Wasco Music Lessons

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About James P.

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Wheaton, IL

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About James
Early Guitar Studies & Pit Orchestra Performances (1995-2002)

I began taking guitar lessons at the age of 11 with blues/jazz guitarist Tom Castonzo, a frequent performer, bandleader and teacher in and around the Chicago area. My studies with Tom lasted for many years and covered various musical and technical aspects of many different styles ranging from jazz to classical and everything in between. In 2002, I began performing in pit orchestras for various musicals including Jesus Christ Superstar, Les Miserable, The Wiz, Little Shop of Horrors, and Seussical the Musical.

Original Music Projects (2003-Present)

From 2003-2008, I wrote and performed music for 2 different progressive rock bands: Dream Haven and The Unit Theory. Dream Haven released the EP entitled “Nostalgia is Five Frame” and The Unit Theory released a ful
l-length album entitled “Seed.” Both bands performed all over the greater Chicago-land area and helped me hone my skills as an electric guitarist. Throughout this time, we shared the stage with national touring & recording acts Fear Factory, Mastodon, Enuff Z’nuff, and Algernon, to name a few. I now play lead guitar in the Chicago-based alternative rock band Davenport Ed and am having started an all-instrumental acoustic/rock trio with two percussionists.

Undergraduate Studies (College of Dupage and Northern Illinois University: 2002-2008)

After high school, I attended the College of Dupage (COD) and began studying jazz guitar with Dr. Zvonimir Tot. Towards the end of my studies at COD, I developed an interest in classical guitar and took lessons from Steve Ramsdell. After I received my Associate’s Degree in Music from COD I started teaching private guitar lessons at various suburban Chicagoland locations. I graduated from COD in 2004 with an Associate in Music degree. In the fall of 2005, I started my Bachelor’s studies in Classical Guitar Performance at Northern Illinois University (NIU) with Fareed Haque (Winner of “Best World Guitarist” in Guitar Magazine). While at NIU, I continued to teach & perform up until I graduated in May 2008 with a Bachelor’s degree in Classical Guitar Performance.

Graduate Studies (New England Conservatory of Music: 2008-2010)

I started my graduate studies in August 2008 at the New England Conservatory of Music (NEC) in Boston, under the tutelage of world-renowned guitarist Eliot Fisk. As an active performer in the greater Boston area, I made it a goal to bring the classical guitar to unorthodox venues such as senior centers, local TV, hospitals, dialysis treatment centers, and even juvenile halls! While at NEC, I started to take an interest in transcription, which is the art of adapting a composition for a voice or instrument other than the original. Eliot Fisk is a master at this, and his guidance was profound. In June 2010, I graduated from NEC with a Master’s in Music (with Academic Honors) for Classical Guitar Performance. My master's recital was a tour-de-force of virtuosic classical, acoustic, and electric guitar pieces with music ranging from J.S. Bach to Joaquin Rodrigo to Steve Vai.

Flamenco Guitar & Ritmo Flamenco (2009-Present)

During my time at NEC, I was fortunate enough to meet Grisha Goryachev, a master flamenco guitarist. Grisha introduced me to the basic principals of flamenco guitar and proved to be a wonderful resource. I continue my flamenco guitar studies by learning historical flamenco recordings entirely by ear. Short of living in Spain for extended periods of time, I have found this to be the purest way of learning. I am now the flamenco guitarist for Ritmo Flamenco, an ensemble that features dancer Diane Campbell.

Professional Musician & Awards (2010 – Present)

I moved back to Chicago in July 2010 and have since had hundreds of performances that include weddings, corporate events, restaurants, recitals, and more. My reputation as a premiere performing guitarist has grown rapidly in the past 2 years, and I earned 2 awards at the end of 2012: “Top Solo Guitarist” on the world’s largest entertainment site which is Gig Master and “Best of Wedding” (the world’s largest wedding-planning site). I am a regular featured performing artist at premiere restaurants in the Chicago suburbs including The Cellar Bistro in Wheaton, Eddie Merlot’s in Warrenville, and Wildwood Steakhouse in Geneva.

