Emily Beck has been teaching private music lessons since 2000, and in schools since 2007. She earned a Bachelor's Degree in Speech Communication as well as a Piano Pedagogy Certificate from Northern Kentucky University and then a Master's Degree in Education with emphasis in Music from Xavier University. When Emily is not at the studio, she enjoys spending time with her family, especially outdoors!
John Bertke is an accomplished, professional drummer who has been playing for well over 20 years. He regularly performs live at venues around the city and has toured coast to coast as well as internationally. He has a great deal of recording experience with exposure reaching national TV. John has been teaching privately and working with marching percussion groups since 2003. His teaching skills range from basic drumming to multiple styles of drum set percussion to specializing in marching snare/tenor/bass drum. He has worked with many Cincinnati high schools, including Elder, Sycamore, Turpin, and Madeira.
Rachel Bystry studied piano pedagogy at Northern Kentucky University and has been living out her passion for music by teaching as well as accompanying various choirs, small ensembles, and soloists. For the past 20 years, she has been teaching students of all ages throughout the greater Cincinnati area. Her favorite age groups are teens and adults, but younger children are also a ton of fun, and she loves to watch her students grow as musicians.
Rachel believes that students learn in many different ways, and she strives to bring new material and a fun perspective to each one of her students. She loves to incorporate traditional note reading, improvising using chord charts, composing, music theory, and ear training into her lessons. She also believes that each student needs to practice in order to get better at their craft- "You will only be as good as the effort you put forth."
Rachel is eager to join Madcap Education Center and share her love of music with others!
Spencer is excited to join the team at ETB! He graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 2021 with a degree in Secondary Education and now teaches at a local middle school in Cincinnati. He plays guitar and bass in several local bands. In his free time, Spencer likes to record music both solo and with his bands. He also likes to explore different restaurants, stores and parks in Cincinnati!
Nick Federinko has been making and experiencing music his whole life. Raised on the classics, seeking comfort in oldies and 90's radio, music has always been crucial to getting through life’s ups and downs. At fourteen, he had the urge to pick up a guitar, and what was supposed to be a side hobby ended up catapulting him into many exciting activities: youth group band, jazz band, pit orchestra, traveling internationally with marching band, and, finally, leading a band through covers and originals. A transplant from Michigan (fear not, he roots for the Buckeyes), Nick’s studies in English and religion took him from Ada, Ohio, to a Methodist seminary north of Columbus, to Cincinnati in search of an exciting and meaningful life.
Today, Nick has found that meaning through playing in multiple bands and teaching. He wants to help others find new kinds of joy and affirmation through music. No matter your skill level or favorite music, he will help you enrich your life and your spirit through musical expression. Nick mostly listens to the classics and alternative rock- preferably on vinyl- but is currently exploring jazz and hip hop. He relishes the chance to play any and every style, from vintage-flavored rock, to pop reggae, to neo soul, to the occasional praise song. In addition to teaching and playing music, Nick does audio/video work, including the ETB Music “Tiny Desk” videos, church communications, and social media.
Sarah Gorak (Schmidt) began her musical journey in her elementary school orchestra program in Renton, Washington. In 2013, she graduated from Central Washington University (CWU) with a Bachelor’s of Music Education and her K-12 teaching certification with specializations in Instrumental, Choral, and General Music.
Sarah has filled many music instructor roles over the years with as young as preschoolers to retired adults. She was an active staff member in the CWU Preparatory Strings program and she was nominated as employee of the year in 2012. She has taught at many studios such as Queen City Music Studio, Immanuel School of Music, Tallant Music Studio, Arches of Oak Hills, and Reading Community Arts Center. She also enjoys performing for preschool/early childhood classrooms.
Sarah strongly believes in being a lifelong student so she enjoys pursuing learning other fiddle styles, jazz/improvisation, and other instruments. She has attended alternative strings styles workshops including Creative Strings Workshop, Rustic Roots, Fiddle Hell, and Strings Without Boundaries. She has studied with international qualifying jazz cellist Greg Byers and is actively studying with improvising extraordinare Rob Flax since 2017.
Sarah is also currently active in the local music scene playing solo singer songwriter sets of violin looping and heartfelt ukulele songs. She also collaborates in several band projects varying from bluegrass to hip hop to rock bands. She also enjoys playing weddings with her husband, violist Peter Gorak (Kentucky Symphony; Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra).
Jeannine holds a Piano Pedagogy Degree from the College of Mount Saint Joseph where she studied piano with Atarah Jablonsky. She studied music history and theory with Rev. Angelo della Picca. While earning her degree, Jeannine won awards for Academic Merit, taught Piano in the college’s Community Music Center, and tutored fellow students in Theory.
In addition to Classical piano, Jeannine studied “Popular” piano with Frank Wolff. Phil deGreg taught her Jazz chord voicings, and occasionally Jeannine sings with Phil and his trio.
During her college years, Jeannine also taught piano for Buddy Roger’s Music, where she won several teaching awards, including Teacher of The Year. After being selected for training by the Yamaha Corporation, Jeannine became head of the Music Instruction division of Willis Music, where she taught group piano lessons to students ranging from age 4 to adult. In addition, Jeannine conducted keyboard ensembles during rehearsals and emceed the Yamaha Clavinova Festival, featuring 24 Clavinova instruments being played all at once.
