About the teacher: Blake Kearney
As a dedicated local dad and long-standing member of this community, I've had the privilege of teaching music at numerous local schools in the South Eastern Beaches and Eastern Suburbs, reaching over 50 schools in Sydney and more than 4,000 students. Ten years ago I channeled this into a singular vision and founded Maroubra Music School, with a focus on early music education for children, particularly aspects of music that enhance social, emotional and cognitive skills in young learners. I also tutor young musicians embarking on performance or academic careers up to degree level, and have mentored students through many successful academic school and Uni scholarships, TV performance and auditions for The Voice, NIDA etc.
Academic and Performance.
I hold a degree in classical music, but my primary area of study is New York Jazz, enriched with South American rhythmic elements, and of course Pop and Contemporary. I am a multi-instrumental musician experienced in both studio and live settings, from orchestral to ensemble. While I deeply value traditional music techniques, I also embrace technology in music education. My studies in sound physics and audio / video engineering allow me to offer instruction in songwriting, digital recording, and animation, preparing modern musicians for a high-tech world.
Educational / Tutoring / Mentoring.
I have extensive experience working with students with ASD, ADHD, anxiety, apraxia of speech & SM. My work in musical linguistics and motor function has drawn the attention and endorsements of occupational and speech therapists, specialist doctors, child psychologists and child psychiatrists who enroll their children in my classes and actively recommend my services. Additionally, my background in performance and the professional sector resonates with screen actors and drama professionals who seek quality musical education for their children.
Academic study areas: Pitch Coding / Cognitive / Improvisation.
Musical pitch is a significant academic focus for me and I pioneered a fun system to teach little kids to develop perfect pitch which is related to early language acquisition so it's a skill that fades in childhood if it is not nurtured. Perfect pitch is where we can hear and name any of the 12 musical notes. It is also a cross-modal memory skill that improves mental agility and ability because it involves the pitch and language areas of the brain.
Improvisation is a central aspect of my teaching mostly because it inspires the students to try without fear of mistakes - there are 'no mistakes' in an impro. Everything is a statement, which is very empowering for a young person. All my students know the command 'impro' which is when they get to 'mix it up and make it up'. Of course there is cognitive science behind this. Improvisation is the ability to quickly rearrange objects to create something new. It is a lateral vs linear approach - both are important and the process is to move seamlessly between 'impro' and 'strict'. It is a higher level cognitive activity involving divergent thinking and demands cognitive flexibility. You can read more here: