What the students’ parents say about Hug Music’s music programs


F45C3931   140802KanaKamitsubo_057

“[During the students’ recital] I teared up for nearly every child’s performance. So many brave musicians. Such a beautiful beautiful day. Hug Music is such a gift. We happened in to a class when H was 21 months old, and we are so grateful. Kana and Sasha, you guys have created something so special and inspirational. We bow down to you.”

– Jennifer, mother of H who takes Hug Melody solo (on Ukulele).

“We so love Hug Music and the profound and positive impact you have both had upon E’s development, and ours as her parents! 🙂 We appreciate you both tremendously and value your time, your expertise and kindness.”

– Emily, a mother of 2 years old in Hug Melody 1 class

“Thank you so much for your classes. I feel very fortunate that D’s first class experience was with you both, and that my first class experience as a mom was with Hug Music. Watching D grow and develop through the semesters in a creative, nurturing and engaging setting has been a memorable opportunity.”

– Meredith, a mother of D 1 year old who recently relocated to another city

“My daughter can’t wait! Every day she ask if we are going to music class saying “Kana! Sasha!”

– Christine, a mother of 2 years old child in Hug Melody 1 class

“I just want to let you know how much [my son] loves his music class! He woke up Sunday and said “I want go to music “[his class is on Saturday]. And today while we were getting ready for school he said “I go to Ms. Hannah”. I just wanted to share a beautiful moment with 2 people who made it possible.”

– Mary, a mother of 3 year old who takes music therapy with Ms.Hannah

“Today was B’s last session with Miss Grace and our last day at Hug Music because our family is moving overseas in August. I have been so surprised and happy to see B grow and develop so much since he began working with Miss Grace. When B started music therapy he was reluctant to say anything or even answer questions from teachers and new adults he met. He took weeks to say his own name during the “Hello” song. He gradually came out of his shell, thanks to Miss Grace’s patience, encouragement, and her ability to try different approaches, songs, instruments and activities with him. Now, about 5-6 months after starting music therapy, B is chatting, happy, social, and affectionate; he answers his teachers’ questions in class and is no longer anxious about separating from his parents when it is time for school or other classes. Teachers and other therapists who knew him before and after he started music therapy have remarked on how different he is.

In sum, I am very appreciative of how Miss Grace has helped B through music therapy. He can also now figure out how to play new tunes on the piano on his own, and has developed a true love fore music.”

– Serena (B’s mother)

“Hands down, Hug Music!”

– Shannon, a mother of 3-year old boy

“I am a Juilliard grad and music school owner myself but specialize in private instruction only. [When asked about good early childhood music classes] I send everyone to Hug Music and the kids that return to us afterwards have loved it! Even one of my faculty had her daughter attending until they moved. Have heard nothing but great things about Hug Music”

– Natalia L. An owner of Music School of NYC

“We are sad because we are moving to California… The only thing we miss from Forest Hills so badly is Hug Music!”

– A mother of 1 year old girl.

“Her music class was the highlight of my daughter’s week and we are so grateful she had that experience. She loves you and Sasha and always talks about you and the class. Hug music is one of the things we will miss most about Forest Hills!”

– O, a mother of 2-year-old who recently moved to another state.

“My daughter loves you guys (Kana & Sasha) so much. This morning at 4am, she was saying your name. She loves the class and has learned SO much.”

– Marissa, mother of Sadie, 1 year old Hug Me student.

“My son learns a lot from your class. He sings the songs and plays the games [he learned from the class] with his father at home. He loves the music and his speech has improved greatly from class.”

– E, a mother of 2.5 year old who has been taking Hug Melody group

“I wanted to first start off saying what a wonderful experience my son is having there in the first 2 weeks. Ms. Christine is nothing short of an angel and is doing amazing things for my son.”

– M, a father of 11 year old who recently started music therapy program with Ms.Christine

“My 9 year old daughter J takes guitar lessons at Hugs music and Sasha is her instructor; he is amazing. I highly recommend him.”

– Irina, a mother of a 9 year old daughter, J, who takes guitar lesson with Mr.Sasha

“My son enjoys his classes so much he sings his way home”

– Danielle Y

“You guys do a terrific job!”

