School of Rock

Explore School of Rock


School of Rock Kirkwood
104 N Kirkwood Road
Kirkwood, MO 63122
(314) 394-1994

Location Specifics

We're located right across the train tracks near the farmer's market at cross street Argonne.

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  • Monday: 3 PM - 9 PM
  • Tuesday: 3 PM - 9 PM
  • Wednesday: 3 PM - 9 PM
  • Thursday: 3 PM - 9 PM
  • Friday: 3 PM - 8 PM
  • Saturday: 10 AM - 3:30 PM
  • Sunday: Closed

Music programs at School of Rock Kirkwood combine one-on-one lessons with group band practices

Programs we offer

Little Wing music program for toddlers and preschoolers
Little Wing
Ages 3-5

At School of Rock Kirkwood our Little Wing music program for preschoolers and toddlers teaches students foundational music skills by playing games and participating in other interactive musical activities. Little Wing students have one weekly group music lesson in which they use classic rock songs to learn about rhythm, song structure, melody and dynamics through play.

What To Expect

The Path to Take the Stage

The Little Wing music program is the first step in a young musician's journey. At School of Rock Kirkwood, toddlers and preschoolers who show an interest in music should start with Little Wing. As they get older, they will progress into the Rookies program, followed by Rock 101 and the Performance Program.

Rookies music program for children
Ages 5-8

At School of Rock Kirkwood, our music program for children with no previous musical experience (typically ages 5 to 8-years-old) is called Rookies. Rookies students have one weekly group music lesson where they learn fundamentals like chords, rhythm and song structure. Kids get to learn and experiment with multiple instruments so they can later decide which one they ultimately want to continue pursuing in Rock 101.

What To Expect

The Path to Take the Stage

All of our music programs are designed to inspire students to learn and develop a strong musical proficiency. At School of Rock Kirkwood, younger students who are not ready for a more comprehensive program like Rock 101 can start in Rookies. No prior musical experience is needed for Rookies. Once your child is ready for private music lessons (typically older than first or second graders), they will graduate into our Rock 101 program.

Rock 101 music program for kids and beginners
Rock 101
Ages 7-13

Rock 101 is one of School of Rock Kirkwood's top programs for kids and beginners. Students have one weekly group rehearsal where they learn to play classic rock songs that have been simplified for beginner musicians. Additionally, Rock 101 students in Kirkwood have a weekly private music lesson with an instructor who helps them learn the concepts and skills behind their performance songs.

What To Expect

The Path to Take the Stage

Our music programs for kids in Kirkwood are designed to get students on stage performing, with the goal of building strong musical proficiency. Younger students at School of Rock Kirkwood who have participated in the Rookies program can move to our Rock 101 music program once they’re ready. Additionally, students (typically ages 7 to 13-years-old) can begin Rock 101 without any prior experience. The goal of this rock program is to quickly develop a basic competence on students’ chosen instruments before moving on to our famous Performance Program.

Performance music program for teens
Ages 10-18

The Performance Program at School of Rock Kirkwood is our hallmark music program, where tens of thousands of students enroll each year. It consists of a weekly group rehearsal where kids and teens learn by playing rock music's most iconic songs with a band composed of their peers. Students are assigned songs and parts that are tailored to them based on their age, experience and ability to learn new skills and concepts. Students then work through their parts in weekly private music lessons, refining the skills and concepts that those songs introduce. The goal of this curriculum is to prepare kids and teens for live performances. Every few months, School of Rock Kirkwood Performance Program students take the stage and play at local Kirkwood music venues in front of a live audience.

What To Expect

The Path to Take the Stage

School of Rock Kirkwood's music programs for kids and teens are designed to inspire by getting students on stage and performing. All of our other music education programs focus on readying students for our famous Performance Program. This is where students develop incredible musical skills. Performance Program students have often gone through our Rock 101 program first or have some previous basic music experience. These young musicians will have custom development plans outlined by their instructors with key concepts reinforced during private lessons and group rehearsals, all with the goal of performing live at a Kirkwood music venue.

Adult music program for students over 18
Adult Program
Ages 18+

School of Rock Kirkwood's Adult Program is for students over 18 years old who are looking to either improve their musical proficiency or pick up an instrument with no prior musical experience. As with most School of Rock music programs, the Adult Program uses a performance-based music education approach. This means the curriculum focuses on learning music concepts and applying them in a live performance setting. Our Adult Music Program includes one weekly private music lesson and a weekly group rehearsal. Every student at School of Rock Kirkwood is placed in a band of fellow adults and then assigned specific songs as a way of learning key music concepts and skills. Adult students then take the stage to play at a live show in Kirkwood.

