Dr Paul Jessen - Piano & Organ Teacher

I offer Music lessons in

  • piano


         electronic home organ



If you are thinking of learning the piano or organ, give me a call to discuss requirements and terms. Music lessons can add so much to the value of our lives and the efficacy of children's education beyond the instrument they are learning.

Whether you or your child are extraordinarily gifted or not, whether you have time to practice a great deal or not, you can still gain from music lessons. Of course, the more time you can devote to practice, the more progress you will make, however I can work with students with limited time. Although limited time-span for education is a little easier to deal with with the advent of online colleges, it is always best to use a hands-on instructor when it comes to musical instruments.

All ages from four to ninety four are welcome.
All levels are welcome -- from early beginners to university diploma levels.


On Teaching

Ninive Clements Calegari wrote:
Great teachers should be paid like doctors or corporate attorneys. I worry about what will happen to our economy and our democracy if we don't start to take teachers' jobs seriously. Click here to see her book.

Teaching is an important and valuable profession. It must be undertaken with passion, compassion, intuition, wit and humour, with a genuine care for the student's understanding and well-being. I hear of too much teaching that is perfunctory and merely consists of the so-called teacher assigning pieces to learn and then listening to them played a week later, with no assistance or guidance given. By contrast I work with my students to discover the ways that they can master the difficulties presented by each piece, and thus learn the lessons that the pieces have to offer.

The formation of the young in a positive way is of utmost importance. The City of Toronto is currently running a programme entitled: Your Kids Are Listening. Here they underline the importance of teaching by example as well as using positive language to increase your child's self-esteem. This is how I teach. It is taking me many years to outgrow the negative attitudes of parents and teachers in my past; I do not want that to be the case for my students. There are many resources for you to download on that site to help you and your children. If you find that you over-react to some things that your children do or say, you may be suffering from trauma related problems. You can read about those symptoms and how they may be released on my web page on Trauma Healing.

The teacher should impart a greater understanding of the purpose of learning music to the student's larger life, as well as a greater appreciation of music as a whole. As a teacher I am always looking for ways to explain new concepts better to each individual in ways they can understand, according to their personality and interests. My studies in psychology have given me great insight into the workings of the mind and psyche enabling me to match efficiently my teaching style to the student's needs. Much teaching involves the traumatising of students, which destroys their ability to enjoy playing or to perform in a relaxed and effective manner. My studies in Trauma Healing have shown me how I can assist a student in releasing these pent-up energies (trapped in the nervous system) that block their successful public performance.

Music is one activity that combines all our modalities of learning: sight, hearing, touch, and thinking. It increases a student's self-discipline while increasing the brain's complexity and hence ability to learn other skills such as mathematics and language. It is now known that learning music at an early age even reduces the likelihood of Alzheimers in later years.

My own years of study of piano, viola, and organ from twenty different teachers have shown me what works and what does not work! I can even trace my teacher - student lineage back to Johann Sebastian Bach, Anton Rubinstein, and Ludwig van Beethoven. These many years of study and multiplicity of teachers have encompassed both modern and historic performance techniques. Add to that my extensive experience as a recitalist on organ and piano and thirty years of teaching amateur choirs and you have a well-versed empathetic teacher with exceptional communication skills.

In my curriculum I aim for a well-rounded education including an understanding of each style of music and period, technique, reading skills, harmony and chord formation, playing from a lead-line, accompaniment patterns, improvisation, and aural skills. By a special method of finger yoga I strengthen the fingers and make them more supple. I choose pieces and books that strengthen my teaching methods and keep the student's interest alive.

Why not come and meet me. Take one or two lessons to experience the difference of a REAL TEACHER who understands and cares for his students and their overall welfare!


Rates: available upon enquiry

Fees may be discussed when you call.

Fees are based upon a weekly lesson. Postponing a lesson is possible with more than 24 hours notice. A lesson cancelled with less than 24 hours notice will be charged for. For a discussion of policies on missed lessons, please go to the following professional page:
Policy on missed lessons Professional Page

There is a 20% discount for those students who wish to pay for a complete school term in advance.


The One Year Course Challenge

Yes, it is possible for a TEENAGER or an ADULT to learn basic piano in only one year! "How?" you may ask. It is really quite simple:

  1. Take an hour's lesson every week for 50 weeks
  2. Practise one hour a day for 50 weeks
  3. Take NO days off!

I have only had ONE student who finished the course in one year! Why? Because she practised one hour every day. Most students do not practise for an hour every day, so they progress more slowly. It is all in the practice folks!

Are YOU up to the challenge?

If so, call me.


Toronto Teaching Locations:

  • 509 Rushton Rd (off St Clair Ave West five blocks west of Bathurst)
  • Your home (fee will include travel time)


Some Teaching Links:

Policy on missed lessons Professional Page

Music Teacher Magazine

Practice Spot

Royal Conservatory of Music Examinations


More about Dr Paul Jessen:

Tuition experience


Contact me

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Last Updated on September 25, 2007 by Dr Paul Jessen