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Doctoral Degree: Northeastern University
Master Degree: University of Illinois
Bachelor Degree: UMass
2x Grammy Music Educator of the Year award nominee
Teacher of the Year for the City if Springfield
I'm a passionate and motivated instructor who loves working with students and sharing my love of music. In 2002, I graduated from UMass with a Bachelor of Music degree in Percussion Performance & Music Education and then a Master's in Percussion from University of Illinois.Performing all over the country has been one of the greater experiences of my life as a musician to include the Midwest and all over the Northeast. I have also have the opportunity to play with great artists like Julie Andrews, Paul Winter, and Mitch Chakour.
My teaching experience dates back to my college days, as I began teaching private lessons part time 20 years ago, and have been consistently teaching high school band and percussion for the last 15 years. Encouraging regular practice on a consistent schedule is one of the key points I like to emphasize for younger students, as it tends to help the student progress and gain a passion for the instrument. I've also found that a combination of classical and modern music can go a long way in helping students enjoy the instrument and motivate them to practice and continue to learn. If a student isn't having fun in their lessons, then I'm not doing my job! My students are encouraged to enter competitions and recitals, as well as work on composing their own original material, so they can feel good about their accomplishments and stay motivated to learn. I'm always looking to bring on new students of all ages
For beginning students who are children, I typically start with Hal Leonard's Fresh Approach. Once the student has progressed to have a grasp of the fundamentals, I will begin to introduce solo repertoire appropriate for their first recital performance. For adults, I try to find out what the student is interested in, and guide my instruction accordingly to keep the lessons engaging and fun, no matter their ability level. I also develop individual curriculum based on student's short and long term goals.
Nothing is more rewarding than seeing one of my students develop a passion for music! Therefore, it's important that each student progresses at his or her own pace. I encourage this by setting realistic goals for my students at each lesson. Acknowledging accomplishments helps fuel a students desire to progress, and makes students eager to learn more. By trying to find out what inspires the student, I can successfully tailor my instruction to their wants and needs. I believe each student needs to have an active role in the learning process so they feel included in the learning phenomenon.
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