What To Expect

The Path to Take the Stage

All of our music programs are designed to inspire by getting students on stage and performing, with the goal of building strong musical proficiency along the way. The School of Rock Kirkwood Adult Program is open to all experience levels and each student will follow a customized learning plan developed by their instructor. Adult students will work together during rehearsal to prepare for a live performance at a real rock venue in Kirkwood.

House Band program for gigging at local venues around town
House Band
Ages 10-18

The School of Rock Kirkwood House Band music program gives students under 18 the opportunity to join a gigging band composed of fellow musicians from their school. These students perform additional live shows throughout the year. All students in the Performance Program have the opportunity to audition for a spot in School of Rock Kirkwood's House Band. Once selected, House Band members become leaders in their School of Rock community and perform live shows at MO rock venues throughout the year.

What To Expect

The Path to Take the Stage

Performance is the core of School of Rock's educational approach. Therefore, we create additional opportunities for students to perform on stages throughout Kirkwood and the rest of MO. The House Band music program allows each school's most talented students the opportunity to join a band and play routinely in front of live audiences. Once a member, students will gain real music experience associated with gigging musicians and will become leaders and mentors inside the School of Rock community.

The AllStars national tour features the best child and teen musicians
Age 17 and Under

The School of Rock AllStars Tour takes the very best students from around the world and sends them on a nationwide summer tour across the United States. Less than 1% of School of Rock students are selected each year to represent School of Rock as an AllStar. All Performance Program students are eligible to audition for this prestigious program. The intensive audition process starts off with video submissions followed by live auditions. Once selected, AllStar students will have an authentic touring experience including traveling on a tour bus, doing tour publicity and starring in nightly performances at famous venues and festivals during a two-week tour.

What To Expect

The Path to Take the Stage

Becoming an AllStar is the highest level of achievement for a School of Rock student. They play on legendary stages large and small, including The Knitting Factory, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, The Troubadour and Lollapalooza. AllStar students often go on to have accomplished careers in the music industry. Former AllStars have gone on to become touring artists, star in Broadway musicals, get signed to record deals, become finalists on talent competitions like "The Voice" and "American Idol" and have other notable roles in the music industry.

Center Stage Program Picture
Center Stage
Ages 13-19

The Center Stage Artist Search Program is an opportunity to be heard by a major record label. Singers from the ages of 13-19 can submit an audition video as part of the selection process. Selected artists will then have the chance to participate in a studio recording session, and perform at a live artist showcase with record label executives in Los Angeles. We'll also provide School of Rock songwriting camp scholarships for 100 applicants. Submit your video audition today.

What to expect
  • A live artist showcase in front of record executives
  • Record in a state-of-the-art major label studio

The Path to Take the Stage

The music of legendary recording artists can be the inspiration behind many School of Rock students’ drive to pick up an instrument for the first time. This music is the foundation of our curriculum because it helps maintain young musician’s drive to gain musical proficiency. Center Stage is a program to help usher in the next generation of great artists that will one day inspire others to begin their musical journey.

Music Lessons in Kirkwood

Kid learns to play guitar at School of Rock

Guitar Lessons for All Skill Levels

Beginner Guitar Lessons for Kids

At School of Rock Kirkwood, we offer beginner guitar lessons for kids. Our expert guitar instructors guide your child from start to finish with private instruction and weekly group band rehearsals. Every instructor at School of Rock Kirkwood is an experienced musician, and they emphasize foundational music theory and technique when teaching guitar lessons to kids. Unlike other Kirkwood guitar lessons and programs, School of Rock is designed to get students performing in a band.

Beginner Guitar Lessons for Adults

It’s never too late to learn to play the guitar. Similar to our kids guitar lessons, School of Rock Kirkwood's beginner guitar lessons for adults utilizes a performance-based curriculum. Our experienced instructors teach adult students through popular rock songs, and teach students to play guitar in a way that’s challenging and fun. We believe the best way to learn is by doing, which is why we combine weekly private guitar lessons with group band rehearsals. At School of Rock Kirkwood, we teach beginner guitar lessons for adults in our Adult Program. This program gets students performing onstage at a local Kirkwood venue.

Key Concepts
  • Technique
  • Solos
  • Chords
  • Theory

Intermediate to Advanced Guitar Lessons

As students gain skills and experience, we move them along to more challenging programs at higher skill levels. Intermediate and advanced students take the skills they learned in beginner guitar lessons, and layer on more difficult techniques and concepts. School of Rock Kirkwood offers advanced guitar lessons for kids and adults that teach by playing challenging classic rock songs and emphasize playing the guitar in a real music venue. Our Kirkwood guitar teachers will work with each student to develop a custom learning plan.

