19321 36th Ave W #44, Lynnwood WA, 98036
Instruments:Composition, Ear Training, Horn, Piano, Theory

Styles:Classical, Other
Levels:Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
Experience:3 years
Rate:$30 / hr

Personal Statement

I teach horn (French Horn), piano, music theory and music composition/songwriting. As a composer, I write for a wide variety of ensembles and instruments, most notably the horn and horn choir, trumpet, brass choir, symphony orchestra, chamber orchestra, piano, woodwind quintet, and choral works. Most of my compositions are tonal and expressive in nature, with particular emphasis on late romantic classical aesthetics and dramatic music for film and other media. I am fond of using rich triadic harmonies along with frequent use of chromaticism in my music.
As a hornist, I have performed with the Yakima, Mid-Columbia and Wenatchee Symphonies, along with many other groups in Central and Western Washington. As a pianist, I am particularly fond of the late romantic and impressionist works for the piano, as well as works for piano in other genres, notably film, musicals, new age, soft rock, and easy listening music. I also use the piano fairly regularly when composing.

My Teaching Philosophy

Every student is unique, with their own personality, challenges, abilities, desires and goals, musical tastes and practice habits. I adjust my teaching style frequently to fit the needs and desires of every student, and am absolutely committed to each student’s success. If there is anything that I can say that applies to the way I teach all of my students, it is that I go the extra mile for them, often writing original music for them which is geared to their tastes and abilities, as well as always keeping a healthy, positive teaching atmosphere. On that note, I strive to be kindly, patient and considerate in my teaching style, as well as outside of teaching.
There are many attributes that I look for in potential students, but the single most important quality I look for is the passion they have for music. It is that passion that will move them forward, to improve and to grow as a musician and a person. I am ready and eager to share everything that I have learned about music, and the more that a student is willing to learn, the more that I can teach that student.

Rates And Availability

I teach at Kennelly Keys in Lynnwood, in Room 7 on Mondays from 3-8 P.M., as well as Pointe of Grace Trinity Lutheran Church in Mukilteo on Wednesday from 10-12 noon and Thursday from 10-3 P.M. I also am willing to travel to students’ homes to teach, even well outside of the North King/South Snohomish County areas. I charge $20.00 for a half hour lesson, and $30.00 for an hour lesson.

Education / Training

My Teaching Background

I have been teaching horn, piano, theory and composition privately for over 3 years, during which time I have coached horn players in local public schools in the Lynnwood, WA area. I hold a BA in Music from Central Washington University and am currently in the Pacific Northwest Film Scoring Program. I am also a certified music instructor with TakeLessons, and have been teaching with them for over a year.

My Horn instructors include Jeffrey Snedeker at CWU, Larry Lowe and Kathy Colton at Brigham Young University, Kathy Farner, Elizabeth Ward, and Jaqueline Shannon. Composition instructors include Tim Huling and Hummie Mann at the Pacific Northwest Film Scoring Program, Greg Youtz at Pacific Lutheran University, David Sargent at BYU, and Mark Polishook and Eric Flesher at CWU. Piano instructors include Tim Brewster, Carolyn Poland, April Hochstrasser, and Judy Sullivan.

Benjamin Gessel