Teacher of the Week: Travis Hobbie

Teacher: Travis Hobbie

Instruments:  Guitar, Bass, Ukulele, Piano, Songwriting

Locations:  Bethlehem and Coopersburg

Each week we put the spotlight on one of our amazing teachers, including a few words from some of their talented students. This week, we introduce guitar, bass, ukulele, piano, and songwriting teacher Travis Hobbie.travis

Travis has been playing guitar and writing songs for over 10 years. While working on his English degree at Temple University, Travis also took courses in music. He played for 8 years in a band called Wailing Waters and spent several years in the band Our Griffins. Most recently, he has been pursuing solo work, writing and performing as William H. Travis.

Listen to Travis’ music here:

Bachelor’s Degree in English (Temple)

Writing Certificate (Temple)

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From the Director: Lessons with Travis begin with his quintessential greeting, “Welcome!” From that point forward there can be no doubt that you truly invited into Travis’s world. With a knack of putting students at ease, while simultaneously encouraging them to express themselves, Travis finds a way to reach every individual director– from the most willing to learn to the greatest challenges. As an administrator, I know that we can always rely on him in a pinch and that he will always do what he can for the betterment of the students and the school. His love of music is infectious and his love of learning even more so. I always look forward to seeing what the students of Travis Hobbie will bring to the table next.


What is your favorite part of taking lessons with Travis?

“Not only has Travis taught me how to play guitar and to learn the patterns inside and out, but he has become a great friend that I look forward to seeing every single week.

“What is something Travis has taught you that you will always remember?

“Travis has taught me to play with complete confidence and to ‘own it'”

“My first full song”

If your friend was thinking of taking lessons with Travis, what would you say?

“That Travis is the best supportive teacher!! We are extremely happy with him!!!”

“It will be a highlight of your week

Check out this article by wxpn about Travis and his music!!

Meet William H. Travis, the best singer-songwriter you’ve never heard of

Teacher of the Week: Rachel Roy

Teacher: Rachel Roy
Instrument: Voice, Beginner Piano
Locations: Bethlehem, Northampton

Each week we put the spotlight on one of our amazing teachers, including a few words from some of their talented students. This week, we introduce voice teacher Rachel Roy. Rachel teaches in the Bethlehem and Northampton studios and has been with TLC for the past six years.


Rachel attended Syracuse University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in vocal performance and received a Master’s from Southwestern Seminary in Fort Worth, TX. Rachel has also served as Administrative Director for the Gregg Smith Singers’ Adirondack Festival of American Music in Lake Placid, NY and performed with the all-female a cappella ensemble, The Mandarins, for whom she was the director and vocal percussionist, as well as a Varsity Vocals award-winning soloist and arranger. Rachel played the role of Marcellina in Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, and the lead roles in Anything Goes, Me and My Girl, Annie Warbucks and Oliver. Rachel has also performed with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, traveled internationally with the Southwestern Jazz Combo. For the past few


“My favorite thing about lessons with Rachel is the fun and enjoyable learning environment. Even after having a bad day, going to lessons always makes me smile.” 

“She’s funny and she makes me comfortable to sing infront of more people.”


“Rachel has taught me the importance of having confidence in my abilities as a vocalist” 

“She taught me not to be afraid in public and I realized that I can sing so much higher then I did before I started lessons”


“Go for it. You’ll definitely learn a lot and you’ll have a really great time.”

“I would tell them to do it, because taking lessons with Rachel will be a great experience to better themselves as a musician and a person.”

directorFrom the Director: An invaluable member of The Lesson Center team for the past six years, Rachel Roy is the kind of teacher who consistently goes above and beyond for her students. She is much more than simply a teacher — she is a mentor, a cheerleader, a taskmaster (when necessary) and a counselor, who takes the whole student into consideration as she guides them in their musical endeavors. Smiles are contagious in Rachel’s lesson room – and no matter how daunting or frustrating the lesson – her students can’t help but leave feeling uplifted after their time together. We’re very proud to have her as part of the TLC family and look forward to watching her students grow under her guidance.



Its that time of year… you’re making plans for summer vacations, summer camps and adjusting to the idea that the kids will be home for the next three months.  Oftentimes parents think that this is a good time to put a hold on your student’s weekly music instruction.

This can often be a big mistake.

When students opt to hold their lessons over the summer they risk…

  • Losing their preferred teacher, day and time:  Though we do our best, we cannot guarantee your teacher or time will be available when you return in the fall.
  • Backsliding in the learning process: Students typically have to go back several weeks or even months in their lesson plans when they return, wasting valuable time and tuition dollars

Here at The Lesson Center we have come up with several ways to make sure you have plenty of time for all your vacation plans AND stay on track with your music education.  

  • Two weeks of Vacation Credit for every student (take two weeks off between June 1st – August 30th and pay no tuition for the missed time.)
  • The Lesson Center is CLOSED between July 2 – July 9 for Summer Break.
  • Any additional time off can be made up with virtual lessons from your teacher via the LessonMate program.