Kids learn to drum at School of Rock

Drum Lessons for All Skill Levels

Beginner Drum Lessons for Kids

School of Rock Kirkwood is the best option for anyone looking to learn the drums. Our beginner drum lessons get kids behind the drum kit and on their way to taking the stage. That’s why at School of Rock Kirkwood we combine private drum lessons for beginners with weekly band rehearsals—it prepares students to perform live. With years of experience teaching drums in Kirkwood, our drum instructors teach beginner drum students core techniques, including how to groove, play rudiments and more.

Beginner Drum Lessons for Adults

Our drum lessons for adults are designed to accommodate all skill levels. At School of Rock Kirkwood, our beginner drum lessons for adults are built for musicians with little to no experience. We teach adults using the same core performance-based education philosophy as our drum lessons for kids—performing with a band accelerates the learning process. Adult students will perform live at a venue in Kirkwood. Unlike other Kirkwood drum lessons for beginners, School of Rock combines private drum lessons with weekly band rehearsals so students are ready to play in front of real, live audiences.

Key Concepts

Intermediate to Advanced Drum Lessons

More experienced to advanced drum students need a drum lesson curriculum that builds upon foundational skills and continues to grow musical proficiency. That’s why at School of Rock Kirkwood, our drum lessons are customized for each student and his or her goals. Our Kirkwood drum instructors integrate more complex techniques and concepts—intermediary grooves, shifts, meters and more—into a student's individual lessons and group band rehearsal, and will also select more difficult songs for his or her live performances.


Kid learns to sing at School of Rock

Singing Lessons for All Skill Levels

Beginner Singing Lessons for Kids

School of Rock Kirkwood offers beginner singing lessons for kids. Our unique, performance-based approach develops students' musical proficiency by preparing them to perform live. At School of Rock Kirkwood, our vocal coaches are practicing musicians who integrate key music fundamentals—breathing, posture and more—into a curriculum based on performing with a band. Each week, beginner singing students participate in a private singing lesson and a band rehearsal.

Beginner Singing Lessons for Adults

School of Rock Kirkwood teaches adults how to sing in our innovative Adult Program. Students develop vocal skills at a challenging pace designed to help you see results with every singing lesson. Adult vocalists learn how to keep tempo, stay on-key and master advanced vocal techniques for a powerful and healthy voice. Our curriculum teaches students how to sing by using popular rock songs that emphasize key concepts. Each week, Adult Program students have a private singing lesson for beginners and group band rehearsal.

Key Concepts

Intermediate to Advanced Singing Lessons

At School of Rock Kirkwood, our singing lessons for kids and adults are designed to help our students reach a high degree of musical proficiency. Intermediate and advanced singers take skills learned from previous singing lessons and layer on more difficult techniques and concepts. Our advanced singing lessons teach students to sing by performing popular rock songs that illustrate a specific vocal concept or technique. We pair weekly private singing lessons with weekly band rehearsals with the goal of getting musicians to perform live in Kirkwood.

Kid learns to play bass at School of Rock

Bass Lessons for All Skill Levels

Beginner Bass Lessons for Kids

School of Rock Kirkwood offers beginner bass guitar lessons for kids that blend weekly private instruction with weekly band rehearsals. This performance-based approach results in a high level of musical proficiency because it engages and inspires students. Every School of Rock bass instructor is a practicing musician in Kirkwood and teaches bass lessons for kids that get great results. Beginners learn to play bass guitar by using popular rock songs that illustrate key concepts and techniques.

Beginner Bass Lessons for Adults

Adults looking to learn bass guitar can enroll in School of Rock’s Adult Program. No experience is necessary in our beginner bass guitar lessons for adults. At School of Rock Kirkwood, our experienced, local bass guitar instructors have the patience and skills to help adult students gain musical proficiency. As with all School of Rock music programs, our bass guitar lessons for adults ciriculum is performance-based, and include both weekly private instruction and weekly band rehearsals.

Key Concepts
  • TONE

Intermediate to Advanced Bass Lessons

Our intermediate to advanced bass guitar lessons teach Kirkwood students the skills they need to become the backbone of a band. Students take skills from previous bass lessons and layer on more difficult techniques and concepts. At School of Rock Kirkwood, our bass instructors use popular rock songs as a way of teaching students advanced concepts and techniques. We pair weekly private bass lessons with weekly band rehearsals to inspire and engage students throughout the learning process.

Kid learns to play piano at School of Rock

Keyboard Lessons for All Skill Levels

Beginner Keyboard Lessons for Kids

At School of Rock we teach differently than other music schools in Kirkwood. Our curriculum is performance-based, meaning that we prepare students to perform. Our piano lessons for beginners combine weekly private instruction with weekly band rehearsals. At School of Rock Kirkwood, our beginner keyboard lessons for kids take key concepts and music fundamentals—finger placement, scales, key differentiation and more—and teach them through popular rock songs. This approach inspires and engages students, which results in attaining a high level of musical proficiency. Our piano teachers have years of experience teaching music in the Kirkwood area, and know how to coach and motivate students of any skill level to play the keyboard.

