Teaching Philosophy

I love teaching because I find people, music, and learning a fascinating combination. In lessons, I emphasize critical and independent thinking. My aim as an educator is to help students take the discipline and life experiences gained through their music studies and apply these to whatever endeavor they choose going forward.

With me you get a teacher who brings a wealth of experience as a versatile performing artist. I’ve performed with ensembles from the Malaysian Philharmonic to the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, appeared nationally with brass ensembles including the Rodney Marsalis Philadelphia Big Brass, performed with Broadway touring shows and have done extensive work as a recording artist on premiere labels such as Motown Records, RCA Records and Atlantic Records.

My student’s successes include acceptances to Juilliard, Yale, Eastman, Northwestern University, San Francisco Conservatory, Indiana University, and Cincinnati Conservatory of Music. Many students have won prizes in national and international solo and ensemble competitions. My students have also performed with the Boston Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, Houston Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, Boston Pops, and the U.S. Army Jazz Ambassadors among others. 

My goal is to have students be active partners in their learning. In weekly lessons and trombone choir rehearsals students are active participants in the process of analysis, synthesis, evaluation, transfer, and application. This can take the form of analyzing audio and video recordings of their performances and comparing these to those of celebrated artists. We also focus on analyzing the performances and master class presentations of a steady stream of visiting artists, and debating disparate pedagogical philosophies.  All of these aspects are vital to a student’s growth. 

When accepting students into my university or pre-college studio, I’m thinking of their long-range trajectory as both musicians and citizens. Meeting individuals where they are and building them up. This is about more than helping them become the best musician they can be. It’s also about developing into professionals and exemplary human beings. To do this we focus on everything from time management skills to freelance etiquette, and how to present themselves in the professional world. That way they become role models for the next generation.