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Jeff has emerged as a versatile and powerful musical force. His talents as an interpreter of new, old and diverse styles have made him uniquely suited to promoting new music, transcriptions and jazz improvisation during an exciting period for the saxophone. Some of Jeff’s most recent efforts in chamber music have proven fruitful. His saxophone quartet, the Estrella Consort recently returned from a nine-day tour of Ecuador and has been invited to perform in the prestigious Fischoff International Chamber Music Competition. His trio, Trikaya, was awarded the 2012 Music Teachers of North America’s second prize for woodwind chamber music. Jeff played lead alto saxophone in the Arizona State University Concert Jazz Band and anchored the horn section of The JJ's, one of Phoenix's most popular bands. His abilities as a jazz artist and as a woodwind specialist earned him a position with the 2011 touring production of Leonard Bernstein’s West Side Story. He also conducted the Scottsdale Musical Theater Company production of Guys and Dolls. An avid proponent of New Music, Jeff has commissioned original scores from composers in Arizona, California, New York, Washington and China. He has premiered many new works for saxophone including his own soprano saxophone transcriptions of César Franck’s A Maj Violin Sonata and Olivier Messian’s Fantasy for Violin and Piano. The soon-to-be-published Franck transcription is already seeing use within the saxophone community.
I typically divide my lessons into quarters so that the first part is just scale work. The second part is scale patterns and technique. The third portion is prepared materials, and the final portion is listening. I bring an Ipod with close to 750,000 songs on it for kids to choose pieces featuring their own instruments for inspirational purposes. I find that listening can be just as informative as pressing down keys:)
Recently returned from Japan, I served as Co-Principal Clarinetist of the Hyogo Performing Arts Center Orchestra since 2011. With 3 nationwide tours, I performed all over Japan, appearing regularly on the nationally televised program "Daimei no Nai Ongakukai" televised nationally. In 2010 I earned my Master of Music degree at the University of Southern California, studying with master teacher Yehuda Gilad. Orginally from Orland Park, I studied with my childhood idols in the Chicago Symphony. First with Larry Combs (former Principal Clarinet 1975-2007) at DePaul University (BM 2007). Later, I was accepted into the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, the training orchestra of the Chicago Symphony. There I had the chance to work closely with John Bruce Yeh (Assistant Principal Clarinet 1979-present) and a variety of conductors who worked with the Chicago Symphony.
I began teaching during my years as an undergraduate. I have worked with private students of a wide variety of ages. I have focused on sound production, saxophone technique, ear training, music theory, and repertoire in lessons. I keep an open mind as a teacher and do not try to push students into playing music that they are not interested in. Rather, I encourage the students to follow their own musical interests and draw upon my own musical background to help them play the music to the best of their ability.
I have been teaching private clarinet lessons in Chicagoland to complete beginners and intermediate students for six years. I began in high school, where I traveled to students' homes in the suburbs of La Grange, La Grange Park, and Brookfield for weekly lessons. From 2013 to 2015, I was the clarinet instructor in DePauw University's college preparatory program and gave lessons to students in the Greencastle, Indiana area. My students from my home studio and DePauw preparatory group experienced great successs in their school band programs, and many were placed as 1st chair in their seating auditions. In the summers of 2014 and 2015, I served as the clarinet faculty for Lyons Township High School's Junior High Band Camp in Western Springs, IL, where I played alongside 6th-8th grade students and led group lessons covering general technique and program-specific repertoire. In addition to teaching in traditional settings, I have engaged in "teaching artistry" sessions that taught English and literature concepts through chamber music at middle schools in Greencastle, IN and Orland Park, IL.
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In home clarinet lessons are extremely convenient for parents and students alike. Studying in home is no different than studying in a studio. Lessons are generally once a week.
Taking clarinet lessons is a great way for a child to get started learning music. The clarinet is very portable, so as long as you have a nice sturdy case, it can be transported to and from school and rehearsals with ease. Many students who are studying in band or wind ensemble in their school program, will also wish to take private lessons to enhance their playing. In lessons students will learn how to read music, rhythms, and the technique of playing clarinet.
