Sharon Burch – Artist Interview

By Brendan Lai-Tong

We recently had the opportunity to interview Sharon Burch, music teacher, clinician and author of the Freddie the Frog series.

Sharon Burch - Freddie the Frog

Sharon is a National Board Certified Teacher in Music, 
holds a Bachelor of Music Education Degree from Truman University in
 Kirksville, Missouri and a Masters’ Degree as a Professional Educator from
 Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa. In addition, she also holds a certification in 
piano instruction from the International Piano Teaching Foundation developed 
by Dr. Robert Pace. She has served as a vocal and piano instructor, taught preschool through 8th grade general music and directed junior high
and high school choirs. Sharon currently specializes in K-3 music.

Sharon found that the use of games, storytelling and puppetry in teaching was a highly effective way to communicate the concepts of music to her students. As a result, the Freddie the Frog series became a reality in 1995.

Sharon authored more “Sharon Burch – Artist Interview”

Mario Guarneri – Artist Interview

Mario Guarneri
Mario Guarneri

By Brendan Lai-Tong

We recently had the opportunity to interview Mario Guarneri, an active performer and teacher in the San Francisco Bay Area. Mario has had an impressive variety of musical experiences throughout his career as a trumpet player and as a result he is familiar with many different circles of the music community.

Mario’s career has encompassed everything from playing with Louis Armstrong at the age of 13 to fifteen seasons with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He has recorded solo albums on the Crystal and Nonesuch labels, played principal trumpet with the L.A. Chamber Orchestra for ten seasons, and appeared on over 300 T.V. and motion picture soundtracks, most notably as soloist on Godfather III. In addition, he has performed with a diverse list of creative musicians including Earl “Fatha” Hines, Frank Zappa, Sarah Vaughn, Cleo Lane, and Roger Kellaway.

Since his return to the Bay Area, where he was born and raised, he more “Mario Guarneri – Artist Interview”

Composer Spotlight: Carol Matz

Photo: Carol Matz
Carol Matz

By Nicole Elliot

Carol Matz is a well-known composer and arranger of piano music. With over 25 years of piano teaching experience, she currently serves as a Keyboard Editor for Alfred Music Publishing. Carol works from her home studio in South Florida and has a real passion forinspiring her students.  We caught up with Carol recently and asked her a few questions about her writing.

Which of your publications means the most to you, and why?

I would say my Famous & Fun series is the closest to my heart. These are books of supplementary piano arrangements in different categories (such as Christmas, Classics, Pop, Duets, etc.) written in levels from Early Elementary to Intermediate. Now, I may be a writer, but I’m a teacher first. For years, when I looked for supplementary arrangements for my students, I was frustrated by the lack of consistent leveling within each book. So with Famous & Fun, I’ve gone to great lengths to ensure that all the arrangements fall consistently within each level, and that teachers can easily use them along with any method they might be teaching from. My own students really have fun with these books, and enjoy playing pieces they know, along with their regular studies.

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