Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in music education but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Julia Amisano, Founder of Grace Music Studio NY, located in Brooklyn, NY, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I am a private Singing, Piano, and Acting teacher in person in Park Slope Brooklyn and Online. All lessons are individual and private.
As a Singing Teacher and Vocal Coach:
I teach all styles of music, including Pop, R&B, Jazz, Rock, Musical Theatre, Opera, Choral music, Folk, Blues, Sacred, and Soul. And I teach all levels of singing, from beginner to professional. I teach kids as young as five years old to professional adult musicians who need a vocal coach and everyone in between who wants to sing. My students range from people who just want to learn for fun to professional musicians who want to up-level or who need help with a specific project or show. These could be singer-songwriters, people who want to sing in a choir, people who want to audition for a vocal competition, people who think they can't sing but have always wanted to learn, professional Opera singers, people who want to get into a performing arts program at a College or high school, people who want to audition for Broadway, people who just love music and want to learn how to use their singing voice properly. My favorite challenge is to help those who think they cannot sing or that they are tone-deaf learn to sing well.
As a Piano Teacher:
I teach beginning piano (first three to four years) along with music theory, how to sing and play, and how to accompany. I wrote and published a music theory book for beginners that I use with all my piano students.
As an Acting Teacher and Monologue Coach:
I teach acting for Film, TV, and Theatre to all levels, from beginners to professional actors. I offer audition techniques along with role creation once the student is in a show. I work with anyone who wants to learn to act well.
Tell us about yourself
When I first started teaching, it was not a popular notion that people who were not born with great talent could learn to sing well, but I had a theory that everyone can sing... it's teachable... I have a method, and I think it can work for anyone... I think I can teach anyone... literally.. the cab driver, check out girl, Mom whose kids say "don't sing" when a song pops on. And now, after 24 years, I have done this so many times that it makes me feel fantastic that I have helped so many people achieve that dream. This makes me excited to help the next person and the next. Singing is our birthright... everyone should be able to participate in music.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I have been in business for 24 years this April, and I have helped thousands of people; literally, this time, learn how to sing well. My proudest moments are when a student who couldn't sing at all has his or her first performance where they sing so well that folks ask them, "how does it feel to be so talented." They always respond with I learned this!! Those are my most proud moments.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
Doing everything myself. Me, I have a hard time with technology, so I have to keep learning and not be too hard on myself if it takes me a long time.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
Deliver more than the customer thinks they are going to get... generosity leads to loyal customers. Be honest with yourself about what YOU would pay for your services based on your experience and preparedness (degrees, schooling, etc.), and make your price points in that range. Always be kind (not a doormat) but kind as you stick to your guns about policies. Oh... and HAVE Policies (lateness, payment plans, COVID, etc.) written out and give them to your new clients and have them sign an agreement for them.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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