Music is my passion. I love film and acting but music is where my heart truly lies. I am a new graduate from Berklee College of Music in Boston, but my love of music started long before my college education.
I began piano lessons very young but gave that up to pursue guitar. I've also been writing from an early age, anything from lyrics to poems to short stories to screenplays. My poetry was published many times in a US wide book featuring the art of children between 6 and 12 years of age. My father, an artist (mainly painter), encouraged me to pursue my artistic passions and by the age of 12 I was writing some of my first songs on guitar. I took voice lessons over the years as well as guitar lessons and even played clarinet in my high school band. I spent a year in Puerto Rico in my junior year of high school where I attended an arts school and was a student at the Conservatorio de Musica de Puerto Rico. There I studied music theory, voice, and international songwriting. I moved back to New Jersey for my senior year of high school where I was accepted into an all arts school. I studied in a choir but also continued my studies in music theory and voice. I began learning Italian Arias and other select Arias of different languages.
After high school, I was accepted to Berklee College of Music. My first focus was in Music Therapy. I spent a very big part of my life working with children in either art camp settings, music lesson settings, or schools and thought my passion was in the area of therapy. After a year and a half of studying Music Therapy at Berklee, I had a change of heart and realized that I wanted to go to Berklee and was accepted to Berklee for my songwriting. I quickly changed majors and continued my time at Berklee in the songwriting department where I was pushed to my absolute limits lyrically, musically, and harmonically.
I am currently planning my last semester at Berklee after graduation to attend internships and continue to broaden my knowledge of music. Afterwards, I will be attending the New York Film Academy which I have been accepted to. I want to pursue the art of film as well, learning to act and relating that to stage performances and confidence building - which I believe are so important for young kids and young adults.
I have a great deal of experience but I am also still learning. I think it is very important as a teacher to always be learning, even through our students. I look forward to sharing that with more students in the future.
*** Lesson Details ***
Our lessons will be filled with a lot of fun, a lot of improvisation, a building of confidence, a building of goals and skills, and of course a willing to continue to learn. I am a very laid back teacher; however, I want the student to feel a sense of joy and a want to practice and continue to learn during and after each lesson. When teaching songwriting, I find it very important for the student (no matter the age) to be writing as often as possible. I want the student to do such things as 'object writes' where they think of an object and write about how our senses create that object. For instance, how it smells, how it tastes, how it looks, how it feels, etc. A rock that we find on the ground could appear jagged, be an unfamiliar shape, seemingly is solid. When we lift it up, it could crumble into a grainy, dry sand in our large, over-confident hands. Certainly a stretch, but these images that we create in our writing are so important in songwriting. They allow the audience to understand our point of view, and to maybe have a sense of familiarity in the song.
The most important tool I can give to any student is building confidence. I personally grew up lacking confidence and it was such a hard obstacle to overcome for me. I want the student to be proud of their work, to experiment and not be afraid of failure, and to be honest. When acting out a scene, I want them to learn how to be true to a character and true to themselves. I want them to be able to stand on stage and give their all in a performance. This is certainly about the student. We will set up goals for certain amounts of time. After three months I'd love to have a song recorded and a few other songs in the works, a beginning use of theory and new chord structures to work with, new progressions, and a new found confidence.
*** Travel Equipment ***
Proper instrument required.
*** Specialties ***
Mainly for songwriting, I grew up on folk music and have an appreciation for the singer/songwriters of the 60s/70s. When working with students, I like to help by preparing them to do thing like write at least ten minutes a day, do object writing (finding certain objects and writing about how those objects look, feel, smell, etc.), and really focus on honest storytelling. For songwriting in general, it is important to be honest with yourself and your audience. I also encourage the students to use modal music and really learn about progressions and how chords relate to words, or how rhythms relate to what is trying to be said.
Assistant teacher of theater arts and design, theater camp