– Natt

“Hug Music provided my daughter to find her voice through music”

– Mother D.I. (Mirophora)

“My children love to make music with Ms. Christine. We love how her enthusiasm inspires them to practice and learn”

– J.L. mother of Abigail & J.M.

“Ms.Kana is a patient, creative, caring, outstanding music therapist. Would refer to anyone showing interest in music”

– Jeanne K. , mother of Ethan

“Ms. Kana is very excellent instructor”

– A.G. , mother of Adriana

“Audrey has grown to enjoy piano more under Ms. Kana’s guidance.There is more feeling when she plays now compared to before”

– Ellen C.

“My daughter really enjoys her lessons with Ms. Kana. She loves it and has grown to love music and not just play because mommy says so.”

– Ellen C.

“My son has been a student of Kana’s for several years now. She has taught him music appreciation, discipline and more than anything else to keep believing in himself and never stop trying to do and be his best”

– Kristen D.

“The piano lessons at Hug Music have helped our daughter immensely. Angelina has autism and Ms. Kana has really helped her with her focus, self esteem and appreciation of music. All of this has translated into a stark improvement in her schoolwork.”

– EI and JI

“Music and Ms. Kana  has helped my son to improve his social skills, attention, listening, fine motor skills and most important, his language. Every time my son finishes his piano lessons, I have a happy confident child and I’m grateful that Hug Music has provided a such positive impact on my son. Thank you.”

– Lina

“Every week my son can’t wait to have his guitar lessons with Mr. Sasha. The combination between piano and guitar has improved my son’s creativity, abstract thinking, focusing, self-esteem and kindness. His love for learning has increased as the need to explore new sounds and new rhythms.”

– Lina

“Ms. Christine is very professional and we feel that Elliot is making good progress”

– M

“Ms. Christine does a wonderful job with Alexandra.”

– E.C

“Very, very, very satisfied. Christine is amazing with Gus, very patient and encouraging. Ms. Christine is an exceptional therapist who encourages play and spontaneous improvisation. She is able to meet my son where he’s at and very attuned to his needs.”

–  D.S, Gus’ dad

“Ms. Christine has provided Angelina with music skills that I never thought she had in her. Angelina’s music skills has only gotten better as the years pass thanks to Ms. Christine. Angelina loves Ms. Christine and always looks forward to coming to class”

– Alex P.

“Hug Music program for pre-schoolers helped my son develop study habits and basic math skills for his age in addition to learning music and enjoying”

– Marina, mother of B

“Christine is a really wonderful, warm and  loving music teacher.  I can’t imagine anyone doing a better job of helping my daughter to love and enjoy playing the piano.  Christine gave her the best introduction to piano that we could have hoped for.”

– R, father of A



“Two weeks ago we were getting ready for bed and my 2-year-old son, L, said, “Mama, I love Kana. I love Sasha. I love music class”. My heart melted. That was a testament to the impact you both have made in my child’s life. You guys are amazing and we are so happy to have found you. Thank you both for all that you do”.

– Romana, mom to 2 year-old boy who has been taking Hug Melody 1 class


“Dear Sasha and Kana,

Thank you for giving wonderful classes since Hug Music opened last year. My daughter, E. developed her innate musical ability through your class. What I am grateful the most is that the fact that E. really enjoys music with you and her wonderful classmates. Thank you again!”

– R family (a family of our 2-year-old student for Hug Melody 1)


“Hello Kana & Sasha,

I would like to extend my thanks for the support and influence you are sharing with the boys. For the past two months, every week; the boys are getting straight A+’s on their reports and 100%’s on their tests. Teachers in both schools, keep asking me what exactly I’m doing at home to keep the boys engaged.
At home we are dedicated to work hard every day not just to get a grade but also because we encourage love for learning as part of the education process. At the same time we recognize that MUSIC is also a big part of this influence on them. Thank you, for your support and being an inspiration for the boys. Thank you, for seeing on them talent, uniqueness and strengths. Thank you, for letting them to explore and have fun with Music. Thank you for helping them to focus, to be engaged and most important to express themselves.

