Amy's Cello and Piano Studio

Oakland, CA

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About this pro

How does your service stand out?

I studied with the best teachers in America and have performed extensively throughout the globe with amazing musicians. Through many years of teaching and individual practice in addition to the best training and performing colleagues I have come to understand how to inspire people to play their best and the play with ease and comfort, and enjoy the musical universe. I am also an independent small business, working for myself, paying my bills and supporting my daughter in college. That gives you the customer or student the knowledge that you deal only with me and that I am local and not based in some other state. You will know that if you encounter any schedule changes or things that you need to discuss that you will be directly in contact with me. That also applies to payments, I am flexible and offer any number of ways to pay.

What do you enjoy about the work you do?

I get to enlarge people's world and develop their talents. There is something magical when a person young or old has a breakthrough moment of understanding or when this person is able to master something that was previously difficult. I love it when someone is able to take a piece of music and make it their own, to know how to express an emotion or an idea, and feel that sense of accomplishment and mastery even if it is just a scale or a simple tune. I love being able to share the knowledge that I have about music and many things that connect music to other parts of life, history, dance, art, emotions, colors. I enjoy figuring out how each person learns, and how to get each person to become an independent musical thinker. Also, I love to perform and just play music for people, I get to make their days happier and events special and celebratory!
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Oakland, CA 94602

Years in business


Number of employees


Times hired on Thumbtack



9 Reviews
  • Imani M. Sep 13, 2016
    Music Duo Entertainment
    Verified Review
    Amy played for our wedding ceremony. She was prompt and always readily available to answer questions. Overall, great experience.
  • Lucy H. Sep 4, 2016
    A rare and special teacher
    As a professional pianist myself, I think I have a good ability to evaluate fellow musicians. Amy Brodo was kind enough to help me with some questions recently regarding Baroque style; I have never had a more productive lesson, or a better musical experience. Amy's talents, both for playing music and for teaching it, are very rare and special.
  • Chris D. Jul 19, 2016
    Amy is a terrific teacher. An outstanding, Curtis-trained musician herself, Amy brings the exacting precision of high level artistry to her pedagogy, but at the same time makes it fun. She is a perfectionist with regard to technique and focuses in with laser precision on flaws in bowing, finger position, wrist flexibility, posture and, of course, the myriad elements of musical interpretation. You really feel like you've gotten a thorough work out by the time it's over, yet she's always cherubic! She also makes it seem like a mutual, adventurous discovery, even though it's all got to be cello 101 for her--which I appreciate since I'm an older student. She happily shares her vast knowledge, spanning all periods of music from the medieval to the post-modern, and has thoughtful insights on musicology, currents in musical development, even theories of tuning. A talented pianist, Amy can accompany on the piano as well, which is a bonus. But when she accompanies you on the cello, she makes even a beginner sound like a pro. She also speaks excellent Italian! Perhaps the greatest compliment I can add after all this is that I bring my daughter for cello lessons with Amy as well. I recommend her to cellists at any level from beginner to pros just needing an intelligent set of ears.
  • Alexis L. May 5, 2016
    Piano Lessons
    Verified Review
    Amy is amazing
  • Estelle H. Apr 16, 2016
    I was a piano student of Amy Brodo. She was an excellent teacher! She was a very inspirational teacher!
  • Sivan B. Apr 14, 2016
    I originally studied piano with Amy Brodo and then switched to playing the cello. Studying with her is amazing. She teaches great technical skills as well as how to play with expression. She knows about Baroque Performance Practice, so she is capable of teaching pieces stylistically according to when the pieces were written. While teaching she also informs her students about Harmony. Lastly, she is a kind teacher! Go Amy Brodo!
  • PK P. Apr 13, 2016
    Amy has been teaching our daughters - cello and piano - for over the past year. Amy is very professional, and she is attentive, interested, and patient with our daughters. Amy has gone out of her way to encourage our daughters' musical interests. Our daughters always look forward to their lessons. We would highly recommend Amy as a music instructor.
  • Sandy L. Jan 23, 2016
    Cello Lessons (for adults)
    Verified Review
    I loved dealing with thumbtack. They found me a cello teacher very quickly. Amy is an experienced cellist and teacher who imparts her knowledge with grace. I am enjoying my lessons tremendously.
  • Andrew S. Feb 13, 2014
    Amy is a supremely talented musician and a gifted teacher. Even though I'm no spring chicken, she helped me to improve my playing both technically and artistically. Her lessons are an inspiration. Study with her!


