I have retained Ms. Ayumi Okada to teach my eight year old daughter piano three months ago. She is pure joy. My daughter was reticent about piano after learning from a teacher who was not a good match for her, and she was ready to give up music entirely. Ms. Ayumi quickly showed her all that was joyous and magical about music, and she quickly went from a reluctant student to a very diligent one who never shirks her practice schedule. Ms. Ayumi is so kind and so positive, and really listens to her students. She works hard to find pieces that will make her students happy. We are very blessed to have her in our lives. I am indebted to everyone at Willan Academy for sending her our way.
>R H, a mother of a 8 year old daughter, takes piano lessons with Ayumi
My daughter had been taking guitar classes with Kenji for the past 5 years.His unique way to engage a child into the music benefits every day!
My little musician gained a lot of confidence, knowledge & ability to play guitar & sing along thanks to Kenji’s special, individual way of teaching every student.We are very lucky & thankful to know him.
>Anna, a mother of a 11 year old daughter, takes guitar lessons with Kenji
“Both our daughter (5) and son (4) have taken classical guitar lessons with Kenji for the past 9 months. Kenji is a wonderful teacher: patient, kind, creative, and reliable. He’s a joy to have visiting our home each week. We haven’t had classes with the other teachers, but have enjoyed experiencing their work at the recitals. A real NYC gem!”
> LC B, a mother of a 5 year old daughter and 4 year old sun, takes guitar lessons with Kenji
“My daughter has studied guitar with Mr. Kenji for four years and continues to amaze friends and family with her increasing skill level. I give full credit to the expert, kid-friendly, and always age-appropriate instruction she receives. The best thing about this school is the number one ideal: that the kids enjoy playing music. This is stressed (mostly to the parents lol) above all else. Performing at a recital is just “sharing with everyone what you’ve learned,”and I can honestly say that the parents who send their kids to this school are a warm and friendly group who are genuinely supportive of everyone’s musical journey.
As a result, this academy is churning out some pretty accomplished young musicians. It is amazing to watch not only my own daughter, but all of the other students progress from plinking out Twinkle Twinkle Little Star as toddlers to playing complex pieces in only a few short years. I would highly recommend Willan Academy if your child is interested in learning the guitar, and loves music.”
> Karen, a mother of a 8 year old daughter, takes guitar lessons with Kenji
“…. my kids feel confident in their growing skills, play beautiful classic and contemporary songs, and have acquired concentration habits that will serve them well in the future, whatever the setting. Finding Kenji has been a gift to our family.”
> Yolanda, a mother of a 9 year old son and 5 year old daughter, takes guitar lessons with Kenji
“My son has been studying guitar with Kenji since he was 3.5 years old. He’s 7 now, and a confident, growing classical guitarist who regularly writes his own songs. Kenji is an incredibly skilled and patient teacher, and has always struck a perfect balance between moving my son forward with new and challenging material, and helping him to refine his own songwriting. Kenji himself is an extraordinarily talented and disciplined classical guitarist–an example for his students of what’s possible with dedication and practice. I am excited for this expansion and am certain that the teachers Kenji has brought on to teach other instruments will be absolutely world class.
> Jason, a father of a 7 year old son, takes guitar lessons with Kenji
“I can’t express with words what an amazing experience this has been for my son. He absolutely loves the guitar class and teacher. The students learn very quickly in a no-pressure fun and hands on environment. Kenji, my son’s teacher has always been beyond magnificent. I highly recommend this school for any family/children who might be exploring music classes…”
> Anthony, a father of a 9 year old son, takes guitar lessons with Kenji
“Kenji is an amazing guitar instructor! Fortunately, when I was looking for a guitar instructor for my daughter, my neighbors recommended Kenji. Not only is he musically talented, he also works so well with children! He is extremely patient and encouraging. Kenji provides a nurturing yet challenging environment for his students. His love for music is contagious!”
> Lisa, a monther of a 12 year old daughter, takes guitar lessons with Kenji
“Our two children (9 and 4) have been taking Suzuki lessons with Kenji for over 5 years now. Our older boy now plays a varied repertoire that includes both classical and pop/rock pieces and easily switches between classic and electric guitars.
Our 4 year old daughter started last November (she was still 3 by then) and now plays a good number of pieces such as “Lightly Row”, “Song of the wind”, “May Song” and “Twinkle” with impeccable technique. What’s more, She is starting to read music and has known the musical alphabet without even known how to read English yet.
Kenji’s masterful use of the Suzuki method combined with his natural gift for working with children have taken us through many happy moments during lessons, practice at home and recitals.
Willan is an extension of all the dedication put into teaching music from very early ages. We are absolutely positive that our two children are happier, more engaged and sensitive in part thanks to the time that they have spent taking lessons there. “
> Alejandro, a father of a 5 year old daughter, takes guitar lessons with Kenji
“Willan academy provides an extremely supportive environment for children of all ages to learn a musical instrument. Both of my sons age 11 and 6 are learning guitar from Kenji….”
Scott, a father of a 12 and 5 year old sons, takes guitar lessons with Kenji
“Highest recommendation for Willan Academy of Music and for our instructor, Kenji Haba. There are already several other families who take lessons at Willan Academy due to our raves about the excellence of this school. Kenji’s dedication to music and to his students shows in everything he does. Our daughter has been taking guitar lessons with Kenji for about a year, and he is always the consummate professional, clearly a talented musician himself, and also a wonderful mixture of patience and discipline for our daughter. She looks forward to her lessons eagerly, and Kenji has an amazing way of keeping her on track and focused during the lesson, despite the fact that she is a very bouncy, often un-focused kid. He also makes the time truly fun and enjoyable. He has a gentle humor and playfulness that really engages the students, but also a quietness and respect for the music and his students that keeps the kids focused and taking the music seriously. He has all sorts of clever, fun games and activities to coax our daughter to play challenging pieces of music, work on her drills (like scales), assure she’s maintaining good posture while playing, and more. Honestly, I marvel at Kenji’s amazing way with children. And the recitals are truly enlightening, a real showcase of kids (and a few adults) who are clearly learning and loving music. These aren’t the usual cookie-cutter events where many kids play the same pieces over and over, but instead, joyful celebrations of music, where we get to hear the students play songs of their own choosing from all genres of music; some of the kids even play their own — impressive! — compositions. We have also met and seen one of their other teachers at the performances, and she also seemed to have a lovely way with the kids and to elicit confident, happy playing from her students. Highly recommend this music school. “
> Dara, a mother of a 7 year old daughter, takes lessons with Kenji
“Our exposure to Willan Academy has mostly been through its founder, although we have seen the fruit of some of the other teachers he has brought on through Willan’s delightful recital series. My willful daughter is now following in the footsteps of my energetic son in taking guitar classes, and we’ve been very happy with the flexible and tailored approaches to teaching them music. As a practical matter, the option to have lessons taught at home, without any schlepping of instruments or kids, is worth its weight in gold.”
>Schuyler, a father of a 6 year old son and a 4 year old daughter, takes lessons with Kenji