Helen Bates

teaching classical guitar
in the heart of Greenwich Village


Music is art — the art that touches the emotions instantly. To make music requires technique, practice, and inspiration. Learning to play classical guitar is learning how to turn your instrument into a voice that expresses not only the music played, but also your emotions.

I have taught and listened to classical guitar for more than 30 years. I may be dazzled by great technique, but I always listen for the beauty in the music and the player. Revealing and releasing that beauty is my goal.

I have worked occasionally with students on instruments other than guitar. Players, regardless of instrument, either make music or they don’t, depending on their desire and determination. But they all need a teacher to bring out their best. I show them how.

Helen Bates with her guitar, New York City, 2012

My teaching method works not only on developing technique but also on developing tone and musicality. The individual needs of each student are incorporated into the lesson.

My students appreciate and make music as they progress. They learn that tone, technique and expression are not simple things, but essential parts of the whole that makes music that rewards and satisfies.

The classical guitar is a beautiful instrument. It is intimate, it touches people, and it expresses the art of music as few other instruments can. I welcome you to explore and enjoy the classical guitar and learn what its music can mean for you.