Specialized piano instruction for beginner, intermediate, and advanced level students
All students enjoy access to an on-site full recording studio! Private lessons can be tailored to provide students with their very own professional recordings of mastered songs and performance ready material.
Studio reel of piano students studying with Nikk May
More Information About Private Piano Lessons
In many instances, the studio receives applications from piano students wishing to transfer from other facilities where they've simply outgrown their current teacher and/or general music program. These piano students range from modern/contemporary studies, to blues, jazz, praise and worship, classical, soundtrack, and original composers.
Performance-Oriented Piano Lessons
Though not all piano students studying privately are mandated to perform, there is a strong emphasis on performance development. Nurturing the essential abilities and intuition that make high level students, private piano lessons are designed with a student-centered approach to meet students where they are at while simultaneously providing them with the right musical nutrition to build successful skill sets.
Learn To Play As Well As Speak
All too often piano students seeking transfer from other music programs have spent 10 or so months preparing the same piece, only being trained to recite music from memory. Though memorization is a valuable skill, this method of teaching unfortunately does not allow students to properly understand, communicate, or essentially develop the fundamental ability to "converse" through music. Instead, it rather trains them much the same as a parrot would be trained to imitate without comprehension. Piano students studying privately here at the studio are taught the proper forms of all notation from traditional clefs and standard sheet music, to chord building, harmonizing, chart reading, and improvisation, using practical methods that allow them to effectively communicate on their instrument both as a soloist and as part of a larger group or ensemble.
Applicable Theory For Piano Lessons
Students at the studio taking private piano lessons are taught critical elements of music theory beyond that of just scales and rhythm exercises. Students develop comprehensive skills allowing them to "connect the dots" to how music is created as well as learning how to create their own original compositions and piano masterpieces.
Interpretive Piano Studies
Private piano lessons encompass an approach that breaks down ideas such as color and texture, relating these to expressive elements like emotion and intent, and ultimately allowing students to touch and feel sound where the art of creating music becomes a much more tangible experience. Students are taught how to listen to the sound and environments around them, strengthening themselves into becoming better musicians as well as performers.
Looking for "Online" Piano Lessons? Click below!
Private piano lessons are offered in-studio as well as online using a professional multi-camera setup. The piano is one of the most versatile instruments in the family of music. With many elements involved in its makeup, the piano is what drives every music classroom. The piano encompasses a complete spectrum of understanding and creating music. Private piano lessons consist of scale studies, theory, bookwork, various repertoire, appropriate technique, and more.
Piano lesson rates are $60/30 minute session, $90/45 minute session, and $120/60 minute session.
Have a listen to some incredibly talented students on the audio samples page!
See teaching philosophy for more details
Why choose Nikk?
Nikk has worked across numerous stages, both as an educator and professionally managed performer. He's trained students internationally, and shared students with famous celebrity vocal coaches such as Brett Manning (Taylor Swift, Keith Urban, Leona Lewis, Hayley Williams), Seth Riggs (Michael Jackson, Anita Baker, Stevie Wonder, Barbra Streisand, Madonna), and Mama Jan Smith (Usher, The Band Perry).
Nikk has had the pleasure of watching his students connect with Grammy award winning producer Narada Michael Walden (Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, Diana Ross, Aretha Franklin), Rob Thomas (Matchbox 20), and Harry Connick Jr., while others have gone on to sign record contracts, shoot music videos, perform live on television, and mature into their own musical successes. Nikk has also helped students succeed at the University level, with those attending schools such as the University of Michigan, Berklee College of Music, Belmont University in Nashville, DePaul University, DIME, Michigan State University, and others across the U.S. In addition, many of Nikk's students are avid performers, songwriters, theatre stars, and are well-recognized in the music community.
The most important factor to consider when pursuing an education of any type is the relevant knowledge, training, and experience of the instructor to that of the goals and aspirations a student has. With some music facilities, an unfortunate side effect students often find themselves struggling with is a lack of real progress due to studying with a teacher attempting to give guidance that may be a little (or a lot!) outside of their respective field of expertise. This tends to run most prevalent with certain "all-in-one" type music programs that utilize a high volume of short-term and part-time instructors, some of whom may actually be students themselves still finishing school. This model can also create an instability for students by subjecting them to an ongoing list of replacement teachers due to the school or academy's high teacher turnover rate. First and foremost, always make sure your goals and aspirations match the specific field training and credible experiences of the teacher you're working with.
