Jeff is a seasoned instructor in guitar, songwriting, music performance and music business. He also offers lessons in public speaking, voice-over performance and ukulele. He welcomes students of all ages and experience and has successfully and happily taught beginners to pro-level musicians and recording artists. Jeff is pleased to announce that he is currently accepting Takelessons online students via Skype.
Jeff can teach guitar and songwriting in all styles and is an adept acoustic and electric guitarist. His knowledge of chords is extensive and his acoustic fingerpicking skills are formidable. Jeff structures all lessons around the individual goals and playing level of his students. Jeff's students tend to study with him for quite some time, as his wealth of knowledge, diversity of instruction and patience are extraordinary
. Jeff prides himself on customizing every student's lessons based on their particular preferences, goals and skill level. "It's a very personalized kind of instruction, as I never take a cookie-cutter approach to teaching…". Jeff's 3 promises to all students is to give them personalized lessons, be attentive to their needs and goals. and to make them feel like every lesson is worth their investment of time and money. As long as students practice regularly, they can expect to dramatically increase their clarity of playing, their chord "inventory", their musical ear and awareness and play the songs they've always wanted to learn.
After honing his craft as a songwriter and performer, Jeff created and taught music classes at colleges, universities, and music schools throughout the country for many years, including UCLA Extension, Santa Monica College, Pasadena City College and The Harrison School Of Music. Jeff is currently teaching ukulele classes and songwriting classes at Tacoma Community College and Pierce College, both in Washington state.
When asked to summarize his views on teaching and music: "Teaching and playing music always puts a smile on my face; especially when I see that the student is having fun, learning what they want to learn and feeling the passion about music that motivated me to pursue my own musical career".
As a working singer/songwriter/guitarist, Jeff is known for his memorable melodies, intelligently crafted lyrics and heartfelt vocals. His compositions have earned him over 50 awards from various national and international songwriting contests and he's a former staff songwriter for the long-standing New York City-based publisher, Bourne Music. He has also won best music video awards at 3 international film festivals.
Some of the artists that Jeff has been compared to as a guitarist and vocalist include Keb' Mo', James Taylor, Kenny Loggins, Ry Cooder, John Mayer, Bill Withers, Jim Croce, and Don Henley.
Jeff is a NJ native, but lived and performed in Los Angeles for many years, where he worked in the studio or shared the stage with well-known artists such as Dave Koz, Norman Brown, John Daversa, Hiroshima, Little Richard and N'Dea Davenport.
Jeff catalog of over 450 songs and compositions spans virtually every genre, but many of his tunes are amalgams of pop, blues, jazz, R&B, country and rock. Quite a number of Jeff's songs have appeared in film and TV. One that Jeff is particularly proud of, is the dynamic pop ballad, "Journey Of The Heart" (co-written by Jeanne Smith), which was licensed by the N.C.A.A. (National Collegiate Athletic Association), who deemed it "the official anthem" of their NCAA Hall Of Champions facility in Indianapolis.
Jeff has commercially released 4 CD's of his original material: The most recent of these is his 2013 release, "Blujanova" (a merging of blues, jazz and bossa nova), which was praised by platinum selling and Grammy-nominated jazz star, Dave Koz: "Jeff's voice is so clean and pure...the production is lovely...warm and inviting...I love the interesting and surprising takes on some classics too, especially 'I Feel Good'…that brought a smile to my face!". The other CD's stretch into other genres. "Truthteller" (bluesy pop/rock and singer/songwriter material) "Me, Myself, and I" (acoustic) and "The Spin" (pop, rock, and country-tinged singer/songwriter material). All of Jeff's albums are on his label, Relevant Records. The late great John Braheny, author of the best-selling "The Craft And Business Of Songwriting (Writer's Digest Books), gave high praise to Jeff's CD, "The Spin", calling it "honest, crafty, melodic and the songs are all exceptional". Patch called Jeff "a consummate songwriter".
*** Lesson Details *** At the first lesson, I will ask you to tell me what songs you want to play and artists you want to play like and I will set the table for that by providing the chords you'll need, chord and scales and exercises to enable you to play them and guidelines and tricks on how to make it happen as quickly as possible. I know a wide variety of songs in all styles and styles, including current hit songs as well as pop, rock, blues, jazz, country songs. if you have a song or artist that I don't know already, I will learn it (often on the spot) and if not right then, at the next lesson. I have taught my students to play songs by artists as varied as Taylor Swift, U2, Jason Mraz, Adele, Eric Clapton, Django Reinhardt, Doc Watson. And that's just naming a few.