Beginner Keyboard Lessons for Adults

The School of Rock Kirkwood Adult Program puts beginner keyboard students in a band. Adult Program students in the Kirkwood area learn to play piano through a combination of weekly private beginner piano lessons and weekly band rehearsals. At School of Rock, our piano lessons give adult students the chance to perform in a band at local Kirkwood music venues, taking them out of the classroom and onto the stage.

Key Concepts
  • TONE

Intermediate to Advanced Keyboard Lessons

At School of Rock Kirkwood, our keyboard lessons for kids and adults are designed to help students get results. Intermediate and advanced students take skills learned from beginner keyboard lessons and layer on more advanced piano techniques with concepts. Our local keyboard instructors are all practicing musicians in Kirkwood, and use popular rock songs as a way of teaching complex skills. We pair weekly private piano lessons with weekly band rehearsals to inspire and engage students throughout the learning process.

Our Experienced Music Teachers

All of School of Rock Kirkwood’s music teachers are experienced musicians devoted to helping students attain musical proficiency. Our instructors guide students one-on-one to personalize learning, inspire confidence and build social skills.

Paul Niehaus IV Guitar Teacher, Bass Teacher, Drums Teacher, Piano Teacher, Singing Teacher

Paul Niehaus IV was born and raised in Saint Louis, MO. He first started with music in fourth grade band class by playing the trumpet. By high school he had learned the French horn, saxophone, guitar and bass. Paul received a BA in music and folklore from Truman State University in 2009. Since graduating he's toured over 45 US states playing in numerous blues-based bands, including John Nemeth and Matt Hill. He's also served on the Board of Directors for the Saint Louis Blues Society, a 501c3 non-profit, since 2013, and produced three celebrated compilation albums for the STL Blues Society, which have, since their releases, been at the #1 spot on the 88.1 KDHX charts.

Besides performing and teaching he also has a love for recording, producing and mixing/mastering. An audiophile, he has become very focused on the sonic qualities of the music he's creating or enjoying. Paul started Blue Lotus Recordings, a record label specializing in roots music (blues, soul, folk, etc.) in 2016. He runs Blue Lotus Studio from the Southampton neighborhood of South City. What Paul loves about teaching is filling in cognitive holes with succinct yet vitally important concepts, which can accelerate a student forward in their progression.

Kyle Ray Drum Teacher, Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher

Kyle Ray is a multi-instrumentalist instructor who specializes in marching/concert percussion, various drum set styles, blues/jazz/finger-style guitar and electric bass. He has been playing for 19+ years and has a background in competitive percussion. Having spent time in WGI independent marching as well as symphonic percussion mastery, he also plays in several bands in the Saint Louis area.

What Kyle enjoys most is helping students grow their technical and musical abilities by exercising the ear and various motor skills associated with their chosen instrument, as well as teaching and implementing efficient practice methods to ensure productive performance.

Pam Camp Singing Teacher

Pam Camp is a vocal instructor at School of Rock, with a background in musical theatre. She previously worked with The UAFS Academy of the Arts, a children’s arts education program. She also taught vocal performance out of her home studio.

Highlights of her music career include winning Best Female Vocalist on the Nashville Network’s “Charlie Daniels Talent Round-Up," fronting her own classic rock band The Pam Camp Band, employed as a studio demo artist for Star Traks (a national soundtracks company), performing at the Summer Series with Carrie Underwood in the “Country Music Round-Up," being the opening act for Lonestar, performing with Artimus Pyle Band (Lynyrd Skynyrd drummer) and being the founder of the Females Rock the Fort! benefit concert.

Since moving from Arkansas to St. Louis in the fall of 2013, Pam has had some amazing opportunities! She has performed at Fair St. Louis and the Pujols Prom (with Smash Band), on The Stage at KDHX and The National Blues Museum (with Kingdom Brothers), and at the newly built Delmar Hall (with Shakey Deal, a Neil Young tribute band). She looks forward to helping her students find their full potential and passion, in performing and in life.

Mark Ortmann Drum Teacher

As a founding member and drummer of the group The Bottle Rockets, Mark Ortmann has experience in the music industry as a professional musician and tour manager. Formed in 1993, the band has released 11 critically acclaimed albums. The Bottlerockets have extensively toured North America, Europe and the U.K., headlining their own shows but also touring and performing with a variety of musical peers that include John Fogerty, Lucinda Williams, Steve Earle, The Allman Brothers, Wilco, Marshall Crenshaw and many others. In addition to live shows, they've also performed as featured guests on various national broadcasts including "The Conan O'Brien Show," Mountain Stage, AudioTree, Music Fog, SiriusXM Radio and NPO Radio 2.

