Our Music Teaching Artists

Percussion, Ensembles

Brian Shankar Adler

Piano

Jeff Auger

Piano, Violin

Taylor Blankenship

Voice

Maria L. Boudreau

guitar, ukulele, music technology

Jason Crigler

guitar/bass, composition, songwriting, music theory

Jim Dozet

Saxophone, Flute, Clarinet

Allie Edge

piano, composition/music theory, Jazz Institute

Mike Effenberger

Piano

Kathy Fink

Josh Gagnon Teaching Artist
Trombone

Josh Gagnon

saxophone, composition, music theory

Russ Grazier

Tiffany Hanson
Voice, Piano

Tiffany Hanson

guitar, electric bass

Bryan Bergeron Killough

trumpet, piano, composition

Chris Klaxton

saxophone, piano, clarinet, jazz studies, music theory

Eric Klaxton

saxophone

Matt Langley

clarinet, piano, music therapy

Virginia Macdonald, MA, MT-BC

Piano

Adam MacDougall

violin, viola, cello

Lynne White McMahon

piano, percussion, drumming, composition

Jonny Peiffer

Guitar

Keith Perry

guitar, electric bass, ukulele, recording technology

Nick Phaneuf

upright bass, mandolin, guitar, fiddle, ukulele

Steve Roy

drums, drum set

Jim Rudolf

Cello

Hannah Soren

flute

Kibbie Straw

Voice

Crystal Taber

upright bass

Nate Therrien

drums, drum set

Mike Walsh

Strings

Sally Wituszynski

Percussion, Ensembles

Brian Shankar Adler

Brian Shankar Adler is a prolific drummer, percussionist, and composer who grew up in the mountains of upstate New York. With a background in Indian music, a conservatory training and over fifteen years of professional experience in New York City, Adler eats, sleeps and breathes rhythm. Adler has worked with: Bob Brookmeyer, Bomba de Tiempo, Bombay Rickey, Shelia Jordan, LA Opera, Kate McGarry, Guillermo Klein, and Ray Vega. He has been featured in Modern Drummer Magazine, DownBeat, Jazz Times, and NPR’s New Sounds. His music video, “Mantra” won best music video at Transcinema International Film Festival in Peru and at the 2020 Independent Music Awards. Adler has toured four continents, has been recorded on more than 30 albums and currently leads Human Time Machine.

Education: BM, Jazz Performance, New England Conservatory

Piano

Jeff Auger

Pianist, composer, and educator, Jeff has performed professionally for 25 years regionally, nationally, and internationally. In addition to a multi-year engagement at Boston’s famed Top of the Hub, he has performed and recorded with The Ritz, Clark Terry, Frank Wess, and Nick Brignola. Jeffrey can be heard regularly around Portsmouth and the Seacoast. He has taught jazz piano at the University of Southern Maine at Gorham and has been involved with the Corpus Christi Parish as a choir accompanist.

Education:B.A. in Music Education, Notre Dame College of Manchester, NH

Piano, Violin

Taylor Blankenship

Taylor is from Worcester, MA. She moved to the seacoast of New Hampshire to study piano, strings, and English at the University of New Hampshire. During her time at UNH she was very fortunate to study piano and piano pedagogy with Arlene and Chris Kies. Arlene’s philosophy in piano pedagogy allowed Taylor to teach part-time in the Dover community while attending school, honing her skills as an educator. Taylor is able to provide her students with opportunities to perform in community events and spaces. While at UNH she was also fortunate to privately study viola and string teaching with Mimi Bravar, as well as Wituszynski and Larry Veal, founders of UNH String Project. Taylor is freelance musician and teacher in Exeter, NH, her home studio in the Seacoast community. As a teacher, Taylor hopes to not only provide her students with a solid foundation in music but also give them the resources to independently connect to music, art, culture, and knowledge.

Education::University of New Hampshire

Voice

Maria L. Boudreau

Mezzo-soprano Maria L. Boudreau has been an active member of the New England music and theatre scene from a young age. A native of Dover, NH, she was involved in youth theater at Seacoast Repertory Theatre as a young girl and was a member of the New Hampshire Youth Choir throughout high school. She attended Plymouth State University, where she had the privilege of being a member of both the University Chorale and University Chamber Singers under the direction of Dr. Dan Perkins. With the Chamber Singers, she toured and sang in Chicago, Milwaukee, Chile, Southern California, Baltimore, and Washington D.C. She also had the privilege to sing at Carnegie Hall under Dr. Perkin’s direction. Maria performed many great works with both university groups, including Mozart’s Requiem, Bach’s Magnificat, both settings of Mozart’s Regina Coeli, and countless other works, with solos in each. She has experience teaching classical, music theater, and jazz singing styles and is thrilled to share her love of singing with her students at PMAC.

Education:B.A. in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy, Plymouth State University

guitar, ukulele, music technology

Jason Crigler

Jason has been teaching music professionally for over 20 years. While living in New York City, Jason worked with numerous artists including John Cale, Marshall Crenshaw, Linda Thompson, and Teddy Thompson. Jason has also performed with Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, and Martha Wainwright. As a composer Jason has created music for a number of films, including the feature-length documentaries Ashtanga, NY and Tending Fires as well as the film short Grand Street. Jason is on the faculty at Berwick Academy in South Berwick, ME.

Education:B.A., Connecticut College; music studies at Berklee College of Music

guitar/bass, composition, songwriting, music theory

Jim Dozet

Jim attended the University of New Hampshire, where he studied under David Newsam. After graduating from UNH, he studied privately with renowned Berklee professor Bruce Bartlett (Billy Cobham, Chick Corea, John Blackwell) in Boston, MA. He has taught locally for the past 20 years both privately and at local music stores. Jim has taught master classes in funk guitar styles at S.Y.M.S (Summer Youth Music School) and makes regular appearances at UNH giving lectures and running clinics for the guitar students there. In addition to guitar studies Jim also offers lessons in music theory, composition, and songwriting. While maintaining a busy teaching schedule, Jim performs regularly, both locally and regionally with various groups. In his 20 years as a professional/performing musician Jim has performed various styles ranging from funk, blues, jazz, hip hop, rock, and acoustic/singer-songwriter. Jim has performed at the Bonnaroo music festival and opened for acts such as Soulive, George Clinton, Robert Randolph, and The Roots. He lives in South Berwick, ME with his wife Alex. Learn more about Jim at his website JimDozetMusic.com and Jim’s Public Facebook Page, Jim Dozet Music

Education:B.M. in Jazz Performance, University of New Hampshire

Saxophone, Flute, Clarinet

Allie Edge

Allie is from North Attleboro, MA. Moving to the Seacoast NH to study Music Education, Saxophone and Clarinet at the University of New Hampshire. Allie has been teaching woodwinds privately since 2010, and in public school since 2012. She is currently the band, chorus and music teacher at Barnstead Elementary School.
Allie is an active member in a seacoast bands such as, Soulation, OURBIGBAND, Seacoast Big Band, and SheFunk.

piano, composition/music theory, Jazz Institute

Mike Effenberger

Mike Effenberger is a recording and performing artist who has been living in the Seacoast since 2007. He received the Young Beacon in Jazz award from New School University in New York City, from which he graduated in 2005. Mike plays throughout New England with a variety of bands including Jazzputin and the Jug Skunks, the secular gospel choir Rock My Soul, OURBIGBAND, Dan Blakeslee, and many others, along with leading Weird Turn Pro in playing his original music. He plays nationally with Soggy Po’ Boys and internationally with Bing and Ruth. He appears on countless recordings, from independent releases to larger labels, including RVNG International and 4AD, and is also active as a producer.

Education:B.M. in Jazz Performance, New School University

Piano

Kathy Fink

Kathy Fink has been seen at many area theaters as both pianist and musical director. She is very excited to join the faculty at PMAC! She teaches all levels and styles of piano, co-leads the Fourth Street Jazz Choir, serves as choral instructor at the Cocheco Academy of the Arts (CATA), and is the Director of Music for St Thomas’ Episcopal Church in Dover. She has a BA in piano performance & MA in music history from UNH. Her accompanying career began at the age of 9 for the 4th grade chorus in Leeds, England. She accompanied first full-length musical at age 15. Kathy has worked at Prescott Park Arts Festival, the Rochester Opera House, the Rep, The Bell Center, Hackmatack Playhouse, the Palace Theatre, Garrison Players, Governor’s Inn, Players Ring, & more! You may recognize her from the local band Crossfire, which she played in from 1979-1988. Kathy lives in Dover with her husband Greg, and her beagle Cookie who offers moral support!

Education:UNH, BA in piano performance; MA in music history

Josh Gagnon Teaching Artist

Trombone

Josh Gagnon

Josh Gagnon is a trombonist, educator, and creative professional based in Boston, Massachusetts. Through advanced technical study and many years of private study on the instrument, Josh has been able to pursue playing in various groups as a student at the University of New Hampshire and the Eastman School of Music, as well as many professional settings.

