The piano is the symphony wrapped in a single instrument. It's arguably the most versatile instrument ever invented. It serves as a foundation of rock, country, jazz, blues and folk. And if you add in its keyboard brethren (e.g. organ, harpsichord, and electronic keyboards), it's in virtually every style of music.
At Madison Music Foundry we're pleased to offer a diverse selection of great instructors who, combined, can cover a wide gamut of the piano and keyboard repertoire.
We can offer lessons to any age and level at a time that's convenient for you.
Peter was born in northern Minnesota where he began playing piano at the age of five. He attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he received a bachelor's degree in Piano Performance. Since moving to Madison, Peter has had the opportunity to perform and tour with many groups, and currently he plays with several ensembles of varying styles. Along with being classically trained, Peter also has ample experience studying and performing jazz, blues, pop, world music, and other genres. Peter welcomes students of all ages and skill levels and enjoys helping students achieve their musical goals. As a teacher, he is patient and enthusiastic. While providing a strong foundation in theory and technique, he is able to cater to an individual's musical interests.
ELECTRIC BASS, GUITAR, PIANO
Josh Cohen is a multi-award winning six-string electric bassist, composer, session musician, and music educator who travels frequently throughout North America to perform and teach clinics/workshops including; Bass Boot Camp 2016 and 2019, Gruv Gear’s Clinic Series at Steve’s Music Toronto, Bass Break Live 2017, the 2019 Waupaca Bach Festival, Solo Bass Night VI and VII and more. He has garnered a lot of attention for his solo electric bass compositions and arrangements, and his arrangement of Herbie Hancock’s “Chameleon” was ranked as the number one bass video of 2015 by No Treble magazine.
Josh’s solo six-string electric bass performances, which can be heard on his debut 2014 album Out of the Bassment, use extended techniques to create the sound of an entire band with only one instrument, and without the aid of loop pedals. When listeners hear Josh playing for the first time, they are often surprised to find out that everything they are hearing is being created by one person in real-time.
Along with his performance career which includes opening up for highly regarded fellow bass players Stu Hamm, Michael Manring, and Kai Eckhardt, Cohen has been teaching private lessons for over a decade at multiple music schools. He believes in dedicating time to his students both in the lesson and outside of the classroom preparing personalized exercises, transcriptions and other learning materials. When students study bass, piano, guitar, theory and/or jazz improvisation with Josh they have a teacher who takes pride in the accomplishments of his students and constantly strives to provide them with the best instruction and opportunities possible. Many of his students have gone on to have professional careers in music (e.g. Ronald Poon - bassist for Canadian Ska band Adam's Mind) and/or have continued their studies at post-secondary institutions.
Laurie is a recent transplant to Madison, moving here from Virginia. Her childhood curiosity of language led her to study both English and vocal music at the undergraduate level. She received a Bachelors in English and Music from Pacific Union College in California. Her graduate work was done in Vocal Pedagogy at Westminster Choir College in Princeton.
Her teaching career has spanned the gamut of English, ESL, choir, and drama at the K-12 and community college levels. In addition to her teaching career, Laurie has served as Director of Music for two Episcopal church communities and has also been part of Campus Ministries and Liturgical teams as part of her teaching duties. She has conducted, sung, enjoyed various cuisines around the world, and is always looking for reasons to use her passport.
Laurie’s main teaching philosophy for any subject is that learning is a joyful process. To facilitate that belief, her teaching style is eclectic, humorous, and individualized. She believes in teaching each student in the best manner suited to them. She adapts each session to fit with the student’s goals and learning styles.
While Brendan makes his living these days as a musician and educator, his musical beginnings stuttered before taking off with rocket boots. Initially setting his guitar aside out of frustration, power chords and the promises of youthful punk rebellion were enough to rope a young, teenage Brendan back in. Teaching himself was great, but his desire to learn more about music beyond what he and his friends could figure out led him to study music at Edgewood College. While there, studied classical guitar under Nathan Wysock and jazz under Daniel Wallach before receiving his BS in Music in 2012.
In his tenure as a music instructor since 2004, Brendan has helped his students graduate to milestones ranging from playing in first bands, writing first songs, to even successfully auditioning for the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music. Brendan welcomes students of all ages and skill levels. He believes in not merely teaching students notes and songs, but also how to learn and apply their musical knowledge they an grow more well-rounded as musicians. He also recognizes that no single teaching approach works for everyone or even every song/concept for a single student, so he teaches in and encourages an open, friendly, and flexible style that best suits each student.
Brendan currently plays with award-winning Irish rock band The Kissers and Chicago's Last False Hope.
PIANO, HAMMOND ORGAN, GUITAR, ELECTRIC BASS, STRING BASS, MANDOLIN, UKULELE, ABLETON LIVE
Kevin Knapp is a freelance multi-instrumentalist, composer, and educator living in Madison, WI with over 30 years experience. Having grown up in a home full of educators and music, Kevin is passionate about music education. He focuses on keeping music fun and helping students explore music that excites them.
Kevin’s early accomplishments include acceptance to Interlochen Summer Arts Camp with an emphasis in composition and the Chopin Award for piano performance. Kevin graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Composition from University of Wisconsin, Madison. During his time at UW, he was awarded multiple scholarships, composed numerous pieces for performance by the UW Chior and UW Symphony Orchestra, and was awarded the UW Composition Prize.
