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Staff & Music Teachers

Nick Valente

Nick Valente, Owner and Director. Nick was born and still resides in the Rochester, NY area. Earning a Master’s degree in Strategic Management, Nick has worked as an executive for multi-billion dollar global organizations for more than 25 years.  An accomplished musician, songwriter, and recording artist, Nick has always dreamed of having a business focused on music education, performance, and recording services. He is passionate about bringing the life lessons in collaboration, creativity and fun that come from music education to the Penfield community. The musical artists that provide inspiration to Nick are Led Zeppelin, Michael Schenker and Rush.

Dr. Amy Valente

Dr. Amy Valente, Co-owner. As a previous senior manager in various local banking, online learning, and marketing businesses and a Business Professor at a local community college, Amy’s passion is education. Amy earned a Doctorate degree of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from University of Florida, and an MBA from St. John Fisher College. Amy loves to listen to music and going to concerts. Her favorite bands include Diamond Head, Michael Schenker Group, Rainbow, Queen, UFO, Yngwie Malmsteen and all the music that Nick writes and produces.

Danielle V.

Danielle V., Marketing Director. Danielle studied at SUNY Fredonia earning a Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design and a minor in Business. For the last 3 years, Danielle has worked as a graphic designer for both Fahy-Williams Publishing and Bosch Security and Communications. Although she does not play any instruments, Danielle loves listening to all types of music especially country, pop and hip-hop and is excited to share her artistic talents through the marketing and social media of Bach to Rock.

Julie Miller

Julie M., Manager. A graduate of SUNY's College at Brockport studying Communication as her major and Music Business as her minor, Julie has had a love for music and the arts from a young age. As a singer/songwriter who plays acoustic and electric guitar as well as piano, Julie enjoys playing coffee shops and café gigs in her spare time. While indie folk music is a favorite genre to write and listen to, Julie's musical taste goes far and wide from John Mayer and The Avett Brothers to Elton John and Tom Petty. As the former president of a student-run record label, “Golden Eagle Records”, and former Venue Manager at the Rochester International Jazz Festival, Julie is so excited to continue her journey of spreading the love of music throughout Rochester with Bach to Rock!

Duncan H.

Duncan H., Manager. Originally from the UK, Duncan has a Post-Graduate degree in Education from Bristol University, as well as a Masters degree from Royal Holloway, University of London. With a background in both business and education, he is excited to be part of the Bach to Rock team and help spread the enjoyment that playing music brings. A musician himself, Duncan plays guitar, piano and is a singer/songwriter who has performed and recorded music as a solo musician and in bands. Influences and favorite bands include The Pixies, Neil Young, Pearl Jam and Gregory Alan Isakov.

Caitlin B.

Caitlin B., Assistant Manager and Event Coordinator Caitlin has a degree in music from The University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee with a focus in classical vocal performance. During her time at Sewanee, she managed theatrical and musical productions in various forms and roles. After graduating, she spent some time as a Curator for Sewanee’s renowned Music Listening Library and working for a creative consulting firm. Her two favorite genres of music are opera and jazz, but she tries to listen to a little bit of everything. Currently on queue: Odetta’s Spiritual Trilogy, Franco Corelli in Tosca, Cécile McLorin Salvant Le Mal de Vivre, and Sibelius Symphony No. 2 conducted by Bernstein. Caitlin is thrilled to join the staff at Bach to Rock!

Adrian J.

Adrian J., Music Specialist Hailing from Austin Texas, Adrian studied at the McCallum Fine Arts. He now is Viola performance major at the Eastman School of Music. Previously, Adrian taught at another Bach to Rock in Texas and teaches violin, viola, and piano, among other instruments. As a performer, Adrian has performed as the Principal Violist of the Interlochen World Youth Symphony Orchestra, section violist in the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra, and the winner of the 2018 Rising Stars competition. Adrian is extremely proud to be the second recipient of the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra Diversity fellowship.