*** Lesson Details ***
***Teaching students ages 10+***

My first goal as an instructor is to get an idea of what the student's goals are as a guitarist, and then we start working towards that goal. This means that while the basic concepts are covered (chords, some sight-reading in most cases, scales, etc), no student curriculum is exactly the same. After a few months of studying with me, no matter what style of music, we will have learned notes, chords, and songs that are of interest to the student. Then, we will discuss how all of those elements tie together and map out a practice routine. A goal I have for every student is to create a realistic, efficient, and enjoyable practice routine that produces results.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Music stands, guitars (acoustic, electric, classical), cable/amp, appropriate paper materials & books for learning music.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I do not travel to lessons.

*** Specialties ***
I specialize in classical, rock, pop, & music theory.
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Reviews
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David June 29, 2017
· Classical Guitar · In home
James is a great teacher able to break down complex music and communicate how to play it.
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Mike McCullough April 5, 2016
· Guitar · In home
Jim is a great instructor, and a great guy. I feel like I am making good progress after only 5 weeks.
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Lisa G. March 12, 2014
· Guitar ·
Talented Teacher and Guitarist

Jim teaches my daughter guitar. He is her fourth guitar teacher and by far the best one of all. She has had lessons from him for the past two years. Besides talent, he has the schooling to back him up. She has learned a lot from Jim, and he truly listens to her input. It's amazing how good he is and how good my daughter has become. Jim is also very patient, positive and motivating.
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James P.

James P.

Wheaton, IL 60187
(10)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Randal K.

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Mundelein, IL
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About Randal
Love of music inspired to learn bass and guitar over 15 years ago. When I began teaching my young daughter guitar I realized how much I also love to teach. For the past 3 years I have been blessed to be able to combine these two passions into one.
Originally self taught, I have recently studied
bass, guitar, and theory at Chicago's Old Town School of Folk Music. Coming from a self taught background, I fully understand the importance of a solid foundation. In the beginning of my playing, after being uninspired by formal lessons, I chose to branch out on my own. This decision definitely slowed my musical growth. Having to fend for yourself is always more difficult than having a guiding hand helping you along. I enjoy passing on the knowledge it took me years to accumulate.
My musical influences range from Rock to Reggae, Blues to Folk.
Some of my favorite players include Ben Harper, Jack Johnson, David Gilmour, Bob Marley, Family Man, Glen Phillips, and Bradley Nowell. Although the bass guitar was my first instrument, and learning reggae bass is the reason I began, the acoustic guitar is my instrument of choice. I am constantly amazed at the musical range it can provide. From beautiful finger picked melodies, to it's raw percussive qualities.
However, I find equal enjoyment sharing my love of both instruments.

*** Lesson Details ***
My mission is to provide the foundation, through a relaxed and patient approach, for each individual student to reach their own maximum potential. We will cover basic techniques and theory, but we will learn how these are relative to actually playing music that the student is interested in. Let's face it, students want to play music. They are not taking lessons to learn what a pentatonic scale is, even though they will probably use it to play their favorite solo. Many beginners stop playing because they get caught up in the journey, and lose focus on the destination. If these techniques and exercises are shown to be relative to actually playing music, most students can't stop practicing, instead of viewing practice as work, or boring.
Each students' lesson is designed specifically for the individual. Handouts will be provided to offer support and reference, but the students desire and willingness to practice on their own will dictate how fast we move along.
The ultimate goal for me is to provide a relaxed atmosphere where students are having fun doing what they love. There will be plenty of time to learn complex chord shapes and theories. I simply want to create players who once they have started, will never stop playing.

*** Studio Equipment ***
I am available for lessons given in your home or mine. I provide small recording equipment, and drum machine. Each student will be able to record a cd of their playing to help in the learning process.

*** Travel Equipment ***
Recording equipment, drum machine, amps, and lesson plans. Student provides own instrument. Although I have provided instruments in certain situations.

*** Specialties ***
Rock, Reggae,Blues, and Fingerstyle.
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Reviews
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ChristineM2 May 4, 2012
· ·
Randal is a great instructor. He's passionate about music and helping students to learn. He is very good about breaking things down to the basics to facilitate learning for students of all ages.
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DuncanB January 21, 2012
· ·
Anya's lessons

Anya is progressing quite well and really enjoying her lessons!
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KaliL March 21, 2011
· ·
Very likeable & knowledgeable!

Randy has been a great teacher for my 6-yr-old daughter. She is really shy & he was great with her. Friendly. Tailored the lessons to her level!
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Randal K.

