Teacher Profiles

Call Stage 1 Music at 805.522.2166 to sign up for lessons with any of these talented instructors.

Jon Bellis

Guitar, Bass and Piano
Jon is a staple in the Simi musical community. With over 40 years of playing and 10 years of teaching guitar and bass, Jon brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to his craft. He got his start with legendary Hawaiian artist Don Ho, and has done extensive session work for producer/arranger Don Costa on projects ranging from TV commercials to hit singles. A student of the Dick Grove School, Jon specializes in Rock, Blues, R&B and Country. His easygoing style helps students learn in a comfortable environment, while his flexibility allows them to develop musically by playing the songs they love.
Schedule: Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday

Chrys Berri, piano, saxophone, trumpet, clarinet, flute and French Horn

Chrys Berri

Piano, Saxophone, Trumpet, Clarinet, Flute and French Horn
Chrys has been a musician since childhood and currently works with several local bands and worship teams. He has been teaching music for more than 30 years, including 10 years running Berri’s Music in Simi Valley. He specializes in group piano classes for children as well as advanced keyboard, woodwinds and recording studio techniques. Receiving his education at Cal State Northridge, he is well versed in classical as well as popular performance, composition and theory. His fun and professional style of teaching helps students feel at ease as they progress toward their musical goals.
Schedule: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday & Saturday

Ken Cox

Drums
Ken is a perennial student favorite, having taught drums in Simi Valley for 30 years. Ken studied with renowned drummer Ed Shaughnessy of the Tonight Show. He also published the instructional book ‘Advanced Stick Aerobics’, which was featured in Modern Drummer and is used by classic drum professor, Ed Soph. Ken has a long list of students who have gone on to professional music careers, and teaches varying styles from double bass, rock and country to jazz and funk. Generations of students love Ken for his sense of humor and love of music that comes through in his supportive teaching style.
Schedule: Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday & Saturday

Ric-Fierabracci

Ric Fierabracci (Visiting Faculty)

Fretted and Fretless Electric Bass
Ric Fierabracci is a graduate of the University of Miami’s prestigious Studio Music And Jazz Program and has performed and recorded for artists like Billy Cobham, Chick Corea, Dave Weckl, Steve Smith, Vinnie Colaiuta, Mitchel Forman, Police Guitarist: Andy Summers (with Sting as a special guest), Planet X, Frank Gambale, Eddie Jobson’s UK, to Pop artists: Sir Tom Jones, Stevie Wonder, Jennifer Paige, Bill Evans Soulgrass and many others. Ric is also a three time Grammy nominee, including the debut CD from Ric’s band, “Hemispheres” which was nominated in the 51st Grammy as “Best Contemporary Jazz Album” and has also been nominated twice for “Best Instrumental Jazz Solo.” He has performed professionally all over the world for over 30 years from Albert Hall and Madison Square Garden to the Taj Mahal. Bass lessons concentrate on technique, reading, improvisation and all aspects of becoming a professional musician.
If you’re interested in studying with Ric, please email him directly.
Schedule: Contact teacher for openings

Lydia Li, piano teacher

Lydia Li

Piano
Lydia has been playing piano for 20 years. She received her Bachelor’s degree from Shanghai Normal University majoring in Music Education. She studied piano as her main instrument under concert pianist, Steinway Artist Yi Wu, for three years. She is currently earning her Master’s degree in Piano Performance under Steinway Artist Dr. Dmitry Rachmanov at California State University, Northridge. During her performance career, she has successfully given solo recitals and concerts in China and the US. Lydia has taught students of all ages, using various teaching methods. She constantly strives to cultivate her students’ appreciation for music by developing good habits and providing a positive musical environment for them. Students also gain awareness of the concept, history, and theory of music. Her goal is to help all students learn and discover music, and maintain a love and appreciation of music for a lifetime.
Schedule: Tuesday

