Comprehensive music tuition by highly skilled, experienced and innovative staff

Be trained by musicians of a high calibre who have excellent music knowledge and an extensive skill set

Offering you all the vital components of music education, including instrumental lessons and music theory. We offer piano accompaniment services, aural training, and are specialist FET teachers.

Ideal for:

The Music HQ Expertise

The Music HQ difference

Meet the directors

Elizabeth Retief and Nicky Jansen are two music education professionals who graduated together from the University of Stellenbosch. They have been working in the music industry, with a focus on music education and performance, ever since.

With 38 years of combined experience as music educators, performers, and administrators, they have decided to open their own music school in the Southern Suburbs of Cape Town, as they have recognized the need for music education outside of the traditional school system.


They are dynamic, self-motivated individuals with strong communication and proven leadership skills, and a passion for music education and music performance. Their years of experience have equipped them with the ability to nurture students while bringing out the best in them.

The motivation and development of students and seeing them succeed in their life pursuits, are the strongest driving factors in everything that they do. They believe in the power of music education.

Nicky Jansen

Nicky graduated with a BMus degree from the University of Stellenbosch and has a Postgraduate Certificate in Education from UNISA. She has performed both nationally and internationally (New York, London, Finland, Germany, Australia, Israel). Nicky was the College Music Department Head of Reddam House in Constantia, and has extensive experience in teaching and assessing the IEB syllabus. She co-authored and co-published the music theory book, Iki and Arki and the Amazing World of Music.

Fun Fact: Nicky loves good coffee, cold water swimming, travelling and art.

Elizabeth Retief

Elizabeth graduated with a BMusHons degree in Piano Performance from the University of Stellenbosch. She started her career as a repetiteur for a community opera and theatre company. She regularly performs as a freelance accompanist and chamber musician. Elizabeth was the Head of Music at Epworth Independent School for Girls (2010 - 2013) and Elkanah House (2013 - 2021). She has extensive experience in teaching and assessing the IEB syllabus.

Fun Fact: Elizabeth loves cooking, geocaching and weekends away with her husband and dog.

What happy students are saying

A great teacher, such as Nicky, tells you where to look, but not what to see. Her compassion, patience and generous and nurturing nature foster a learning environment which is unlike any I have ever experienced. She was an invaluable mentor to me during my formative years and continues to be one to this day. What I learnt in her classroom goes far beyond the ordinary, thanks to her endless passion - not only for music, but also for the personal growth of her students.

Maria Lichtenberg

After 12 years of being taught by Nicky, she has instilled in me the greatest love and appreciation for the music I play, listen to, and write. This is something which I have come to value high above any other technical proficiency or achievement. The obvious personal care she took in the moulding of my and other students’ musical journeys shows her astounding passion for teaching music and deep commitment to her craft. I continue to play music with her to this day and simply refuse to believe that there is anyone better suited to teaching its incredible workings than her.

Fynn Young

I had the pleasure of being Elizabeth’s piano student. She is not only a brilliant pianist, but also a fantastic music theory teacher. She has an efficient and passionate approach to teaching. She has the ability to explain difficult concepts in a logical, clear and patient manner. Her somewhat no-nonsense approach is balanced with a lot of love and discernment for where her students are at. Elizabeth is a personal mentor and inspired me to further my studies in piano performance. Anyone would be lucky to study music under this brilliant woman's tutelage.


It has been a privilege to have lessons with Elizabeth. She has fostered a great love and respect for music in me. She shows empathy for her students and her patient and caring approach has helped me grow in confidence, not only as a musician, but also as a human being. Elizabeth has an incredible sense of humour which always contributed to fun and interactive lessons


Elizabeth is a great pianist and the best sight-reader I know! She led the Elkanah House Music Department with vigour, patience and with passion for the Arts. She is the coolest music teacher; students love her and her knowledge of the IEB music curriculum is phenomenal. Thank you for being my mentor and coaching me to be the best person I could be in my role as Head of Music.

Gilmour Gordon

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need an instrument at home?

Yes. If you do not have your own instrument at your first lesson, your teacher will be able to advise you on what to purchase. An acoustic piano is preferred for piano students; however, a keyboard with touch sensitivity is a good alternative to an acoustic piano. We can also recommend the best places for instrument acquisition.

Can a student enrol for more than one course?

Yes, absolutely. You can enrol for a variety of programs. We advise that you take music theory in conjunction with your instrumental lessons.

My child is home schooled. Do you offer lessons in the morning?

Yes. We can negotiate times that will best suit all parties involved. 

Can adults enrol at The Music HQ?

Yes, we have many adult students.

Can I have my lessons online?

We are equipped to teach online; however, it is advised that your instrumental lessons take place on site, and in person. Theory and production lessons can easily be done online.

Will I learn to read sheet music?

Yes. To become a well-rounded musician, one must learn the skill of reading music. It would be beneficial to also enrol for theory lessons.

My child is showing an interest in music. How do I know whether they are ready to commence lessons?

We have implemented a policy restricting instruction to children under the age of 8 to ensure optimal learning experiences and developmental readiness. Exceptions to this policy may be considered on a case-by-case basis. Assessments can be arranged.

My child does not want to take examinations, and just wants to do music for their own enjoyment and development. Can they still attend The Music HQ?

Yes. We are experienced in adapting to the needs of our students.

My child’s school does not offer music as a subject. Are you able to offer it as an 8th subject?

We have extensive experience in preparing FET students, and will be happy to liaise with your child’s school. Alternatively, we can prepare them for Music as an external option. 

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