- Daniel Davis
- Eric Martinez
- John Moore
- Keith Johnson
- Natalie Andrews
- Teresa Valenzuela
- Jonathan Travis
- John Meier
- Renée Saxon
- Cynthia Elek
- Randi Meador
- Jay Eldridge
- Will Goble
- Ross Lewicki
- Parker Mann
- Chandra Susilo
- Regina Nixon
- Neray Bailey
- Stephanie Crawford
Daniel Davis, Guitar
Daniel Davis teaches all levels and styles of guitar. He holds Bachelor of Music and Master of Arts degrees from the world famous Berklee College of Music. He has taught guitar at the college level for the past thirty years and currently teaches at Mesa Community College. The author of two books published by Neil A. Kjos Music Company, he has studied and performed with some of the greatest entertainers in the world including: William G. Leavitt, Sandler and Young, Joe pass, comedian Danny Gans, Barney Kessel the Ringling Brothers and Barnum Bailey Circus. Dan was awarded the prestigious Ovation Guitar Award by Ovation Guitar Company. As a performer, he leads a variety band in the Phoenix area and has for over twenty years.
Eric Martinez, Community Music Educator
Dr. Eric Martinez is veteran music teacher originally from El Paso, Texas. He has been in the valley for the past eighteen years and has taught every instrument in some capacity. He currently teaches middle school band, orchestra and general music for Cartwright School District in Phoenix. In addition, he teaches several music history classes through the Maricopa County Community College District, instructs piano and guitar through the 21st Century After-School Program, is an advisor for the school drama department, teaches privately for several music studios, and is a peer-counselor for the Estrella Mountain and Rio Salado Community Colleges.
Eric holds a Bachelor’s Degree in music education from New Mexico State University and a Masters Degree in music education, secondary education and counseling. His background and knowledge in English as a second language, gifted, Spanish immersion and special education has enabled him to help all his students achieve their musical goals.
His philosophy is to provide a musical experience that is fun, exciting and stimulating for all levels of musicians whether music is a hobby or life-long career.
John Moore, Piano, Audio Production and Ensemble Director
A native of Chicago, Illinois, John Moore began playing the piano at age 5 and has over forty years of experience. Originally he was playing by ear but enrolled music school at age 6. His studies include classical piano at Northwestern University and jazz at Roosevelt University. Music has been a life-long gift to him, and his dedication to the piano became apparent when he ways playing four to five hours a day.
Music has been a journey for John, and his experiences enabled to embrace all cultures. The multidimensionality of music that he has seen in different genres has sparked intrigue in the cultures and people behind those styles. As part of his journey, John says that his most memorable gig was playing for for Andre Crouche. John’s favorite piece to play is Chopin’s Nocturne, Opus 9, Number 2 that he describes as a “beautiful love song.”
As a seasoned musician, John has some advice for younger musicians. He says that it’s essential to “sculpt your identity, be distinct in your style, learn from others, but stay true to yourself.” He believes this because he sees many musicians who seem to blend in rather than stand out.
John encourages students to practice as much as possible since he used to practice all day long when possible. He credits his success to his rigorous practice schedule.
Keith Johnson, Community Music Educator
Keith Johnson was born in the Washington D. C. metro area. As a child, he was exposed to many cultural events and developed his interest in music, particularly the drums. After hearing the Latin beat of bongos and congas, this rhythm inspired him to hit the streets to learn more about Afro-Cuban music which was played in Adams Morgan, the Latino community of D.C. Watching their drumming and dancing was one of the greatest experiences of his life and started his journey of playing many styles of music utilizing a variety of drums.
Keith’s journey led him to Africa to learn about their drums. He met and studied with Yacub Addy of Ghana, a master drummer for a number of years. He learned that the tonal language was the way of communication in Africa. On his first trip to West Africa; Accra Ghana, he was amazed at the people and the food. He learned that traditional drums come in families for example: Ewe drums (Sogo, Kidi, Kagan, Atsimevu, Boba, and Kroboto). Some of the drums are only played for the King. After studying for many years and his travels to Africa, his teachers entitled him as a master drummer.