In addition to his classical training, Josh developed a passion for jazz while surrounded by the rich improvised music scene in New England.  His interests were given direction and focus by acclaimed teachers such as Chris Oberholtzer, Kendall Moore, Mark Shilansky, Mark Kellogg, and Dante Luciani. At the University of New Hampshire, Josh’s jazz studies were driven by performing ensembles such as UNH’s 3 o’Clock Jazz Band, and several jazz combos. Josh maintains an active calendar of professional jazz and commercial performances throughout the East Coast.

saxophone, composition, music theory

Russ Grazier

Co-Founder of PMAC, Executive Director – Composer and saxophonist Russ Grazier, Jr. is a native of Portsmouth, NH and has taught saxophone, composition, and music theory for over 25 years. In 2002 he co-founded PMAC with his wife Katie and mentor Wendell Purrington. In the years leading up to the creation of PMAC he taught at some of the most prestigious music schools in the country including Boston Conservatory, Roosevelt University (Chicago), the University of Chicago College, the New England Conservatory Preparatory School, and the Merit School of Music (Chicago). Russ has been composer-in-residence with Chicago’s CUBE Ensemble, and his music has been performed by the Contemporary Chamber Players of Chicago, the West End String Quartet, CUBE, Voices from the Heart, Duo Fujin, and many other ensembles and soloists. Russ was named 2016 Arts Advocate of the Year by New Hampshire Citizens for the Arts and is a past president of Art-Speak, the cultural commission for the city of Portsmouth, where he lives with his wife, Katie, and their two sons, Max and Jake.

Education:B.M. in Composition (with Saxophone Concentration), Boston Conservatory; M.M. in Composition, Peabody Conservatory; Graduate Composition Studies at the University of Chicago

Tiffany Hanson

Voice, Piano

Tiffany Hanson

Tiffany G. Hanson is a University of Central Florida graduate with a Bachelor of Music, emphasis in vocal performance. While still pursuing her degree, she began teaching voice and piano privately and in the classroom at Seminole State College as well as teaching a weekly Exploratory Music class, creatively introducing children to new sounds and instruments. After receiving her degree, Tiffany established a large studio in Juneau, Alaska where she also taught voice and piano for the University of Alaska Southeast. Tiffany moved to Portland and started her Master of Music degree at Portland State University in vocal performance. She taught voice and piano through her studio, Music Amore, and with CHORDination. In Virginia, where she taught through her company, Music Amore, for two years in Roanoke. In Virginia Beach, she performed solos weekly with Wycliff Presbyterian Church as the paid soprano section leader. There, she led the Music Makers program teaching groups of children Orff instruments and organizing three performances a year. In addition, she was the vocal and piano instructor for Great Neck Community Music School. She was also happy to go back and work with little ones at All Saints’ Day Preschool as a music teacher where she created a 12-week after school piano program for 4 to 5-year-olds ending in a fun recital.

Her Awards/Competitions include the Ruth Dobson Award for Outstanding Operatic Achievement and Classical Singer Convention Finalist, Regional Graduate Division
In the news, “Tiffany Hanson delivered a strong performance in PSU’s Dialogues des Carmélites as Madame Lidoine, as acclaimed by Oregon Music News.”

Other performances to date include L’elisir d’amore(Adina) with SOAP Opera, Puccini’s La Rondine (Magda) Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Helena) and Dialogues des Carmélites (Madame Lidoine) with PSU opera, Carmen (Frasquita) and Brahms Requiem (Soloist) with the Juneau Symphony, Dido and Aeneas (Belinda), Gianni Schicchi (Lauretta), and The Last Leaf (Sue) with Opera to Go Juneau, Carmina Burana with the Orlando Opera Company, The Mikado (Yum-Yum), and The Marriage of Figaro (Susanna) with Juneau Lyric Opera,  Meine Seel erhebt den Herrn BWV 10 Soloist, and Nun danket alle Gott BWV 192 Soloist with the Bach Society, Carmen(Micaëla), La bohème(Musetta), Die Zauberflöte(The Queen of the Night), Norma (Casta Diva), Wagner’s The Wesendonck Lieder (Soloist) with the Mt. Hood Pops Orchestra.

Tiffany encourages her students to thrive on challenges and to embrace the joy that music brings. She enjoys performing and teaching opera, musical theatre, pop, classical, country, and jazz, and she hopes to inspire this love of all music in her students. She is always encouraging and the lessons/classes must be fun! She considers teaching her true passion and calling, and understanding that all students have different goals and abilities, she tailors the lesson plans to each lesson for the student.

Website:  https://tiffanyghanson.wixsite.com/soprano
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DAXc3gyXJ24

guitar, electric bass

Bryan Bergeron Killough

Bryan teaches “The History of Jazz” at the University of New England and is the music teacher at Eliot Elementary School. As a guitarist and performer Bryan has been an integral part of the New England music scene for the past 20 years. He is a founding member of the alternative rock band GrooveChild and the award-wining gypsy jazz group The Hot Club of Portland. Bryan performs frequently as a solo artist, with jazz and rock bands, and with the Seacoast Big Band. Bryan is the happy father of five, Naomi, Rose, Toby, Timbre Grace, and Augustin.

Education:B.A. in Jazz Performance, M.A. in Musicology, University of New Hampshire

trumpet, piano, composition

Chris Klaxton

Chris has studied trumpet under Dr. Clark Terry (Duke Ellington Orchestra, Count Basie Orchestra, Tonight Show Orchestra), Dr. Robert Stibler, Jason Carder (Ray Charles Orchestra, Maria Schneider Orchestra), and Brian Lynch (Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, Horace Silver, Eddie Palmieri), as well as recently studying composition with Dave Douglas and renowned film composer and trumpeter,Terence Blanchard (Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers). Teaching throughout New Hampshire, Chris has held a studio of both trumpet and piano students for over 12 years. In addition to teaching private instrumental lessons, Chris is also available for improvisation instruction for students of any age/level/instrument. As a performer in the Seacoast area over the last 10 years, Chris can be found in groups of varying styles ranging from jazz, bluegrass, and hip hop to indie rock and classical music.

Education:B.A. in Classical Trumpet Performance, University of New Hampshire; M.M. in Jazz Trumpet Performance, University of Miami

saxophone, piano, clarinet, jazz studies, music theory

Eric Klaxton

Eric Klaxton (saxophone, jazz piano, composition, audio production)  earned his BA in Saxophone Performance at the University of New Hampshire in 2011 and will complete his Masters Degree in Jazz and Contemporary Music from Longy School of Music in the spring of ‘22. Notably, he has studied saxophone with Noah Preminger and Bill McHenry, as well as composition with Ben Allison and Frank Carlberg. Eric
Eric is a founding member of The Soggy Po Boys and can be found playing woodwinds in Sojoy and OurBigBand. In addition to his work with collective ensembles, he writes and arranges original works for various groups of his own, imbued with traditions from jazz, rock, folk, and electronic music.
Visit www.ericklaxton.com for a schedule of upcoming performances and more information about Eric’s music and teaching.

Education:B.A. in Music Performance Saxophone/Jazz Studies, University of New Hampshire

saxophone

Matt Langley

Saxophone studies with Stan Strickland, Lou Marini. Theory with David Baker. Performing professionally since 1978…yup, 1978. Finding new sounds repeatedly. Private teaching and ensemble coaching since 1995. Seeking to instill/nurture/spark lifelong curiosity. Toured nationally and recorded multiple CDs with mentor and spiritual guide Charlie Kohlhase. Toured internationally with Frankie Spellman and the CA Band. Over 30 recordings as a sideman. Graphic designer and programmer since 1990. Too many CD projects, websites, posters, and hockey catalogs to list. Awestruck father of two inspiring grown humans. Adoring husband of Pammie “Zool-ie-Q” Langley, for whom the “Zool Lawn Tool” pedal-powered lawnmower is named. Currently performing with numerous groups in the area and teaching at PMAC, The Concord NH Community Music School, the Shaker Road School, and at his home studio in Eliot, ME. Summer fun at PMAC Teen Jazz Camp, NHISOM Lake Winni Music Camp and NEAMC at the Snow Pond Center. Matt has shared the stage or recording studio with many wonderful souls including Ron Carter (twice! And he even got a hug from Mr. Carter the second time!), Fred Hersch, John Tchicai, John Medeski, Billy Martin, Chris Wood, Dave Fuzinski, Matt Wilson, Charlie Kohlhase, Tiger Okoshi, Roswell Rudd, and Gene MacDaniels, among many others.

clarinet, piano, music therapy

Virginia Macdonald, MA, MT-BC

Virginia, “Ginna”, has been a teacher and performer in the Seacoast community for 15 years. When it seemed time to continue her education, she decided to enroll in Lesley University’s master’s program for mental health counseling and music therapy. When not teaching or helping people with the challenges of life through music, she can be found performing in the pit for various local theater productions, and with her clarinet and saxophone ensemble and woodwind quintet.

