Teachers

Photo of Mila Axenova
Mila Axenova
Piano

Mila received her undergraduate education at the Belgorod State College of Art, S.A. Diagterev, (Russia), specializing in Piano and Pedagogy. She completed her Master Degree in Piano Performance and received highest marks with Distinction at the Saratov State Conservatory (Russia). She was also the winner of the Saratov Young Pianist Festivals. At Moscow State Open Pedagogic Institute, she studied with renowned pianist-composer Professor B.A. Petchersky.

Mila worked at the Central Music School in Moscow, one of the most prestigious schools in the world and is currently a member of the Ontario Registered Music Teachers’ Association.

As a proficient piano teacher, in Canada, Mila combines with Russian classical traditions and modern teaching techniques. She received a ‘Thank a Teacher Award’ and her students received Gold Medals from the Royal Conservatory of Music, amongst other awards from numerous music festivals including the Canadian Music Competitions and the Kiwanis Music Provincial Festivals.

RCM Gold Medalists:

Student received Gr 7 RCM Gold Medal in piano for the highest examination grades in Ontario

Student received Gr 9 RCM Gold Medal in piano for the highest examination grades in Ontario

Credentials: M.A.,B.A.

Photo of Fernando Baldassini
Fernando Baldassini
Theory

In 1992, Fernando Baldassini graduated from York University having studied compositions with James Tenney. During these year, he wrote many original compositions in all styles including a 10-minute background score used by a major advertising company. Fernando continued his studies in music education and graduated with a Bachelor degree in Education from the University of Toronto in 2002.

Over the years, Fenando’s love for teaching is reflected in the success of his students as many of them are currently on staff in music studies. He has students received First Class Honours with Distinction in ARCT theory courses.

Credentials: B.F.A.. B.A./EDU., ARCT

Photo of Mike Bodnarczuk (Intermediate Specialist – Guitar Designation)
Mike Bodnarczuk (Intermediate Specialist – Guitar Designation)
Guitar, Ukulele

Mike studied classical guitar at the Royal Conservatory of Music (RCM) in Toronto and has been teaching at Pro-Music since the school opened in 1998. He has achieved an Intermediate Specialist-Guitar Designation from the RCM. He enjoys teaching classical style (nylon string guitar), fingerstyle, acoustic (steel string guitar) and electric guitar to children, teenagers, adults and seniors.

Mike’s students have won RCM Regional Gold Medals (formerly Silver Medals), RCM First Class Honours with Distinction, RCM First Class Honours, First Gold Festival Awards and various scholarships.

RCM Silver & Gold Medalists:

2017 – Student received Gr.5 RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2017 – Student received Gr.2 RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2017 – Student received Gr.1 RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2016 – Student received Preparatory RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2015 – Student received Preparatory RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2015 – Student received Gr.3 RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2013 – Student received Preparatory RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2013 – Student received Gr.1 RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2013 – Student received Gr.3 RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2011 – Student received Gr.1 RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2011 – Student received Gr.2 RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2011 – Student received Gr.3 RCM Gold Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2010 – Student received Gr.1 RCM Silver Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2010 – Student received Gr.3 RCM Silver Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2009 – Student received Gr.2 RCM Silver Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2008 – Student received Gr.1 RCM Silver Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario

Photo of Gordon Chan
Gordon Chan
Drum

A well-known drummer with over 25 years of performance experience, Gordon has completed numerous recordings with the most popular singers in Hong Kong, such as Alan Tam, Anita Mui, Leslie Cheung, Jacky Cheung, Aaron Kwok, and Leon Lai. As an active performer in Hong Kong and North America, he also enjoys teaching students through different drumming styles.

Photo of Sophia Chan
Sophia Chan
Piano

Sophia Chan holds First Class Honours in ARCT Piano Performance and in the ARCT Teacher’s written exam. During her piano studies, she won several awards in music festivals, and was a regional representative at the 1998 O.R.M.T.A. Provincial Competition. Sophia’s continued interests in piano music teaching has drawn her to pursue a full-time career not related to, though enriched by, her Hons. B. Sc. and M.Sc. degrees from the University of Toronto. She has also obtained the ARCT in Piano Pedagogy with Jimmy Chan, having completed the program’s Elementary, Intermediate & Advanced Certificates.

Credentials: M.Sc., ARCT.

Photo of David Chang
David Chang
Piano

David finished his ARCT Performance with first class honours and won numerous Kiwanis awards along the way. He studied at York University, specializing in piano performance, piano collaboration and conducting. David is also one of the official collaborative pianists of York University, participating in recitals, classes, examinations and competitions. Every year, he collaborates with musicians of all ages for different regional, provincial and national competitions, such as Canadian Music Competition, Kiwanis Festival, Markham Music Festival, and more.

David has been teaching piano for more than a decade. Thanks to his enthusiastic, positive and supportive character, David’s students display a passion for music and demonstrate great technical and musical achievements. He believes that a passion for learning is the greatest motivator towards success.

Credentials: ARCT, B.A.Math

Photo of Clire Chen (Theory Assistant Teacher)
Clire Chen (Theory Assistant Teacher)
Theory

Clire holds an ARCT diploma in piano performance. She uses strategic methods when teaching to enhance students’ musical understanding, thereby helping them develop and gain confidence as a musician. Clire’s students have won various music competitions and received first class honours in theory exams. She has experience with students of all ages, as she is actively involved with children and adult choirs in Toronto. Clire also offers private lessons and tutoring classes for Level 5,6,7 and 8 Theory.

