All of our teachers are music professionals who hold degrees and have several years of teaching experience for their respective instruments. Many specialize in particular genre's ranging from classical to jazz to contemporary music, but all of our teachers have experience working with students at various levels and ages.
Sisilia Axume received her Bachelor of Music Education degree and Music Teacher Credential from Cal Poly Pomona University. Shortly thereafter, she continued her education at Chapman University where she studied Music Therapy, and became a Board Certified Music Therapist. Sisilia has taught private piano for the past 13 years, was band director of Lassallette Middle School, and taught early childhood development classes at Orange County Childrens Therapeutic Arts Center. Currently, Sisilia teaches at and operates San Marino Music Center in all its endeavors.
John began his musical training at Cal Poly Pomona where he finished with a minor in music and a Bachelor of Science degree. He's been teaching private and group guitar classes since 2004. Prior to owning San Marino Music Center, John focused on guitar performance and has played extensively throughout Southern California as a jazz, classical and rock guitarist. As a teacher, John likes to focus on building a solid music foundation that includes studying technique, sight reading music notation and chord rhythm charts to understand complicated rhythms & syncopation.
Aimee Acevedo began her musical training at the age of 9 on clarinet. When she entered middle school she began to learn saxophone and then began learning flute in high school. Currently, Aimee is pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Tenor Saxophone Performance and Music Education at Azusa Pacific University. She currently studies clarinet under Jennifer Showalter, saxophone under Rusty Higgins, and flute under Shannon Canchola. She has performed with the APU Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, and University Choir and Orchestra on several woodwind instruments. She has years of experience performing in classical, jazz, pop, and latin styles. Along with playing in several ensembles at APU, Aimee also teaches lessons on saxophone, clarinet, and flute and is actively gigging in the Los Angeles area. In her teaching, Aimee hopes to instill an appreciation and passion for music by teaching students fundamentals, proper technique, music theory, and performance practice.
Drew Aron-Guitar, Ukulele
Drew Aron began studying the guitar at age thirteen. He attended California State University, Northridge from 2008-2012 and earned his Bachelor of Music degree in guitar performance. During his studies he was awarded the Andres Segovia Scholarship and was a member of the CSUN Guitar Quartet. Since graduation he has dedicated his time to teaching classical guitar, recording and performing in the greater Los Angeles area. Drew's teaching philosophy is to help each student develop the musical skills necessary to accomplish their own individual goals so that they may become expressive and artistically fulfilled musicians.
Amanda has been playing woodwinds for over 10 years, and began her classical and jazz studies at Citrus College in 2010. She continued studying music at Los Angeles City College, and is currently pursuing a certificate in Music for Early Childhood Education at Pasadena City College. She has several years of college and professional performing and recording experience ranging in jazz, Latin and pop styles. Teaching saxophone, flute and clarinet across Los Angeles, she loves to bring energy into her lessons that cover the elements of music in an engaging and relatable format. .
Victor A Carrracedo studied at L'AULA de Jazz de Barcelona under the mentorship of Quim Sole, graduating with honors in 2011. While at L'AULA, he was awarded a scholarship to study at Berklee College of Music in Boston where he moved in 2011. At Berklee, he garnered great experience as a studio drummer, recording over 40 sessions a year. In 2012, Victor graduated with a Master of Music degree. As an instructor, Victor gives his students the tools they need to create and perform in many styles such as jazz, latin, rock, reggae, etc. Victor's ultimate goal is to share his knowledge about drums with students and see them grow as musicians.
Tigranuhi (Tina) Chapkinyan-Violin, Piano
Mrs. Tigranuhi(Tina) Chapkinyan received her Masters Degree in Music at the Komitas Conservatory of Yerevan in 1987 (Violin Major, Piano Minor). Mrs. Chapkinyan held teaching and Originally from Armenia, Mrs. Tigranuhi(Tina) Chapkinyan received her Masters Degree in Music at the Komitas Conservatory of Yerevan in 1987 (Violin Major, Piano Minor). Mrs. Chapkinyan held teaching and performing position in professional music schools, symphony and chamber orchestras in Armenia. Since arriving in the United States in 2000, she continues her career as a violin and piano instructor and solo performer. Mrs. Chapkinyan is an active member of Music Teacher's Association of California (MTAC), Hollywood Branch. Her successful teaching method which she has developed in her twenty-seven years of teaching experience is reflected in her current student's accomplishments who participate in numerous MTAC recitals and competitions, and play in state-wide conventions.
