Inessa Khurgel Music

I LOVE MUSIC Art contest

Blair Lee - Essay

Eric Zhu - Drawing

Evan Lim - Collage

Henry Ding - Drawing

Katherine Wu -Drawing

Michael Wu - Writing

Student of the Month!

At Inessa Khurgel Piano Studio, students strive to do their best in their piano learning: they participate in the festivals, competitions, Certificate of Merit program, learn music theory and fulfill their technical requirements. So, to encourage and praise the ones who work especially hard, we will now have a Student Of the Month nominations by teacher. Check out the list of our recent winners!

Stacy Moroz has passed her CM Level 5 theory exam with the highest score: 95%, and will be working hard on her Level 6 during the summer time.  With the beginning of the new school year Stacy will be ready to start Level 7.  Good luck, Stacy!


Even though Jenny and Danny Rosenblit have had their house under remodeling, and for a few months had to live in a temporary place with just a tiny electronic piano, persisted with their piano practices through all these month, and are now happy to be back to their new and improved house and a 'real' piano, with no time lost!  Thank you guys for being so dedicated to music!


Angelika Tsymbler is one of our most dedicated and hard working students.  She never gives up, and follows teacher's written assignment right on the dot!  This helps in getting even the most difficult technical and musical tasks done right.  Good job, Angelika!


Sara has been consistently improving during the last few months, and is taking a Level 4 CM exam this year.  Next year, if she continues her steady improvement she will be ready to jump to Level 6!  Good luck, Sarah!  


Student of the Month for December: Linghao Kong!

So far, Linghao is the only student, who'd taken two 'mock' theory CM tests, with the results of 96% and 97%, respectively.  Great job, Linghao, congratulations on the excellent theory knowledge! 




Student of the month for November: Irina Paykov!

Irina has won an honorary Certificate at the Classical Festival of the MTAC Irvine Branch.   She performed Fantasia in d minor by Mozart, and though she was a bit nervous, had played very musically and with 'technical vigor'.  Good job, Irina!



Students of the month for October: Edward Mostaghimi and Brandon Lee! 

Edward has won the First Place at the Romantic Festival of the MTAC Irvine Branch. He performed Nocturne in c # minor by Chopin.  This is what one of the judges wrote in his evaluation:  'Beautiful, romantic sound, just as Chopin ment it to be!'

Brandon has won the Second Place at the Romantic Festival of the MTAC Irvine Branch. He performed a very difficult piece - Notturno by Edvard Grieg, and played 'beautifully, with a lot of feelings' as one of the judges put it. 

Congratulations, Edward and Brandon, job well done!


Inessa Khurgel's Music Blog

Summer-2011: Summer Recital and Summer Piano Tips!

Posted on August 9, 2011

Summer-2011 is here!

Here are some tips on how to leap forward at your piano studies this summer, and some photos from our End-of-the-School-Year Recital.  Enjoy! 

  *          -giving fun mini-recitals for the family and friends;

*          -having longer and more productive practices, since there is no school;

*          -deciding and discussing with your teacher your music studies goals for the next school year;

*          -considering CM participation, as well as Festivals participation: see my write-up 'Performance          Opportunities' under the Studio tab  (new dates will be posted shortly);  

*          -tuning your piano for the upcoming school year (I have a few good piano technicians if you need one);

Spring Recital-2011

Posted on May 6, 2011

We had a fun and productive spring recital on April 17th!  Afterwards, we had some yummy pizza, talked and laughted a lot!  

Here are some photos (sorry no pizza pictures, it was gone before long! :)             

Next Mozart?

Posted on February 5, 2011

Watch this short video called 'Bluejay: The Mind of a Child Prodigy' about the 12-year old prodigy composer. Amazing!!!...

Get Ready, Set, Play! (CM Test Preparation)

Posted on January 10, 2011

Certificate of Merit Workshops, mandatory for all CM participants:

Saturday, January 22nd, 2:00 -3:00 PM:

Technical / Sight Reading Marathon: Students play scales, chords, arpeggios, etc. in front of other CM participants. Their performance is timed and evaluated by peers and teacher for speed and accuracy. Sight Reading samples will be evaluated for accuracy. Best performances receive awards, and everyone gets something special!

Saturdays, February 5, 12, 19, 2:00 - 3:00 PM:

Theory / Ear Training Boot Camp: Three-part test taking practice.  After each session, results will be checked, corrected and discussed at the next class.  Solution for most common mistakes and how to avoid them will also be discussed.  Ear Training practice is part of all three session.

Participation fee: $40 for four Saturdays.

Winter Recital - 2010 was a lot of fun!

Posted on December 29, 2010

Some Pictures From Winter Recital...

                                                             Brandon and Blair (love the  hats!:))

Brandon and Blair. Love the hats!

      Audience is ready!

            Audience is ready!

Yanela (first recital)

Yanela (first recital)

Alice's Performance

 Alice's performance

Christina (what a spirit!)

 Christina (what a spirit!)

Stacy and Sasha

Stacy and Sasha



Certificate of Merit Exam-2011

Posted on December 3, 2010

CM Exam-2011

Piano Test:   Feb 26 and 27, 2011 

Theory Test: March 5 and 6, 2011

Please understand that there is no way for teacher to reschedule the test date and time; make sure you do not schedule any vacation or other commitment for these two weeks. 

For Level 5 and up, teacher selects students to receive a Branch Honor award and perform in Branch Honor Recital on March 20, 2011.  If you are interested in discussing your child's participation in this program, please read below.

In order to get Branch Honor, you must:

1.      Memorize all pieces

2.      Sight reading “Excellent”

3.      Technique “Excellent”

4.      Repertoire “Excellent”

5.      Branch Honor marks: 5-, 5, or 5+

6.      Theory 90% and up

How to position the hand and the fingers at the piano

Posted on November 28, 2010

How to position the hand and the fingers at the piano

When you play the piano it is very important to properly position your hands, fingers, wrist, arm and the whole rest of your body. A correct position allows playing better, with more facility and naturalness. Besides maintaining the hand and the arm relaxed you can play and enjoy the piano for many hours, without a danger of damaging them.  Moving the fingers in a correct way and positioning the hand and the wrist in the best way guarantees to the pianist the possibility to play very difficult songs, and to make mistakes a lot less. Many piano pieces are impossible to be played if you do not move in the correct way the hand and the fingers.

Here are some general suggestions of piano positions 

  • Straight and relaxed back;
  • Relaxed neck;
  • Take a seat slightly forward, to the center of the instrument;
  • Elbows must be at the height of the keyboard;
  • Feet must be near the pedals, flat on the floor;
  • Arm, forearm, wrist and hand have to be on the same axle to the height of the keyboard.

Importance of Music

Posted on November 28, 2010

In recent years, researchers have looked carefully into the correlation between studying music and intelligence. Although we believe that music is a core subject, and that students should have the opportunity to learn music for its own sake, mounting evidence proves the many additional benefits of a robust music education.

A study published in September 2006 in the scientific journal Brain indicates that young children who received a year of musical training showed improvements in math, IQ, and literacy as well as superior memory when compared with children who did not receive the instruction.

1. The College Entrance Examination Board reports that students of the arts scored an average of 57 points higher on the verbal portion of the SAT and 41 points higher on the math portion of the SAT than students with no coursework or experience in the arts.

2. Music education has benefits that reach well into adulthood too. The National Center on Education and the Economy’s 2007 report states, "The arts will be an indispensable foundation for everything that comes after for most members of the workforce."