“We really think we got lucky to have Grace as J__’s first piano teacher! She gives her the basics and encourages her to explore, so each class is full of joy and challenges. She’s very patient and gentle, and always gives J___ a comfortable space to try and make mistakes until she can successfully play the whole piece. After the lesson June would play for hours at home spontaneously, and even try to learn a few new pieces on her own. We are thrilled to see how she enjoys learning and playing the instrument.”
“She teaches my boys through lively activities, and makes them like piano playing. She is super patient and graceful, every student likes her a lot. The start of the lesson for both of my sons with zero experience is not too big, she began with the fundamentals like posture, approaching the piano, how the piano is laid out. Now they can play many songs with two hands. My older son said: Grace makes him feel he is good at playing. My young son said she is the greatest pianist. :)”
Grace earned her BMus at the Federal University of Paraiba, Brazil, and her MMus on a Talent Scholarship at the Hartt School of Music, Hartford University, where she was a teaching assistant.
Grace lived for many years in Brazil, where she was Professor of Piano and Accompaniment at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte, and Piano Instructor at the Sergipe State Music Conservatory. She was first prizewinner of the Bradshaw & Buono International Piano Competition.
Grace is a prolific performer and has released several CDs of solo piano music. She has performed extensively in North and South America, and in Europe with soprano Daniela Danieli, including at the Musikverein, Vienna, the National Academy of Music, Sofia, Bulgaria, and other cities including Berlin, Dresden and Dublin.
As well teaching at Wayland School of Music, Grace has maintained a private piano studio since 2009 and is Piano Instructor at the American Academy of World Music. Her musical interests include pedagogy, sacred music, and historical research.
Coming from a family of educators, Grace Smith-Alves is passionate about sharing music and says, “Above all, I wish to impart the joy of music-making! My dream is that all school aged children should have the opportunity to sing in a choir and learn an instrument!”