With Gratitude,
– C family”


“Kana has helped my son, E, in numerous ways in the four years that he has taken piano lessons with her and first began his formal music education. Kana challenges Ellis with kindness and patience to work hard and do his best, leading him to take pride in what he has accomplished. Kana’s encouragement has helped my son grow in confidence as a musician so that he now often enjoys making up his own pieces and singing along with them. He is now always eager to perform at every opportunity, whether for a talent show at school or camp or just to entertain friends or family. My husband also takes piano lessons with Kana, realizing his lifelong dream of learning to play the piano. Thanks to Kana, my husband and son can now play duets together, whether just relaxing at home or at one of the recitals that Kana organizes, and it fills my heart with such happiness!”

– Eileen, mother of E and husband of R, who are both students

Sasha is the best teacher that my daughter could have… his passion for music and love for teaching together with his smile are so inspiring that learning guitar seems easy!”

– Maryela, mother of a 12-year old daughter

Since my boys started music lessons with Kana, their love for music has grown tremendously. Mrs. Kana’s class promotes not only music, but also self-esteem and confidence. Her creative ways to teach music has inspired my boys to explore new music, new melodies, new sounds and love for the stage!! Every week, the boys are excited to learn something new and they are happy to be part of Kana’s music program.”

– Lina, mother of boys S and E


We have been with Ms. Kana for more than 6 years. It was such a joy to watch our son grow and develop musically and cognitively with Kana’s approach. She challenges her students to perform at their highest potential through understanding and enjoying music. I recommend Kana’s lesson to those who want to see their children being happy and successful at the same time. 

– Maria, mother of David.


My daughter A has been inspired and become more confident and sociable since she started to take music lessons with Kana. I couldn’t have imagined how happy our lives could get by her learning music.

– Denys, mother of A

E. absolutely loves his music and piano lessons with Kana and especially enjoyed the improvisation. Kana is so in tune (no pun intended) with him that she enabled him to produce some fantastic music, way beyond his years. We have had other music teachers and I can say that Kana’s connection to my son is the best.  Also, her comfort level with a variety of kinds of music–jazz, blues, classical, and improvisation– was very unique and much appreciated. Finally, I deeply appreciate how personally committed she is to E.–that is truly extraordinary and a wonderful gift she gives him.”

– Maria, mother of E.

“Words cannot express how happy we are to have found Kana’s music program. We always knew our little girl enjoyed music and we wanted to find a special program that would help contribute to her enthusiasm and joy music brings to her.  Not only did we find the right program, but in doing so, we discovered what a beautiful gift and talent our little girl has. It’s amazing to see the progress our little girl has made in such a short amount of time.  Watching her perform in her very first recital was such a special moment.  We are thankful to Ms. Kana for everything you do and to Ms. Christine for being so amazing with our little girl!  Ms. Christine does such an excellent job and her warm and caring approach is just the perfect touch!  Thank you so very much!”

Mary, a mother of 4-year old daughter with autism

My son, E. has flourished under Kana’s guidance.  He now seems to rely on his keyboard as a place/instrument he can go to relax and have fun. We often find him banging around on the keyboard and composing his own songs. I particularly enjoy how you (Kana) made his practicing into something that he controls — by asking him how many times he should repeat a song during practice. Kana’s music and piano lessons provide a non-threatening, enjoyable environment in which to learn while at the same time give E. clear milestones, expectations and structure which he depends and thrives on to succeed.”

– Karen, Mother of E. who is diagnosed with autism

Ms. Kana, we feel very fortunate to have found you to work with him since many teachers I went to refused to deal with him because he was so antsy and would not sit still.  I cannot express enough our gratitude for all the work you have done with him and for how far he’s come since your first meeting when he was just a little 3 year old.  It speaks volumes of your talent with children and bringing out the best of their musicality to nurture their talents.”

– M, Mother of G with attention problems

I’ve noticed my son, J, has been using his fingers more appropriately at home and does not bang on the piano as often. I’ve also noticed him singing while playing.  This is something he did not do before.  He used to hum the music.  Now he’s singing the words.  I’ve already seen great progresses in J.” (The mother sent this message after J has taken 3 lessons with Kana.)