Credentials: ARCT

Photo of Connie Chen
Connie Chen
Violin

Connie received her Bachelor Degree of Arts from Xinghai Conservatory of Music in Guangzhou, China, majoring in violin performance. With over 30 years of teaching experience in both private and group lessons, her students achieved excellent results in RCM examinations. Committed to education and sharing her passion for music, Connie performs actively in orchestra as a violinist.

Credentials: B.A.

Photo of Herman Chen
Herman Chen
French Horn, Trumpet

Herman graduated from Xinghai Conservatory of Music in 1980 with a Bachelor of Arts degree. Being regarded as a French Horn Player of the highest proficiency in China, Herman was appointed as the Principal Horn in Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra.

After he has arrived Canada, in 2006, Herman participated in the Etobicoke Philharmonic Orchestra as a French Horn guest performer. Besides performing, he also teaches French horn and trumpet. His students frequently receive outstanding achievements: ARCT, Gold Medal Awards and First Class Honours from the Royal Conservatory of Music Examinations. Also, his student was accepted to the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra as a French Horn player.

RCM Silver & Gold Medalists:
2016 – Student received Gr.8 RCM Gold Medal in French Horn for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2017 – Student received Gr.10 RCM Gold Medal in French Horn for the highest exam grade in Ontario

Credentials: B.A.

Photo of Nancy Cheung
Nancy Cheung
Piano, Theory

Nancy graduated from the Faculty of Music at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and holds First-class Honors in Theory Research and Piano Performance. She is a proficient piano teacher in both Hong Kong and Canada with over 15 years of experience, and her students have won competitions in major music festivals such as Kiwanis and CMC and have achieved outstanding examination results. Nancy believes that music education adds value to one’s life and her teaching approach emphasizes the development of self-discipline, the ability to focus, and the appreciation of arts.

In addition to classical music, Nancy is also actively involved in contemporary church music, improvisation and accompaniment.

Nancy’s students received First Class Honours with distinction at RCM piano examination. And also numerous students received 100% in RCM Rudiments and History examination.

Credentials: B.Mus., LTCL.

Photo of Ron Cheung
Ron Cheung
Theory, Vocal

Ron graduated from University of Toronto with a Masters Degree in Choral Conducting and with a Bachelor Degree in Music Education from McMaster University. He was winner of the Elmer Iseler Conducting Fellowship Award and the Peter Sheehan Memorial Scholarship. Ron is the artistic director and founder of Voices and the Healey Willan Singers, as well as the conductor of the Yip’s Children Senior Choir (Canada). From 2001-2005, he conducted the Toronto Mendelssohn Youth Choir.

To learn more about Ron’s career and updated news, you can visit his website at http://www.ronkmcheung.com

Credentials: M.Mus., B.Ed.

Photo of Yucca Chiu
Yucca Chiu
Piano

Yucca holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Performance and Pedagogy, and an ATCL Performer’s Diploma in Pianoforte from Hong Kong Baptist University and Trinity College of Music in London respectively. She has privately taught piano for more than 20 years, and her students have achieved First Class Honours with Distinction at the Royal Conservatory of Music exams. Yucca’s performance experience includes conducting school and church choirs, accompanying ballet school exams classes, and performing as a soloist for various recitals and ceremonies. She has also studied master classes under notable pianists. Overall, Yucca is an experienced teacher well versed in both solo and collaborative performance.

Credentials: B.A.(Honours), ATCL

Photo of May Chown
May Chown
Piano

With many years of teach experience, May will work with your child to acquire excellent piano skills. She enjoys teaching young children, teenagers and adults of all ages. She is well qualified to make learning piano a happy and successful experience. She is a graduate from Queen’s University with a degree in Bachelor of Education. She has specialized training for early childhood piano with the Suzuki Method. She also has advanced training with the Royal Conservatory of Music. She has been a private piano teacher for over 30 years, with experience teaching in a school environment as well. Her students consistently do well in competitions, with some receiving musical scholarships. She enjoys making learning fun, and is looking forward to working with your children.

Credentials: B.A.,B.Ed.

Photo of Eva Chu
Eva Chu
Piano, Flute

Eva graduated from York University with a Bachelor Degree, major in flute and piano. For more than a decade of teaching experience, Eva’s students received outstanding awards and achievements from RCM Examinations, Kiwanis Music Festivals and Markham Music Festivals.

RCM Silver & Gold Medalists:
2009 – Student received Gr.4 RCM Silver Medal in flute for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2013 – Student received Gr.2 RCM Gold Medal in flute for the highest exam grade in Ontario

Credentials: B.A., ARCT in Piano and Flute

Photo of Jennifer Dang
Jennifer Dang
Music Adventure

Credentials: B.Sc.

Photo of Cherie Dong
Cherie Dong
Cello

As a cello teacher, Cherie holds a Master Degree of Music Performance at University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and a Bachelor of Music from Central Conservatory of Music, Beijing. She is currently a Doctor Degree in Music Performance candidate at University of Toronto Faculty of Music. Her major teachers include Shauna Rolston, Yehuda Hanani, Mingqing Yu and Guangquan Hu.

Cherie started teaching while she was studying at university. She taught private lessons in China and United States. She also held master classes at Jilin College of the Arts, coached string section in University of Toronto Symphony Orchestra.

Credentials: M. Mus., B. Mus.

Photo of Diana Goutkin
Diana Goutkin
Piano

Diana Goutkin graduated from the Moscow State Music College and completed her Bachelor of Arts in Moscow Pedagogical University. She developed her pedagogical approach in Canada through the study of various teaching methods such as Suzuki, Yamaha, and Carl Orff.

