David Lester

David L.

New York, NY

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David delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 6+

Teaching since:
September 2006

Hello! I am brand new to New York City, having just moved here from Maryland to attend Manhattan School of Music in the fall for a Master's in double bass performance. My 13 years of teaching back home in Frederick, MD brought me so many wonderful connections and relationships that I'm immensely grateful for. I'm excited to start a new chapter in my teaching career in my new home!

I began my musical journey on the drums, which quickly led me to the guitar and bass guitar as well, all three of which I studied with Matt Thompson in Frederick, MD. In high school, I ended up gravitating towards the bass as my primary instrument, and a growing interest in jazz caused me to add the upright bass to my collection of instruments. Little did I know that this would become an even bigger obsession of mine! Once I started lessons on the upright bass, originally with the intention of only playing jazz, I soon fell in love with classical bass playing, and this became my primary focus during college. My major teachers have included Lynn Fleming, Jeff Weisner of the National Symphony Orchestra, and Laura Ruas of the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra. In the fall of 2019, at Manhattan School of Music, I will join the bass studio of Jeremy McCoy of the Metropolitan Opera orchestra.

I perform as a multi-faceted bassist, in a mixture of genres and ensembles, enjoying the variety and breadth of musical opportunities I find myself in. I have experience playing in orchestras, jazz ensembles, rock, funk, and blues bands, and am active as a composer and conductor as well.

My formal education culminated in a B.A. in Music History & Literature from Hood College, where I graduated in 2010 magna cum laude and with departmental honors. At Hood, I received the Excellence in Music prize each semester. I have been gigging as a professional bassist since high school, in a multitude of jazz, rock, and classical ensembles.
I have been teaching private lessons since the fall of 2006, and have been fortunate to gain experience with all age groups and skill levels. I teach to each student’s style of learning and thinking, and approach my job from a place of complete respect for the students. The most fundamental quality of my teaching style is my desire to make everything I teach relevant and personal for the students, so that they truly connect to what is being taught, rather than simply learning facts and assimilating information.

As a multi-instrumentalist, I'm able to give my students a real context for their instrument by accompanying them. My students learn how to make music with others, and how to work in an ensemble. I love to push my students to the edge of their ability, both technically and creatively.
I love music with all my heart, and there is little else more rewarding than imparting this joy and passion to students.

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Private Teacher
Nov 2006 - Present
Duet With Music


Sep 2006 - May 2010
Hood College

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