Cindy Goldberg Studio Coordinator, Little Wing and Rookies Instructor
Cindy is not only our Studio Coordinator, she is our Little Wings and Rookies music instructor.
Cindy is a long-time musician; her first instruments were the piano, followed by the clarinet and saxophone. She has played with several jazz bands and concert bands, including Swing Shift, The Byward Winds and the Halifax Concert band.
Several years ago, Cindy fell in love with drumming. She studied with many local and renowned drummers, including Roy Nichol (April Wine), Mike "Machine" Mallais, and Jason Gianni. Last year, she ventured to New York City for several weeks to study at the Drummer's Collective; that was a dream come true! In 2019, Cindy was also busy producing and directing a feature documentary about female drummers called "Beat Keepers: Women with Rhythm."
Cindy is also a singer/songwriter and her previous band, Restless Soul, produced and performed several original songs. More recently, Cindy co-founded a new band "Retroz" - hopefully we'll hear more from them in the near future!
On an even brighter note, Cindy recently married American drummer and percussionist Rafael de los Reyes.
Troy Huizinga Guitar Teacher, Drum Teacher, Singing Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher
Troy Huizinga is an accomplished multi-instrumental performer, recording artist, and songwriter who has been captivating audiences since an early age. His excellence on guitar, bass, drums, keyboards, and vocals has been featured in numerous recording and touring acts throughout Canada, the USA, and Australia.
Some career highlights include founding Autumns Cannon with fellow School of Rock instructor Shaun Francisco in 2009, and indie rock group High Waters in 2011. Troy’s compositional talents led to significant radio airplay nationwide. He has performed on stage with Susan Aglukark, the NAC Orchestra, Tom Wilson, Royal Wood, and Peter Katz. He has opened for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Ashley MacIsaac, and more.
Troy is currently touring and recording with award-winning, indigenous folk-rock group Twin Flames. In addition he is recording new material for his solo project HENK, writing music with Hearts&Mines, and occasionally performing with local groups Bytown Lights and Satellite Birdhouse.
Called to positively influence and inspire the community, Troy is proud to offer his wealth of experience and passion for music to his students through the School of Rock.
Chris Buttera Drum Teacher
Chris Buttera has been playing drums since 10 years old. He started playing in bands and recording when he was a teenager. Bands like Boston, Rush, Thin Lizzy and Metallica influenced him at a young age and he began learning a large catalogue of classic rock and metal tunes.
He is mostly self-taught but he has taken professional lessons from Ottawa's own Jeff Asselin. He learned about technique, sight reading and advanced rudiments. Chris has been a consistent player in Ottawa’s music scene for over 10 years. He has played live in, and recorded albums with, Descendant, Vyc Vypyr, Ginger Fox Band and King Swan. With King Swan, the singles "Generation Zero" (from the self-titled debut EP), "Kaleidoscopic Eyes" and "Wicked Witch" (from the "Rituals of Fire" EP) appeared on various "Don Cherry's Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Hockey" DVDs. Recently, Chris has been playing around Ontario with The Steph Larochelle band and Danny Sylvester.
Scott Norris Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher
Coming from a house filled with rock music from the day he was born, Scott was influenced to pick up the guitar at age 10 and instantly fell in love with every aspect of the instrument. Learning various techniques at this early age under his dad's direction, Scott began to understand his passion for guitar as well as music in general. Playing his first real gig at an open mic night at Barrymore's at the early age of 13, Scott instantly knew the stage was where he belonged. He then began taking lessons at various facilities in the Ottawa/Orleans area and studied under a handful of different instructors all the while taking in all of their various influences and developing those methods into a style that worked for him. Shortly after beginning lessons Scott's musical interests turned towards the heavier side of the genre when he heard Pantera. From there he began to fall in love with the heaviest music he could find. Scott then began to focus on teaching himself and started to look into creating music on top of just learning what his favourite bands were playing. Scott was in and out of various local metal Ottawa bands from ages 16-18 and began learning about the music industry as a whole as well as spending lots of time performing on various local stages. From there, Scott began focused all his time and energy into his new project: Of Reverie, a post-hardcore/metalcore outfit from Ottawa. The band has worked with producers such as Adam Newcomb (Newcomb Studios) and Doug Meadows (Allspark Studios), as well as toured with acts such as Sirens Sailors, Chasing Safety and Horizons. Scott's time with Of Reverie has taught him many things about his own playing and the music industry, and given him a brief glimpse into what life on the road is like. Of Reverie disbanded in 2016 after releasing two albums and reformed as local metalcore outfit: Horcrux. Scott has been the primary songwriter and a founding member of Horcrux from 2016-present. The band has been featured on many different online platforms including Rocksound and Alternative Press. Horcrux is also sponsored by Legator Guitars. Albums "The Dark Mark" and "Heretic" can be found on all major streaming platforms.
