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Learn Today, Play Tomorrow®

Music Teachers

Music Notes Academy music teachers are award-winning, university and conservatory degreed performers, music teachers and college professors. Music Notes teachers are committed to teaching through a comprehensive and sequential curriculum centered around each student’s age, learning styles, goals, interests and aspirations. Most Music Notes teachers have master degrees.


Sean, a Music Notes Academy ’12 award-winning music teacher, holds a bachelor’s degree in Music Education from The College of NJ and a master’s degree in Music Scoring and Composition from Academy of Art University in San Francisco, Ca. An experienced teacher of woodwinds, brass, strings and piano, Sean is additionally a conductor and composer of merit with seven completed symphonies. His arrangements have been performed by schools, community orchestras, chamber ensembles, soloists and independent films. Sean has been a music teacher at Music Notes Academy since ’09 and created Music Notes’ TiedNotes classes.

Stephen, a Music Notes Academy ’12 Award-Winning Music Teacher, has a B.A. in Music from Hamilton College and a Master of Arts in Teaching from Montclair State University. A performer on piano and guitar, Stephen is also well versed in music theory, composition, bass guitar, music technology and recording. Teaching music for over a decade, Stephen passionately believes that appreciating and understanding music is essential to leading a well-rounded life. Stephen has been a Music Notes teacher since ’11 and leads our Instrumental Rock Bands, LittleNotes Early Childhood Music Program and Music Notes In Your School.

Ms. Elana specializes in all woodwind instruments, including flutes, clarinets, saxophones, oboe and bassoon. She holds a masters degree in multiple woodwind performance from New Jersey City University and an undergraduate degree in music education from Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University. Elana has taught music and private music lessons for over ten years. She is a licensed music teacher and has taught in public elementary and middle schools in Middlesex and Monmouth Counties. Elana is a guest clinician and teaches workshops for woodwind instrumentalist students at local high schools. In addition to teaching, Elana maintains a performance career as an in-demand woodwind doubler. A classically trained musician, Elana has experience performing in local orchestras and chamber groups. She also performs jazz and contemporary music. Elana joined Music Notes Academy in the Summer of ’19.

Livia is a classically trained pianist, organist and mezzo-soprano. Born in Budapest, Hungary her family immigrated to the United States in 1990. They owned and operated a music school and chamber ensembles in Bloomsburg, Pa. Livia began learning piano at the age of five, with Agnes Lakatos, former pianist at the Katona Jozsef Theatre in Kecskemet, Hungary. Then continued studies with James Outhit and Philip Cho at Temple University. Livia is a church organist and a teacher of music, specifically piano, in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Livia is one of our ’12 award-winning NJSBDC Music Notes Academy teachers and has been a featured adjudicator at our MAMTG Student Music Festival.

Mr. Eric, a graduate of Rutgers University’s Mason Gross School of the Arts, has his Bachelors degree in viola performance. Eric studied under Lark Quartet violist, Kathryn Lockwood and Philadelphia Orchestra principal violist CJ Chang. Eric has several years of music teaching experience along with preparing strings and piano students for auditions, chamber groups and performances. Eric teaches viola, violin, cello and piano.

Sasha recently finished her Bachelor’s degree at The New School of Jazz and Contemporary Music, where she studied with jazz legends Matt Wilson, Stefon Harris, Linda Oh, and Andrew Cyrille. Notable performances have been with musicians such as drummer-composer and Macarthur Genius Grant Winner Tyshawn Sorey, trumpet player Nicholas Payton, jazz vibraphonist Warren Wolf, and drummer and UNT Jazz Director Quincy Davis. Sasha is an endorsing artist for Vater Drumsticks and Marimba One and is a faculty member at the MalletLab percussion intensive, where she gives masterclasses and clinics.

Spencer, has been playing piano for over seventeen years. He holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Montclair State University and his master’s degree from Kean University, with studies in Jazz within Western Europe. Additionally, a player of percussion for over eight years, Spencer performed with Montclair’s Symphonic Band for four years. Spencer was one of several new teachers interviewing right as Covid-19 began in February ’20. We are delighted to have Spencer join Music Notes, teaching piano.

I enjoy teaching because I like motivating students in succeeding and accomplishing their goals… Playing piano has afforded me different opportunities and has helped me academically. I enjoy playing and it allows me to express myself artistically along with expanding my love for music. 


Ms. Alicia is an accomplished dramatic soprano and innovative teacher of singing. Alicia received her Bachelor’s of Music in Vocal Performance, summa cum laude and with University Honors from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia and her Master’s of Music in Vocal Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. Alicia attended the Alexander Technique School of New England and graduated from the American Center for the Alexander Technique in ’00.

A voice teacher for over 25 years, sharing her extensive knowledge with humor and compassion, Alicia has taught music at several institutions specializing in voice and piano, helping singers of all genres refine their singing techniques. Alicia has written extensively on vocal technique, how singers can benefit from the Alexander Technique and have a healthy approach towards singing.