Guro Elverhoei-Voice, Piano
Guro has been singing and playing piano since the age of 7. She attended Berklee College of Music where she studied classical voice technique and contemporary singing styles such as RnB, pop and gospel. She's recorded many of her original songs and worked with talented musicians in professional studios. At the commencement concert she was chosen to sing in front of 4000 people with Julio Iglesias and Dee Dee Bridgewater as honored guests. Guro has a warm personality and is a very patient but structured teacher. She has a strong knowledge in music theory as well as technical knowledge in both piano and voice, and she goes out of her way to help all of her students to improve their skills.
Dylan Ewen began studying classical piano at age 11. In high school he branched out to other instruments and began writing original music and playing in bands. He went on to graduate Magna Cum Laude from Berklee College of Music in 2014. In 2015 one of his projects was asked to play the LA festival Burger-A-Go-Go which prompted his decision to move to California. Dylan has taught all ages and believes the most important thing a teacher can do is instill a lifelong love of music in their students. A background in theory and technique is important, but Dylan also loves to bring in contemporary examples to spark his students’ interest, whether it be rock, pop, blues or jazz. In addition to teaching, he continues to write and record original music for his personal projects as well as for commercials and short films.
Dr. Cameron Ghahremani-Brass, Piano
Dr. Cameron Ghahremani holds a Doctoral of Musical Arts from the University of Miami, a Master's in Orchestral Trump Performance from McGill University, and a Bachelor of Music from the University of Rochester. He's performed with the Westlake Village Symphony, Golden State Pops Orchestra and the contemporary chamber orchestra, Kaleidoscope. While a member of the Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra, Cameron has shared the stage with such world-class guest artists as Maria Schneider, Dawn Upshaw, Rafael Padron, and Ben Folds. While at the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music Cameron was awarded a teaching assistantship and conducted private lessons and coached the Frost Trumpet Ensemble which reached the semi-finals in the National Trumpet Competition. Dr. Ghahremani began his musical studies first on the piano and received instruction for 13 years. He was also trained in keyboard proficiency, musicianship, and theory at the Eastman School of Music. Since his arrival in Los Angeles, he has been an active trumpet and piano instructor for all ages and levels.
Jason Golday-Guitar, Bass Guitar, Ukulele
Jason studied Jazz and Classical Guitar at Indiana University in Bloomington, receiving his BM in Performance. He received his MFA in Jazz Guitar Performance from California Institute of the Arts. Jason has over fifteen years of public and private teaching experience including middle school, high school and conservatories. Jason is involved in several Los Angeles music projects and frequently performs in diverse venues such as The Echo and Satellite to The Santa Barbara Museum of Contemporary Art and The Hammer Museum. Along with performing, Jason composes music for commercials, short films and silent films.
Shane Graham first began his musical journey on the drums at the age of thirteen. While attending Valencia High Scholl he played in the Marching Band and on the Drum-line. He received his Bachelors of Arts Degree from California State University, Northridge in Music Industry Studies and graduated with Honors. While there, he played in various ensembles including Taiko Drum Ensemble, African Music Ensemble, Jazz Trio, and Wind Symphony. Shane has been teaching drum lessons privately and in groups since 2009 to all age groups. Shane has taught at Our Community School in Chatsworth, La Canada School of Music, private homes and his studio. He is a regular performer in the Los Angeles area drumming for numerous groups. Shane has extensive professional touring experience throughout the United States and Canada. Shane’s philosophy for his students is to make sure they are having fun while at the same time gaining a deep appreciation and a thorough education on the drums. He makes sure his students have a strong grasp of the fundamentals and then branches out to more advance topics from there. The ultimate reward for Shane is to inspire and pass down his knowledge to his students to help them become passionate musicians.
