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Peter Dickson Lopez

Peter Dickson Lopez

A COMPOSER'S PERSPECTIVE My holistic approach to teaching piano insists on “intelligent” performance grounded in a deep and thorough understanding of how the composition is put together and what makes it work “under the hood”. With respect to teaching composition, I guide the aspiring composer to bring out the muse within by balancing intellect and technique with intuition and emotion. After many years of teaching piano, theory and composition in a variety of situations, I have come to rely on an adaptive approach to teaching which recognizes that regardless of age or experience level, music students are individuals who have different styles of learning, different gifts, different interests, different goals, and different challenges. I have learned to be as creative in teaching as I am creative in composing and performing. Indeed, I have always felt that performing, composing and teaching are inseparable, and therefore I approach each leg of this “holy trinity” with the same care, dedication and joy.

Instrument / Discipline

  • Piano
  • Rudiments
  • Harmony
  • Counterpoint
  • Analysis
  • Composition
  • Theory

Spoken languages

  • English

Specialized in

  • Youth (7-17)
  • Adults (18+)
  • Young Children (under 7)
  • Beginner/Elementary
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced

Teaches At

  • Teacher's studio


  • 1978 - Ph.D. - University of California, Berkeley
  • 1974 - M.A. - University of California, Berkeley
  • 1972 - B.A. - California State University, Hayward

Professional development

  • Chancellor's Post-Doctoral Fellowship - Independent Creative Work and Research at the University of California, Berkeley - 1979
  • George Ladd Paris Prize - Independent Study in Paris, France - 1976

School Associations

  • Music Teachers National Association - National