Mark was turned onto music at a young age when he first heard the song "S.O.S." by the group ABBA on his parent's AM car radio. But it was a drum fill in the song "Cold As Ice" by Foreigner that sparked his interest in playing drums when he was 14. Mark was lucky to have studied early on with a series of skilled teachers and has been a student of drums ever since. Playing by ear and being self taught are important aspects of learning an instrument, but a good teacher can help students develop their talents more rapidly. Mark is happy to join the instructors at School of Rock and looks forward to sharing his experiences with the students when he's off the road between his tour schedules.

Molly Simms General Manager

With a background of two years managing Euclid Records, five years traveling with vintage clothing company Donnaland Vintage Variety and ten years of playing music in Saint Louis, Molly joined the team at School of Rock in September of 2015. She was inspired to join the team because of her experience teaching vocals at Ballwin School of Rock. Molly strongly believes in the value that comes from working in a group. She says the most rewarding part of her job is seeing the development and growth of the kids during a show season. Molly loves having a job where she can be constantly surrounded by music, and work closely with the amazing musicians who make our mission of inspiring kids possible. She fronts a four-piece rock n' roll band under her name and has released five albums across two bands since 2012. Molly is excited to be in a thriving music community like St. Louis, and to watch so many awesome young musicians come up through School of Rock.

Joe Rogers Music Director

Joe Rogers is a young musician from Collinsville, IL who has played in several different St. Louis bands. Being a guitar player at first, he branched out to bass and drums pretty early on and now could be considered a jack of all trades. From prog rock to the blues, math rock to heavy metal, he truly loves a wide variety of genres. Being in a few different local bands has given him the opportunity to share the stage with some amazing bands, most notably Tiny Moving Parts, Earth and math rock gods The Bulletproof Tiger. He considers himself a songwriter above anything else. It's hands down his favorite part of playing music.

Michael Neu Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher

Michael was born in St. Louis and he began guitar study in 2008. Michael graduated from Mizzou with a BM in performance in 2016. After graduating, Michael moved back to St. Louis and he's been in local band Hazard to Ya Booty ever since. His musical specialties are jazz, hip hop, rock, blues, soul and a little country.

Phil Russo Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher

Phil has been with School of Rock since January of 2016. His passion for music and creating started in his youth as he grew up in a performing arts studio that his family owns. Phil received his Bachelor's in Music Performance and a minor in Music Composition from Lindenwood University in 2014. Since then, he has pursued music full-time. He band leads Mostly Jazz, a quintet that backs a tap dance ensemble. He also plays keys for The Highway Saints as well as solo jazz guitar for cabaret singer Amy Armstrong. Along with solo performances and singer/songwriter work, Phil arranges and band leads an acoustic trio, Hitchcock & The Hitmen. He was born into a family of dancers, musicians and performers. Playing and teaching music is Phil's passion. It brings him great joy to break down musical concepts to students of all ages and to increase the musicianship that we breed at School of Rock.

Jeff Nations Drum Teacher

Jeff Nations is a multi-instrumentalist/composer with over two decades worth of experience in the music industry as a drummer, guitarist, vocalist, bassist, keyboardist, songwriter and producer, not to mention many behind-the-scenes roles. He currently serves as drummer for the nationally touring, Billboard-charting indie alternative band Rookie of the Year, as well as a member of the STL cover bands Proud Larry and The Town Drunks. Jeff has also been a member of major acts including Shaman’s Harvest and Science Hill. He's had music featured on radio, TV, film, blogs, etc., has toured the U.S. coast to coast and has shared the stage with renowned acts including Ben Kenney (Incubus, The Roots), Chris Kilmore (Incubus), Chevelle, Twin Forks (Chris Carrabba of Dashboard Confessional), Bad Suns, Brett Scallions (Fuel), Josh Todd (Buckcherry), Forever The Sickest Kids and many others. Jeff holds a Bachelor's degree in Composition for film, television and video games from Berklee College of Music.

Cara Wegener Singing Teacher

Cara Wegener is a singer-songwriter based here in St. Louis. From the time she could walk, she has been singing and performing. Cara took voice lessons at age 10, and has performed in local theatre productions such as "A Christmas Carol," "Bye Bye Birdie" and "Annie." About seven years ago, she picked up guitar and started her own band, Cara Louise Band. Since, she has released two albums and she performs around the region at various venues. Cara is always eager to help young singers grow into their voice and find their stage confidence. She loves teaching because she gets to watch young talent develop firsthand.