Emily Hayes began studying classical piano at age 5, and she had her debut performance at age thirteen with the Northstate Symphony. Emily has over 8 years of private teaching experience and enjoys sharing her love of music with students of all ages and skill levels. When not teaching, Emily continues to focus on furthering her own musical education. She is currently pursuing her BM in piano performance at USC's Thornton School of Music under the instruction of Vice Dean of Classical Performance and Composition, Dr. Lucinda Carver.
Alyse Hokamp-Flute & Piano
Alyse Hokamp was born and raised in Kailua, Hawai'i. She earned a Bachelor's and Master's degree in flute performance from the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas, and recently moved to Los Angeles. She performs regularly with her husband in The New Rainbows, a flute and guitar duo. Alyse regularly takes orchestral auditions and aspires to be an orchestral flutist. A late beginner on the piano, she began her first piano classes at the end of high school, and practiced earnestly throughout college. A few years after college, she began her first church organist job and has employed as such since then. She is currently the Music Director/Organist at Bethel Lutheran Church in Los Angeles. Alyse has taught beginners young and old, as well as group and private lessons, for over five years. She believes that anyone who wants to learn and enjoy music can, and she aims to help!
Esteban Obando Jaramillo-Piano
Esteban was born in Bogota, Colombia but was raised in Montreal, Canada where he began taking piano lessons very early on. While living in Montreal, Esteban was a very involved member of the music community and spent his time teaching privately, performing in bands, recording and singing in his church choir. In 2011, Esteban performed as the youngest member of the Montreal All-City Big Band in the world-renowned Montreal International Jazz Festival. That same year, Esteban began his studies at Berklee College of music in Boston. During his four years at Berklee, Esteban further developed his abilities as a pianist, performed and recorded with several artists, immersed himself in music technology/production and honed his skills as an arranger in diverse musical genres. He graduated magna cum laude with a degree in piano performance and another in contemporary writing and production as well as a minor in latin music studies. Since graduating in May of 2015, Esteban has continued to teach and perform. As a teacher, Esteban is very invested in his students and motivates them to achieve their goals through passion, method and discipline.
Sara Jones-Violin, Viola
Sara Jones originates from Pasadena, CA and began her violin studies at the age of 7. She attended Pasadena City College for violin studies and transferred to the University of Redlands, where she received both her Bachelor’s and Master’s in Music, Violin Performance. Sara has performed with many orchestral groups such as Crown City Orchestra, Coachella Valley Symphony, Redlands Symphony, along with various string quartets, piano trios, and string duos who perform across Southern California. Besides performing, Sara has been a violin instructor for almost 5 years and has loved every second of it. She uses a traditional approach in her methodology and tries to instil great musical knowledge and passion in her students. She strives to help students become very knowledgeable in playing the violin itself and in music theory, history, ear training, wise practicing, and performance etiquette. Sara hopes to continue this ideology here at San Marino Music Center.
Federico Llach-Bass & Piano
Musically raised in Buenos Aires as a jazz performer and classical composer, Federico has recently received his PhD in Composition from University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB), where he taught courses on Fundamentals of Music, Musicianship and Composition and Digital Music. He founded and currently directs Now Hear Ensemble, a quintet of classically trained musicians collaborating with composers working with electronics and intermedia, in residence at UCSB. Federico’s music has been presented at venues of such geographical and aesthetic diversity as Darmstadt Ferienkurse and Festival Internacional de Jazz Buenos Aires.
Joshua Linsky-Percussion & Piano
Josh Linsky has established himself as a passionate musician from Boston whom has been in Los Angeles since 2009. Josh graduated from Berklee College of Music in 2013 and California Institute of the Arts in 2015. He has directed large music ensembles and curated the production of several collaborative recording projects over the last six years. During his MFA program at CalArts, he provided private lessons to undergraduate and graduate level students and taught high school students in conjunction with California State Summer School for the Arts program in 2015, and the Community Arts Partnership program in 2016. Since graduating from CalArts, Josh has been teaching drum set, percussion and piano lessons on a weekly basis to students of all ages. He creates a fun and inviting environment for students to learn to love music! Josh is deeply interested in the kinds of music his students enjoy and focuses his teaching on the types of things his students want to learn on their instrument while also providing a thorough understanding of fundamentals and technique.
