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Guitar/Bass Instructors

Andy Pacheco

Andy is a music lover, at the age of 12 he moved to Canada from Bolivia, he started playing the electric guitar, followed by bass, keys and drums. Andy is currently studying Music Industry Arts at Fanshawe College and plans to continue his education in the University of Gloucestershire. His educational background includes learning guitar from BG Music Academy under the tutelage of Dragan Petrovic and he is a member of the System 12-Guitar Method by Ryan Roxie. In a performance aspect Andy has been a hired gun playing live shows with Soma Chhayya, Jammers Waffle House, Jazz Band and Our Lady of Mt Carmel. Andy loves producing up-and-coming artist, his first gig as a producer was to create Jennifer’s Cortez aka The Prof’s first EP. Andy has many hobbies, however, he is most passionate about the game of chess and playing tennis. His teaching goals include to share his passion towards music and motivate his students to make music and guitar a regular part of their lifestyle.

 Andy Cloutier

Born in Toronto, Andy Cloutier began musical studies on the guitar at the age of 5. After many years of study and performing, he entered the University of Western Ontario, where he completed a bachelor of music degree, with honours specialization in music theory and composition. He has played in masterclasses and studied with many world renowned guitarists, including Pepe Romero, Manuel Barrueco, David Russell, Roland Dyens, the Assad brothers, and many more. He currently teaches young musicians in the London area, and is Organist and music director at St. Anne’s Parish in St. Thomas, Ontario.

Peter Karle

Armed with an eclectic taste in music and the experience to match, Peter Karle is excited to teach all styles that come his way.  Throughout his undergraduate degree at the Don Wright Faculty of Music at Western University, Peter actively sought out diverse musical projects to hone his craft as a musician.  Along with private classical guitar with Robert Kubica, Peter served as guitarist and rhythm section leader with the Western University Jazz Ensemble.  Peter has also sought out conducting opportunities outside of the faculty to continue his spirit for giving music. Peter served at the 2014-25 Western Chamber Ensemble (orchestra division) as director under the tutelage of Alain Trudel.  He also served as producer/ music director/conductor for Theatre Western’s Xanadu(2013) and Rent(2014) and Into the Woods(2015).  Peter is currently performing as a leader/sideman  and session player with various session groups around London.

Girish Pokharel

Girish Pokharel, all the way from Nepal, is a guitar player and instructor with sound knowledge of guitar, bass and ukulele.  A soul devoted to playing music, every waking hour that has now become a supplement for survival.  Not a minute passes when his ears are not immersed in the sweet reverberations of impeccable taste.  His young career started with a guitar and a pocketful of dreams, understanding, exploring, and unfailing to collaborate along the way.  He performed extensively from local bars to big shows.  His styles vary from classic rock to heavy metal.  His imbuing talent as a guitar player should not drag attention from the fact that Girish is also a Mechanical Engineer.  His other interests include travel and soccer. Girish is working currently as a guitar instructor in the London area as well as, in past, instructing guitar at a reputed institution in Nepal.

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Drum Instructors

 Brian McHugh

Brian McHugh is a graduate of The Percussion Institute of Technology in Los Angeles, California, and The University of Western Ontario. Brian has maintained a busy recording and performing schedule over the years touring through Canada, U.S.A., Europe, and the Caribbean backing a variety of artists in many different styles. These artists include Fritz McIntyre (formerly of Simply Red), R&B great Grant Smith, Alan Frew (formerly of Glass Tiger), and many others. Brian is currently performing dates with his 8 piece band “Hollywood”.

 Rod O’Brien

Rod is an accomplished solo, chamber and orchestral musician currently finishing a bachelor of music with an honours in education from Western University specializing in percussion. For over a decade, Rod has been performing and teaching in both drum set and classical/concert band settings which include the drummer for the Western University Jazz Ensemble and being the principal timpanist of local ensembles, London Youth Symphony, London Concert Band, and Encore… The Concert Band. Rod also has a seasoned background in keyboard percussion, music theory and history. Notable teachers include Dr. Jill Ball, head professor of percussion performance at Western University and D’Arcy Gray, principal timpanist for London Symphonia and former principal timpanist of Orchestra London Canada.

