Meet Our Teachers
M.M. Guildhall School of Music & Drama
Born in Tbilisi, Georgia, Ana Gogava is a highly successful pianist and passionate educator located in London, England.
Her most notable honors include the 1st Prize at the N.Gabunia national competition in Georgia, 1st Prize in the VIIth and IXth V. Krainev International Competitions in Ukraine and 1st Prize in the VIIth international N. Rubinstein Competition in Paris in 2007.
In 2019, Ana won 1st Prize at the Birmingham International Piano competition.
Ana has participated in master-classes given by artists such as Imogen Cooper, Vladimir Krainev and Michel Sogny, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Richard Goode and has received scholarships from the President of Georgia, Elizabeth Leonskaya and the Sogny Foundation. In 2015 and 2016 Ana Gogava was awarded by Help Musicians Trust, Martin Musical Trust and English Speaking Union (ESU) to take a part at Piano Master Classes at Banff Centre in Canada.
Ana successfully completed her Bachelor’s, Master’s and Artist Diploma courses at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London where she studied with Professor Philip Jenkins.
M.M. Manhattan School Of Music
New York City, New York
Japanese Pianist Emi Kaneda is a member of Mu Phi Episolon Foundation since 2015.
Emi had performed at Tenry Culture Institutes in New York city, International House New York city, Longy School of Music in Boston, Maiami Senior high School in South Beach, Halle in Germany. She had also participated in Euro Music Festival in Germany in 2017 and Maiami Music Festival in 2019.
Emi holds both Bachelor’s and Master’s degree at Manhattan School of Music, New York, under the guidance of Marc Silverman.
Her teaching style focuses on the basic foundations of keyboard playing and developing the student’s musicality. Emi helps students to improve their sight-reading skills, ability to read music, hearing, and memorize a variety of music.
D.M.A. Indiana University (Exp.2024)
M.M. Rice University
Winner of the 2014 Miami Music Festival Piano Competition and the 2015 Jacob Flier International Piano Competition, Japanese pianist Ryo Kaneko is a rising star in the next generation of pianists. He has performed with conductors such as Vladimir Feltsman, Michael Rossi, Victoria Gau, and Bohuslav Rattay and has presented recitals on many prestigious venues including the Kennedy Center, New World Theater, Rosa Hart Theater, McKenna Theater, Manhattan’s Steinway Hall, and the Studley Theatre.
His performance has been consistently praised for his unrivaled, visceral energy.
Times Herald-Record’s Mr. James F. Cotter vividly describes Mr. Kaneko’s performance of Sergei Rachmaninoff’s first piano concerto: “The final allegro takes the form of a scherzo, which Kaneko brought to a rousing climax that brought the audience to its feet with shouts of ‘Bravo.’”
Mr. Kaneko received his undergraduate and Master’s degree at Rice University, where he studied with the internationally acclaimed artist Dr. Robert Roux. Currently, he is earning his Doctor of Music in Indiana University under the guidance of Professor Emile Naoumoff.
D.M.A University of Cincinnati (exp 2022)
M.M. University of Cincinnati
Pianist Sooyeon Baik is expanding her career in the United States and South Korea as a soloist, chamber musician, and piano instructor. She has performed in many concerts with the recent ones having taken place in Cincinnati, OH, San Marcos, TX, Candás, Spain, and Gijón, Spain. As a co-founder and music director of the Espoir Ensemble in Korea, a piano ensemble group composed of a group of alumni of the Goyang High School of Arts, she organizes originally-themed concerts and performs in them. She is also a teaching assistant and accompanist in Gangseo Music Academy for the Gifted, where she has been given solo and chamber recitals and lectures since 2011.
Ms. Baik holds a bachelor’s (magna cum laude) and master’s degrees in piano performance at the College-Conservatory of Music, University of Cincinnati, with a full scholarship as well as CCM Honors Scholarship, Drake Scholarship, Meretta Scholarship, and Baur Scholarship. She is now pursuing her degree of Doctoral of Musical Arts in piano performance, working with many world-renowned pianists.
Ms. Baik gives piano lessons to various age groups and levels from the beginner to the professionals.
D.M.A Stony Brook University
M.M. Stony Brook University
Stony Brook, New York
Amalia Rinehart is a pianist and piano teacher with multiple years of experience teaching students of all ages and levels. Ms. Rinehart is currently pursuing her doctorate degree in piano performance at Stony Brook University. She earned her Master of Music degree from Stony Brook, and her Bachelor’s in music (theory and history) from Columbia University, from which she graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa.
Amalia has performed all over the US and Canada, at festivals such as the Beethoven Institute at Mannes School of Music (NY), Icicle Creek Chamber Music Festival (WA), Colorado College Summer Music Festival, Bowdoin International Music Festival (ME) as a Kaplan Fellow, Sarasota Music Festival (FL), Domaine Forget in Quebec, and as a fellow at the Kneisel Hall Festival in Maine.