Francisco Lopez-Trombone, Tuba, Trumpet
Francisco Lopez graduated California State University Los Angeles in 2015 with a Bachelor of Music in Music Education (Instrumental) and a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics (General). He has been playing trombone for 14 years and studied with jazz trombonist Jacques Voyemant during his collegiate years. While at Cal State LA, Francisco regularly performed with the Wind Ensemble, the Jazz Ensemble, the CSULA/Olympia Youth Orchestra, and the Afro-Latin Ensemble. He helped reform the CSULA Brass Quintet and provided trombone lessons for participants of the CSULA First Chair Honor Band and visiting schools and ensembles. Francisco has had the privilege of performing with the CBDNA Intercollegiate Band and Kansas as well as playing with the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra. Currently, he is the lead trombonist of the Wiseguys Big Band Machine in Montebello and performs with various groups in the Los Angeles area. Francisco believes lessons should be tailored to the students’ unique needs to better cultivate proficient musicians, interest in the arts in general, and well-rounded human-beings.
Armin Mariano-Violin, Viola, Piano
Armin Mariano began studying violin at age 7 and at 12, he switched to viola because of its warm rich tone. He graduated from Los Angeles County High School for the Arts (LACHSA), and decided to major in music. He was awarded a scholarship to attend Carnegie Mellon University and earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Viola Performance, and Certificate in Music Education. Armin has been an active performer and teacher since 2009 in Los Angeles and in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He teaches both violin/viola and piano to students of all ages. Throughout his studies, Armin has developed a passion for teaching and individualizes lessons for each student based on their different strengths. He focuses on developing basic musical skills using fun and creative ideas.
Jeff Melendez is a woodwind performer and educator based in Los Angeles. Jeff currently studies at the Los Angeles College of Music and is an expert in saxophone, clarinet, flute, oboe and bassoon. His performances include the Los Angeles Latin orchestra and he had the prvivilege to be part of the Tournament of Roses Honor Band for 2 years. Currently, Jeff teaches at Helen Bernstein High school as a coach and was former director of music at Belle Vista Elementary school. Jeff believes in helping students achieve a goal of musical knowledge and experience.
Josh Moore is a talented young guitarist that is currently based in the Los Angeles area. Josh is a frequent performer, both as a solo classical guitarist and as a member of chamber groups and jazz/contemporary groups. He has performed throughout the US and Canada for many guitar societies and classical music series, including concerts for the Great Lakes Guitar Society, the Ventura Guitar Society, The Sacramento Guitar Society, M&T First Fridays at the Albright Knox, and many others. As a competitor, Josh has received 1st prizes in multiple guitar competitions including the Pacific Guitar Festival, ASTA Aaron Green Guitar Competition, and the Young Artists Concerto Competition, which included a solo performance with the Buffalo State Philharmonia. In addition, Josh has received 2nd place finishes including the Sierra Nevada Guitar Competition, the Southern Guitar Competition, and Hamilton International Guitar Competition among others. Josh holds a Professional Studies Diploma from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music under Sergio Assad, a Master of Music degree from the University of Southern California under Scott Tennant, and a Bachelor of Music Performance degree from Buffalo State College under Evan Drummond, and is currently attending USC for his Doctorate of Musical Arts degree.
Guitarist Sean Mulholland is a classical musician who has been a featured performer throughout the country. At 17, Mulholland was accepted to the Hartt School's prestigious guitar program with a performance scholarship. There he spent four years of intense study under prominent New England performer and pedagogue Christopher Ladd. As an instructor, Mulholland has seven years experience with students of all ages. He has received extensive training in teaching principals from the Hartt School’s guitar instruction courses developed by leading pedagogue Richard Provost. Mulholland currently studies with Scott Tennant of the LAGQ at the USC’s Thornton School of Music. He has had the opportunity to participate in masterclasses with artists such as Pepe Romero, Oscar Ghiglia, Richard Provost and William Kannengieser amongst others. As a competitor, Mulholland was recently awarded first prize at the 2015 ASTA Aaron Green guitar competition and is a founding member of Orpheo Guitar Quartet, having performed at LACMA.
