Music Connection Teaching Staff

Brass

Vince Hendren

All Brass Instruments

$17.00

Hello, my name is Vince Hendren and I teach trumpet and French Horn. I have been teaching private lesson since 1991 and have been teaching at The Music Connection since 1999. My background is in Music Education and I have worked with students from elementary school through high school, college and adult students.

I have experience teaching and playing many styles of music including jazz, classical, school band and many more. I teach beginning to advanced trumpet and french horn and beginner to intermediate low brass

If you would like more info, please request a copy of my resume.


Sarah Meyerpeter

French Horn

$25.00

Sarah holds degrees in horn performance from University of California, Davis and California State University, Sacramento. She began teaching music in high school and has taught piano at The Music Store in Rockland Ca, with Musical Minds in San Diego, and currently is an adjunct faculty at Minnesota State University, Mankato. Besides teaching Sarah has played in many groups including the Light Opera Theatre of Sacramento, Camelia Symphony, Marine Band San Diego, Hornswoggle, the San Diego Concert Band, the Mankato Symphony and the Twin Cities Horn Club. She is currently working on her DMA in horn performance at the University of Minnesota. She is looking forward to working with beginning to advanced French Horn students at Music Connection. When she isn’t teaching or playing music, Sarah enjoys spending time with her husband and son, hanging out with her cats Stinker and Rubble, and baking cookies.

Guitar

Randy Gildersleeve

Guitar/Bass/Banjo/Uke/Dobro/Mandolin

$24.00

Hello, my name is Randy Gildersleeve. I like music, and I like people. That pretty much sums up my life and career, and teaching is the crossroads of these primary interests. I play and teach a variety of fretted instruments, including acoustic and electric guitar, bass, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, and dobro. I approach each student with the assumption that some spark provided the inspiration to play. Perhaps it was a recording, a favorite artist, family member, or some other life experience. My job is to fan that spark into a flame that will carry the enjoyment of music throughout your life. As quickly as possible, I get the student playing music they enjoy, and will want to practice. Building practice time into your life is the key to gaining the skills needed to fully enjoy music. Sure, we'll study scales, technique, chords, notation (including tablature), and as I get to know you, we'll incorporate whatever books, recordings, and other material needed to get where you want to go. In addition, all of my students have the opportunity to perform in front of an audience at my student concerts, or join my monthly bluegrass jam or weekly ukulele group.

Here's the thumbnail version of my story: I grew up on a farm in SW Wisconsin and was inspired to play by the Beatles and my mother's record collection. As a music major in college, I studied classical guitar and played in jazz ensembles. Outside of school, I played in rock bands and became very interested in recording music. My teaching career began, and over the decades I've coached many who have become professional musicians, and many others for whom music is a lasting interest. I've performed in all kinds of music events and ensembles and currently play with several groups. I own GilderSound recording studio and have the pleasure of helping musicians capture their vision.

So what about you? Sign up and let's play some music!

Martin Hinrichs

Guitar/Bass/Uke

$22.00

I began taking lessons when I was 19 and fell in love with playing music. I started with the bass and then expanded to the guitar and ukulele. I have been teaching for over 15 years. Additionally, I:

  • Earned an AAS in Guitar Performance from McNally Smith College of Music.

  • Have experience teaching all age levels and styles of music.

  • Specialize in the Rote Method for teaching young children, which provides a structured program.

If you choose to study with me you can expect:

  • A customized training plan to fit your goals.

  • To focus on the style(s) of music you prefer

  • To work hard and have fun.

Lisa Kane

Guitar

$20.00

Hi, my name is Lisa and I love teaching people how to play guitar. I’m especially fond of teaching beginners and children and believe it is my role to support their musical journey while being mindful of various learning styles-often times checking in with students and setting personal playing goals as we go.

I’ve been performing live for three decades and am currently working on my fifth full-length CD. This means I’m very familiar with the process of recording in fancy studios and creating, mixing, and mastering demos in GarageBand. GB and navigating it is something I’m extremely skilled at and I enjoy teaching home recording as well. Most music worlds today center around small scale, bedroom, direct input, digital recording--which is fantastic for those of us who love to layer sounds and create new projects.

I do extremely well with aspiring songwriters and guitarists who want to play around a campfire or write their first batch of instrumentals. I’m apt in theory and have a good ear for picking up chords and transcribing solos as well. A student can literally pull up a playlist and we can listen to their favorite song and I will figure out how to play it and get the student to play along.

http://www.lisakane.com


Tim Lyles

Guitar/Bass

$20.00

Hello, I’m Tim Lyles, a guitarist, bassist, and instructor in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. I’ve been teaching at the Music Connection for over 30 years and also full-time at McNally Smith College of Music for over a decade. I studied at Berklee College of Music in Boston and earned my undergraduate degree from the University of Memphis in Music and Media. I recently completed my master’s degree in Guitar Performance from McNally Smith. My career has encompassed producing/arranging/engineering and performing in recording studio environments, work in television and film production, and a decade of touring the U.S. with a 14-piece horn band. I love a broad range of guitar styles— from roots music and rock to jazz and classical.