After extensive travel to West Africa to include Bamako, Mali, Dakar, Senegal, and Accra Ghana and his research on drums, Mr. Johnson became a craftsman of tradition with musical instruments. These instruments cover a wide range including Membranophones: talking drums, water drums, panlogo, djembe; Chordophones: Kora 21- stringed harp (grandfather to the banjo and guitar), gonji, violin, riki harp, lute; Aerophones: whistle, panpipes, signal flutes, transverse flutes; Idiophones: gourd rattles, seed pods, thumb piano, balaphone, and cocoon. During his research in the Caribbean Islands of Trinidad and Tobago, Keith learned of the steel drums, a musical instrument indigenous to the island. This instrument was an extension of the African drum but with stretched metal to create pitch similar to skin being stretched on a drum. The steel drum was like hearing the piano on 55- gallon oil drums. The tenor pan plays the melody while the double second plays harmony. The other drums are the guitar, cello, and bass pans. It creates a full sound of a steel pan orchestra with various styles of musical genre; classical, jazz, calypso, and popular songs.
Natalie Andrews, Voice, Musical Theater, Community Music Educator
Natalie Andrews grew up in Louisville, Kentucky performing in various performing arts including musicals, choirs, Shakespeare productions, improv comedy groups and operas. She studied classical voice in private lessons starting at the age of ten. One of Natalie’s fondest childhood memories is singing and writing songs on long car rides with her aunt who was the beginning of her lifelong relationship with music and creativity. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre from the University of Oklahoma (OU), School of Drama. During her time at OU, she performed in the American debut n of “Ernestine Schuswap Gets Her Trout” by Tomson Highway which was awarded a performance at the Kennedy Center by the American College Theatre Festival. Natalie has experience performing with several bands, including The Jimmy James Trio and Shine: A Pink Floyd Tribute. She has also produced and directed several theatre productions including Matt and Ben by Mindy Kaling, The Last Five Years by Jason Robert Brown, and an original devised piece titled Into the Fading Light.
Natalie began her career as a teaching artist in high school, when she took an outreach position at Walden Theatre teaching theatre and improv to elementary school students with little or no access to arts education. She continued to teach these theatre classes throughout high school and college. After graduating from OU, she completed a teaching assistantship for the French Ministry of Education, spending two semesters teaching conversational English at a high school in Brioude, France. She was an adjunct professor of Voice and Movement for the University of Oklahoma, School of Drama from 2012-2013. Natalie started teaching private voice lessons at the Infinity Music Arts Academy in Norman, Oklahoma, where she served as Head Vocal Instructor for two years. Upon moving to Phoenix, she was immediately enamored with the Phoenix Conservatory of Music and its unique musical community and programming.
Natalie is also the Approved Care Network Coordinator for Healing TREE, a nonprofit that assists people in recovering from traumatic experiences. In addition, she is a certified yoga instructor and has taught yoga classes at Ashtanga Yoga Studio and the Wellness Center. She incorporates elements of this into her voice lessons to promote healthy alignment and alleviate muscular tension that may interfere with singing.
Forever a student herself, Natalie continues to develop her musicianship by studying guitar, piano, audio production, and songwriting. She recently presented ongoing research collaboration with Laura Meador titled Original Music Programming: Nurturing the Human Artist at the 2015 Berklee City Music Summit at Columbia College.
Teresa Valenzuela, Voice
Teresa Valenzuela is a professional musician and vocal instructor hailing from Phoenix, Arizona. She has been teaching voice and piano for ten years. Her students have included members of the Phoenix Children’s Choir, the Phoenix Boys Choir, the winner of the Chicks With Picks competition, and many praise & worship leaders across the community. She works with recording artists before concert performances and coaches musicians during the creative writing and studio recording process.
Teresa is a speech-level trained singer. Her philosophy is to treat each musician as an individual. Therefore, each lesson is flexible, relaxed, and conformed to the ability, focus, drive, and goals set by each student.
Teresa currently performs with four local bands and is also a worship leader at several churches across the Valley.
