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BA, UMass, Amherst Commonwealth Honors College, Music (focus in Jazz)
2014- Produced (and created) instructional videos on musical terminology for a best-selling college textbook, published by Pearson (to be posted here when released)
2013- Downbeat Magazine Student Music Award Category Winner- Original Arrangement
2012- Downbeat Magazine Student Music Award Category Winner- Original Arrangement
2011- Represented UMass at an international jazz conference in Sao Paolo, Brazil
2008-2012- UMass Chancellor’s Talent Award
I'm a passionate musician, with a deep knowledge of many styles of music. I am equally motivated to help my students find success on the saxophone or clarinet, whatever their goals are. I have had the great fortune to play music on 4 continents, and recently played my first show (of hopefully more!) at the House of Blues in Boston, to a sold-out crowd. I have taken hundreds of lessons over the years from masters such as Dave Liebman, Gary Smulyan, and Lynn Klock. Not only do I have a wide span of knowledge, but a willingness to pass on this knowledge and help students reach their individual goals- no two students have the same goals, and I respect that!
I was recently hired by Pearson to create a series of instructional videos to accompany their new textbook. In them, I teach students about different words one uses to write about music (timbre, tempo, etc). The publisher has called me "a natural, with a colloquial style that is very engaging and easy to understand." While I am otherwise new to teaching music, I have taught sailing for the past 9 summers of my life. I have taught hundreds of people of all ages how to sail, and the takeaway skill is that I have developed the ability to clearly and easily teach someone something new- that is second nature to me.
Primarily, one must produce a high-quality sound out of the instrument. I use the widely-regarded Liebman method to help students produce a great sound out of the horn. Beginners and advanced students alike will focus on improving their sound while studying with me. I also relate everything back to the student's goals and their current skill level. If they are new to the instrument, we start with the basics and I have books that I recommend for this. If they want to make their school's concert band, or state's district or allstate band, we can work on the required rep. If they'd like to learn to improvise or get better at improvisation no matter what style of music (I believe a diverse musican is a complete musician), I have many ways to help students improve, focusing on performing licks in 12 keys, song study and transcription, "hearing before you play," and jamming with me!
Watchign a student improve right before your eyes is incredibly rewarding, as I have learned from my many years of teaching sailing. I think it is crucial to keep the student engaged so that this improvement remains attainable and consistent. This is accomplished by setting many small goals and by tailoring the lessons to the student's interest. If they enjoy classical rep, we will work on that, but if their favorite band is the Dave Matthews Band, we can also work on playing music in that style and many others like it as well. There are many things to be learned from all styles of music, and as I always say, a diverse musician is a complete one, whether you want to be a professional or a hobbyist.
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