FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
When Do Lessons Run?
National Music Academy lessons run according to the NSW public school term calendar. This means that there are no lessons on state school staff development days, or public holidays, and these lessons will not appear on your invoice.
Lessons run from Monday to Friday in Newcastle, and Monday to Thursday in Maitland, from 2:30pm – 8:00pm. Lessons earlier or later than these times are sometimes possible by arrangement.
There are no lessons during school holidays, however make up lessons may be scheduled for the school holidays depending on teacher availability, and we may also run workshops and masterclasses during the school holidays, so check our upcoming events to find out more.
Do you offer weekend lessons?
We currently do not offer weekend lessons. However, if you are interested in lessons on weekends, please fill out the below expression of interest form, and our team will be in touch if there is enough interest to start offering lessons on weekend.
Do you offer a trial lesson?
To try a lesson before commiting to the term, we offer casual lessons (link to casual lessons page). These can be booked in one at a time, with no commitment to the term, so many students book a first lesson as a casual lesson, then proceed to book in the rest of the term as an ongoing lesson.
We also occasionally offer free trial lessons at our Open Days, so like us on Facebook to stay up to date with upcoming events.
If I have more than one child in lessons do I receive a discount?
Yes! If you have more than one child in lessons with us, or multiple members of the same family, we will waive the registration fee for the second student (and any further additional students.
It’s my first lesson, what do I need to bring with me?
For guitar, strings and woodwind lessons – please bring an instrument along with you if you have one. If you don’t have an instrument please let us know when you book so we can organise one for you.
For Drum lessons – please bring drumsticks if you have them.
For all lessons – bring a folder to keep any content from your teacher in. If you have a smartphone or tablet it may help to bring that along also so you can sign up for our lesson content app.
Can parents or a friend sit in lessons on the lesson?
We have an open door policy allowing family or a friend to sit in on lessons if they wish to do so.
Can a guitar be provided at your lesson?
We can provide a guitar for your lesson if you wish. We recommend if you have a guitar at home that you use this in your lessons, however if you are just starting out and haven’t yet purchased a guitar, please let us know upon booking so we can organise for a guitar to be provided for your lesson. We can also organise the purchase of a guitar for you!
What gear/equipment do you use in your lessons?
Our DJing lessons are taught on industry standard Pioneer CDJs and Mixers. If you have your own controller you are welcome to bring this along to your lesson and learn on that instead.
Our Drum lessons are taught on an acoustic drum kit at our Newcastle and Macquarie College Campuses. Due to soundproofing restrictions at our Maitland campus, drum lessons at that campus are taught on an electric kit. We also have a cajon at each campus for cajon lessons.
Our piano lessons are taught on full size electric pianos with weighted keys. Due to noise management issues, we do not teach piano lessons on upright or grand pianos.
What styles do you teach?
We teach every style of music! Our lessons are tailored to the students’ interests and goals, so the styles of music you cover in your lessons will be selected by your teacher based on your goals and interests.
If you are interested in a specialist genre of music or style, please get in touch with us and we can find the best teacher to help meet your needs.
Do you teach students to read music?
We encourage students to learn to read musical notation. This comprises of tablature, music, rhythm and ear training. We do not solely focus on reading notation but combine it with what inspires you to play as part of your learning.
Do you offer AMEB and SUZUKI exams for students?
We offer all kinds of exams if students wish to sit these exams including AMEB, AMEB Leisure and CPM, Rockschool and Suzuki. If you wish to sit exams, please get in touch with our administration and we can help team you up with an experienced teacher for the exam you wish to sit, and organise books and exam fees for you.
Do you teach music theory?
All our students learn music theory in a way that is tailored to their goals and is engaging with their interests and repertoire.
Do all your teachers have Bachelors’ degrees?
Our teachers come from all walks of life, and all have unique qualifications and experience.
Many of our teachers have a Bachelor of Music qualification, or are in their final years of completing that degree.
Some of our teachers also have more advanced tertiary training, such as music therapy, education (primary or secondary), music business or sound engineering qualifications.
However, we train all our teachers in the NMA philosophy and methods to make sure that all our teachers have access to the best resources and know how to provide amazing one on one tuition that is tailored to the student.
We consider our teachers’ experience to be just as valuable as their qualifications, and every single teacher has years of experience in the music industry that they can bring to their lessons.
Do all your teachers have working with children’s checks?
Yes, all of our teachers and staff have current cleared Working With Children’s Checks.
What level and age can I start?
We teach from 5 years old right through to professional musicians who already gig.
We teach all levels and love seeing students grow and achieve their goals. Students who are under five can attend our early childhood music programs.
Can I pay for my lessons week to week?
We have Ezidebit available to all students who want to pay their lesson fees in instalments. Ezidebit allows for 3 or 4 fortnightly direct debit payments to be automatically debited from your account and makes sure that we are always ahead of the lessons in the calendar.
Ezidebit payment plans are easy to set up, and must be set up prior to or at the first lesson of the term.
Unfortunately we cannot accept sporadic cash or direct debit payments.
You can read all of our payment policies here.