There are only about 8-10 weeks of actual summer break once school gets out and before it restarts.  Three of them you will not have to pay for (summer vacation credits and 4th of July week) if you retain your lesson schedule.  

Think carefully… will your student be able to make it to 6 or 8 lessons over the summer? If the answer is yes, then it makes sense to KEEP your schedule in tact. Keeping your student on track, occupied over the slower summer days with a productive endeavor, and your investment secure.

So before you HOLD your lessons, consider visiting our website to submit your SUMMER VACATION WEEKS and we will mark those for tuition credit.  Any additional time off (LessonMate lessons) can be requested via the REPORT AN ABSENCE link on our site at any time.

If you have any questions, email or call one of our Lesson Coordinators any time (610-868-1617).

We’re happy to help!



Sniffles and Scales, Coughs and Chords

It’s that time of year – sniffles and sneezes, coughs and colds, flu and fever. Not fun for your children, not fun for you, and also not fun for your music teacher.

When students come to lessons when they are sick they pass this illness on to our teachers, who then find themselves needing to cancel lessons for ALL of their students.

In addition, our teachers are professional musicians who rely on their good health for their livelihood. With that in mind, we ask that you be aware of the following health protocol:

Do not send your child to lessons or attend lessons yourself if you/they –

  • were too ill to attend school/work on the same day as their lesson
  • have ANY contagious ailment
  • have a fever
  • are too weary from illness to give proper attention to the instruction

We reserve the right to refuse or stop any lesson in which it appears that the student is too ill to participate.


We know lessons are a considerable investment — with that in mind we have partnered with LessonMate to allow our teachers to provide meaningful, digital lessons to your student when they are unable to be with us in person.

Anytime your student is absent – due to illness or otherwise – your teacher can create a digital lesson for them to follow at home when it’s more convenient. Just follow the link at the top of our website “Report an Absence“, click the box to request a LessonMate lesson and you’re all set!

Thank you for your consideration.

Stay well!

Lori Roberts
Managing Director
The Lesson Center

Fall 2014 – TLC Newsletter


New APP Now Available for All Students/Families

We’ve developed a great way for you to keep up with everything that’s happening at The Lesson Center at the touch of a button.  Download our new app for your Android of Apple device and you’ll have immediate access to:

– weather/holiday closure information

– upcoming event schedule

– course descriptions

– instantly report an absence

–  much, much more!

Click on the link below to download the app for your favorite device, absolutely free.




New Bethlehem Location Now Open


The new location of The Lesson Center in Bethlehem is now open for lessons, walk-ins and all visitors.  The center will be open during regular lesson hours:

Monday-Thursday 2:00pm to 8:00pm
Friday 2:00pm-6:00pm
Saturday 10:00am to 2:00pm

Office hours: Monday – Thursday only

The new address is: 1509 Easton Avenue, Bethlehem, PA 18017

Please stop in and take a look at our new digs!


What’s Happening in Bethlehem?

Just a few announcements about our new Bethlehem studio and all the amazing things on tap for the new year!

The best laid plans always go awry… and this is no exception. Many of you may not know that when it comes to building a new TLC, we don’t hire architects and contractors. Not when the boss is so handy!

Just like with the construction of all of our studios, it all starts and ends with my industrious and hard-working husband, TLC Owner, Jeff Roberts. Jeff’s been burning the midnight oil on the new Bethlehem space, but Rome wasn’t built in a day and TLC won’t be open by November – so, we have decided to delay the opening to coincide with our planned Student Appreciation Open House and Recital, scheduled for Saturday, December 14th.

This way, you’ll all get a chance to peek at the new space, have one last lesson at East Broad Street, take a few weeks off to enjoy the winter holidays and then come back in the New Year to our BRAND NEW LESSON rooms.




As we started painting and planning the wall space of the new studio – it occurred to us that it would be AMAZING to have photos of our students (past and present) hanging on our walls.  So, we’re inviting you to bring in your favorite photo of yourself or your hardworking student musician to be hung in our new performance cafe.   Whether its a highlight from a recital, on-stage at Musikfest, or at home practicing – we’d love to have your favorite moment captured on our walls.  Photos must be no smaller than 4×6 and no larger than 11×14.   We ask that you provide a simple black frame that can be easily hung – similar to these.  These photographs will become the property of The Lesson Center, but will only be used on our walls, so we can remember all the talented folks we’ve had the pleasure of working with over the years.

Photos will be accepted at the Bethlehem studio during lesson hours.


OPEN HOUSE: Saturday, December 14th

As mentioned previously, we will be conducting a Student Appreciation Open House and Recital on Saturday, December 14th.  EVERYONE is welcome: students, families, former students and families, new friends and old.   You will be receiving an invitation shortly, but we hope you’ll mark your calendars to join us.   Open House hours will run from 1pm to 6pm and the event will include refreshments, performances, crafts for the kids, a tour of our studio and more!