– M, mother of J with autism

“My husband and I are so happy with Kana’s music program and how much our son has grown and developed. With Kana’s guidance and expertise, he has become an accomplished pianist and, more importantly, loves playing the piano. With her understanding that there are many ways to teach music, Kana promotes his love and passion for music by encouraging and challenging him to grow. I would highly recommend her music program to any child who wants to learn in a fun and creative way. It is special and unique for your child’s progress.”

Kim, a mother of an 11-year old son with autism.

“When I first brought M (child’s name) to Ms. Kana, I did not know how far he could go; he was 3 years and 11 months old, was extremely impulsive, and could not engage himself in any activity for more than 2 minutes. He could not play one key at a time with his finger. But Ms. Kana made a miracle happen! Immediately after M started to work with her, I was impressed by her enormous effort and extraordinary skills to improve my son’s skills. She carefully observes M’s behaviors and tries to understand the reasons behind them in order to decrease inappropriate behaviors and increase proper behaviors. It was impressive that M’s attention span greatly increased within 8 sessions and he was able to maintain his focus and fully participate in a 30 minute lesson with no problems. After a few months of working with Ms. Kana, it was obvious that M started to make tremendous progress. When I watched a video excerpt she sent me of M’s playing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star on the color bells, my heart was beating fast and, at the end of the excerpt, it was jumping out of my chest. I was amazed by his progress and realized that he has great potential! He continues to develop his skills and now he is able to play more complicated songs such as Ode To Joy both on the bells and piano with both hands and fingers alternating – before training with Kana, this would have been an impossible feat for him. Another miracle to me is that M improved his cognitive skills through his work with Ms. Kana. He learned to play music games Kana introduced in the lessons. I just could not believe that he one day could put seven solfege cards in order, descending and ascending. She has also introduced him to reading rhythms in a way he can understand. Ms. Kana always designs musical games and activities that are just right for M and gradually makes it more challenging. In this way, M feels secure to explore himself in learning and grow his self-esteem and motivation in learning.  I have noticed that those learned skills have transferred to his activities outside music lessons; M is now able to follow directions better, learn and play games successfully, demonstrate willingness to try new and challenging tasks, and communicate better with me. Furthermore, Ms. Kana closely working with me has helped me understand the therapeutic and educational process. She sends me weekly lesson report and describes my son’s progress and learning process. She shares my son’s accomplishments in the lesson through video and audio clips as well. These help me understand the therapeutic purposes of music activities and how I can help him at home. Moreover, Ms. Kana’s confidence in M’s potential has encouraged me to believe in him and has helped me notice subtle positive changes in his behaviors. For all of these reasons, Ms. Kana is a remarkable music therapist/teacher, an indispensible asset to my family and a major contributor to the fields of music therapy, music education, and special education.”

– Lisa Mother of a boy M, who is diagnosed with autism


I just wanted to write to tell you that we are absolutely THRILLED with Ms. Christine!  My girl had an amazing time in her music session.  We are already looking forward to next week!

– Alisa, mother of a girl C, who wrote to Hug Music after her first session with Ms. Christine


Hug Music is the best music school we’ve found in the area. They focus on personal attention with their small class size, we love their philosophy in exposing children while listening and playing acoustic live music Instruments throughout the class. My son loves attending their music sessions, and we really enjoy their nurturing school environment.

– H, a mother of a 2.5-year-old boy who attends Hug Melody group class


“Dear Ms. Kana and Mr. Sasha,
We would like to extend my thanks for the support and influence you are sharing with the boys. For the past two months, every week; the boys are getting straight A+’s on their reports and 100%’s on their tests. Teachers in both schools, keep asking me what exactly I’m doing at home to keep the boys engaged. … we recognize that MUSIC is also a big part of this influence on them. Thank you, for your support and being an inspiration for the boys. Thank you, for seeing on them talent, uniqueness and strengths. Thank you, for letting them to explore and have fun with Music. Thank you for helping them to focus, to be engaged and most important to express themselves.

With Gratitude,
– C family”

From professionals:

“Kana’s innovative approach is highly significant in the field of music therapy, music education, and special education and the outcomes of her clients with autism have far exceeded the outcomes typically attained by clients on the spectrum.”

– Darcy Walworth, PhD, MT-BC Chair of Certification Board of Music Therapists / Co-chair of the Autism Task Force for the American Music Therapy Association