SPECIAL MENTION | Encore 2015 Piano Competition Winners & Participants

SPECIAL MENTION | Encore 2015 Piano Competition Winners & Participants

I would like to take a moment to mention and re-congratulate some of the students that were inspired to showcase their music at the 2015 Kiwanis Music Festival last year. It is not an easy feat — getting up to perform within a formal setting in front of an audience and a panel of judges. The dedication and diligence, that was displayed by each student during preparation for their piano competition, are undeniable, as well as their passion for music and desire to share what they’ve learned.

Our 2016 piano competition winners and participants will be announced very soon. Best of luck to those that are preparing for their upcoming performances!



Arek Sarmazian
2nd Place Award — Piano Solo – Grade 1 – Studies/Etudes (“Relay Race” – Jon George)
First Class Honours — Piano Solo – Grade 1 – List B

Talar Sarmazian
First Class Honours — Piano Solo – Grade 4 – List A

Jada Carlton
1st Place Award — Piano Solo – Grade 4 – List A (“Minuet in G Major” – Christian Petzold)

Curtis Cheng
2nd Place Award — Piano Solo – Grade 7 – List B (“Sonatina in C Major, 1st movement” – Muzio Clementi)


Kiwanis Music Festival 2015

AREK SARMAZIAN (2nd Place Award – Grade 1) and JADA CARLTON (1st Place Award – Grade 4)

Kiwanis Music Festival 2015

CURTIS CHENG (2nd Place Award – Grade 7)


Competitors or not, Piano classes have consistently shown big rewards in life for those studying the art, so while not every student in our North York Piano Studio  

is actively participating in competition we do suggest it be some all students experience at least once to get full experience of their efforts.


Thanks and again congrats to everyone who made the results possible.




North York Piano|Performance & Becoming a Better Player

North York Piano|Performance & Becoming a Better Player

North York Piano Lessons

How performance help make you a better piano player

Piano performance provides an opportunity for students to showcase and share what they’ve learned. It can be a fun and truly rewarding experience, whether it’d be an informal performance in front of friends and family, a recital among fellow students or a formal presentation in front of an audience at a festival or competition.


The benefits are very fundamental to becoming a better piano player in many aspects, especially for young students.

north york piano kids performance


Piano performance motivates students to work towards a set goal. They learn what it means to complete the task of preparing a piece(s) from start to finish, and finessing it for a poised performance. Students are never as self-motivated as when preparing for a recital or presentation. They take ownership of their pieces and therefore become more focused, attentive to teachers instructions, and results-oriented.



They learn what “making music” means: it’s not as simple as just playing through the notes from beginning to end. To be a performer is to be an entertainer — to artistically express and communicate the mood of your piece to the audience, through carefully selected tempo, rhythm, touch, and dynamic expression. What story are you telling with your piano playing?



The idea of getting up to play the piano in front of an audience can be intimidating for many students, especially those who have never done so before. Thorough preparation, diligent practice, and numerous performance rehearsals, even those in class or at home, can help calm nerves, and provide students with the self-assurance to be more comfortable with playing in a more formal setting. The excitement experienced during a piano performance and the sense of accomplishment acquired afterwards are immeasurable for students and parents alike.


Encore Piano Students

Roy Thompson Hall


At recitals and festivals, a student will be able to experience and become inspired by other performers’ repertoire, whether the levels and musical genres or styles are at similar or varying levels. Music should also be a social activity – sharing it and engaging with others who are also doing the same is a great way to nurture a long-lasting love and passion for music.


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Playing  To Build the Mind | North York Piano Lessons

Playing To Build the Mind | North York Piano Lessons

Piano study produces bigger and better functioning brains, a benefit to people of any age.

Playing piano expands the mind-North york Piano Lessons

A parent would be considered foolish if he or she said that they don’t want the best for their child. Of course you want your child to have every advantage possible. Piano lessons are one of those things that can help a child get a leg up.

