Russell Holzman

Russell H.

Bronx, NY
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Lesson Details

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Russell teaches



Russell delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 3+ and special needs

Teaching since:
September 2011

As an NYC native, I have been teaching drum lessons for almost 7 years now. Born in lower Manhattan, I attended Manhattan East Middle School for Music & Arts, as well as Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School for Music & Art and the Performing Arts. In 2012, I received a scholarship to attend New England Conservatory of Music where I had the opportunity to study privately with master musicians such as John McNeil, Bob Moses, Miguel Zenon, Jerry Bergonzi and a lengthy apprenticeship with drum legend Billy Hart. In 2014 I received a full scholarship to attend the Banff International Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music in Canada. I was fortunate enough to be able to work closely there with first- rate artists such as Vijay Iyer, Steve Coleman, Jeff “Tain” Watts, Reggie Workman and more. I have been a private drum lesson instructor since high school, and have taught dozens of students of all ages, skill levels, and in all styles of music. In addition to private lessons, I have taught workshops and masterclasses in high schools and community centers throughout my years at New England Conservatory. I have also taught at the Outreach Summer Music Workshop in Austria for 2 years, where I instructed and coached ensembles of international students. Music is a powerful thing, and the ability to teach it is a great joy and learning experience.

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Private Drum Lesson Instructor
Sep 2010 - Present
NYC Private Drum Lessons

• Has taught dozens of students of all ages and skill levels from ages 6 to 60.
• Lessons include all styles of jazz, rock, funk, latin, hip hop, pop as well as technique, reading, and general musicianship.
• Maintains complete responsibility for the organization, teaching and techniques of each lesson. Evaluates each student’s progress and adjusts strategies accordingly.

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Workshop and Masterclass Coach/TA
Sep 2014 - May 2016
New England Conservatory

• Taught workshops and masterclasses in a number of high schools and community centers all over Massachusetts with the 2015 Jazz Honors Ensemble.
• Performed in masterclasses led by Fred Hersch, Dave Holland, Jason Moran, Vijay Iyer, Aaron Goldberg, and Donny McCaslin.
• Was a TA for Jerry Leake’s World Rhythms Class. Worked closely with students on world music, rhythmic independence, and traditional techniques.

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Ensemble Coach & Private Lesson TA
Jul 2012 - Aug 2013
Outreach Music Workshop - Schwaz, Austria

• Instructed and coached ensembles of international students in Jazz, Rock, Fusion, and other repertoire.
• Had the opportunity teach private drum lessons to students despite a language barrier.


Jazz Performance - Drums
Sep 2012 - May 2016
New England Conservatory
Sep 2008 - Jun 2012
Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School for Music and Art & The Performing Arts


Fluent / Native Proficiency


Drummer for NEC Jazz Honors Ensemble
Oct 2014
New England Conservatory
TD Bank Full Scholarship
Feb 2014
Banff International Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music
Litchfield Jazz Camp Scholarship
Jul 2012
Litchfield Jazz Camp
Charles Mingus Competition Performer and Finalist
May 2012
Manhattan School of Music - Charles Mingus Competition
Fred Klein Jazz Award
May 2012
LaGuardia High School
NEC Merit Scholarship
Feb 2012
New England Conservatory
Grammy Jazz Ensemble Finalist
Feb 2012
Grammy Camp - Jazz Session

Photos & Videos

Photo by Russell H.
Playing the Spring 2016 Marc Jacobs Show at the world famous Zeigfeld Theatre in New York City

Soundchecking at the POP Montreal Festival at the Rialto Theatre in Canada

About to Soundcheck onstage at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City

Mid-set at the FIREFLY Music Festival 2016

Photo by Russell H.
Photo by Russell H.

Photo by Russell H.
Photo by Russell H.

5 Reviews

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Julie Jun 11, 2017
Drum · In studio

Cool kit, experienced drummer

Ana E. May 31, 2017
Drum · In studio

Get patient and eager to teach!

Graciela Mar 2, 2017
Drum · In home

Russell is a great teacher. He is able to clearly write out the grooves or rudimentary exercises on music paper and have you practice them in creative ways. Russell can play any drum style (rock, jazz, blues, progressive etc) and has a calm and confident demeanor. I would hire him again.... and do.

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Christa Feb 18, 2017
Drum · In studio

As my first drum teacher, I felt I learned a lot. I really liked his approach to teaching in that is not based on written music but rather by ear. Highly recommend.

Jose Feb 18, 2017
Drum · In home

Very dedicated and passionate teacher. He wants to make sure you get the most out of you lesson. Russell was always reliable and really cared about my progress on the drums.

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