Joseph Alcocer

Joseph Alcocer is a violinist and string teacher and current graduate student in Music Education at Eastern Michigan University. He holds a B.A. in violin performance from Huston-Tillotson University. Alcocer is a fervent advocate of public school music education, he taught privately for seven years in Central Texas and taught orchestra in the Austin-area public schools most recently at Manor High School and Manor New Tech High School where he provided a high level of teaching to an underprivileged student base. At EMU Joseph holds a graduate assistantship in Instrumental Music. In addition, Joseph is String Instrument Specialist with the brand-new orchestra program at Brighton Area Schools (Go Bulldogs!). He maintains a thriving private violin and viola studio and is in demand as a violinist, he performs regularly with Michigan Philharmonic, Dearborn Symphony, and Adrian Symphony and is an active freelancer throughout southeast Michigan. Joseph has registered teacher training in the Suzuki Method, his teachers include Melissa Kraut, David Strom, Laurie Scott, and Mark Mutter.


Emily Bargen

Emily grew up in a musical family and has been playing the piano since she was 6 years old. She was taught by her mother and is so blessed by that experience. Emily competed in multiple music festivals during her junior and high school years. Through her high school and college years, she accompanied the school choirs. Emily received a bachelors degree at Great Lakes Christian College with a minor in music/piano performance. She also has had many years of experience playing keyboard and piano in worship team settings. Emily has taught piano since 2004 and has a passion for using her talents to help and teach others.


Sarah Cartier

Sarah has been dancing since she was 5 years old! One recreational dance class many years ago turned into a lifelong journey through dance, and Sarah has been dancing for 16 years and counting. The only thing Sarah loves more than dancing herself, is teaching dance to kids of all ages and sharing the joy that dance can bring! Sarah currently teaches for four dance programs, one being School for the Arts. She loves many styles of dance, including ballet, tap, hip-hop, pointe, contemporary, and lyrical. Sarah is also a certified Rhythm Works Integrative Dance instructor.

Piano, SFTA Director

Stacy Christensen

Born and raised in Concord, New Hampshire, Stacy Christensen began playing piano at age 6. She has a passion for sharing the gift of music with others, and started instructing students in piano at age 16. Also a teacher by education, Stacy holds both a B.S. in Math Education and a Masters of Education. She has taught Montessori elementary and high school, working alongside many different ages to help students grow and gain confidence in their skills. Stacy loves working one on one with students, and skillfully combines her educational background with her excitement for and knowledge of piano here at School for the Arts.


Ryan Concienne

Ryan has been playing guitar since the age of 12. His formal music education has included private lessons with a few very talented instructors; and earning a certificate from Berklee College of Music. His most notable musical endeavors have been with the pop-punk band, A Hero Falls, recording multiple albums and playing a multitude of shows including local festivals, radio performances, and a Midwest tour. Also, while getting his master’s from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business, he played lead guitar in the school’s modern rock band, Risky Business. Ryan is currently involved in several other musical projects. Some of the best things in my life have come through music, and he hopes to share that legacy with the students at SFTA!


Jessica Culver

Jessica fell in love with singing early in life. In high school, she sang in choir and was involved in several musicals. Jessica received her Bachelor of Vocal Performance at Grace Bible College where she sang nearly all the time, including a yearly dinner theatre and as the lead in the opera “Amahl and the Night Visitors”. She’s been active in her local worship teams and choirs by singing and even directing; she has also sung in a number of weddings. Her passion for kids and education is evident in her three kids, two of whom she home-schooled for 3 years and the third who can sing the ABC’s even though he’s too young to know the letters yet! She is looking forward to sharing her love of music with students and helping them develop their talents. 


Austin Dubois

Austin is currently a junior at the University of Michigan studying voice. Growing up he was heavily involved in community and school theatre performing in everything from The Wizard of Oz and West Side Story to Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. In high school, he was a part of the top choral and acapella groups and arranged multiple pieces for both. He has worked with the senior musical theater group “Beyond Belief”, based in Novi, as a musical director multiple times over the last couple years. In 2018, he began playing as a dueling pianist where he continues to sharpen his skills in performing every week.


