that.  The way I think about masks is that apart from covid it has drastically reduced the flu and cold seasons which is great.  Ukulele and Guitar players need to wear masks as well; just have to deal with singing in a mask!
  • Please do not bring food to the waiting room (you can’t eat while effectively wearing a mask).  Bring a water bottle of course and slip your mask down briefly to take sips.
  • It has been shown in research that Covid is rarely passed on by contact with surfaces but I will be wiping the piano down after each lesson.  I will also provide hand sanitizer and I will have a few disposable masks if you forget to bring one.
  • Please respect our lovely house and yard.  We have a bathroom that can be used for absolutely necessary use only.  Please try to use your own facilities or those at school before coming to your lesson.  This also reduces any of the small risks we have of the infection. I will leave paper towels in there to wipe your hands so please do not use the hand towels.  You can sit on the deck if the weather is appropriate but please don’t allow students to run around the yard (would hate for someone to have a fall and the terrain is rough!) or touch my plants, indoors or out.  Please bring a book, school work, ipad, something to use while waiting. Wifi is available.
  • In May I expect to be teaching in a hybrid manner and have purchased an additional laptop to facilitate this.  It will not be easy to keep switching but some people have already indicated that they want to stay virtual till the end of the Spring semester on June 11 and I cannot realistically change the schedule before that (From fall I will be teaching on dedicated virtual and live days and I will speak with each of you regarding scheduling when the time comes). When you arrive for an in person lesson I might still be teaching online at the piano so, as before, the door will be open, just come in.  If the door is closed please close it after you but if the weather is nice you can leave it open and just the screen door will be closed.  We have the yard sprayed regularly in summer with garlic spray so there are no mosquitoes which makes sitting outside very pleasant.
  • New People:  My address is 2119 Sprunt Ave.  Please come down the driveway and along the path on the right hand side of the house (be careful on the flagstones) and come up on the deck at the back where you will see the door to my waiting room.  Parents of older students can wait in my waiting room or leave for the half hour and return at the end.  This has worked really well in the past.  Go for a walk down on Ellerbee Creek or do some fast shopping.


I need to know if you are going to come to in-person lessons after May 10 or whether you are going to remain on line.  This is critical for my teaching!! Every student and family needs to let me know by Friday 30 April by 4pm. Please consider carefully. Thank you!

Other news:

The Durham Music Teachers Association (DMTA) held a very successful outdoor playathon on April 17 in the grounds of Greystone Church Hillsborough Rd Durham.  We raised over $1,000 for the scholarship fund!  Two of my students played very well, Mai Dunn and Louise Downs.  Thanks girls!

On Saturday April 24, five students played in a DMTA Virtual concert from 3-5, Quinn Barbaza, Lydia Pollak Coy, Leo and Ava Pieraccini and Pascale Lodewick.  These virtual concerts have been so great as in person recitals have been not possible.  There will be a final one on 5/29 at which another 4 students will be playing, Khaleel Jackson, and Louise Downs, and possibly Oscar McCormick  as well.

Summer lessons:

Summer schedule will run from Monday June 21 to Friday August 20.  Please let me know if you are interested in summer lessons and what times and days would be best. If you are attending day camps, what time are they finishing?  Fall semester will begin Tuesday September 7, the day after labor day.

All the best wishes for your good health.