I always make it clear to my students at the first lesson: "There is no such thing as a stupid question". I want you to feel comfortable to stop me at any time to clarify what I am teaching you, ESPECIALLY if it is too difficult or vague. I pride myself on always being organized for your lesson and making sure that you grasp whatever it is I am teaching you. The goal is to get you to be able to play what you want as quickly as possible. This will take practice and dedication on your part, but I will do everything in my power to help you get there.
I never force anything on any of my students. but I feel it would be beneficial for you to learn to read music OR read tablature and chord diagrams. You tell me which one and we'll go in that direction. If you'd like to read music, then we can decide on a book for you. I have used Hal Leonard instructional books (with CD's! this way you can play with a backing track and get a sense of rhythm, which is very important), but I'm open to other method books you might have or like.
After 3 to 6 months, you will feel you are significantly more skilled on the guitar than you were before we started lessons. You will know more chords (and move from chord to chord), be able to do at least some basic fingerpicking and be able to read some music or tablature.
*** Specialties *** Acoustic fingerstyle guitar (a la James Taylor, John Mayer, Eric Clapton, Keb' Mo', Jason Mraz, John Martyn, Jim Croce, etc.
Blues guitar a la Eric Clapton, B.B. King, Keb' Mo', Jorma Kaukonen, Ry Cooder, etc.
Bossa nova guitar
Songwriting (any aspect and any level; musically, lyrically, structurally, etc.)
the songs of Taylor Swift---quite a few of my younger students want to play her material, so I have about 15 songs ready to teach you and always learning more (by popular demand)
Adapting songs that are keyboard-based and creating arrangements of them for acoustic guitar. Examples include songs by Adele, songs by Elton John, Irina Menzel's huge hit song from "Frozen", John Legend's "All Of Me", Coldplay's "Viva La Vida", etc.
Recording on Garageband. I became so skilled with Garageband that I was asked to give seminars at Apple Store locations, showcasing my recordings and how to use the program.
My name is David, and I am a music teacher of many different subjects. These include guitar, piano, bass, ukulele, recording, music theory, production, composition and film music composition.
All styles, and all ages. Classical, Rock, Alternative, Slide Guitar, Blues, Jazz, and more!
I have a Masters Degree in music from The University of Melbourne in Australia, as well as having the distinction of a Bachelors Degree in Music from Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle.
Many times a student will come to me after having been with another teacher for some time,.. they express to me that the other instructor did not teach them what they wanted to learn, nor did they achieve the result that they wanted.
The instructor perhaps had them mired in endless exercises and studies that were great
to get you READY to play music, but perhaps was not music in and of itself.
I find that when I get right down to the nitty gritty of playing, and show my students a song they love and know, and get them playing guitar by the end of the session that they are usually thrilled and excited.
In the end it makes them work harder and practice long because THEY ARE PLAYING MUSIC ON THE GUITAR!!!
Certainly exercises are of paramount importance, but when you can make that connection with a student and help them to relate to the guitar the exercises are ultimately easier to them, and the experience of playing guitar an enjoyable and less alienating task.
Grab your guitar and start today!! Let's get you playing TODAY!!!!
“I've been working with David for a couple of months, and it has been a great experience. I'm new to bass, with a little guitar experience--he quickly sized up what I knew and had me working on exercises and a great bass line that got me playing right away. He has been very flexible and accommodating of my schedule needs, and he gives plenty of positive and constructive feedback. I've been working in education for nearly 30 years, and I know a great teacher when I see one. David fits the bill, and I'm lucky to be working with him.”
Rudy F., Principal Middle School
“My son had been taking lessons for seven years and was losing interest. David's passion for music, knowledge of music theory, ability to read the student and know the best way to approach the lessons is exactly what my son needed. Along with his background in a wide variety of genres….classical, rock, jazz, etc. has made learning more exciting, resulting in a renewed interest.”
