Pianist & Music Educator
Pianist Marcelle Zahra has been described as “naturally musical with a probing intelligence”. Marcelle has been heard in concert venues throughout the United Kingdom as well as USA, Italy and Malta. Past performances include a BBC broadcast of newly discovered folk song arrangements by Beethoven (Edinburgh) and solo performances at the Queens Hall (Edinburgh), Teatro Luigi Mercantini (Italy), Central Washington University Recital Hall (Seattle), Fitzwilliam Museum (Cambridge), Blackheath Halls (London) Haydn Festival Trinity Laban (London) and Malta Arts Festival (Valletta).
Marcelle has graduated from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in London in 2009 with a Master of Music Degree. At Trinity, Marcelle studied with Philip Fowke and Alexander Ardakov. Previously she completed her BMus(Hons) Degree at Edinburgh Napier University and graduated with First Class Honors. Marcelle was awarded the University Class Award Medal from the Music Faculty as the year’s top representative and "in recognition of her outstanding achievements". At Napier Marcelle was under the tutelage of pianist Simon Coverdale and during her fourth year she was selected to study at Central Washington University in Seattle with Dr. John Pickett. Other acclaimed pianists who have been influential and from whom Marcelle received extensive coaching include Martino Tirimo and Gwenneth Pryor.
Throughout her studies Marcelle was awarded numerous scholarships and was generously supported by the Ian Tomlin Napier/Malta Scholarship, the Malta Government Scholarship Scheme, The Janatha Stubbs Foundation and Trinity Laban London Scholarship. Other prizes include first prize at the North London Music Festival 2011 Recital Class where Marcelle was also selected to compete for the President’s Prize and first prize at the Edinburgh Festival Competition 2007 Piano Recital Class.
In addition to her performing career, Marcelle is an enthusiastic and active piano tutor in demand. She currently holds the position of Piano Tutor at Blackheath High School GDST, an independent school in London and runs a sought after private piano studio. Marcelle is also the author and creator of 'Playing with Spike', a collection of 3 music education apps for children.
Playing with Spike
Marcelle is the author and creator of Playing with Spike, music education apps for children aged 6-11.
Playing with Spike is a collection of 3 successive apps that teach the basic fundamentals of music reading and piano playing. All 3 apps contain 5 chapters, each of which features narratives about Spike's musical adventures with over a hundred colourful illustrations. The apps are designed to start the development of the child's music education through fun games that reinforce the content introduced. Games implemented in the apps include drawing music notes and music symbols, clapping rhythms, singing tunes, composing tunes, improvising and playing music tunes on a virtual keyboard. Utilising a playful element, the apps aim to provide a fun and engaging introduction to the child's musical education by turning learning into playtime.
Playing with Spike apps are available to download on the App Store & Google Play.
For more information visit: www.playingwithspike.com
During the past ten years Marcelle has acquired extensive teaching experience, working with pupils from across the age range and whose abilities range from complete beginner up to advanced level. Marcelle draws on thirty years of music education working with acclaimed pianists and musicians in Europe and beyond. She gained a wealth of knowledge on the art of piano playing which has helped hundreds of pupils prepare for Trinity College and ABRSM grade exams, or simply play for fun!
“I believe strongly in tailoring my teaching approach according to each of my pupils' individual needs and helping the pupils reach aims by carefully setting structured objectives, building and addressing a fundamental technique at an early stage whilst making the learning process an enjoyable and inspiring one. I always aim to instil good practice techniques the pupils can utilise at home to help get the agility needed while feeling utmost comfort even through challenging passages. I also give weight and importance to attaining a deep musical understanding which we then apply in the musical interpretation of repertoire and is ultimately reflected in the musical expression achieved.
As a professional musician I find teaching a very rewarding and important part of my career. I am passionate and fascinated about the learning process and I am fully committed to guiding all my pupils to flourish and achieve their absolute potential. Not only do I find great satisfaction in my teaching work, I also see it as a continual mutual learning process, for both my pupils and myself as a musician.”
