Testimonials Students and Parents

No adult has ever claimed to be happy about quitting music lessons as a child. It’s important to motivate our kids and sometimes that means a new and motivating teacher. Christiaan Venter inspires our son to practice and makes him look forward to lessons. We recommend Christiaan to anyone looking for a teacher, particularly those wanting to jumpstart lessons after time away from them.

-Dr. Ken Beatty

“I consider being taught by Nova a blessing. She was such a wonderful teacher, and she has inspired me both to continue pursuing a profession and lifestyle involving music, but also to become a teacher myself. Even though it has been three (or more?) years since I have been taught by her, I still fondly remember her. What a great teacher.

She was not overbearing, but she was just the right amount of firm and demanding to force me to expand my comfort zone past doing certain things. I’ve never seen another teacher do a wider variety of things than her. We didn’t always just focus on the technicalities of playing the flute. There was a lot of other branches of music that she helped me get a handle on, as well, like improvisation, sight reading, ear training, and the like. She definitely inspired me to expand my horizons and got me through my very first recital.

Because of her, I’m going to pursue further education at the University of Lethbridge for music and education! She is a great teacher.”

– Julie

“As an adult starting a new instrument I was nervous and self conscious but I was able to get beyond that and try everything Christiaan suggested. His instructions were clear and he was supportive and encouraging. I enjoyed my lessons and I feel I made good progress in the time I spent with him.”

– Teresa

“My high school aged daughter was looking for a flute teacher, as she had excelled in the Royal Conservatory program, but wanted a more rounded musical experience. We were very pleased to find Nova, she provided my daughter with a wider spectre of musicality, from playing duets, to playing her own songs. Nova encouraged the creative side of my daughter, and gave her a well rounded music experience with her flute. I highly recommend Nova as a flute teacher.”

 – Kathy

“I believe that Christiaan’s style of teaching was flexible, and likely adjusted somewhat to the needs of the student–an important ability of any teacher—to recognize and adapt to the needs of the student–expanding interest, enjoyment and learning. A particular teaching style may suit a student at given time in their learning process, and one student may learn better with one style rather than another. Christiaan’s style was perfect for my needs at that time—and one that I would be happy to experience again.

What I found so beneficial in Christiaan’s teaching style was the non-judgmental approach that not only allowed music exploration and innovation, but encouraged it. That was not only good for me as an adult beginner, but has continued to form a basis for my ongoing music development and enjoyment. I learned the value of “getting the bigger picture”—the essence of the music, various music styles, the value of composition, the joy of theory, and improvisation.

I very much appreciated that Christiaan allowed me to bring new (for me) ideas to a lesson and we would work with them and that would lead to other discoveries. Yet there was always a strong sense of being guided and supported. Now, when I start to get musically bogged down or up against brick walls, I think of Christiaan’s teaching style and then find a new path of discovery and renewed enjoyment.

I also found that I could talk with Christiaan freely about music, that is so good for a student who is curious and eager for discovery. He willingly shared his extensive music knowledge and your interest was always sincere.”

 – Veronica

“Nova seemed truly passionate about what she was doing, and it seemed to come naturally to her, like she wasn’t trying hard to be a flute teacher…she just was, and a great one at that! She had a way of explaining concepts, (like the circle of fifths, and other things that I struggled with, at the time), that at the end of the class they seemed like common knowledge- something simple but very useful that would never escape my mind again. She also divided the lesson time very well, that we always had time for everything we wanted to work on, that day; I never felt rushed or bored with what we were learning because we always went at the pace that I was most comfortable with. She really seemed to know what she were doing, and she was able to answer every question I asked. The lessons were really professional, and yet personal. I felt like she was my friend as well as my teacher. Finally, she always taught me things that I never thought to ask about, and I was always above my level. She considered my opinions about what music to learn, and she took time teaching me every piece until I knew it perfectly.”

– Daria

Christiaan was very effective as my children’s first piano teacher.  He knows how to work well with children (my 9 year old son said he was patient!) and he clearly enjoys sharing his love of music with them.  They enjoyed their piano lessons and  I enjoyed seeing their progress each week.

– Wendy

“Nova was the very first flute teacher of Arthur, this is Arthur’s luck as well. She motivated Arthur’s passion to music. Arthur really enjoyed what he learned from Nova, and he tried to practice everyday. We really appreciated Nova’s hard work with Arthur. In his year end report, his teacher said Arthur improved his appreciation on art and music. Arthur missed Nova very much when she moved, and still mentions her and what he learned from her years later.”

– Linda

“Nova, thank you for your years of hard work and dedication to Heather. I am very sorry to lose you, and she was very sad to hear you were moving. Thank you so much for everything.”

– Bonnie

“Amanda really blossomed under Christiaan’s teaching. She really liked him and his style.”

– Bonnie

“Michael was fortunate to study flute with Nova during one summer.  Nova managed, in their short time together, to correct Michael’s technique and to introduce him to some new concepts.  He really enjoyed their study together and found Nova to be a very patient and understanding teacher.  On the basis of Michael’s feedback I would have absolutely no trouble recommending Nova as a flute teacher.”

– Penny

“Christiaan is an excellent teacher who makes a student feel comfortable at lessons, regardless of skill level. He has a great knowledge of music and theory which comes across in his passion and respect for the music he teaches. I always enjoyed our lessons, and what I learned with him kept me motivated to keep practicing.”

– Luke

“We are writing to you to express our heartfelt thanks for Nova’s effort and professionalism. Daria has learned a lot from her, both in terms of technique and music appreciation. She is now on a good path to continue her musical endeavours. She was always looking forward to her lessons, and often said that Nova was “the best music teacher ever.”

– Sergey

“Nova is exceptionally patient in teaching beginners, covering a wide range of techniques and music theory at an appropriate pace for the student to consolidate their learning. Nova’s teaching is organized and structured for a student to work through specific books to improve their techniques. Her year-round lessons also incorporates composition, practice with piano parts, and recordings to help students and parents see progress and areas of improvement. I improved very quickly with Nova, achieving First Class Honours With Distinction for the RCM Grade 2 Examination within 6 months of learning flute!”

– Linda

“After a forty five year hiatus from music lessons I opted to pursue flute lessons with Nova Pon, after considering references and her formal qualifications.  My choice proved to be a positive one.  I found Nova to be a knowledgeable technically, intuitive as to my needs, and creative in her development of tips and exercises to overcome my challenges.  Nova’s positive and supportive approach served to motivate me and keep me focused, which for an adult learner/student can be demanding.   I have no hesitation in recommending Nova as an instructor.”

– Neil