An active educator, Greg maintains a studio of private trumpet and piano students at Music and Arts in Ellicott City and Laurel. Working with students of all ages, backgrounds, and levels, Greg approaches teaching with encouragement, insight, and patience.
In the realm of piano, Greg meets each student where they are and works to help them achieve their musical goals. Beginning and intermediate students use any combination of method books by Faber, Bastien, and Alfred, while more advanced students also incorporate the Thompson course for piano. Students are also always encouraged to bring in any music that strikes their interest as well – there are countless wonderful things to choose from. Over the years, Greg’s students have worked on music from Hollywood (Harry Potter, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings), Broadway (Hamilton, Phantom of the Opera, The Lion King), popular music (Taylor Swift, The Beatles, Bruno Mars, Billie Eilish, Queen, Alicia Keys, John Legend), and many others.
Students also come to Greg to study the great American art form of jazz. Standards are explored as found in the Real Book, Volumes One and Two, utilizing a variety of approaches involving the development of aural acuity, the knowledge of scale-chord relationships, and how to merge everything to create a cohesive, authentic, and ever-evolving whole.
As a trumpet teacher, Greg also meets each student where they are in their journey and strives to help them grow and improve. Fundamentals such as efficient embouchure formation, breath control, and articulation are discussed as a foundation on which a student can firmly stand. Participation in school music programs is highly encouraged, as trumpet playing is largely almost always part of a collective effort. Though nothing is set in stone, beginning method books such as Accent on Achievement and Standard of Excellence are frequently used, before the early intermediate student is often introduced to the Getchell series. Soon thereafter, the stalwarts of trumpet method and technique books can be incorporated: Arban’s Complete Conservatory Method for the Trumpet, Clarke’s Technical Studies for the Cornet, and Schlossberg’s Daily Drills and Technical Studies for Trumpet. These books, and many others like them, serve as a launching pad to help the student prepare repertoire found in their school programs as well as solo repertoire that strikes their interest.
There are many paths to the top of the mountain, the saying goes, and nobody has ever reached the summit. The joy is found in the journey and successfully overcoming challenges along the way. Music is a vehicle that ultimately allows people to develop a deeper understanding of themselves and the world around them, and the cultivation of that understanding pays enormous dividends, both musical and otherwise, throughout life. In short, a worthwhile endeavor.