Marty Morris Music Director
Marty Morris was born in central Illinois and raised in Atlanta, GA and Toledo, OH. His dad bought him a $25 pawnshop guitar at age six and only showed him how to play the song "La Bamba." Over the next several years, he taught himself to play multiple instruments, sing and write songs. His first public performance was a cover of Led Zeppelin’s "Moby Dick" at age 12 and by age 14 he was playing in an original band as a regular of the Toledo, OH music scene.
Studying Cinema and English literature in college, Marty briefly flirted with the idea of becoming a film director, but his love of music proved too strong. Moving to Detroit in 2001, he has worked continuously to evolve as a musician and entertainer. He has performed hundreds of concerts all over the world from the Fillmore in San Fran to Belgrade, Serbia – and he has supported such names as the Black Keys, Link Wray, The Kills, The Cramps, The Von Bondies, Mission of Burma, Radio Birdman and many more.
A member of critically acclaimed bands SSM (whom "The New York Times" called “the heretics of three-chord rock”) and the Cyril Lords, his experience in the music business is extensive. Marty's other passion is School of Rock. He was Music Director at two Detroit schools before making the big leap to opening the Frisco and Southlake locations, where he is now both GM and Music Director of Southlake/Keller SOR and an active guitar and bass teacher. He also leads a team as booking agent, tour manager, graphic designer and music director of the School of Rock Continental Summer Tour for our franchises.
Marty strongly believes in leading by example, and has forever changed the lives of countless students by showing them the joy and majesty of playing rock ‘n’ roll.
Tim Harman Drum Teacher
Tim Harman has been obsessed with every aspect of drums and percussion basically since he was born. Brought up in a musical family, he first latched onto the drums by observing the drum lines of the marching bands directed by his father. After receiving his first snare drum for Christmas at the age of eight, rhythm took over his life. He started gigging in Deep Ellum clubs at the age of 15 and embarked on his first tour the next year. In the 12 years since then, he has spent considerable time on the road with bands such as The Atom Age, PEARS, Informant, Detonate and Mose Giganticus among others. In between stints on the road, he has been teaching private lessons, working in and operating drum shops (he founded The Ghost Note in downtown Denton in 2012), building and repairing drums, and doing basically anything there is to do in the realm of percussion. He's been busy and never stops learning new ways to hit things with sticks.
Jade Owens Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher
Jade Owens fell in love with music at an early age just as many musicians do. Watching relatives play a myriad of instruments ranging from banjos and mandolins to piano and organs, the array of sounds coming from his grandfather's front porch captivated him. As time went on Jade found himself digging deeper into the world of music and sound. He picked up guitar and drums along the way. Cliff Campbell, former guitarist of Fair To Midland, gave him guitar lessons at the age of 17. Jade’s late teens and early 20s were spent in local bands with sounds ranging from noise art rock and punk rock, to soul, R&B and funk. Today, Jade plays guitar in the band Bad James. Their first release was recorded at Elmwood Studios, previous studio of St. Vincent and legendary producer John Congleton. Jade loves hats, DIY and every so often delving into the avant garde.
Beth Carter Piano Teacher, Singing Teacher
Beth was born in Springtown, Texas and was around music her whole life, growing up in a musical family. She always sung in church, choir and within her family. When she was eight she moved to Fort Worth and continued to sing in choirs and started to get into theatre. When she was 11 she started participating in musicals every summer. Then at age 14, she started attending School of Rock Fort Worth and making friends within the Fort Worth music scene. Throughout learning at School of Rock, she has picked up the piano, as well as ukulele, harmonica and bass guitar. In her last year as a student at School of Rock at age 18, she went on a summer tour and gained musical experience, as well as created everlasting bonds with the people she worked with. Currently she is studying music education at TCC and participates in their ensemble group. She still attends School of Rock as a part of the Fort Worth Adult Band, striving to broaden her horizons and become a better musician.
Sammi Bishop Drum Teacher
Sammi began her musical journey at the age of 15 by spending countless hours listening to her favorite bands, playing along to her favorite songs and learning from as many local professionals as possible. Sammi began cutting her teeth playing in local bars around Jacksonville, Florida at 17 years old and quickly became the go-to fill-in drummer around town and out of state. Soon, drumming became her full-time occupation. At age 22, she received a phone call from Austin, TX regarding a new opportunity to tour Europe with the movie soundtrack extraordinaire band Tito and Tarantula. Sammi entertained the masses with this amazing group in countless countries such as Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Poland, France, Italy and Russia. Sammi’s love of drumming already has and inevitably will continue to take her places far and wide. Currently, Sammi is a teacher at School of Rock in Dallas and Southlake, using her spark to lead young musicians to the big stage.
Melissa Birchett Singing Teacher
Born and raised in Dallas, Texas, Melissa began taking voice and piano lessons at the age of five. She grew up performing in musicals and plays across Texas until she ultimately decided to study classical music. Melissa moved to sunny Malibu, California at 18 years old and attended Pepperdine University, where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree with an emphasis in Vocal Performance in 2012. During her undergrad career, she lived in Germany and traveled across Europe, performing in various operas. Continuing her education, she moved to San Francisco and received a Master's degree in Opera Performance, studying under some of the most esteemed vocal and piano instructors. While living in San Francisco, Melissa sang with the Opera Director of the San Francisco Opera and performed numerous opera scenes throughout her two years. Melissa has become one of the top teachers in the school and loves being able to mold the musical minds of her students.