There are usually two types of clarinets available, wood and plastic. Plastic clarinets are less expensive, but a wood clarinet is certain to be more durable and has a longer lifespan as a result. A wood clarinet will also produce a warmer and more professional sound. We suggest visiting your local music store and speaking to the professionals there to find out which instrument would best suit the needs of your student and your current budget. Once you are working with a clarinet teacher in Musika's network, the teacher can also provide suggestions as to the best clarinet models or the best stores to get your instrument locally. Every clarinet should come with 5 basic parts: the bell, the lower joint, the upper joint, and the barrel. A mouthpiece will need to be purchased as well. Make sure to inspect the instrument and be sure it includes these things.
We have many adult students taking clarinet lessons. Learning this instrument is a great way for many adults to pick up a new skill and have fun in the process! In just a few lessons, the teachers in our network can help you notice significant progress.
Our recommended starting age for clarinet is around age 8 or 9. The clarinet has many keys, so the most significant factor to keep in mind is whether or not the student's hands are large enough to facilitate playing. It is also important that the student has developed the lung capacity to play. The clarinet is also a great choice for musicians already familiar with other wind instruments.
Review by Joshua Thompson
I have known Erin since I attended graduate school at the Hartt School in Connecticut. Last year she came to the college I teach at to give a master class and talk about her experiences as a musician abroad. She has proven that she is a capable and wonderful musician and educator. I highly recommend studying with her if you're lucky enough to have the opportunity!
Review by Marlo
Danette is a delightful instructor. She always brings a wealth of knowledge, excitement, and enthusiasm to piano lessons with my daughter. She is not only skilled at piano, but she has a wonderful voice quality that she uses to help convey certain techniques and to highlight various points where she intends to draw the students attention.
Review by PJ Williams
My daughter, Valarie is one of the original members of the Enrichment Center Percussion Ensemble under the guidance of Aaron. He patiently worked with Valarie as well as the other five members individually and as a group to produce music that has been shared and enjoyed locally as well as nationally. He has the ability to seek out the strengths of each student while building confidence. Through his teachings, not only had Valarie learned how to produce and enjoy music, but also responsibility and so many life skills for everyday living.
Review by Queen Natalia
Lara is highly intelligent and knowledgeable in her profession. She is cheerful and personable, and has established a good rapport with students and staff alike. I have found Lara to be a highly competent, personable, patient, kind-hearted, and deeply caring person who is skilled professionally and interpersonally.
Review by Brianne Hancock
Martina has been teaching our daughter violin since early 2015. Every time our daughter has a lesson she comes away in such a great mood - she really enjoys her lessons! Martina is positive and encouraging and adjusts her teaching to help our daughter learn the best way for her learning needs. We were curious about how online lessons would work, and it turns out that they work really well. The 1:1 time and ability to teach from a distance make it work just as well as in person. We've had moves and schedule changes and Martina has been very flexible for us - which made such a big difference in making violin lessons accessible. Absolutely recommend her!
Review by Jeff N.
Travis is an extremely knowledgeable guitarist and teacher. Travis is equally comfortable in playing/teaching jazz, rock, blues, or classical styles. I really like the way he explains things and he has the ability to make difficult material seem simpler. Travis is very likeable, enthusiastic, and always very professional. I think Travis would be great teaching either children or adults because he's very patient. My learning experience with Travis has been outstanding. He taught me some great techniques for chord substitution and for soloing. I'll continue to work with Travis because he inspires me to be a better guitarist. I think he could really help me with composing because he writes some great songs too! Thanks Travis!
Review by Lucinda
Melissa is very encouraging, positive, supportive and patient. She knows how to explain the technical details of flute and music notation to kids in a way that makes sense to them. She has been reliable so far turning up on time and calling if there is a need to reschedule. I would definitely recommend her to others.
Review by Steven G.
Laura is the kind of teacher you wish you had in all your studies: gracious, easy-going, light-hearted, yet behind the easy going exterior is an excellent musical mind with everything at her fingertips. I've had about 5 teachers in my life who count as really influential people, and Laura easily fits that category. She lets you be yourself so that you are fully present rather than old-school doctrinaire style, what I call "stiff as a German, sig-heil" teachers. She's the polar opposite. Brava, Laura! Thank you so much!
Review by Ruslan
She is the most amazing teacher ever. She is not only w great teacher but she's so fun to work with. She has taught me so many things in such little amount of time things I didn't even know I could do. I recommend Andrea to everyone. She is an amazing singer and cares a lot about her students. She's the best!!
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