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Our Experienced Music Instructors

School of Rock has experienced music instructors

Our Experienced Music Instructors

School of Rock Pasadena’s music teachers are experienced musicians devoted to helping students attain musical proficiency. From singing to drums to guitar, our Pasadena music instructors inspire and teach students to perform live.

Kapali Long Guitar Teacher, Singing Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, piano Teacher

Born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, Kapali Long has been performing music all his life since he was the age of three learning piano, then ukulele. His main instruments would be his voice and guitar, but he plays close to 20 instruments with guitar being his primary instrument. He can play guitar and piano, studied voice classically, ukulele, mandolin, harmonica, bass, percussion and banjo. Music is in his blood being from Hawaii and a native Hawaiian. Long has played and writes all genres from rock to reggae, metal to folk, and country to urban.

Pierre Karlsson Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher

Before before moving to Los Angeles to study music at the world renowned Musicians Institute (GIT), Pierre performed and recorded with various rock bands from his homeland, Sweden. Since graduating, Pierre Karlsson has established himself as a sought after guitarist, composer/arranger and music collaborator whose stylistic flexibility and enthusiasm speaks for itself.

He has been teaching at School of Rock since 2007, sharing his passion and love of music by teaching guitar and bass and directing seasonal shows. Pierre is a multi-faceted musician with credits like the film "Night School" (starring Kevin Hart and Tiffany Haddish) and "Green Eggs and Ham" (Warner Bros), as well as many commercial and indie projects. He has recorded with artists ranging from Benny Mardones (Into the Night) to Dona Oxford and producer/engineer Rob Brill (Paul McCartney) and Billy Sullivan (Trekkies). His playing has been featured on television broadcasts around the world including recent credits "Sing Like a Star," "Daily Blast," "Evidence of Innocence" and "Xploration Awesome Planet."

Ross Chait Drum Teacher

Ross Chait is a drummer, singer, songwriter and composer born and raised in Los Angeles. Growing up playing in bands and writing songs from the age of eight, he went on to study music and english at Oberlin College in Ohio. Since moving back to Los Angeles in 2013, he has been pursuing a career as a professional musician by writing film scores, doing studio and touring work as a drummer, writing songs for his own band Total Heat, working in music administration and distribution, and also teaching lessons. Over the past four years Ross has toured extensively as a drummer in the US, Canada, South America, Europe and Asia. Ross currently plays drums with the indie rock group Girlpool and is an administrative assistant at The John and Alice Coltrane Foundation. Most importantly, he continues to pursue his lifelong dream of touring the world and spreading love and knowledge of music.

Emily Toorean Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher

Emily's inspiration to begin in music all started when she was young and first listened to some Led Zeppelin CDs of her dad's, a drummer who set the example of being a musician and inspired her to be dedicated to the art of music. Emily just recently graduated from high school and has completed several courses in Music Theory from the Berklee School of Music. She has had several years of formal training in guitar as well as more than a decade of performance experience. She thoroughly enjoys teaching others and seeing them grow and improve. In her spare time she enjoys reading, laughing, hiking and most of all attending concerts. She has performed at venues in Los Angeles and Louisiana including The Voodoo Room at The House of Blues and The Whisky-a-Go-Go. Although she is heading for college this fall, she plans to always be strongly involved in music no matter what.

Christopher Eklund Guitar Teacher

Chris Eklund is a Swedish guitar player and composer who is currently living in Los Angeles. Chris came to Los Angeles to study music at Musicians Institute, where he was accepted with several scholarships. Chris graduated from Musicians Institute with honors in 2016 and received the ’Outstanding Player’ Award. Since graduating, Chris has been performing with various artists and he has also been touring around the U.S.

Chris is the former lead guitar player of the band Sifting. Sifting is an alternative metal band based in L.A. that is currently touring across the U.S. and also playing at venues around Los Angeles such as The Viper Room and Whiskey A-Go-Go. Sifting recorded their latest album with producer Ryan Williams, famous for working with Pearl Jam, Stone Temple Pilots and others. Sifting released an EP in fall 2015 which was produced by Steve Evetts, famous for working with Symphony X.

Hassan Dahik Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Singing Teacher

Hassan Dahik is an Ecuadorian singer/songwriter and bass player influenced by a variety of world styles. He created HGroove, a high energy band that mixes rock, funk, hip-hop, pop and Latin to create an eclectic and unique sound. His aggressive but melodic style, paired with his energy onstage, make him a unique performer. For three years he studied music at UDLA (Universidad de las Americas), majoring in Bass Performance. Recently he graduated at LACM (Los Angeles College of Music) and continues to create, perform and record his original music.

Nick Sitton Singing Teacher, Piano Teacher

Nick Sitton is a Los Angeles-based multi-instrumentalist singer/songwriter. He was trained in classical and pop piano starting at the age of 10 and went on to get an Associates Degree in Operatic Singing. Nick's main instruments are voice, piano and guitar, but he can also play drums, ukulele and bass.