Alejandra Moreno

Alejandra Moreno González

Violin and Viola
Alejandra is a classically trained violinist who has been playing the violin for over 20 years. She graduated from the Institute of Fine Arts of Mexico with a degree in Performance in Violin and is currently a Master’s Degree in Performance student at the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia. She has played as a violinist in the Orquesta Sinfónica de la Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León (Mexico) and the Sydney Youth Orchestra (Australia), among other orchestras. Alejandra was the winner of the Soloist Competition of the Superior School of Music and Dance of Monterrey in 2016. Her favorite performance setting is chamber music and orchestra. She is a Suzuki certified teacher and enjoys teaching students of all ages.
See Alejandra perform at www.vimeo.com/alejandramoreno.
Schedule: Monday & Tuesday

Emma-Michaelsen

Emma Michaelsen

Vocals
Emma combined her classical training with an interest in metal, performing with cover bands in her native Sweden as well as touring northern Europe and Russia. After relocating to Los Angeles, she graduated from Musicians Institute where she became a frequent guest teacher for the extreme vocals class, teaching students how to execute aggressive vocal tones without damaging their voices. Her personal performance credits include Billy Shehan, Ron Thai and Ray Luzier. She specializes in teaching placement and breathing techniques that apply to any style of singing. She helps students learn their favorite styles and find their very own expressive vocal power.
Schedule: Thursday

Nara Petrosyan, piano teacher

Nara Petrosyan

Piano
Nara is a classically trained pianist who graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s Degree in Piano Performance at California State University, Northridge, under the tutelage of Dmitry Rachmanov, and is currently completing her Master’s Degree in Piano Performance. She has performed in numerous recitals both as a solo and chamber musician in the US, Armenia, and Germany. She has participated in  masterclasses with numerous piano masters, such as James Giles, Andrew Von  Oeyen, John Perry, and Jay Hershberger, and has performed in a chamber music masterclass with the internationally renowned Szymanowski Quartet.  She also worked as a musical theater pianist, and in 2016, was a musical director for the CSUN Musical Theater Guild. Nara strives to teach her students all the skills and concepts necessary for them to become well-rounded musicians and independent learners, help them to achieve their highest music potential, and develop a lifelong love of music.
Schedule: Thursday

Kevin Pugh, Bass Teacher

Kevin Pugh

Bass
Kevin is a Simi Valley native who has played extensively throughout the area since high school. In 2012 he decided to further his musical education by attending the Los Angeles College of Music in Pasadena, California. For two years he studied all aspects of bass playing, gaining a knowledge of all styles of music as well as music theory. Kevin regularly directs the music ministries at Simi Covenant Church in Simi Valley and Freedom Church in Thousand Oaks. He keeps busy recording and playing live for various bands and artists which has earned him a feature in Music Connection Magazine and a nomination at the 2014 SDMAs alongside Switchfoot and Jason Mraz. Kevin has a true passion for music and is excited to share it with his students.
Schedule: Tuesday & Thursday

Jenna Ryin, Vocal Teacher

Jenna Ryin

Vocals
Jenna earned her Associates of Arts Degree from Musicians Institute’s Vocal Program. While studying there, she worked with recording engineers and formed bands with other musicians, expanding her recording and performance experiences. Her current band, The Other Words, was formed in 2013 and the group performs original sets throughout Southern California. Their latest single and music video for their hit Days Like Gold is available online. Jenna has a wide range of knowledge, a high level of skill, and a positive attitude, creating the perfect environment to make her vocal lessons fun and open the door for vocal improvement. She specializes in “full voice” development.
Schedule: Tuesday

Dan Shortley

Dan Shortley

Guitar, Banjo, Mandolin and Ukulele
Dan has taught guitar and banjo since earning his Music Education degree from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 2000.  His main guitar styles are Jazz/Fusion and Metal.  For banjo he teaches 3-Finger Bluegrass and Old Time/Clawhammer.  He also runs a home recording studio where he produces his own projects as well as recording demos for local artists.  Before moving from Las Vegas, his Smooth Jazz band “Forte” played the MGM Garden Arena as well as other events on their properties.  He is currently recording and performing his Rap/Metal project as well as his Electronic/Dance music available for free download on his website.
Visit Dan’s website at www.danshortley.com.
Schedule: Monday, Tuesday & Thursday