Markham
School of Rock

Explore School of Rock

Markham

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School of Rock Markham
150 Bullock Drive
Markham, Ontario L3P1W2
(647) 218-7625

Location Specifics

Entrance on east side of the building, main floor, inside the red door between the swim school and Joyride.

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Hours
  • Monday: 3 PM - 9 PM
  • Tuesday: 3 PM - 9 PM
  • Wednesday: 3 PM - 9 PM
  • Thursday: 3 PM - 9 PM
  • Friday: 3 PM - 9 PM
  • Saturday: 10 AM - 3 PM
  • Sunday: 11 AM - 4 PM

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

Programs we offer

Rookies music program for children
Rookies
Ages 4-6

At School of Rock Markham, our music program for children with no previous musical experience (typically ages 4 to 6-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. School of Rock Markham's music program for young kids provides a fun introduction to music fundamentals that allows students in the GTA to explore guitar, bass guitar, drums, keyboard and vocals to provide a gateway to understanding music.

What To Expect
  • 1 WEEKLY GROUP LESSON
  • USE OF SIMPLIFIED ROCK INSTRUMENTS TO TEACH KIDS TO PLAY MUSIC

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 Markham, 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 7-12

Rock 101 is one of School of Rock Markham'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 Markham have a weekly private music lesson with an instructor who helps them learn the concepts and skills behind their performance songs.

What To Expect
  • 1 WEEKLY PRIVATE LESSON
  • 1 WEEKLY GROUP REHEARSAL

The Path to Take the Stage

Our music programs for kids in Markham are designed to get students on stage performing, with the goal of building strong musical proficiency. Younger students at School of Rock Markham 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 12-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
Performance
Ages 8-18

The Performance Program at School of Rock Markham 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 Markham Performance Program students take the stage and play at local Greater Toronto Area music venues in front of a live audience.

What To Expect
  • 1 WEEKLY PRIVATE LESSON
  • 1 WEEKLY GROUP REHEARSAL

The Path to Take the Stage

School of Rock Markham'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 Markham music venue.

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

School of Rock Markham'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 group rehearsal and one optional weekly private lesson. Every student at School of Rock Markham 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 the Toronto area. Our Adult Program gets students playing and learning through real performances of their favourite songs, and out on a live stage in various GTA music venues.

What To Expect
  • 1 Weekly Group Rehearsal
  • 1 Weekly Private Lesson (optional)

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 Markham 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 Markham. The Adult Program is for those who want to improve their musical proficiency or pick up their first instrument. The curriculum focuses on learning and applying music theories in a live performance setting. Advanced beginners, Intermediate and advanced students are placed in a band and assigned songs to grasp key music concepts. Then they take the stage to perform at a live show.

House Band program for gigging at local venues around town
House Band
Age 11-18

The School of Rock Markham 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 Markham's House Band. Once selected, House Band members become leaders in their School of Rock community and perform live shows at Greater Toronto Area rock venues throughout the year.

What To Expect
  • A GIGGING MUSICIAN'S EXPERIENCE
  • FREQUENT LIVE PERFORMANCES IN COMMUNITY

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 Markham and the rest of Ontario. 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
AllStars
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
  • A MULTI-CITY, COUNTRY-WIDE MUSIC TOUR EXPERIENCE
  • PERFORMING ON SOME OF THE BIGGEST AND MOST FAMOUS STAGES IN THE WORLD

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 Markham

Kid learns to play guitar at School of Rock
Guitar Lessons for All Skill Levels

Beginner Guitar Lessons for Kids

At School of Rock Markham, 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 Markham is an experienced musician, and they emphasize foundational music theory and technique when teaching guitar lessons to kids. Unlike other Markham 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 Markham'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 Markham, we teach beginner guitar lessons for adults in our Adult Program. This program gets students performing onstage at a local Markham 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 Markham 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 Markham 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 Markham 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 Markham we combine private drum lessons for beginners with weekly band rehearsals—it prepares students to perform live. With years of experience teaching drums in Markham, 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 Markham, 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 Markham. Unlike other Markham 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
  • RUDIMENTS
  • TIME SIGNATURES
  • TECHNIQUE
  • GROOVE

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 Markham, our drum lessons are customized for each student and his or her goals. Our Markham 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 Markham 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 Markham, 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 Markham 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
  • TECHNIQUE
  • HARMONY
  • POWER
  • READING

Intermediate to Advanced Singing Lessons

At School of Rock Markham, 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 Markham.