With over 15 years of teaching experience, Diana strives to help students build their technical ability and instil a variety of musical knowledge. Additionally, she emphasizes the importance of creativity and expresses a passion for playing music. Her students have participated in different competitions and Royal Conservatory of Music Examinations, and achieved outstanding results.

Credentials: B.A.

Photo of Angel He
Angel He
Piano, Music Adventure

Angel holds a Bachelors of Music degree with Honours from University of Toronto Faculty of Music, specializing in the Music Education program majoring in Piano. Angel’s interests in her undergraduate education remained in music education, especially piano pedagogy. Throughout her studies at the University of Toronto, Angel received several Faculty of Music In-Course Scholarships and Awards. She was the recipient of the Kenneth and Helen Bray Scholarship in Music Education in 2013, the Percy Faith Award in 2014, and the William Croombs Memorial Scholarship in 2015.

She is enthusiastic about providing music education to people of all ages. Angel strikes a balance between support and challenge in her teaching to engage her students. She wants to share her love for music with others by helping her students achieve artistic excellence, stimulating imagination and creativity, ultimately promoting a lifelong relationship with music and a culture of music appreciation in her students. Outside of lessons, you can find Angel accompanying on the organ at Chinese Martyrs Catholic Church.

Credentials: B.Mus.

Photo of Stephen Ho
Stephen Ho
Piano

Stephen is an experienced and well-rounded musician. He graduated from the Hong Kong Baptist University with a Bachelor of Arts in Theory/Composition, a Master of Arts in Music Education, and obtained the Licentiate Performer’s Diploma (LTCL) from the Trinity College of Music in London. A member of the Ontario Registered Music Teacher’s Association (ORMTA) and the Canadian Federation of Music Teachers’ Associations (CFMTA), Stephen has been involved in the music field for over 20 years and many of his students are now in the music profession. His philosophy is to teach according to each student’s individual strengths and weaknesses, recognizing that everyone has different abilities in different areas. Stephen helps his students develop and refine their strengths to aim at perfection, while encouraging and assisting them to overcome their weaknesses.

Apart from teaching private piano, Stephen was a full time professional teaching staff at the Music Office of the Hong Kong Government for years where he taught musicianship, aural and theory classes from elementary to advanced grades, and accompanied various musical instruments and choirs. He was the manager and accompanist of the Music Office Youth Choir and conductor of the Music Office Children’s Choir.

Credentials: B.A., M.A., LTCL

Photo of Helena Holl
Helena Holl
Vocal

Helena Holl, a dramatic soprano, began her vocal studies at Moscow’s Gnesina Musical Academy. She continued her musical education at the Moscow Lunacarsky University of Dramatic Arts, where is received her Master of Fine Arts degree. Following the completion of her studies, Ms. Holl was invited to perform in numerous productions with the Moscow Operetta Theatre, the Moscow Stanislavsky Opera and Ballet Theatre, and the famous Bolshoi Theatre.

In 1999 Ms. Holl moved to Canada and she was proud to make her North American debut in a Gala Benefit Concert at the Toronto Center for the Arts. Besides giving performances across North America, Ms Holl is also a passionate teacher. She prepares students for university and high school auditions, RCM exams and music competitions. Her students received numerous awards from festivals in Toronto. She teaches different styles like Broadway, popular, Disney, art songs, opera and operetta.

Credentials: MFA

Photo of Gladys Hung
Gladys Hung
Piano

Gladys taught piano since 1999, and has over 15 years of successful teaching experience.

RCM Silver & Gold Medalists:

2003 – Student received Gr 3 RCM Silver Medal in piano for the highest examination grades in Ontario

Photo of Sofia Ip
Sofia Ip
Piano

Sofia received her Bachelor of Arts (specialized Honors in Music) from York University. She also studied piano pedagogy with Mrs. Marina Geringas at the Royal Conservatory of Music. Miss Ip loves working with children of all ages, and she believes that though every child is born with talents, it is the teacher’s job to bring them out. Miss Ip likes to draw inspiration from different methods to make her music lessons interesting and fun for children. She has attended workshops including the Suzuki Piano Method summer program, Mrs. Margaret Huggett’s Orff workshop and Forrest Kinney’s workshop on piano improvisation.

Credentials: B.Mus.,Specialized Honours In Music

Photo of Jasleen Jalbay
Jasleen Jalbay
Vocal

Since the age of 4, Jasleen has studied in various music schools under the education discipline of the Alexander Technique. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of Waterloo with a specialization in Vocal Performance. Under the private instruction of Stephanie Kramer, Jasleen developed her own sound and tonality. She continually perfects her voice to this day with the best tools and techniques.

Jasleen was a member of the New York Choral Society under the direction of John Daly Goodwin, and a member of the New York City Master Chorale headed by Dr. Thea Kano. She has performed at Carnegie Hall and The Metropolitan Lincoln Centre. Jasleen has also worked with opera veterans Bryn Terfel, Susan Graham, Renee Fleming and vocalists from the New York City Opera. Aside from the classical world, she has passion for musical theatre and completed various stage works while living in New York City.

Though she is classically trained, Jasleen enjoys singing and teaching variety of styles and genres, including contemporary, pop/rock, musical theatre, country, and R&B.

Jasleen’s teaching approach emphasizes the 3 P’s: Practice, Patience, Perseverance! She actively engages the student to learn alongside the teacher; her lessons implement basic rudiments alongside vocal learning, such as ear training, scales, proper intonation and basic sight reading skills. Her lessons also cover performance and stage presence, voice projection, maintenance and control.

