Setnor School of Music, Syracuse University
Whether creating adaptable life-skills or forming a powerfully beautiful bassoon tone, Dr. Koerner's private bassoon lessons are packed with information and enthusiasm. The underpinning of her teaching relies on a balance of instrument discovery, bassoon fundamentals, reed maintenance and growing the student’s repertoire and listening skills. She understands students' desire to play and perform, and encourages them to bring pieces they wish to learn, to listen to cross-genre works, and learn by-ear and through reading music. These practices have been an integral part of over a decade of bassoon teaching, including in her current role as adjunct bassoon instructor for Syracuse University's for Setnor School of Music. By applying these principles students have successfully navigated their way through a variety of music-related and real-life challenges.
“I loved that we started the year by discussing what I wanted to learn about. It made the entire experience feel like my choice in my education. Many times, that element feels kind of lost, but in our lessons, I always felt that I was gaining knowledge in things I needed to learn in terms of bassoon and things that I wanted to learn, especially in reed making.”
Syracuse Bassoon Student, 2020
Eastman Community Music School
Since 2016, Blaire has been the bassoon instructor at the Eastman Community Music School (ECMS), offering lessons for middle schoolers to adults. Whether the student is taking a New York State School Music Association (NYSMMA) solo audition, wishes to perform on an ECMS recital, is applying to college, or simply wants to play for their family, Blaire encourages each endeavor and assists in anyway she can. For instance, when learning of financial constraints that would prohibit a student from attending college, Blaire partnered with the Rochester Education Foundation to successfully sponsor the student, ultimately gifting her with a $6,500 bassoon. The student's hard work, combined with having her own instrument, allowed her to successfully audition for and ultimately receive a full-ride to a university and major in bassoon.
In addition to individual bassoon lessons, Dr. Koerner has coached a variety of wind chamber groups, from duets to octets. Since chamber ensembles need to rely on each other to guide rehearsals and improve as a group, she has students practice the necessary skills in her class. Together, students work on collaborating as a team, providing constructive feedback, developing acute listening skills, and developing presentation skills to interact with audience members. Currently, she coaches the Honors Wind Quintet, all wind chamber groups for the Summer Classical Studies Camp at Summer@Eastman, and New Horizon chamber ensembles for adults.
“I just wanted to thank you for helping me with my applications for colleges. I have been accepted at Eastman, Juilliard, and Curtis!! I also wanted to thank you for all the guidance you provided in quintet rehearsals, and for sticking it out no matter how obnoxious we were… It was a blast and I really miss it!”
Honors Wind Quintet Member, 2020