I began studying piano when I was six and my love for music led me to earning a music degree from UW-Eau Claire and Western Washington University in Washington state.  I continued my music studies with notable jazz, classical, orchestration, world music and education teachers in New York City, Los Angeles, Seattle, Boston, Belize, and Morocco.


I've been teaching piano, composition, improvisation, and music technology for over 10 years.  In addition to teaching, I'm also a soundtrack composer for animation, kid's educational apps, video games, and films.  I love playing music and continue to stay active as a performer in local bands and music ensembles.



Teaching philosophy:


I enjoy teaching students of all ages and musical abilities with varied interests and goals. I find that the most rewarding part of teaching is helping my students learn ways to love playing and listening to music as much as I do.


I teach a well-rounded music education program that focuses on reading music, performing, composing, improvisation, and music theory.  My students learn to develop a relaxed and natural piano technique - preventing harmful habits or injury.


My student-centered teaching method allows students to play music they like and want to learn while incorporating a solid foundation of classic piano music.  Students are also encouraged to experiment with composing music and improvising in a variety of music genres.



Some quotes from students and parents:


"You have a true gift in working with children.  Your patience, gentle persistence and praise give your students a safe environment to try new things.  You have shown Claire that trying something new can be rewarding.  As a result she has a new found confidence to experiment with music and try new things in other areas."  - Rusty W.


“Eli continues to really enjoy piano.  There are many times when he'll just sit down to play with no prompting from me... which I value very highly.  And I think much of this is a tribute to how enjoyable you make the whole process.  So thanks.” - Julie S.


“Mike was creative and energetic and made the learning interesting and fun for our daughter.  He is a born teacher -- engaging, excited, interested, and respectful of his students.  We have pinched ourselves these last 3 years for finding such a wonderful teacher and person.”  - Aimee W.


“You’ve been great for Bella, and we feel quite blessed to have had you for the last two years.” - Renee G. “...we are impressed with how much she has learned and with the fact that she actually likes to sit down and play the piano on her own.” - David B.