Ryan Whealey Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher
As a kid Ryan always loved listening to music. He picked up his first guitar at the age of 12 and quickly developed a passion for it, deciding then that music would be his career. At the age of 14 he was asked to join his first band and soon after he was playing shows all around Ottawa. After high school Ryan took Algonquin College's Music Industry Arts program where he learn all about how to produce and record bands. This gave him the skills needed to record Ginger Fox Band's two latest releases. Ryan has been a music teacher for over four years, teaching kids and adults of all ages guitar, bass and drums. He also works as a live sound engineer all around Ottawa. He has played gigs across Ontario in multiple bands, including The Ginger Fox Band and M'alice and Monsters, a tribute to Alice Cooper.
Galen Cussion Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher
Originally hailing from Innisfil, Ontario, Galen began his music journey after discovering The Beatles in his youth. At 12 he was given his first bass guitar and took to it with great enthusiasm, forming a band with friends shortly after. Upon exposure to Queen a few years later, he taught himself the piano, alongside guitar and vocals. Eventually this led Galen to studying music at Carleton University, taking lessons from Steve Boudreau and graduating with a BMus, majoring in jazz piano. With a very eclectic range of influences, Galen is well-versed in classic rock, prog rock, alternative, jazz, classic metal, musical theatre and electronic music. His list of musical heroes includes The Beatles, Queen, Rush, The Killers, Yes, Pink Floyd, Genesis, Kraftwerk, The Who, Muse, Franz Ferdinand, The Rolling Stones, The Sheepdogs, The Beach Boys and too many others to list here.
No stranger to the stage, he competed in several battle of the bands in high school, as well as in a tribute act at the Orillia Beatles Celebration four consecutive years. Since moving to Ottawa in 2013, Galen has been a regular in theatre pit bands, and has twice been musical director for productions of rock musicals "Heathers: the Musical" and "The Rocky Horror Show." He currently performs with both Blind Aura and The Tackies, the latter of which have toured across Eastern Canada, performed at 2017's edition of Ottawa Bluesfest, won the "Ottawa Life Magazine" Cover Me contest and worked with artists such as The Lazys, Modern Space, LIGHTS, Alvvays and Jim Bryson.
Matt Spafford Guitar and Bass Guitar Teacher
After being told that taking guitar lessons meant starting acoustically, Matt began learning bass guitar at the ripe age of 7 years old. By the age of 11, he was participating in all manner of performance programs, private lessons and personal learning. Thus began Matt's passion of playing solo and blending genres in various bands. Upon starting high school, he began playing shows around the city in his pop-punk band Spirit of Commission. By the time he was 18, Matt had toured all across Ontario and Quebec, as well as over 15 American states with his band Castlefield. He has also worked as a touring bassist with a number of American bands. In addition to his experience as a musician, Matt has also worked as a concert promoter and booking agent, organizing concerts all over Canada and the United States.
Matt now spends his time playing with Ontario pop-rock group Certainty, as well as writing and recording music as a solo musician. He is also a full-time student at Carleton University, pursuing a Bachelor's Degree in Communications and Media Studies.
Alex Pharoah Guitar Teacher
Born and raised in Guelph, Ontario, Alex began his musical career at the age of 12. He was gifted an electric guitar for his birthday and it was love at first sight. He got his start playing at church in the band on Sunday mornings which evolved to performing at various church events around the Guelph/Kitchener/Waterloo area. Alex moved to Ottawa in 2014 to attend Algonquin College's "Music Industry Arts" program where he graduated in 2016. Quickly after moving Alex got involved as the lead guitarist for the band "Hearts In Stereo". Over the next year they played shows all over Ottawa and even as far as North Bay. A year later they unfortunately broke up as multiple members moved away. While in school, Alex met and became friends with Tori Dawson (who now goes by the stage name "Vi"). Alex has become her guitarist, performing live together and on her album "Blackwater". They eventually played at Ottawa's Bluesfest in 2019, opening for a band named "The Backstreet Boys". In 2015, Alex and a couple of his musician friends got hired to be the band in CBC Radio One's "Christmas Human Jukebox". They practiced for months beforehand learning every christmas song they could. Listeners would call in to the show with a special story and a song that reminded them of christmas. Then the band had to play whatever song they requested. Since January 2020, Alex has been a music director at a church here in Ottawa.