Sya Collins Singing Teacher

Sya Collins is a St. Louis native, studying Vocal Performance at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. She has been singing and performing for as long as she can remember. Sya also loves playing piano and, most recently, guitar as well. She appreciates all types of music but especially has a passion for R&B, jazz and musical theater. Sya is well-versed in performing in a multitude of diverse genres and settings, including R&B bands, jazz combos, musicals and operas. Most weekends you can find her singing with Downtime Band. Sya is so excited to share her love of music with her students and help them to grow into more talented, confident, and inspired musicians.

James Wolfe Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher

James Wolfe performs live on keyboards, guitar and vocals with the national touring band Superjam. He is also former keyboardist of The Schwag. He began working full-time in live bands at age 15, playing in clubs in Minneapolis, MN. He attended North Texas State and St. Olaf College for Music. James started piano at age three, followed by guitar and saxophone. He specializes in progressive rock/jazz with a strong emphasis in ear training. His favorites include Frank Zappa, Yes, Genesis, King Crimson, Gentle Giant, Dream Theater, Marillion and Allan Holdsworth.

Garrett Lacy Drum Teacher

Garrett Lacy is an artist, musician and composer. He graduated Webster University in 2014 with a Bachelors of Arts in Music. He plays a number of different instruments and his primary instruments are percussion and piano. Garrett started teaching in 2017 in St. Louis and has taught a number of different classes from street drumming, African percussion, black history and private lessons. He has taught students of all ages. Garrett is an active person who enjoys a number of different hobbies from running, photography, reading and drawing.

Marnise Taggert Singing Teacher

Marnise Taggert is currently pursuing a Bachelors of Music Education from Missouri Baptist University. Her passion is educating young minds, driving her to house a safe place for her students to be creative and hone their individual musical talents. Apart from teaching vocal lessons, Marnise works with the North County Christian School’s Choir Program. She currently sings in the Chamber Singers and Chorale at Missouri Baptist, as well as sings in her church worship band. Though Marnise is a classically trained musician, her appreciation for different musical styles expands to different genres such as vocal jazz and R&B. She has sung with jazz ensembles and artist such as Fantasia. Marnise firmly believes in the philosophy of Orff Schulwerk: experiment, then intellectualize. Her goal is to give students the freedom to explore their musical gifts and to provide them with the tools necessary to understand the basics of music.

Simone Sparks Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Singing Teacher

Simone Sparks is an active musician, activist and artist residing in St. Louis. They started playing music in elementary school and have been almost exclusively self-taught since growing tired of hauling a cello 80% the size of their 10-year-old self to and from school every day. Simone was the Music Director at Saint Louis University's radio station KSLU, where they hosted "Are You Immensely Pleased," a radio segment focusing on eclectic genre exploration. Since graduating with departmental honors in Research Intensive English in 2017, Simone has immersed themselves in the rich DIY community that St. Louis offers, and currently plays with local acts Nibiru and motherbear. Simone's favorite part about teaching is helping students grow to the point where they find their own musical language.

Adnan Kahvedzic Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher

Originally from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Adnan has come a long way to pursue his passions in music. Since moving to St. Louis, he has studied Piano Performance, Music Theory and Music Education at the University of Missouri – St. Louis. He is well-versed in piano, guitar and bass, and performs various styles of music ranging from classical to rock. Adnan has performed in orchestra settings, jazz combos, and both in a band and as a soloist throughout the St. Louis area. He strives to help students express themselves through music and become better performers/musicians. He hopes to inspire confidence, resilience and love for the arts while maintaining a fun and educational environment.

Emilie Richard Singing Teacher

Emilie has been singing ever since she can remember. She was in her first musical at age seven and ever since then has not stopped loving music. Emilie is the front woman (vocalist) of Sweetie and the Toothaches and has been leading this 1940s-1960s jump blues band since 2015. She also spent her four years in college (2010-2014) in a leadership position for a junior high youth group and realized she loves working, teaching and interacting with kids and teens.

Emilie is from New Hampshire, but has stuck around St. Louis for the past five years because of her love for music and the opportunity that it presents here. Teaching is just another opportunity in her music career and she is SO excited to be a part of School of Rock. Her excitement, passion and gentle spirit are a great blend for teaching aspiring vocalists how to use their instrument and grow their love for music and singing.