Learning to play the guitar should be fun and enjoyable, although sometimes it’s challenging and requires patience and diligence. I strive to provide balance in my lessons between fun and work— both are needed to make you a better guitarist. I structure my lessons around a Rhythm of five areas of guitar study: Chords, Scales, Repertoire, Improvisation and Note Literacy. My goal is to help you become a better guitarist in an enjoyable and enriching setting— to patiently help you understand and acquire the necessary skills. Few things in life are more fulfilling than experiencing a sense of accomplishment and improvement on the coolest of all musical instruments— the guitar! I hope you enjoy the same. Good Journeys!​

Karl Swartz

Guitar

$24.00

I've been a musician my entire life, have taught guitar for over thirty seven years at various music stores and music schools(The Rymer School Of Music and Music Tech) and are currently teaching at The Music Connection(Forest Lake, MN) and at Groth Music(Bloomington, MN). My emphasis in teaching is helping the student develop - good technique, their ability in reading music and guitar tablature, ear training and soloing. I also teach students how to compose their own songs, help them understand the music industry as a business(intermediate level students and higher) and the most important thing – to just enjoy playing the guitar!

*Please note my minimum age for a student is seven years old.

My primary styles of guitar playing/teaching are in Rock, Blues and Acoustic with secondary styles in Classical, Jazz and Country. My formal training in music includes 4 years of classical guitar, 2 years private guitar lessons(rock, blues, jazz), 5 years of music theory, music composition, music business and music history studies at Century College, The University of MN and at The Professional Guitar School of Minneapolis (previously, The McNally-Smith Institute of Music). Professionally, I've played for 43 years with many different bands, covering just about every style of music and have done national touring with the bands “Wild Eyes” and the show band “Dazzler”. I currently play with the national act - “Free Fallin”(Tom Petty tribute band) and “The Minstrel's Bazaar”(My original music band).

www.fretsnets@gmail.com

www.karlswartz.net

Percussion

Anthony Bloch

Percussion

$25.00

Anthony Bloch graduated from UW-River Falls with a Percussion Performance degree in 2006 where he studied under the direction of David Milne, Patti Cudd, Craig Hara, and J. Michael Roy. He has also studied drum set with Phil Hey (University of Minnesota), David Stanoch (McNally Smith), Steve Goold (Owl City and Sara Bareilles) and Peter O'Gorman (see below). Anthony has performed with the Minnesota Orchestra, Bob Mintzer, Sweden's Lars Jansson and opened up for saxophone legend Ernie Watts. Anthony was an active performer and educator throughout the Twin Cities and Wisconsin from 2004 - 2012. From 2012 - 2015, Anthony worked for Norwegian Cruise Line in Hawaii as a drummer, band leader and music director where he performed regularly with RCA recording artist Toby Beau, songwriter Steve Williams (writer of number 1 hits for George Strait and Craig Morgan), and legendary Hawaiian producer/arranger Kata Maduli (produced and arranged "Over The Rainbow" by IZ). Anthony has been teaching private studio lessons since 2004. He has been a faculty member at the renowned Shell Lake Arts Center since 2007. He is proficient in several styles of drumming including Rock, Jazz, Afro-Cuban, Blues, Funk, Bluegrass, etc. Anthony teaches trap set and orchestral percussion such as xylophone, marimba, and timpani. Anthony performs and teaches full time and resides in Minneapolis, MN.

Peter O'Gorman

Percussion

$26.00

My name is Peter OʼGorman and I teach drum set and percussion lessons at studios in Forest Lake and White Bear Lake.

I teach students at all stages of musical development. I work with each student to custom design a program that facilitates their learning style while addressing their musical needs and aspirations. My students learn good practice habits, how to approach challenging material, how to prepare for auditions, recitals and concerts, and how to develop their own creative voice. My overarching goal is for students to discover the joy of playing music while developing a high degree of musicianship.

I've been teaching for over 20 years. My students regularly become section leaders in their school band program, garner superior ratings at solo andensemble contests, earn positions in All-State Symphonic Band, All-State Orchestra, & All-State Jazz Band, and go on to receive Bachelors, Masters, and Doctorate degrees in music.