Ulises Valenciano

Playing drums for over 20 years, Ulises is an enthusiastic musician who loves teaching and performing.  He studied jazz drumming at the Arts Center of San Luis Potosi and took private lessons with Karina Colis (Berklee College of Music), Manuel Cossio (Berklee College of Music), Samuel Martinez Herrera (Conservatory of Music Puerto Rico), Fernando Mendoza (performance artist) among others.  He also has a strong background in music theory and harmony.  Throughout his artistic career, Ulises has been part of a large number of musical groups ranging from jazz ensembles and orchestras to groups covering rock, pop, and reggae.  He has toured throughout Mexico, the United States, Spain and Italy and is currently a member of two classic rock bands in London Ontario.




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Piano Instructors

Tigran Saakyan

Tigran was born into an Armenian family in Moscow, Russia.  His piano journey began at the Tchaikovsky Academic Music College at the Moscow State Conservatory and Gnesins Russian Academy of Music.  Tigran was actively involved in Moscow’s concert life performing as a soloist and collaborative pianist.  In 2010-2012 he took the opportunity to perform at international piano competitions in Italy (Citta di Barletta, First Prize and Special Prize), France (Opus Yvelines), and Armenia (Renaissance, Second Prize).  In 2015, he went on to receive his Master of Music degree in piano performance from Brandon University.  In 2016, he was the winner of the MRMTA piano competition in Winnipeg.  In 2017, as winner of the Concerto Competition at Brandon University, Tigran performed the Rachmaninoff Second Concerto with the University Orchestra.  In 2018, Tigran entered the faculty at Music and Play Canada in Calgary, Alberta with a full-time teaching position.  While on faculty, he performed as a soloist and collaborative pianist in Canada, Russia, Mexico and the USA.  In 2019, Tigran was invited to the 15th Pender Harbour Chamber Music Festival in BC where he performed with Canada’s leading musicians.  Tigran became part of the Mountain View Festival in Calgary where he appeared in the series of concerts Isolation Point Project.  Currently Tigran is studying at Western University working on the Doctoral of Musical Arts degree in Piano Performance with Leslie Kinton.

Catalina Teican

Catalina Teican, a native of Romania, hold degrees from the National University of Music Bucharest (BA), Bowling Green State University, USA (MA, Artist Diploma), and the University of Iowa (ABD).  Catalina has performed in workshops and master classes with renowned pianists such as Gerard Fremy, Andre Watts, Garrick Ohlsson, and Daniel Shapiro, and she has participated in numereous national and international competitions and festivals as a solosit and chamber musician.  Before moving to London, Catalina lived in Cyprus for 14 years, where she maintained an active performing and teaching schedule and has been recognized for her achievements as a chamber musician and piano teacher.  She held teaching postions in the G. Menelaou School of Music and the Nicosia Music School, and for ten years, served as the accompanist for the Cyprus Young String Soloist. Catalina is currently pursuing a DMA degree in Collaborative Piano Western University, studying with Dr. Angela Park.

Jason Mile 

Jason Mile is a composer-pianist with a Bachelor’s in Music from Western University and is set to complete his Master’s in Music Composition from McGill University.  He has a keen interest in composition, improvisation, music pedagogy and piano technique.  Jason has experience teaching a variety of age groups, both privately and in classroom settings, through his work as a teacher’s assistant, private piano instructor and volunteer tutor.  He believes that it is essential to teach students not only how to play the piano, but also how music works, and so he incorporates music theory and improvisation into lessons whenever he can.  As a composer, Jason tries to keep branching out into new genres, writing classical, pop, rock, jazz and electronic music.  He has had his pieces performed in London, Toronto and Montreal and was awarded the SOCAN Young Composer’s Award for his piece “Southern Wind” for Flute and Electronics.

Nathanial Ninham 

Born and raised in London, Nathaniel is now a final year Piano Performance Major at Western University.  He currently studies under Dr. Brett Kingsbury for his Undergrad and after graduating in 2023 hopes to pursue a Masters in Performance or Collaborative Piano.  His biggest musical love is for his favourite composers, Bach and Chopin, but performs a wide variety of styles in both solo and collaborative works.  He is the 2021 recipient of the Larry and Susan Agranove Award and has performed in a variety of venues including weddings and as a collaborative pianist in various music festivals.  On the side he also enjoys Film Studies, gaming, and playing trumpet in the Western Symphonic Band.

