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Peggy Newhall, Piano Teacher, Annandale


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Peggy is one of the most wonderful people I know. An older, one might even say "elderly," churchgoing woman, she recently lost her beloved husband Dick, and is going through a personally difficult time. She taught Matt, my son, a mixture of classical and jazz piano for several years, and I recommend her highly for anyone in the Annandale area looking to give their child a good - but not necessarily a high-stress - piano education. Lessons are one-on-one at her house, and they're only about $30 plus expenses - super inexpensive.

Peggy is a good pianist, but she's an even better human being. She is gentle and kind, and while she doesn't "crack the whip" on her students, she does instill a love of music that will last a lifetime. If you want to raise your child to be a young, competition winner, then you should probably look elsewhere; if you want to raise your child to genuinely love and appreciate music into adulthood, Peggy is your answer.

This year, I finally moved Matt onto Anna Balakerskaia, head of keyboard studies at George Mason, because he had begun to advance beyond Peggy's skill set, and Peggy was the first person to come out and say, "yes, he needs it." That, right there, says a lot.

Mrs. Newhall is one person I will always remember, and will surely think of from time to time. She's patient, yet (gently) strict when she needs to be, with a modified-formal classical background and an eagerness to help her students, one at a time ... that defines Peggy. All of Peggy's students I've seen (mostly polite young men and women in their pre-teens or teens) care for her very much.

For a beginning or intermediate student, if you're in the area, do not hesitate to call her. (I'll get the details of the contact information later). For a hard-charging future concert pianist, think about Anna (and be prepared to pay dearly).

[NB I also have enthusiastic recommendations for all sorts of people, and hope for everyone else to do the same. I'll separate them out by city and specialty, and hopefully we can develop our own network of specialists.]

"What took you so long, Don?"

"Resistance to change and nothing more."


Don Rockwell

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