Hi! I’m Norman Stewart Thanks for stopping by.
I’m Norman Stewart, founder of The Stewart School, soon to be Stewart Schools(.StewartSchools.com ) I’m still editing down 8 movies or so that The Stewart School developed over the last decade. I hope to have them done by October. “The History and Plays of The Theater of Necessity” is slowing taking shape as a chronicle of The Theater of Necessity in Houston and elsewhere. “Toward a Mastery” is still on it’s way and so is “Auditions”. I’m rewriting the poetry collection “Caught in the Trope”. My favorite project in narrative form, other than the trilogy “A Right of Passage” is now the series of stories called, “My Life as an Autobiographer”. I teach private individual students in academics, drama, music, writing on Sundays and Mondays at Heights Guitar Tech on 20th street. 281-787-7733. The new location of the Stewart School in the Heights is projected to be ready in late Spring 2018.
Yes, I’m a playwright and a professional stage director and a movie editor, which means I spend LOTS of time alone. I’m also a performing actor and musician and, at times, have LOTS of interaction with the public. I LOVE to teach. I’ve been on hiatus for a year or so and am announcing a new studio for drama-coaching, music lessons, and other small format teaching right here in Houston.
Starting Jan 1, 2014 I will be accepting students at the 3133 Southwest Freeway “Houston Location” of the Fort Bend Music Center.
I started teaching music professionally in 1973. I may be best known for my grasp of music theory and my functional attention to muscle movement for beginner music training. I feel I’ve helped to change the way the world understands how the body works to optimize performance. Sometimes more famous than me, my students have included folks who are rock guitar icons, music professionals with number one hits, students who have graced the front and back pages of national newspapers, the influential, the well-known, those who could well afford any teacher they wanted. I feel honored to have been entrusted with their children and their talents and their confidences and, at times, autistic, aspergers and savant students as well as thousands and thousands of regular folks of all ages who have wanted to enrich their lives with music, drama, or writing (as well as academic tutoring), thought they were incapable of musical/artistic expression, were in a musical rut, had not had lessons for decades and thought it might be too late, or needed teaching through the beginner and intermediate levels to specialized expert level instruction.
I began playing classical guitar in Germany when I was 5. My first professional performance was when I was 13. I am a composer and playwright, a publisher and a poet of some renown under my own name and various pseudonyms. My book of guitar pedagogy, “Toward a Mastery” will be available in the near future. I teach the arts, teach theater, having done my graduate work at The University of Houston, and writing, having also attended Washington University in St. Louis, Webster College, HB Studios in NY, as well as music theory, performance, composition, arranging and songwriting. I founded The Stewart School, an institution dedicated to learning by doing c.1990 which now has shifted its institutional focus from music to movie production.
As well as guitar styles from progressive to classical, jazz and blues to folk and rock with a personal special interest in improvisation teaching, I also teach a modified Suzuki method for the Piano, most stringed instruments including, bass, double bass, banjo, mandolin, dulcimer, ukulele, tenor guitar, tenor banjo, 7 and 18 stringed guitars, zither, hammered dulcimer, charango, and many others. I have also taught wind instruments, drums, accordion, celtic and minstrel harp, synthesizer, and from the viol family, like violin and cello. I believe students of any age can benefit from the exposure to music that lessons provide. My most famous music teacher was probably Lenny Breau but I have enjoyed the mentorship of Ntozake Shange, Donald Barthleme, William Goyan, Claude Caux, Sidney Berger, William Hickey, Al and Lil Nichols, Dusty Williams and his parents and many others.
I LOVE TO TEACH and I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the influence Dr. Eric Cupp had on my teaching style with his “Blessing” It made a profound difference in the way I taught several decades ago. I started in Germany, where the teaching style seemed to expect perfection and concentrated on informing the student about divergences FROM that expected perfection, the “mistakes”, so to speak. Dr. Cupp made me begin to see that many, maybe most students, do much better with a progressive stacking of successes. There are maybe 300 things a student must learn to reach proficiency. What good does it do to list some of those things that aren’t being performed when the student doesn’t even know what proficiency feels like? Concentrating on the things the students, of all ages, are doing correctly, seems much more efficient and fun to me. I love fun, but to me the most fun is to witness progress toward something beautiful.