Rachael Hunter 

Rachael Hunter is a pianist from Ottawa.  She recently completed a Master of Music in Literature and Performance at Western University under the instruction of Dr. Angela Park.  She hold a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from the University of Ottawa, as well as a Bachelor of Arts with a Minor in English, also completed at the University of Ottawa.  She collaborates regularly with singers and is especially passionate about Art Song.  Rachael has studied with a variety of well-respected teachers including Catherine Donkin, Frederic Lacroix, David Jalbert, and Aude Urbancic.  Rachael has competed multiple times in the Canadian Music Competition and in 2016 was a provincial finalist.  In the past she has attended a variety of summer programs, at which she has had the opportunity to work with teachers including Jimmy Briere, Valery Lloyd-Watts, and Sarah Beth-Briggs.  In addition to being a pianist, Rachael is also a soprano and in the past has taken voice lessons with both Cara Gilbertson and Samara Garfinkle.  This experience contributes a valuable perspective to her work with singers.  Rachael is also a passionate and experienced teacher, having taught for over ten years.  



Strings Instructors

 Julijana Tomicevic

Playing the violin for 18 years, Julijana has an active private studio of students ages 4 and up. She also assists at the El Sistema After School Music Program where she teaches elementary school children violin technique, posture, and music theory.  Julijana instructs and supports children with special needs and finds great joy and passion in doing so.    She has been a proud member of the London Youth Symphony (LYS) and is a current member of the London Community Orchestra (LCO) .

Jerry Ma

Playing the violin since he was 6 years old, Jerry has travelled extensively and has had been exposed to many teaching styles from private instructors throughout his career.  He is currently completing his Bachelor of Music with honours in performance under Professor Annette-Barbara Vogel.  Jerry has participated in the Magisterra Summer String Institute and also performed in Western’s Marista Brooks Concerto Competition. He enjoys teaching students of all ages and inspiring the next generation of performers. 

 Isaac Lee

Isaac Lee is currently is  pursuing a Bachelor Of Music in Cello Performance at Western University. He has been taught by Bruce Richardson and Julia MacGregor and is currently under the tutelage of Professor Thomas Wiebe. During his high school years, Isaac has participated in Kiwanis Music Festivals for 4 years. On top of that, he also conducted jazz bands and plays the saxophone.

Leah Bondy

Leah began learning violin at age three at the Suzuki Strings School of Guelph, where she grew her love of music through various ensemble works as well as weekly one-on-one instruction.  She realized very quickly that she thoroughly enjoyed teaching music and could often be found tutoring her younger siblings or teaching her friends a new song to sing.  Around the age of 13 Leah realized that she wanted more music in her life, and started joining musicals and taking voice lessons., as well as keeping up with her violin studies.  In 2019, Leah graduated with a Bachelor’s of music in Voice Performance from Western University. She continued to perform in various ensembles throughout school, including playing violin for Theatre Western.

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Voice Instructors

Olivia Power

Olivia Power, soprano, is currently completing her Bachelor of Music degree with Honours in Music Education at the University of Western Ontario.  Olivia graduated from Eastwood Collegiate Institutes’ Integrated Art Program in 2020 where she was a double major.  She has competed regionally in both classical and musical theatre categories in the Stratford Kiwanis Music Festival since 2020 and has been honoured with first place in the province in 2021.  Recently, Olivia has taken the stage in Theatre USC’s production of The Addams Family in March of 2023.  Notable awards include the Hutchinson Morrison Family Award for Most Outstanding Musical Theatre Performance (2022), the award for Senior Classical Voice (2021), and the Gordon Scott Memorial Award for Outstanding Performance (2021). She was recently recognized with the Willena Evans Award in Music (2023) from the Don Wright Faculty of Music at Western University.

