Gist Piano Center

Nathan Stites

Piano Teacher at Gist Piano Academy

Gist Piano Academy - Piano Lessons in Lexington, Kentucky
Piano Teacher Nathan Stites

Gist Piano Academy

3901 Harrodsburg Rd
Lexington, KY 40513

(859) 254-8492 (Option 4)

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About Me

Nathan received his MM in Piano Performance from the Jacob ‘s School of Music at Indiana University in 2009. After graduating, he accepted a position in the music department at Eastern Kentucky University where he teaches class piano to music majors and serves as a faculty accompanist.  Currently, he is pursuing his DMA (Doctorate of Musical Arts) in Music Education at Boston University's College of Fine Arts. He is also a regular teacher at the Stephen Collins Foster Summer Music Camp where he instructs students in piano performance, music theory and music technology. He has been teaching piano privately to students of all ages, skill levels and backgrounds since 2004.


Education and Background
  • BA, Piano Performance and Composition, Indiana University Southeast
  • MM, Piano Performance, Indiana University (Bloomington)


What I Teach

Nathan's ultimate goal as a teacher is to help each student achieve musical excellence. He believes that no matter what the music or the level of the student, a certain level of artistry and musical quality can always be achieved and should always be the goal. As teacher, he strives to supply students with the tools necessary to make music at every skill level, thus producing the most enjoyable and fulfilling experience for each individual.

Overall Method:

Nathan believes that it is important not to be limited to one single teaching method for all students but that the method should adapt according to each student’s individual needs. These “needs” may vary due to age, skill level, and even personality type. As teacher he will work with each student to determine what style of teaching or method is appropriate for that individual. However, no matter what the method, each student will ultimately share training in the following areas:

Technique - The development of good technique in musical performance will be approached in a variety of ways. Technique books, scales and exercises will help with some of the fundamentals, but Nathan believes that great technique will ultimately come about through the regular learning of new music. He will, therefore, select appropriate repertoire best suited to each student; each new piece will progressively incorporate new skills while continually reinforcing old ones.

Musical Knowledge - Nathan believes that, in order for students to become the best musicians they can be, it is important that they develop a thorough knowledge of all aspects of music. He will work with students to help develop an understanding of music theory, musical periods, styles and genres, as well as the interpretation of different musical works.

Performance Skills - Performing music in public can often be one of the biggest hurdles for any student to overcome. Factors such as nerves, not being well enough prepared, or simply lack of performance experience, can all affect a student’s ability to perform well in public. In Nathan's class and studio, students will develop fine performance skills in a variety of ways. He will teach students effective strategies for overcoming nerves, dealing with memory problems, and becoming confident at their instrument. Students will also have many opportunities to perform in various settings such as master classes and recitals. Master classes will give students an opportunity to perform in front of their peers with some additional instruction by the teacher; this will help students become used to playing in front of others. Recitals will give students an opportunity to perform a well-prepared piece from memory (selected from their individual repertoire) for their peers and family members in a public setting.


Age / Skill Levels Taught
My Associations
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced
  • Ages 6 and up
  • PIE
  • MTNA
Certifications / Awards
  • Nationally Certified Teacher of Music
  • Standard Classical Repertoire
  • Popular Music
  • Jazz
  • Show Tunes
  • Improvisation

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