Piano With Ms. Barnes


Cristina Pacheco Lugo, Reporter

Many students wish to play an instrument. Some just need the Fine Arts credit, even more may feel as if they do not have the ability to commit to perform in a full band or orchestra ensemble. Many have wanted to attempt to learn the piano, yet never had the opportunity given to them. Sahuaro has recently added a piano class for the 2015-2016 wide list of electives taught by Suzanne Barnes who doubles as the choir teacher. Playing since the age of seven, Ms. Barnes is no stranger to the piano. She has taught in piano studios in Tucson, AZ,  Fort Worth and Wichita Falls, TX, elementary schools, and privately from her home.

All of the students’ best interests are put in place within the class, as they are taught to expand and grow as a musician. Some students face troubling performance anxiety, which is a concern for many who may want to take piano.  The class accommodates those by being such a comfortable environment.  Piano class teaches proper performance as well as audience etiquette, and everyone is encouraged to clap with enthusiastic appreciation for what their classmates have learned and accomplished. With all those factors weighing in, it is sure to help anyone come out of any anxieties they had.

There are always students who can’t seem to grasp a concept involved, and may not want to ask for help. With a class that has so much diversity as playing goes, no single student is shorted any opportunities to learn as Ms. Barnes works to ensure everyone go at their correct pace. The piano classes are so popular, Ms.Barnes has an aide, Joseph Benequista, who also helps and checks on students and their learning as he hopes to give lessons in his future.  A goal for the class is to get better books and more instruments because currently the pianos are at a two to one ratio. Even though that is not a major limitation to the class because of the quality of teaching. There is no single excuse that brings the learning opportunities down, not even the difference in playing abilities, it only makes it more interesting!

“When the light bulb comes on, that’s my favorite thing,” Ms. Barnes states. With a teacher who is as passionate and experienced as Ms.Barnes, students in the class receive an amazing opportunity to learn with one of the best.