Dr. Alison Chiang
D.M.A. Eastman School of Music
M.M. Eastman School of Music
Rochester, New York
Alison Chiang received her Doctorate Degree in Piano Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music, where she also received her Bachelors and Masters degrees. She owes her musical development to Natalya Antonova and Nelita True, as well as Pamela Mia Paul and Olga Radosavljevich.
She has been an Eastman Community Music School piano instructor since 2016, and her other teaching experiences include college-level secondary piano and class piano during her studies at Eastman.
Her most recent honors include top prizes in the Eastman Piano Competition, the Lewisville International Piano Competition, the Wideman International Piano Competition, and the Kosciuszko Foundation Chopin Piano Competition, as well as a Carnegie Hall debut in October of 2019.
Classical and Jazz Piano
M.M. University of Southern Mississippi
An “artist of the sound,” Julián is more than just a pianist. His skillful versatility includes a wide-range of styles, from the classical tradition to Jazz idioms, and Colombian & African musical idiosyncrasy. His experimentation with different musical ideas inspired by the Great Masters of music history, have led him to the joy of musical expression through composition. This addition to his musical skills lets him fully explore musical thoughts with all options at hand, making each performance a truly personal expression through music.
Born in 1993 in Bogotá, Colombia, Julián began his music and keyboard studies at the tender age of four, with one of Colombia’s most important composers and pedagogues, Jaime Torres Donneys, and his wife, Esperanza Valbuena.
In 2008, he continued piano studies with his brother, Renato Pernett Castilla, who is an accomplished composer, arranger, and pianist himself. Simultaneously, Julián began to immerse himself into the world of Latin-American music and Jazz. This rich background of influences inspired him to become a professional musician. To achieve this, he began formal studies with Pilar Leyva, the former pupil of legendary pianist, Claudio Arrau.
Julián arrived to the US in 2015 to earn his Master’s degree at The University of Southern Mississippi, in Hattiesburg, after which he has been working as a Jazz Piano, Big Band conductor, and collaborative pianist in both USM and the Winters School of Music at William Carey University.
An important part of his musical awareness and on-going pursuit of his craft has been participating in numerous masterclasses at national and international piano festivals, in addition to interacting with many renowned musicians of diverse genres and disciplines such as Blanca Uribe, Bill Summers, Chick Corea, Don Preston, Edoardo Torbianelli, and Lang Lang.
M.M. Yale University
New Haven, Connecticut
Mezzo-soprano Ashley Mulcahy is a recent graduate of the Voxtet Program (MM ‘19) at the Yale School of Music and Institute of Sacred Music. At Yale, Ashley had the opportunity to work with many internationally renowned conductors, including Nicholas McGegan, Masaaki Suzuki, David Hill, and Simon Carrington.
Ashley has performed with numerous ensembles including Bach Collegium Japan, Theatre of Voices, New York State Baroque, Pegasus Early Music, The Newberry Consort, the Boston Early Music Festival, and Music of the Baroque. Ashley also co-directs Lyracle, a voice and viol ensemble. In 2020, Lyracle was one of four ensembles selected to participate in the Early Music America Emerging Artist Showcase. Ashley resides in the Boston area, where she is a regular soloist at Marsh Chapel, under the direction of Scott Allen Jarrett.
Ashley holds a BA in Italian and a BM in vocal performance from The University of Michigan.
M.M University of Washington,
Maggie Boeckman Graziano possesses a mellifluous mezzo-soprano sound, combining depth,warmth, and clarity. Originally from St. Louis, Margaret has performed with Red River Lyric Opera, Vespertine Opera, OperaWorks, Portland Summer ky Program, Amalfi Coast Summer Opera, and Springfield Regional Opera, among others. She has been seen in roles including Fidalma in Il Matrimonio Segreto, Mélantho in Fauré’s Pénélope, Third Lady and Third Spirit (Die Zauberflöte), and in the chorus for productions of Semele, Carmen, and Trial by Jury. As part of the 2015 OperaWorks Advanced Artist Program, Margaret created the role of one of the religious fanatics for the original production Singed, the program’s culminating performance. As a member of the 2011-12 Springfield Regional Opera Young Artist Program, she also performed in scenes programs as Charlotte (Werther), Dorabella (Così fan tutte), and Sesto (Giulio Cesare). Most recently she could be heard in Steamboat Springs Summer Opera Festival’s Production of The Enchanted Pig in the role of Mrs. North Wind.
In concert, Maggie performed with the University of Washington Symphony
Orchestra in the Mermaid Duet from Oberon, as the incidental music soloist in A
Midsummer Night’s Dream, and as the soloist for the Duruflé Requiem. She was also the soloist for the Mosaic Springfield Music Ensemble’s production of the Fauré Requiem. In 2015, Maggie competed in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions for the Northwest Region, winning the Helen Price Encouragement Award.
