Music and Theater as an Artistic and Spiritual Practice
Custom Sessions to Fit Your Goals
All Levels Welcome!
Music Technology (Pro Tools / Ableton / Logic / Finale / Sibelius)
Songwriting / Composition
Musical Theater Writing
Music Theory / Counterpoint
Work Feedback - Music / Musical Theatre / Drama
Creative Process Coaching / Writers’ Block Counseling
Fine Tuning Your Style’s Authenticity and Attunement to Your Goals
Integration with Spiritual Practices
Pricing: $90/session (60-90 mins)*
Location: NYC Coffee shops, Brooklyn home studio, Skype, or your home
all ages and experience levels / beginners welcome!
Contact: email@example.com / 901.569.1669
I am very excited to introduce a new teaching service inspired by Awen, a Welsh term that means ‘creative fire’. It is a holistic musical training that reorients learning so that it begins with music’s artistic and spiritual aspects - that energy that makes us want to learn music in the first place. It is totally driven by the specific needs and goals of the person booking a session. It could take the form of technical piano study, learning songwriting, Ableton/Logic, or it could be getting out of writers’ block, receiving feedback about a work, or counseling to manage the creative process.
But whatever the medium, the end goal is artistry, creative power, and personal authenticity. I believe that if we reorient disciplined music instruction around this axis, it will truly ignite something special in the world. This is the process that I have used to write and perform my whole career, and I’m very excited to begin sharing it with others, so that they can unlock something new in themselves.
Q. What exactly is this?
These are music lessons focused on you and your goals. You may want to learn songwriting, making beats and producing, piano lessons, music theory and musical theater writing, or you may want to do a combination of several of these things.
What makes this different from other approaches is that I believe rigorous technical study must be coupled with personal creative unfolding, so that it never becomes lifeless pedagogy. The visceral power that makes you want to take music lessons in the first place will guide the curriculum you follow. Yes, there is repetition required that is much like strength training or yoga, but my view is that if you know why you are doing it, if you are working to unlock something powerful or spiritual or creative within yourself, it is going to give you the engine you need to really succeed in your work and reach your goals.
Everyone is different. You may only want to learn about music technology, or how to play piano. You may only want to work on songwriting. Or you may have different interests and you want to figure out how they feed into each other. The goal of this training is to develop you on several different axes, so that you build up different techniques to flow with your practice rhythms, daily life, and creative evolution.
Q. Who’s it for?
People of any level who want their love of music and creative self discovery to guide the way they learn. You could be someone who has never played an instrument but wants to learn how to write songs. You could be a professional who needs a feedback session on your work. You could be someone who is working to break out of writers’ block, or a songwriter looking for new techniques to tap into your creative imagination.
It’s my goal to let your unique talents and interests guide the way your sessions unfold.
Q. I’m a musician / writer / professional - what services do you offer?
There are several types of creative consulting that we can explore:
evaluating your work at a deep level to make sure it is lining up with your specific goals - artistic and business-wise
zooming in on your style and develop it to be more authentic or attuned to what you want to express
helping with creative trouble spots and offering friendly advice for your process
navigating out of writers’ block
looking at your work from a spiritual or metaphysical perspective
investigating new practices to expand the use of your creative imagination
giving critical feedback on specific work
This is for writers, composers, playwrights, songwriters, and performers who are looking for something new. We can help align your work with your career goals and spiritual path.
Q. This is sounding kind of fluffy what with all the talk of inspiration and creative unfolding. Just teach me some solid technique.
Trust me, creativity is nothing but talk without the tools to actually make and execute something artistically. Your lesson style will be based on your personal needs. The main thing is that you come with a desire. From there, we will determine concrete goals and a schedule to reach those goals.
But you also have a chance to work with your ‘right brain’ creativity and inspiration in a deep, scientific, and technical way. Even if you feel uncreative (as I did my whole life until my early twenties), I am convinced there is a way to break through.
Every creative work tends to follow a similar pattern, and my goal is to center technical training around the stages of that pattern.
Q. Tell me more.
I believe there is a way to engage with the creative arts that begins with a reverence for their spiritual properties. Those moments of joy, emotion, and absorption are when authenticity is happening. It may wax and wane as you progress on your journey, but you can train yourself to know when it is happening, and build up a technique to cultivate it in your performance or writing.
I think there’s a way to unlock and foster an exciting, authentic experience of music that’s different for every person, yet I believe universally accessible. And at the core, that is what the training is about.
My goal is that your training is technically deep, creatively powered, and holistic, integrating everything you love about music into a unified practice.
Q. OK but what does ‘spiritual’ mean?
Some may find it helpful to overtly talk about spirituality as it ties in to their creative output - I know it has been the case with my work. And that engagement may be different for every person. If it appeals to you, we can work to incorporate whatever tradition, practice, or philosophy resonates with you. It is bound to come up in some form as you hone your creative process. It could mean something more like ‘changing the temperature of the room’, if that suits your ideas more accurately. The bottom line is that I want to work with you along that axis, whatever form it takes. There is no pressure as well if you would rather avoid this discussion.
*About the Pricing
This is intended to be a service-based practice, and it is a delicate task to balance that with the realities of economics. The closest solution I’ve found is the Buddhist concept of dana - financial compensation as an act of giving. I also believe strongly in the concept of a living wage, especially in the performing arts, with its current structures of survival and funding so imbalanced. The price given is based on careful consideration of what will supply an equitable living wage.
However, if you are someone who has a deep drive to learn - and to work - and are excited by this training, but have financial needs that preclude this price, please reach out. You will be asked to submit a small portfolio and brief statement of why this training is important to you. We will make it work in a way that is possible for you.
Finally, I strongly believe in allowing a session to be the length it needs to be, rather than having an artificial time restraint.
Andrew has taught music technology, composition, songwriting, and theory at Rhodes College and the University of Memphis. He has toured nationally and internationally for composition and performance. His accompanying skills are old enough to vote, his organ skills old enough to drink, and his piano skills have successfully navigated through their quarter life crisis, and they came out pretty well. He holds an MFA in Musical Theatre Writing from NYU, an MM in Composition and Piano Performance from the University of Memphis, and a BA in music from Rhodes College.