MUSIC FUNTIME CHRISTMAS PARTY: Sunday, December 15th (10:30am-12:30pm)

Students in our Music FunTime program, as well as their friends, siblings and others (ages 1-5) are invited to our Music FunTime Christmas Party on Sunday, December 15th at our new Bethlehem studio.   The day will include a visit from Santa Claus, complete with rockin’ pictures, a mini Music FunTime class, a performance by our students and holiday goodies.   Details will be available on the Events page of our website.



NEW PROGRAMMING: Recording & Mixing, Enhanced Band Coaching

Beginning in the new year, The Lesson Center will be offering Recording and Mixing courses to our teen students (13+) and adults.   Recording and Mixing will be offered as 12-week semester courses ($420) in the fall and winter and 8-week semester courses ($280) in Spring and Summer.   Classes will be limited to six students total and we be taught at Sixwill Studios (81 W Broad), just down the street from our current Bethlehem location.   A full course description will be coming shortly!  (check our website under GROUP LESSONS for updates)

In addition to the recording classes, our Band Coaching program will now be enhanced to include two hours of recording studio time at the end of each semester.  The coaching students will complete seven rehearsal sessions, conduct a live performance, and then go into the studio with their bandmates, coach, and an audio engineer, to record their songs.   Students will receive a copy of their recorded songs at the end of the session.  And, at the end of the year, we will produce a compilation CD that will include tracks from all of our TLC Band Coaching groups.  Enrollment for both programs will be open beginning November 18, 2013.



We have a host of holiday recitals this year.  For a full list, please visit our Students on Stage page.   If you have questions about recital, please speak with your instructor and/or lesson coordinator.  They will be happy to help.

TLC Students To Play Warped Tour

BIG congratulations going out to TLC students: Kris Rank, Ryland Holland, Max Portnoy and Thomas Cuce, whose band “Next to None” just won the Ernie Ball “Battle of the Bands” and along with that honor, the opportunity to perform at the Van’s Warped Tour (Toyota Pavilion, Scranton) on Tuesday, July 16th.

The Warped Tour is a touring music and extreme sports festival. The tour is held in venues such as parking lots or fields upon which the stages and other structures are erected. The skateboard shoe manufacturer Vans, among others, has sponsored the tour every year since 1995, and it is often referred to as the Vans Warped Tour. The tour started out as a showcase for punk rock music, but its more recent line-ups have featured a diversity of genres. (Wikipedia)

This is an extraordinary feat for “Next to None” – as the band’s members range in age from 14-15. “Next to None” takes part in our regular band coaching program, under the direction of TLC teacher, Geoff Black. Watch their official music video below.


The Lesson Center to Relocate Bethlehem Flagship Location for 10 Year Anniversary

The Lesson Center New Building Bethlehem

Artist rendering of The Lesson Center’s new Easton Avenue location in Bethlehem, scheduled to open in Late Fall 2013. – by Jason Berger

Construction has begun on a new location for Lehigh Valley-based music school, The Lesson Center.  The new location, which will be housed at 1509 Easton Avenue, Bethlehem, PA, will include private lessons rooms, classroom space for teen and adult bands, group piano, group guitar and pre-k classes, as well as a performance stage for intimate recitals, and will serve a a relocation of their current studio located at 6 E. Broad Street.

The Lesson Center has four Lehigh Valley locations in total, also including: Trexlertown, Coopersburg, Northampton. The Bethlehem studio was opened as the business’s first location in 2004.  At the time, the studio was comprised of three lessons rooms on the first floor the building at 6 E Broad Street, next to Billy’s Downtown Diner. The studio was then expanded in 2008 to include the second floor space above the diner.

“We have a strong affinity for our home on Broad Street,” says managing director, Lori Donovan Roberts.  “But, this move will allow us to expand our services to our customers, making their experience both educational and enjoyable, and will ensure the most stress free experience.”

The new location will include ample, free, public parking, as well as a convenient student drop off point for families on the run.  “We listened to our customers concerns, and overwhelmingly, the thing that would make life easier for our parents and students, is convenience,” say Donovan Roberts. “By eliminating the need to feed parking meters, and relocating to such an easily accessible neighborhood, we feel we can better serve our current clientele and be a convenient option for new students as well.”

The addition of a performance space within the studio will help further the studio’s mission of providing goal-centered learning.  “We believe students grow the most when they have specific goals and benchmarks to achieve,” says owner Jeff Roberts. “Our emphasis has always been on providing performance opportunities to keep that motivation in the forefront of our student’s learning experience.  By adding our own stage to our Bethlehem studio, we can further enhance that experience.”

The Lesson Center joins a number of other well-known, small business in the Easton Avenue neighborhood – including Vegan Treats, The Compact Disc Center, and The Bethlehem Dairy (The Cup). The owners anticipate construction to be complete in late fall.  There will be no disruption in students schedules.

The Lesson Center provides private and group music education for students of all ages on all contemporary, school band, and orchestral instruments, as well as voice, choral and pre-k/early music education classes.  For more information, visit their website at: or call 610-868-1617.