Maggie received a Bachelor of Arts in Music degree from Drury University and a Masters degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Washington.
M.M. Carnegie Mellon University
Alex Taylor is a professional singer, actor, and teacher. He is a member of the Grammy®-award winning Houston Chamber Choir, and has performed in dozens of plays, operas, and musicals. Most recently, Alex toured Vote for the Goat and Santa’s Rockin’ Reindeer with Express Children’s Theatre in Houston, TX.
Alex’s favorite stage credits include Young Frankenstein (The Monster), Singin in the Rain (R.F. Simpson), Catch Me If You Can (Roger Strong), Neil Simon’s Rumors (Ken Gorman), One Man, Two Guvnors (Stanley Stubbers), The Magic Flute (Sarastro), and The Marriage of Figaro (Bartolo). In addition to theatrical roles, he also has over a decade of choral experience including concert, symphonic, and madrigal choirs as well as vocal jazz. Alex is the librettist of the short opera PETROV, which, in 2019, had its international premiere in Belgrade, Serbia. In addition to being a performer and creator, Alex worked as the Music Director for Santa’s Rockin’ Reindeer at Express Children’s Theatre.
A native of Beloit, Wisconsin, Alex has his Bachelor of Arts in Music Theatre and Bachelor of Arts in Music Theory from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and Masters of Music in Vocal Performance from Carnegie Mellon University.
M.M. Mannes School Of Music,
New York City, New York
Soprano Chang Liu is an active performer of both opera and concert repertoire. Her singing is full of passion for performance and her audiences.Chang just graduated from Mannes School of Music at the New School this year with Master degree. She has performed and worked with: Arthur Levy, Joshua Greene, Lucy Arner, Ted Taylor and Glenn Morton.
On December 2018 and April 2019 she took part in the Ted Teylor Opera workshop concert. She also took part in the CLA summer training program and performed in Italy. She was invited to performance at the Classical Lyric Arts benefit gala last December. Chang have casted ‘Muzetta’ in Spring 2020 Mannes Opera production on Feb.2020.
Chang helps students using breath to support voice and find the resonance. She also encourages students to sing in ‘legeto’ and help them improve both vocal range and quality. Chang believes a singer should always sing in a scientific and healthy way.
M.M. Ithaca College,
Ithaca, New York
Hannah Martin resides in Ithaca, NY as a private voice teacher, consultant, and vocal jazz clinician. Since completing her M.M. in Vocal Performance with a jazz focus from Ithaca College School of Music in 2019, she has studied with and performed alongside numerous professional musicians, including the world renowned New York Voices. An active JEN Member (Jazz Education Network), she has attended the last three national conferences and is well versed in the art of improvisation, arranging, and composition. Her versatile vocal work transcends genre, including but not limited to: rock, pop, funk, jazz, and musical theater styles. Hannah is passionate about educating students and music educators alike on the importance of integrating contemporary styles within music curriculum–allowing each individual to discover and build their own unique instrument.
Among other various duo and trio gigs, you can find Hannah currently performing in the New York area with rock and roll band Backtalk, funk/soul band NEO Project, and playing drums and vocals in her own jazz/folk duo MaMa.
B.A. Gordon College,
Julia Ragusa is a Boston based coloratura soprano, actor, and dancer with her Bachelor of Arts in Music and Theatre Arts from Gordon College. Additionally, she studied at Fordham University’s Summer Musical Theatre Intensive in Lincoln Center, NYC. Professionally and in college, she has performed a variety of leading roles including The Baker in Witch Cakes: The Musical (Providence Fringe Festival), and Rosa Bud in The Mystery of Edwin Drood.
Most recently, she worked as a vocal company member for the College Light Opera Company’s virtual 52nd season. Julia has been teaching private lessons for just over two years, and her mission is to provide a safe, challenging, and fun environment for students to explore and grow! She teaches a technique that utilizes body mapping, and vocal acoustics to set students up for success in resonance and expression. Her specialties include classical and musical theatre genres.
Guitar, Bass, Ukulele
M.M. University of Southern California
Jeff Frantom is a guitarist, bassist, composer, and teacher based in Los Angeles. Over the years Jeff has become a go-to guitarist and bassist in the LA music scene, performing with numerous acts including Communicant, Sofia Wolfson, Talker and countless others. He has also honed his skills as cross-genre multi-instrumentalist while performing in the pit for a variety of musical theater productions.
In 2019 Jeff released his debut EP, Happy Accident, a 4-song collection of instrumental songs that explore his influences in jazz, Americana, and indie music.
After moving to Los Angeles from his hometown of Henderson, Nevada, Jeff earned a Bachelor’s of Music in Studio/Jazz Guitar from USC in 2018 and a Master’s of Music in Studio/Jazz Guitar in 2020 on full scholarship. While at USC, he taught 4 semesters of guitar classes as a Teaching Assistant. He continues to teach both privately in his home studio and at music stores around LA.