Randal K.

Mundelein, IL 60060
(5)
starting at
$29 / 30-min

About Michelle Kei I.

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Arlington Heights, IL

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About Michelle Kei
Michelle Kei I., a soprano of Japanese and American heritage, "uses her strong dramatic soprano to slice through the orchestra" in a varied repertoire that encompasses Verismo to Broadway. Possessing a captivating stage presence and praised as "superb," "gifted," and a "constant breakaway from the rest of the vocal pack," she has entertained audiences on stages around the world.

Those are the first two sentences of my professional biography. I thought I'd use them to get the ball rolling.

Ever since I can remember, I've always been a performer. I come from a very musical family. I was always singing! I sang at home, in church, in show-choir and musicals at school - basically anywhere I could find an audience!

When I decided to go to college to study music, I chose the prestigious School of Music at Indiana University. I wanted to
sing Broadway, but my father encouraged me to study classical singing first, so I'd have the foundations for a bulletproof technique that could endure a long and demanding career. I'm so glad that he did!

Who would have thought that I would learn to LOVE opera?!? It had everything that Broadway did, and so much more! Plus, I learned to fill a theater with the sound of my voice and soar over the orchestra WITHOUT A MICROPHONE!!!

Would you like to learn how to do that? I can show you how.

Let me help you find your REAL VOICE!!!

What you can expect from me:

- I will provide a supportive and effective work environment.

- I will make recommendations on repertoire based upon your goals

- I will provide you with an individualized regimen of study based upon your strengths and development, not a standardized format of study.

What I expect from you:

- Learn the musical selections we choose. Your lesson time should be used for improving your technique, not learning your music.

- Leave your outside life at the door. It will be waiting for you when you leave.

- Enjoy the process. Experiment. If it doesn't work, try something else. Take constructive criticism as an opportunity for improvement, not as a personal attack.

- Commit yourself fully! Be engaged. The benefit you receive is equal to the work you put into the process.
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Reviews
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Rob & Amanda February 28, 2018
· Classical Voice · In studio
Our daughter Katie has been under the tutelage of Michelle and Robert for the past nine months. During this time, Katie’s vocal performance level has far exceeded anything we expected. Michelle and Robert have transformed Katie into a stage-ready performer. In doing so, they also prepared us for the arduous tasks of collegiate school selection, entrance requirements, specific audition techniques and audition music selection and preparation. Michelle and Robert also gave us general counseling on what to expect from music schools and
their staff. I felt this was as important as the vocal coaching as my wife and I had no previous experience with music education. We are extremely fortunate and eternally grateful for what Michelle and Robert have done for our daughter’s life. If you’re looking for the complete package in vocal performance coaching, you’ve found them!!!
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Tammie T. February 6, 2018
· Musical Theater · In studio
My daughter has been taking lessons for nearly two months now with Michelle and Robert. She's a high school freshman in choir and theater.

Their training program is top notch. They continue to motivate my daughter with positive reinforcement, helping her with upcoming auditions, and challenging her with song selections to expand her range and strengthen her vocals. We're in it for the long haul, but have already seen a difference in her confidence, vocal strength and range. My daughter is excited every week to go to lessons and loves her teachers.
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Harold P. January 26, 2018
· Singing · In studio
What I thought would be challenging, turned out to be very pleasant and rewarding!
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Michelle Kei I.

Michelle Kei I.

Arlington Heights, IL 60005
(42)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

About Annarita T.

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Des Plaines, IL
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About Annarita
My name is Annarita and I am a violinist from Des Plaines, Illinois. I began playing at the age of seven, and by the time I was in high school I realized I wanted to make playing and teaching violin my career.

In 2013, I graduated with my Bachelor's Degree in music from Loyola University Chicago. During my college career I had the opportunity to spend a semester in Vienna, Austria to expand my knowledge of the classical music world.

In 2010, I began playing with the Fox Valley Orchestra - an ensemble of which I am still a part and consider my second home. I also perform regularly with the Kankakee Valley Symphony Orchestra, Stargate Productions, as well as the string orchestra at Northeastern Illinois University. In 2015 I had the opportunity to perform with Rod Stewart...one of my favorite memories!

