At EchoKids, we strive to achieve a fun and open environment, and getting to know our mentors better is one of the best ways of doing this. As a result, we want to allow you to familiarize yourself with our mentors through a series of interviews with them!

At EchoKids, we strive to achieve a fun and open environment, and getting to know our mentors better is one of the best ways of doing this. As a result, we want to allow you to familiarize yourself with our mentors through a series of interviews with them!

Nicole is one of our flute, piano, ukulele and voice mentors. Read on to learn more about her and her musical history and book a trial lesson with Nicole here!


The Musical Beginning: 

Interviewer: “When did you get into music? When did you start private lessons?”

Nicole: “I started doing private lessons when I was 5 or 6 and my first instrument was piano although I was singing at that time. But the first formal instruction was piano and that’s where I started learning to read music. I struggled with the lessons because I felt like I did not have a say in what songs I could learn or what we did during the lessons, therefore this resulted in me not practicing or improving my skills. I did this for 5 years, learned how to read music and play piano but I didn’t enjoy it very much. I enjoy singing and when I got into 4th or 5th grade, they had a chorus in school so I joined that and both the theater and musical theater department. I continued with my early days where I did band and played flute. I liked that - didn’t like practicing but I was less stubborn. 

In middle school I started doing voice lessons in preparation for the district chorus auditions. I did this pretty on and off, and I eventually got accepted into the districts and all-states in high school.”

Overcoming Life’s Challenges: 

In high school, I started having vocal issues - I kept losing my voice and went to the doctor and they told me I have heartburn and acid reflux, which is what caused me to lose my voice. They gave me medication and that made a big difference - didn’t solve the problem but it made a big difference. “I continue to experience heartburn and acid reflux - have been addressing life changes. I’ve been learning guitar and ukulele in middle school, and got back into it during covid.

I’ve been performing a couple times a month (singing) - a goal to perform at least once a month. Experimenting performing alone, duo, or with a band. I have been thinking of different sets - acoustic, more upbeat, incorporating covers and originals, and trying different instruments.”


Interviewer: “As an undergraduate student, what did you major in? And why did you choose to major in this?”

In high school, I didn’t know what exactly but I was into music and I was into english and writing so I combined my passion and became a songwriter. When I looked through music schools, Berklee was the only song that had contemporary songwriting. Everywhere that has music was a conservatory and I didn’t want to write in a classical or jazz way so that’s why I went to Berklee.

I majored in songwriting and when I applied for it, I liked songwriting for sure! Then I thought maybe not? Because I didn’t want to teach chorus, teach band, shout over children, and to this day I feel the same way - I would love to teach songwriting and music theory and other foundations, but the full music group is a lot. 

I declared songwriting and double minored in musical theater performance and musical theater writing. I really liked it, as a minor because I could try it out and dabble. I was able to try different things, and choosing different electives was really cool. 

Interviewer: “What do you do today for a living?”

Nicole: I graduated in May, and my main thing that I do with my time is teaching. I teach all private lessons all remotely, but I’m looking to do online group lessons. Teaching private lessons is my main thing, and I’m trying different things to supplement. I’m performing a little, but not enough to support myself and I’m also interested in writing - general journalism. 

Interviewer: “Do you want to/are you pursuing music as a career?”

Nicole: I feel like I have really grown to enjoy teaching and some of my students and some of the subject matter are really fun. It really depends on the project, etc. Songwriting workshops might be fun. I would like to be signed as a writer, maybe as an artist - but I’m not sure how to get there. 

Interviewer: “Why do you like teaching?”

Nicole: I like teaching because I can share my passion for music and a lot of the teachers I’ve had have influenced my teaching style and I feel like it’s healing to me that I can be the teacher I wanted - and let the students have their own goals and not have my goals imposed on them. For  me, the most important thing is for the students to enjoy what they’re doing and they’re going to stick with it. Retention is really important for me and I think it’s directly related to what the parent’s getting out of it. 

I enjoy seeing my students progress and seeing them be excited when their progress, but I feel like I don’t need to see that to enjoy teaching. Progress is important to me, but even when they’re having a hard time I think it can be enjoyable for me and the student.

To book a trial lesson with Nicole, click here!

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