RCM Silver & Gold Medalists:

2011 – Student received Gr 1 RCM Gold Medal in vocal for the highest examination grades in Ontario

2014 – Student won 1st place at Provincial Finals Competition

Credentials: B.A.

Photo of Natalie Ko
Natalie Ko
Piano

Natalie Ko is passionate about teaching music. She holds a Bachelor of Education, a Teacher Certificate in Music, a Piano Advanced Certificate and a Flute Certificate from the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music. After teaching in a secondary school, she became Director of Music at an elementary school where she worked closely with music teachers to led school choirs, recorder bands, African and Chinese drum bands, piano groups, music festivals and competitions. She has led students and choirs to participate in and win several music festivals and competitions. In the past 10 years, she has served as worship pianist, choir accompanist and choir conductor in church. She is currently completing the Piano Pedagogy Program.

Natalie actively prepares students for piano and theory examinations. Her extensive experiences and teaching skills enhance her students’ interest in music performance. She participates in piano teaching seminars to gain new techniques in performance, composition and teaching, and applies them to both private and classroom settings.

Credentials: B.Ed, Teacher Cert in Music, Advanced Cert (ABRSM)

Photo of York Koo
York Koo
Drum

York received his Bachelor of Fine Arts Honours degree specializing in drumkit performance from York University where he studied intensively with Barry Romberg in Jazz Performance. Additionally, under the direction of Rick Lazar, York gained extensive knowledge and experience in a large variety of genres such as Brazilian, and Afro-Cuban, in addition to Pop and Rock.

As a teacher, York strives to help students build a strong musical foundation in which they can confidently apply to any genre. He values students’ musical interests, but also inspires them to widen their horizons, helping them develop their own sense of musicality and style.

In addition to teaching, York is actively performing across the GTA and is truly passionate about his music.

Credentials: B.F.A. (Honours)

Photo of Wayne Lai
Wayne Lai
Piano

Wayne Lai won numerous awards in piano competitions in Hong Kong and performed in Hong Kong City Hall when he was 10. His students have achieved excellent results in RCM examinations and in various music festivals. He is currently working towards his Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Music (ARCT) diploma for Teachers. He also studied piano pedagogy with renowned piano teacher Mrs. Marina Geringas at the Royal Conservatory of Music.

With over 10 years experience as church pianist and choir conductor, Wayne is also currently a band leader at church. He has lots of experiences in contemporary music arrangement and improvisation.

Wayne enjoys teaching kids and adults, not only to help them reach their academic goals, but also to cultivate their interest and appreciation for music.

Credentials: BBA.

Photo of Jaime Lau (Theory Assistant Teacher)
Jaime Lau (Theory Assistant Teacher)
Theory

Jaime began her piano studies at the age of 5 and was a student of Ms. Shuk Han Yu, an RCM Examiner. At Queen’s University, she studied the piano with Mr. Michel Szczesniak, Continuing Adjunct Lecturer in Piano (Keyboard).

As a young musician, Jaime actively involves in a variety of music groups. She was a member of the Toronto Children’s Chorus and has participated in school concert band as the flautist and clarinettist. She has also served as a singer and pianist in the worship team of her church.

As a graduate from Queen’s University with a Bachelor of Music, Jaime aims to use her knowledge in music theory and piano pedagogy to ignite the enthusiasm for music in her students.

Credentials: B.Mus.

Photo of Michelle Lau
Michelle Lau
Theory

Michelle holds a Masters degree in Piano Performance and Literature from Western University and is recipient of the Dr. Sherwood Fox Music Fellowship for excellence in performance. She has performed frequently as a solo and collaborative pianist in London, Toronto, and France. Recently, she was the accompanist of an all female choir, Les Choriste, which toured Ottawa.

She is also equally comfortable as a teacher and enjoys encouraging music in people of all ages and levels through her teaching. Michelle enjoys personalizing every lesson to suit each student’s personality, learning style, and goals. She is a strong believer that exploration and play are essential to effective learning. By encouraging critical thinking and problem solving, Michelle aims to cultivate a life long love for music in all her students.

Michelle’s interests and passions also lies in the Performing Arts Medicine, which lead her to create “theOpenScore”, an educational resource for musicians. It aims to provide the tools and knowledge to help musicians and music educators to perform at their best. She discusses topics such as methods in combatting performance anxiety, psychology, and playing with freedom.

Credentials: B. Mus Honours in Piano Performance, M.Mus Piano Performance and Literature

Photo of Simon Lau
Simon Lau
Violin

Born and raised in Hong Kong, Simon first discovered the joy of playing the violin at the age of 9. Under the tutelage of maestro Thomas Wang, Simon was considered a late starter by many, but quickly mastered the necessary skills and became one of the youngest members of the Hong Kong Youth Symphony Orchestra at the time. He subsequently became Concertmaster for the same orchestra and other ones as well.

At the age of 16, Simon organized his own chamber group “Bachanini” and won many awards at the Hong Kong School Music and Speech Festival. He was also one of the youngest violinists to have obtained the LRSM certification from the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music in England.

After arriving in Canada, he had studied under many master violinists, including the late professor Eugene Kash of the Royal Conservatory of Music. Simon has been a member of several music organizations in Canada, including the York Symphony Orchestra.

RCM Silver & Gold Medalists:

2013 – Student received Gr 1 RCM Gold Medal in violin for the highest examination grades in Ontario

Credentials: LRSM, B.Sc.