Besides my passion for perf
orming, I also very much love teaching. I worked with The People's Music School and with the Chicago Metamorphosis Orchestra Project in Chicago as a violin teacher and ensemble coach. I also teach a wide range of private students.

*** Lesson Details ***
1. I set goals with my students and give them the tools they need in order to reach them.
-I focus a lot on note reading, music theory, practice
techniques, and bodily awareness to ensure each student
understands every aspect of their instrument and music
2. I explain how the assigned studies will help improve students' overall ability to play the violin
-I'm not a "spoon-feeder" - I teach my students how to
teach themselves and think independently!
3. I keep my lessons at an appropriate difficulty for each student.
4. Most importantly, I teach students how to practice efficiently and with patience. Improvement does not happen overnight; but with a little focus and patience, it will come a lot sooner than you think!

*** Travel Equipment ***
Students must have an instrument, music stand, assigned music, and a metronome if necessary.
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Reviews
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Kelly Libel March 4, 2017
· Violin · In home
She has been teaching my daughter for 3 years, starting around age 5 1/2-6. She is patient and firm, encourages her to work hard, and loves and praises her when she succeeds. She takes her craft seriously, and it shows. She is phenomenal!
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MAXYMILIAN B. January 21, 2016
· Violin · In home
Annarita is a great teacher!
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Meryem September 2, 2015
· Violin · In home
My daughter really enjoys learning with her.She improved a lot .
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Annarita T.

Annarita T.

Des Plaines, IL 60018
(4)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Christopher J.

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DeKalb, IL
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About Christopher
Hello All! My name is Christopher and I am excited to begin working with you all. I began teaching voice in 2012 as a student in Bowling Green, OH. I enjoying watching students progress and to help the find their own voice! I am fun, energetic, caring and dedicated. I received my Bachelor of Music degree in Voice Performance in 2013 from Bowling Green State University. I have a Graduate Performers Certificate in performance from Northern Illinois University where I am currently completing my Masters of Music in performance.
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Reviews
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Greg December 11, 2017
· Vocal Training · In studio
easy going, helpful and put me at ease. Looking forward to taking more lessons!
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Jamie F. October 19, 2016
· Singing · In studio
Christopher was wonderful! I had a great first lesson.
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Alex September 2, 2016
· Opera Voice · In studio
Amazing job all around! He used many visuals and examples to help me figure out how to properly use my voice and get it resonating to its fullest potential. Great personality and fantastic teaching skills!
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Christopher J.

Christopher J.

DeKalb, IL 60115
(4)
starting at
$25 / 30-min
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About Matt M.

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Mokena, IL

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About Matt
Hi! My name is Matt M. and I am the owner and founder of Black & White Music Services, Inc., a professional music education and production company.
I began teaching at a fairly early age and moved to teaching privately over 9 years ago. I have a deep passion for music and the guitar and do my best to instill that same passion in new and experienced players alike. Throughout my playing career I have participated in numerous ensembles including jazz bands, classical groups and quartets, as well as solo performance groups. I am extremely thorough when it comes to my teaching style. I make sure the student has a clear understanding of not only the how but also the why while keeping my curriculum fun and interesting. Every student is different and I do my best to gain an understanding of the individual and build a lesson plan best suited for
that individual.
If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to contact me!
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Reviews
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Mia G. September 6, 2017
· Guitar · In studio
Matt was very knowledgeable and patient with Mia, she is a beginner and Matt went through all the parts of the guitar and helped her tune her new guitar and showed her how to read notes. She is very excited to go to her next lesson. Thanks Matt.
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Jesus S. February 2, 2016
· Acoustic Guitar · In home
Very nice and outgoing instructor. My son is very excited with what he learned on his first guitar lesson.
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Brandon C. January 4, 2016
· Guitar · In home
My 18 year son had his first lesson and he was so excited to realize he will soon be able to play. He actually went home and started practicing!
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Matt M.

Matt M.

Mokena, IL 60448
(4)
starting at
$22 / 30-min

About john M.

