Teresa Dybvig
Dedicated to the integration of heart, mind, body, music, and piano
in teaching, learning, and performance


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  The Well-Balanced Pianist

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Piano Teacher

I look forward to hearing from you if you are interested in lessons in Stony Brook, Manhattan, Chicago, or Denver.
You can read here if you are interested in lessons online.

I enjoy teaching many different kinds of students.  At this time, I teach committed amateur adult pianists, serious high school pianists, pianists who concertize regularly, church musicians, jazz performers, private piano teachers, college and graduate students in performance degrees, and college piano teachers.

Each student's journey is unique.  How we will work depends on why you want lessons -- if you are injured, if you want to work on interpretation, sound, speed and facility, memory, performance anxiety, rhythm, or sightreading.  Of course, most pianists work on all these areas.  I do my best to work with each student's learning style.

All my students have one thing in common: they are eager to work deeply. They may not be professional pianists, but still they are eager to explore their potential as musicians and pianists. Those who perform work on their performance skills as well, using up-to-date resources to achieve optimal performance mindset.

In return, I bring all my expertise to each student, regardless of their aspirations or experience.


"Meeting Teresa Dybvig was one of the luckiest choices in my life."
— Grace Cimaszewski, First Prize Winner, Late Advanced Division, Suffolk Piano Teachers Foundation Competition 2014
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I'm happy to work with you if you're a middle school or high school student who already knows you love to play the piano, and want to learn how to reach your full potential as a musician and pianist. At this time, I am not accepting children who are beginning to learn the piano.

I am also happy to help you prepare for college auditions, which are becoming more and more competitive. It's best if we start this preparation by your sophomore year in high school.


"Teresa's expertise and knowledge of technical matters were invaluable as she led me through an intense and rewarding transformation"
— Tanya Bertram, Ph.D. student, University of California, Los Angeles
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If you don't live somewhere near where I teach but you're interested in working together, you can try lessons online. If you have a hard time believing that online lessons can be effective, then you're like me! I was so worried at first that I put off trying them for a long time after I already had the equipment. However, online lessons surprised me. Sometimes they're even better than in-person lessons, although I prefer to augment them with occasional in-person lessons if possible.

You can also read How to Find and Select a Piano Teacher, which includes tips on how to choose a teacher for your college degree.

"My technique and tone production have improved dramatically."
— Dr. Richard Lange, Coordinator of Keyboard Studies, Northwestern College
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Here are just a few things you may experience in our lessons:

If you are a Classical pianist searching for a deeper connection to the music, I work with you on all aspects of interpretation. My goal is to enhance your understanding of how each composer heard his or her music, and then to help you bring it to life in your unique way. If you are preparing an audition or recital, I help you prepare for all aspects of it, from sightreading, interpretation, and memory, to successful performance. Read about my classical training in my bio.

If you want to improve your sound quality and variety, I give you the tools to connect your forearm, palm, and finger to each key, using fundamental concepts of Dorothy Taubman's approach to piano technique.

If you need to have steadier and more alive rhythm, I work to give you a living pulse encompassing the beat, the measure, the phrase, the section, and the whole piece. We take our cues from movement disciplines such as Dalcroze and O Passo, and musical styles.


"Today I don't even consider myself someone who has dystonia. It is a thing of the past."
— Dr. Mary Ellen Haupert, Assistant Professor of Music, Viterbo University
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If you are injured, I show you how to attain a healthy, aligned balance on each note. Most people can work through a combination of rudiments and repertoire in the genre of your choice. This work is based on the precepts of Dorothy Taubman's approach to piano technique. From La Crosse Tribune, October 1, 1997, page C-1
"In passing on her incredible insights on piano technique, she has taught me how to work past creative boundaries."
— Jason Smukler, jazz pianist
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If you are beginning your piano journey, you have a wonderful adventure before you! You will learn about rhythm, pulse, healthy alignment and movement, music-reading, and problem-solving in music. You will learn a lot about yourself, and develop a world of self-knowledge and self-expression that only music can give. (Please note that at this time I am not accepting children who are beginning the piano).

If you have problems with memory, I strive to build upon your strengths and lessen your weaknesses. We'll work to enhance your emotional, intellectual, aural, visual, tactile, and kinesthetic memory. We might work on theory and analysis, or sing, or engage in other activities which might not seem to have any relationship to memory, but you will improve. All of learning is memorizing -- you just have to learn how to apply it efficiently.

If you choose, you can participate in a learning styles project I am doing with education expert Sarah Church. I am working to apply the Dunn & Dunn learning styles system to teaching and learning the piano. The Dunn & Dunn system measures what kind of situations and cues help you learn your best, using the Dunn & Dunn learning styles model.


"To say that Teresa Dybvig has made an impact on my life is inadequate. It is not excessive to say that Terry changed my life. She gives me the tools to make healthy movements and beautiful music, and she helps me find the courage to have a positive and happy mindset."
-- Anna Reiser, Master's student in piano, University of Wisconsin at Madison
Madison, Wisconsin

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If you want to improve your speed and facility, I show you how to take advantage of your body's natural perfect alignment to balance on each key, and keep that alignment and balance by using efficient movement in every pianistic situation you encounter. This work, based on Dorothy Taubman's approach to piano technique, is always at the service of bringing you closer to expessing the music at your fullest potential -- fast playing is never an end in itself.

If you wish to improve your sightreading, I work to fill in gaps which may be holding you back, and start you reading music with strategies guaranteed to give you success.

If you experience performance anxiety, I'll help you search for the underlying reasons and look for safe opportunities to move toward overcoming it.

Read statements from my students.

If you are interested in lessons, please contact me.

by Sarah H.
My portrait, by Sarah H.