Is it important for a teacher to perform?

If you want to be able to teach beyond a certain level, yes.

You can’t walk a student through a process that you haven’t gone through yourself.

If you’ve never had the frustration of hitting a wall with a piece, or had a bad case of nerves before a performance, or had equipment go down in the middle of a set, or had to deal with lights in your eyes and still try to play – you can’t help a student deal with those issues.

Here I am onstage with the Joey Stuckey Band in Eatonton, where we recently performed at their new arts center (a very nice facility).That’s Joey’s Roland RS-9 keyboard I’m playing.

Having the ability to play not only classical (I accompany the Macon State Choir, and will be accompanying Rebecca Lanning, a soprano, in in recital at Georgia Southwestern in November) but also church stuff, jazz, and rock gives me a perspective on performing that I can share with my students – and gives me a flexibility to teach not only in a traditional classical vein, but also pop/rock/jazz improv, and even keyboard programming.

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