Ms. Mary Mathews

Piano Teacher

SAA Member


Encinitas, CA
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I began piano studies at age 8 after watching my older sister play piano for several years. By that time my ear was trained and I progressed quickly. My first teacher was a church organist who gave me a solid Classical foundation. We used two pianos from the start, so I thought that was the norm. After we moved, I studied privately with a concert pianist, Suzanne Rabaud, a French pianist who had been a child prodigy and made her concert debut at 14. I studied with her several years and then with Denise Hugonnet Johnson who had studied with Nadia Boulanger at the Paris Conservatory. She pushed me on to study with Alfred Teltschick, a concert pianist who had concertized around the world playing duo-piano with his brother. He had studied with Olga Samaraoff at Julliard and made his debut at Carnegie Hall. I had incredible teachers, but in the end I decided to go into Radio-TV-Film (B.S., University of Texas at Austin) and had a career first in television news production and then media production. During the time that I didn’t play much Classical piano, but rather wrote and recorded original music with friends in bands.

As I got older and reflected on my early training, i realized that I had something to give back and started my “back to the piano” training with Dr. Anne Young who had studied with Gyorgy Sebok. I studied my first three Suzuki books with pioneer trainer, Doris Koppelman and also completed Books 4 & 5. I studied theory and composition privately with Dr. Susan Fee who helped me to complete a book of late intermediate-advanced piano music which I had recorded years previously.

I continue to study all facets of music with the best music mentors I can find. In my 12 years of teaching Suzuki, some fine young pianists have been produced…some winning at the state level and some have gone on to be in high school bands or accepted into music college programs. In all my cases of success, it has been the patient commitment of the parents which has made the difference.