Education:B.S. in Music Education, University of Connecticut; M.A. in Music Therapy, Lesley University

Piano

Adam MacDougall

Adam is originally from North Berwick, Maine, and has spent most of his career teaching and performing in and around the New Hampshire seacoast, including nearly fifteen years as an instructor at Portsmouth Music & Arts Center. In 2018, he sadly had to bid farewell to his PMAC family when he relocated to Pittsburgh, where he has continued to teach and perform. He got his start playing piano at the age of 9, and was largely self-taught through high school. Despite the lack of early formal training, he went on to earn a B.A. in Music Performance at Eastern Nazarene College. He is most in his element with classical repertoire, but he also has frequently performed in musical theatre, occasionally dabbling in rock and jazz as well. He is so thrilled to have the opportunity to teach at PMAC again!

violin, viola, cello

Lynne White McMahon

Lynne is a freelance violinist who has studied under Philip Naegele, Giorgio Ciompi, and Ani Kavafian. She performs frequently throughout New England, playing in chamber groups and accompanying choral groups in the Seacoast area. In addition to being a longtime member of the Artful Noise String Quartet, she has also performed with the symphony orchestras of Portland, Portsmouth, and the Lakes Region. Lynne has also taught in many area schools, including Berwick Academy, River Tree Arts, and the York, ME public schools. She conducts the Seacoast Youth Symphony Orchestra (SYSO) Junior Ensemble and teaches violin, viola, and cello lessons at PMAC as well as in her private studio at home in Cape Neddick, ME.

Education:B.A. in Music Performance; M.Ed. in Music Education, Smith College

piano, percussion, drumming, composition

Jonny Peiffer

Jonny has been performing in and out of the Seacoast since 1997. He studied jazz piano with Mark Shilansky, classical piano with Arlene Kies, and composition with Mike Annicchiarico at UNH. Jonny teaches students of all ages and backgrounds. He specializes in various Latin piano styles as well as jazz, classical, funk/R&B, and more. He also encourages all of his students to compose music of their own. Jonny founded the Spotlight Award-winning jazz septet Sojoy in 2014 and has since recorded two albums of all original compositions with the group (sojoymusic.com). Jonny has composed music for theatrical productions at W.E.S.T.; Prescott Park Arts Festival; The Dance Hall, Kittery; and Dance Theatre Workshop, NYC. He co-founded several other projects in the area, including Shango Afro-beat orchestra, Desert Island Live (performing full-length albums of Tom Waits and Joni Mitchell), and Soundbody (a yoga, meditation, and music collaboration). Learn more at jonnypeiffer.com and follow him on Facebook @jonnypeiffermusic.

Education: B.A. in Music Performance, University of New Hampshire

Guitar

Keith Perry

Keith Perry is a graduate from the University of New Hampshire who got his undergraduate degree in Jazz Performance. Keith has been studying guitar for fourteen years with instructors such as David Newsam, Mack Walters, and Phil Sergent. He has experience teaching all ages since he has been a teacher in the seacoast area for the last 5 years, as well as having experience teaching at UNH’s SYMS program. Keith teaches private guitar lessons including styles such as Jazz, Blues, Rock, Pop and many others. In 2017, he also got to perform in the Montreux Jazz Festival while on tour in Switzerland and Italy with the 3 o’clock Jazz Ensemble at UNH. Keith regularly plays around the seacoast area at venues including Blue in Portland, the Stone Church, and many other restaurants and clubs.

guitar, electric bass, ukulele, recording technology

Nick Phaneuf

Nick Phaneuf performs throughout the East Coast with bands Soggy Po Boys, NOVEL / NOVELLA, Dan Blakeslee and the Calabash Club, and fiveighthirteen. He has taught at PMAC since 2008 as a private instructor, music technology teacher and co-director of the PMAC rock band program. He is also an adjunct faculty member at Phillips Exeter Academy teaching music technology. Nick lives in Barrington, NH with his wife Michaela, his son Winter, and their dog Aquaman.

upright bass, mandolin, guitar, fiddle, ukulele

Steve Roy

While at UNH, Steve studied upright bass with John Hunter. Since then he has been teaching and performing locally as well as internationally for well over a decade. As a sideman, he has toured internationally with acts such as Laurie Lewis and Tom Rozum, John Reischman and the Taterbugs, Molly Tuttle, Joe K. Walsh, Frank Solivan and Dirty Kitchen, Joy Kills Sorrow, Hit and Run Bluegrass, and many others. Locally he is well known for his work with groups such as Jazzputin and the Jug Skunks, Steve and Dave Play Dead (w/ David Surette), Erica Brown and the Bluegrass Connection, The Stowaways, High Range, The Mill City Ramblers, Spinal Tarp, and countless others. He has been leading a weekly open bluegrass jam on the New Hampshire Seacoast for over a decade. Bluegrass Now Magazine calls Steve a “devastating weapon.” He is currently a faculty member at PMAC and at 317 Main St. Community Music Center in Yarmouth, ME. He has taught at bluegrass camps and workshops throughout the U.S. and Canada, including Steve Kaufman’s Acoustic Kamp (TN), Nimblefingers Old Time & Bluegrass Workshops in British Columbia, and many others. Steve is also an archaeologist with field experience in Central America and New England.

Education:B.A., University of New Hampshire

drums, drum set

Jim Rudolf

Jim Rudolf performs with Dan Blakeslee, Elsa Cross, Tony Sarno, f-tet, Jazzsputin and the Jug Skunks, and Tan Vampires, which was voted Best New Hampshire Band (2010) by the Boston Phoenix. Jim also received a 2009 Spotlight award in the category of “All-Around Musician,” along with fellow PMAC faculty member, Mike Effenberger. He also teaches writing courses at UNH and Great Bay Community College.

Education:Music studies at New School University

Cello

Hannah Soren

Cellist Hannah Soren is an active performer, educator, and artist in the Greater Boston area. Hannah has held fellowships at Texas Music Festival and Atlantic Music Festival and was invited to attend the National Repertory Orchestra for their 2020 Summer Season. She received her B.M. in cello performance from The University of Louisville and recently earned her M.M. in Cello Performance along with a Professional Studies Certificate from Boston Conservatory where she studied with Andrew Mark. As an educator, Hannah believes that students of all backgrounds, ages, etc. deserve the opportunity for music lessons and enrichment.

flute

Kibbie Straw

Kibbie has been teaching flute privately since 1990 and specializes in Baroque, Classical, and Romantic styles. She is a member of the woodwind quintet Quintessence and the Seacoast Flute Ensemble.

Education:B.M. in Music Education, University of New Hampshire

Voice

Crystal Taber

German-born soprano, Crystal Marie is a thriving young performer in the New England musical community. During her reign last year as Ms. Maine 2018, she was named a top 10 finalist in Boston’s 2017 American Idol auditions. She has been seen in local productions of Fiddler on the Roof, Music Man, and countless music venues with various local bands. In 2016, she held a residency at Portland’s Studio 55, Portland House of Music and Events, and a Queen tribute band as a vocalist.

A graduate of Boston University’s Vocal Performance program, Crystal performed at Boston Symphony Hall with the BU Symphonic Choir under Dr. Ann Howard Jones and in the Marsh Chapel Choir. She made her professional Jordan Hall debut in 2009 as a soloist. She also performed in operas and opera scenes. An avid performer of all genres of music, Crystal sings in open mics around New England and has even sung the National Anthem for a Celtics game at the Toyota Center in Houston, TX. She is an active volunteer around the New England community and performs at charity functions and festivals such as the WE Believe Conference in St. John, New Brunswick.

Crystal currently coaches private vocal lessons, acting, and basic music theory for students of all ages from ages. She recently joined both Eric Grant Band and Sugah Rush as the lead vocalist. Her latest project is writing an album with her “drama pop” duo, Sweet Thieves, projected to be released in late Spring 2019. An avid fitness and health junkie, she believes that a healthy body and mind are invaluable for all singers. She is known for incorporating movement into her lessons and performances. Her specialties include coaching breathing techniques, movement, singing in various languages, harmonies, acting, and last but not least, maintaining a healthy voice.

upright bass

Nate Therrien

Acoustic and Electric Bassist, Nathan Therrien is a New Hampshire native and active freelance musician in and around New England. Nathan’s versatility has kept him in high demand playing styles ranging from jazz, funk and rock to classical and blues. He has performed in concerts and made radio appearances domestically and abroad, playing at such venues as Boston Symphony Hall, Carnegie Hall, and the Library of Congress. Since 2009 Nate has been teaching music in the Concord NH School District and is on faculty at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester, NH. Nate lives in Portsmouth with his wife and daughter.