Robin Kenny Keyboard Teacher, Singing Teacher
Robin Kenny is an Ottawa born singer-songwriter/keyboardist with a growing commitment for writing music and being involved in her local music scene. She has studied under various vocal coaches including Ottawa's Juno Award winning jazz talent, Kellylee Evans. She is currently in her last year of Carleton's BMUS performance program studying jazz vocals where she is thankful to have built connections with many talented musicians both on and off campus. In previous projects she has played at RBC Bluesfest, the Navan Fair, as well as winning the 2017 City of Ottawa Battle of the Bands with her former alt-rock group, O Neptune. Performing at various rock venues across the city has helped her develop her sound and ability to engage with an audience as well as continue her love of performing.
Rafael de los Reyes Drum Teacher
Rafael de los Reyes was born and raised in New York City. He hails from a very musical family. He is the son of Cuban bandleader Emilio Reyes and Puerto Rican vocalist Irma Rodriguez.
He is cousin to the legendary drummer and percussionist Walfredo de los Reyes Sr. (Fajardo, Cachao, Wayne Newton), and Walfredo Reyes Jr. (Santana, Steve Winwood, Chicago), and Daniel de los Reyes (Earth Wind and Fire, Jennifer Lopez, Zak Brown Band).
His early musical experiences occurred while he was featured as a percussionist in his father’s band playing gigs around the N.Y. metropolitan area and recording with local groups. By the time he reached his adolescence, he had acquired the knowledge of a professional. When Rafael turned 14, he began studying formally with William Kessler, before moving to the Drummer’s Collective. He furthered his studies with Henry Alder (and later with Sam Ulano), and played many of New York City's major clubs and off-Broadway shows.
Throughout the years, Rafael has performed with numerous artists, including Bo Diddley, The Shirelles, The Drifters, The Platters, The Marvelettes, The Tokens, Mary Wells, Ben Vereen, Ben E. King, Joey Dee & the Starlighters, The Shangri-Las, Celia Crúz, La Lupe, Orlando Contreras, Vicentico Valdés, Lou Pérez, and Chico Alvarez. His talents have also been exhibited on television performances (including the 1999 Grammy Awards show with Ricky Martin, “One Life to Live”).
SEAN DUHAIME Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher
Sean Duhaime is a guitarist, bassist, composer, and music teacher. He has been performing as a bandleader, collaborator, and sideman with numerous bands and musicians for over 10 years. He has performed at the RBC Ottawa Blues Festival, the TD Ottawa Jazz Festival, the National Arts Centre, the Infinity Convention Centre, the CTV television network, Ottawa City Hall, and many other venues in Ottawa, Gatineau, Wakefield, Montreal, and Toronto. Sean has been performing and recording with locally and internationally known artists such as Maurice Moore, Blakdenim, Kimberly Sunstrum and Ferline Regis. Sean's main genre is Jazz & Fusion, but he is open minded and has played different genres especially R&B, Funk, Rock, Blues, Reggae, Kompa, Zouk, Gospel, Folk and Country. Allan Holdsworth, John Coltrane, King Crimson and Deep Purple inspired Sean to be a musician.
On October 2nd, 2016, Sean released an EP entitled ‘Finally!’ at the Black Sheep Inn in Wakefield, Quebec. ‘Finally’ has four original tracks including ’Bert’, ‘Tomo’, ‘Unblue’ and ‘Kenshiro’. On March 21st, 2020, Sean released his latest EP entitled “Opportunity” on the website "Bandcamp" which also has four original tracks, including a single released in 2019, ‘I Can’t Dance’. Sean teaches guitar, bass and ukulele. He also teaches music theory which includes reading, intervals, inversions, transposition, improvisation, harmony, rhythm, composition & arrangement, scales & modes and ear training.