Tammy S., University Place
“David is an outstanding instructor! My son is 5 years old and loves him. My son is occasionally a difficult child with his own special quirks, but David is so patient and observant and tailors the lessons as we go along week to week to keep my son engaged, encouraged and learning. I also have two younger children who must tag along to the lesson and even they are excited during the lessons and are already asking when they start their lessons! We will be starting at least one more child's lessons with him during this coming school year! He is great!”
Cherise H., Parkland
“Loving the relaxed atmosphere with David. Bargain prices for the one on one experience with such an awesome, educated and talented musician.”
Raven R., Tacoma
“David is an amazing talent and provides me with much needed inspiration. In little over a year, I have learned a tremendous amount about nearly all styles of guitar, classical and lead guitar in particular. It's very helpful to have an awesome instructor who is extremely knowledgeable and very patient. His lesson plans are geared towards what I want to learn and the lessons that we work on cover all the techniques that are necessary to take my skills to the next level. He makes every lesson fun and he works with me until I am comfortable to move on.”
Larry L., Gig Harbor
“David tailors each lesson dynamically to my own progression which has been great. Gauges progression and gives you things to work on before the next lesson. Highly recommend him!”
Kory J., Tacoma
"David has been our son's guitar instructor for the better part of a year. During that time we've appreciated his patient encouragement, especially during the early weeks of instruction. His ability to individually tailor his teaching to his students , incorporating their musical interests has helped our son progress quickly and helped keep him motivated. he really is a wonderful teacher."
Amy L., Tacoma
"Where do I begin? I started with a guitar and a couple of chords...(A lot of desire but basically an empty canvas)." 'This was my life for a number of years until I met David.
Now I must first admit, I am ADD so teaching me and captivating my attention is no easy task...David not only broke through that barrier but opened the door to world of music I had aways felt and now suddenly I could touch.
If you posses the desire to learn and the drive to work...the sky is the limit."
Wes H. City of Destiny Tacoma, WA
"I am very happy with my decision to take lessons with David. In just 2 months I've gone from strumming some chords to understanding picking patterns, learning how to put together an entire song, and expanding my techniques. I am very surprised at how much technical skill I have been able to pick up in such a short period of time"
Marianne B., Tacoma
"I'm 46 years old and my only known talent is for overcomplicating things. I've always admired a good guitar player and wanted to learn to play myself--who doesn't?--but felt I didn't have the talent or just "couldn't do it." Then I found David and he said, 'Oh yes you can. Commit to 4 lessons up front and you'll see that you can.' I took the leap and sure enough, he had me playing blues riffs in less than one month. All I had to do was listen and do as he instructed me to and it all comes very naturally. There's no stress, just a whole lot of fun! If you're like me and you thought you couldn't play guitar, start with David and just have some fun with it. It's simple. You won't want to put the guitar down again!"
Dan D., Tacoma
I had been playing guitar for about 5 years and had only been self taught. I found myself completely stuck playing the same chords and not able to play riffs or solos at all. In my first lesson I was playing the blues with slides and hammer ons and pull offs. In a couple of lessons he had me soloing in different keys and playing riffs from guitar gods! He was able to teach me in a couple lessons what took me years trying to teach myself! He makes lessons so much fun because not only are you learning the music theory but he relates it to popular songs that you can practice along with. He also has so much knowledge in other aspects as well. He can teach you about music gear and amps or help you compose your own music. He caters to your style and taste in music and can teach you ANYTHING!
I love guitar period, but it's overtly frustrating when you have no idea where to start, or how to play at all. I went through multiple guitar instructors trying to learn how to play and each of them weren't very specific, or didn't hone in on any one thing at a time so you could really start to get it down and process it. Then we happened to find David, and he was really what we were looking for. I started picking up chords like no other, It helped, and is helping tremendously. He goes into depth about the song,letting you comprehend it a little more, and ultimately learning it quicker and better.
Skye R., Tacoma WA
I have had 4 different Blues guitar Teacher in the last 6 months, getting nowhere as far as really playing some Blues until I ran across David. The other teachers just wanted me to learn the pentatonic scales, Major and Minor. That took a lot of boring weeks and I am sure I will need to know those scales but I just wanted someone to show / teach me Blues chords, related to Blues songs and the timing to the chord changes so I could start playing some kind of Blues. I have had 6 one hour lessons so far with David and I am playing the Blues. The first 4 hours Dave showed me a E, A, B7 blues chord progression with some step up and step down notes. The 2nd 2 hours Dave showed me a A, D9, A7,E9 Blues chords and Blues timing with slides.