Education:B.M. in Music Education, University of New Hampshire; M. M. in Jazz Performance, New England Conservatory

drums, drum set

Mike Walsh

Mike Walsh has been a student of drumming for over 30 years. For the past 20 years, Mike has been a NH Seacoast–based full-time drum instructor and performer. In 1999, Mike graduated from UNH with a B.M. in Music Performance. While at UNH, Mike studied with Bob Gullotti, Les Harris Jr., and Nancy Smith. In recent years, Mike has continued private studies with Dave Dicenso, Steve Michaud, Dan Weiss, and Peter Moutis. Mike is currently the drummer for several Seacoast bands, including Mother Superior and The Sliding Royales, The Texas Governor and The Experiments, Equal Time, Fiveighthirteen, Weird Turn Pro, and Tiger Belly. Earlier in his career, Mike performed and recorded with The Amorphous Band, Analog Method, Hipology, and Mr Ho’s Orchestrotica. The last 20 years of performing music have brought Mike performing throughout New England as well as New York City, Las Vegas, Toronto, and Mexico City. Mike is a drum instructor at PMAC and Shaker Road School in Concord, NH. When not performing or teaching drums, Mike also works part-time at The Drum Center of Portsmouth.

Education: B.A. in Music Performance, University of New Hampshire

Strings

Sally Wituszynski

Sally is a freelance violist and violinist who studied under Heidi Castleman and Marcus Thompson. She performs frequently throughout New England, primarily in orchestras and chamber music ensembles. Sally is a founding member of the Artful Noise String Quartet and principal violist of the Lakes Region Symphony, and also currently performs with the New Hampshire and Great Bay Philharmonic Orchestras. She was the string teacher and orchestra director at Berwick Academy in southern Maine for 20 years, and she was the Master Teacher for the String Project at the University of New Hampshire for four years. She currently directs the instrumental music program at Tri-City Christian Academy near her home in Somersworth, NH. Sally has maintained a private teaching studio in the New Hampshire Seacoast area since 1984, and is a Past President of the New Hampshire Chapter of the American String Teachers’ Association.

She conducts the Teen Chamber Strings at PMAC.

Education: B.M. in Viola Performance, New England Conservatory of Music;

M.A. in Music Education, University of New Hampshire

guitar, ukulele, music technology

Jason Crigler

guitar/bass, composition, songwriting, music theory

Jim Dozet

guitar, electric bass

Bryan Bergeron Killough

Guitar

Keith Perry

guitar, electric bass, ukulele, recording technology

Nick Phaneuf

upright bass, mandolin, guitar, fiddle, ukulele

Steve Roy

upright bass

Nate Therrien

guitar, ukulele, music technology

Jason Crigler

Jason has been teaching music professionally for over 20 years. While living in New York City, Jason worked with numerous artists including John Cale, Marshall Crenshaw, Linda Thompson, and Teddy Thompson. Jason has also performed with Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, and Martha Wainwright. As a composer Jason has created music for a number of films, including the feature-length documentaries Ashtanga, NY and Tending Fires as well as the film short Grand Street. Jason is on the faculty at Berwick Academy in South Berwick, ME.

Education:B.A., Connecticut College; music studies at Berklee College of Music

guitar/bass, composition, songwriting, music theory

Jim Dozet

Jim attended the University of New Hampshire, where he studied under David Newsam. After graduating from UNH, he studied privately with renowned Berklee professor Bruce Bartlett (Billy Cobham, Chick Corea, John Blackwell) in Boston, MA. He has taught locally for the past 20 years both privately and at local music stores. Jim has taught master classes in funk guitar styles at S.Y.M.S (Summer Youth Music School) and makes regular appearances at UNH giving lectures and running clinics for the guitar students there. In addition to guitar studies Jim also offers lessons in music theory, composition, and songwriting. While maintaining a busy teaching schedule, Jim performs regularly, both locally and regionally with various groups. In his 20 years as a professional/performing musician Jim has performed various styles ranging from funk, blues, jazz, hip hop, rock, and acoustic/singer-songwriter. Jim has performed at the Bonnaroo music festival and opened for acts such as Soulive, George Clinton, Robert Randolph, and The Roots. He lives in South Berwick, ME with his wife Alex. Learn more about Jim at his website JimDozetMusic.com and Jim’s Public Facebook Page, Jim Dozet Music

Education:B.M. in Jazz Performance, University of New Hampshire

guitar, electric bass

Bryan Bergeron Killough

Bryan teaches “The History of Jazz” at the University of New England and is the music teacher at Eliot Elementary School. As a guitarist and performer Bryan has been an integral part of the New England music scene for the past 20 years. He is a founding member of the alternative rock band GrooveChild and the award-wining gypsy jazz group The Hot Club of Portland. Bryan performs frequently as a solo artist, with jazz and rock bands, and with the Seacoast Big Band. Bryan is the happy father of five, Naomi, Rose, Toby, Timbre Grace, and Augustin.

Education:B.A. in Jazz Performance, M.A. in Musicology, University of New Hampshire

Guitar

Keith Perry

Keith Perry is a graduate from the University of New Hampshire who got his undergraduate degree in Jazz Performance. Keith has been studying guitar for fourteen years with instructors such as David Newsam, Mack Walters, and Phil Sergent. He has experience teaching all ages since he has been a teacher in the seacoast area for the last 5 years, as well as having experience teaching at UNH’s SYMS program. Keith teaches private guitar lessons including styles such as Jazz, Blues, Rock, Pop and many others. In 2017, he also got to perform in the Montreux Jazz Festival while on tour in Switzerland and Italy with the 3 o’clock Jazz Ensemble at UNH. Keith regularly plays around the seacoast area at venues including Blue in Portland, the Stone Church, and many other restaurants and clubs.

guitar, electric bass, ukulele, recording technology

Nick Phaneuf

Nick Phaneuf performs throughout the East Coast with bands Soggy Po Boys, NOVEL / NOVELLA, Dan Blakeslee and the Calabash Club, and fiveighthirteen. He has taught at PMAC since 2008 as a private instructor, music technology teacher and co-director of the PMAC rock band program. He is also an adjunct faculty member at Phillips Exeter Academy teaching music technology. Nick lives in Barrington, NH with his wife Michaela, his son Winter, and their dog Aquaman.

upright bass, mandolin, guitar, fiddle, ukulele

Steve Roy

While at UNH, Steve studied upright bass with John Hunter. Since then he has been teaching and performing locally as well as internationally for well over a decade. As a sideman, he has toured internationally with acts such as Laurie Lewis and Tom Rozum, John Reischman and the Taterbugs, Molly Tuttle, Joe K. Walsh, Frank Solivan and Dirty Kitchen, Joy Kills Sorrow, Hit and Run Bluegrass, and many others. Locally he is well known for his work with groups such as Jazzputin and the Jug Skunks, Steve and Dave Play Dead (w/ David Surette), Erica Brown and the Bluegrass Connection, The Stowaways, High Range, The Mill City Ramblers, Spinal Tarp, and countless others. He has been leading a weekly open bluegrass jam on the New Hampshire Seacoast for over a decade. Bluegrass Now Magazine calls Steve a “devastating weapon.” He is currently a faculty member at PMAC and at 317 Main St. Community Music Center in Yarmouth, ME. He has taught at bluegrass camps and workshops throughout the U.S. and Canada, including Steve Kaufman’s Acoustic Kamp (TN), Nimblefingers Old Time & Bluegrass Workshops in British Columbia, and many others. Steve is also an archaeologist with field experience in Central America and New England.

Education:B.A., University of New Hampshire

upright bass

Nate Therrien

Acoustic and Electric Bassist, Nathan Therrien is a New Hampshire native and active freelance musician in and around New England. Nathan’s versatility has kept him in high demand playing styles ranging from jazz, funk and rock to classical and blues. He has performed in concerts and made radio appearances domestically and abroad, playing at such venues as Boston Symphony Hall, Carnegie Hall, and the Library of Congress. Since 2009 Nate has been teaching music in the Concord NH School District and is on faculty at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester, NH. Nate lives in Portsmouth with his wife and daughter.

Education:B.M. in Music Education, University of New Hampshire; M. M. in Jazz Performance, New England Conservatory

Piano, Violin

Taylor Blankenship

violin, viola, cello

Lynne White McMahon

upright bass, mandolin, guitar, fiddle, ukulele

Steve Roy

Cello

Hannah Soren

upright bass

Nate Therrien

Strings

Sally Wituszynski

Piano, Violin

Taylor Blankenship

Taylor is from Worcester, MA. She moved to the seacoast of New Hampshire to study piano, strings, and English at the University of New Hampshire. During her time at UNH she was very fortunate to study piano and piano pedagogy with Arlene and Chris Kies. Arlene’s philosophy in piano pedagogy allowed Taylor to teach part-time in the Dover community while attending school, honing her skills as an educator. Taylor is able to provide her students with opportunities to perform in community events and spaces. While at UNH she was also fortunate to privately study viola and string teaching with Mimi Bravar, as well as Wituszynski and Larry Veal, founders of UNH String Project. Taylor is freelance musician and teacher in Exeter, NH, her home studio in the Seacoast community. As a teacher, Taylor hopes to not only provide her students with a solid foundation in music but also give them the resources to independently connect to music, art, culture, and knowledge.