Photo of Francis Law
Francis Law
Er-Hu, Guitar, Ukulele

Francis studied classical and electric guitar at the age 6 in Hong Kong and won the Hong Kong Music Festival Classical Guitar Champion in 1984. He graduated from Hong Kong Baptist University with Bachelor (Hons) of Music (Major in Composition / Guitar) in 1992.

Francis joined TVB Hong Kong Television Broadcasts Ltd as Musical Director (1991 – 1995), composed and arranged music theme songs and underscore for TV productions / drama episode series. Additionally, he has collaborated with various renowned singers including Faye Wong, Leon Lai, Walkin Chau, Christopher Wong, Sammi Cheng, Hacken Lee, Shirley Kwan, Grasshopper, and Vivian Lai.

Francis is dedicated to music education. In Toronto, he was appointed by RCM to give official review and comment for the launch of RCM Guitar Syllabus (2004&2011) – Gr 1-8 Repertoire and Studies Album. He also participated in Music Technology Research Project held by RCM at Queen’s University and Concordia University. His students won RCM Regional Silver Medals in 2005, 2006 and 2007. Many of them had successfully admitted to Music College programs majoring in Guitar performance (with full scholarships), including University of Toronto and Humber College.

2005 – Student received Gr.5 RCM Silver Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2006 – Student received Gr.6 RCM Silver Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario
2007 – Student received Gr.7 RCM Silver Medal in guitar for the highest exam grade in Ontario

Credential: B.Mus.

Photo of Felicia Leo
Felicia Leo
Piano

Felicia graduated from Trinity College of London with a Teacher’s Diploma (LTCL) in 1986. She trained in Yamaha Music School for the junior music course (JMC), with a focus on building interest towards music for children between 4-6 years old.

Felicia is a dedicated, caring and patient teacher, able to motivate children to find interest and fun in music. She is experienced with preparing students for exams in the Royal Conservatory of Music, Trinity College of London, Royal School of London and AMED Australian Board.

Credentials: LTCL, ATCL.

Photo of Irene Leung
Irene Leung
Piano

Irene holds an ARCT Piano Teacher’s Diploma and Advanced Piano Pedagogy Certificate from the Royal Conservatory of Music (RCM). She has the Registered Music Teacher (RMT) designation and is a RCM certified specialist in piano and theory in all levels. She also received the Certificate of Teacher of Gold Medal Student from RCM.

She is an active member of the Ontario Registered Music Teachers Association (ORMTA), the Canadian Federation of Music Teachers (CFMTA), National Music Teachers Association (MTNA) in USA and a member of the Ontario College of Teachers (OCE). She served as Vice-President of ORMTA North York / York Region Branch and on ORMTA Provincial Council as GTA Zone Rep, Affiliate Members Liaison and Pedagogy Award Winner Convener. She received ORMTA Contributing to Teaching Award (Special Teacher Award).

She studied Piano Pedagogy with the Chief Examiners of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. She has experience in classical piano, collaborative piano, improvisation and keyboard harmony. She has been teaching over 20 years, teaching private and group lessons in piano, rudiments and music history. Her students include RCM Gold Medal winner and another student performed in a winners’ recital at Carnegie Hall.

RCM Silver & Gold Medalists:

2015 – Student received Preparatory RCM Gold Medal in Piano for the highest examination grades in Ontario.

Credentials: ARCT (Teacher), Advanced Piano Pedagogy Certificate, M.Sc., B.Ed., B.Sc., RMT, OCT

Photo of Regine Leung (Elementary Specialist – Piano)
Regine Leung (Elementary Specialist – Piano)
Piano

Regine received her Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Music (ARCT) diploma for Performance and she has also achieved an Elementary Specialist-Piano from the RCM. She has won numerous prizes and awards including the Kiwanis Music Festival and the Toronto Music Festival over the years. Serving as an accompanist and a music coordinator at church, Regine’s teaching method is creative. Her warmth motivates students to establish a long-lasting love for music. She is also working towards a second degree in cognitive psychology at the University of Toronto concentrating in human development and memory research; these studies allow Regine to focus on the benefit of music learning to the young child’s development. Her students are stimulated to enjoy piano performance and easily express themselves through the language of music.

Credentials: B.Com., ARCT.

 

Photo of Philip Li
Philip Li
Guitar

Philip has acquired decades of experience in various guitar playing styles (acoustic, electric, R & R, R & B, new wave, bass, classical and Flamenco). Philip started teaching since his mid-teens, and his playing style can be a mix of all of the above. He is also lead guitarist for a couple of bands in Toronto and performed in functions for renowned organizations such as the United Way, the Heart and Stroke Foundation and The Canadian Cancer Society.

Credentials: CFA.

Photo of Susan Lin
Susan Lin
Violin

As a nationally-recognized violinist, Susan graduated from Xinghai Conservatory of Music with high standing in 1983. She has performed in the Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra and also participated in several important performances, winning critical acclaim. She has been teaching violin for over 20 years.

Credentials: B.A.

Photo of Athena Lu
Athena Lu
Piano

Athena Lu has taught piano since the early 1980s. Formerly, she was a Yamaha music instructor and piano teacher at the Yamaha Music Foundation in Hong Kong. After moving to Toronto, she taught a variety of levels in different music schools. Her students continually achieve excellent results in RCM Examinations and music festivals.

