TC234: Turning the pedagogy of music on its head with Will Baily - Top Music Co
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TC234: Turning the pedagogy of music on its head with Will Baily

By Tim Topham | Podcast

Mar 26 2021

Will Baily turns the pedagogy of music on its head by pivoting to recreational music-making philosophies and student-led learning, from a very classical approach to teaching and it has made an incredible impact on him and his students.

Our guest today, Will Baily, is a piano teacher and composer. His publications include the “Way Cool” books which use his unique approach to teaching either one-on-one or groups.

In this episode, Will talks about the story of how and why he transitioned to this unique approach; the effectiveness and benefits of his current approach to both kids and adults; 4 key tools students can use to play the music they love; and so much more in between.

  • [02:20] A peek into the life of Will Baily.
  • [04:25] Will talks about his studio.
  • [05:21] How he started his musical training.
  • [08:56] The story of how he started teaching.
  • [10:03] The changes he applied to his teaching approach.
  • [13:09] Meaning of recreational music-making.
  • [15:28] Advice for teachers who are unsure of going with the flow of students.
  • [17:20] The effectiveness of his approach to both kids and adults.
  • [21:54] A short summary of Will’s teaching approach.
  • [26:27] 4 key tools students need to play the music they love.
  • [29:21] Measures to assess the progress of students.
  • [31:06] Will shares his experience about being a composer.
  • [34:28] Publications that Will has worked on.

Transcript of the show

If you’d like to download a PDF transcript of this episode, please click below.

Links Mentioned

About our Guest

Will Baily is a piano teacher and composer. He has been teaching piano privately and in groups for over 45 years. He holds degrees in Elementary Education, Music Theory and Composition, and Piano Performance and Pedagogy. He’s currently working with Debra Perez creating group teaching materials for students of all ages.

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About the Author

Tim Topham is the founder and director of TopMusic. Tim hosts the popular TopCast show, blogs regularly at topmusic.co and speaks at local and international conferences on topics such as pedagogy, business, marketing and entrepreneurship. Tim has been featured in American Music Teacher, The Piano Teacher Magazine, California Music Teacher and EPTA Piano Professional. Tim holds an MBA in Educational Leadership, BMus, DipEd and AMusA.

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