Over the last 2 decades, Nikk has crafted teaching methods that supplement a focused student-centered approach with a strong blend of healthy curriculum, mechanics, and pedagogy, enabling him to provide students with real results that keep them moving forward. Click the bio and teaching philosophy pages for more information on Nikk and how he has successfully coached thousands of students across the country throughout the past 20 years, and is a preferred choice for singers seeking strong vocal guidance and development.
Additional Studio Info
Online Lessons As Well As In-Studio
Students have the option of coming into the studio or taking private lessons virtually using the studio's online teaching platforms. For online classes, the studio utilizes professional level microphones, multi-camera setups, and dedicated equipment designed for online learning. This allows students to experience the same level of quality and efficiency as they would with in-studio sessions, while also being able to study throughout performance touring, long distance learning, or even just from the comforts of their own home.
Competitions and Performance Events: Classes can be tailored to provide students with the best musical preparation for those pursuing competition involvements and/or audition-based opportunities. Such competitions have included various district, regional, national and international events, with organizations such as The World Championship of Performing Arts (WCOPA), American Guild of Music (AGM), MSVMA Solo & Ensemble, Federation, and others. Student involvement with other notable organizations include Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in both their summer programs and international choirs, as well as Interlochen Center for the Arts. Students are also supported in theatre auditions and perform regularly on local stages.
Recitals: Recital participation is not mandatory but is encouraged! Recitals are free of charge to students and take place seasonally throughout the year. Recitals consist of a combination of students in voice, piano, guitar, as well as violin and viola from collaborations with Jennifer Berg Violin Studio. Recitals also include vocal and instrumental ensemble performances featured in the group class "Studio Ensemble" (SE) program.
Fully Equipped On-Site Recording Studio
Private lessons can be tailored to provide students with their very own professional recordings of mastered songs and performance ready material. Students enrolled in the Studio Ensemble (SE) program will experience first-hand what it's like to record live as a group in a pro-grade studio, while building performance set lists for the upcoming concert season.
Additionally, the recording studio provides full-scale production services including composing, writing, tracking, editing, mixing, and mastering, to artists and songwriters.
Acoustically Treated Lesson Space
Other music learning facilities tend to only offer thinly walled and sound reflective multi-purpose rooms for lessons, rather than a professionally designed and acoustically treated lesson space. In addition, they are often focused primarily in younger, pre-school oriented kinder-care types of music education. These programs typically lend themselves to more recreational, loud and distracting background noises, combining with the lesser quality room design and compromising the formal lesson experience for students.
Here at the studio all students study in a clean, spacious, comfortable, and fully equipped studio environment so there's no need to worry about distractions from noisy lesson rooms or crowded hallways. All students and clientele enjoy an exclusive private studio experience without the noise.
Violin Lessons & Viola Lessons
In collaboration with Jennifer Berg Violin Studio
Violin lessons and viola lessons for beginning, intermediate, and advanced students in a focused, studio setting with regular performance opportunities. Offering complete training in both classical and contemporary stylings, along with appropriate technique, theory, pedagogy, and full certification in Suzuki methods. Holding membership in American String Teachers Association (ASTA), as well as Suzuki Association of the Americas (SAA), tenured membership with Ann Arbor Symphony (A2SO) and Flint Symphony (FSO). Click here for more information.
Students enjoy working with both studio performance and stage resources, learning everything from proper mic technique to acoustic balance, and learning how to "sing to the room".
Local, National & International Students
The studio hosts training and instruction services to a student base across the U.S. as well as internationally! With a clientele that ranges from professional artists to aspiring young students, the studio maintains active connections through various teaching networks and performance organizations spanning the globe.
Specialized Studio Instruction
Move beyond generalized music lessons and into a specialty studio with Nikk May. Providing advanced vocal and instrumental training for students in voice, piano, and guitar, as well as artist development through songwriting/composition and audio production. Study the essential techniques of industry professionals, build understanding through mechanic concepts, and learn how to unlock your abilities to excel as a performer.
For new vocal, piano, and guitar lesson requests please fill out a New Student Application.