I take one hour Lessons every Thursday and in 6 hours I am playing the Blues. I picked up the guitar about 6 months ago, started teaching myself and not really getting anywhere. I am not a fast learner, about average in learning something new. Now I set a home Learning my guitar and polishing the Blues songs that David has taught me, starting to get FUN.
Les F. Tacoma, Wa.
Working with David has made me focus on areas of my chops that needed fine tuning. He provides the basic exercises and tools that, when practiced enough in a zen-like manner, clarifies your understanding of movement on the fret board, and makes you sound a bit more professional. Questions regarding speed, theory, notation, composition, and even string size, are ready for answer with David, which is what keeps me working with him. From begining, to intermediate, to professional levels, if you're looking to improve your chops, Dave's your guy.
Frank L., Seattle WA
I had tried many different instructors and had become very frustrated with trying to learn guitar. Within one lesson David had me playing ACDC and RUSH! David just has a way of explaining things so that they make sense and doesn't waste any time getting right down to the nuts and bolts of guitar. A lot of other instructors spend alot of time getting you 'ready' to play guitar, but with David we got down to playing guitar right away!
Stevie J., Olympia WA
“I started receiving lessons from David a few years ago, to improve my guitar abilities. I always used to tell people, "I've been playing guitar since the Eighties, though you would never know it." At the time I started, I knew some Metal riffs, three-chord Punk Rock progressions, and simple 12-bar blues. Though I took two guitar classes and first-year Music Theory in college in the early Nineties, the only scale I could say I knew was "blues pentatonic," emphasis on the quotation marks.
My goal was to relearn Modes/Scales, and brush up on theory, so that I could write more complex material. David taught me that, and so much more. Over these few years, I've learned Progressive Rock, Fusion/Jazz, and even some Country styles, as well as a great deal more about Metal and, yes, even Punk from David. I can play leads and solos with much more proficiency, in timing with the rhythm, and more tonally correct, than I ever could before. He has also helped me read music better, construct more professional-sounding compositions, and has started me on my own path to produce my own recordings, from recommending and using recording software, to capturing dynamics with mic placement, to mixing the rough takes to get the most out of the sound.
For a musician of any level or caliber, having an instructor like David is a true asset--for he has the knowledge and skills to take an entry-level musician every step of the way to becoming a professional performer, recorder, mixer, engineer, and producer. The only limit to the lesson's potential is your own level of determination, which David quite expertly helps you to improve with every session. Even if your goal is to simply learn to play one song on one instrument--and David teaches MANY instruments--he will have you playing that song like the musician who wrote it before you realize it--as long as you stick with your practice between lessons. That part's up to you!”
Marc D., Apple Valley CA
*** Studio Equipment *** Mac Logic Presonus invariable guitars, amps, keyboards, and other stuff. Tama drumset, Full Mic's. University trained mind and honed skills. Who cares about the software.
*** Specialties *** Generally come from conservatory/ classical background so utilize classical methods of teaching with a contemporary application to suit modern day application
I actually feel I got somewhere on the first lesson. He starts by teaching a song. Love it.
April 26, 2019
Awesome lesson very knowledgeable and fun to be around
February 4, 2019
I have been taking guitar lessons with David for a year and a half. It has been a blast to learn guitar from him. Whenever possible, he likes to structure his lessons so that you're playing music and it doesn't feel like you're doing drills, but when I have to work on something specific he gives me great drills to work on.
I've learned everything from Bach to AC/DC, from The Beatles to Rush. David encourages me that I'm improving, but also pushes me to continue to improve.
I am learning a lot under his tutelage, and I am going to keep learning as much as I can.
I started singing professionally at the age of fourteen. I have had leading roles in semi-professional theatre productions since I was seventeen. I have also been assistant director, musical director, choreographer, costumer and writer for many productions from West Side Story to My Fair Lady to Camelot. In the theatre I have worked with and trained children and adults of all ages. I have also conducted summer camps that were theatre workshops for children. I was a school teacher at a Charter school for eight years and I taught music and drama to children from Kindergarten to 12th grade. I have been giving voice lessons for more than twenty years. I tailor my programs based on the needs of my students. I am passionate about music and I love being able to share that with other individuals who are passionate about music. I have wor
ked with children and adults who told me "I cannot sing" and have shown them that, once you understand how your voice works, you can do things you never dreamed you could do. I will work hard to help anyone who has the love and determination to sing to improve and become a better singer.