Award-Winning soprano, Ms. Britania has become a fixture in the Mid-Atlantic arts community. She frequently performed recitals throughout the region, with credits including the title role in Suor Angelica with Opera Guadalajara, Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors at Wesley College, Hero in Beatrice et Benedict with The Shakespeare Opera Theatre and Barbarina in La Nozze di Figaro with Center City Opera Theatre. Recent concert performances include Handel’s Messiah and Mozart’s Requiem with the Delaware Choral Society, and arias and art songs in concert with First State Brass, among others. Ms. Britania was a ’15 Delaware Division of the Arts Fellow and has enjoyed teaching all styles of music to students of all ages and levels for over 15 years, including teaching at Wesley College.

Dave is currently pursuing a Master’s in the Art of Teaching and music certification at Montclair State University’s Graduate School. As a teacher of music, David has been teaching students in the private lesson format since 2010.

As a performer on trumpet and guitar, David has played in a variety of bands and ensembles over the last decade and has had the opportunity of touring around the country and performing at music festivals like South By Southwest in 2019.

David also composes his own original music and collaborates with contemporary musicians regularly. In addition to his preparation to be a school music teacher, David studies jazz trumpet privately to work towards his goal of becoming an efficient improviser.

Mr. Justin is a classically trained pianist. He has earned a Bachelor’s of Music in piano from Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ. Justin has a passion for music and plays various styles which includes classical, pop, jazz and gospel. He enjoys improvisation and music composition. Justin has performed with the Bernards Ensemble at the Arc Angel Gala in Bridgewater, NJ. He also performed and accompanied many Westminster Choirs and performed as lead pianist at a Piano Concerto Concert with the Westminster Community Orchestra. Justin is the accompanist where he leads the music ministry at multiple church services. He is also a music consultant for The Arc of Somerset County. Justin’s experience as a piano instructor began in 2019 where he taught individuals on a one-to-one basis. Justin’s student roster has included individuals with various disabilities which included down syndrome and autism. He understands that people learn differently and he learns from every person he teaches. Justin actively continues to volunteer his services in the community.

Since ’99, Brandon Kurzawa has prepared students for music auditions, exams, assessments, performances and concerts. Brandon studied at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, has a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Rutgers University and a Masters of Arts in Education, specializing in curriculum, instruction and computer education. Recording credits include drums on Ansel Matthews’ Raised From The Dust and drums and percussion on John Sonntag’s ’06 release Chasing Stars. Brandon recorded and toured nationally with rock bands and singer-songwriters. An active performer from ’98 through ’09, Brandon performed with solo artists, trios and quartets, wedding bands and rock bands throughout the New York metropolitan area. Publications include “Teaching Music, Teaching Percussion: A Balance in Curriculum” and “Teaching Music” Music Majors, Choose Education” which were published in Tempo Magazine in ’06 and ’07. A Vic Firth, Inc. educational endorser, Shine Custom Drums sponsored artist and Remo Health Rhythms Drum Circle facilitator, Brandon instructed music at Rutgers University, Kean University and was an adjunct professor of audio engineering and music production at Gibbs College where he taught college classes in Apple’s GarageBand, Reason, Logic Studio, and Pro Tools to audio engineering and music technology majors. Brandon gladly accepted Music Notes Academy’s NJSBDC Success Award in 2012 on behalf of Music Notes Academy’s staff of dedicated teachers.

The Music Notes difference is its teachers. Since Covid-19, with the implementation and requirement of online teaching, I’ve been inviting select former and celebrated Music Notes teachers to return. Throughout the years, we’ve had the pleasure of teaching alongside some great, dedicated music teachers. Some teachers relocated out of New Jersey or too far away from East Brunswick. Now with our online platform a teacher’s location doesn’t matter. The teacher does matter though.

-Brandon / Founder

About Music Notes

Est. 2000

Music Notes Academy is a 2012 award-winning NJSBDC community music school. Online music lessons and instruction – available for young children, adolescents and adults – are tailored towards each student within our music curriculum.

Music Notes’ curricular approach to teaching includes music reading and theory, musicianship skills, performance techniques, repertoire and songs. Students receive comprehensive music instruction from degreed and experienced music teachers. We offer structure and flexibility for our students which offers a great balance in music education.

Music Notes Academy is committed to the musical growth and development of each student. With the encouragement and support from teachers and parents, students can expand and improve their musical appreciation, comprehension of musical knowledge and performance skills while being challenged to reach their fullest potential.

Drum Lessons

Learn to play classical snare drum, drum set and percussion.

Guitar & Bass Guitar Lessons

Learn to play acoustic, classical, electric and bass guitar. Ukulele too.

Piano Lessons

Learn to play piano and keyboard. Young children through adults.

Voice & Musical Theater

Learn to sing. Improve vocal abilities while learning popular songs. Musical Theater too.

Strings Lessons

Learn to play violin, viola, cello and upright string bass.

Woodwinds Lessons

Learn to play clarinet, flute, piccolo and saxophone.

Brass Lessons

Learn to play trumpet, trombone and tuba.

Music Theory Lessons

Learn music theory, harmony, arranging, composition and songwriting. College auditions and exam prep. College tutoring for music majors and minors.

Music Notes through the years

Music Notes students have performed in concerts, recitals, assessments and exams. Students have won 1st Place at Festivals. Students have continued their musical journey collegiately, attending colleges and universities with scholarships.

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