M.M. Northwestern University
B.M. Manhattan School of Music
New York City, New York
Waichi Champion is a percussion performer and music educator based in Dallas, Texas. Waichi has performed with professional ensembles across the world including the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, Hudson Valley Philharmonic, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, Hong Kong Sinfonietta, Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra, Spectrum Ensemble and
International Chamber Artists. In 2020, she performed as a guest artist at the Manhattan School of Music Virtual Percussion Summit.
Specializing in solo percussion, Waichi has won or placed at multiple solo marimba competitions including the Southern California Marimba Competition, the PASIC International Solo Competition and the Great Plains Marimba Competition.
Waichi holds a BM from the Manhattan School of Music and an MM from Northwestern University, both in Percussion Performance. She has studied with She-e Wu, Duncan Patton, Christopher Lamb, Erik Charlston, Vadim Karpinos, Shaun Tilburg and Chin-Tung Chau. She is also an alumnus of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and the Music Academy of the West.
Wilder began playing drums at the age of 5 and started to pursue a professional career at the age of 12 when he entered to the National Conservatory of Music, taking the first place in the specialty of Percussion.
He has been in two of the most legendary rock bands of Peru, he joined ¨Libido¨ in 2011, winners of two MTV Awards: platinum and gold records.
After leaving the band towards middle of 2017, he joined ¨Rio¨ in October. Rio was the firt rock band who appeared in the peruvian music scenario. He toured over the country for about two years and in October of 2019, he took the hard decision of leaving the band, he had a final concert and emotional farewell which was in live streamed TV. The new beginning took place in United States, where he traveled to work with a Rock Project in New York and months later he moved to California, to join the punk rock band, Dose. He is currently working with them and getting ready for the upcoming shows.
During his professional career, he has shared stage with Bobby Kimball (Singer of Toto), The Law, Panda, Wizard of Oz, Vilma Palma, POD, Sum 41, The Authentic Decadents, Collective Soul, El Tri, Green Dwarfs, Hoobastank, Gondwana, among others.
Wilder Lopez is not only and artist, he is also a music educator. He had more than 30 students in Peru. He was a percussion instructor and director of the Jazz Band in the school “San Jose de Monterrico” from Peru, the jazz band won for two years in a row receiving two important national awards.
Nowadays, Wilder provides one-to-one classes designed for drummers of all levels.
M.A. Bard College
Dutchess County, New York
B.F.A California Institute of the Arts
Santa Clarita, California
Albert Romero is a Los Angeles native and after graduating from the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, Albert went on to earn a BFA in Violin Performance and an MA in the innovative program of Aesthetics and Politics from the California Institute of the Arts. In addition, Albert earned a Master of Arts in Teaching from the Longy School of Music of Bard College in 2018.
With nearly two decades of professional performance experience, Albert has recorded with major motion picture studios and has performed in many local orchestras including Orchestra Santa Monica, Santa Monica Symphony, Brentwood-Westwood Symphony, West LA Symphony, Corona Symphony, Whittier Regional Orchestra, Dream Orchestra, and Opera Santa Barbara. Albert has worked with artists such as Dionne Warwick while part of the YMF Debut Orchestra and is featured in a DVD Jazz and the New Song Book, Live at the Madrid Theater with Carmen Lundy, recorded while still a student at CalArts. Albert has also been featured in the string section for Draco Rosa’s album VIDA and has played in Marco Antonio Solis’ 2014 concert tour.
Albert first started teaching with the Community Arts Partnership while a student at CalArts and continued as a private and group violin teacher with many local schools. Albert enjoys teaching all ages, some of his students are only three years old and many have been older adults. Albert instills passion in his students’ own playing, is committed to students finding their own voice and style, but most importantly, Albert helps students to build a beautiful tone and sound. Albert believes the more students love their sound, the more they will want to play and practice consistently
Violin & Viola
M.M. Texas Christian University
B.M Texas Christian University
Fort Worth, Texas
Aubrey Fineout is a violist and violinist from Texas and holds a B.M. (Magna Cum Laude) and a M.M. in Viola Performance from Texas Christian University, as well as a B.A. in Creative Writing. As an undergraduate, Ms. Fineout was awarded the L.A. Nordan Fine Arts Endowed full tuition scholarship for music in 2013 and was inducted into the Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honors Society. As a graduate student, she served as the teaching assistant to the Chair of Strings at TCU, Dr. Misha Galaganov, coaching undergraduate ensembles and teaching private lessons.
Ms. Fineout is a founding member and violist of the classical fusion group, the Cantilena String Quartet, and is also an active performer with the Dallas String Quartet (DSQ) in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, playing a variety of styles from classical to fiddle to pop to rock, on both acoustic and electric instruments.
