Piano Teachers

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.

Akiko Skewes

Akiko is an exciting and passionate piano teacher who provides a positive learning experience in which each individual student is able to excel at their own pace. She has taught a wide range of ages and levels over many years. Akiko specialises in tailoring her program to suit the student's needs and learning style.

Having played the piano from a very young age, Akiko has gained valuable experience and knowledge in music performance which she enjoys passing on to all that are keen to learn.

Akiko has completed her Suzuki Teacher Training Accreditation and teaches Suzuki, as well as traditional and AMEB methods, paying close attention to technique and musicality in her lessons.

Akiko is also an experienced accompanist and has performed with all kinds of musical groups; school choirs, wind ensembles, orchestras, AMEB exams, concerts, competitions and eisteddfods.

Currently, she teaches at Mont Albert Primary School, her home studio, and Music Works Magic.

Alon Trigger

Alon is a piano player, composer, arranger and an experienced music teacher. Alon teaches classical piano as well as popular, contemporary and Israeli music. He is a graduate of the Jerusalem Academy of Music {B.Mus and M.Mus} and is currently a PhD candidate at the University of Melbourne.

Furthermore, he has won a scholarship from the America-Israel Culture Foundation and his compositions were performed in several festivals and concert halls (including radio broadcasts) in Israel and in the U.S.

In addition, Alon has experience working with students who have learning disabilities and light autism.

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.

Estelita Rae

Estelita Rae grew up in New Zealand and moved to Australia to pursue a combined music and visual arts degree at the Australian National University which she completd in 2013. She completed the Professional Performance Program at the National Academy of Music in 2014, and has recently complete her Honours degree in Violin Performance at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music. She has experience through years of teaching violin in schools, individually and in groups extending to the tutoring of chamber music through the ANU Pre-tertiary program. Her passion for teaching continues through private tuition at Music Works Magic and at collective lessons at Sholem Aleichem College.

Jesika Clark

Jesika Clark began her studies in piano at the age of four with Yamaha Music Education and is currently under the tutelage of Peter Hurley. She has accompanied many school choirs and accompanies for AMEB exams. She began her vocal studies at the age of 15 and has completed a Bachelor of Music under the tutelage of Suzanne Johnson, majoring in Performance at the Conservatorium of Music, Melbourne. At the University of Melbourne she worked with celebrated conductor Andrew Wailes as a member of the Melbourne University Choral Society, and recently undertook a tour of Europe. Jesika accompanies our Magic Voices Children’s Choir, and is our official concert accompanist. She teaches both children and adults to sing and to play the piano.

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.

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.