What is your typical process for working with a new customer?
Every person is different and each person comes with an individual set of skills and abilities. When someone is beginning cello we start with how you sit, which means figuring out the length of the end pin, the length of the end pin anchor or strap, where and how you sit on the chair. We start with plucking the strings, then learning how to hold the bow and then a little later I introduce the left hand. Some people need to learn how to read music, others already know. As far as the piano goes, if a person is a beginner, we begin by orienting our hands to the middle of the keyboard. We talk about the geography of the keyboard, and immediately I have a little tune that people can play even before learning to read music. Of course if someone has experience all this is different. I like to get a sense of how someone plays if they have had previous training. But as I said, everyone is different and has different skill sets.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
I am a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, afterwards I studied privately with various people, free lanced, then was hired to be assistant principal cellist of the Orchestra del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino in Italy. During my 5 years there, I frequently traveled to Milan to study baroque cello at the Scuola Civica di Milano and toured with I Solisti Veneti. I then became a member of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and played and toured with that group, the Jerusalem Symphony and Israel Chamber Orchestra for four years. Then I moved to England where I studied Viola da gamba and baroque music at the Royal College in London and free lanced throughout Europe. Since coming to the Bay Area of San Francisco, in addition to free lancing with many many groups, I have occasionally taken individual lessons, and observed master classes and have attended lectures. I am also a guest judge for many competitions in the Bay Area and continue to perform as a soloist and chamber music player in addition to free lancing and teaching.
Do you have a standard pricing system for your service? If so, please share the details here.
In general, I believe I am in the middle of the pack with regards to pricing. Some charge more, some charge less. It is a commitment to enter into music lessons, and with me, you get my sincere commitment and focus to each and every lesson and student. In general, 30 minute lessons are $40, 45 are $60, 60 minutes are $80 with some degree of negotiation. I know of very young teachers who charge $110 or 120 an hour, I feel that is a bit too much.
How did you get started doing this type of work?
When I was a young person in high school, I attended the cello class at the New School of Music on a weekly basis. In addition to playing music for 16-20 cellists, my teacher Orlando Cole would bring a young cellist to the class for all of us to listen to, provide suggestions and learn how to teach. I started to teach when I arrived in the Bay Area to supplement my performing activities. In addition to teaching privately, I taught for the Young Musicians Program for scholarship youth at UCBerkeley until that program folded in 2013. In addition to cello, I taught harpsichord continuo, chamber music, cello sectionals, cello orchestra and rhythmic analysis.
What types of customers have you worked with?
I have taught complete beginners as young as five, older beginners as old as seventy, students who are preparing for a career in music performance, amateurs and everything in between. I teach lessons in my home studio, or I can travel to your location up to 15 miles,I also accompany my students on the piano or cello, I will help students prepare for auditions and concerts and can assist in finding instruments. I also photocopy music for students or can purchase music for reimbursement.
Describe a recent project you are fond of. How long did it take?
Lots of performing projects, ask me in person!
What advice would you give a customer looking to hire a provider in your area of work?
Talk to a number of providers, take a couple of lessons from a couple of different providers, find who you connect with on a personal level. I have a lot of experience, have lived in many countries and have taught all levels of students from young children just beginning to graduate level students.
What questions should customers think through before talking to professionals about their project?
They should think whether they are willing to make the commitment to practice at home and to come on a regular basis, cello or piano lessons require some individual work. Also if you are the parent of a young child, can you sit with your child to help him or her practice during the week?