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BA, Rutgers University, Psychology BA, Rutgers University, Theater Arts
2016: Performed nationally with folk band "The Roving Blades" in various venues and festivals, violin and voice. 2015: Performed in the Off-Broadway show, "The Greatest Pirate Story Never Told". 2009-2014: Played violin, saxophone, and bassoon in various pit orchestras and performed in various musicals. 2005- 2010: Performed with progressive rock band "Shakedown" and wrote several dozen original songs, piano and voice. 1997-2009: Performed in various orchestras, chamber strings groups, wind ensembles, and marching band on violin, saxophone, and bassoon.
Hey! I am a performer, and I love to find various ways to perform as a musician, actor, comedian, and teacher/tutor/mentor. I love to connect and communicate with audiences and/or students through my voice, my jokes, or my instruments. I graduated from Rutgers University in 2012 with a bachelors in Psychology and Theater Arts, and spent much of my time performing on stage in musicals and plays. I proudly identify as a "jack of all trades" and am constantly using the various mediums of performing to learn, connect, feel, and gain the opportunity to experience something new.
I never settled on one instrument; continuously collecting new instruments throughout my childhood. I was always excited for a new technical challenge and to explore a new genre of music, and I have a unique relationship of each of the instruments I play. My teaching experience has been similar: I began teaching violin lessons 8 years ago, and I have since become a swimming instructor, theater/improv teacher and program director, and international ESL teacher. One thing I have in my years teaching various skills and subjects outside of the school system is that anyone who wants to learn something can become emboldened with excitement and passion when they are inspired. With music as such a fundamental part of all human cultures, finding out that you get to be apart of a world that has left you in awe at some point or another in some way or another is massively inspiring and "cool", and that realization is the goal of my music teaching. From there, we can learn technical information, exercises and skill building, music theory, ear training, instrument care, transposing, etc., but I strive for each of my students to start with that "a-ha" moment.
My teaching methods shift and change based on instrument, skill and age. For teens and adults, I like to find out what type of music my students listen to and gear our training toward using the instrument the choose to become a musician. But all instruments require technical exercises and technique training, so for all ages I like the Strictly Strings series and Suzuki method for violin, and Essential Elements for Saxophone, Piano and Bassoon. I don't typically use a method series for Voice, as I use a series of vocal exercises I have memorized over the years from my own vocal teacher for technical voice training and warm-up. It's important to note that for beginner piano students I will use a method, but for more advanced-beginners and intermediate players I focus on chord theory and rhythmic playing, as I am a self taught pianist and do not teach classical piano.
I like my lessons to be fun! I like to start my lesson with a "music swap": we each play one minute of a song that we found that week from youtube or spotify and take 30-60 seconds to say why we found it interesting or inspiring (it can be any genre). We then aim to discuss and practice a new technical skill and use exercises to develop it, we work on a song from the method series or a song that the student wants to work on (I often transpose pop/rock songs for my students), and then rhythm training, ear training, and music theory concepts are interspersed throughout. We then finish with a play-along to a song where we will work on and develop improvisational skills and identifying melody lines by ear (don't worry it's not nearly as scary as it sounds). This is an example of a lesson breakdown for one of my students, but I naturally customize the lesson based on my students needs, as well as age, skill, and instrument.
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