Jazz Straszynski

Hi, my name is Jazz and I’m a singer/songwriter from Forest Row (East Sussex).

At the age of 6 years old I started my first instrument, learning the violin. Being able to play violin was the best thing as it allowed me to play independently as well as being part of the School Orchestra. We had School music proms every year where I was able to show case my musical talents playing the violin as well as singing in the school choir.

At the age of 9 I started learning the piano. Piano was something I very much enjoyed and picked up rather well! By the time I turned 10 years old I sat my first piano exam followed by my grade 3 violin exam and that’s when my music really took off!

As well as my love for music I also had a love for children at a very young age. At Forest Row primary school I was a ‘Play-Time Prefect’ in which my role was to play and look after the reception children during their unstructured time, I was very much in my element.

Beginning of secondary school I started the drums, and had my first attempt of composing music.

Playing the drums was the coolest thing at the time, having used pots and pans to bash when I was little then moving onto the full drum kit was a no brainer. During that time I also took up the recorder and began organ studies. I actually learnt the recorder with my mum so we were able to play together and create duets which was lovely. I then started performing in local cafe’s trying to get myself out there and sharing my music with others. I soon became the regular pianist and singer performing covers such as Ed Sheeran, Adele, Michael Buble and the late Whitney Houston at CJ’s cafe in East Grinstead as well as Sharpthorne Organic Cafe.

 

My main achievements with performing have been The Ashtock Music and Beer festival in front of over 1,000 people, performing there for the last 4 years running. Winning East Grinstead’s Got Talent as well as an audition for the X factor, and performing at the Regional Finals at The Open Mic UK in Southhampton which lead onto a recording contract, you can find my Debut Album ‘Burning Bridges’ on iTunes.

Whilst finding my feet with public performances as well as juggling all these different instruments, I reached that point where I needed to study grade 8 piano to accomplish my journey. This was a difficult time as there was so much going on especially as it clashed with my academic studies. In the end I was home educated for 2 years to allow myself to do my GCSE’s and AS’s whilst able to really focus on piano.

Once I had completed my academic studies I began an apprenticeship working at Blacklands Farm. I lead children on many activities such as zipwire, abseiling, archery and climbing to name a few. My favourite activity was called Nightline, where I would lead a group of children through an obstacle course blindfolded. They had to work as a group using their senses and communication skills to work their way around the course! I thoroughly enjoyed it as you really got to know the children and see them having fun. I loved working at Blacklands so much that I stayed on after my year and continued to help out with children over the summer.

As soon as I left the farm I decided to start my own career in Piano teaching. I’ve now been teaching piano for 3 years and couldn’t be happier, the thought of sharing my musical gift to younger ones is the best feeling. I have 10 students, youngest is 6 years old and oldest is a parent. I love seeing the children have fun and advance with their music, whether they learn for fun, sit piano exams, or learn pop songs and compose. Music is such an important part of our lives, it’s so powerful, it’s a way of communicating how we feel. Especially for children, I can’t stress how significant music is, their brains are like sponges, they soak it all up and they will grow academically, emotionally, physically and socially.

So here I am today, a Music Bus licensee and I’m very excited to be working with children and sharing my love for music.

See HERE for details of classes.