Dr. Birman was a fantastic teacher of music. For 8 years I had the distinct pleasure of studying classical piano with her at Merit School of Music. In addition to teaching me the intricacies of Chopin, Rachamninoff and Haydn (among others), she helped me mature greatly as a musician overall, teaching me how to practice, think and listen like a musician should. I am forever indebted to her for the work ethic she instilled in me, as well as the love for piano she so beautifully modeled. Her very presence was an education. It is in part due to her pedagogy that I now seek to play piano professionally and teach students myself.
During our time together I performed in many recitals for her and competitions. Under her direction I won the Junior Concerto Competition at the Merit School of Music, performed in the top piano ensembles in Merit's tuition-free conservatory, performed with Kevin Hong on 98.7 WFMT on the same show as the famous pianist Lang Lang, and was coached in a master class by Emmanuel Ax.