"The technical situation in the classrooms is pretty remarkable. There’s not a live ensemble in most of the beginning classes that I teach, but there is a computer software program. The students tap along with the computer in a way that simulates performing on instruments, but it’s realistic enough that the student who’s conducting gets an experience that is relatively close to actual conducting without having the pressure of having a real ensemble there. And they can go on to conduct a live orchestra every week, which is not the case in a number of major conducting programs across the country. It’s really special. And the faculty is very strong, and they’re all active professionals. Berklee is really a very cool place to learn how to conduct."
"I was the first mandolin student at Berklee in 2003. There were no mandolin teachers here at the time I applied. But I wanted to come to Berklee to have someone show me all the ways I should be thinking about music—even if I ended up studying with a saxophone teacher. You can learn a lot from any instrument. That attitude is present in the String Department, where you find a mandolin player studying with a fiddle player or a cello player."
"I love exploring new styles with students and helping them find new ways to use their instrument. I also am keenly aware of the vocal mechanism itself. The human voice is by far the most complicated instrument you can ever play, and you can’t even look at it or put your hands on it. I try to help students understand the anatomy of their voice, not just what the different parts are, but how they move and how they create sound. I like to keep up with the science of that, because it contributes enormously to vocal longevity and health."
“Some people might say I’m very ‘old school.’ I really am big on having a good attitude and respecting others. These ensembles are the ultimate team sport. Performers are responsible to each other. Work ethic and teamwork are crucial to being a successful professional musician. If you are not reliable, it doesn’t matter how talented you are. I try to build a sense of family and responsibility with each ensemble. When band mates are committed to each other, it really shows both in the rehearsal room and on stage in performance.”
"I teach 'the art of singing' from the vantage point of a long career as a performer, recording artist, and teacher. What a joy all three facets have been! This extraordinary universal language of song is truly a marvel of creative forces merging in the human voice, via tonal colors, rhythm, text, and the soul of a singer. My aim is to assist students in cultivating these unique forces in their voices and to help them dip down into the depths of their emotional expression. This beautiful language of music defies all boundaries, and meeting each student at their current juncture is an exciting challenge."