Athena holds LTCL, the Piano Performer’s Certificate from the Trinity College of London; Teacher Diploma of the Yamaha Teacher Grade Examination; and Diploma of JMC Teacher from Yamaha Canada. She also graduated from the Ryerson Polytechnic University with a Bachelor Degree of Science.

Credentials: B.Sc, LTCL, Advanced Specialist – piano

Photo of Cindy Lu
Cindy Lu
Piano

Credentials: B.A.

Photo of Jennia Lutov
Jennia Lutov
Piano

Jennia received the Bachelor of Music Degree, majoring in Piano Performance, from the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance. She also holds a Diploma for Teacher of Music and Education from the Pedagogical College of St. Petersburg, Russia.

Since her arrival in Canada in 2000, she has been teaching piano to students of all grades. Jennia’s students have received First Class Honours from the RCM Examinations. Many have been awarded in such competitions as the Markham Music, the Arts Richmond Hill, Yip’s Music, and Kiwanis Music Festivals.

Credentials: B.Mus. Teacher’s Dip.

Photo of James Mak
James Mak
Guitar

James Mak completed his Bachelor of Arts in York University and studied the Jazz Music Program in Humber College. He won the Best Original Song Award and Overall Championship in the 2009 Parsons Original Songwriting Contest held in Hong Kong. His published works include the Twins Live in Concert 2010 theme song “Everyone Bounce” and Andy Hui’s “Man World.” He has obtained the Best Composer, Best Musical Arrangements and Overall Champion awards of the 2nd Canadian Chinese Songwriting Contest in 2009.

Apart from composition, James has up to 13 years of experience teaching guitar, and his students achieve excellent results in RCM exams. He has also performed guitar live for 15 years with famous artists, and cooperated with famous music producers Tony-A and Andrew Tuason in concerts throughout Canada and U.S.A.

James has also judged the 3rd and 5th Canadian Chinese Songwriting Contests and Toronto New Talent Singing Awards from 2010 to 2012.

Credentials: B.A.

Photo of Karin Mak
Karin Mak
Piano

Karin graduated from the Hong Kong Baptist University and majored in Music Education. She holds the Licentiate Diploma (L.T.C.L) in piano performance and Associate Diploma (A.T.C.L) in vocal performance from Trinity College of Music, London. Her background includes teaching music in day school, conducting in children’s choir and chamber music. She has also performed in piano recitals presented by Hong Kong Urban Council.

With over 30 years’ experience in piano teaching in Hong Kong and Canada, Karin takes students of all ages from beginner to advanced levels. She prepares them for RCM examinations with excellent results. Her students also achieve outstanding awards in various competitions.

Credentials: B.Ed., LTCL, ATCL.

Photo of Alana Ngo
Alana Ngo
Flute, Music Adventure, Piano

Alana is currently studying to complete her Bachelor degree in Music Education at the University of Toronto. She was the recipient of the David John Malysh Memorial Entrance Scholarship in Music Education in 2017. She graduated from the intensive arts program at Unionville High School with the Melody Adams award and was the valedictorian of her Arts Unionville class. She majors in flute, but also holds an ARCT diploma in piano.

Alana began her studies in piano at the age of 5, and the flute at the age of 10. She has developed a passion for teaching young children music and wants to share her love for music. She has studied with Dr. Kui Min on piano, and currently studies with Camille Watts, flutist and piccoloist of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, on flute. She has also performed with several groups, such as the Ontario Provincial Honour Band and the Denis Wick Canadian Wind Orchestra.

Outside of her musical studies, Alana also serves actively on her church’s worship team.

Credentials: ARCT

Photo of Lucy Nie
Lucy Nie
Piano

Lucy graduated from Shenyang Conservatory of Music and holds a Bachelor Degree of Music. She studied under renowned teachers like Xin Li, Dan Zhaoyi and Dr. Na Ni. She received the Advanced Teacher’s Certificate in 2007 from the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing and the Excellent Teacher’s Award from the 14th Blüthner Piano Open Competition, Hong Kong-Asia.

Lucy always encourages her students to participate in different music activities, like piano recitals and competitions. Her students received excellent results in piano examinations and have had opportunities to participate in Kawai, Toyama, and Kerman competitions that held in China, Hong Kong, and the States.

Credentials: B.Mus.

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Laura Pashanov
Piano

Laura received her Master Degree and Bachelor Degree from Niznyi Novgorod State Conservatory, Moscow Pedagogical Institute and Moscow Gnessin School of Music in Russia. With over 25 years of teaching experience, Laura’s students received Top Prize from the International World Piano Competition in Cincinnati; First Prize at the Cresendo International Music Competition with performance at the Carnegie Hall, New York; First Prize from the National Finals of Canadian Music Competition; Silver Tray Intermediate Piano Trophy Final Winner and Rose Bowl Senior Piano Trophy at the Toronto Kiwanis Music Festival; Best Festival Trophy at the Yip’s, Markham Music Festivals and also CCC Music Competition.

When studying her Master Degree in the Central Music School of Moscow State Conservatory, Laura had a good opportunity to be the assistant of Anna Danilovna Artobolevskaja, where she learned the outstanding and unique method of teaching young musicians.

Laura was also the co-writer of the Treatise of Piano Instruction “Pervaya Vstrecha s Musikoy” (First Meet with Music). This instruction book is still widely used and published today.

Credentials: M.A.,B.A.

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Ilia Shekhtihin
Piano

Ilia graduated from the Azerbaijan State Conservatorium of Music with a Diploma in Teaching, Chamber Music and Accompaniment as well as a Masters Degree in Performance.