Kid learns to play bass at School of Rock
Bass Lessons for All Skill Levels

Beginner Bass Lessons for Kids

School of Rock Markham 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 Markham 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 Markham, 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
  • GROOVE
  • TECHNIQUE
  • THEORY
  • TONE

Intermediate to Advanced Bass Lessons

Our intermediate to advanced bass guitar lessons teach Markham 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 Markham, 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 Markham. 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 Markham, 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 Markham 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 Markham Adult Program puts beginner keyboard students in a band. Adult Program students in the Markham 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 Markham music venues, taking them out of the classroom and onto the stage.

Key Concepts
  • TECHNIQUE
  • TONE
  • THEORY
  • READING

Intermediate to Advanced Keyboard Lessons

At School of Rock Markham, 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 Markham, 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 Markham’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.

Co-Owner

Shelly Davine Owner

In 2013, Shelly opened the very first School of Rock in Canada with her late husband, Henry Teitelman. She has been involved in music for most of her life. For the past 20 years, Shelly has specialized in consulting and business services to all sectors of the entertainment industry, both in Canada and the U.S., but her main interest is and has always been music. Shelly is a people person and has owned and operated her own entertainment-related companies. In 1993, Shelly was nominated as a "Toronto Sun" 'Woman on the Move' and has been the recipient of multiple fundraising awards for her volunteer work with a number of national Canadian charity organizations. Shelly has been fortunate enough to have worked with many well-known artists in the music and film industries, including Alan Parsons, Martin Barre and Bob Ezrin, and still assists with the marketing and promotion of the multi-Juno Award-winning band Lighthouse. She is passionate about singing and playing percussion, bass guitar and keyboards. Shelly oversees all aspects of the day-to-day running of the School of Rock Markham.

Tommy Siatskas Co-Owner, General Manager

Tommy Siatskas is a drummer with over 20 years of playing experience. He has been working for School of Rock Markham since its grand opening in late March 2013. Tommy is also an Audio Production and Engineering graduate from MetalWorks Institute of Sound and Music Production. Tommy has been the drummer for a number of local Toronto bands. His bands have opened for Andrew W.K. at The Sound Academy in May of 2011 and played the Lemon Stage at Echo Beach for Toronto's Vans Warped Tour 2013. Tommy is currently drumming in Homicide Ventura, a four-piece local metal band.

Tommy is responsible for the school’s day-to-day operations, including staffing and coordinating the production of all of School of Rock Markham's season ending shows. To date he has worked on or overseen more than 60 shows. As co-director of the School of Rock Markham House Band, Tommy has been a part of every House Band tour to date.

Graham Unsted Co-Owner, Assistant General Manager

Graham started piano lessons at age six but at age 12 decided to concentrate on guitar instead. At age 16, he dedicated himself to practicing an hour a day and began to advance much quicker in his abilities. Around the same time, he began focusing on learning metal songs, whereas previously he had been devoted to playing the blues. This broke his habit of playing the same style continually and broadened his perspective of different genres. Around that time, he also started writing his own progressions and riffs and recorded them onto his computer.

As a shy and introverted teenager, Graham never imagined that he'd be performing in front of other people. He soon decided to conquer his stage fright so he could share the music he was making with other people. Graham attended the Toronto Film School and completed his certificate in Recording Arts Technology. After graduating, he formed his first band. He soon lost his stage fright and became hooked on performing. Graham not only plays all the instruments we teach at School of Rock but can also sing. Graham is very passionate about teaching at School of Rock and enjoys sharing his passion for music and performance with all his students. He is very grateful and fortunate for the opportunity to advance the abilities of young musicians in such an incredible environment and hopes to advance himself as a musician in the process.
Drum Instructor

Murad Gunduz Drum Instructor

Murad is a professional drummer from the GTA and alumnus of the prestigious music program at Humber College in Toronto. He has toured Canada, the United States and Europe with a variety of different bands performing clubs, theatres and casinos. Some notable acts Murad has toured with are The Chris Antonik Band, Wild T and the Spirit, three time Grammy winner Walter Ostanek and his band, and a variety of tribute bands covering music by Billy Joel, The Bee Gees, Elton John, Rod Stewart and The Beach Boys. His teaching style is fun and educational! In summary, Murad’s goal is to get his students' playing level, knowledge of music and confidence up so that they may seek opportunities to perform with other musicians such as in the School of Rock performance program where students learn to perform in bands together.

Dean Aivaliotis Piano Teacher

Dean has a Master’s Degree in Composition and is an active and sought after piano/keyboard player, songwriter and composer. Dean has had the pleasure of working with many talented musicians, adapting his skills to various genres ranging from pop to R&B, Motown, funk, hip-hop, house and rock music. Dean's notable performances include being the opening act for salsa sensation Oscar D'Leon alongside Christian Ty, performances at Roy Thomson Hall, Royal York Hotel and Beaches Jazz festival, and a variety of weddings and special events.