Johnny Travis, Music Education Intern, Bass
A native of Phoenix, Arizona, Jonathan Travis has been a part of Phoenix Conservatory of Music since 2012. Having just picked up bass guitar in 2010, Jonathan joined PCM’s College Prep Program and flourished. Over the course of 3 years in the College Prep Program, he participated in a total of eighteen ensembles and gained knowledge in several styles of music. The performance experiences gained through PCM influenced him to join several local bands. As a member of the band Northern Motel, he reached the semi-finals of Alice Cooper’s Proof is in the Pudding competition in 2016. He also reached the televised semi-finals of Tengo Talento, Mucho Talento as a member of Chris Reyes’ backing band that same year. Whenever he isn’t working at PCM, Jonathan enjoys furthering his musical abilities on the bass guitar by practicing and researching new techniques.
John Meier, Community Music Educator
John Meier is a local guitarist and composer in the Phoenix area. He has been studying music privately since the age of ten. In, 2014 he received a Bachelors degree in jazz performance from Arizona State University (ASU). At ASU he studied with Jeff Libman and Michael Kocour. John has been teaching private lessons in the Phoenix area since 2010 for students age 8 to fifty. A writer and composer, he performs many styles frequently throughout the valley, but his main focus is jazz. John’s music has been featured at the Nash, Arizona State University Jazz Composition Contest and Reno Jazz Festival.
Renee Saxon, Community Music Educator
Ms. Saxon is a mezzo-soprano whose primary instrument is voice. She is certified in both Somatic Voiceworks® and Total Singer Voiceworks®. A member of both the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) and the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), she regularly continues her education in voice, focusing primarily in contemporary commercial music.
Additionally, Renée teaches beginning to intermediate guitar and piano, early childhood, after-school and community programs for children and adults.
Renée is the former director of the Girl Scout Melody chorus and is certified by Opera America to present the Music! Words! Opera! Program.
Ms. Saxon is state-certified as a substitute teacher. With an undergraduate degree in English Literature, and Masters in organizational management, she worked in the corporate world for twenty-three years before venturing out to develop voice accompaniment software that she is presently marketing to music publishers. She also produces customized accompaniment in her digital studio.
Ms. Saxon studied voice under Ms. Amy Gingrich-Perciballi; the Somatic Voiceworks® method under Jeanette LoVetri (NYC); and Total Singer Voiceworks® method under Lisa Popeil (LA). She has played piano and guitar since her teens and sang for fourteen years in a professional chorale and has sung as a soloist and member of small ensembles.
Cynthia Elek, Community Music Educator
Cynthia Elek holds a Master of Music in Opera Performance from the University of Maryland’s Opera Center, which offers comprehensive training for the stage through classes in scene study, Shakespeare, improvisation and stage combat as well as opera repertoire, diction and languages. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Art History from Oberlin College, where she studied piano, theory and voice in the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. She is a music and drama specialist, teaching artist and national workshop presenter for the Kennedy Center Community Partnerships, the Kennedy Center’s Professional Development for Teachers division and the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts. She taught both early childhood music and senior outreach at the Levine School of Music and was a visiting music specialist at Maryland’s Greenwood School. Ms. Elek was a company actress and classroom drama specialist for five years with InterAct Story Theatre, a Maryland-based professional children’s theatre company, and continues her work with InterAct as a drama-for-literacy workshop presenter. She has appeared in opera, film, commercials and voice-overs and has directed opera and musical theatre for university and community theatre organizations. A native of Dallas, Texas, Ms. Elek moved to Maryland from Alaska, where her thirteen-year residence included performing, teaching university voice, writing visual arts criticism and managing programs for various music and theatre organizations.
Ms. Elek joined the Arizona Commission on the Arts teaching roster in fall 2004 and is currently listed as a Music Artist. She has taught after-school drama for the Kyrene School District enrichment program and Desert View Learning Center in Paradise Valley. She is an active arts-integrated residency teaching artist and workshop presenter whose clients include Higley, Scottsdale, Peoria, Chandler and Globe school districts; the Arizona State Library; Arizona Wolf Trap; and national Kennedy Center sites in Wyoming, New Mexico and South Carolina.
Ms. Elek is a member of the Arizona Opera Chorus and has performed at Broadway Palms, New Carpa Theatre and Theater Works. She is a volunteer reader for SAG’s Arizona BookPALS and RFBD and a member of the Arizona Reading Association. Her article on integrating music with literacy through the use of chant in the classroom appeared in the fall 2009 issue of Arizona Reading Journal.