Gregory Turner Guitar Teacher

Greg Turner first developed an interest in the guitar after watching “Back to the Future" as an impressionable youngster. This initial spark quickly grew into a lifelong passion. In 2007, Greg earned a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Washington University in St. Louis and, shortly after, he began teaching at music shops in the metropolitan area. Though based in St. Louis, Greg has performed throughout the globe. Greg's work as a professional musician has taken him from Turkey to Thailand (the long way) and included many stops in between. Greg's musical taste includes various styles, continents and centuries and is firmly rooted in the belief that no single genre has a monopoly on great melodies, lyrics, harmonies or rhythms. Greg continually discovers new subtleties and nuances about music through teaching. While explaining these details to students, he finds that the practice of translating musical ideas into words frequently illuminates concepts and techniques he hadn't fully considered. The process of discovery and the opportunity to share it with students
drive Greg's passion for music instruction. When he's not teaching, gigging or creating his own sounds, Greg
enjoys life with his wife, daughter and two cats at their home in St. Louis.

Chase Garrett Piano Teacher

Iowa City native Chase Garrett, voted 'Best Local Act' by "The Daily Iowan" in 2011, began playing piano professionally at age 17 and within a few years was performing at blues and boogie woogie festivals across the U.S. and Europe. Chase has been heavily influenced by artists such as Meade “Lux” Lewis, Otis Spann, Wynonie Harris and Louis Prima and as such his style has grown into an infectious blend of foot-stomping boogie woogie, super swinging jump blues and powerhouse piano blues. Chase has dedicated himself to the piano not only as a pianist, but also as an event organizer, instructor and technician. He has brought world class pianists to the Englert Theatre in Iowa City, IA for his annual Blues and Boogie Woogie Piano Stomp Festival for the past eight years and has taught master classes and piano performance workshops at colleges, blues weeks and swing camps across the U.S. Chase is also one of the founding members of St. Louis’ premiere jump blues band, Sweetie and The Toothaches, along with his wife Emilie Richard.

Chase knows music should be fun and loves teaching students how to use fundamental building blocks and different musical techniques to create awesome music and have an absolute blast, whether that be while performing solo or with a group.

Grace Cash Rock 101 Instructor, Rookies Instructor

Grace Cash is a Music (BA) student at Webster University and graduated Webster Groves High School as an honor student. Also, she once was a student at School of Rock. Now she's ready to help your kids have a great School of Rock experience like she did. She has been surrounded by music her whole life, having a father who is also a musician. Growing up as one of the oldest in her family, Grace has spent most of her work life as a babysitter for her little cousins. She started singing in a choir in third grade and has been a singer ever since. She loves teaching students who share her passion of singing and music in general. She enjoys spreading her love of all music and is excited to help the next generation of musicians become the amazing
performers they were born to be.

Kory Meyer Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher

Music has been the main focus of Kory Meyer's life ever since he started playing guitar when he was 12 years old. Kory has studied theory and musicianship at Jefferson College and Webster University. Kory started teaching guitar instruction in 2013 and has been teaching lessons in some way or another ever since. He started playing shows around Saint Louis around 2009 and has recently started performing in venues all over the country. After meeting and playing with so many great musicians from all over Missouri, Kory made an effort to expose these individuals and their work to his hometown by starting a festival that in just four years has grown from a small event at a local park to being funded and held bi-annually by the city of Festus on Main Street. Over his short career he has released two EPs and one album. He is excited to continue his teaching as a guitar and bass guitar teacher and learn from all of the great musicians at School of Rock Kirkwood in the city that encouraged him to pursue his love of music.

Marty Spikener Drum Teacher

Marty Spikener has been playing the blues for almost 40 years, and the St. Louis club scene is much richer with him perched behind his drum kit and growling out perfectly timed vocals. Marty is a vocalist, drummer and songwriter and even dabbles on keyboard. He has played all over St. Louis and beyond, and has recorded on several projects as well, including a project at Blue Lotus Studios. He is a drum teacher at School of Rock Kirkwood.

Alex Williamson Drum Teacher

Alex Williamson started playing drums about 13 years ago and took lessons for about five years during middle and high school. Alex played percussion in the Kirkwood school district, as well as played in the jazz band. He was also section leader of his drum line in high school. He is trained in jazz and marching, but has studied a plethora of other genres on his own. Alex also plays drums in local band Ground Control. Alex loves teaching and has been doing it for about two years now. Currently he is in school for Education at UMSL and is minoring in Music. He believes the greatest feeling in teaching is when you have a student who is struggling with homework or a part and then they finally master it. He is a drum teacher at School of Rock Kirkwood.

Amy Wells Assistant General Manager

Here at School of Rock Kirkwood Amy Wells is an instructor for our sweet Little Wing program, as well as our Assistant General Manager. With a degree in Recreation and emphasis in leadership, she has spent most of her professional career working with kids of all ages to help them to realize their potential in all kinds of formats. She believes music is a wonderful tool to explore all facets of life and a beautiful gift to give yourself and others.