Students I have worked with have won competitions and even been accepted into the AMDA in New York.
*** Lesson Details *** The voice is an instrument and, like any instrument, you have to know all of its parts and how it works in order to get the most out of it. I teach my students how to properly use their voice without damaging their vocal chords. I teach vocal techniques and exercises to help my students become a better singer. My students will learn how to use their diaphragm; how to use dynamics; how to project; how to build up their lung capacity; how to sing in a clear and articulate manner; how to sing various different types of music; how to control their voice; and how to develop their natural ear for music as well as showmanship. My style and technique has been developed over many years of practical experience and learning from instructors and entertainers who work in the entertainment industry. My method of teaching is entirely my own and I have had a lot of success with it. I expect my students to work hard and be dedicated but I try to make the lessons not just instructional but fun.
*** Studio Equipment *** Home-lessons taught in a designated music room, has an electric weighted keyboard and a karaoke machine.
I have recording capabilities that allow me to record my students and blend their voices with the background tracks that we work with. Once a song has been mastered, I record the song and email it to you so you can have it to enjoy and share with family and friends.
*** Specialties *** I teach my students breathing techniques; how to use the diaphragm and relax the vocal chords; how to project; how to properly enunciate; how to perform a song instead of just singing it; showmanship; how to select the music that is right for them. The voice is an instrument and, like any instrument, you have to fully understand it and its different parts in order to get the most out of it.
Music shapes my life and has made me the person I am today. My experience in training in opera, musical theatre, jazz, and pop has expanded my musical skills and knowledge. Not only have I been trained in performance, but I have also studied music history, music theory, conducting, movement training, ballet, Alexander Technique, acting, yoga, stage craft, improvisation, other languages, diction and the International Phonetic Alphabet, voice science and anatomy, and vocal pedagogy. I have completed my Bachelor of Music in Operatic Vocal Performance from the prestigious Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University under the tutelage of the legendary Carol Vaness. I have also studied with acclaimed teachers and coaches around the world including Dr. Kari Ragan and Maestro Dean Williamson.
This year has been w
onderfully packed with performance for Seattle Opera. I just closed out a 78 performance run of CINDERELLA IN SPAIN where I sang the role of CINDERELLA and was even on the poster! I also performed the roles for the Seattle Opera preview performances of GRETEL in HANSEL UND GRETEL, VIOLETTA in LA TRAVIATA, KATYA in KATYA KABANOVA, and QUEEN OF THE NIGHT in MAGIC FLUTE. I made my Seattle Opera debut singing ALITSA and RACCOON in their touring production of "OUR EARTH", as well as performing on the mainstage in many productions. My upcoming performances include singing in the Seattle Opera kick off to the season SUMMERFEST in July; and OLYMPIA in LES CONTES D'HOFFMANN with Pacific Northwest Opera. My other roles include ALKANDRE in PENELOPE with Vespertine Opera in Seattle, WA; FRASQUITA in CARMEN with OperaBend in Bend, Oregon and Pacific Northwest Opera; and SUSANNA in LE NOZZE DI FIGARO with the Seattle Opera Guild. I also made my international debut in December 2014 singing GRETEL in HANSEL UND GRETEL with Opera Mariposa in Vancouver, BC. I have also been the featured soloist as "Christine" in Ten Grand's Phantom of the Opera at Benaroya Hall in Seattle, WA, and many lead roles in both opera and musical theatre: such as Semele (Semele), Marie (La Fille du Regiment), Gretel (Hansel und Gretel), Countess Ceprano and Gilda (Rigoletto), Blondchen (Die Entfuehrung aus dem Serail), Maria (West Side Story), La Fee (Cendrillon), Sarah Brown (Guys and Dolls), Cathy (The Last 5 Years), Rosina (Barber of Seville), and more! I have also been part of jazz ensembles, and won the Battle of the Bands at Indiana University with a rock group! I am proud to have won the Seattle Opera Guild/Opera Plus Young Artist Scholarship Award for the 2015/2016 season, the Encouragement Award in the Metropolitan Opera National Council District Auditions, First Place in the National Classical Singers Competition, the C.M. Gerber Scholarship, Music Dean's Scholarship, Music Faculty Award, First Place at Washington State Solo and Ensemble Competitions, First Place in the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) National Competitions, and many more!
