Piano Notes – Studio Newsletter February 2015


2015 has been off to a great start! First, congratulations to Meijke Balay-Mickelson for getting First Class Honors with Distinction on his Advanced Rudiments Academic Exam for Royal Conservatory Music Development Program! He got an impressive score of 93! Then on January 17, four students performed very successfully at Inland Valley Symphony Library Recital – Rachel Hong, Noelle Hong, Charys Hong, and Ron Lycan.

The Mozart Birthday Recital organized by Temecula Community Services Department on January 27 was a great success! We had a full house and the audience was largely from the community. We have already been invited back for next year’s celebration!

February Schedule

February is going to be packed with student activities:

Feb 7 – Kelly Rausch will perform at The Royal Conservatory Music Development Program California State Celebration of Excellence Recital at the CAPMT (California Association of Professional Music Teachers) State Conference held at California State University, Los Angeles. Kelly was awarded the highest mark for the state for Level 7 Piano. Congratulations, Kelly!

Feb 7 – the following students will compete at the Southern California Junior Bach Festival held at Temecula Public Library: Shania Jin, Cameron Chang, Noelle Hong, Rachel Hong, Charys Hong, Charmaine Tan, Meijke Balay-Mickelson, Kelly Rausch, Claire Howard, Catherine Howard.

Feb 8 – the following students will compete at the Inland Empire Piano Festival held at Redlands University: Katherine Shepherd, Emma Erickson, Hudson Erickson, Hunter Erickson, Noelle Hong, Charys Hong, Rachel Hong, Meijke Balay-Mickelson, Kelly Rausch, Claire Howard, Catherine Howard, Jeffrey Kim, Shania Jin.

Feb 9 – Meijke Balay-Mickelson will compete in the Temecula Sunrise Rotary Club Music Competition.

Feb 10 – Jeffrey Kim and Kaitlyn Hetsko will perform at the Temecula City Council Prelude Music.

Feb 17 – Catherine Howard will compete in the Murrieta Rotary Club Music Competition.

Feb 21 – Emma Erickson will compete at the Inland Valley Symphony Concerto Competition.

Feb 24 – Katherine Shepherd, Claire Nguyen, Ethan and Abigail Phan will perform at the Temecula City Council Prelude Music.

Student of the Month – Kaitlyn Hetsko

Kaitlyn was born in Newport News, Virginia. She recently turned 10 years old and is a 4th grade student at St. Jeanne de Lestonnac in Temecula. She resides in Murrieta with her little brother and sister (twins, 6 months old).

Kaitlyn has been with Yiyi since she was 6 years old. During that time, she has participated in the National Piano Guild Audition, TVMTA Spring Music Festival, MTAC Sonata/Sonatina Festival, MTAC Certificate of Merit and many studio recitals. She loves playing piano for people, especially her grandparents.

At school, Kaitlyn was recently awarded the Certificate of Excellence at her school for getting straight A’s. She loves all her subjects but especially her Advanced Math class. She is an avid reader and was awarded her schools highest award (Platinum Award) for reading. She has participated in her schools Talent Show for two years now and also performed on stage in their Hip Hop class. She loves to sing in the school choir. She also enjoyed being in the Girl Scouts for 3 years, finishing up her second year as a Brownie.

Kaitlyn received her 1st degree in Black Belt in Yamashita Karate at the age of 8. She will test for her 2nd degree Black Belt this year. In addition, she is currently testing for her 1st degree Black Belt in Multiple Weapons (Bo Staff, Nunchaku, Sai, Tonfa, and Kama). She began training in karate when she was 4 years old and began training in weapons when she was just 5 years old. She loves karate and especially weapons training.

Teacher Comment: Kaitlyn has been a delight to teach. She always comes to her lessons with a beautiful smile. Her progress is steady and consistent. One of Kaitlyn’s qualities that makes her a dream piano student is her attitude towards learning. She has a high standard for herself, and always takes suggestions for improvement graciously. She has done so well in piano since starting as a complete beginner. Last year she got Branch Honors for Level 3 Certificate of Merit and will soon be sitting Level 4 exam. Kaitlyn will be one of a few students I will proudly bring with me to MTNA National Conference this year in Las Vegas to take part in my presentation “Combining Method Books – Accelerated Approach to Teaching Beginning and Intermediate Piano Students.” Keep up the great work, Kaitlyn!

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