These days, Kevin plays Hammond Organ and piano at multiple Madison area churches, provides dance accompaniment to the UW Dance Department, and teaches music privately. He also performs regularly with a variety of Madison-area ensembles with styles ranging from pop to classical.
VOICE, PIANO, SAXOPHONE, CLARINET, TRUMPET
Evan Mitchell has been teaching voice, piano, and instrument lessons to students of all ages, varieties, and styles for the past 9 years. He is a graduate of Luther College and McGill University, where he has advanced degrees in Music Performance. He has performed both classical and pop music throughout the United States and Canada as a recitalist, lead singer, chorister, accompanist, and director. He has taught at the college level, specializing in music history, performance, and literacy courses, as well has holding his own private studio. In addition to 19th century French opera and Cole Porter standards, Evan holds a deep interest for novelty and humorous songs- be sure to ask him what that means, and he will be sure to give you some great music to listen and sing to that will be sure to make you laugh!
Hailing from the small town of Ripon, WI, mezzo-soprano Eliza Morris is a recent graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, where she received her degree in Vocal Performance. At UWEC Eliza sang Mrs. Lovett in Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd and Donna Elvira in Mozart’s Don Giovanni. In addition, she was a concert soloist for Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Handel’s Messiah with the UWEC Symphonic Orchestra and Chorus. Eliza has also sung with the Minnesota Opera Chorus and was a Young Artist at the Bay View Music Festival, where she sang Marcellina in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro.
Apart from her classical singing, Eliza has sung with several jazz groups around the Chippewa Valley. She enjoys performing a variety of musical genres, and she encourages her voice and piano students to do the same. Eliza’s teaching style is patient and rooted in learning how to use healthy techniques while playing and singing. She helps her students understand why they are studying what they are studying—all while having fun, of course! One of Eliza’s goals is that her students will learn how to capture the unique character of each piece in their performance. She helps students achieve this by having them study musical style, technique, theory, ear training, sight-reading, text analysis, and diction. Eliza welcomes students of all musical backgrounds and structures each lesson specifically to the student.
Mary is a dedicated musician and instructor. From her earliest days, making music has played an important role in her life. She began playing piano and guitar as a child, and has experience accompanying various instruments, vocalists, as well as performing with several bands over the years. Fueled by her passion to teach, Mary considers it her life's purpose to nurture the musical talents within her students. Tailoring her approach to meet the unique needs of her students, she sets personalized goals and designs her own games and activities. Mary selects repertoire that both inspires and engages her students' musical tastes.
Having attained her bachelor’s degree in music, with a concentration in Piano Pedagogy, from the University of Wisconsin - La Crosse, Mary embarked on a teaching career spanning the states of Wisconsin, Tennessee, and Texas and has recently returned to Wisconsin. At the core of Mary's teaching philosophy is a desire to instill a profound and lasting love for music and the art of music-making. While she tailors her lessons to address individual needs and goals, Mary firmly believes that cultivating a healthy technique, a discerning musical ear, fluent music reading skills, and effective practice habits are essential components of every student's musical journey.
Greyson Sztuczko is a multi-instrumentalist and composer originally from Appleton, WI. What excites him the most is musical exploration - whether playing in bands, writing music for video games, or getting nerdy about music theory. His favorite thing about teaching is being able to answer students' questions and follow the paths they present.
He graduated from Lawrence University in 2015 having studied guitar, trombone, and theory/composition. He has been teaching since then on a total of 8 instruments. He has taught students of all ages and experience levels, including students with special needs. He plays a total of 20 instruments.
He is excited to open the path on your musical journey by combining his teaching and education with his diverse experiences. His musical background spans 16 years across most genrest and kinds of ensembles you can think of (including recording/producing music in/for many of these groups). He has also worked behind the scenes for a number of professional touring bands; the most notable is having toured as an all-around instrument technician for Dennis DeYoung of Styx. He has toured the midwest with his own band, The Goat Wizard, and they have also self-recorded several albums/compilations (the newest to be released this year). The mobile video games he scored as Greyson JS have received high reviews with downloads into the thousands, on top of the one-man-band progressive rock songs and guitar-soundscapes he has created. He has also worked in music instrument shops in management, sales, repair, and instruction.
He takes all of this experience and education to craft a wholly musical approach for every student's unique path. He tailors for everyone their own combination of instrument technique, theory, reading (staff and/or tab), performance and practicing approaches, writing (if desired), learning valuable lessons from the students' favorite songs, and most importantly, an emphasis on overall musicianship.
Eric has been playing music his entire life, first learning to play the drums. By 13, his passion for learning new instruments drove him to pick up the piano, alto sax, guitar, bass, and later voice by age 18. He is an avid self-taught artist deeply interested in recording, composing and arranging. Over the years, he has independently taught lessons on piano, drums and guitar. He has been multitrack recording in his home studio since 13, and has gigged in several groups, playing blues, funk, soul, pop, jazz and theatre on the drums, percussion, electric bass, and keys/vocals.
His diversity has garnered a wide knowledge of music theory and styles that translates well to being an educator. He graduated from UW Madison with a Bachelor's degree in engineering, playing in several UW orchestras along the way. His passion for sharing his music knowledge has brought him great satisfaction as a dedicated instructor with skills in teaching not only the fundamentals, but also jazz theory, ear training and improvisation. Eric is interested in catering to each of his student's desires that brought them to take lessons in the first place, developing unique lessons to further drive their passions to pursue their instrument.