Teaching brings me such joy! To share the love of music and to educate the musicians of tomorrow is both gratifying and inspiring. I have been teaching since 2005 and provide a fun and focused learning experience where there are no "wrong" questions, and everybody's unique voice is celebrated! Many of my students have gone on to study music in college, and have landed lead roles in musical theatre, choir solos, All State and All Northwest choirs, and won awards in Classical competitions.
In my spare time, I like to hike, eat good food, and spend time with family and friends!
*** Lesson Details *** My studio provides musical knowledge through private lessons including healthy vocal technique, basic understanding of music theory, and basic piano skills. I encourage a fun and focused environment. Come ready to learn, and let's make music!
A typical lesson will include vocalises that detail proper technique, some ear training work, some music theory training, and will be followed by repertoire. During this time, students will learn how to produce clear and authentic diction (English and other languages), breath management, phrase shaping, smooth transitions between higher and lower pitches, stylistic ornamentation, as well as dramatic involvement of the piece.
Students will learn the importance of the foundations of breath support, and how to create a healthy sound for any genre while keeping the unique qualities of their own voice-- no cookie-cutter singers here! Students will also learn how to read music, practice effectively, perform authentically, and take care of their delicate instrument for a lifetime of singing!
While Skype is a marvelous tool that has revolutionized the world of teaching, nothing can replicate natural acoustics. In-studio lessons are suggested for a clearer and more personable lesson. **Skype lessons are reserved for long distance students only**
STUDIO ABSENCE and CANCELLATION POLICIES: Regularly scheduled and attended lessons are the best way to see positive changes in your voice! The smooth running of the Studio Schedule helps make that happen. Therefore, missing lessons is discouraged and make up lessons/cancellations are not given in the Studio unless: - I have had a performance or rehearsal that conflicts with our lesson time and cannot have the lesson as scheduled. If this occurs, I will inform you of the event as soon as possible and give you the option of a make up lesson or cancelling the lesson. - Notices of foreseen cancellations (family vacations, religious holidays, school functions, special occasions etc.) are eligible for rescheduling or cancellation if given before the first lesson of the month. - Of course, life can throw us for a loop! Illness, emergencies, and unforeseen events may possibly be given make ups or cancellations and will be determined at the Studio's discretion. (In the matter of illness: standard procedure is that if the student can attend work/school, they should come to their lesson. A cold can easily be worked around. If the voice is affected (for singing students), Studio time can still be used to work on ear training, music theory, music history, etc.)
All other absences will result in the lesson being marked as "missed". A hard copy of the Studio Policies and further details will be given to the student at the first lesson. Please feel free to ask any questions or clarifications.
*** Studio Equipment *** The studio lessons take place in a designated area of my home. The room includes seating for parents to observe lessons as well as a weighted keyboard (88 keys), music stand, desk, and materials. No pets. Lots of street parking is available. Shopping and coffee/food located within walking distance.
*** Specialties *** Specialties: Classical/Opera Other styles and genres: Musical Theatre, Jazz, Pop, and Rock.
Serena taught my 8 year old son for 9 beginner lessons. The scheduling did not work out for us to continue.
I loved her teaching style! She is calm but also fun for the boy. He loved the warm up exercises. In only 30 minutes of class they were able to play several little pieces. My son could then practice and master them at home. That gave him a sense of accomplishment. This approach is better than working on a hard piece and being frustrated. She focused on sight reading from the start instead of memorizing which is a great habit.
April 24, 2019
Serena is very knowledgeable and super helpful with my daughter' s audition prep. Highly recommend!
April 17, 2019
Serena is excellent! She shares my interest in both vocal training and vocal pedagogy, so she can explain the physiology of what I'm doing wrong when that happens - frequently in my case. She is a delight to work with. Encouraging. Intelligent. Professional. I'm sad to have to drop lessons for now.
I am a lifelong lover of music and education. I will use my 41years of performance experience to show students how to play guitar, bass, or sing, but more importantly, how to enjoy those things!
