Val Letenyei recently opened Music-Everyday in a small commercial building on the Draeger Motor sales site, 15015 Cleveland St.
The piano lesson and Kindermusik studio soon will be expanding with guitar, strings and voice lessons.
“My vision for Music-Everyday is for the studio to provide a wide variety of music classes for people of all ages,” said Letenyei, who recently moved to the area from Iowa.
Letenjei also hopes to share that music with people of all ages.
“Another large part of my vision is to give back to the community by providing music recitals for the senior community to enjoy and events for teenagers to get together and play and write music, let their creativity flow while having fun eating pizza and hanging out in a safe environment,” she said.
On a recent snowy weekday, 9-year-old Isaac Rasmussen of Grand Haven arrived with his mom, Amy, for his weekly piano lesson. Letenyei walked him through the motions for an upcoming recital.
“Everyone is going to clap when you're done,” she told the boy. “Look down at your shoes, make sure they're tied, look up and smile, and walk back to your seat.”
Rasmussen sat at the piano bench, adjusted his posture and hand position, and smoothly played “Darth Vader.”
After praise from Letenyei, she joined him on the piano bench and the two played a duet version of “Go Tell it on the Mountain.” The boy smiled as the last notes rang out.
“She helps kids come to excellence, but she also lets them have a lot of fun,” Amy said as she proudly watched her son. “He gets to pick his own songs. She doesn't make it drudgery.”
Letenyei currently instructs 20 students (four adults) in piano and 17 Kindermusik students. Some of her Kindermusik students are only babies. She teaches the little ones about music with steady beats, rocking techniques and more.
Legenyei said getting kids involved in music early helps their fine and gross motor skills, and can even help teach infants how to walk.
“Rhythm is involved in walking,” she said. “All of these connections really help them develop faster. Music also helps children with math, science and social skills.”
Legenyei, who moved here from Iowa a little more than a year ago, has been teaching Kindermusik since 2004. She started teaching piano in 2002.
“When I was 16, a teacher suggested that I become a piano teacher,” she said. “I laughed. Music was just what I did for fun. It wasn't until I had kids that I discovered teaching music is what I was wired to do.”
Visit www.music-everyday.com for more information.