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About Dr Louis B.
Louis is a Doctor of music, having trained at King’s College London, the Royal Northern College of Music and University of Salford, alongside other renowned instrumentalists and experts. Aside from teaching, Louis is a professional performer and lecturer, with a book on Middle Eastern music coming in the new year. Recent performance highlights include a national university tour and bookings in Sweden, France and Turkey. In addition to training as a musician Louis has has a PGCE and has taught music to classes and individuals of all ages.
Louis has over 10 years of experience in teaching children, and has expert knowledge of the challenges of learning guitar and other stringed instruments. In his teaching, Louis combines his enthusiasm for music with a genuine passion for people and communication. He values being part of students’ musical journeys and is keen to help them set ambitious but realistic goals. Using innovative and engaging styles of teaching, Louis believes that music should be, above all, about enjoyment.
Louis is comfortable teaching guitar, ukulele, oud and a range of musical lessons; from absolute beginners to advanced students or postgraduates. He is happy to prepare students for graded exams, other music exams, auditions, competitions and general performance.
The focus of the lesson is tailored to meet the needs of the student. Louis always works in dialogue with students to tailor learning to their needs, interests and personality. He strongly believes in the student voice and teaching music practically, but also incorporates theory if the student chooses. Depending on the interests of the learner, Louis has a range of accessible materials when it comes to music notation and theory. His Masters degree in composition and industry experience mean that songwriting and composing are also popular choices, while his knowledge of Arabic music offers unique pathways for learning world music traditions.
Instrumental lessons will focus on learning useful techniques and exploring how to play musically. From the outset, Louis builds in songs and pieces, rather than focusing purely on exercises.
Teaching in Guitar and Ukulele
In guitar lessons we typically focus on:
o Melodies and riffs
o Left and right hand posture
o Clear tone
o Exploring and learning repertoire
o Sight-singing/aural training
o Preparing for performance
Teaching in Oud
In oud lessons we typically focus on:
o Left hand technique
o Risha (picking) technique
o Tone production and quality
o Exploring and learning melodies
o Learning to play from ear
o The maqam system for improvising
Louis teaches a huge variety of genres, focusing on healthy and versatile uses of the instruments he teaches, and has training in pop, jazz, rock, classical music, music theatre and music of the Middle East.
Louis begins lessons with a chat to get to know the student, their expectations and interests, as he likes to plan his lessons in collaboration with students. We then proceed to a warm-up and simple exercises. Depending on the student’s previous experience we will also work on some songs/repertoire that they already know or start learning a new piece. At the end of the lesson we normally briefly re-cap what we have been working on and what to work on in the future. You do not have to bring any materials to the first lesson (apart from an instrument).
Louis is comfortable teaching people of all ages and backgrounds, including people with no previous musical experience, or for whom English is an additional language (he also speaks Arabic).
Louis is conscious to keep the costs for students at a minimum. As far as possible, sheet music and similar learning materials will be provided by Louis as printouts or in digital formats. Students will be expected to bring their own instrument.
Please get in touch if you are interested in signing up for lessons or have any questions.