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MM, University of Louisville, Guitar Performance & Pedagogy BM, Middle Tennessee State University, Guitar Performance
2013, 2014 - Undergraduate Research Experience and Creative Activity (URECA) Grant 2013, 2014 - Soloist Recital for Middle Tennessee State University Honors Assembly at Hinton Hall. 2015- Solo and Quartet performance with MTSU GQ hosted by the St. Andrew's Sewanee School Concert Series at McCrory Hall. 2017 - Cardinal Guitar Quartet performance as an opening act for the Aviv String Quartet hosted by the Louisville Chamber Society. 2018 - Soloist Recital for MM degree at Margaret Comstock Concert Hall
I began studying the guitar in the summer of 2010 before auditioning at Middle Tennessee State University in the fall of 2011. Between 2013-2015, I began completing transcriptions for various sized guitar ensembles of Scriabin, Debussy, Ravel, Bach and Schubert piano and chamber works made possible with research grants from the Undergraduate Research Experience and Creative Activity Foundation. The fall of 2013, I began instructing soloists and ensembles of wide-ranging skill-levels, performing in masterclasses for world-class performers and pedagogues, competing in solo and chamber music festivals, and offering recitals in solo, chamber, and guitar orchestra settings. Last Spring, I graduated from the University of Louisville where I received my Master of Music Degree in Guitar Performance and Pedagogy. My love of and passion for music, education, and creativity since becoming a professional musician has transformed into a way of life. I am a hyperactive musician who is currently performing, composing, transcribing, arranging, lecturing, instructing, and recording. Composing is my ultimate love, but for me, rounded musicianship means traversing the spectrum of disciplines in the field of music.
During my time as a graduate teaching assistant for the University of Louisville, I learned the importance of effective and appropriate communication between students and instructors teaching class guitar, guitar ensembles, private instruction, and class ukulele. My guitar pedagogy background allows me to approach each student with a variety of styles and techniques that help streamline student progress and keep the passion of making music thriving. My students are encouraged to compete with and offer recitals of the music we study, whether it be standard repertoire or an original work. I have worked with students between the ages of 6 and 77 years. My drive for and enthusiasm about music and education is what makes my time with students an insightful and enjoyable experience.
I emphasize the method of divide and conquer; the idea that if we are confronted with a complex problem, then we isolate each difficulty in that complex into a collection of simple problems. We master simple situations on the guitar individually until we are performing complex tasks that were once physically impossible. Ultimately, I think a blend of competence in technique, tone, and interpretation with a comprehensive outlook over specific works, studies, and the instrument itself will foster rapid development in a beginner, define the path of an intermediate, and supplement the advanced player.
With children who are just beginning, I use a rote approach similar to the Suzuki Method; e.g., First, I find an appropriate traditional melody that the student knows and loves, then I play it for them, and have them emulate what I am doing. Next, I notate it myself or print the notation, so the student can immediately start learning how to read and write music -through exposure and guided interpretation. Further, I transmit expertise on the elements of music and analysis of music in way that is effective and age appropriate; i.e., specific details about tone, melody, rhythm, harmony, balance, form, performance practice, historical context, and so much more. Slowly, I will begin to introduce solo repertoire appropriate for a first recital.
With beginner and intermediate adults, I use a variety of traditional methods to expose students to the wealth of guitar styles throughout world history. Aaron Shearer's Learning the Classical Guitar series, Hal Leonard's Guitar School series, and Emilio Pujol's Guitar School series are among my favorites to work with, but I will use the student's aspirations to guide our focus. I begin to slowly introduce appropriate solo repertoire as the student begins to grasp the fundamentals. Recitals and competitions are strongly encouraged as students develop.
For advanced players, we will work on whatever you wish! I specialize in performance, so if you are preparing for a gig, audition, recital, or competition, I can help guide your playing to the next level of focus and refinement. I also offer a wide variety of guitar instruction on specific topics like performance practice, fret-board theory, improvisation, score study, recording, editing, mixing, and many other important topics.
I always treat students and families with care and respect, and you can expect me to always give you my best when it comes to my guitar instruction. Trust is very important when your children are involved, and you can count on me to treat your children as my own. I am on time, take time to listen when you have a concern, and spend time to solve any problem we may encounter. I always own up to mistakes -on the rare occasion that I am human. I create a supportive learning environment that fosters excellence, and rewards progress with greater opportunity. My studio subscribes to a hybrid composite of Suzuki and traditional methods which includes music appreciation, ear training, music theory, relevant history and a generous portion of instrumental technique. This is practiced in an environment of intellectual growth, mutual respect and genuine fun. From the beginning and throughout our time together, l will nurture technically sound practice habits and routines while introducing music notation, theory, and formal concepts. Feel free to contact me, and I will return your call or email in a timely and professional manner.
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