Ms. Fineout has performed with touring artists such as Michael Bublé and 2 Cellos and performed for high-profile clients such as Bill and Melinda Gates and the George W. Bush family. In 2019, she was featured as a guest faculty artist at the University of Arkansas for their faculty chamber series. She has also served as principal violist for the TCU Symphony and the Interharmony International Music Festival Symphony in Italy, and in 2019 performed in concert with Grammy nominee Bion Tsang, Gary Levinson, and Michael Klotz at the Josef Gingold Chamber Music Festival in Miami, FL.
An active teacher, as well as performer, Ms. Fineout has maintained a studio of violin and viola students since 2013. She enjoys teaching at all levels and has experience teaching students from the ages of 5-85, tailoring her approach in order to reach each student at his or her own level, acting as a guide on their musical journey
M.M. University of North Carolina School of the Arts
Winston-Salem, North Carolina
B.M. Vanderbilt University
Blake Kitayama is an accomplished chamber and orchestral musician. He was a founding member of de Sterke Quartet who most recently won the MTNA Southern Division Chamber Music competition. Blake is currently a member of the Winston Salem Symphony. Throughout his orchestral career he has recorded for Navano Records, and has previously held positions with the Jackson Symphony and Huntsville Symphony. As a frequent chamber collaborator, Blake has been heard on APM’s Performance Today and WDAV.
An advocate for collaboration and new music, Blake has continuously worked across genres. Providing cello and vocal harmonies, his collaboration with Anna Scholfield won first prize at the eTown Handmade Songs Competition, and he recorded cello for Vidushi Goyal’s debut EP. He also debuted about a dozen new classical works for mixed ensembles.
Blake earned a Bachelor of Music from Vanderbilt University under the instruction of Felix Wang and his Master of Music at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts with Brooks Whitehouse as a member of the Chrysalis Chamber Music Institute.
M.M. Indiana University (Exp.2022)
B.M. Texas Christian University
Fort Worth, Texas
Manuel Papale is a professional musician born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In 2016, Manuel was awarded a full-tuition scholarship to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Cello Performance at Texas Christian University under the tutelage of Dr. Jesús Castro-Balbi and Christine Lamprea, and has recently graduated Magna Cum Laude. He is now pursuing a Master’s degree in Cello Performance at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music studying under Emilio Colón.
Manuel has performed in numerous masterclasses for Bion Tsang, Gregory Beaver, Christine Lamprea, Michael Kaufman, Anne-Martindale Williams, Allan Steele, Astrid Schween, Yeesun Kim, and Gwen Krosnick. Recent festival appearances include the Round Top Festival Institute, Miami Music Festival, Josef Gingold Chamber Music Festival, and Vivac-e! Cello Festival where he was given the “New Music Award” for his performance of Krzysztof Penderecki’s Divertimento for Solo Cello.
Solo appearances include the CPE Bach Cello Concerto in A minor with the TCU Collegium Musicum in 2019 and Antonín Dvořák’s Silent Woods with the Greater North Texas Youth Orchestra in 2020. Manuel is a founding member of the Uproar and Cantilena string quartets dedicated to promoting the music of female and Latin American composers. He is now Assistant Principal of the McKinney Philharmonic Orchestra and cellist of the latin fusion group Sounds of Nilo. Manuel is passionate about teaching, composing/arranging, and improvising in a variety of styles.
D.M.A. University of Illinois
Urbana-Champaign (Exp. 2020)
M.M Youngstown State University
Boston based saxophonist WILSON POFFENBERGER is quickly establishing himself as a soloist, educator, chamber musician and improviser. Currently, Wilson is pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in saxophone performance and literature at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign where he recently received ABD status.
As an avid soloist and chamber musician, Mr. Poffenberger has garnered prizes at the international and national levels. Including 1st prize at the 2020 UISO Concerto Competition, 1st prize at the 2020 NASA Collegiate Saxophone Quartet Competition, Silver Medal at the 2019 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, 1st Prize at the 2019 Krannert Debut Artist Competition and Grand Prize at the 2017 Enkor International Woodwind and Brass Competition, among others.
In addition to Mr. Poffenberger’s performing career, he is a passionate educator maintaining a small private saxophone studio and recently finishing his tenure as the split classical and jazz teaching assistant and UIUC. He has given masterclasses and lectures at Elmhurst College, Hiram College, Youngstown State University and Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
When Wilson’s not playing saxophone, you can find him brewing pour-over coffee, tinkering with his Sony mirrorless camera or watching copious amounts of backpack reviews on YouTube.
