The desire to come to a music lesson has rarely been the issue for Erin Calev's students.
It's having to leave, the Dumont mom says, that poses a problem.
Calev, who is recently opened her first studio on Park Avenue , chalks it up to her teaching philosophy.
"I realized very early on in life and early on in motherhood that a child can learn anything if you make it fun," said Calev, who has more than two decades of experience teaching music.
"I really enjoy working with young kids and I actually sometimes have trouble with them not wanting to leave. Their parents have to pry their hands off the piano."
Calev recently added acting classes to the mix, which she says helps "set kids up with the tools they need to get by in life."
Born a musician, Calev studied voice, piano and organ from an early age into college and began working as a music teacher for the Inge Lake schools in Closter and Norwood in her early 20s.
While working as a cantor at Queen of Peace church in Maywood, Calev was also involved with the choir and youth theater at St. Mary's in Dumont and even worked as a wedding soloist.
Some of her former music students will be helping her teach at the studio.
"Over the years I have developed my own style of teaching," she said. "After studying with many different voice teachers, I picked up a lot of really great ideas along the way."
Calev believes, however, that each student is unique and may require different styles of teaching. She's had student with cystic fibrosis, on the Autism spectrum. Students who have battled cancer and students with vision problems.
"I believe that children are capable of so much if you enable them, give them the tools they need to thrive," she said.
"There have been many students that have filled my eyes with tears during a lesson. Sometimes after a short while of just repeating my words and staying at the same level of playing for a short while, I will try a different approach and it will be like a light switch was flipped on.
"This is why I teach."
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