Education::University of New Hampshire

violin, viola, cello

Lynne White McMahon

Lynne is a freelance violinist who has studied under Philip Naegele, Giorgio Ciompi, and Ani Kavafian. She performs frequently throughout New England, playing in chamber groups and accompanying choral groups in the Seacoast area. In addition to being a longtime member of the Artful Noise String Quartet, she has also performed with the symphony orchestras of Portland, Portsmouth, and the Lakes Region. Lynne has also taught in many area schools, including Berwick Academy, River Tree Arts, and the York, ME public schools. She conducts the Seacoast Youth Symphony Orchestra (SYSO) Junior Ensemble and teaches violin, viola, and cello lessons at PMAC as well as in her private studio at home in Cape Neddick, ME.

Education:B.A. in Music Performance; M.Ed. in Music Education, Smith College

upright bass, mandolin, guitar, fiddle, ukulele

Steve Roy

While at UNH, Steve studied upright bass with John Hunter. Since then he has been teaching and performing locally as well as internationally for well over a decade. As a sideman, he has toured internationally with acts such as Laurie Lewis and Tom Rozum, John Reischman and the Taterbugs, Molly Tuttle, Joe K. Walsh, Frank Solivan and Dirty Kitchen, Joy Kills Sorrow, Hit and Run Bluegrass, and many others. Locally he is well known for his work with groups such as Jazzputin and the Jug Skunks, Steve and Dave Play Dead (w/ David Surette), Erica Brown and the Bluegrass Connection, The Stowaways, High Range, The Mill City Ramblers, Spinal Tarp, and countless others. He has been leading a weekly open bluegrass jam on the New Hampshire Seacoast for over a decade. Bluegrass Now Magazine calls Steve a “devastating weapon.” He is currently a faculty member at PMAC and at 317 Main St. Community Music Center in Yarmouth, ME. He has taught at bluegrass camps and workshops throughout the U.S. and Canada, including Steve Kaufman’s Acoustic Kamp (TN), Nimblefingers Old Time & Bluegrass Workshops in British Columbia, and many others. Steve is also an archaeologist with field experience in Central America and New England.

Education:B.A., University of New Hampshire

Cello

Hannah Soren

Cellist Hannah Soren is an active performer, educator, and artist in the Greater Boston area. Hannah has held fellowships at Texas Music Festival and Atlantic Music Festival and was invited to attend the National Repertory Orchestra for their 2020 Summer Season. She received her B.M. in cello performance from The University of Louisville and recently earned her M.M. in Cello Performance along with a Professional Studies Certificate from Boston Conservatory where she studied with Andrew Mark. As an educator, Hannah believes that students of all backgrounds, ages, etc. deserve the opportunity for music lessons and enrichment.

upright bass

Nate Therrien

Acoustic and Electric Bassist, Nathan Therrien is a New Hampshire native and active freelance musician in and around New England. Nathan’s versatility has kept him in high demand playing styles ranging from jazz, funk and rock to classical and blues. He has performed in concerts and made radio appearances domestically and abroad, playing at such venues as Boston Symphony Hall, Carnegie Hall, and the Library of Congress. Since 2009 Nate has been teaching music in the Concord NH School District and is on faculty at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester, NH. Nate lives in Portsmouth with his wife and daughter.

Education:B.M. in Music Education, University of New Hampshire; M. M. in Jazz Performance, New England Conservatory

Strings

Sally Wituszynski

Sally is a freelance violist and violinist who studied under Heidi Castleman and Marcus Thompson. She performs frequently throughout New England, primarily in orchestras and chamber music ensembles. Sally is a founding member of the Artful Noise String Quartet and principal violist of the Lakes Region Symphony, and also currently performs with the New Hampshire and Great Bay Philharmonic Orchestras. She was the string teacher and orchestra director at Berwick Academy in southern Maine for 20 years, and she was the Master Teacher for the String Project at the University of New Hampshire for four years. She currently directs the instrumental music program at Tri-City Christian Academy near her home in Somersworth, NH. Sally has maintained a private teaching studio in the New Hampshire Seacoast area since 1984, and is a Past President of the New Hampshire Chapter of the American String Teachers’ Association.

She conducts the Teen Chamber Strings at PMAC.

Education: B.M. in Viola Performance, New England Conservatory of Music;

M.A. in Music Education, University of New Hampshire

Percussion, Ensembles

Brian Shankar Adler

piano, percussion, drumming, composition

Jonny Peiffer

drums, drum set

Jim Rudolf

drums, drum set

Mike Walsh

Percussion, Ensembles

Brian Shankar Adler

Brian Shankar Adler is a prolific drummer, percussionist, and composer who grew up in the mountains of upstate New York. With a background in Indian music, a conservatory training and over fifteen years of professional experience in New York City, Adler eats, sleeps and breathes rhythm. Adler has worked with: Bob Brookmeyer, Bomba de Tiempo, Bombay Rickey, Shelia Jordan, LA Opera, Kate McGarry, Guillermo Klein, and Ray Vega. He has been featured in Modern Drummer Magazine, DownBeat, Jazz Times, and NPR’s New Sounds. His music video, “Mantra” won best music video at Transcinema International Film Festival in Peru and at the 2020 Independent Music Awards. Adler has toured four continents, has been recorded on more than 30 albums and currently leads Human Time Machine.

Education: BM, Jazz Performance, New England Conservatory

piano, percussion, drumming, composition

Jonny Peiffer

Jonny has been performing in and out of the Seacoast since 1997. He studied jazz piano with Mark Shilansky, classical piano with Arlene Kies, and composition with Mike Annicchiarico at UNH. Jonny teaches students of all ages and backgrounds. He specializes in various Latin piano styles as well as jazz, classical, funk/R&B, and more. He also encourages all of his students to compose music of their own. Jonny founded the Spotlight Award-winning jazz septet Sojoy in 2014 and has since recorded two albums of all original compositions with the group (sojoymusic.com). Jonny has composed music for theatrical productions at W.E.S.T.; Prescott Park Arts Festival; The Dance Hall, Kittery; and Dance Theatre Workshop, NYC. He co-founded several other projects in the area, including Shango Afro-beat orchestra, Desert Island Live (performing full-length albums of Tom Waits and Joni Mitchell), and Soundbody (a yoga, meditation, and music collaboration). Learn more at jonnypeiffer.com and follow him on Facebook @jonnypeiffermusic.

Education: B.A. in Music Performance, University of New Hampshire

drums, drum set

Jim Rudolf

Jim Rudolf performs with Dan Blakeslee, Elsa Cross, Tony Sarno, f-tet, Jazzsputin and the Jug Skunks, and Tan Vampires, which was voted Best New Hampshire Band (2010) by the Boston Phoenix. Jim also received a 2009 Spotlight award in the category of “All-Around Musician,” along with fellow PMAC faculty member, Mike Effenberger. He also teaches writing courses at UNH and Great Bay Community College.

Education:Music studies at New School University

drums, drum set

Mike Walsh

Mike Walsh has been a student of drumming for over 30 years. For the past 20 years, Mike has been a NH Seacoast–based full-time drum instructor and performer. In 1999, Mike graduated from UNH with a B.M. in Music Performance. While at UNH, Mike studied with Bob Gullotti, Les Harris Jr., and Nancy Smith. In recent years, Mike has continued private studies with Dave Dicenso, Steve Michaud, Dan Weiss, and Peter Moutis. Mike is currently the drummer for several Seacoast bands, including Mother Superior and The Sliding Royales, The Texas Governor and The Experiments, Equal Time, Fiveighthirteen, Weird Turn Pro, and Tiger Belly. Earlier in his career, Mike performed and recorded with The Amorphous Band, Analog Method, Hipology, and Mr Ho’s Orchestrotica. The last 20 years of performing music have brought Mike performing throughout New England as well as New York City, Las Vegas, Toronto, and Mexico City. Mike is a drum instructor at PMAC and Shaker Road School in Concord, NH. When not performing or teaching drums, Mike also works part-time at The Drum Center of Portsmouth.

Education: B.A. in Music Performance, University of New Hampshire

Saxophone, Flute, Clarinet

Allie Edge

Josh Gagnon Teaching Artist
Trombone

Josh Gagnon

saxophone, composition, music theory

Russ Grazier

trumpet, piano, composition

Chris Klaxton

saxophone, piano, clarinet, jazz studies, music theory

Eric Klaxton

saxophone

Matt Langley

clarinet, piano, music therapy

Virginia Macdonald, MA, MT-BC

flute

Kibbie Straw

Saxophone, Flute, Clarinet

Allie Edge

Allie is from North Attleboro, MA. Moving to the Seacoast NH to study Music Education, Saxophone and Clarinet at the University of New Hampshire. Allie has been teaching woodwinds privately since 2010, and in public school since 2012. She is currently the band, chorus and music teacher at Barnstead Elementary School.
Allie is an active member in a seacoast bands such as, Soulation, OURBIGBAND, Seacoast Big Band, and SheFunk.
Josh Gagnon Teaching Artist

Trombone

Josh Gagnon

Josh Gagnon is a trombonist, educator, and creative professional based in Boston, Massachusetts. Through advanced technical study and many years of private study on the instrument, Josh has been able to pursue playing in various groups as a student at the University of New Hampshire and the Eastman School of Music, as well as many professional settings.