Anna

Anna is a current student at Nazareth College for a Master's Degree in Music Education and received her bachelor's degree from Shenandoah University in Music Therapy. Anna's primary instrument is voice; however, she also enjoys teaching violin, piano, guitar, viola, and ukulele. She has loved music starting at a very young age and has enjoyed exploring multiple different genres of music such as classical, classic rock, and fiddle/ bluegrass. Anna is ecstatic that she gets to continue to be a part of the Bach to Rock community and has continued to enjoy making personal connections with each of her students.

Cassandra C.

Cassandra C. Music Specialist. Music is Cassandra's passion, along with a strong attraction to the arts. Beginning with acting classes at the age of 5, Cassandra instantly fell in love with the musical aspect of acting, singing and dancing. As Cassandra got a little older, violin became her main instrument and still remains so. Being in the orchestra was Cassandra's biggest joy throughout school, competing in NYSSMA violin competitions, performing in regular school concerts, and school musicals, including first chair for the production of “Cinderella”. That was one of the greatest experiences of Cassandra's life and it was at that moment that Cassandra felt a connection to being on stage. Cassandra is currently a part of the Auburn Chamber Orchestra in Auburn, NY and takes great pride in providing the community with classical music. Cassandra earned a Bachelor's degree from Empire State College in Music and Dance Education.

Dan K.

Dan K.  Music Specialist. Dan is a composer, percussionist, and multi-instrumentalist with a deep interest in exploring music from around the world. Dan earned a Bachelor's degree in Music Composition and a Master's degree in Music Composition and Theory from SUNY Fredonia. Dan has taught college level composition students privately and in group settings, as well as given lectures to entire composition departments. As a composer, Dan’s music has been performed in over a dozen major US cities as well as in Guangzhou, China. As a performer, Dan has been in several local bands playing original music, and enjoys listening to classic progressive rock, especially Yes, Genesis, and Emerson Lake and Palmer. Phish and Led Zeppelin are by far his biggest musical influences in the pop world, while favorite composers are Bela Bartok and Igor Stravinsky. Dan is currently working on the score for a new independent video game being developed in Rochester, NY.

Dan M.

Dan M., Music Specialist & Audio Engineer Dan has been involved with music since the 4th grade and hasn’t looked back since. Dan’s primary instrument is voice, but he also teaches piano, trumpet, and recording arts. Dan earned an Associate of Science in Music Recording Technology from FLCC and a Bachelor of Music in Music Education (Vocal) from SUNY Fredonia.  Dan has appeared in numerous operas, sang in multiple choirs, and performed in SUNY Fredonia’s premier all-male acapella group, Much More Chill. Dan has taught in both West Irondequoit and Penfield districts, and was a studio musician and tutor at FLCC. Dan is very passionate about choral music and is a staff singer for St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. Dan has a wide variety of musical tastes, everything from classical music to hip-hop. Some of his favorite artists include John Mayer, Drake, Kanye West, Zac Brown Band, and Michael Bublé. Dan cares deeply about using his skills as a musician and audio engineer to help other artists achieve their musical goals and is very excited to join the Bach to Rock team!

Dominic V.

Dominic V., Music Instructor Intern. Dominic V attends Nazareth college where he is earning his degree in Music. His primary instrument is the bassoon, and he also plays saxophone, ukulele, bass guitar, clarinet, and keyboard and studies voice. He has performed in various ensembles including the Chamber Singers, Symphonic Band, and Rock Ensemble, as well as having participated in a recent opera, Dido and Aeneas as Aeneas. While at school, he also works for the concert hall, assisting with concerts. He is excited to assist with summer camps at Bach to Rock! Some of his favorite musicians include Franz Schubert, Charlie Parker, Paul Hanson, The Wonder Years, Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties, TWRP, Dan Avidan and Brian Wecht, Yung Gravy, American Football, My Chemical Romance, Colter Wall, Dodie Clark, Free Throw, Green Day, Modern Baseball, John Prine, and Tally Hall, among many others.

