Music Teachers

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

Meet our Music Teachers

Hi, I'm Toby

Guitar, Bass Guitar & Piano Teacher

A New York City native and graduate of the Manhattan School of Music, guitarist and composer Toby is the author of dozens of instructional books and articles for Cherry Lane Music Publishing. In his late teens he began working as a freelance arranger and composer for a variety of ensembles, and as a performer in both sideman and bandleader capacities.

He has appeared at venues such as Joe’s Pub, the Cutting Room, Rockwood Music Hall, Birdland, Visiones, the Nuyorican Poet’s Cafe, and many others. Toby spent three years as music librarian for the Carnegie Hall Jazz Band, worked behind the scenes preparing scores for avant garde jazz icon Ornette Coleman, and has served as arranger and musical director for numerous jazz and cabaret vocalists. His writing can be heard on albums by Philip Harper (Muse), Ari Ambrose (Steeplechase) and Ian Hendrickson-Smith of the Roots (Sharp Nine), among others.

For the last decade, Toby served as Director of Programs at Church Street School for Music & Art, a major community arts organization in lower Manhattan. His studies have included work with Bob Mover, Edward Green, and the late jazz greats Walter Davis Jr., Manny Albam, and Bern Nix.

Hi, I'm Lauren

Voice & Piano Teacher

Lauren is a native NYer and a maven to the digital ways of making art. She began teaching music in 2018 and is excited to be a part of the team at Music Notes Academy. Next to performing, teaching is her next greatest passion and the best way to learn is to do! Her musical background is compromised of musical theater, opera, and pop/rock music. Her students have gone on to participate in Wingspan Arts Theater Conservatory in NYC, iPop in Los Angeles, LaGuardia School of the Arts, Professional Performing Arts School while adult professionals have worked on various cruise lines and regional theatres around the world. Lauren has a BFA in Musical Theatre from SUNY Fredonia.

Hi, I'm Sean

Music Teacher

Sean, a Music Notes Academy ’12 award-winning NJSBDC music teacher, holds a bachelor’s degree in Music Education from The College of NJ and a master’s degree in Music Scoring and Composition from Academy of Art University in San Francisco, Ca.

An experienced teacher of strings, piano, woodwinds and brass, Sean is additionally a conductor and composer of merit with seven completed symphonies.

His arrangements have been performed by schools, community orchestras, chamber ensembles, soloists and appeared in independent films. Sean has been a music teacher at Music Notes Academy since ’09 and created our Music Notes’ TiedNotes Classes.

Hi, I'm Deborah

Piano Teacher

Ms. Deborah has been teaching music for over twenty years. Her education includes musical training at Esther Boyer College of Music at Temple University (BA) and Boston University (MA). Deborah’s love of children and passion for teaching enables her to bring out the very best in each student. We are thrilled to have Ms. Deborah join Music Notes Academy for School Year ’23-’24.

Hi, I'm Stella

Voice & Piano Teacher

Stella is a highly motivated and energetic voice teacher and music educator for more than 20 years. She graduated summa cum laude in Music Performance at Kyunghee University in Seoul, Korea, attended Mannes School of Music in New York City and graduated Montclair University in New Jersey with a Masters Degree in Music Performance.

She has been teaching music at St. Thomas the Apostle School since ’16 and has been singing on major stages in the metro area such as Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall and Madison Square Garden. Stella also has been part of the prestigious group, New York Choral Society since ’03. She recently completed the Dalcroz Eurythmics for Children Comprehensive Training Program at Lucy Moses School in Kaufman Music Center in New York City.

Stella continues to train, coach and mentor singers of all ages and levels. Her students have been part of numerous auditions and have performed on main stages such as Lincoln Center and a Carnegie Hall. Stella is a committed and dedicated music educator for those with a serious passion for music.

Hi, I'm Justin

Piano Teacher

Mr. Justin is a classically trained pianist. He has earned a Bachelor’s of Music in piano from Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ. Justin has a passion for music and plays various styles which includes classical, pop, jazz and gospel. He enjoys improvisation and music composition.

Justin has performed with the Bernards Ensemble at the Arc Angel Gala in Bridgewater, NJ. He also performed and accompanied many Westminster Choirs and performed as lead pianist at a Piano Concerto Concert with the Westminster Community Orchestra.

