Who am I?
Hi, my name is David Alexander, and I am a music coach, multi-instrumentalist, composer, and performer. I help people to achieve their unique, individual musical goals, no matter how great or small. These goals include: learning songs they always wanted to play, creating a successful band, playing multiple instruments, winning competitions, sharing music with their family, playing in church, acceptance into top level music programs, being awarded big scholarships, playing advanced level music, being able to compose and write original songs, understanding music theory, being able to improvise and play by ear, becoming a professional musician, etc.
I am blessed to have studied the Alexander Technique, which allows me to provide specialized movement training to my students. This will help them play with grace and ease, avoid or overcome playing related injuries, reduce performance anxiety, gain an edge in competitions/auditions, and create flowing, honest, uninhibited musical interpretations.
I will coach anyone who has a sincere desire to dedicate themselves to making their greatest musical goals and dreams a reality.
The first instruments I played were the pots and pans with wooden spoons, which led to percussion when I entered the 5th grade, and drum set when I entered high school. Soon after, I discovered guitar, which became my main instrument and obsession in college. During freshman year I was a biology major and while I was supposed to be studying science, I would instead sit in my dorm and play guitar most of the day and night. Unfortunately, this caused me to fail out of chemistry (The only course I ever failed. However, 3 years later, I retook the class and passed with a B+!).
I took this as a sign that I was in the wrong major, and after passing the audition, I made the switch to classical guitar performance.
During this period of study, I met the amazing teacher and mentor, Dr. Robert Bedford, who unlocked my potential, taught me to believe in myself, and changed my life forever. He did not only teach me how to practice correctly, or how to play with proper technique. He taught me how to think about music and helped me tremendously improve my playing, and more importantly, myself in every way. In addition, he introduced me to the Alexander Technique, which even further enhanced my musical skills. Lastly, and most importantly, Dr. Bedford ignited my passion for education and inspired me to become a teacher. Unfortunately (again), as fate would have it, he was not my guitar teacher, but my piano class teacher!
So, while I worked on my bachelors in guitar, I studied piano on the side. After I got my degree, I devoted myself to the study of piano with Dr. Bedford and began to teach both instruments in various community music schools.
Now, after refining my teaching skills, I have decided it is time to open a teaching practice that is uniquely my own so that I may truly give back to my students the precious gifts I was given by my teachers.
So, with great pride, I present to you
The Modern School of Sound
My Teaching Philosophy
My goal as a music teacher is to create independent leaders and happy citizens through the study of music. I teach by asking questions to draw out the innate creativity and talent in each student. For the student, this is a process of fulfillment, self discovery, and triumph as they struggle to achieve their unique musical goals. While music lessons are meant to be fun and uplifting, I know that discipline and hard work are also necessary for the student to achieve their goals. That being said, I believe that the students’ self esteem should never be sacrificed in favor of discipline. I hold the well being of my students as absolutely paramount.
My mission is to inspire students through impassioned instruction; facilitating their rapid growth, creating independent learners, fostering their lifelong love of music, and helping them realize their own musical goals, no matter how great or small.
I make learning fun and exciting by selecting music that suits the tastes of the student. I then use that energy to advance their technical skills and expand their understanding of core musical concepts. In addition to piano and guitar, I have also studied percussion, composition, Alexander Technique, voice, and conducting. By infusing piano and guitar lessons with various elements of these disciplines, I further broaden the experiences of the student.
My comprehensive study of the Alexander Technique, a widely used method of movement training, allows me to bring a ‘total body approach’ to instrumental study. My discovery of the Alexander Technique came about in 2005 while searching for a cure for my potentially career ending tendinitis. After making a full recovery, I now use this knowledge to cultivate healthy and natural playing practices in my students.
As a performer, I constantly expand my musical boundaries by collecting a wide range of experiences across multiple instruments and genres. On piano, I made my solo debut in 2012 at the Community Music School in Trappe, PA, where I premiered one of my original compositions entitled Chorale Fantasy, and performed works by J.S. Bach, Beethoven, Liszt, and Rodrigo. On both piano and guitar, my performances in weddings, benefits, church services, and musicals feed my varied repertoire which ranges from Chopin, Berkeley, and Brouwer, to Metallica, the Beatles, and No Doubt. I am also an avid chorister, singing in the New Jersey premier of the opera Elmer Gantry, and for Giuseppe Verdi’s Requiem with the New Jersey Symphony. I have premiered new music by local composer, Matthew Van Dongen, and am currently composing a ballet in cooperation with professional dancer, Rachel Carina from New Jersey Ballet.
I received my B.M. in classical guitar performance from Montclair State University, graduating magna cum laude. Recipient of the Morse Estate Scholarship for academic excellence, I have studied privately with Jason Vieaux, Glenn Lyons, Dr. Robert Bedford, Dennis Chinelli, and the Alturas Duo (Scott Hill, Carlos Boltez). In addition, I have taken master classes with Agatino Scuderi and Dr. David Witten.