This might seem surprising to some. However, numerous studies have proven a connection between music and other factors. Lessons provide much more than just the ability to play piano. They influence many other aspects of a child’s life. What things can piano lessons help with? Here are just a few.

What Piano Lessons Do for Children

  1. Taking piano lessons to children teaches patience.
  2. Taking piano lessons teaches discipline.
  3. Taking piano lessons inspires creativity.
  4. Learning piano promotes the habit of goal-mindedness.
  5. Piano studios provide a relaxing, yet structured environment.
  6. Taking piano lessons strengthens problem-solving ability.
  7. Taking piano lessons helps build confidence in children, especially as they progress in their skills.
  8. Playing piano has been linked to reducing stress.
  9. Playing piano helps increase fine motor skills.
  10. Taking piano lessons helps provide a love for a variety of music.


piano benefits


Why Lessons Are Important

Some children are just naturally gifted when it comes to music. These exceptional few are just able to play and do it well. They still might have formal training, but their natural ability shines through mostly. However, this type of ability is present in only a small minority. Most children need lessons.

Lessons are important because children learn to read music this way. Not only that, they learn each individual key and, later on, learn how to put the keys together in order to create music. They might just play songs that have already been written. They might end up creating something of their very own.

Lessons help children become self-disciplined. They learn to sit still at the piano for an extended period of time. Along with this, patience comes through. Learning to play piano is not something simple. It will take a great deal of patience to learn the instrument correctly. Patience is something that is valuable in all aspects of life.  Lessons are especially important if the child grows up to be a musician.

Parental Concerns

As with anything, there may be some concerns that parents have about sending their child for piano lessons. One is obviously the cost. Piano lessons can be expensive, but think of it as an investment in your child’s future. If that extra money for lessons meant a better college down the road, it would be worth it.

Another potential concern is the child’s safety. These days, you really cannot be too careful. However, you can monitor your child and the instructor. Asking for a background check is not unreasonable. All in all, the benefits of piano lessons outweigh the risks.


As discussed above, having your child take piano lessons provides numerous benefits.

  • Your child’s motor skills can see significant improvement
  • You child learns several traits (patience, problem solving, self-discipline, setting goals) that help greatly in later life.
  • If your child has natural musical talent, lessons will help encourage growth.
  • Happiness levels go up, stress levels go down.
  • Appreciation for music is increased.


You know all the reasons to get your child started with piano lessons. Now it is time to put some investigation into instructors and put some action behind it. You will be glad you did.

Encore Piano Field Trip  |  Disney’s Fantasia – Live in Concert

Encore Piano Field Trip | Disney’s Fantasia – Live in Concert

What a unique experience it was for all who attended Encore Piano Studio’s annual field trip last month to Roy Thompson Hall for the special live performance of Disney’s beloved animated classic film Fantasia. What a fun way to have a piano lesson outside of the classroom!

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra performed a selection of magnificent repertoire from both the original Fantasia (1940) and Disney Fantasia 2000, while the scenes play on the big screen. There were so many memorable moments. Mickey Mouse dabbling in magic in Duka’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, mythical unicorns and winged horses accompanied by Beethoven’s “Pastoral” Symphony, the garden festivities of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker Suite, and much more!

Here’s what the piano students had to say about the show – Elisha paid close attention to the instruments throughout the performance and really felt that the drums and the other percussion did an exceptional job on rhythm. Most students, like Curtis were extremely impressed by the work put in by the conductor and orchestra to synchronize the performance of the pieces in exact timing with the animation from the feature film, which was no easy feat! Ethan commented on how much he enjoyed the scenes with the flying whales as well Micky Mouse with the brooms and buckets. Some students have already started learning piano pieces that piqued their interest from the film in their first lesson after the trip!

We are already looking forward to our 2016 excursion and the next stop on this musical journey!


Encore Piano Students

Students eagerly awaiting the performance to begin!

Orchestra TSO

Disney’s Fantasia Performance with the TSO

Encore Piano Students

Roy Thompson Hall