Sarah Walsh

Sarah Walsh is a Master’s of Music student studying vocal performance at Western University. Sarah has been training vocally for nearly 12 years, during which she has gained vast experience performing classical voice, opera, and musical theatre. During her undergrad at Queen’s University, Sarah was a committed Teaching Assistant for Theory and Music History courses. She was also the Stage Manager and Costume Coordinator for the Queen’s Opera Ensemble. Notable awards include The Randall Marsh Award (2016), Kenneth G. Murray Volunteerism Award (2017), Don Wright Scholarship (2017), Queen’s Concerto/ Aria Competition 2nd place (2017) and 1st place (2018).

Danielle Cyr

Danielle Cyr. soprano, is a passionate performer and music instructor.  Offering lessons in voice/piano, her love of singing and music inspires as well as empowers students throughout their vocal and artistic development.  Originally from Vancouver, Danielle holds on MMus in Vocal Performance from the University of Alberta, an Artist Diploma from Western University, an Artist Diploma from the Vancouver Academy of Music, as well as a BA in Vocal Performance from Trinity Western University.  She has performed in various summer programs including La Musica Lirica in Novafeltria, Italy, AEDO:  Accademia Europea Dell’Opera in Lucca, Italy, COAA:  Canadian Operatic Arts Academy, and VISI:  Vancouver International Song Institute.  Past operatic roles include Fourth Maid in Strauss’ Elektra, La Badessa in Puccini’s Suor Angelica, Dido in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, Erste Dame in Mozart’s Die Zauberflote, and Miss Jessel in Britten’s The Turn of the Screw.

Felix Stueckmann

Felix Stueckmann graduated from the University of Western Ontario in 2020 with a Bachelors degree in Music Performance (honours voice), appearing in 4 of UWO’s opera productions during his time there.  A lifelong musician, he started piano at age 5 with Kathryn Tremills, and continued lessons until heading to university.  He joined the Bach’s Children Choir at age 9 and as a teenage began instructing young students in music theory and sight reading.  He eventually made the difficult choice to choose voice instead of piano as his principle at Western. He studied under the  Canadian baritone James Westman.  Felix is truly passionate about music and loves that he is able to pass that on to the next generation of singers and pianists.


Leah Bondy

In 2019, Leah graduated with a Bachelor’s of music in Voice Performance from Western University. Leah also began learning violin at age three at the Suzuki Strings School of Guelph, where she grew her love of music through various ensemble works as well as weekly one-on-one instruction.  She realized very quickly that she thoroughly enjoyed teaching music and could often be found tutoring her younger siblings or teaching her friends a new song to sing.  Around the age of 13 Leah realized that she wanted more music in her life, and started joining musicals and taking voice lessons., as well as keeping up with her violin studies.   She continued to perform in various ensembles throughout school, including playing violin for Theatre Western.

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Chelsie Boccongelle

Chelsie Boccongelle, mezzo-soprano, is a graduate from the University of Western Ontario’s Bachelor of Music program with honours in voice performance.  With a passion for performing, creating, and instructing, music has always been a large part of Chelsie’s life.  Chelsie’s passion for music was first uncovered at a young age after beginning piano lessons.  Her interest in music followed her throughout childhood as he continued to learn piano and cello.  In high school, Chelsie found herself immersed with music as she joined many music ensembles and began taking voice lessons.  Upon graduation, she achieved the highest academic standing in vocal music, and was the recipient of the Elgar Cup, an award for outstanding music proficiency. Throughout her undergraduate degree at Western, Chelsie was a member of multiple ensembles, and appeared in two opera performances and opera galas.  Chelsie enjoys sharing her love of music through teaching, as she creates a positive and encouraging studio environment to allow students to explore musical interests and creativity, while challenging them to grow and learn.  Chelsie is continuing her music education at Western University, where she is pursuing a Master’s in Music with honours in Literature and Performance.




Wind Instructors

Emily Rouse

Emily is a graduate of the Don Wright Faculty of Music with a Bachelor’s Degree in music with honours in Music Education.  Emily provides instruction for the alto, tenor, baritone and soprano saxophones, flute, clarinet, oboe and recorder.  Emily’s musical achievements have been performing with the National Youth Band of Canada for two years and performing as a semi-finalist in the Western University Concerto Competition.  Emily is enjoying her 7th year of teaching, playing saxophone with Encore the Concert Band, singing as a cantor at her local parish of St Peter’s Basilica, and leading Lost at C- a community jazz ensemble which she co-founded.


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