Jack C.

Jack C. Beat Refinery DJ Instructor. Jack grew up in Penfield and played various instruments throughout the years including saxophone and viola. Jack enjoys a wide variety of music genres including hip-hop and his influences include Kanye West, Drake and J. Cole. Jack teaches scratching and mixing and is excited to work with and develop future DJ’s in Upstate New York in the Beat Refinery program.

Michael K.

Michael K. Music Specialist. Michael is a multi-instrumentalist who teaches guitar, bass, piano, saxophone, ukulele and drums. Having taught music lessons to a variety of age groups and skill levels, Michael believes that music is the great equalizer for all people. Earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications from SUNY Albany, Michael has also worked in various professional positions, but believes that music is the biggest motivator and Bach to Rock Penfield provides a worthwhile career. Michael is inspired by many artists, including Avett Brothers, Incubus, Van Morrison, Jack Johnson, and Modest Mouse, and just about anything that will make people get up and dance. 

Michael M.

Michael M. Music Specialist. Michael is a graduate from SUNY Fredonia with a degree in Music Performance. Michael is a multi-instrumentalist and able to teach a wide range of instruments, including piano, voice, drums and guitar, with his specialism in classical guitar. An enthusiastic performer, he is currently involved in two local projects and is excited to be part of the Bach to Rock family and share his enthusiasm for music and performance. Michael lists Bela Bartok, Agustin Barrios, the Grateful Dead, Phish, Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones and Radiohead as some of his influences.  

Paul O.

Paul O., Music Instructor, Audio Engineer & DJ Instructor Paul is a London-born bass player and producer. As a producer and musician he has received both national and international airplay with his music on MTV, BET, VH1, BBC radio, NBC and ABC. He has over 10 years of teaching experience. He has appeared on The Tonight Show, The Late Show and Good Morning America. After graduating from Berklee College of Music, he toured both nationally and internationally with a variety of notable artists. Some of his favorite artists and influences range from Parliament Funkadelic, Miles Davis and Radiohead.

Rachel B.

Rachel B. Music Specialist. Rachel is a vocal/general music teacher in a local public school district earning a Bachelors of Music in Music Education, a Masters in Inclusive Childhood Education, and a second Masters in Music Education from Nazareth College. As a mezzo-soprano, Rachel’s primary instrument is voice with experience teaching piano, guitar, violin and ukulele. While growing up in Elma NY, Rachel knew she was going to be a music teacher from a young age with earliest childhood memories including sitting in front of the piano with her nana playing music by ear. A few of Rachel’s favorite artists include Elton John, Ingrid Michaelson, Mary Lambert, Wilco, Ani DiFranco & The Goo Goo Dolls.

Renee F.

Renee F., Marketing Coordinator is a graduate of Johnson and Wales University in Providence, RI, with a Bachelor's Degree in Hospitality & Event Management. Renee's musical background is extensive, including her participation in choral groups, clubs and musical theater. Renee has taken both vocal and piano instruction at Bach to Rock Penfield. She has performed as lead singer of B2R adult rock band, Shades of Soul and as part of a band with her daughter and father. She is enthusiastic about Marketing for Bach to Rock Penfield, and loves to spread the joy of music to everyone she meets.

Sarah R.

Sarah R. Music Specialist. Sarah was born and still resides in Rochester, NY and is a NY State certified music teacher (K-12) who has been teaching music for over 20 years. She is a multi-instrumentalist who has taught concert band, marching band, jazz band, general music, music theory, brass, woodwind, percussion and piano. She earned an Associate’s degree of Science in Performing Arts from MCC, and a Bachelor’s degree of Music in Music Education at the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam, and a Master’s degree of Music in Education from the University at Buffalo. Sarah is passionate about teaching music because she loves music and enjoys fostering a love for music, and watching students grow. She believes that teaching music is fun, and learning music is fun for people of all ages. Bach to Rock is a perfect place to do this!

