Gold Coast Arts Center Welcomes New Faculty

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Beginning this January, 2016 the Gold Coast Arts Center, a non-for-profit visual arts center open year-round to promote and support the arts through education, exhibition, performance and outreach will welcome aboard an extraordinarily talented group of international musicians to help instruct in various areas of concentration from saxophone to clarinet, piano, violin, voice, and MORE! With So much to offer through classes for various ages and skill sets, you'll definitely want to see for yourself at 113 Middle Neck Road, Great Neck, NY 11021 or visit!

Gold Coast's School For the Arts is especially unique in their dedication to providing quality musical instruction through their diverse multi-talented staff of instructors who are highly trained and educated. With the addition of four new international faculty members who have studied everything from classical to jazz, toured with symphonies, and won awards for their contribution to music and education, they will also bring additional classes to the Arts Center's repertoire including a Group Advanced Piano Class and Teen/Adult Jazz Workshop!

Jan Kus (Saxophone, clarinet and piano instructor), is both an educator and performer. He worked as head of the Education department at the Slovenian-based institute BOBEN IN LAJNA from 2011-2012. He's been teaching privately-beginner, intermediate, and advanced for many years. Classical music and jazz are his forte, and his students achieve great results on NYSSMA and ABRSM tests. Jan is a trained saxophone and clarinet player, but also teaches ensemble classes, beginner piano, music theory, and rhythm classes. Jan says "As an active, international working musician with a strong passion for music on one hand, and a two-time main organizer of an international summer camp of music on the other hand, I believe I possess the necessary qualities to help the students find their own paths, and reach the maximum of their musical and creative potential."

Hsinwei Chiang (violin instructor) is a Taiwanese violinist, composer, and educator in both jazz and classical genres. She has studied classical violin since she was child, and has toured with symphony orchestras in Malaysia, Italy, California, Hong Kong and Berlin since she was ten years old. After graduating from Taipei University of Art (BA), she discovered her interest in improvisation and collaborated with different artists (jazz, world music, dance, theatre, fine art) in major venues in Taiwan. As an experienced music educator, she has been teaching violin beginning in the Taipei for a decade, as well as general in public school in Taoyuan. She received a Master's degree from the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College in New York.

Ms. Chiang will be offering a NEW GROUP VIOLIN CLASS which introduces basic violin and music training through games, movements, and stories. "Students will enjoy the simple pleasure of playing music "says Hsinwei. She believes strongly that playing violin opens a new world of sensory perception through world by touch, hearing, and sight. Meet the Violin is a class for ages six and up.

Tuomo Uusitalo (advanced piano instructor) is an Award-winning jazz pianist, educator, composer and arranger. Born in Tampere, Finland, Tuomo Uusitalo started to play piano at the age of 6. As a teenager he played different types of music from classical to pop/rock, and soon became fascinated by Jazz. While studying music in Graz, Austria (University of Music and Performing Arts), Tuomo already had the chance to work and perform with many jazz legends including Bob Brookmeyer, Billy Hart, Curtis Fuller, Jimmy Cobb and Jim Rotondi.

In 2012, Tuomo moved to New York City, where he has quickly become one of the prominent pianists on the jazz scene. During his time in NYC he has worked with several legendary jazz musicians and bands including The One And Only Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, Rich Perry, Joe Farnsworth, Curtis Lundy, Tyler Mitchell, David Schnitter, Jeff Hirschfield, Johnny O'Neal and Greg Bandy. Of his teaching experience, he says "I enjoy nurturing and sharing my experience with students through private and group lessons."

A NEW GROUP ADVANCED PIANO CLASS will be taught by Tuomo Uusitalo. Piano, harmony and rhythm lessons designed for advanced students while introducing different styles of music, from classical to pop & jazz, will be taught. Students will work on deeper understanding of harmony, rhythm and improvisation. Skills that will be developed include ear training, collective improvisation, building repertoire and learning the "language" of specific styles of music.