Gail Green

My name is Gail Green and have lived in Brighton for 5 years.  I have 30 years of teaching experience as a K-12 music teacher and private flute teacher throughout Michigan.   I graduated from Central Michigan University with a Bachelor degree in K-12 instrumental and vocal music education, flute major. Currently, I am the Director of the Michigan Flute Orchestra that consists of Piccolo, C Flutes, Alto Flutes, Bass Flutes and Contrabass Flute.  We perform all over the Greater Detroit area which includes the DIA and the Detroit Public Library. I have performed with the Ypsilanti Symphony Orchestra, International Symphony Orchestra (Port Huron, MI and Sarnia, Canada) Saginaw Symphony, Midland Symphony, Port Huron and St. Clair pit orchestras, West Michigan Flute Choir (WMFA) and Delta Flute Choir, Blue Water Woodwind Quintet,  Blue Water Occasions, Blue Water Trio, Iridescent Flutes and currently performing with the Motor City Flutes and Trio Dolce.  In addition to directing and performing I also adjudicate MSBOA Solo & Ensemble Festivals at the District and State Levels. Being the President of the Southeast Michigan Flute Association (SEMFA) has been a lot of fun. We plan annual festivals, recitals, and workshops for the flute community. I enjoy photography, sports, travel, and all styles of world music.


Hannah Haynes

Hannah has been studying piano and music since she was four years old. She competed in many competitions throughout high school. In 2017, she graduated from West Coast Baptist College with a bachelors degree in sacred music with an emphasis in music education. She is passionate about teaching music to children and loves finding creative ways to teach new concepts to her students. She currently plays piano with her church’s worship team every weekend. She has been teaching piano for 8 years now.


Kimberly Holback

I first learned to paint with my mother and grandmother as a small child.   Like most artists, I have loved to create as long as I can remember.   My artistic interests were encouraged by my family and teachers along the way. I really discovered my talent and love for painting when I was in high school. I went on to study Art and Psychology eventually exploring the field as a professional artist.  I began my art career creating murals, portraits, and various projects. About ten years ago I began teaching art out of my home studio and in the community. I have been honored to have my work hang in the Studio West Gallery in Brighton, the Howell Opera House, and Kaleidoscope, also published and shown with the Connected Art Book project featured at ArtPrize in Grand Rapids, as well as many other shows and art events over the years. I am passionate about art education for children, and I really love each of the young artists that I get the privilege of working with.  When I’m teaching, my goal is to inspire the students to see the world as an artist sees and to experience the joy of creating and personal expression in a fun and positive environment.  In class, we try to focus on the process, not the product, but we celebrate the end result when it’s finished as well.


Paul Lundin

Paul is currently living in SE Michigan where he is a freelance violinist. He has performed locally with Ann Arbor, Flint, Midland, Saginaw, Oakland, and Rochester Symphonies. He studied at the University of Iowa where he earned Bachelor and Masters Degrees in Violin Performance. Most recently while living in Wisconsin, he performed with the Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra, Waukesha, and Green Bay Symphonies and held the post of Concertmaster for the Racine Symphony from May of 2000 until 2008.  In addition to performing, he was a sabbatical replacement at the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point (2001) and was adjunct instructor at Concordia University in Mequon, Wisconsin for 8 years. Formerly, he was a fulltime member of the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra from 1992-1999, was on the faculty of Northwestern State University and Centenary College and concertmaster of the Longview (Texas) Symphony. He received critical acclaim as soloist in Longview playing Erich Korngold’s “Concerto for Violin and Orchestra” in 1998.


Austin Netherton

I’m Austin Netherton and I have been teaching acoustic, classical, and electric guitar for 10 years. I studied classical guitar at Concordia University where I majored in Music and minored in Contemporary Christain Music. I’m currently in the Masters of Music Composition program at Michigan State University. My favorite part about teaching guitar is building meaningful relationships with my students and helping them achieve their goals. Depending on what my students want to focus on, lessons will often incorporate: playing their favorite songs, music theory, reading, songwriting, improvisation, and creative expression. By setting clear goals, actively encouraging, and focusing on what’s important musically to my students, we are able to have fun and see the most improvement.