Nick has been building a catalogue of original music under the moniker Boy Bloom, of which he composes, arranges, records and produces all work himself. He also composes scores for films as well as plays in various projects locally.

Nick has been teaching kids and adults music since 2015 and continues to pursue music in all aspects because of his want to spread and engage with its transformative, empowering and healing nature.

Drew Steen Drums Teacher

Drew started playing the drums at the age of 12 and knew from that age that he wanted to play drums professionally. In 2005, at the age of 19, Drew moved to Los Angeles from his home in Nebraska with a dream and a goal to play drums at a high level and with high level artists. In 2008 Drew started playing for Demi Lovato and toured with her for three years. Also in that time he toured and played with such artists as David Archuleta, Kris Allen, Victoria Justice and Reel Big Fish, and played drums on the Grammy-nominated album "Repentance" by the reggae legend Lee Scratch Perry.

In 2012 Drew started playing with violin star Lindsey Stirling and continues to play with her today. He has also played on several television shows including "Jimmy Kimmel Live," "Good Morning America," "The Today Show," "The Kids Inaugural Ball" (playing for Michelle Obama and her children), "Dancing With the Stars," "Ellen," "The Meredith Viera Show" and "Live with Kelly and Ryan." He also had a recurring role as the drummer for Demi Lovato and Adam Lambert on "Glee" in season eight.

In his downtime off the road he loves teaching and keeping his own chops up by playing with as many artists as possible. Drew has played many legendary venues around the world including Madison Square Garden (three times), The Greek Theater in Los Angeles, Wembley Arena in London, The Zenith in Paris, Red Rocks and many soccer stadiums in South America. Drew has toured the world many times and has garnered a lot of experience in different playing environments and cultures.

Clint Dodson Drums Teacher

Clint Dodson is a drummer, percussionist, composer and educator at School of Rock Pasadena. He has studied and performed with various artists, including Vinny Golia, Tony Malaby, Steve Lehman, Randy Gloss, Vicki Ray, Stephen Horenstein and John Hébert. Clint has studied drum set with Dana Hall and Joe LaBarbera. He is also a devoted student of Hindustani music, studying tabla with Subrata Bhattacharya and Swapan Chaudhuri. Clint’s work aims to find the midpoints between disparate musical approaches, from avant-garde jazz to experimental electronic music and punk to contemporary classical. It’s an approach that encourages musical fluency beyond genre boundaries in order to hear and improvise more freely.

This openness to a wide range of styles also informs Clint’s educational approach. He has taught various foci of drumset playing, as well as classical and rudimental percussion, to a wide range of students. He has also been active as a teacher of composition and improvisation to a wide range of instrumentalists.

Ryan Schiff District Manager

Born and raised in Long Island, NY, Ryan began playing guitar at age 13 after seeing the movie "La Bamba" about rock legend Ritchie Valens. He studied with Grammy-nominated guitarist Steve Briody for several years before starting his own projects and soon became an instructor himself. While still in New York, his band Code Anchor independently released several EPs and one full-length album, "Rosada," while touring extensively nationwide from 2005-2009. A co-writer in the band, Ryan also played lead and rhythm guitar while singing lead and backup vocals. Memorable stages include the Vans Warped Tour at Nassau Coliseum and headlining bills at some of New York City's greatest venues like CBGB's and The Knitting Factory. It was during this time that Ryan began teaching at School of Rock in NY. Hungry to pursue new musical ventures, Ryan departed from Code Anchor and moved to Los Angeles in 2009. Since then, he's been busy writing, producing and performing with his newest project, Lou Pine. As a Sony/ATV artist, Lou Pine’s music has been featured on television shows like “Chicago Fire,” “Gordon Ramsay’s The F Word” and “Food Paradise." Ryan enjoys playing every genre, including jazz, funk, country and folk, but credits the blues and rock n' roll as his main influences. He is the district manager at School of Rock Pasadena.

Tevis Sauer-Karlsson General Manager

Tevis Sauer-Karlsson was raised in Dallas, Texas and loved all things music from the beginning. She cried in tune as a baby, began playing piano at the age of three and took lessons by four. She then began learning guitar at 13 and started classical voice studies in high school. After graduation Tevis made her way out to Los Angeles to attend the Musicians Institute vocal program, where she received multiple awards. She has since played in numerous bands both as a singer and bassist. She has written and recorded her original music all while teaching piano/keys, bass and singing lessons around the city. She found School of Rock in 2006 and joined the team as a vocal instructor and soon after began running summer camps and show directing. Witnessing what School of Rock programs offer students led Tevis to become further involved in the operations side of running the school and led her to eventually becoming the General Manager of School of Rock Pasadena and School of Rock Burbank. Tevis believes kids are better humans for having been in School of Rock programs and will put every effort in, along with her dynamic team, to make sure as many people have the opportunity to benefit from it as possible.

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