M.M. Georgia State University
B.M University of Georgia
Joseph S. Lyons is a saxophonist and educator based in Nacogdoches, TX; he is currently pursuing a Performing Artist Certificate in Saxophone Performance at Stephen F. Austin State University. A champion of new music, Lyons is Co-Artistic Director and saxophonist of the Albireo New Music Collective, a group of composers and performers dedicated to the creation, performance, and recording of new music in a virtual setting during the COVID-19 Pandemic and beyond. Recent performance highlights include performing a concerto with the Georgia State University Symphonic Wind Ensemble, winning the GSU School of Music 2020 Dean’s Award, and several conference presentations. Additionally, Lyons is the baritone chair of the Sharp2Science Quartet.
In addition to his saxophone performance career, Lyons also has extensive drum corps experience, including four summers touring with the Bluecoats Drum & Bugle Corps (2014-2017) and two summers with Atlanta CV Drum & Bugle Corps (2011-2012). Joseph has taught saxophone, mellophone, chamber music, marching band, and indoor drumline at Milton HS in Milton, GA, and currently maintains an online saxophone studio. In addition to his formal education, Lyons has studied at the Frederick L. Hemke Saxophone Institute and American Saxophone Academy, and he has performed in masterclasses taught by Allison Adams, Claude Delangle, Timothy McAllister, Otis Murphy, Phil Pierick, Debra Richtmeyer, John Sampen, Dale Underwood, and Vladislav Vals.
Lyons holds degrees from the University of Georgia (BME) and Georgia State University (MM). His primary saxophone teachers are Connie Frigo, Jan Berry Baker, and Nathan Nabb.
M.M Northwestern University
B.M Boston University
Christopher Forbes is a concert saxophonist from North Smithfield, Rhode Island who has performed internationally with various ensembles in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, France, and the United Kingdom. Christopher was named the third prize winner of the 2020 Vandoren Emerging Artist competition and has been involved in commissions with composers such as David Amram and Joan Tower.
He has recorded with multiple ensembles and is an advocate for new music showing the wide range of expression and technique that the saxophone can accomplish. Forbes holds a bachelor’s degree from Boston University, and now is an active chamber and solo musician in the Chicago area. He has studied with saxophonists including Taimur Sullivan, Frederick Hemke, Marcus Weiss, and Ken Radnofsky.
M.M. University of Cincinnati,
Hannah Lee is an active clarinetist and teacher based in New York City.
Hannah performs regularly as a chamber musician and soloist, and is soon to begin playing bass clarinet with the New York Chamber Players Orchestra. She is especially interested in collaborating with other musicians and composers to perform new music. In Spring 2016, she traveled to Port of Spain, Trinidad with members of the Virginia Tech Clarinet Studio to perform concerts with an emphasis on electronic music in collaboration with the clarinet studio at the University of Trinidad and Tobago. Other highlights include performances at Carnegie Hall, National Academy for Performing Arts (Trinidad), and Moss Arts Center (VA.)
Hannah currently teaches clarinet, saxophone, flute, and piano lessons in New York City and online. Many of her students have been selected for various honor bands and competitions, with some going on to pursue music at the collegiate level. She has worked with students between the ages of 4-83 from beginner to advanced levels, always ensuring that each lesson is catered to meet the individualized needs of the student.
Hannah has a Master of Music degree in Clarinet Performance from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Clarinet Performance and Music Education from Virginia Tech. Her primary teachers were Ronald Aufmann and Dr. Phillip O. Paglialonga
M.M. Peabody Institute of
The Johns Hopkins University
Yu Wang, born in Qingdao, China, started learning clarinet at ten years old. In 2012, Wang went to Xi’an Conservatory of Music Orchestration department for her Bachelor’s degree. She was award National Encouragement Scholarship and Outstanding Graduates. Wang attended Michigan State University for Performance Diploma and studied with Dr. Guy Yehuda in 2016. While in Michigan, she was actively performing in retirement home and children museums. In 2018, Yu began her studies at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University pursuing a Master’s degree under the instruction of Alexander Fiterstein. She has performed with the Peabody Symphony Orchestra, Peabody Chamber Orchestra, Peabody Modern Orchestra, Peabody Opera Theater Orchestra, and Wind Ensemble. Wang also was the bass clarinetist in Symphony Number One(Baltimore) and Occasional Orchestra(Baltimore)
M.M. Michigan State University (Exp. 2021)
East Lansing, Michigan
B.M Butler University
Nolan Cardenas is an American Clarinetist born in Indianapolis, Indiana where he graduated with honors from Lawrence North High School in 2015. During his time in high-school he participated in the New World Youth Symphony Orchestra, All-State Honor Band, Interlochen Clarinet Intensive, and won 8 gold medals at the state level solo and ensemble. Cardenas attended Butler University in Indianapolis, Indiana and graduated with his Bachelors in Clarinet Performance in 2019. While at Butler, Cardenas was able to participate in a wide variety of musical endeavors; such as performing with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, studying music history in Vienna, Austria, and winning the Jordan College of the Arts Concerto Competition. For winning the competition, Cardenas performed Concerto No. 1 in F minor by Weber with the Butler Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Colonel Michael J. Colburn, former Presidents Own Marine Band conductor. Cardenas has performed as principal of the Butler Symphony Orchestra, the Butler Ballet Orchestra, Butler Opera Orchestra, and the Butler Wind Ensemble.