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Broadview, IL

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About john
I enjoy sharing my love and passion for music with others! I have instructed privately for over 27 years. I have instructed in music store studios, my home studio, and in-home lessons. I have instructed in public, private and charter school systems; class room and privately. Besides performing, instruction (passing it on) is my passion.
I have been performing professionally for over 35 years. I have toured nationally and internationally. I have been a full time self employed musician since 1987.
...
Reviews
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Brian Lenart February 22, 2016
· Drum · In studio
John is fantastic teacher and very knowledgeable about music. He has a great rapport with his students. My daughter is very enthusiastic about her drum lessons with John every week and always looks forward to it. I would highly recommend John to anyone interested in music lessons.
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Michael D. July 7, 2015
· Drum · In home
Not only is John an off-the-charts professional drummer, he's a fantastic human being as well! He loves music and it comes through in the lessons! In 35 years of playing and hanging around wannabees, John is the genuine musician! Anyone really wanting to learn correctly needs John. I recommend him 100%.
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john M.

john M.

Broadview, IL 60155
(2)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Adrianne B.

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Des Plaines, IL

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About Adrianne
Adrianne has been teaching private lessons since 2011 and is currently available to teach lessons at her studio, in Chicago and Des Plaines. Students' accomplishments include leading roles at high schools and colleges in the northwest suburbs as well as many successful performances and awards at recitals and competitions.

Voice students will gain an understanding for proper use of breath, projection, ease, tone quality, diction, and confidence in solo singing. Piano students will focus on proper technique, posture, phrasing, legato, sight-reading, and performance.

Adrianne's teaching style is patient, encouraging, and enthusiastic.

Adrianne received her training at The Boston Conservatory, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Music. She completed her master's at Roosevelt University, College of the Performing Arts. She is know
n for her warm and sweet voice. Audiences have seen her sing in Illinois, Mississippi, Massachusetts, Florida, and Italy. She has performed over twenty roles with the likes of Opera Naples, Natchez Festival of Music, Sugar Creek Opera, Chicago Opera Theater, and Lyric Opera of Chicago. She has been featured many times as a soloist in Handel’s Messiah with Harper College. Though she has predominantly performed in opera, she is at home in a variety of styles, and teaches voice lessons in Des Plaines, Glen Ellyn, and Chicago. Ms. Blanks is a Chicago native, and the weekly soloist for Second Church in Evanston.
...
Reviews
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Christopher March 8, 2017
· Piano · In studio
Adrienne is great with my two sons!
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Sophia February 22, 2017
· Singing · In studio
Ms. Adrianne is patient, confident, qualified music 🎶 teacher. I have been taking singing 🎤 lessons for five years with her and Ms. Adrianne still makes me enthusiastic to practice and enjoy wanting to come to Lessons.
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Rebecca November 2, 2016
· Piano · In studio
She is very good with kids. My daughter loves her. So we'll continue with her on piano lesson.
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Adrianne B.

Adrianne B.

Des Plaines, IL 60016
(9)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Amelia H.

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DeKalb, IL

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About Amelia
I am passionate about music and dedicated to giving my students quality lessons!

I studied Vocal Performance and Choral Music at Northern Illinois University ('18), I am active in the DeKalb community as a primary cantor for the Newman Catholic Student Center. I am also a freelance performing artist, writing songs on the piano, playing various venues across the Chicagoland area.
...
Reviews
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James E. January 19, 2018
· Voice Acting · In studio
Throughout each lesson, I learned something new about myself. She was very patient, informative, and always had good things to say about you and your acting/voice skills. She helped awaken my creative theatre mind again and I’m thankful for that. I highly recommend taking her if you want a good experience in learning or enhancing your acting/voice skills!
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Jennifer R. November 21, 2017
· Audition Prep · In studio
My daughter, Jadelynn took lessons with Amelia to help her get ready for an audition with AMDA. Amelia was professional and extremely helpful. Jadelynn was very confidant after the prep classes and felt that her audition went very well. So it did, we just got the call that she was accepted and awarded two scholarships.
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Amelia H.

Amelia H.

DeKalb, IL 60115
(2)
starting at
$25 / 30-min

About Doss K.

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Belvidere, IL
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About Doss
I am a metal guitar master. I taught myself at 10 yrs old. I have played in punk, rock, metal and country bands. If you want to learn the guitar and have fun while playing... Then I can help you. My lesson plans go from easy to extreme. All depends on your progression. You'll also learn the music and songs YOU want to play..
...
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Doss K.

Doss K.

Belvidere, IL 61008
starting at
$34 / 30-min

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