Piano & Theory Lessons

I get very frustrated at the stories I hear of kids and adults quitting piano purely because of a bad teacher. Have you:
  • been forced to play music you don’t want to with absolutely no discussion about pop/rock/modern repertoire?
  • been taught by a teacher without social skills or a personality?
  • been stuck in method books year after year?
  • been taught that scales are the most important thing to practice?
  • had a teacher with no sense of humour and who clearly hates what they do?
  • been put-off learning piano even though you really like it and would love to learn more?

If you empathise with any of the above, then you’ve come to the right place, because I hate all those things too!!

My name’s Tim Topham and I’m a piano teacher based in Richmond, VIC. I’ve been playing since I was 8 and have been a teacher for more than 12 years. I have an AMusA, BMus, DipEd and MBA and teach students of all ages, styles and experience from beginners to advanced students. I also teach music theory and basic composition. In addition to playing and teaching piano, I have also worked as a music producer (aka “Fourth Nation” – this is one of my remixes on Sounds of Then (Fourth Nation Remix) - Tim Topham) and have done a fair bit of conducting and accompanying for musicals.

Most importantly: I’m fun, I’m very passionate about my work and I know you will have a ball learning with me!

I have been lucky to study with an eclectic bunch of teachers including Rosemary McIndoe, Steve Sedergreen (jazz), Glen Riddle, Louise Robertson-Glasgow (theory) and Caroline Almonte (classical), all of whom have given me a wide experience on which to draw for my teaching and a vast collection of fun and manageable repertoire ready for any level. I pride myself on finding music that keeps my students having fun and wanting to learn and ensure that you get a holistic musical education and an understanding of how music works and even how to compose. Have a look at some of my videos on this blog and on my YouTube channel (links at the top right).

I love teaching adults as well as children and teenagers and I’m happy to work on music that YOU want to learn (as long as the basics are there, of course!). I believe strongly that sight-reading, chord reading, improvising, rhythm and a good ear are vital for playing the piano and I work hard to build up all these skills in my students.

I offer 60 minute lessons as suited to your level from my home studio in Richmond. If you want to experience an enjoyable, in-depth understanding of music from an experienced, professional and dedicated teacher, please get in touch.

Please call or email me if you have any questions or would like to book a lesson.

Thanks,
Tim.

  • http://www.myspace.com/edward.willoughby Scott

    In the last two and a half years learning with Tim, I’ve seen a remarkable improvement in my technique at the piano, strengthened my knowledge of music theory, and even gained entry into a music degree, specialising in music composition!

    I have found lessons with Tim to be very enjoyable and engaging, and he has been able to tailor lessons to my specific needs as a musician. As a teacher, Tim’s greatest asset has been in the flexibility of his approach to teaching, to get the most out of me as a musician and composer. He very easily puts me at ease behind the piano, even when presented with challenges, and his support and guidance have helped in maintaining my motivation to achieve my goals.

  • Maria Umana

    Piano was something I had always wanted to learn, however at 28 years old I felt I was too late in life to start and just the idea of going back to study was incredibly intimidating. However the moment I met Tim I was completely at ease, I had a fantastic first lesson and now 1.5 years later I have never looked back!

    Tim treats all of his students as individuals, recognising that each person has a unique way of learning and has different styles and different goals. There is no ‘one lesson fits all’ method with Tim and I believe this is where other piano teachers fall behind. Tim not only has an incredible skill set, he is a qualified teacher and uses his experience and skills to construct a proper lesson, which is not something many other piano teachers can offer.

    Tim absolutely loves what he does and truly wants to get the best out of his students. I honestly cannot speak highly enough of him as a teacher, a skilled professional and an individual.

    I have learnt more than just an instrument, I listen to music differently, my learning and study skills have improved and I every time I learn something new I feel fantastic at my accomplishments.

    I strongly encourage anyone at any stage of their learning to go to Tim, especially parents who want to increase the chances of their child committing to an instrument long term. I have gotten so much out of my learning with Tim and if there were teachers like this when I was younger I would have stuck to an instrument a long time ago!

  • antoinette

    Coming across Tim was like a breath of fresh air. I had a 9 year old boy who was totally disheartened with learning the piano or music in general. The thought of having to practice was sheer torture, and I hate to admit it, he had been driven to boredom under a previous music teacher. My boy laboured through the same pieces and technical work for a year with a teacher who was far from enthusiastic or inspiring. After sitting for his first grade exam I allowed him ‘to quit’ piano as I really could not bear to see him suffer any longer.

    Fortunatlely, 12 months later I came across Tim. He was vibrant and cheery and enthusiastic and all that I was looking for to reignite my boy’s interest in music. Within a matter of weeks my boy was enjoying piano (and practice) and happily trotted off to weekly music lessons. Tim’s lessons involve a variety of activities, on the spot feed back and encouragement. He is a great teacher with a natural ability to inspire his pupils to be passionate about music. I have no doubt, that had it not been for Tim, my child would not have played another note for the rest of his life. Thanks Tim!

    Antoinette, Zac’s mum

  • Paula

    I can honestly say that Tim has changed the way my son approaches his piano lessons. When he commenced high school 3 years ago, we were all thrilled with his piano teacher. They got along really well, and his progress was conistent. At the end of Yr 7 however, we were told that the teacher was moving to another school. My son was extremely upset and a little apprehensive about having to start all over again with another teacher and different methods.

    He needn’t have worried. During the summer holidays, I received a phone call from Tim, introducing himself. He immediately made me feel at ease, as I knew that my son was concerned about “who he was going to get!!” Once the term started, the feedback from my son was glowing and he really enjoyed his piano lessons. He gained the confidence to be involved in two school bands. This wouldn’t have been possible without Tim’s mentoring.

    Nothing is too much trouble for Tim. He is a dedicated professional, going the extra mile to ensure that my son’s progress continues to grow. This was reflected clearly when we were confronted with the decision to buy a new piano. He met me at the shop and tried all the pianos that we were considering and gave me his recommendation. He continues to give guidance on ways to make piano practice fun.

    Thanks so much Tim. It is a pleasure to have you as my son’s teacher.

    Paula, Sean’s Mum.

  • Rebecca Palmer

    When my (then) 7 year old son, Henry, badgered me for piano lessons, I was reticent. Not because I didn’t want him to learn music, far from it. Rather, I was concerned that a negative, or boring, experience so young may put him off an instrument for life. I needn’t have worried, for we found Tim.

    Henry has been learning piano with Tim for 18 months now, and absolutely loves it. After sitting in on Henry’s lessons for a few months, I was so inspired I started my own lessons with Tim too!

    Both Henry and I have progressed at a remarkable pace under Tim’s tutelage. We learn a wide variety of interesting repertoire and Tim puts a lot of effort into selecting material he thinks we’ll connect with and enjoy.

    Tim’s lessons are well structured, flexible, and tailored to suit the individual student. There is no “one size fits all” approach here. Tim weaves theory, improvisation & composition, sight-reading and technical work into our lessons. His personal style is upbeat, engaging and very encouraging. He is also remarkably patient!

    Tim is a talented, dedicated teacher. His musical knowledge is phenomenal, but arguably more important is his infectious love of the instrument, genuine passion for teaching, and individual commitment to each student’s musical development according their own goals and musical taste.

    I honestly feel I have a supportive, collaborative partner in my musical journey (albeit one that’s massively more talented and knowledgeable than me), not just a teacher I pay for lessons.

    Rebecca

    • http://timtopham.wordpress.com timtopham

      Thanks reb! What lovely feedback :) thanks so much. Tim.

      Sent from my iPhone