Marcelle strongly believes in the importance of sharing music and attaining performance experience for both budding musicians as well as advanced players. As part of the service provided at her piano studio, Marcelle organises regular pupils' concerts at a local recital hall where family and friends are invited. The concerts offer a performance platform celebrating the hard work and progress achieved by pupils as well as promoting music sharing.
Marcelle offers 30-minutes / 45-minutes / 60-minute one-to-one lessons at her studio in Blackheath, South East London
To arrange a consultation or for general enquiries please get in touch by filling the Contact Form below
or email Marcelle directly on
Ilona & Phillip Morgan - Parents of 10-year old & 13-year old
"Our two boys started learning piano at school in year 3 with Marcelle. They both picked up the basics quickly and developed a real love of music, enjoying their sessions and always happy to show what they had learned from the latest lesson! They have both progressed successfully through the music grades with lots of support and great preparation from Marcelle, who has always been encouraging, patient, inspiring and flexible. The boys have played in mini-concerts organised by Marcelle to give them experience which they have found invaluable – and which we have enjoyed listening to. Marcelle is a great teacher and highly recommended."
Donna & Ronnell Murphy - Parents of 12-year old
"Marcelle has taught our daughter Rachel from age 5 (beginner) to now age 12 (grade 8 - with a number of distinctions along the way). Marcelle’s tutoring of Rachel has been motivating, child friendly and effective as can be evidenced from the results. The communication with us (non-musicians) has been well organised, accommodating and informative. We have no hesitation in recommending Marcelle as a music teacher."
Cynthia Bonnici - Mother of 13-year old
"Marcelle is an astounding teacher, she gives my 13-year old daughter sensitive guidance during her piano lessons. She adapts her lessons to my daughter's individual needs while utilising a fun and vibrant element during her lesson. Marcelle is always exploring ways to maximise my daughter's potential, by encouraging corrections in a gentle manner and celebrate her achievements with enthusiasm. I highly recommend Marcelle as a piano teacher, she is highly skilled and a true inspiration for my daughter."
Chris Ballard - Adult Pupil
"I’ve been having piano lessons with Marcelle for 4 years now and I really enjoy the way she approaches teaching music. She has helped me shape and hone my piano playing so that I have a much more expressive and discerning ear. She is a calm, warm, caring and patient person who creates a comfortable atmosphere for which learning and enjoyment is maximised. She is an outstanding performer herself which helps when demonstrating musical phrasing, performance etc. I highly recommend her as a teacher for all ages."
Jane Lethbridge - Adult Pupil
"Marcelle is a very committed teacher and is interested in the process of learning to play the piano. This is very important for an adult learner. I have had lessons with Marcelle now for almost seven years and I have found that one of her strengths is in using the lesson to explore how to practice. Marcelle is also not restricted to teaching any particular styles or periods which makes for a wide ranging repertoire."
17.03.18 | Piano Studio Concert | Old Library Charlton House, London | 3.00pm
07.06.18 | Flute & Piano Recital, Boris Bizjak flute | Bakehouse Theatre Blackheath London | 1.00pm
16.09.18 | Music Speaks - a concert embracing Autism | Malta Society of Arts Valletta, Malta | 5.30pm
31.01.19 | Flute & Piano Recital, Boris Bizjak flute | St Olave Hart Street, London | 1.05pm
09.03.19 | Piano Studio Concert | Old Library Charlton House, London | 11.15am
18.03.19 | Flute & Piano Recital, Boris Bizjak flute | Blackheath Halls, London | 1.05pm
13.04.19 | Music from the Heart of Europe | Malta Society of Arts, Malta | 6.00pm
Tickets available on: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/music-from-the-heart-of-europe-tickets-54579504768
09.06.19 | Flute and Piano Recital, Boris Bizjak flute | The Dysart Petersham, Surrey | 7.30pm
Tickets available soon on: www.thedysartpetersham.co.uk
| Tel: (+44) 07709570402