In addition to his classical training, Josh developed a passion for jazz while surrounded by the rich improvised music scene in New England.  His interests were given direction and focus by acclaimed teachers such as Chris Oberholtzer, Kendall Moore, Mark Shilansky, Mark Kellogg, and Dante Luciani. At the University of New Hampshire, Josh’s jazz studies were driven by performing ensembles such as UNH’s 3 o’Clock Jazz Band, and several jazz combos. Josh maintains an active calendar of professional jazz and commercial performances throughout the East Coast.

saxophone, composition, music theory

Russ Grazier

Co-Founder of PMAC, Executive Director – Composer and saxophonist Russ Grazier, Jr. is a native of Portsmouth, NH and has taught saxophone, composition, and music theory for over 25 years. In 2002 he co-founded PMAC with his wife Katie and mentor Wendell Purrington. In the years leading up to the creation of PMAC he taught at some of the most prestigious music schools in the country including Boston Conservatory, Roosevelt University (Chicago), the University of Chicago College, the New England Conservatory Preparatory School, and the Merit School of Music (Chicago). Russ has been composer-in-residence with Chicago’s CUBE Ensemble, and his music has been performed by the Contemporary Chamber Players of Chicago, the West End String Quartet, CUBE, Voices from the Heart, Duo Fujin, and many other ensembles and soloists. Russ was named 2016 Arts Advocate of the Year by New Hampshire Citizens for the Arts and is a past president of Art-Speak, the cultural commission for the city of Portsmouth, where he lives with his wife, Katie, and their two sons, Max and Jake.

Education:B.M. in Composition (with Saxophone Concentration), Boston Conservatory; M.M. in Composition, Peabody Conservatory; Graduate Composition Studies at the University of Chicago

trumpet, piano, composition

Chris Klaxton

Chris has studied trumpet under Dr. Clark Terry (Duke Ellington Orchestra, Count Basie Orchestra, Tonight Show Orchestra), Dr. Robert Stibler, Jason Carder (Ray Charles Orchestra, Maria Schneider Orchestra), and Brian Lynch (Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, Horace Silver, Eddie Palmieri), as well as recently studying composition with Dave Douglas and renowned film composer and trumpeter,Terence Blanchard (Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers). Teaching throughout New Hampshire, Chris has held a studio of both trumpet and piano students for over 12 years. In addition to teaching private instrumental lessons, Chris is also available for improvisation instruction for students of any age/level/instrument. As a performer in the Seacoast area over the last 10 years, Chris can be found in groups of varying styles ranging from jazz, bluegrass, and hip hop to indie rock and classical music.

Education:B.A. in Classical Trumpet Performance, University of New Hampshire; M.M. in Jazz Trumpet Performance, University of Miami

saxophone, piano, clarinet, jazz studies, music theory

Eric Klaxton

Eric Klaxton (saxophone, jazz piano, composition, audio production)  earned his BA in Saxophone Performance at the University of New Hampshire in 2011 and will complete his Masters Degree in Jazz and Contemporary Music from Longy School of Music in the spring of ‘22. Notably, he has studied saxophone with Noah Preminger and Bill McHenry, as well as composition with Ben Allison and Frank Carlberg. Eric
Eric is a founding member of The Soggy Po Boys and can be found playing woodwinds in Sojoy and OurBigBand. In addition to his work with collective ensembles, he writes and arranges original works for various groups of his own, imbued with traditions from jazz, rock, folk, and electronic music.
Visit www.ericklaxton.com for a schedule of upcoming performances and more information about Eric’s music and teaching.

Education:B.A. in Music Performance Saxophone/Jazz Studies, University of New Hampshire

saxophone

Matt Langley

Saxophone studies with Stan Strickland, Lou Marini. Theory with David Baker. Performing professionally since 1978…yup, 1978. Finding new sounds repeatedly. Private teaching and ensemble coaching since 1995. Seeking to instill/nurture/spark lifelong curiosity. Toured nationally and recorded multiple CDs with mentor and spiritual guide Charlie Kohlhase. Toured internationally with Frankie Spellman and the CA Band. Over 30 recordings as a sideman. Graphic designer and programmer since 1990. Too many CD projects, websites, posters, and hockey catalogs to list. Awestruck father of two inspiring grown humans. Adoring husband of Pammie “Zool-ie-Q” Langley, for whom the “Zool Lawn Tool” pedal-powered lawnmower is named. Currently performing with numerous groups in the area and teaching at PMAC, The Concord NH Community Music School, the Shaker Road School, and at his home studio in Eliot, ME. Summer fun at PMAC Teen Jazz Camp, NHISOM Lake Winni Music Camp and NEAMC at the Snow Pond Center. Matt has shared the stage or recording studio with many wonderful souls including Ron Carter (twice! And he even got a hug from Mr. Carter the second time!), Fred Hersch, John Tchicai, John Medeski, Billy Martin, Chris Wood, Dave Fuzinski, Matt Wilson, Charlie Kohlhase, Tiger Okoshi, Roswell Rudd, and Gene MacDaniels, among many others.

clarinet, piano, music therapy

Virginia Macdonald, MA, MT-BC

Virginia, “Ginna”, has been a teacher and performer in the Seacoast community for 15 years. When it seemed time to continue her education, she decided to enroll in Lesley University’s master’s program for mental health counseling and music therapy. When not teaching or helping people with the challenges of life through music, she can be found performing in the pit for various local theater productions, and with her clarinet and saxophone ensemble and woodwind quintet.

Education:B.S. in Music Education, University of Connecticut; M.A. in Music Therapy, Lesley University

flute

Kibbie Straw

Kibbie has been teaching flute privately since 1990 and specializes in Baroque, Classical, and Romantic styles. She is a member of the woodwind quintet Quintessence and the Seacoast Flute Ensemble.

Education:B.M. in Music Education, University of New Hampshire

Piano

Jeff Auger

Piano, Violin

Taylor Blankenship

piano, composition/music theory, Jazz Institute

Mike Effenberger

Piano

Kathy Fink

Tiffany Hanson
Voice, Piano

Tiffany Hanson

trumpet, piano, composition

Chris Klaxton

clarinet, piano, music therapy

Virginia Macdonald, MA, MT-BC

Piano

Adam MacDougall

piano, percussion, drumming, composition

Jonny Peiffer

Piano

Jeff Auger

Pianist, composer, and educator, Jeff has performed professionally for 25 years regionally, nationally, and internationally. In addition to a multi-year engagement at Boston’s famed Top of the Hub, he has performed and recorded with The Ritz, Clark Terry, Frank Wess, and Nick Brignola. Jeffrey can be heard regularly around Portsmouth and the Seacoast. He has taught jazz piano at the University of Southern Maine at Gorham and has been involved with the Corpus Christi Parish as a choir accompanist.

Education:B.A. in Music Education, Notre Dame College of Manchester, NH

Piano, Violin

Taylor Blankenship

Taylor is from Worcester, MA. She moved to the seacoast of New Hampshire to study piano, strings, and English at the University of New Hampshire. During her time at UNH she was very fortunate to study piano and piano pedagogy with Arlene and Chris Kies. Arlene’s philosophy in piano pedagogy allowed Taylor to teach part-time in the Dover community while attending school, honing her skills as an educator. Taylor is able to provide her students with opportunities to perform in community events and spaces. While at UNH she was also fortunate to privately study viola and string teaching with Mimi Bravar, as well as Wituszynski and Larry Veal, founders of UNH String Project. Taylor is freelance musician and teacher in Exeter, NH, her home studio in the Seacoast community. As a teacher, Taylor hopes to not only provide her students with a solid foundation in music but also give them the resources to independently connect to music, art, culture, and knowledge.

Education::University of New Hampshire

piano, composition/music theory, Jazz Institute

Mike Effenberger

Mike Effenberger is a recording and performing artist who has been living in the Seacoast since 2007. He received the Young Beacon in Jazz award from New School University in New York City, from which he graduated in 2005. Mike plays throughout New England with a variety of bands including Jazzputin and the Jug Skunks, the secular gospel choir Rock My Soul, OURBIGBAND, Dan Blakeslee, and many others, along with leading Weird Turn Pro in playing his original music. He plays nationally with Soggy Po’ Boys and internationally with Bing and Ruth. He appears on countless recordings, from independent releases to larger labels, including RVNG International and 4AD, and is also active as a producer.

Education:B.M. in Jazz Performance, New School University

Piano

Kathy Fink

Kathy Fink has been seen at many area theaters as both pianist and musical director. She is very excited to join the faculty at PMAC! She teaches all levels and styles of piano, co-leads the Fourth Street Jazz Choir, serves as choral instructor at the Cocheco Academy of the Arts (CATA), and is the Director of Music for St Thomas’ Episcopal Church in Dover. She has a BA in piano performance & MA in music history from UNH. Her accompanying career began at the age of 9 for the 4th grade chorus in Leeds, England. She accompanied first full-length musical at age 15. Kathy has worked at Prescott Park Arts Festival, the Rochester Opera House, the Rep, The Bell Center, Hackmatack Playhouse, the Palace Theatre, Garrison Players, Governor’s Inn, Players Ring, & more! You may recognize her from the local band Crossfire, which she played in from 1979-1988. Kathy lives in Dover with her husband Greg, and her beagle Cookie who offers moral support!