While she has experience in the field of music and considers herself musical, she is not a musician. Her husband is a professional musician and they have worked together while owning a repair shop for electronic music equipment and operating a music conservatory together. Her three children also play music. Her eldest is a graduate of School of Rock Ballwin and is currently an instructor there.

She believes in School of Rock and the programming because they combine developing skills with developing character. Her experience informs her that performance-based education provides students the opportunity to grow exponentially.

Matthew Lesch Guitar Teacher

Matthew Lesch is a local musician who plays regularly in the blues scene in St. Louis. Matt is knowledgeable in many different genres of music ranging from jazz all the way to metal. He is currently attending Webster University and pursuing a Jazz Performance degree. He has played many national blues festivals and has played with some of the best in the genre, like Bobby Rush, Mud Morganfield and Kenny Neal to name a few. He loves to teach and pass on his knowledge to young, up-and-coming musicians. He is a guitar teacher at School of Rock Kirkwood.

Joseph Caratachea Guitar Teacher

Joseph Caratachea is a guitar teacher at School of Rock Kirkwood with a true love for creating and performing music with others. With over 20 years of experience playing and performing music, he has a wealth of knowledge to share with young musicians. As a martial artist Joe found a passion for teaching and working with kids when he began instructing youth classes in 2015. Joe comes from a family of musicians and found his passion for music at an early age. He began playing the viola in his school orchestra at nine years old and switched to the bass a few years later. He excelled quickly and decided to learn the guitar. He became obsessed and has been playing ever since. Joe has played guitar for Midwest Avengers since 2014 and has performed all over St. Louis. He continues to write and record music and work with musicians of all kinds. With his diverse musical background Joe specializes in mixing and fusing styles together and loves working with up-and-coming musicians.

Julio Prato Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher

Julio Prato is from Caracas, Venezuela. He came to St. Louis for college and got a degree in Music Performance from Lindenwood University with guitar as his main instrument. He has been loving music since he can remember. He is also a sound engineer, and has recorded a number of bands from St. Louis. In addition to playing guitar and singing for local punk band Kenshiros, he is the co-founder of Grownup Music (a local cassette label) and a producer of electronic music, and a DJ under the name nebulosa. Working at School of Rock Kirkwood for the past few years has been a wonderful opportunity for Julio, and he finds great joy in helping students develop their passion for music in his roles as a guitar teacher, bass guitar teacher and piano teacher. He loves his job and is happy to inspire a new generation of musicians.

Joe Meyer Drum Teacher

Joe Meyer was born and raised in St. Louis, MO. He graduated with a B.A. in Music from Webster University. Most recently, Joe spent 2016-2019 in Nashville touring with country singer Craig Campbell. While touring with Craig, Joe performed at the Grand Ole Opry on 14 different occasions, played "The Today Show" on NBC, and was part of Luke Bryan’s Huntin’, Fishin’ and Lovin’ Every Day Tour in 2017. Before heading to Nashville, Joe toured nationally and internationally with Nikki Hill, John Nemeth and Matt Hill and the Deep Fryed 2. In St. Louis, Joe cofounded and played in the band Superjam, along with Javier Mendoza, Erin Bode, The Tripdaddys, Shooting With Annie, Willie Akins, The Incurables and many others. Joe has also had an extensive recording career and worked with producers Toby Wright, Stephen Haigler and two-time Grammy winner Matthew Odmark, a member of Jars of Clay. Joe has played in 17 different counties, 49 of the 50 states and even a Minnesota Vikings half-time show. He is a drum teacher at School of Rock Kirkwood.

Maria Bottei Vocal Instructor

Maria Bottei is a vocal instructor and so excited to be teaching at School of Rock Kirkwood. She has been a musician most of her life, starting with the study of piano and voice, and going on to graduate with her Music degree from Saint Louis University. She has been teaching for many years, most recently as the music teacher at the Goddard School. She is also the lead vocalist in local Saint Louis rock band Churchfire. She loves teaching because she believes in the true power of music, both to connect people to each other and to learn things about oneself, both of which are her goals in teaching.

School of Rock is where music and learning come together

For over twenty years, our amazing instructors have transformed hundreds of thousands of students across the world into skilled musicians. Become a musician at School of Rock.


What a quality experience!

The opportunities these kids have to play with professional sound and lighting in amazing venues are something that countless times I've heard parents say they wish they had when they were teenagers!

They teach music and build confidence too.

No matter the age of the child, there is always a confident smile on both the child's and the teacher's face. To me, that shows that the teachers are promoting confidence and patience in their students.

What an inspiring staff.

My son is having a great time and loves all of the teachers he works with. I can't recommend enough! So grateful to have a team that has really given him a love for all types of music.

An incredible opportunity for kids!

The environment is amazing! It is welcoming for kids at all skill levels! Even as a beginner you're included in a small band where you get to perform!