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Chetan Tierra is the co-founder and artist-in-residence
 the San Diego Piano Academy 


If you would like to inquire about lessons or to take one of his courses click here.

Mr. Tierra is artist-in-residence of the San Diego Piano Academy which he co-founded with his wife Melissa Tierra. His students regularly win local, national and international competitions and go on to study at top conservatories. Recently, for 2 years running, his students have won first and second prize in the San Diego Concerto Competition. His attention to detail, nuance, deep artistic expression and systematic approach to building a world class technique has made him one of the most in demand teachers in San Diego. 


Along with being a frequent lecturer and mentor to upcoming professionals, Mr. Tierra has also been able to help close to 1,000 students all over the world work towards their musical goals through his online courses. The school’s growing library of video courses, presented by Chetan and his wife, are designed to help musicians of all levels build a flawless foundation, grow their technique and hone their musicianship.


As a private teacher, Mr. Tierra brings students an insight from the highest level while providing patient advice that is tailored to the needs of each student. No two students are alike, and therefore a different approach must be taken with each one. Chetan specializes in giving the essential tools for his students to flourish while providing a love for music and maintaining high standards. Mr. Tierra teaches that music is a cool and rewarding experience and that students deserve to see it that way. He is well versed in many styles of music and is excited to pass these on to his students as well.

"After I started my lessons with Chetan, I rediscovered my passions for both piano and for music as a whole. 


Chetan is an incredible teacher. He is also the most skilled pianist I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with, and I don’t make either of these claims lightly. 


Chetan is more than just a piano teacher to me: he is a mentor, in every sense of the word. He has taught me how to take control of my life and steer it in the direction I want it to go, and he has outlined the exact steps needed to do so. He has been the light at the end of the street through the darkest of times that I’ve gone through, and he has helped me through


After every single lesson, I feel like I have truly learned and grasped something, be it a musical concept or a discipline of life. 


Chetan’s command of the English language is like nobody I’ve ever met: he is able to put whatever abstract concept that you’re trying to comprehend into words that you can understand and apply. And he teaches in the same way. He can make the most complex music and emotions straightforward and applicable, without losing any depth and power.


By combining these two elements, Chetan is able to effectively communicate his skills directly to his students, through lesson plans that provide both structure and creative freedom." - Hahnlin

"Chetan is an incredible musician and teacher. Every lesson with him feels like a masterclass. He is extremely attentive to even the most delicate details, but at the same time he never lets you lose track of the big picture of the entire piece. He gives helpful suggestions, but also leaves room for me to develop my own musical ideas. As a pianist with extensive performing experience, Chetan not only polished my piano skill, but also taught me many other things essential to becoming a musician, such as how to practice, how to overcome performance anxiety, and how to work with other musicians. Thanks to him, I was able to win numerous competitions and be accepted into Richard Goode’s studio at the Peabody Institute. Studying with Chetan was one of the best decisions I have ever made." - Zixuan

"Thank you. You honestly have transformed our lives. In a good way. The love, dedication, appreciation of learning and enjoying this musical instrument is so profound… To tell you the truth, public school education leaves a lot to be desired. I feel so much better as a parent having piano, not just as an enrichment, but something we work on developing everyday. I am committed to doing my best, and it’s truly a privilege. Again, thank you for your guidance." - Jenna F.

“I am so delighted to have you as my music wizard/guru/teacher. My devious plan was to whiz through level 1 before scheduling a consultation with you. With 4 total years of instruction by college music majors, it should all be review, right? Did anyone ever show me how to sit at the piano? No. Hold my wrists? No. Position my fingers correctly? Did anyone ever take a simple piece and insist on correct articulations for every note? NO. What the hell was I paying for? I'm so excited that I'm finally going to learn how this all works.” - Marty

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