Education:UNH, BA in piano performance; MA in music history

Tiffany Hanson

Voice, Piano

Tiffany Hanson

Tiffany G. Hanson is a University of Central Florida graduate with a Bachelor of Music, emphasis in vocal performance. While still pursuing her degree, she began teaching voice and piano privately and in the classroom at Seminole State College as well as teaching a weekly Exploratory Music class, creatively introducing children to new sounds and instruments. After receiving her degree, Tiffany established a large studio in Juneau, Alaska where she also taught voice and piano for the University of Alaska Southeast. Tiffany moved to Portland and started her Master of Music degree at Portland State University in vocal performance. She taught voice and piano through her studio, Music Amore, and with CHORDination. In Virginia, where she taught through her company, Music Amore, for two years in Roanoke. In Virginia Beach, she performed solos weekly with Wycliff Presbyterian Church as the paid soprano section leader. There, she led the Music Makers program teaching groups of children Orff instruments and organizing three performances a year. In addition, she was the vocal and piano instructor for Great Neck Community Music School. She was also happy to go back and work with little ones at All Saints’ Day Preschool as a music teacher where she created a 12-week after school piano program for 4 to 5-year-olds ending in a fun recital.

Her Awards/Competitions include the Ruth Dobson Award for Outstanding Operatic Achievement and Classical Singer Convention Finalist, Regional Graduate Division
In the news, “Tiffany Hanson delivered a strong performance in PSU’s Dialogues des Carmélites as Madame Lidoine, as acclaimed by Oregon Music News.”

Other performances to date include L’elisir d’amore(Adina) with SOAP Opera, Puccini’s La Rondine (Magda) Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Helena) and Dialogues des Carmélites (Madame Lidoine) with PSU opera, Carmen (Frasquita) and Brahms Requiem (Soloist) with the Juneau Symphony, Dido and Aeneas (Belinda), Gianni Schicchi (Lauretta), and The Last Leaf (Sue) with Opera to Go Juneau, Carmina Burana with the Orlando Opera Company, The Mikado (Yum-Yum), and The Marriage of Figaro (Susanna) with Juneau Lyric Opera,  Meine Seel erhebt den Herrn BWV 10 Soloist, and Nun danket alle Gott BWV 192 Soloist with the Bach Society, Carmen(Micaëla), La bohème(Musetta), Die Zauberflöte(The Queen of the Night), Norma (Casta Diva), Wagner’s The Wesendonck Lieder (Soloist) with the Mt. Hood Pops Orchestra.

Tiffany encourages her students to thrive on challenges and to embrace the joy that music brings. She enjoys performing and teaching opera, musical theatre, pop, classical, country, and jazz, and she hopes to inspire this love of all music in her students. She is always encouraging and the lessons/classes must be fun! She considers teaching her true passion and calling, and understanding that all students have different goals and abilities, she tailors the lesson plans to each lesson for the student.

Website:  https://tiffanyghanson.wixsite.com/soprano
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DAXc3gyXJ24

trumpet, piano, composition

Chris Klaxton

Chris has studied trumpet under Dr. Clark Terry (Duke Ellington Orchestra, Count Basie Orchestra, Tonight Show Orchestra), Dr. Robert Stibler, Jason Carder (Ray Charles Orchestra, Maria Schneider Orchestra), and Brian Lynch (Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, Horace Silver, Eddie Palmieri), as well as recently studying composition with Dave Douglas and renowned film composer and trumpeter,Terence Blanchard (Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers). Teaching throughout New Hampshire, Chris has held a studio of both trumpet and piano students for over 12 years. In addition to teaching private instrumental lessons, Chris is also available for improvisation instruction for students of any age/level/instrument. As a performer in the Seacoast area over the last 10 years, Chris can be found in groups of varying styles ranging from jazz, bluegrass, and hip hop to indie rock and classical music.

Education:B.A. in Classical Trumpet Performance, University of New Hampshire; M.M. in Jazz Trumpet Performance, University of Miami

clarinet, piano, music therapy

Virginia Macdonald, MA, MT-BC

Virginia, “Ginna”, has been a teacher and performer in the Seacoast community for 15 years. When it seemed time to continue her education, she decided to enroll in Lesley University’s master’s program for mental health counseling and music therapy. When not teaching or helping people with the challenges of life through music, she can be found performing in the pit for various local theater productions, and with her clarinet and saxophone ensemble and woodwind quintet.

Education:B.S. in Music Education, University of Connecticut; M.A. in Music Therapy, Lesley University

Piano

Adam MacDougall

Adam is originally from North Berwick, Maine, and has spent most of his career teaching and performing in and around the New Hampshire seacoast, including nearly fifteen years as an instructor at Portsmouth Music & Arts Center. In 2018, he sadly had to bid farewell to his PMAC family when he relocated to Pittsburgh, where he has continued to teach and perform. He got his start playing piano at the age of 9, and was largely self-taught through high school. Despite the lack of early formal training, he went on to earn a B.A. in Music Performance at Eastern Nazarene College. He is most in his element with classical repertoire, but he also has frequently performed in musical theatre, occasionally dabbling in rock and jazz as well. He is so thrilled to have the opportunity to teach at PMAC again!

piano, percussion, drumming, composition

Jonny Peiffer

Jonny has been performing in and out of the Seacoast since 1997. He studied jazz piano with Mark Shilansky, classical piano with Arlene Kies, and composition with Mike Annicchiarico at UNH. Jonny teaches students of all ages and backgrounds. He specializes in various Latin piano styles as well as jazz, classical, funk/R&B, and more. He also encourages all of his students to compose music of their own. Jonny founded the Spotlight Award-winning jazz septet Sojoy in 2014 and has since recorded two albums of all original compositions with the group (sojoymusic.com). Jonny has composed music for theatrical productions at W.E.S.T.; Prescott Park Arts Festival; The Dance Hall, Kittery; and Dance Theatre Workshop, NYC. He co-founded several other projects in the area, including Shango Afro-beat orchestra, Desert Island Live (performing full-length albums of Tom Waits and Joni Mitchell), and Soundbody (a yoga, meditation, and music collaboration). Learn more at jonnypeiffer.com and follow him on Facebook @jonnypeiffermusic.

Education: B.A. in Music Performance, University of New Hampshire

Voice

Maria L. Boudreau

Tiffany Hanson
Voice, Piano

Tiffany Hanson

Voice

Crystal Taber

Voice

Maria L. Boudreau

Mezzo-soprano Maria L. Boudreau has been an active member of the New England music and theatre scene from a young age. A native of Dover, NH, she was involved in youth theater at Seacoast Repertory Theatre as a young girl and was a member of the New Hampshire Youth Choir throughout high school. She attended Plymouth State University, where she had the privilege of being a member of both the University Chorale and University Chamber Singers under the direction of Dr. Dan Perkins. With the Chamber Singers, she toured and sang in Chicago, Milwaukee, Chile, Southern California, Baltimore, and Washington D.C. She also had the privilege to sing at Carnegie Hall under Dr. Perkin’s direction. Maria performed many great works with both university groups, including Mozart’s Requiem, Bach’s Magnificat, both settings of Mozart’s Regina Coeli, and countless other works, with solos in each. She has experience teaching classical, music theater, and jazz singing styles and is thrilled to share her love of singing with her students at PMAC.

Education:B.A. in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy, Plymouth State University

Tiffany Hanson

Voice, Piano

Tiffany Hanson

Tiffany G. Hanson is a University of Central Florida graduate with a Bachelor of Music, emphasis in vocal performance. While still pursuing her degree, she began teaching voice and piano privately and in the classroom at Seminole State College as well as teaching a weekly Exploratory Music class, creatively introducing children to new sounds and instruments. After receiving her degree, Tiffany established a large studio in Juneau, Alaska where she also taught voice and piano for the University of Alaska Southeast. Tiffany moved to Portland and started her Master of Music degree at Portland State University in vocal performance. She taught voice and piano through her studio, Music Amore, and with CHORDination. In Virginia, where she taught through her company, Music Amore, for two years in Roanoke. In Virginia Beach, she performed solos weekly with Wycliff Presbyterian Church as the paid soprano section leader. There, she led the Music Makers program teaching groups of children Orff instruments and organizing three performances a year. In addition, she was the vocal and piano instructor for Great Neck Community Music School. She was also happy to go back and work with little ones at All Saints’ Day Preschool as a music teacher where she created a 12-week after school piano program for 4 to 5-year-olds ending in a fun recital.

Her Awards/Competitions include the Ruth Dobson Award for Outstanding Operatic Achievement and Classical Singer Convention Finalist, Regional Graduate Division
In the news, “Tiffany Hanson delivered a strong performance in PSU’s Dialogues des Carmélites as Madame Lidoine, as acclaimed by Oregon Music News.”

