Music Lessons

All of Mr. Austin’s primary teachers were graduates of the Juilliard School where they studied with Karen Tuttle. Mr. Austin embodies the philosophy of Tuttle’s ‘Coordination’ of musical expression with the appropriate physical gesture(s) and combines it with the Alexander Techniques’ mind-body awareness and habit changing potential in the framework of the Suzuki Method’s naturalistic pedagogy. This approach of scaffolded learning supports the whole child’s potential for multidimensional development. With support from Mr. Austin and parents, children will find learning violin and viola a healthy experience that’s fun and easy.

Research suggests that music participation can benefit students in ways that enhance their academic achievement, particularly in math and biology (Gouzouasis et al., 2007). In early childhood there seems to be benefits for development of perceptual skills which affect language learning and subsequently impact on literacy. Music training in kindergarten improved the development of inhibition control (Bolduc et al., 2021). Music also seems to improve spatial reasoning which is related to some of the skills required in mathematics. Engagement with music can enhance self-perceptions, but only if it provides positive learning experiences which are rewarding (Hallam, 2010). This means that overall, the individual needs to experience success. This is not to say that there will never be setbacks, but they must be balanced by future goals which seem achievable and self-confidence in attaining them.

A solid basis of technique is essential to mastery of instrumental performance. The basics of movement coordination and instrumental technique are the same. The Alexander Technique is an integral part of the curricula at many drama and music schools, including the Juilliard School, the Curtis Institute of Music and the Royal College of Music. A systematic review of controlled trials concluded that AT lessons may improve performance anxiety in musicians (Klein et al. 2014) and a number of studies have shown AT may improve performance in various ways (Davies 2020, Nielsen 1994, Valentine et al. 1995). 

My students often win perfect scores in ABRSM and NYSSMA competitions and enjoy themselves in the process. Professional musicians I’ve worked with report new found ease of playing and increased facility, pitch accuracy as well as enhanced freedom of expression. Many students and professionals have come for help with harmful postural habits that resulted in repetitive strain injury and associated complications.


For students/professionals of instruments other than violin and viola I am generally only accepting more advanced players that have already learned the basics of their respective instrumental technique and want to improve posture, performance anxiety and musicality; or have some kind of injury they would like help with. That said, I often work with various types of instrumentalists, dancers, actors and non-performers as well.

I am currently accepting a limited number of violin, viola and AT students at all levels/ages between my studios in Brooklyn and Basking Ridge, NJ. In some cases I may be available online via Skype. For questions or to set-up an appointment time use the form below:

Rates: $80 per hour lesson; $280 Four lesson package

Sliding scale rates available upon request for artists and cases of economic hardship. Convenient & comfortable location in Brooklyn near the Church Ave. B/Q train and several buses. Ready to book a lesson?