Randi Meador, Voice, Piano, and Ensemble Director
Randi Meador developed a passion for music at a young age. At age 7, she began to study the violin. After perusing the violin for nine years, she began to expand her knowledge for music through voice and piano. Sense then Randi has been involved in various choral and music ensembles. After graduating from high school, she began to pursue her passion for music at Glendale Community College. When attending the music department at Glendale Community College, Randi was involved in numerous music ensembles including; A Capella Choir, chambers ensemble, vocal jazz ensemble and hand bell ensemble. Currently, Randi is pursuing a double major in music education and voice performance at Ottawa University under the direction of Dr. Craig Peterson of Mesa Community College. Randi is also involved in many choral ensembles, such as Conto Vivo choral. Her involvement in music ensembles has allowed her to develop her passion and interest for music. Randi also enjoys sharing music through out her community and singing throughout the valley. She enjoys singing at churches across the valley and helping others enjoy music. Randi has been teaching for three years and hopes to help develop the love for music in the community. PCM has allowed her love for music to expand and help others achieve their love for music through early childhood development classes, group and private piano lessons and group and private voice lessons.
Jay Eldridge, Bass, Beginning Guitar, Audio Production, Community Music Educator
Finding music in his teenage years, Jay Eldridge became a servant of the electric bass, and shortly thereafter discovered Marcus Miller. This, in turn, led to a rigorous practice schedule, until he was able to replicate original compositions with precision. Gigging as a pit musician, performing Sunday Services at Ada Bible Church with over a thousand members and teaching private bass lessons to beginner students, created a defined path in pursuit of his passion at Berklee College of Music.
During his time in Boston, he tutored his fellow undergraduates on harmony, ear training and arranging, while honing his skills as a multi instrumentalist on electric bass, piano and guitar.
In 2015, after earning his Bachelors in contemporary writing and production from Berklee, he elected to further his education at Berklee College of Music in Valencia, Spain to pursue his Masters in electric bass performance with production concentration. During his tenure in Valencia, he studied under Gary Willis, and continued gigging on the side. Dedication, growth and education represent Eldridge’s ideals upon which he will continue to build and influence aspiring students of music.
Will Goble, College Preparatory Program Coordinator, Jazz Ensembles, Upright Bass
Will Goble, from Durham, North Carolina, is steadily carving out a unique space for himself as a bassist, composer, bandleader and educator.
Will became interested in jazz and related art forms after growing up in the creative music scene that still thrives around the Raleigh Durham and Chapel Hill area in North Carolina. Upon departing Durham for Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida in early the 2000’s, he quickly flourished under the tutelage of bassist Rodney Jordan and famed pianist Marcus Roberts. His relationship with Roberts extended onto the bandstand as Marcus invited Will to perform with his trio in a number of performances. Through Roberts, Will met drummer and vibraphonist Jason Marsalis, eventually joining Jason’s quartet in 2008. He can be heard on three of Jason’s most recent studio releases, Music Update (2009), In a World of Mallets, (2013) and The 21st Century Trad Band (2014).
Upon relocating once again, this time to Atlanta, GA, Will set about documenting his work as a bandleader. His first album, Some Stories Tells No Lies (2012), features his own trio (drummer Dave Potter and Pianist Austin Johnson) joined by trumpeter Marcus Printup and saxophonist Chad Eby. His second album, Consider The Blues will be released in May 2016 on OA2 Records (Origin Arts). Consider The Blues highlights Will’s growth as a composer and is bolstered by strong performances from Potter, pianist Louis Heriveaux, and saxophonist Gregory Tardy. Currently based in Phoenix, AZ, Will continues to tour with Marsalis and perform frequently as a sideman and bandleader. Along with Marsalis and Roberts, Will has performed with Marcus and Joan Belgrave, Wessell Anderson, Martin Bejerano, Eric Reed, Gregory Tardy, Eric Rasmussen, George Colligan, Lew Soloff, Etienne Charles, Michael Kocour, Fred Wesley, and many others. An active educator, Will is on faculty at Scottsdale Community College in Scottsdale, AZ. He is the coordinator of the College Prep Program at the Phoenix Conservatory of Music where he teaches bass, jazz ensemble and music theory. Will has taught at clinics, camps, and master classes across the U.S. and often conducts workshops and private lessons at The Nash, the performance and education home of Jazz In Arizona.
