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Testimonials

November 16, 2011

Sarah Hallman(11):  Person of the Year Award  “Mrs. Prescott deserves this person of the year award for helping  me with violin and inspiring me. Mrs. Prescott is my friend and violin teacher.  Mrs. Prescott is trying to get me into higher levels of violin.  She always finds unique ways to help me.  She also helps me by believing in me.”

Martha Braden, Concert Pianist and  Master Teacher/Coach: “Students come into your studio glowing and leave glowing”.

January 14, 2013

By Eric Devlin
edevlin@montgomerynews.com

Music teacher Joanne Prescott at her home music studio in Ambler. Gazette staff photo by BOB RAINES

“It’s a discipline. It affects all of your life.”

For Joanne Prescott, teaching music is more than just learning the notes on a page or the difference between the black keys and the white keys on the piano. For her, it’s about offering students the tools they will need to solve problems and the abilities required to handle life’s many lessons.

For more than 35 years Prescott has been teaching piano, violin and voice to students as young as 4 and ranging in age to some in their 80s.

A student of music since she was 10 after she taught herself piano, Prescott attended Nyack Missionary College as a music major. It was there that a number of doors began opening for her through performance, including being part of a string quartet, performing on the radio and TV, traveling with the college choir and singing as part of the college varsity trio.

“I even got to sing on stage at Carnegie Hall and play on Leonard Bernstein’s private piano,” she wrote on her website.

She then transferred to Gordon College to study elementary education and landed a teaching job in Raleigh, Mass., where she taught fifth grade for two years. After her two sons were born, she decided to teach music lessons from her house and began working as a substitute teacher.

Over the years, Prescott attended a number of seminars and workshops in order to teach music and even trained for three years to teach piano at the New School for Music Study in Princeton, N.J.

She’s taught hundreds of students out of the downstairs studio of her home in Ambler. Teaching and seeing students begin to master their work is what has been most rewarding, she said.

She said she feels she’s refined her skills as a teacher over time and said she’s able to key in on body language to see if a student is building confidence with the music.

“My goal is to have everyone here loving music,” she said

“Seeiig the joy on somebody’s face when they’ve accomplished a difficult piece and they know that they’re doing it well,” is her favorite part of the job.“Good teaching is getting into that person and challenging them in order to raise the bar,” she said.

Many of Prescott’s former students have said to her that their college professors have noted how well-prepared they are, which they then attribute to their lessons with her. She said a number of her students all come from the same family, so teaching for her is very “cyclical.”

She said everyone should be involved in some sort of music education because it forces discipline and can be therapeutic. For those who think the ship may have sailed years ago on lessons, Prescott said she’s taught a number of older adults who thought they couldn’t do it, but once they began to understand the science behind it, it became fun and they picked it up quickly.

“[It’s] fun when you understand it,” she said.

Recently though, Prescott said its been increasingly difficult to find students to teach. She said the weakened economy has made business slow, especially since most of her clients are brought to her through word of mouth.

She remains optimistic and said she has no plans to slow down at this point.

“This is my dream,” she said.

For more information about Prescott and her music lessons, visit her website at www.musicstudyprogram.com.

 March 23, 2013

“As an aspiring composer, I am so grateful to have had Joanne Prescott as my piano teacher.  Her patience, enthusiasm and generosity allowed me to discover the joy of music in my own life. Moreover, her special focus on student composition awakened my creativity in unexpected and rewarding ways.”  Robert Smith, student at Dartmouth

April, 2013

Sanford Jones:   Children’s Opera Composer, Concert Pianist and Montessori Teacher Trainer.  “This lady is doing work servicing such a valuable purpose for our culture today.”