Marianne Potter

Marianne started playing the piano at the age of five and studied piano at Rochester College while pursuing her Elementary Teaching degree. She took classes at Schoolcraft College through their Piano Teacher’s Program, when she first began teaching piano. Marianne finds joy in seeing young children master a new skill and develop their musical abilities. She believes piano not only enriches lives, but also is a great teacher of discipline and contributes to higher success in other academic areas as well.


Beth Pressley

Beth has been involved in music all her life. She took piano lessons for 13 years, played the violin in orchestra for 7 years, and joined an A Cappella group while in college at U of M. She currently plays keys with the worship team on weekends at the 2|42 Brighton campus.


Steven Prevett

Steven Prevett is an active composer/songwriter, performer and instructor from Flint, Michigan. He graduated from Central Michigan University with a Bachelor of Music with a focus in composition and classical guitar. As a multi-instrumentalist, he has developed a unique style of playing, ranging anywhere from classical to broadway to popular music. His most recent successes includes the original musical about dogs, “3 Pekes in a Pod,” co-written by Quincy Dobbs. Other works include the original score for Central Michigan University’s production of William Shakespeare’s “Pericles”, music scores for various short films, & original music for live comedy sketch acts in Chicago. His current performance acts are the classical guitar &accordion duo “Everything but the Polka”, the classical guitar group “The Phly Boys” and the husband & wife comedy-duo “Melon 2 Melon”. As an instructor, Steven has had the pleasure working with many wonderful students of all ages. With over five years of teaching, he has had the opportunity to watch students grow and reach their goals as growing musicians. Steven strongly believes in the importance of music education, that music should be explored and shared with everyone.


Anastasia Ries

Hello, my name is Anastasia and I was born with music intertwined within my soul. From the age of 6, I have been playing the piano. It is without a doubt my favorite musical instrument. I immigrated from Russia in 2013, formerly known as the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. I obtained my Bachelor of Russian Classical Piano and a Master’s Degree in music and Choir Direction, from the State University of Culture while in the USSR. I have been teaching piano for over 20 years in both Russia, and the United States. I have taught students of all ages ranging from ages 5 to 50 years old. I absolutely love to teach piano and to assist my students in developing their musical talents. I also teach my students the discipline of becoming a pianist and performing to the best of their ability. At the same time I hope to create in my student’s a passion for the piano and develop a lifelong desire to continue improving their skills as a pianist.


Annaliese Schindel

My name is Annaliese Schindel and I’m a piano teacher at School for the Arts. Growing up I played a number of instruments but piano was always my favorite. During high school I started to take it more seriously and began to study under a private instructor. I was also able to teach a couple of young girls from my church around that time. After I graduated I continued to teach and have been growing my studio ever since. Teaching piano is a passion of mine and it is my desire to instill a love of music as well as give a solid musical foundation to each child I teach.


Larisa Soboleva

Born in Chisinau, Moldova, Larisa Soboleva began her piano studies at the age of five. In 2003, she was accepted into the National Academy of Music, Theatre and Fine Arts in Chisinau. In 2008, Ms. Soboleva received a full scholarship from Rowan University to study with  Professor Veda Zuponcic.  She was awarded a full scholarship to the University of Miami in 2012, where she completed her doctorate studies.

During her years of study, Larisa has won prizes in National and International Competitions in Moldova, Ukraine, Romania and the US. She has performed with the National Orchestra of Teleradio Moldova and the orchestra of Rowan University. Ms. Soboleva is the holder of two Masters Degrees in Piano Performance, from the Academy of Music, Theatre and Fine Arts and Rowan University, where she graduated with the Jacob Steinway Award, given to the most outstanding pianists graduating. She successfully combines performance activities with piano teaching and looks forward to working with you at SFTA!


Timothy Stockdale

A native of North Canton, OH, Tim initially studied at Zampino’s Drum Shop. While there, he explored rudiments, jazz, rock, funk, fusion, Latin, and Afro-Cuban rhythms, and earned many outstanding ratings in solo and ensemble competition. Over the years, he has played with numerous jazz and worship bands, and he currently drums with the 2|42 band. Tim’s teaching style involves demonstration, discussion, and playing together with the student. He uses books as a reference to communicate established ideas and concepts as a foundation for creativity while holding musicality at the center of rhythmic artistic expression.