MAYA NOVA is a trained voice instructor, and also teaches guitar and piano. She is a soulful jazz vocalist with 20 years of performing experience and 10 years of teaching experience in over 3 continents: Europe, Asia and America. She received a Bachelor's Degree from the Pop and Jazz Department of the National Music Academy, Sofia, Bulgaria and a Master's Degree from The Jazz Vocal Performance Program at Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College (2014). From 2008 until 2012, Nova was an adjunct main study voice lecturer at Contemporary Music Performance Department of LaSalle College of the Arts, Singapore and also taught voice lessons at United World College, German International School, and Saint Joseph Institution International in Singapore. For more information, visit

Join her for a NEW and exciting Teen/Adult Jazz workshop for ages 14+!

This is a unique opportunity to learn from a professional jazz performer, Maya Nova. The syllabus includes :Learning Jazz Standards Song form and choosing the right key, Knowing how to listen to the jazz greats and finding different versions of a tune, learning The Blues, rhythm exercises and MAKING LYRICS SWING.


ROBERT HOFFMANN has developed his vocal and teaching ability through a variety of life experiences and is a graduate of Hunter College with a Master's in Music Education. He achieved a 3-night record-breaking draw to New York's China Club at the peak of its popularity, and his CD Believe was produced by Grammy award winner Richard Oliver. He has earned the respect of top studio musicians such as Richie Canata and Peter Yaro, and is a vocal instructor, teaching confidence from proper breathing and vocal exercises.

Robert will be teaching PAINLESS PIANO, a very successful program which he developed, for students as young as 4. Voice Movement and Percussion, another class developed by Hoffman stimulates children as young as 4. For the more experienced student looking for a challenge Robert teaches the Gold Coast a Choral Ensemble "Vocal Expressions".

TINA LAMA is a string, voice and piano instructor based in New York. For the past 20 years, she has regularly performed with jazz, bluegrass, rock and orchestral groups throughout North America. Receiving her Masters in Jazz Performance from Queens College in 2014, Tina has had the honor to perform alongside Tony Bennett, Danilo Perez and Jimmy Heath, as well as Emmy- and Independent Music Award-nominated bluegrass and hip hop groups.

Tina will be teaching a versatile introduction to rhythm and instruments for ages six and older. Students will learn the basics of rhythm, percussion, guitar and piano.

GLENN MANION has been playing the guitar since 1969. In 1983, he and his musical partner and wife, Suzanne Smithline, formed "Squeaky Clean", which specializes in presenting classic rock and roll in schools, theaters, and the like. The group made regular appearances on Nickelodeon's "Eureka's Castle" for several years. As a songwriter, he has received awards from ASCAP and the SKC/ New York Music Awards, BA New York University. He is also a blogger for the Huffington Post.

LESLEY STOLLER, a NYS Licensed Music Teacher with an MA in Psychology. He has been teaching Music for the NYC Department of Education at Queens Children's Psychiatric Center for nineteen years. Mr. Stoller is a permanent Member of the BMI Lehman Engel Advanced Musical Theater Workshop where he developed his new Musical, The Talking Cure. He is an ongoing contributor to The Night Kitchen Radio Theater, and recently conducted his original score for their production of The Emperor's New Clothes at The Kennedy Center's Family Theater. Mr. Stoller is excited to be part of the GCAC staff.

SHARON BERNSTEIN is a cellist who has played at leading festivals including the the NYSSA School of Orchestral Studies at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, the Aspen Music Festival and the Boston University Tanglewood Institute. She has performed with several orchestras including the Boston Civic Symphony, the Greenwich Village Orchestra, the New Amsterdam Symphony Orchestra, and the North Shore Opera Company. She is currently a member of the South Shore Symphony and the Nassau Pops Symphony Orchestra where she performs regularly.

With this addition of such a talented group of international faculty this January 2016 at the Gold Coast Arts Center, you won't want to miss your chance to sign yourself up or give the gift of music to a loved one for one-on-one, semi-private, or full class instruction at 113 Middle Neck Road, Great Neck, NY 11021!

For More Information On All of the Gold Coast Arts Center's Music Staff, VISIT:

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