Born and raised in Poland, Elzbieta began a highly comprehensive piano and music education at age 7. She attended F. Chopin Music University in Warsaw, further deepening her knowledge and experience via short studies across Europe. Having attained Master’s degrees in Classical Performance and music Pedagogy, she continued her education in Paris, France through a full scholarship from the French government. Upon relocating to Norway in 1992, she worked primarily as a music educator and organist, while simultaneously pursuing her career as a performer and interpretive artist. Over the span of 18 years, she was employed to teach a wide curriculum of college preparatory music courses, including piano performance, music history, theory, and concert production while concurrently working as a private instructor and accompanist. Elzbieta has worked with many highly accomplished soloists and chamber musicians on notable and successful projects in Europe and Scandinavia. She also made appearances on a number of broadcasts on Norwegian and Polish national television and radio and was featured on several chamber recordings produced and distributed by LAWO Classics records.
Danielle Oda-Voice, Piano
Danielle is born and rasied from Mililani, Hawaii. She began piano lessons at the age of 7 and quickly fell in love with the art. She enjoyed playing the works of David Benoit, David Foster and many forms of pop/contemporary music. Feeling a need to try something new, Danielle began voice lessons in middle school, and became even more intrigued - she trained hard in private lessons and began feeling comfortable combining piano and voice. Attending the University of Hawaii, she majored in music, with an emphasis in voice. In May 2014, she made the big move from Hawaii to Los Angeles to pursue music.
Jin Sun Park-Flute & Piano
Jin Sun Park began studying piano at age 5 and flute at age 9. A native of Seoul, Korea, she continued her musical training at Sun Hwa Art Junior High and High School. During this time she studied flute with Nikolaus Delius and was a guest soloist with the Korea Chamber Orchestra. She received her Bachelor of Music degree and Music Teacher Certification at Sook Myung Women’s University in 1995. She received her Master of Music degree at Sook Myung Women’s University in 1998, and following graduation lectured freshmen in the flute/piano program at SMWU. Jin Sun began teaching flute in 1991. Since that time her students have ranged in age from 7 to adult. She has also taught group lessons in elementary school and conservatory. In Korea she played flute professionally with ensembles and symphonic orchestras. In 2013 Jin Sun and her family moved to California. She is currently playing with the Colburn Adult Flute Choir, the Highf’lutin Flute Choir and her church chamber orchestra.
Jeff attended the Eastman School of Music (B.M., ’07) where he studied jazz saxophone with Walt Weiskopf and classical saxophone with Chien-Kwan Lin. After completing his degree, Jeff became a full time production assistant and stage manager at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City. Returning to academia, he received his master of music degree in jazz performance (M.M., ‘11) from the elite Frost School of Music at the University of Miami. While in Miami he studied jazz saxophone with Gary Keller and jazz piano with Whit Sidner. Recently Jeff has been in pursuit of his doctorate in jazz performance (D.M.A.) and has received a certificate in arts entrepreneurship from the University of Southern California. Jeff uses music to inspire his students to challenge themselves and make learning a more enjoyable experience.
Rachel Schlenz is an up and coming vocalist in the Los Angeles/Orange County area. She is currently completing a BM in Music Education at California State University Los Angeles. Rachel is well versed in several genres, notably jazz, classical and popular music. Past credits include a featured ensemble in "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum". She has also worked with The Music Companie, a prestigious caroling company in Los Angeles. Currently, Rachel is slated to sing the role of Adele, the maid in "Die Fleidermaus" at California State University of Los Angeles. As a voice teacher, Rachel is well versed in foundational classical literature, as well as contemporary popular styles and musical theater. Rachel places an emphasis on healthy technique and passionate performance, in a manner that is inspiring for all ages and levels.
Amy Schleusner-Violin, Viola
Amy Schleusner is a born and raised Tahoe native transplanted into Southern California to study Music Education at Cal Poly Pomona. Starting the violin at age nine, music has always been a part of her life. Amy grew up learning the Suzuki method through group classes and private instruction. After her time with Suzuki group classes, she joined the Philharmonic Youth Chamber Orchestra in Reno, Nevada and played with them for two years. Since graduating high school, she has taught beginning violin lessons for students ranging from early childhood into adulthood for four years. One of her future goals is to continue working with beginners, emphasizing the role of good posture for the excellence and enjoyment of strings.
Juan Sixto began his guitar studies as a hobby, intending to replicate and cover the music of The Beatles. Soon, his teenage pastime matured and turned into a passion. His dedication has acquired him the opportunity to accompany and perform with groups such as the “Rio Hondo Guitar Ensemble” and the “Workman Mill Industrial Orchestra” in Whittier, California. Juan Sixto has studied under the private instruction of respected instructors such as John Dearman, Grammy Award winner with the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet. With an abundance of patience and nearly a decade of experience in teaching, Juan has had the privilege of guiding many students through their musical journey. His approach to teaching and his unique methodology can make the daunting skill of reading and playing music feel so easy and natural to any student.
Patrick Shiroishi-Guitar, Saxophone, Piano
Patrick received his BM in Music Therapy and Music Performance in Classical Guitar from Chapman University. While at Chapman, he actively performed in the University's Guitar Quartet and Duo, which in 2008 took first place in a nationwide competition in Brownsville, Texas. He was also given Chapman's Guitarist of the Year Award in 2009 and Music Therapy Scholarship Award in 2008. From 2010-2013, Patrick worked at Orange County Children's Therapeutic Arts Center where he served as the Therapeutic Arts Coordinator. There, Patrick worked as Music Therapist for children with special needs, lead the Early Head Start/Pre-Kinder Arts program, and taught piano and guitar to children of all ages. When he is not teaching, Patrick performs and collaborates with several ensembles and bands around the Los Angeles area.
AnnMarie Stanislaus-Voice, Piano
AnnMarie Stanislaus is a singer and songwriter from Malaysia who studied at the International College Of Music in Kuala Lumpur, and graduated from Berklee College of Music with a degree in Songwriting. AnnMarie is well known for her performance with Grammy Award winning composer/producer, David Foster, at The David Foster & Friends Concert at Stadium Putra, Bukit Jalil in 2011. Aside from performing, AnnMarie has also been a dedicated Voice and Piano Teacher and Show Choir Vocal Coach, teaching students whose age groups range from children to adults. She has given private voice lessons and has coached show choirs at International schools. In 2013, she conducted a Songwriting Workshop at the International College of Music. Currently, she’s a music instructor and continues to perform extensively in the music scene here in LA.
Alejandro (Alex) Thompson-Cello, Piano
Born in Mexico, Alejandro Thompson began his cello studies at age 5. He is currently a student at Azusa Pacific University School of Music pursuing his bachelors degree in Cello Performance. He has been a dedicated teacher since 2010, and has played in many orchestra's as well as attended music festivals in many places such as Michigan, Ohio, New York, Colorado, Utah, and here in California. He has been a finalist and a winner of numerous music competitions and has a passion for performing as he maintains a busy performance and competition schedule, but he is also dedicated to teaching students and giving them the same opportunities that was given to him. He believes that with motivation and a work ethic, anyone can learn how to enjoy playing an instrument.
Kevin Yokota is a graduate of University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music. Kevin has over 10 years of teaching experience and is passionate about sharing his love for drumming with students. Kevin covers a wide range of drumming topics including technique, groove, rudiments, sight-reading, styles, songs, and time. He is enthusiastic about teaching drummers of all ages and ability levels. Whether it's learning how to hold the drumsticks or preparing for a college audition, Mr. Yokota equips each one of his students with the tools they need to become a great drummer and have fun. As a drummer/percussionist, Kevin has performed and recorded extensively with many world-class musicians including Sam Amidon, Eric Reed Trio, Inc. No World, INGA, Snowblink, Adam Levy, and Hi Fi Honeydrops. His drumming has also been featured on many movies, T.V. shows, and commercials.