Contact Joyce@JoyceJazz.com to describe your particular interest. Please include your phone number for an introductory call.
Point Reyes Music Center Announces a new rigorous hands-on musicianship and ear training program for all ages! This is a basic Harvard College course (and children's prep course) in music skills made available to everyone, uniquely designed for each student's goals and pleasure!
Rolling registration and interviews in progress now for the Youth &
Adults Musicianship and Composition Program ("YAM Comp") offered in two locations: Magic
Flute music store in Terra Linda, CA and Point Reyes Music Center, Point Reyes, CA. Skype lessons may also
be arranged for distance learning.
What is the program?
A rigorous and exciting program for college-prep students (ages
13-18) as well as for adults who want to understand the mechanics of
music at the molecular level.
How much time will it take?
This program takes a minimum commitment of three school years of
intensive lessons and/or classes uniquely designed for each student
and requires 30-60 minutes of attention each day.
When will it happen?
90-120 minute sessions twice monthly in private lessons or classes, scheduled according to the teacher's and
Location will be either at Magic Flute music store, San Rafael, CA or at Point Reyes
Music Center, either during the week or on weekends to allow for
What will it do for me?
Students may use it to strengthen their reading skills on their
instrument of choice, become a stronger choral member, chamber music
player, orchestral musician, conductor, accompanist, music
instructor, prepare for a college music program, or just enjoy the
mental challenge of musical gymnastics.
This program will also to make what is sometimes thought of as dry
material into an exciting journey of developing a keen musical ear
which will make every listening experience come alive with new
Specifically, what will I learn?
Program includes private and semi-private classes (depending on sign
ups and scheduling) in ear training, including hearing and singing
intervals, learning and understanding keys, sight singing (reading
music with the voice without the help of an instrument) using "fixed"
Doh and scale degree numbers, sight reading on an instrument, reading
simple to advanced rhythm notation accurately with counting,
conducting gestures, and on an instrument, harmonic analysis,
counterpoint, aural composition "in the moment" using the above
skills, and score reading while listening to recordings and without
recordings. Additional topics will be added if the student is
oriented toward jazz.
What will it cost?
Tuition will depend on how many topics will be under study. For
example, each topic will take place over a number of weeks. For
example: "Hearing,Reading, Singing, and Creating Intervals" Sept. - Dec.
2012 or Jan. - May 2013, 10 sessions @ $120 per 90 minute session= $1200." A student may
choose to take more than one topic each semester. If that is done,
each topic will be discounted. For example "Intervals (as just
mentioned)" @ $1200 plus "Sight-singing" (a good partner topic) would be 10
sessions @ @$60 per 45 minute class for the added "Sight-singing" class ($600). Each topic would have its
own time length according to the topic. (For example, it is rare that
a person could sit and do sight-reading for 90 minutes, but hearing, reading, singing, and creating intervals
could be suited to the longer session.)
Each student's program will be uniquely designed with its own scheduling and fees.
Who is the instructor?
Joyce Kouffman is an award-winning past Harvard University instructor
(after receiving a magna cum laude degree in multi-disciplinary music
studies as an undergraduate there), who has lived and taught in the
Greater Bay Area since 1987. She moved west to study and collaborate
with eclectic, Academy award nominated composer, Mary Watkins (www.MaryWatkins.net), with whom she has recorded two
jazz CDs, one of which won a "Top Ten Picks" on KCSM radio, the Bay
Area's main jazz radio station. Joyce has recently written and
performed compositions inspired by and read in-person by
world-renowned poets Robert Hass, Linda Pastan, and Jane Hirshfield,
which Hass described as "startlingly intimate..." In the early
1980's, Joyce went to Senegal, West Africa to augment her six years
of study of traditional African drumming with Ibrahima Camara to seek the roots of
American jazz. She studied jazz drums with Alan Dawson (Dave
Brubeck's drummer for 9 years), and big band performance and leading with tenor sax
master Illinois Jacquet. Classical cello was her main instrument in
her early days with teachers from the Boston Symphony. Her classical
music theory, musicianship, and harmonic analysis studies took place
at Harvard under the instruction of Professor Luise Vosgerchian (a
protege' of Nadia Boulanger and acknowledged mentor of Yo-Yo Ma) and in opera analysis seminars with
If I have more questions, how do I contact Joyce Kouffman?
Call Joyce at 415-663-9176 to set up an initial interview.
Registration can be sent by email, after a phone conversation and an initial in-person
session to explore musical background, level of commitment,
financial design, and scheduling.
If I (or my child) does not quite read music with ease and fluidity
yet, will he or she qualify?
Not yet, but he or she may sign up for Joyce's "Beginning
Musicianship Program." These sessions will also be weekend intensives
with age appropriate lesson or class length to help children (ages
9-14 or older) feel more confident with reading music. They will
serve as a supplement to instrumental lessons and will cover topics
that instrumental teachers rarely have time to focus on at length.
When possible, Joyce will collaborate with the instrumental teacher
to set up the best curriculum for each student.
When may we start?
Rolling registration throughout the school year, but
the best time to enroll is in August and December, one month ahead of
What will the homework consist of?
Worksheets, workbooks, audio Cds, emails, YouTube viewing of music
examples, and listening assignments. Average time will be about 30
-60 minutes per day, depending on whether it is written or vocal work.
Will I get to compose my own music?
Yes, the act of composing will be used as one of the numerous teaching
tools with any given topic. Original compositions will also be called
for each semester.
Are there any other advanced programs available?
"Music Arranging, Especially for Overdubbing Recordings on Digital
Home Composing Software"
"Recording Your Original Music onto CD or other Media Using Logic
Audio" includes personal coaching and consultation on microphone
placement, recording overdubs, and mixing.
Also, "Setting Music to Video using iMovie on Mac."
More announcements will be forthcoming regarding these new programs,
however, it is expected that students will be either completely
finished or taking concurrently the YAM Comp. Program before
commencing into the "music with film" program. The instructor strongly
believes in the highest skill levels for creating music for film.