Bri Wischerman General Manager
Bri was born and raised in Southern California and developed a love for music early on. She started playing the violin in fourth grade and continued on with the flute, dabbled in the bass and drums in high school, and later moved on to the piano. She was also in show choir and various musical theater productions throughout middle and high school. Being from SoCal, she inevitably developed a love for ska-punk, classic rock and metal, with her favorite band being Guns n' Roses. Bri is now learning the bass guitar in the School of Rock Adult Program and is having a blast. A mother of two settled in North Richland Hills, she enjoys horror movies, concerts, eating out and going to Six Flags and spending time with her family. Bri couldn’t be more excited to be with School of Rock, and loves helping kids explore the arts and find themselves.
Zack Wiese Guitar Teacher
Born in Seattle, Washington, Zack's musical journey began early. Zack started at School of Rock in Frisco as a student when he was 13. After being there for four years he progressed into becoming a teacher here at School of Rock Southlake/Keller. He began as drum student, but also taught himself guitar, bass and piano, and has been known to sing every now and again. He's got a good ear for all genres of music, but says his favorites would be the classics, indie rock and garage rock. Zack currently plays drums in a band known as Post Palace, as well as plays everything in his solo project, Fluorescent Dreams.
James Malone Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher
Co-founder, singer, guitarist and lead songwriter for Arsis, James has been involved in the technical melodic death metal scene for more than a decade. A lifelong musician, James grew up in Virginia and began his musical education at the Berklee School of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. In 2000, he co-founded Arsis and the band has released five studio albums and three EPs. In addition to his work with Arsis, he composed "A Diamond for Disease" for the Ballet Deviare, a contemporary ballet company in New York City, which was performed off-Broadway in 2005 to a sold-out crowd. "A Diamond for Disease" featured a 13-minute title track that took four months to write and was hailed as “a multi-movement death metal masterwork” by "Decibel Magazine." Last year, James started a side project, Necromancing the Stone.
Ariel Ditta Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher, Vocal Instructor
Born and raised in Houston, Texas, Ariel Ditta first discovered her passion for music at the tender age of two when she threw a big fit in front of a music store because it was closed. She began taking piano lessons at four years old, voice lessons at seven, and eventually started teaching herself guitar and bass at 13 years old. Fresh out of high school, she moved to Denton to study voice performance at the University of North Texas, where she earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Jazz Studies in 2018. When she’s not busy instilling a life-long love of music in her students, she enjoys writing tunes, drawing mutant creatures that hopefully don’t exist, spending money she doesn’t have on effects pedals and making ambient, art grunge noises in her various projects around the DFW area. She is a guitar teacher, bass guitar teacher, piano teacher and vocal instructor at School of Rock Southlake/Keller.
Victoria Vinson Studio Coordinator
Victoria Vinson’s passion for music began at an early age when she began playing the viola in elementary school. This steered her to try out the guitar, bass and piano. Her love for music has directed her to pursue a career in Radio Broadcasting/Mass Communications. Victoria has worked for a majority of DFW’s most popular radio stations. She loves to help music connect a multitude of people together. Today she inspires to acknowledge the fundamentals of healing through music and art. She is the Studio Coordinator at School of Rock Southlake/Keller.
Loren Contino Little Wings Teacher, Rookies Teacher
Loren Contino has been performing around the DFW area since she was 12, and was a student at School of Rock Southlake/Keller for nearly four years. During her four years, she toured with students across the west coast and was even a contestant on "American Idol." Loren loves working with kids and now runs the Little Wing and Rookie programs within the school.
Jordan Proffer Drum Teacher
Born and raised in the DFW area, Jordan Proffer began his musical journey in sixth grade playing the guitar at his childhood church and percussion at his middle school. As he was introduced to jazz and his favorite band, Snarky Puppy, in high school, his love for the drums increased drastically. All throughout high school, Jordan was in the drum line and jazz band (excluding his first year), and participated in the All-State process, coming one away from both the All-State Concert Band (snare, marimba, timpani) and the All-State Jazz Band (drum set) his senior year. Although he only started playing the drum set his freshman year of high school, his passion and motivation led him to pursue a Jazz Studies degree at the acclaimed University of North Texas. Jordan is currently attending UNT, plays at various churches in the metroplex and plays various jazz/funk gigs in the DFW area. Although he is studying jazz, Jordan hasn’t lost love for his classic rock roots, and he aims to inspire kids to love music as much as he does. He is a drum teacher at School of Rock Southlake/Keller.
John McCoy Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher
John McCoy is from a small town in North Texas. His exposure to music started when his mother, a Beatles maniac and also a fan of 80s new wave and pop music, supported his learning of music in school. Growing up, his older brother, who had been a gigging bass player in DFW, exposed him to metal, punk, alternative rock and jazz fusion bands at an early age.
John was in the children's church choir all through grade school and also was in musical theater in high school. He always had an interest in musical instruments and finally got a guitar at 14. When John was in high school he learned that his longtime neighbor was a monster behind a drum kit and soon started his first band with him. He still plays in a band with him to this day. John took classical guitar instruction while in college, as well as private lessons from virtuoso guitarists of notable progressive rock and metal bands.
John is the lead guitarist and key songwriter for Surrounded By Monsters, a metal band based in Denton, TX. They have released one EP independently, and after signing a record deal with Nuclear Blast Records they released a full-length studio album called "Novella." They have toured all over the US and in parts of Canada.
After being with School of Rock Southlake/Keller, John has realized that he loves to teach guitar but also still enjoys learning it. He is a guitar teacher and bass guitar teacher.