You can find Dean playing frequently around the GTA with Daniella Watters and other groups. Dean has composed the score for a number of short independent films. He is currently expanding his compositional portfolio, extending his work to film, television, video games and advertisements. Dean has been teaching at School of Rock Markham since a few months after it opened.

Roozbah Bahmani Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher

Roozbeh Bahmani has been musically involved and influenced since the age of seven, learning the keyboard and beginner piano to playing the violin throughout junior high school. At age 14, he was introduced to the electric guitar and never looked back. With just over 13 years of experience in playing various genres of music with several bands, from heavy metal to pop-rock, Roozbeh enjoys all forms of music.

A bandmate of Tommy Siatskas, our General Manager, Rooz also enjoys the technical and rhythmic writing that brings out the most fun and creativity in their band. One of his musical highlights was the incredible experience of having his band play at the July 2013 Warped Tour in Toronto. Rooz is ready to lead by example and to be an influence on all of the students who want to learn how to diversify their music style and learn the structure and great techniques needed to expand their musical horizons.

Raquel Rayner Piano Teacher, Singing Teacher

Raquel is a classically trained pianist and vocalist with a vast range of experience in everything from choral music to musical theatre to solo art. Her musical interests and performances have just as much scope in genre, from country Western to rock, pop, R&B, Motown, funk and everywhere in between. She has had the great fortune of working with incredible and renowned artists, composers and musicians through her endeavors.

Since starting singing before she could speak and taking piano lessons at the age of three, Raquel has never been able to turn down a stage (her favourite being the Toronto Centre for the Arts, where she has repeatedly performed as a soloist). She was an ensemble member and mass choir member with the Bach Children's Chorus and Bach Chamber Youth Choir. Raquel is currently exploring, testing and pushing her artistic and musical boundaries through pursuing her own music while studying Jazz at Humber College and is a firm believer that knowledge gained is only as useful as much as it is shared.

Kristian Kadirgamar Guitar Teacher

Kristian's musical tastes and influences range from classical to melodic death metal. He played the trumpet in concert and stage bands throughout elementary and high school. In 2007 he started guitar lessons and since then has performed with acts including Crimson Rice, Zzen and The Boredroom, where he played a variety of guitar, bass, drums and keys.

Kristian studied Media Production at Ryerson University, where he fell in love with music production, film making and game design. In his spare time, Kristian is also a martial artist, member of ACTRA and video game/film score composition enthusiast.

Jesse Byles Drum Teacher

Jesse developed an early interest in music by scouring through his parents' record collection. Initially inspired by bands like AC/DC, Led Zeppelin, ZZ Top, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Black Sabbath and Rush, he decided to start studying both drums and guitar. Jesse began playing in ensembles in grade eight when he joined the concert, jazz and rock bands offered at his elementary school. In high school he played in many different school ensembles, including concert, intermediate and symphonic band, as well as the string orchestra (playing violin) and their choir, The Mackenzie Singers. During the last two years of his high school career Jesse also began to form and play in rock bands in his local area.

After graduating from high school, Jesse enrolled in Humber College, where he graduated from not only their Theatre Production program but also their Jazz Performance program with Honours. During this time, Jesse began studying jazz percussion from instructors including John Adames, Steve Mancuso and Ben Ball.

Jesse is thrilled to be at School of Rock and pass on his knowledge to new musicians.

Lawrie Ingles Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher, Singing Teacher

Lawrie has been playing piano since he was about four years old and guitar since the age of 14. He plays keyboards, guitar and bass, and sings professionally in several bands. His main band is The Elton Rohn Band, one of the premier Elton John tributes in North America, playing festivals and theatres across Canada and the U.S. Lawrie has also played piano in Bruce Springsteen and Beatles tribute bands, as well as several Southern and classic rock bands, and recently began fronting a new duo called the Soul Maitre D’s, mostly playing original material. Songwriting is a passion, as is guitar and keyboard playing.

Mostly self-taught, Lawrie did take traditional piano lessons as a kid and played in many high school bands. He played with an international band of dentists before getting side-tracked in his university years. Lawrie looks forward to helping other musicians along their journey at School of Rock Markham.

Stephanie Jeffery Singing Teacher

Stephanie started her vocal studies at the age of eight. She received top place in various categories of the Kiwanis Music Festival and other vocal competitions within the greater Toronto area. Stephanie was a member and soloist with the Toronto Mendelssohn Youth Choir and Ontario Youth Choir for multiple seasons under the direction of Robert Cooper and Elmer Iseler. She performed throughout Canada and the United States as a member of Noye's Fludde (Canada’s contribution to the United Nations Treaty).

