About Joy Sumyi Lee

Teaching piano is my passion. I love passing on the beauty and love of music to my students. I believe each student possesses a unique gift that should be carefully nurtured, encouraged and developed over time. There’s nothing more satisfying and exciting to me than to see my students grow to realize and treasure their special musical gifts. I believe playing music transforms us and refines our spirit, and that playing piano brings us a lifetime of enjoyment and wellbeing.

I obtained my B. Mus Bachelor of Music from the University of B.C. in Vancouver, Canada and my A.T.C.L. Performer’s Certificate with Distinction from Trinity College of London, England. I taught in Vancouver and have been teaching in Toronto since 1990.

I teach beginners to advanced levels. Students range from age 5 to adults. I love teaching classical piano music along with music theory, improvisation as well as popular music. For budding singers and songwriters, I also teach singing with arranging and playing piano accompaniment together.

My philosophy is to bring joy to learning the piano, to help students discover their interest, style and passion, to help them attain excellence in technique and artistry and to nurture a deep love for music.

I teach on a beautiful 7’ 6” Yamaha Grand Piano in my studio. During the year, I hold small cushion concerts for the very young students and small performance groups for the older students in my studio. There is an annual piano recital where students perform for a larger audience at a local church. We fundraise at these piano recitals to purchase a digital piano for a First Nation’s School each year. These recitals help build performance confidence in students.

My students also have great opportunities to attend and experience live concerts at two local chamber music concerts series, ‘3 in the 6ix’ and ‘ClassyAF’ (for older students and parents), created by my daughters, Talisa and Naomi Blackman. These concerts feature brilliant professional musicians, dynamic repertoires and programs. They’re also affordable as students under 18 can attend for only $5. My daughters’ dream is to make classical music more accessible to students and friends by taking them out of concert halls and bringing them into the west end communities – to a church, a local restaurant and a pub!

Talisa is also passionate about teaching. She teaches in my studio and manages a very full performance career. Talisa began studying the piano with me at an early age of 4 and is now a professional concert pianist performing with top orchestras in North America and Russia. You can often hear her playing in concerts with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Naomi also began studying the piano with me at an early age. She has a brilliant career in marketing, loves to sing, play piano and guitar, and has a wonderful appreciation and love for music. Recently, Naomi was interviewed by The New 96.3 Classical Music radio station on the benefits of studying classical music for her successful marketing career.


Biography of Talisa:


Article on Naomi ‘The Benefits of Studying Classical Music’ by The New 96.3 Classical Music radio station: