Meet Our Teachers

Pika G.

Piano, Bass, Flute, Cello
Pika is the director of Prince Music Company and has a passion for learning and music education. She believes strongly in the importance of remaining focused during lessons, and practicing at home to achieve optimal results. She teaches piano, flute, bass, and cello to students ages five and up. She pushes her students, expecting them to perform at their highest level. Her teaching methods tend to work best for the highly motivated with parents who encourage routine at-home practice. Her lessons are very structured in order to create disciplined musicians. She graduated from the University of Minnesota School with a degree in music and also studied jazz in New Orleans, Lousiana. Pika has extensive music education, studying in institutions and privately for over twenty years. She has taught since 2012 and during that time has put in over 3000 teaching hours.

Ukulele, Voice, Piano, Guitar, Violin, Saxophone
Michelle has been involved in music and the arts her entire life beginning in her church choir. She was heavily influenced by her father who a music educator and instilled the values of music education in his kids. Learning the importance of music at such a young age has made Michelle want to influence the next generation of Little Mozarts. She wants others to see the joy they can get from learnrning to play an instrument. Her extensive background in music education includes her attendance at the University of North Dakota bachelor of fine arts program for theater performance.

Michelle is is a multi instrumentalist who is able to pick up a new instrument and learn it quickly. Her passion for music is noted by her peers as she has demonstrated her ability in teaching others how to learn as well. When Michelle is not teaching you can see her perform in the midwest on her primary instruments, the ukulele and voice.

Michelle M.

Luke P.

Drums, Guitar, Bass, Ukulele, Piano
With over twenty years of experience performing everything from rock and roll to jazz, it goes without saying that Luke loves music and would love to share his wealth of knowledge with you. He began playing saxophone and piano at a very young age before discovering that he had a knack for rhythm and quickly became a force to be reckoned with behind the drum set. Shortly thereafter he picked up the guitar and a number of other stringed instruments. Luke has performed several hundred shows and appeared on about a half dozen records over the past couple of decades, and graduated from the University of Minnesota where he studied music among other things. In addition to his zeal for playing music, Luke is passionate about teaching others, especially young people (though he’ll take anybody), and he hopes to spread the joy that music can bring to one’s life. He is a patient instructor with the ability to adapt to the needs of his students, and is currently offering drum, guitar, bass guitar, ukulele, and piano lessons.

Music Therapy, Trumpet, Guitar, Voice, Piano
Stephanie is a student of Augsburg University studying music therapy. She has previously earned an Associates Degree of Fine Arts in Music from Anoka Ramsey Community College and because of her musicianship, received a scholarship awarded by the Augsburg music department. Stephanie has been studying music for over ten years - primarily trumpet - and has been involved in various performances including in musicals, concert bands, solo and small ensembles, brass quartets, marching bands, pep and jazz bands. She enjoys teaching students and seeing their desire to learn as it is an inspiration to herself. Music therapy helps her pursue a passion of being able to help people meet their needs through music. Music is a helpful tool for kids or anyone with autism by helping them learn social skill and enjoy different aspects of life. For those with mobility issues, music therapy can aid in expanding their range of mobility. She is grateful to be apart of these students lives - they teach her as much as she teaches them.

Stephanie J.

Trumpet instructor Stephanie Johnson

Scott N.

Piano, Guitar
Scott enjoys teaching kids and adults. His technique is tailored to each induvidual student because one method does not always work for everyone. He believes that knowing how to play the piano helps you excel at other areas of life. Scott's piano lessons are a low pressure enviroment. He tries to make the lessons fun, especially for kids, so they enjoy coming each week. Scott was born in Tehran, Iran, and began playing piano when we was five years old. At fifteen, he became a teacher's aid and studied under the direction of Mr. Safri in Iran. He went on to receive his music certification in 2016 and has continued his studies here in Minnesota. Scott began teaching kids, age seven to thirteen, at the Aria Institution, and has performed piano at several concerts, as well as at universities. He works mostly with classical piano, but also enjoys contemporary music. Scott teaches all ages and skill levels on the piano. He also teaches beginner guitar to youth and focuses on developing technique and note reading.