Additionally, he has extensive solo, chamber music and teaching experience as Senior Lecturer in the Azerbaijan State College of Music and throughout Europe, Israel and Canada. His students are the top prizewinners of the Canadian Music Competition (CMC) and often pursue professional careers in music.

Credentials: M.Mus., Teacher’s Dip.

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Daniel Smith
Clarinet, Flute, Recorder, Saxophone

Daniel Smith studied under Robert Riseling at the University of Western Ontario during his high school years. After winning the Golden Reed Award in 1992 at Music Fest Canada (as the top clarinet player in the high school ranking), he received a full scholarship to attend Arizona State University and study under Robert Spring for a Bachelor of Music in Clarinet Performance. After, he worked at the University of Mephis as a Teaching assistant and completed his Masters in Clarinet Performance. While at Memphis, Daniel opened his own clarinet studio and played regularly in the professional musical community. Since leaving Memphis and returning to Canada in 1999, Daniel has played professionally and taught woodwinds at Pro-Music, helping students progress from making their first sounds to receiving scholarships at universities. Daniel is an accomplished player on clarinet, flute, and saxophone, and his students succeed in many endeavors including RCM exams, Arts York auditions and university entrances.

Credentials: M.Mus., B.Mus.

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Hasmig Surmélian
Piano, Violin

Mrs. Surmélian has a distinguished career as a concert pianist including Recitals, Solo Performances with Orchestra, Chamber Music Concerts and several recorded CD’s .

Holder of the highest awards and distinctions at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels, French Ministry of Culture and International Competitions her teaching experience spans over 25 years in Europe and with a twin vocation as a pianist and violinist she professes both instruments.

Mrs.Surmélian is RCM Registered Teacher and prepares her students to all levels of examinations up to ARCT and LRCM (Licentiate Diploma in piano performance).

She is fluent in both English and French.

Credentials:D.M.A., M.A., M.M.

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Teresa Tang
Piano, Vocal

Teresa Tang studied solo piano with celebrated pianist Marina Mdivani at McGill University, earning a Bachelor of Music. She later received her Master of Music in Conducting from the University of Toronto. She has received scholarships from the Bruno Walter Memorial Foundation (2010), University of Toronto (2007-2009), and Hong Kong Children’s Choir (2002).

Ms. Tang is the founder and music director of Mellow Singers. She has served as Assistant Conductor to the University of Toronto MacMillan Singers and the University Women’s Chorus, and held a conducting post with the Hong Kong Children’s Choir. She was guest conductor to the Hong Kong Catholic Diocesan Choir, and in 2000, had assisted in coaching a combined choir of 200 for the Catholic Diocesan (HK) in Handel’s Messiah. From 2003 to 2006, Ms. Tang was invited by the Pentecostal Lam Hon Kwong School (HK) to develop a high school choral education program with great success.

Credentials: M.Mus., LTCL, RMT.

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Dr. Nancy Tye
Piano

Nancy Tye holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy with top honours from the University of Oklahoma, one of the prestigious full-fledged pedagogy institutions in the United States. She studied under the tutelage of internationally-renowned pedagogues including Dr. E. L. Lancaster, Dr. Jane Magrath & Dr. Andrew Cooperstock. Dr.Tye has a diverse background as a performer, teacher, accompanist, adjudicator and workshop clinician in Canada, United States and Asia.

As a prominent pedagogue, Dr. Tye’s vast teaching experience spans over 25 years, having taught students of all ages and levels privately and at various colleges and institutions. Her students have frequently won scholarships and awards in music festivals and competitions and have been invited to perform in the Winners Gala Concerts. They have coveted exceptional results including First Class Honours with Distinction and Silver Medals in the RCM piano and theory examinations.

Dr. Tye is a member of the College of Examiners at the Royal Conservatory of Music and Elementary, Intermediate and Advanced Specialist in Piano, Music Theory and History. She was awarded the 2016 Steinway & Sons Top Music Teacher Award and Steinway Piano Gallery of Toronto Certificate of Appreciation.

Dr. Tye teaches in various genres comprising Classical, light classical, popular, contemporary, jazz, religious and improvisational styles. She is also a versatile performer in improvisation. She teaches comprehensive RCM theoretical subjects as well as general musicianship, music appreciation and piano literature.

Credentials: D.Mus.A., M.Mus., B.Mus., L.R.S.M

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Joe Varga
Cello, Flute, Recorder, Trombone, Trumpet, Violin

Joe began studying violin in 1970 and trumpet in 1972, following with piano lessons. He has a wide range of experiences in performing classical, jazz, rock, folk and various other musical styles, and as a composer and arranger. Joe was also involved in the musical products industry as a luthier, instrument technician and consultant for thirty years. Currently he teaches violin, brass and woodwind instruments in various styles, and prepares students for Royal Conservatory exams, university entrance (violin, trumpet) and auditions.

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Jackson Wong
Drum, Keyboard

Jackson received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Music from the University of Guelph and attended York University where he studied with Barry Elmes, Al Henderson and Frank Falco in Jazz performance. Jackson has extensive experience teaching both children and adults at all skill levels on drums, classical percussion and music theory in Canada and Hong Kong for the past 30 years. Besides teaching, Jackson is also an accomplished composer/arranger for film and TV commercials and has written over 800 soundtracks for advertising agencies in Hong Kong, Taiwan and China.

Credentials: B.A.

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Marco Wong
Clarinet, Saxophone

Marco Wong is currently studying saxophone performance at the University of Toronto. Growing up listening to classical albums, Marco has always had an ear for music. His first encounter with a musical instrument was at the age of 5, when he started the violin, later picking up the saxophone at the age of 12 and the guitar at 15.