He currently attends Michigan State University in pursuit of his masters in Clarinet Performance with a focus in Music Business. While at MSU, Cardenas has initiated the first ever MSU Virtual Clarinet Ensemble and is gearing up to premiere their first online concert later this year. He regularly performs with the Wind Symphony and the Opera orchestra, while teaching private lessons in the local communities.
M.M Northwestern University (Exp. 2023)
B.M University of Houston,
Samantha Winkler is a recent graduate of the University of Houston with her Bachelors in Clarinet Performance, and plans to continue her studies at Northwestern University in the Fall of 2021 to pursue a Masters Degree in Clarinet Performance.
Ms. Winkler is an avid performer, appearing most recently with the St. Anne Salon Series in Houston. She was a prize winner at the 2018 Buffet Crampon Student Showcase and a semi-finalist in the 2019 Jan and Beattie Wood Concerto Competition. Her playing earned her elite spots in Masters programs across the country, including Carnegie Mellon University, Eastman School of Music, The Glenn Gould School, Indiana University, and Northwestern University.
As well as solo work, Ms. Winkler enjoys playing in a variety of ensembles. She served as principal clarinet in the Brevard Opera’s performance of Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette, and performed principal clarinet on many other notable works, including Sibelius’s Violin Concerto, Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique, Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra, Smetana’s Má Vlast, and Respighi’s Fontane di Roma.
When she is not performing, Ms. Winkler enjoys teaching. She taught both beginner and intermediate players at Wunderlich Intermediate School, then moved to more advanced players at The Woodlands College Park High School. While at TWCPHS, Ms. Winkler gave masterclasses on All-State Etude preparation, evaluated Destination Imagination Fine Arts students, and participated in the SAI Music Sorority.
Ms. Winkler’s primary teachers include Carrie Smith, Chester Rowell, Mark Nuccio, and Steve Cohen.
M.M University of Texas (Exp. 2023)
B.M. Oberlin College and Conservatory
Evan Schnurr graduated from Oberlin Conservatory with a BM in Clarinet Performance in Spring 2020, and will be starting his masters studies at the University of Texas at Austin in early 2021. Throughout his time at Oberlin, Evan has performed extensively with school ensembles and professional orchestras alike, including the Cleveland Pops Orchestra, Youngstown Symphony, and Firelands Symphony in Sandusky, Ohio, with numerous appearances as principal clarinet under his belt. As a soloist, he was selected as a winner of Oberlin’s Oakton Honors Recital competition and a runner-up at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Competition at Texas Music Festival. Evan’s primary teachers have included Richard Hawkins, Jonathan Gunn, and Charles Salinger, and he has received additional instruction from members of the Philadelphia Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, and Houston Symphony.
Evan has worked with Oberlin and the Northern Ohio Youth Orchestra as a private lesson teacher, and has had experience with students of all ages and levels! After finishing school, Evan hopes to teach and perform full-time, with a focus on promoting the works of living composers and collaborating with musicians and artists of all disciplines.
D.M.A. University of Illinois at
M.M McGill University
Julia Gjebic is a doctoral candidate in oboe performance and a graduate fellow at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She received her MM in oboe performance and MA in music theory from McGill University (Montreal) and she completed her undergraduate at Grand Valley State University (MI).
Her primary teachers include John Dee, Ted Baskin, Marlen Vavrikova, and Dan Stolper.
Julia has performed across the Midwest and Quebec, most recently with the Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra, Sinfonia da Camera, and the Kankakee Valley Symphony Orchestra. In addition to teaching oboe privately to students ranging from young beginners to amateur adults, she has taught undergraduate-level music theory and music appreciation. Her doctoral research focuses on seamlessly incorporating musicianship skills into instrumental study and she brings elements of her research into her private teaching. Ultimately, she wants to help students become independent, thoughtful, and confident musicians and is constantly exploring ways to adapt her teaching so every student can achieve this goal.
M.M University of Miami
Miami-Dade County, Florida
B.M Louisiana State University
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Thomas Edward McKee is a classically trained tenor trombonist, private instructor, composer and arranger currently based out of Miami, FL. Whether he’s performing the likes of romantic trombone works, swinging through the jazz genre or experimenting with all sorts of new sounds, Thomas enjoys playing all things trombone.
Thomas attended Louisiana State University as an undergraduate where he studied with Steve Menard for 3 years and Dr. Hana Beloglavec for his senior year. Highlights at LSU include performing as a soloist in LSU’s Jazz Lab Band alongside Wycliffe Gordon, touring with the LSU Wind Ensemble across the states of Louisiana and Texas, leading a high school master class for the “Stately Oaks” wind camp as well as performing as a featured soloist with the LSU Jazz Ensemble on the tune “Blue Cellophane.”