Ross Lewicki, Jazz Piano, Ensemble Direction and Music Theory
A native of Phoenix, Arizona, Ross Lewicki started studying piano at the age of 7 and was composing music by the age of ten when his father, a professional bassist, introduced him to music sequencing software that allowed him to create and record music on his personal computer. By the time Ross was thirteen, he had already composed two CD’s with all original material scored for piano, bass, drums, guitar and horn section.
Currently Ross is a jazz piano performance major at Arizona State University where he studies with Michael Kocour. He particularly enjoys spending time practicing the piano and composing and transcribing solos from the jazz greats. In addition, Ross maintains a teaching studio where he works primarily with younger students.
Ross’s work both as a pianist and composer has attracted significant attention beyond the Phoenix area. Pianist and composer Adam Benjamin chose Ross’s composition Forty-Two as the External Judge’s Choice at the 2013 Arizona State University Student Jazz Composition Competition. More recently, Ross was nominated for the American Pianists Association 2014 Cole Porter Fellowship.
Parker Mann, Percussion, Drum Kit, Ensemble Direction and Music Theory
Parker Mann is a percussionist, drummer, composer and educator based out of Phoenix, Arizona. He was born and raised in Midlothian Virginia, a community just outside of Richmond. He holds a Bachelor of Music in Percussion Performance from Arizona State University and is currently pursuing a Master of Music in Jazz Percussion. His specialties include jazz drums, hand percussion, marimba and concert percussion. Around Phoenix, he can be seen performing in a wide range of ensembles. Recently he played with Chandler Symphony Orchestra, The Salt River Brass Band, The Scottsdale Philharmonic, The Village Blasting Club, The Detour Theater Company and the Sun Combo, and for the past two years he has played with Blue Lake Festival Orchestra, Blue Lake Festival Band, Staff Jazz Ensemble, Staff Band and BLFAC Percussion Ensemble in Twin Lakes Michigan. At Arizona State University (ASU) he has played with the Wind Band, the Symphony Orchestra, the Lyric Opera Theater, the African Drum Ensemble, the Contemporary Percussion Ensemble, the jazz combos and the Javanese gamelon orchestra.
He enjoys teaching at the Phoenix Conservatory of Music where he is a faculty member, creating classes and private lessons in percussion, drums, music theory, piano and guitar. He instructs percussion at Skyline High School, where the percussion section earned second place in the state at the most recent ABODA state championship. In addition he instructs private lessons in percussion and piano at Phoenix Music Lessons. He writes original music both for solo instruments and chamber groups as well as film scoring for students in the ASU film program. Outside of music he loves hiking, backpacking and traveling.
Chandra Susilo, Community Education Coordinator, Violin
Chandra Susilo was born in Hawaii and began playing violin at the age of five. In high school, Chandra made her debut with the Honolulu Symphony. She had the privilege of studying in studios and master classes with teachers such as William Preucil, Andrés Cárdenas, Daniel Guedes, Pinchas Zukerman, Andrew Dawes and Danwen Jiang. She received her Masters at Arizona State University (ASU) where she won the concerto competition and performed as a member of the Herberger string quartet.
Regina Nixon, PCM Executive Director / Curriculum Designer and Instructor
Regina Nixon joined Phoenix Conservatory of Music (PCM) in January of 1999 with a wealth of administrative and musical skills to draw from. She has a strong background in administration including customer service skills, scheduling, salary cost planning, accounts payables and receivables, inventory control, contract negotiations and organizational management. Regina has been involved in every aspect of PCM’s business and is instrumental in continued program growth and curriculum development. She attended Arizona State University’s School of Music, Honors Program and the Music Theatre Program as a recipient of The Barbara Long Opera Award. She also attended Glendale Community College-Music Studies with an emphasis in guitar performance. Proficient in piano, guitar, voice and acting, her principal teachers include Bonnie Lou (Toigo) Olander, Charles Hulihan, Michael Wieser and Patricia Irby. She furthered her studies in master classes with Enrique Madriguera, Frank Koonce, Mesut Ozgen and Nikita Koshkin. She received first place in the MCCCD outstanding Performers Competition for Chamber Ensemble, Guitar and second place in the MCCCD outstanding Performers Competition for Solo Instrumentalists, Guitar.