Voice, Piano, Ukulele, Guitar
Emma is a vocalist, performer, teacher, and songwriter with a passion for exploring and sharing a diverse array of music. She is a recent graduate from the University of Minnesota Duluth with a Bachelor of Arts in Music degree with minors in Jazz Studies and Psychology. During her time at UMD, Emma’s vocal training has included jazz, opera, classical/art song, and musical theater styles. She also plays ukulele and piano, and likes to accompany herself often. During her senior year, Emma was elected as Vocal Representative of the Music Student Association at UMD. In the spring of 2016, she had the opportunity to study music history abroad in Italy, touring several cities in the Northeastern areas of the country. Emma has been involved in several top ensembles at UMD including Jazz Combo I, Vocal Jazz (Lake Effect), Chamber Singers and University Singers. She has also performed as a soloist with Jazz Ensemble I and the UMD Wind Ensemble. Last year, Emma was involved in a free-jazz improvisation based on her original poem, “To Feel”, which she performed with UMD’s Jazz Combo I.

She has also had the opportunity with the Lake Effect ensemble to open for Damian McGinty on his Slow Dance Tour in 2018. Through UMD’s University Singers, Emma has had the opportunity to perform with Ethan Bortnick in a televised concert event and has participated in master classes with artists such as Chanticleer. Emma has performed with The Association, a six-piece jazz combo, in cities throughout Minnesota and were recently featured at the Hormel Nature Center holiday show for the second year in a row. Emma now lives in the Twin Cities pursuing her music career through performing, teaching, and collaboration with artists everywhere.

Emma S.

Carlos R.

Drums, guitar
Carlos is a drummer, guitarist, and recording musician. He began to learn and play the drums at a young age with private instructors, and has over twenty-five years of experience. Having played with numerous bands, he has been able to master rock, soul, blues, funk, and studies salsa, and samba rhythms.

Besides playing the drums and guitar, his experience in songwriting allows him to connect with aspiring musicians. He plans to stay for a couple of seasons in Minneapolis, sharing his love and passion for rhythm.

Trombone, Trumpet, Low Brass, Piano
Neftaly is a student of Thomas Ashworth at the University of Minnesota. He is pursuing a Master's degree in bass trombone performance. In 2018 he obtained his Bachelor's of Music Performance degree at the University of Central Arkansas. He teachs beginner to advanced trombone and specialized in classical and jazz trombone. He teachers beginner to intermediate trumpet and low brass and beginner piano. He is a multi instrumentalist with a strong footing in band and small combo arrangements.

Neftaly G.

Tamir N.

Saxophone, Clarinet, Upright and electric bass, Jazz Ensemble
Tamir pursued coursework in Saxophone Performance and Political Science at the University of Arizona and received his degree in Woodwind Performance from McNally Smith College of Music. As a student he performed in masterclasses with Delfayo Marsalis, Eugene Rousseau and Bob Mintzer as well as arranging charts for well known national acts. Currently he performs with The Esperanza Ensemble, a modern classical chamber music group as well as recording on saxophone and bass for local and national acts. Most recently he has recorded on saxophone and bass at Motown Studios.

In his 20+ years of teaching Temir had coached some remarkable students across the country, but his passion lies in developing strategies for making music accessible to people with physical and mental challenges. In addition to his work with the Hopewell Jazz Ensemble, he has worked with school band programs at Talmud Torah school in St. Paul, at Olson Middle School, and at Stonebridge World Hgih School in Brooklyn Center.

Mitchel Lowder has been playing drum set since the fourth grade. He is currently a freshman in high school. He has played for many performances at his church, and jazz bands. He is passionate about educating students and hopes to increase their musical knowledge as they progress through his course. When he says percussion, he offers to educate his students on snare drum, drum set, xylophone/bells/vibraphone/marimba, timpani, and most importantly cowbell.

Mitchel Louder

Diana L.

Piano, Accordion
I have played the piano and other instruments all my life, plus singing, and am passionate that learning music is probably the best thing in life! I would love to work with you with hopes that you will be very rewarded for your hard work. Currently I am semi-retired, a church accompanist, accompanying several other groups, and looking forward to teaching again. I also have a Bachelors Degree in music.

Logan is a 21-year-old college student who has been playing guitar for five years. He has performed in three rock bands and loves sharing his passion for music with others. He plays an Epiphone Les Paul, a Fender acoustic and a 1962 Gibson acoustic. He is a graduate of Hopkins High School, and attended two years at Drake University in Iowa (where his favorite class was a freshman seminar on The Beatles), recently took classes at Normandale Community College (including the History of Jazz), and plans to transfer to a Twin Cities four-year college.

Logan B.