Stephanie attended Arts York in the voice program (now Arts Unionville) during high school. Performing in multiple stage shows, solo competitions and choirs has trained her to be a vocalist who enjoys teaching others with a passion for music and singing.

John Loree Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher, Singing Teacher

John began his musical journey with pop and classical music. He was taught how to sing at an early age by his classically trained mother, a former Elmer Iseler singer. After learning to play both the clarinet and trumpet in elementary school, he entered the high school band knowing he wanted to play a new instrument. He borrowed a friend’s guitar one day and quickly discovered that this was the instrument for him. He then quickly formed a high school punk band and began learning how to write songs and perform.

After graduating from Unionville High School’s Arts York Drama program, John threw himself into playing as a musician full-time and learned to play the drums, piano and bass. John worked as a production and live sound/lighting technician during this time, working for Pandor among others. While continuing to perform, John was accepted into, and graduated from, Seneca College’s IMP. This program gave him the skills he needed to record, mix and produce his own music. He continues to perform throughout the GTA and hosts open mics with his cover band, The Generations.

John brings his positivity and focus to each lesson, with the goal of bringing out the best in every student by making learning fun and focused. He is very excited to share his love for music with a new generation, drawing on his past experiences to help students hone stage presence, technical proficiency on their instrument, and, most of all, the confidence of a rockstar.

Michelle Ding Piano Teacher

Michelle has had a love for music ever since she was a baby. From what her mother recalls, she would sing lovely songs for her every morning even before she learned how to talk. Continuing her love of music, six-year-old Michelle begged her older cousin to teach her the simple things that she had learned. At eight years old, Michelle started taking official piano lessons from The Royal Conservatory of Music (RCM). After completing grade nine piano with RCM, Michelle took a break from lessons and now enjoys practicing on her own and playing the piano for fun.

Michelle came to know about School of Rock when she decided to start taking guitar lessons to further her knowledge with different instruments. She is continuing her guitar lessons while studying Early Childhood Education at Seneca College. Michelle strongly believes in play-based learning where children learn and have fun at the same time. Her personal philosophy is to encourage children and to observe children’s interests and plan interesting activities to further their developmental knowledge.

Tad Upshaw Guitar Teacher

Tad Upshaw is primarily a metal/rock guitarist, although he has musical influences and interests from a very wide variety of genres. Tad began playing guitar at the age of 12 when he was assigned the instrument at school. He quickly fell in love with the guitar and began taking lessons. Throughout high school, Tad played in a number of small bands and began playing the double bass in the school band. Tad is a graduate of the Music Industry Arts and Performance program at Centennial College, where he focused on the business side of the music industry. During this time, he also performed as the guitarist for a hard rock band called Apothecary and an acoustic act called Duality. Tad is currently working as a guitarist in a project called The Weatherman. He is a guitar teacher at School of Rock Markham.

Candace Sintnicolaas Vocal Instructor

Candace Sintnicolaas first joined School of Rock Markham as a co-op student through high school. Shortly after that she became an instructor for our Little Wing and Rookies programs, as well as a private vocal coach. During her time here, Candace was also a student in our Performance program, as well as a lead vocalist in the School of Rock Markham House Band for four years, where she performed in shows across the GTA and in three tours in the US. One of Candace’s favorite memories was the week the House Band performed at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Punta Cana.

Candace auditioned and was chosen as a vocalist for the School of Rock AllStars, a group made up of the top 1% of all School of Rock locations in the world. Candace had to chance to play at venues such as World Cafe Live, The Wonder Bar and Lollapalooza. After five years with School of Rock Markham, Candace decided to further her education by attending Fanshawe College in London, Ontario, where she studied recording and mixing for live music, as well as different styles of stage etiquette, theory, writing and a history of the music she loves. Candace still missed performing, so she transferred over to Centennial College for their Music Industry Arts and Performance program, where she plans to remain until graduation. She is a vocal instructor at School of Rock Markham.

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.

Reviews

We Love School of Rock!

It engages my child in music in ways that he wouldn't have otherwise known.

It built Confidence in My Child!

I love the progression and the confidence this builds in my child. It's a great atmosphere for learning and amazing instructors.

I'd give it an 11!

My 13-year-old says School of Rock feels like a family. I have never felt so welcomed by an organization in my life. It's so supportive and fun. We started with two kids in lessons and now the whole family is involved.

What a cool studio set up!

Great instructors, a cool studio set up and performance programs allow students to learn how to play with others!

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