Regina has presented several professional development workshops in assessment, working with music and reading, and music movement and emergent literacy on a city and state level. Most notable, she has presented for The Maricopa County Libraries, The Arizona Library Association, and Kindercon, an annual State primary Educators Conference, and Phoenix Elementary School District #1. She has facilitated arts and academic integrated in school residencies for pre-kinder and kinder for the Litchfield Elementary School District and Washington Elementary School District. Nationally, she has completed training from the Center for Music and Young Children in Princeton, NJ to teach early childhood developmental music programs. And she has been a presenter at the Berklee City Music National Conference on resource development. Regina has a working knowledge of Arts Standards Rationale. In 2012, she received her PULSE Instructor Certification from the Berklee City Music Network, Berklee College of Music and in 2014 received her PULSE 2 Train the Trainer Certification and joined an elite group of PULSE trainers chosen to as regional and national training presenters.
Neray Bailey, Piano and Voice
Neray Bailey joined the Phoenix Conservatory of Music in 2009 with nearly thirty years of experience in piano and vocal performance and instruction. After obtaining her high school diploma from the Bul Bul Music School, a special school for gifted children under the Azerbaijan State Conservatory of Music, Neray attended the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, obtaining Masters degrees in vocal and piano performance with high honors. Throughout her professional career, she has held numerous positions in both academia and the musical performance sector, including: Soloist at the State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater (1985-1997), Vocal Performance Instructor (1985-1991) and Professor of Vocal Performance (1991-1997) at the Azerbaijan State Conservatory of Music, Pianist (1998-2008) at the School of Ballet Arizona, Music Teacher (2003-2008) at Irene’s Happy Day Child Care, and Voice Teacher, Choir Instructor and Accompanist (2004-2009) at Rosie’s House: A Music Academy for Children.
As a classically trained opera singer (singing voice of mezzo soprano), Mrs. Bailey has performed in numerous classical opera productions, frequently holding lead roles. In the course of her artistic career as both a pianist and a vocalist, Mrs. Bailey has also been the recipient of a number of awards, including the M.I. Glinka Competition Certificate of Achievement Award (1981), the Transcaucasus Performing Artists Competition 1st Place Winner Award (1985), the Academy of Arts of Azerbaijan Honorary Membership Award (1990), and the Toulouse International Singing Competition Award (1991). In addition to her work at PCM, she is a piano accompanist and piano and voice teacher at the Scottsdale School of Ballet where she has worked since 2007. Mrs. Bailey holds Masters and Bachelors degrees from the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory of Music. She has sung in numerous operas companies and has toured extensively throughout Europe and the former Soviet Union. She holds many awards and honors and for more than twelve years was a principal performer for the Azerbaijan State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater and served as an instructor and then professor of solo performance at the Azerbaijan State Conservatory of Music. She served as an accompanist for the School of Ballet Arizona from 1998-2008 and worked for Irene’s Happy Day Child Care as a music instructor, teacher and performance director.
Stephanie Crawford, Piano
A Phoenix native, Stephanie Crawford is a classically trained pianist and began her piano studies at the age of five. She credits her musical foundation to her first piano teacher and mentor, the late Frances Ballard of The Piano Room.
During her childhood, Stephanie participated in numerous performances with the Arizona State Music Teachers Association and the Federation of Music Clubs for eleven years. After graduating high school, Stephanie branched out in music composition. Included in her body of work are scores composed in various genres of music for short films produced at Scottsdale Community College Film School.
In July 2012, Stephanie performed for the O-Live! Theatre in the production of Sister Mary’s House and has also arranged and coordinated musical works for the 2009 and 2013 Christmas Spectacular at El-Bethel Church in Phoenix, Arizona. Stephanie holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music from the Herberger Institute of Design and the Arts at Arizona State University.
In addition to teaching at the Phoenix Conservatory of Music, Stephanie presently carries her own clientele of private piano students. She is also a hired musician for the Phoenix Christian Reformed Church, holding the position of piano accompanist. At Stephanie’s home church assembly, she has been the lead keyboardist for over fifteen years and, since 2008, has filled the position of choir director.