Thomas completed his Master’s degree in Trombone Performance at the University of Miami’s highly acclaimed Frost School of Music in the Spring of 2019 where he studied with Professor Tim Conner. The following school year he returned to UM to pursue an Artist Diploma, serving as a Teaching Assistant for the Frost Trombone Studio in addition to being a Fellow for the Henry Mancini Institute. Since he began fall of 2017, his highlights have included performing as a principal trombonist for the Frost Wind Ensemble and the Frost Symphony Orchestra, leading master classes for Frost’s high school honor band camp as well as a couple stints conducting for the Frost Trombone Choir. Outside of the University, Thomas has performed with the South Florida Master Chorale, Nebraska based touring group “Rock Twist” featuring Billy McGuigan, the Miami Sousa Band, the Space Coast Symphony, Southwest Florida Symphony Orchestra, Nu Deco Ensemble and his own chamber group, Category 5 Brass Quintet.
M.M. University of Florida
B.M University of Iowa
Iowa City, Iowa
Nick Westphal is a freelance music and instructor of horn based in the Des Moines area. Westphal graduated from the University of Iowa with a Bachelors of Music Performance, studying under Jeffrey Agrell. Westphal also earned a Masters Degree in Music Performance from the University of Florida. While at Florida, he held a graduate assistantship, studying horn under Dr. Paul Basler.
As a freelance musician, Westphal has performed with many orchestras throughout Iowa, Illinois, and Florida. These include, among others, the Des Moines Symphony Orchestra, the Quincy Symphony Orchestra, and the Gainesville Symphony Orchestra. Westphal has appeared as soloist with the Timber City Band and the University of Florida Gator Horn Choir. As a lesson instructor, Westphal has taught students at a variety of experience levels from elementary to the undergraduate level. He has appeared as guest lecturer and performer at the University of Iowa, and has been a lesson instructor and coach for several schools districts in Florida and Iowa.
In the free 30 minute trial lesson you will: meet your teacher, discuss your goals, and begin one-on-one instruction, no commitment necessary.
An amazing solution for anyone who wants to learn music, but doesn’t know where they’d find the time! Every lesson is tailored to you! The instructors are so helpful, kind, patient, and genuinely good at teaching…[they] turned my dream of learning piano into a valuable yet inexpensive reality. I’d never go anywhere else!”
– Arnell, student since 2018
Frequently Asked Questions
Are these lessons suitable for children?
Absolutely! Several of our teachers have degrees in pedagogy and have specifically trained in teaching children. We accept students age 5 and up, although students under 13 should have a parent in the room with them for lessons. For children who are too young to read music right away, our teachers will do rhythm games, ear training, and even improvisation in order to develop your child’s musical abilities.
Are these lessons suitable for adults?
Of course! We have many teachers who are great with adult students, and the scheduling flexibility that we offer is particularly helpful for many adults. In most cases, instead of using a pre-planned method book, your teacher will simply ask about your musical interests and then create a personalized plan to help you reach your goals.
How are these different from in-person lessons?
They are very similar to in-person lessons, except more affordable and more convenient. You will still meet with the same teacher each lesson and interact with them in real time. You will learn technique, music theory, how to read music, and all your favorite pieces.
How often are lessons offered?
You can take lessons once or twice a week, or we can do custom subscriptions if you would prefer to take lessons more or less often. Once you schedule and take a trial lesson, you’re welcome to change the time of your weekly lesson at any point by discussing it directly with your teacher.
How much do lessons cost?
Lessons are $30 per half hour, $42 for 45 minutes, and $55 per hour. We automatically charge per lesson, so you’ll never have to pay for multiple lessons ahead of time. We can also start, pause, or stop your lesson subscription whenever you want, no questions asked.
Is there a discount for taking multiple lessons per week, or having multiple children take lessons?
Yes, as long as the lessons are with the same teacher, we offer $5 off per additional lesson per week. So if you’re taking half hour lessons twice a week or have two children taking half hour lessons, you will only pay $55 instead of the $50 (as in $30×2) that two half hour lessons would typically cost
What if my child has a learning disability?
In that case, we will pair your child with one of our teachers who has experience with working with children with learning disabilities. Even if your child has difficulties, for example, with staying focused or learning to read music, there is still much to be gained from music lessons. The teacher will easily adapt and include rhythm games, improvisation, ear training, and other musical exercises that suit the level and capabilities of the student.
Do students take from the same teacher each time?
Yes. We’ll do our best to match you with the teacher who best suits your skill level and interests, and as long as you keep wanting to take lessons from that teacher, you can keep taking from that teacher. If you want to try lessons with a different teacher, just let us know, and we will pick a new teacher for you.