Inspired by rock bands like Cheap Trick, KISS, and Queen, Michael started playing guitar at age 12. As a teenager, Michael discovered classical music and started studying classical piano. Initially drawn to classical- and romantic-era composers like Beethoven and Chopin, his interest soon broadened to Liszt and Ravel, and then to 20th-century masters like Bartók, Prokofiev, and Shostakovich. “I also started getting into jazz in my late teens,” explains Michael. “Miles Davis is one of my heroes, for sure.”

Michael completed his Bachelor of Music in Jazz Guitar from Roosevelt University in Chicago in 1994. During college, he continued his study of classical piano, and started to perform in various rock bands in the Chicago area.

As an adult, Michael has taught, performed, and recorded music extensively in both Chicago and Los Angeles.

Michael’s teaching style is rooted in a firm grasp of music fundamentals, while catering to the unique needs of each student. “My goal with teaching is always to provide all of the tools and resources necessary to fulfill the creative and artistic vision of each student. Furthermore, if we focus on a sound process of making and practicing music, our creative goals and aspirations typically happen automatically.”

First piece of music that had a profound effect on me: “Superstition” by Stevie Wonder.

Music teacher who inspired me the most: My piano teacher, Joseph Cisar.

How I am making the world a better place: Compassion, kindness, mindfulness, and service to others.

Favorite quote about music: “Do not fear mistakes. There are none.” – Miles Davis