Later Jeannine directed the Handbell Choir, and was assistant to the Parish Music Minister of St Ignatius church and school. Jeannine also played and sang Masses and conducted the Women’s Ensemble and the contemporary music groups there.
The Jeannine Groh Trio, Quartet, and Quintet has been heard at many of the finest Tri –State venues, including the prestigious Horseshoe Casino (now called Hard Rock) in the elegant steakhouse, the Diamond Lounge, and the Ballrooms. Also a Jazz singer, Jeannine has played solo performances.
Although Jeannine’s groups often play the “Great American Songbook” classics of the Big Band Swing Era, Jeannine loves to perform Latin Jazz and some Pop as well. She began performing gigs at age 12 with her parents' group. Her dad was a Jazz Harmonica player, her mom a cocktail set drummer, and both sang well.
With all of these performance and teaching experiences, Jeannine is competent teaching many different styles of music, and has many” tricks of the trade” to teach any piano student.
Ben Huhn is a drum teacher at ETBMusic and Fine Arts Center. He has been playing drums since 2010 and currently plays in a hard rock band. He has a passion for the music he plays. He teaches drumline percussion and drum set. Ben was Elder Percussion section leader for two years and has participated in Marching Band, Indoor Drumline, Steel Drum Band, Pep Band, and the Stage/Jazz Band. He also has experience playing different live gigs from Grade School Festivals to Battle of the Bands competitions.
Yun-Huei Jen is a double bassist and pianist from Taiwan. She
began studying double bass and piano at the age of 4, and has 4 years
experience teaching students of all ages and abilities in the U.S. After
receiving her bachelor degree in Taiwan, in order to pursue a more
professional education in music, Yun-Huei began her studies in the U.S
at University of North Texas in 2017. She received her Masters degree
in performance at University of North Texas studying with Dr. Gudrun
Raschen. She also earned a Graduate Artist Certificate degree in
double bass performance, where she was a student of Jeff
Bradetich. She is now pursuing her second year of Doctoral studies at
University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.
She won a number of international competitions while studying
at UNT including UNT Concerto competition, the 2021 International
Fringe Competition held in Hong Kong, 2nd prize of the online double
bass competition, and honorable mention of the Progressive Musicians
Competition. She received a full scholarship to attend the Heartland
Chamber Music Festival and the Vancouver Symphony Summer Festival.
Marissa is a student at Seton High School who loves to be involved with music! She started playing clarinet for Elder's grade school band and is currently playing for the marching band, pep band and concert band at Elder High School. She also has experience playing with Elder's percussion ensemble and steel drum band. Marissa enjoys playing piano and still takes lessons at ETB. She is happy to offer piano and clarinet lessons to beginners!
Alison Shepard loves to make art and empower students to pursue their creative dreams! With over 25 years of teaching experience, Alison has taught children, teens, and adults of all ages.
Alison holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Norther Kentucky University and a Master of Fine Arts from Miami University. She also studied Printmaking in Mallorca and Classical Realist Drawing in Barcelona, Spain. Alison was an art professor from 2004-2014, and has been working as a full-time artist for the last 7 years. Learning from Alison is an opportunity to receive a college-level education from an experienced artist at a fraction of the cost. Alison is able to offer a depth of technical training in painting and drawing to take your talents to the next level!
When Alison isn’t teaching, you may find her singing with her brother, Carl Shepard, in their band, entheos, or playing music with Carl and John Bertke in MixTape, or making art and murals with her husband, Evan Hildebrandt. Alison has also recently published a children’s book, Millie the Monarch, and is offering children’s curriculum and workshops that will inspire the whole family!
Carl G grew up knowing music was going to be his path in life in a little community called Sayler Park. Both he and his sister Alison followed the arts as a career choice and have composed music together in a band called entheos. Carl received a certificate in Sound Engineering in 2003 from the Recording Workshop and worked for Cincinnati Recreation Commission as a sound engineer on Fountain Square and the P & G Pavillion. While taking lessons at Keller Music in 2006, he was offered a job teaching guitar. In addition to Keller Music, he has worked for Mehas Music, and the School of Rock as a Vocal, Guitar and Bass instructor.
Justin VanWagenen studied Music Education and Jazz Drumset performance Cincinnati Conservatory of Music (CCM), and also earned a Bachelors degree in Marking from the University of Cincinnati. He has over 15 years of experience with not only playing, but recording music. Justin has experience with a variety of instruments including drums, piano, guitar and bass. He plays and records with several local bands of varying genres. Justin has previously taught at Western Brown High Schol, Guitar Center, and School of Rock
Mary White has recently retired as a Music Teacher of 41 years. Her last teaching post was the Music Director at Mercy McAuley High School. She is so excited to join the staff at ETB, which will allow her to continue to share her love of music with others. In her new “retired chapter” she knows she will enjoy spending time with her husband, grown children and grandchildren. Her hobbies include cooking, gardening, and travel.