Piano Teachers

Catherine West

Cat West is very proud to be a Suzuki piano teacher! Having commenced her piano education with the Suzuki Piano Methods at age 6, a life-long love of the method commenced young and stayed with her for life. Cat believes the encouraging and rewarding Suzuki Method is a truly wonderful piano education experience. Having learned violin, and voice also, piano was the instrument that she decided she would focus on and that she would love to teach! Cat is due to complete her Suzuki piano teacher training this year. She knows how important music education is for the brain and the soul, and she is very excited to share her love of music with students and families.

Jesika Clark

An accomplished musician, Jesika Clark relishes any opportunity she has to perform, as a vocalist or instrumentalist. While completing her honours in Music Performance of Classical Voice at the University of Melbourne she performed in Rossini’s William Tell (Victorian Opera) and Dialogues des Carmélites (MCM). Her teacher and mentor is Suzanne Johnson. Jesika has also performed at many prestigious events with the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Choir under celebrated conductor Andrew Wailes including the Melbourne Cup, the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, the Olivia Newton-John Charity Gala, the Prime Minister’s Olympic Gala and the Melbourne ANZAC Day Dawn Service.

Aside from performing, Jesika loves to share her musical knowledge and passion with her students. She began her studies in piano with Yamaha Music Education and under the tutelage of Peter Hurley was awarded her Associate of Music Diploma in 2017. She has accompanied many school choirs and accompanies for AMEB and music scholarship exams.

Maddy Bryner

Madeline Bryner grew up as a Suzuki piano student under the guidance of Nehama Patkin. At the age of 14, she travelled to Barcelona with Patkin to perform in the Palau de la Música. She has since acquired an Associate Diploma in Music (AmusA) from AMEB. Madeline has accompanied Vox Synergy choir for two years as part of Melbourne Youth Music, where she worked under the wings of Kate Sadler, Cameron Menzies and Rebecca Lang. She also plays violin and composes music for all instruments.
 
Madeline has also completed a Masters of Primary Teaching at The University of Melbourne. She has taught at Sholem Aleichem College and Bialik College, where she focussed on teaching languages with a mix of traditional methods and always aimed to incorporate music in the classroom.
 
She now teaches the Suzuki method to piano students. The Suzuki method is associated with the Mother-Tongue Approach, in that every child effectively learns his mother tongue, through encouragement and love from the family. Along with care and growing up in a nurturing environment, every child has the ability and aptitude to learn an instrument.

Mishael Figueira

Mishael has been performing in musical theatre, choirs and bands for over 25 years.  She has performed many roles including Cosette in Les Miserables, Laurey in Oklahoma and Rapunzel in Into The Woods.  Although she has only been teaching full time for the past 3 to 5 years, Mishael has provided vocal lessons for over 20 and is heavily involved with choirs, producing productions for her church and The Australian College of the Arts (Collarts), which is her alma mater.

Working with children and teens to help them discover their music potential is one of her greatest joys, and seeing the look on children’s faces when they meet a musical goal is one of her greatest pleasures.

Peter Hurley

Peter Hurley has had a broad and lengthy career contemplating aural training. During a 25 year period, he has been involved in primary, secondary and tertiary music programs as a teacher, assessor and curriculum developer. Peter is currently lecturer in Aural Studies and Topics in Musicology – Music Theatre and Cabaret at the University of Melbourne. He continues to be involved in curriculum development and as an assessor with the AMEB, the VCAA and the Yamaha Music Foundation. Peter has also lectured at the VCA, Box Hill Institute, Melba Memorial Conservatorium, the VMTA, and the Suzuki Talent Education Association and continues associations with these institutions. He is currently engaged in post graduate research in audio cognition, specifically relating to pitch and memory. Peter is one of our wonderful senior  teachers here at Music Works Magic teaching traditional piano, Suzuki piano theory and aural musicianship as well as voice and musical theatre.

Yukiyo Hidaka

As a qualified Suzuki piano teacher, Yukiyo is very passionate about Dr Suzuki’s philosophies in music and personal development.  After completing the Suzuki teacher training course she has continued her self-development under the guidance of one of the most experienced and knowledgeable Suzuki teachers.

She takes pride in her calm and patient approach to teaching and sets achievable short term goals tailored to varying student abilities to ensure continued progression in the long term.  

Yukiyo is dedicated to building a solid technical foundation for her students and teaches with a goal of nurturing children into outstanding individuals who love and enjoy music for the rest of their lives. As well as listening and playing skills, Yukiyo also introduces music reading in addition to the Suzuki program at an early stage as she believes it is vital to learning music.

Her own children were introduced to Suzuki piano at an early age. With this first-hand experience as a Suzuki parent coupled with her Suzuki teaching qualification, she knows the ins and outs of what it takes to foster a young individual into a fine musician.