In addition to teaching private lessons, I am also an American Composers Forum Certified Teaching Artist. As a McKnight Composer Fellow, I have lead percussion and composition workshops throughout Minnesota and beyond.

I am also the author of two drum set method books that have received critical praise from Modern Drummer Magazine, Percussive Notes magazine and numerous top pros.

As a professional musician, I have performed at theaters and concert halls throughout the U.S. and abroad. In the Twin Cities, I have performed at the Guthrie Theater, the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, the Walker Art Center, OʼShaughnessy Auditorium, Ted Mann Concert Hall, Northrop Auditorium, the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts, as well as numerous colleges, churches, and other venues.

Piano

Lehi Gertz

Piano

$25.00

Lehi Gertz holds a BA in Music from the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point and a Graduate Teaching license from MSU Mankato. She owned a private teaching studio for almost ten years before becoming an orchestra director at Winona Senior High School last year. She has worked with students of all ages and abilities. In addition to teaching, she has been a fiddler in numerous bands and genres including folk, country, old time, Irish and Gypsy Jazz. She has also served as an accompanist for middle school choirs.

This year marks her first year teaching orchestra in the Forest Lake Public Schools. She is passionate about teaching kids and adults to play stringed instruments and piano.

Sarah Meyerpeter

Piano

$25.00

Sarah holds degrees in horn performance from University of California, Davis and California State University, Sacramento. She began teaching music in high school and has taught piano at The Music Store in Rockland, Ca, with Musical Minds in San Diego, and currently is an adjunct faculty at Minnesota State University, Mankato. Besides teaching Sarah has played in many groups including the Light Opera Theatre of Sacramento, Camelia Symphony, Marine Band San Diego, Hornswoggle, the San Diego Concert Band, the Mankato Symphony and the Twin Cities Horn Club. She is currently working on her DMA in horn performance at the University of Minnesota. She is looking forward to working with beginning to intermediate piano students at Music Connection. When she isn’t teaching or playing music, Sarah enjoys spending time with her husband and son, hanging out with her cats Stinker and Rubble, and baking cookies.


Signe Reistad

Piano/Voice

$20.00

Signe Reistad has trained intensively in music for most of her life. She began her musical training in elementary school with piano lessons, and then began studying trumpet and voice privately at Valley City State University throughout junior high and high school. While in high school, she won several awards for voice, trumpet and piano competitions.

Signe went on to study voice at St. Olaf College and graduated with a B.M. in Vocal Performance. During her college career, she took trumpet, voice and piano lessons. She was in 2 choirs and the Norseman Band. She took part in several Lyric Opera productions at St. Olaf as well.

Signe has run SVR studios(her private music studio) for 4 years and has experience teaching students of all ages. On top of teaching, she is a freelance singer. She currently sings with an a cappella group based out of the twin cities called De Cantus. In her free time, Signe enjoys volunteering at Northwoods animal shelter and spending time with her horses, cats and husband.

Strings

Chris Chelgren

Viola/Violin

$20.00

Chris Chelgren has been teaching viola, violin, and piano since 1999 and before that was a sales consultant for the Music Connection. When he’s not teaching he does recording work and freelances around the Twin Cities and beyond. He graduated from St. Olaf College in 1996 with a Bachelor of Music in Theory and Composition and is currently principal viola of the Roseville String Ensemble, for which he also serves on the board of directors. He’s also a member of the St. Andrew’s Orchestra in Mahtomedi and the Gilbert and Sullivan Very Light Opera Company orchestra in Minneapolis. He’s also recently played with the Mississippi Valley Orchestra and in the past with the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra. When not doing any of those things he finds time to go for long bike rides, backpack in the woods, or sit down with a good board game. He currently resides in Hugo with his wife Karen and 3 rambunctious cats.

Laura Harada

Violin

$25.00

My name is Laura Harada and I teach violin in Forest Lake as well as Minneapolis. I have been playing the violin for most of my life and enjoy teaching students of all levels, from age 5 on up. As a young student I was fortunate to have excellent teachers who guided me well and who emphasized solid technique and musicality. I played in youth symphonies and string quartets from the age of 9 through high school, after which I attended Oberlin Conservatory. I have played professionally since the age of 15.

While most of my formal education is in classical music, I have since broadened my education and scope of interest to include world music of many kinds, most especially the music of the Middle East and Brazil and jazz. I have special training in classical Arabic music. I like to share my interests with my students and feel it is important to expose students to traditions around the world while also ensuring a solid base of technique and proficiency. I emphasize creative thinking in problem solving and enjoy the dialogue that evolves between teacher and student. I currently perform locally with the Modern Spark Trio, Amwaaj, and Music Mundial. As a free lance musician, I have most recently performed for the Black Label Movement dance company’s production of Wreck at the Guthrie. My resume is available upon request.

