Mexico City native Ricardo Téllez began dancing when he was 12, shimmying his way through styles such as cumbia and guaracha. In 1995, he packed up his dancing shoes and moved to the Bay area, accelerating his salsa study not only by studying under Gabriel Romero, but also by trying out his footwork in clubs. Armed with a passion for dance, Ricardo founded RicaSalsa Dance Company in 1999 to share his love of the art. Today, he and dance partner Tianne Frias—with whom he placed third in the World Latin Dance Cup—teach private lessons and group classes that impart new and advanced dancers with the steps, partnership skills, and medallions filled with glowworms needed to light up the floor. By focusing on social dance skills and the ability to follow the rhythm, they help their students adapt easily to different songs and settings.
Imagine a group of nationally touring guitarists and accomplished recording artists all beneath one roof, and none of them are playing a single note. It may seem like a waste of talent, but these musicians aren’t at Guitar Cities to play—they’re there to teach. Each instructor has been selected by Guitar Cities's staff who vets their teachers for mastery of their respective instrument, patience, an aptitude for communication, and sensitivity when informing students that air guitar is not considered a real instrument.
These instructors welcome students of all ages for guitar, bass, ukulele, drum, and piano lessons. Guitar Cities offers private instruction, group classes, and “choose your song” lessons. The staff will provide the instruments and a stress-free environment where students can learn everything from basic chords to music theory in various genres. They even have professional studio equipment on which students can record, and offer the chance for students to take the stage at the House of Blues for Guitar Chicago’s Rockfete concert.
The skilled instructors at Inspire Music Center encourage students to express themselves through song during beginner, intermediate, and advanced lessons in a variety of instruments, including electric guitar, cello, French horn, and voice. Its ensemble of music graduates and seasoned performers uses its extensive musical knowledge and collection of 20 different instruments to teach aspiring musicians proper playing techniques, practice methods, theory, and how to topple glass houses with high notes. In addition to honing students' music-playing skills, instructors prep advanced pupils for professional auditions, instrumental competitions, and concerts.
When Joan Barnes founded Gymboree Play & Music in 1976, she envisioned a facility where parents and children could play together in a safe and age-appropriate environment. In the following decades, Gymboree Play & Music spread to more than 30 countries across the globe, helping youngsters from infants to 5 years old develop cognitive, physical, and social skills. The company's instructors lead classes such as Play & Learn, its flagship course, in which parents and kids move through a seven-level program filled with storytelling, play activities, and debates on the merits of sandwich crust. Talented staffers also prep youngsters for school and foster development in areas such as music, art, and sports. Throughout all classes, they make use of custom play equipment designed by acclaimed playground designer and seesaw-tamer Jay Beck.
Musically Minded Academy is a non-profit music school and community arts center located in Rockridge, CA.
Our core mission is to provide high quality music education, to host concerts and other arts-related education programs, and to act as a haven for musicians and music lovers in the greater East Bay Area.
In its four-decade history, Bananas at Large has provided production equipment and instruments to musical acts including the Grateful Dead, Carlos Santana, and Poison. At both the business' locations, soon-to-be superstars can stock up on their own equipment from well known and specialty brand names. Musicians just learning to tickle guitars till they cry melodies meet with dedicated teachers, many of whom studied music in school or have played professionally for years. In classes, the teachers draw upon their backgrounds in genres from funk to classical to lead 30- to 45-minute classes on instruments including the guitar, keyboard, and drums.
After finishing her classical education in Moscow, piano player Elena Orduyan switched from student to teacher. For more than a decade, she’s taught the ivory-tickling arts to youths and adults alike, sending students off to institutions like Juilliard with skills she helped them hone. She tailors each lesson to her individual students, creating customized lesson books for every player and curating her own lesson materials by mixing and matching texts from a variety of publishers and schools of thought. Her curricula extend past key-tapping: beginners also pick up the basics of music theory, and intermediate-level musicians learn to use music software. Orduyan even helps young kids along with color-coded markers and stickers. Never content to rest on her musical laurels, she also furthers her own education by attending annual music-teaching conferences and events.