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Lesson pay rates

Discussion in 'Orchestral Technique [DB]' started by Theo.Bass, Mar 16, 2009.

  1. I was wondering how much I should charge a student for lessons. I am a pretty advanced senior in high school and the student is in seventh grade. I was thinking around ten bucks for half an hour. Any comments?
  2. thedbassist


    Sep 10, 2006
    If you don't have any ethical concerns, go for 25 for a half hour and then go down from there if you have to(just a joke). Ten bucks for half an hour sounds fine though.
  3. Dbass926


    Jun 20, 2005
    Philadelphia, PA
    It doesn't do anyone any good to undervalue your services. Money can be a motivational tool: Parents don't accept much laziness when they're shelling out 30 bucks a week on lessons. Also, you need to consider where the lessons are taking place - if you're traveling there you can add a few dollars.
    In any case I think 10 dollars is very low, and I remember distinctly that the $10 bass lessons I got were a lot less valuable than the $40 ones.
  4. EggyToast


    Jan 21, 2006
    On the other hand, if you've never taught anyone before, you probably won't be that good of a teacher. Teaching someone else is different from practicing for yourself. To echo Dbass, but from a different POV, you may only be worth the $10 lesson that he thought was less valuable ;D

    You might be awesome at it, too. But as perspective, my bass teacher had an undergrad degree in double bass, was at a conservatory when he was with me, and after graduating from there is now off at yet another school for bass. He charged $22.5 for half hour (well, $45/hour). You're probably not at the same level as he is, so $10 or $15 to start is probably fair. Especially if you might go off to college in half a year, leaving the student to find a good teacher -- aka, if you undercut yourself, you won't screw yourself over in the long term.
  5. I think 10 bucks is on the low side.....I guess it depends on what you think your time is worth.
  6. The double bass is a very difficult instrument to teach. I don’t think that someone without a degree and professional experience should be charging anything.

    I have encountered many students who were victims of unqualified teachers. The damage ingrained early on can be very difficult to repair. The ethical thing to do would be to offer the lessons for free.

    Would you trust a doctor without a degree or experience to perform surgery?
  7. Will Yager

    Will Yager Supporting Member

    May 7, 2006
    Iowa City, IA
    I think $10 is pretty fair.
  8. JoeyNaeger

    JoeyNaeger Guest Commercial User

    Jun 24, 2005
    Houston, TX
    Bass Specialist, Lisle Violin Shop
    If you're teaching at a school, you might need to check what the district limits you to charging.
  9. MDEbass


    Dec 15, 2008
    I would just bump it up a couple bucks to $15 a half hour....not unreasonably high but not too low.
  10. I still think that it is completely unacceptable for anyone without a high school diploma and professional experience to be charging anything over minimum wage.

    What does your teacher think?
  11. anonymous12251111

    anonymous12251111 Banned

    Apr 6, 2007
    Well, think of it like this...If you are still taking lessons, why would someone want to pay you for second hand knowledge? Considering your circumstances I think 10 dollars is probably a very appropriate fee.

    Interesting topic BTW.
  12. StarbucksStew


    May 14, 2009
    Weatherford, Texas
    Ernie Ball Strings
    $10 is fair. In today's economy we have to do what we can to earn money...
  13. anonymous12251111

    anonymous12251111 Banned

    Apr 6, 2007
    Sorry for how long my post was, but yes, considering the posters qualifications I think $10.00 for 45 minutes is fair...Though you could earn a lot more by getting a part time job.
  14. that would put it around 3.50 for a half hour.

    I say 10 is fine, 15 would also be acceptable.
  15. You’re right Calvin. Trying to make money from music isn’t a good idea. You’ll have better luck doing something else.

    Back to pay rates. As an example, in my early years as an undergraduate student I used to charge $10 for a full hour. Now that I have a M.Mus and a hell of a lot more experience, I charge $35/hour.

    Having unqualified teachers charging a similar rate completely undermines everything that many qualified teachers have worked for.
  16. anonymous12251111

    anonymous12251111 Banned

    Apr 6, 2007
    Well, no, that's not what I'm getting at. I'm saying if you're in High School being a "private teacher" doesn't seem very economical as your students would be few and far between. Getting a job at like Starbucks would earn you more.
  17. So I settled on fifteen dollars for half an hour. We have a lesson once a week I think it is a fair amount of money. There aren't any other bass teachers within an hour drive and I think my student is benefiting and improving. Having taken private lessons myself for the past thirteen years, plus masterclasses and summer things, I feel that I can bring some valuable skills to the table. I also feel that I am benefiting as I think about concepts and techniques maybe I wouldnt have thought about. But really, I think fifteen bucks was and is a good amount.
  18. Bassist4Life


    Dec 17, 2004
    Buffalo, NY
    You could ask Paul Ousley at St. Olaf College what he charges. ;)

    Rolf Erdahl over at Gustavus Adolphus College charges $20/half-hour. Here is his resume.
  19. Wang-Chi-Wang

    Wang-Chi-Wang Banned

    May 22, 2009
    levinson charge 300, that not fair, that insane. i go to david moor who is 50 and he better bow technick that levinson, i also here levinson is very meen man
  20. bejoyous


    Oct 23, 2005
    London, Ontario
    OK, "Brandon," knock it off!

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