Teddy Schumacher

Cello

$25.00

Teddy is a lifelong cellist, having begun lessons when he was six. Hailing from Sioux Falls, Teddy’s studies have taken him to the Interlochen Arts Academy, Arizona State University, Stony Brook University, and most recently the University of Minnesota, where he completed his master’s degree in cello performance. He has played in the South Dakota Symphony since 2010 and has also played in the Buffalo Community Orchestra and appeared as guest principal cellist in the Kenwood Symphony Orchestra. He is happy to call Minneapolis his new home and looks forward to many fruitful collaborations.

Lehi Gertz

Violin/Fiddle/Viola/Cello/Mandolin

$25.00

Lehi Gertz holds a BA in Music from the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point and a Graduate Teaching license from MSU Mankato. She owned a private teaching studio for almost ten years before becoming an orchestra director at Winona Senior High School last year. She has worked with students of all ages and abilities. In addition to teaching, she has been a fiddler in numerous bands and genres including folk, country, old time, Irish and Gypsy Jazz. She has also served as an accompanist for middle school choirs.

This year marks her first year teaching orchestra in the Forest Lake Public Schools. She is passionate about teaching kids and adults to play stringed instruments and piano.

Kelby Strobel

Violin and Viola

$25.00

Kelby Strobel has been playing violin for 19 years. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Violin Performance from the University of Minnesota, where she studied with professors Mark Bjork and Sally O'Reilly. Kelby has also studied violin with some of the best violinists in the Midwest, including Minnesota Orchestra members Cecelia Belcher, and Aaron Janse.

Ms. Strobel performs as a solo, chamber, and orchestral musician across the Midwest. Kelby was Principal 2nd Violin of the Mississippi Valley Orchestra from 2016 to 2018. She joined The Mankato Symphony Orchestra in 2017, and currently holds a prominent first violin section position there. Her 2018-2019 season also included performances with The South Dakota Symphony, La Crosse Symphony, St. Cloud Symphony, and many others. She performs on a 2010 David Folland violin, made in Northfield, MN.

Kelby is a member of the American String Teachers Association, and runs her own teaching studio in Minneapolis. She joined the Music Connection teaching faculty in the spring of 2016. Kelby accepts students of all ages and ability levels, including adult students. She adapts her teaching to fit each student’s learning style, and strives to maintain a positive learning environment. She believes that with the proper instruction and dedication, learning to play the violin/viola can be incredibly inspirational and rewarding.

Voice

Heidi Leeson

Voice

$25.00

I've been a voice teacher for over twenty years, both here at the Music Connection, and before that, at Malone University in Canton, Ohio. I have degrees in classical voice performance from The University of Illinois (B.M.), Ohio University (M.M.) and The University of Texas at Austin (Doctor of Musical Arts), but I love and appreciate a wide variety of music and singing styles. My passion is vocal technique. After years of working with hundred of students, both male and female, experienced and inexperienced, I've developed a system of teaching technique that combines exploration with a specific set of vocal skills. The physical and mental tricks we practice and perfect together can be applied to whatever kind of music the student enjoys singing. Half of each lesson is devoted to technical work, and the other half to songs. My students have ranged in age from 9 to 70. Very young singers (ages 5-8) are advised to take piano lessons before they study voice, but I'm happy to do a few lessons to offer feedback and guidance. I love to work with anyone who loves to sing. Where there's a will, there's a way!

Woodwinds

Nathan Hanson

Clarinet/Oboe/Sax/Bassoon

$35.00

I've been teaching saxophone and clarinet for most of my life! My bachelors and masters degrees are in Music Education. I've taught beginners and advanced students from elementary school to retirement age. If you want to get a head start on school band, or any other reason you want to play, I can help. I've been a performing artist for as long as I've been teaching, and I've got lots of personal experience with jazz, rock, classical and other kinds of music. Ask for my resume if you're interested in details.

Milinda Nitti

Flute/Piccolo

$25.00

Milinda began teaching in 2006, and holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Flute Performance from the University of Minnesota, where she studied with Immanuel Davis. She also studied in Vienna, Austria for 6 months with Barbara Gisler-Haase and Marie-Celine Labbe. She currently performs with the Linden Hills Chamber Orchestra in Minneapolis, MN.


Milinda creates lessons around individual student’s interests, needs, and personal goals. She incorporates music history, music listening, music theory, and overall wellness into lessons. She works with students on producing great tone, learning scales, and intonation. Sight-reading and ensemble work is also incorporated (flute duets and trios). She strives to foster a life-long passion for music, community, and learning with each student.