Justin is the accompanist where he leads the music ministry at multiple church services. He is also a music consultant for The Arc of Somerset County. Justin’s experience as a piano instructor began in 2019 where he taught individuals on a one-to-one basis. Justin’s student roster has included individuals with various disabilities which included down syndrome and autism. He understands that people learn differently and he learns from every person he teaches. Justin actively continues to volunteer his services in the community.

Hi, I'm Brandon

Music Teacher

Since ’00, Brandon Kurzawa has prepared students for college music auditions, music assessments, exams and performances. Brandon studied at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, has a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Rutgers University and a Masters of Arts in Education, specializing in curriculum, instruction and computer education.
Recording credits include drums on Ansel Matthews’ Raised From The Dust and drums and percussion on John Sonntag’s ’06 release Chasing Stars. Brandon recorded and toured nationally with rock bands and singer-songwriters, an active performer from ’97 through ’09, Brandon performed with solo artists, trios and quartets, wedding bands and rock bands throughout the New York metropolitan area.
Publications include “Teaching Music, Teaching Percussion: A Balance in Curriculum” and “Teaching Music” Music Majors, Choose Education” which were published in Tempo Magazine in ’06 and ’07. A Vic Firth, Inc. educational endorser, Shine Custom Drums sponsored artist and Remo Health Rhythms Drum Circle facilitator, Brandon instructed music at Rutgers University, Kean University and was an adjunct professor of audio engineering and music production at Gibbs College. He taught college classes in Apple’s GarageBand, Reason, Logic Studio, and Pro Tools to audio engineering and music technology majors.
Brandon honorably accepted Music Notes Academy’s NJSBDC Success Award in 2012 on behalf of Music Notes Academy’s staff of dedicated teachers.
Voice, Piano Teacher East Brunswick, NJ

Hi, I'm Joseph

Voice & Piano Teacher

Mr. Joseph is a graduate of Westminster Choir College of Rider University with a B.M. and M.M.E. in Music Education.

Specializing in voice and piano, Joseph has been studying music since the eighth grade and has devoted his life to music. Joseph has experience with both high school and collegiate choir ensembles.

Joseph has performed in numerous musical theater productions and has experience in arts managerial positions where he was secretary for a cappella groups at Westminster.

Aside from music, Joseph enjoys watching movies and TV with his wife and their two dogs, Loki and Sylvie. We are delighted to have Joseph join Music Notes Academy.

Guitar Teacher, East Brunswick, NJ

Hi, I'm Mykola

Guitar & Piano Teacher

Bio Coming Soon…

Guitar Teacher at Music Notes Academy, East Brunswick, NJ

Hi, I'm Stephanie

Guitar & Brass Teacher

Stephanie’s love for music began when she started playing guitar in fourth grade. Her passion inspired her to study music education, and she has been teaching music to students of all ages both in the private and public school settings for over ten years.

In addition to teaching, Stephanie is involved with music in other ways. She is a performer of classical, jazz, and rock music in addition to musical theater productions. She also has experience managing national tours for a youth music education organization.

Stephanie has earned a Bachelor of Music from the University of Delaware and a Master of Music from the University of Florida.

Hi, I'm Ben

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Hi, I'm Bryan

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As teachers, we incorporate our own educational approach to Music Notes Academy’s general curriculum. Throughout the day, students can range from five to seventy-five years old. Along with what we’re teaching, we like students to be able to explore on their own. I enjoy teaching through creating. It’s an exciting, healthy challenge for me and my students.

Teaching at Music Notes Academy


Teachers at Music Notes Academy usually begin as part-time. Growth opportunities to full-time are available. Teachers have the opportunity to additionally become department heads, chairpersons and introduce new music classes for students.


Music Notes Academy teachers are paid for all student absences, late cancellations and student no-shows. This is the way it should be. Your time and dedication to Music Notes Academy is valued. Students can attend a group make-up class.


We all work together here. Although we spend most of our time teaching music in separate classrooms, it's a collaborative effort towards comprehensive instruction and curricular development for our students.


Unlimited purchasing of sheet music, music books, instrument accessories and instruments that Music Notes Academy sells. Teachers pay what Music Notes Academy pays, plus NJ sales tax.

Join Music Notes Academy

Make a difference. Teach music. Our teachers are employees (not independent contractors) with competitive compensation, growth opportunities, and retirement plans with employer contributions.

Looking to join our team of award-winning teachers?