I believe music is, first and foremost a source of joy, and my lessons are designed to bring that about. Whether you desire to be a full-time rock star, or just a hobbyist, playing in your church praise band, I can show you how to do it, and have a great time doing it!
*** Lesson Details *** My lessons are individualized, based on the needs of the student. I teach all ages, all styles. For guitar, I prefer beginning, or intermediate students, although I think I can help the advanced player as well.
Bass- I teach all ages and skill levels.
*** Studio Equipment *** Pro Tools, Reason, cakewalk pro, Garage Band, and many other software p
Mark was very informative can't wait to get going.got homework to practice should be fun
September 23, 2017
Mark teaches from different perspectives, excellent first lesson and I'm looking forward to being his student for future lessons!
May 29, 2016
Unfortunately, yesterday was my last lesson with Mark, as I am moving to Guam. I would definitely not be giving up my weekly lesson with him if that weren't the case! I've learned so much in the short couple months taking lessons from him. I would recommend him to anyone of any skill level. Very helpful and kind. :)
Current Public Policy PhD candidate at George Mason's Schar School. MA in International Relations from NYU and nearly a decade worth of experience at the college and university levels. I am extremely passionate about education and am dedicated to helping my students succeed. I am excited to begin learning with you!
*** Lesson Details *** College professor available to tutor students in a variety of social science disciplines as well as basic math. Also available for music and dance lessons both online and in person.
--------------- I also teach Online via Skype or FaceTime! ------------------
Hello! Thanks for visiting my Takelessons profile. Let me start off by telling you a bit about myself: I have been performing for over 25 years as a musician, acting since I was a small boy, and working consistently with public speaking, accent reduction and other presentational skills throughout my career. I started my musical education as a woodwind player and settled in to the wonderful world of singing over time. Music has opened me up to so many incredible opportunities from touring the world to performing in marvelous concert halls and working with some of today's most respected artists, as well as giving me the opportunity to expand my performance skills through acting in various plays, musicals, television, and film.
Performing has absolutely b
een my salvation! Throughout my life it has been a best friend and constant source of joy, and I share this gift with others so that it might help them to find the same joy. After more than 10 years of teaching, I have so many new experiences to draw from and share with my students. I spent nearly 10 years performing with Disney in California and abroad in their Tokyo Disney cast, and I must say that those experiences, vast and varied as they are, have given the word "performance" a depth that I couldn't have imagined. Those experiences have made me excited to dive into every lesson with fresh ideas that will mesh well with many tried and tested teaching techniques.
Originally from Los Angeles, I now reside in Orange County and I'm proud to have expanded my studio to serving clients all over the world with online lessons via Skype and FaceTime! I get such joy from sharing my experiences with a diverse group of people from so many walks of life. If you're interested in learning more about my lesson style, feel free to contact me and I'd be happy to talk with you about a plan to help you reach your goals!
For Students of Voice: Teaching Style
Over the past several years I have focused much of my personal growth on developing my ears' ability to pick out and pinpoint vocal “placement”, resonance, subtleties of timbre, changes in pitch, breath support, air speed and flow, pronunciation and diction, and in general, the way in which all of these work together to create style. From these assessments, I work with the student’s particular needs to address each area individually and based on the learning style of each person. To illustrate to the student their method as I see and hear it, as well as ways in which they might make changes to facilitate the ease of singing --be they changes of tessitura (range), length of phrase, tone color, the release of unnecessary tension etc.-- I make use of vocalise (vocal exercises), simile and metaphor, examples from recorded performances, demonstration, self assessment, and techniques to “trick” the voice into acting in a different way, in addition to videos, diagrams, and texts on anatomy and physiology. I feel that all of these tools provide a unique and personalized learning experience for each student.
I've been performing roles in the theatre and on-camera for over 25 years. My BFA in Acting and Directing and my MFA in Classical Acting have afforded me a wide variety of tools and skills to employ in the craft of acting. Performing with professional repertory companies like ACT Theatre, Book-It Repertory, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, and the Shakespeare Theatre in DC, I've gained personal knowledge of the art, craft, and business of being a working actor, which I will put to work for you, in a personalized one-on-one coaching session, either online or in person.
Here's how I can help.