Other performances to date include L’elisir d’amore(Adina) with SOAP Opera, Puccini’s La Rondine (Magda) Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Helena) and Dialogues des Carmélites (Madame Lidoine) with PSU opera, Carmen (Frasquita) and Brahms Requiem (Soloist) with the Juneau Symphony, Dido and Aeneas (Belinda), Gianni Schicchi (Lauretta), and The Last Leaf (Sue) with Opera to Go Juneau, Carmina Burana with the Orlando Opera Company, The Mikado (Yum-Yum), and The Marriage of Figaro (Susanna) with Juneau Lyric Opera,  Meine Seel erhebt den Herrn BWV 10 Soloist, and Nun danket alle Gott BWV 192 Soloist with the Bach Society, Carmen(Micaëla), La bohème(Musetta), Die Zauberflöte(The Queen of the Night), Norma (Casta Diva), Wagner’s The Wesendonck Lieder (Soloist) with the Mt. Hood Pops Orchestra.

Tiffany encourages her students to thrive on challenges and to embrace the joy that music brings. She enjoys performing and teaching opera, musical theatre, pop, classical, country, and jazz, and she hopes to inspire this love of all music in her students. She is always encouraging and the lessons/classes must be fun! She considers teaching her true passion and calling, and understanding that all students have different goals and abilities, she tailors the lesson plans to each lesson for the student.

Website:  https://tiffanyghanson.wixsite.com/soprano
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DAXc3gyXJ24

Voice

Crystal Taber

German-born soprano, Crystal Marie is a thriving young performer in the New England musical community. During her reign last year as Ms. Maine 2018, she was named a top 10 finalist in Boston’s 2017 American Idol auditions. She has been seen in local productions of Fiddler on the Roof, Music Man, and countless music venues with various local bands. In 2016, she held a residency at Portland’s Studio 55, Portland House of Music and Events, and a Queen tribute band as a vocalist.

A graduate of Boston University’s Vocal Performance program, Crystal performed at Boston Symphony Hall with the BU Symphonic Choir under Dr. Ann Howard Jones and in the Marsh Chapel Choir. She made her professional Jordan Hall debut in 2009 as a soloist. She also performed in operas and opera scenes. An avid performer of all genres of music, Crystal sings in open mics around New England and has even sung the National Anthem for a Celtics game at the Toyota Center in Houston, TX. She is an active volunteer around the New England community and performs at charity functions and festivals such as the WE Believe Conference in St. John, New Brunswick.

Crystal currently coaches private vocal lessons, acting, and basic music theory for students of all ages from ages. She recently joined both Eric Grant Band and Sugah Rush as the lead vocalist. Her latest project is writing an album with her “drama pop” duo, Sweet Thieves, projected to be released in late Spring 2019. An avid fitness and health junkie, she believes that a healthy body and mind are invaluable for all singers. She is known for incorporating movement into her lessons and performances. Her specialties include coaching breathing techniques, movement, singing in various languages, harmonies, acting, and last but not least, maintaining a healthy voice.

guitar/bass, composition, songwriting, music theory

Jim Dozet

piano, composition/music theory, Jazz Institute

Mike Effenberger

saxophone, composition, music theory

Russ Grazier

trumpet, piano, composition

Chris Klaxton

piano, percussion, drumming, composition

Jonny Peiffer

guitar, electric bass, ukulele, recording technology

Nick Phaneuf

guitar/bass, composition, songwriting, music theory

Jim Dozet

Jim attended the University of New Hampshire, where he studied under David Newsam. After graduating from UNH, he studied privately with renowned Berklee professor Bruce Bartlett (Billy Cobham, Chick Corea, John Blackwell) in Boston, MA. He has taught locally for the past 20 years both privately and at local music stores. Jim has taught master classes in funk guitar styles at S.Y.M.S (Summer Youth Music School) and makes regular appearances at UNH giving lectures and running clinics for the guitar students there. In addition to guitar studies Jim also offers lessons in music theory, composition, and songwriting. While maintaining a busy teaching schedule, Jim performs regularly, both locally and regionally with various groups. In his 20 years as a professional/performing musician Jim has performed various styles ranging from funk, blues, jazz, hip hop, rock, and acoustic/singer-songwriter. Jim has performed at the Bonnaroo music festival and opened for acts such as Soulive, George Clinton, Robert Randolph, and The Roots. He lives in South Berwick, ME with his wife Alex. Learn more about Jim at his website JimDozetMusic.com and Jim’s Public Facebook Page, Jim Dozet Music

Education:B.M. in Jazz Performance, University of New Hampshire

piano, composition/music theory, Jazz Institute

Mike Effenberger

Mike Effenberger is a recording and performing artist who has been living in the Seacoast since 2007. He received the Young Beacon in Jazz award from New School University in New York City, from which he graduated in 2005. Mike plays throughout New England with a variety of bands including Jazzputin and the Jug Skunks, the secular gospel choir Rock My Soul, OURBIGBAND, Dan Blakeslee, and many others, along with leading Weird Turn Pro in playing his original music. He plays nationally with Soggy Po’ Boys and internationally with Bing and Ruth. He appears on countless recordings, from independent releases to larger labels, including RVNG International and 4AD, and is also active as a producer.

Education:B.M. in Jazz Performance, New School University

saxophone, composition, music theory

Russ Grazier

Co-Founder of PMAC, Executive Director – Composer and saxophonist Russ Grazier, Jr. is a native of Portsmouth, NH and has taught saxophone, composition, and music theory for over 25 years. In 2002 he co-founded PMAC with his wife Katie and mentor Wendell Purrington. In the years leading up to the creation of PMAC he taught at some of the most prestigious music schools in the country including Boston Conservatory, Roosevelt University (Chicago), the University of Chicago College, the New England Conservatory Preparatory School, and the Merit School of Music (Chicago). Russ has been composer-in-residence with Chicago’s CUBE Ensemble, and his music has been performed by the Contemporary Chamber Players of Chicago, the West End String Quartet, CUBE, Voices from the Heart, Duo Fujin, and many other ensembles and soloists. Russ was named 2016 Arts Advocate of the Year by New Hampshire Citizens for the Arts and is a past president of Art-Speak, the cultural commission for the city of Portsmouth, where he lives with his wife, Katie, and their two sons, Max and Jake.

Education:B.M. in Composition (with Saxophone Concentration), Boston Conservatory; M.M. in Composition, Peabody Conservatory; Graduate Composition Studies at the University of Chicago

trumpet, piano, composition

Chris Klaxton

Chris has studied trumpet under Dr. Clark Terry (Duke Ellington Orchestra, Count Basie Orchestra, Tonight Show Orchestra), Dr. Robert Stibler, Jason Carder (Ray Charles Orchestra, Maria Schneider Orchestra), and Brian Lynch (Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, Horace Silver, Eddie Palmieri), as well as recently studying composition with Dave Douglas and renowned film composer and trumpeter,Terence Blanchard (Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers). Teaching throughout New Hampshire, Chris has held a studio of both trumpet and piano students for over 12 years. In addition to teaching private instrumental lessons, Chris is also available for improvisation instruction for students of any age/level/instrument. As a performer in the Seacoast area over the last 10 years, Chris can be found in groups of varying styles ranging from jazz, bluegrass, and hip hop to indie rock and classical music.

Education:B.A. in Classical Trumpet Performance, University of New Hampshire; M.M. in Jazz Trumpet Performance, University of Miami

piano, percussion, drumming, composition

Jonny Peiffer

Jonny has been performing in and out of the Seacoast since 1997. He studied jazz piano with Mark Shilansky, classical piano with Arlene Kies, and composition with Mike Annicchiarico at UNH. Jonny teaches students of all ages and backgrounds. He specializes in various Latin piano styles as well as jazz, classical, funk/R&B, and more. He also encourages all of his students to compose music of their own. Jonny founded the Spotlight Award-winning jazz septet Sojoy in 2014 and has since recorded two albums of all original compositions with the group (sojoymusic.com). Jonny has composed music for theatrical productions at W.E.S.T.; Prescott Park Arts Festival; The Dance Hall, Kittery; and Dance Theatre Workshop, NYC. He co-founded several other projects in the area, including Shango Afro-beat orchestra, Desert Island Live (performing full-length albums of Tom Waits and Joni Mitchell), and Soundbody (a yoga, meditation, and music collaboration). Learn more at jonnypeiffer.com and follow him on Facebook @jonnypeiffermusic.

Education: B.A. in Music Performance, University of New Hampshire

guitar, electric bass, ukulele, recording technology

Nick Phaneuf

Nick Phaneuf performs throughout the East Coast with bands Soggy Po Boys, NOVEL / NOVELLA, Dan Blakeslee and the Calabash Club, and fiveighthirteen. He has taught at PMAC since 2008 as a private instructor, music technology teacher and co-director of the PMAC rock band program. He is also an adjunct faculty member at Phillips Exeter Academy teaching music technology. Nick lives in Barrington, NH with his wife Michaela, his son Winter, and their dog Aquaman.

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