Marco had previously studied with Daniel Smith and Joe Varga, current teachers at Pro Music, and currently studies with Dr. Wallace Halladay at U of T. He has played in several groups such as the Toronto Youth Wind Orchestra, the Ontario Provincial Honour Band, and the Canadian Wind Orchestra. He has also worked with many notable musicians including Maestro Colin Clarke, Robert Sheldon, Carolyn Barber, and John Mackey, to name a few. Some of his musical appearances include Orchestra Hall in Chicago, New York’s prestigious Carnegie Hall, and Massey Hall and the CBC’s Glenn Gould Studio, both in Toronto. He has also performed solos in various events such as political charity dinners, fundraisers, recitals, weddings, and even street performing a few times.

Marco enjoys spending time giving back to the community by volunteering for many charities and not-for-profit organizations. He has served once a week every winter for the last 5 years volunteering at Out of the Cold, a program for the homeless, with an aim to keep homeless people off the freezing streets of the Greater Toronto Area.

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Michelle Wong
Piano

Michelle studied piano under Mr. John Lee in Hong Kong. After moving to Canada, she studied with Dr. Janet Lopinski at the Royal Conservatory of Music. Michelle attended the ARCT full-time program at the conservatory for three years, obtaining many honors and distinctions. She also took extra courses associated with the Teacher’s Diploma, including Orff Pedagogy with Lois Birkenshaw-Fleming and Dalcroze Eurhythmics with Wendy Taxis. Michelle has taught piano for 15 years. She has a positive attitude and great passion for teaching students of all ages, encouraging them to enjoy performing and playing the piano. Her students participate in examinations and music festivals with positive outcomes. Currently studying piano pedagogy under Mrs. Marina Geringas, Michelle still strives for higher learning.

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Rachel Wu
Piano

Rachel is a both a solo pianist and an accompanist for singer, choir and chamber groups. She received a diploma from the National Taiwan Academy of Arts (majoring in piano), ARCT Associate Diplomas for Piano Teaching and Performance in Toronto, and a Certificate of Piano Superieur and Professional study in Performance and Chamber Music from Paris, France. She has also obtained certificates for the Kodaly, Orff, and Dalcroze pedagogical trainings in Toronto.

Rachel has been teaching piano and theory to children, teenagers and adults in Taiwan, France and Canada for over 20 years. Her students receive numerous prizes in Scarborough and Markham Music Competitions.

RCM Silver & Gold Medalists:

2017 – Student received Level 8 RCM Gold Medal in piano for the highest exam grade in Ontario

Credentials: B.Mus., ARCT.

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Regina Yeung
Piano

Regina graduated from the University of Toronto with a Bachelor degree in Business Administration. She began playing the piano at the age of 9, and has over 10 years of teaching experience. Regina enjoys teaching as her students’ accomplishments bring her a great sense of satisfaction.

Credentials: B.B.A., CMA.

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Shuk Han Yu
Piano, Theory

As a RCM examiner in piano, Shuk Han Yu maintains a private piano and theory studio, in addition to teaching at the Pro-Music Conservatory.

In past years, Ms. Yu served as pianist to the Toronto Chinese Christian Chorale. She also regularly accompanies singers and instrumentalists.

Currently Shuk Han Yu serves as music director at St John’s Presbyterian Church in Scarborough.

Credentials: ATCL (Teaching)
LTCL (Performance)
BA (Music)
MLS (Music Librarianship)

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Stephanie Yuen
Music Adventure

Stephanie received her Bachelor of Education degree from Western University specializing in Primary/Junior and Early Childhood Education, and is an Ontario Certified Teacher currently with the York Region District School Board. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree from Queen’s University where she specialized in Primary/Junior Music Education Pedagogy.

Throughout her career she has studied various approaches to music education such as the Kodály method, Dalcroze Eurhythmics, and Orff, two of which form the foundations for Pro-Music’s Music Adventure program. With both an Early Childhood Education specialty and a Primary/Junior teaching qualification, Stephanie has not only assisted with the Music Adventure program for the past 5 years, but has also implemented a music program for children ages 3 to 5 years old at a local day care centre, as well as taught Elementary School Music with various Ontario public school boards.

As a teacher, Stephanie strives to provide her students with authentic and meaningful learning experiences that foster enjoyment of music through active engagement in music making. Inspired by the work of distinguished music educator and ethnomusicologist, Patricia Shehan Campbell, Stephanie believes that all children are inherently musical and it is her job as a teacher to help nurture these experiences and further develop her students’ musical knowledge and skill. She believes that a strong music program supports students’ creative musical tendencies through singing, movement, and rhythmic and instrumental play while simultaneously fostering music appreciation and providing students with a strong foundation in music theory and ear-training.

Credentials: OCT., B.Ed., B.A.H.

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Jennifer Yung
Piano

Credentials: B.A.

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Mandy Zhao
Violin

Mandy received her Bachelor of Arts Degree from the Xinghai Conservatory of Music in Guangzhou, China, majoring in violin performance. After graduation, she was appointed as the Associate Concertmaster of the Pearl River Film Orchestra.

Later, Mandy moved to Canada and joined the National Academy Orchestra of Canada based in Hamilton, Ontario. Besides performing, Mandy is also an experienced violin teacher. Her students, ranging from beginner to ARCT levels, not only excel in Royal Conservatory Examinations but also appreciate music very much.

Credentials: B.A.