SCENE WORK AND MONOLOGUES: Whether it's dusting off and refreshing monologues you've performed more times than you can count, or developing pieces or scenes for the first time for an upcoming stage or on-camera audition, we can break the material down togethe
r, work on the clarity of your choices and active objectives, and access your personal connection to the material so you'll be ready and confident with a one-of-a-kind performance that reflects the strengths you bring to acting and the story you want to tell.
SHAKESPEARE: Perhaps the most daunting of styles for a contemporary actor, we'll get down to the nuts and bolts of some of the most challenging (and rewarding) material. The famous soliloquies are famous for a reason and can certainly be intimidating, and more obscure material can seem thick and inaccessible. We'll chip away at the mystique of Shakespeare by digging in to the text and verse, activating the language with specificity, and cultivating your personal take on well-known characters or lesser known material they might not have seen before.
DIALECTS AND ACCENTS: From English to Irish to Southern American and beyond, a well executed dialect can be the edge you need to land (and play) that meaty role. I use a multipronged approach that involves ear training to develop an authentic sound, text analysis for clarity of sound substitutions (IPA Proficient), and exercises that pare away stilted and unnatural speech to cultivate an authentic sounding voice that will be your own.
VOICEOVER: I've been booking voiceover gigs on TV, radio, and the internet for over 10 years with clients like Microsoft, Liberty Mutual, UW Medicine, Tableau, Reno Toyota, and Golden One State Credit Union. I can offer tips and tricks of the trade, as well as techniques that can take your VO submissions to the next level and help you book these lucrative contracts.
Jason has been an amazing coach for my incredibly active animated son. He is great at redirecting my boy when he has trouble focusing and provides immediate feedback to help my son make progress. We live in a remote area where actives like this are not offered. We feel blessed that we were able to make a connection with Jason and for his patients with our rural island family. Jason it a true professional and communicates beautifully with me. I am looking forward to continuing lessons for my son!
May 26, 2019
Jason previously worked with my teenage daughter and they made vast improvements in her acting skills and college audition. She was accepted into AMDA. Now he is working with my older daughter to help her get ready to audition at UW and get a working reel together. He is fantastic and really good with any learning differences or styles that might come up.
"I look forward to every lesson. He is really good at breaking down characters and analyzing a script. He really cares. He is awesome!"
"My 9 year old is beginning his acting training and is working well with Robert. Robert had been helpful with guiding us on what is needed to prepare him f
or auditions and improve his abilities. We are very pleased so far!"
"I always trust my instincts :) Yep, Great time with a wonderful instructor. Thank you!"
"David Tom is a very professional and an awesome acting coach/teacher. He takes his time to really make you feel comfortable which makes the whole process
feel natural and constructive. I would recommend his service and have to other actors I know regardless of their experience I think he has the resume and expertise to help any actor at any level. It is rare to find such a successful actor that is also teaching. His classes have helped me so much in my chosen field. Thanks so much David"
"My son had an amazing first magic lesson and couldnt say enough good things about Sean."
"My daughter is 9 years old and had her first class with Gisselle today! She had a blast and learned a lot! She can’t wait for her next lesson:)"
"Omar is an awesome instructor to teach on Method Acting.He understands the student aspiration and train accordingly.he motivates the actor with his excell
ent advises and provide inspirational thoughts to the actor.I am sure he can make best actors/actresses/artists through his own specific ways of method acting skills.thank you Director:)."
"I was one of Jeremy's acting students at Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute last year, and i can say honestly he was and still remains my favorite acting tea
chers i have ever had. He is so incredibly talented himself and passionate about acting and it makes the student even more passionate. He took time to personally help each student and didn't just address us as a whole. His class is fun and very very helpful! He also teaches you about some of the business and tips for auditioning, its not just acting, he is amazing and i miss his class always:)!He also took headshots for my class which I've gotten parts with!:) Everyone take his class!"
For almost a century, swing dancing has attracted enthusiastic, carefree, and highly musical people from all walks of life. If you love its unrestrained movements and nostalgic charm, here are five interesting facts to know before you hit the dance floor.
1. Swing dance goes by many names
Swing belongs to the jazz school of dance, but the term doesn't apply to one single technique. There are several distinct swing styles, and they each developed alongside shifting musical and cultural trends …