Spencer K.

Spencer K., Music Specialist. Spencer has been playing drums since he was 5 years old and piano since he was in middle school. He graduated from Nazareth college in 2019, earning a B.S. in Music/Business with a specialization in percussion and a secondary in piano. Ever since he was little, he has been in love with the arts. The passion, emotion, and beauty that comes from music has kept him drawn in throughout his high school, college, and adult life. Most recently he was a drummer on a cruise ship, where he played production shows, backed up guest entertainers, and performed jazz music in lounges around the ship. He likes all music, but rock and jazz are his favorite to play.

Stan

Stan M. Music Specialist. Stan is a local freelance performer and music educator currently attending Nazareth College for a Master's degree in Double Bass Music Performance and Pedagogy. Stan focuses on multiple genres ranging from classical to rock; most recently was a member of the freak-folk group Multibird. Incorporating elements of rock and pop, Multibird had the opportunity to tour Europe in 2016. Currently, Stan is focusing on launching a jazz based group called the Stan Martinelli Project.

Tim K.

Tim K. Music Specialist. Tim is a multi-instrumentalist and local singer songwriter with over 30 years of experience playing with local bands and teaching students.  Tim has a strong background in guitar, bass, banjo, mandolin and vocal performance and really enjoys helping students to develop a strong musical foundation by making music fun, relevant and inclusive.  He believes as Plato said “music gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.”  Tim has diverse taste in Americana music, blues, rock, jazz, bluegrass and bands such as the Beatles, Dylan, The Band, Jimmy Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Radiohead, John Mayer and Wilco to name a few. Tim wants to give back to the community by helping all students achieve their goals and dreams and believes that Bach to Rock provides the ideal approach, the right tools and an environment that will allow all students to develop a love for music and achieve their full potential.

Tim L.

Tim L. has been a professional DJ for 30 years. He got his first set of turntables at 15 and he immediately fell in love with the craft. He began DJing school dances and was a DJ in a few teen clubs. He went on to successfully DJ in many adult clubs and started to DJ weddings. Tim has worked with many mobile DJ businesses in Rochester and Buffalo. Tim and his business partner Tony own and operate Tones Entertainment in Upstate New York. Tim has a deep passion for what he does. He even still has all of his crates of vinyl records he has amassed throughout the years!

Victoria

Victoria is a graduate from Nazareth College with a degree in Music Therapy. As a multi-instrumentalist, she enjoys playing and teaching the saxophone, piano, guitar, flute, ukulele, and voice. Victoria also enjoys playing a variety of genres from folk to jazz, however her favorite genres include jazz and bossa nova. Victoria’s greatest musical influences are John Coltrane and Esperanza Spalding. She is most passionate about helping her students to grow in confidence and blossom as musicians, and enjoys building authentic relationships and community with others through making music.

Will D.

Will D. is a graduate of SUNY Geneseo with degrees in Communication and Political Science. Will is currently pursuing a master’s degree in political science from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. Will has loved music from a young age and has been playing the drums since 2009 and recently began playing the bass as well. In high school, he was awarded the Louis Armstrong jazz award and went on to play in the jazz ensemble at Geneseo, while also performing in his own bands. Will’s favorite artists include the Grateful Dead, Vulfpeck, The Wonder Years, Phish, and Pup.

Why B2R?

  • Individual instruction with proprietary curriculum
  • Students are motivated by playing with others in a band
  • A band builds teamwork, develops social skills, fosters self-esteem and leads to lasting friendships.
  • Everyone learns faster playing music they like
  • Students are motivated to learn when they see early results
  • Introducing very young children to music supports cognitive development and motor skills.

B2R Curriculum

  • A well-balanced music education consists of Music Theory, Technique and Repertoire.
  • Students learn faster playing music they like.
  • Simplified versions of modern songs allow students to see results more quickly.
  • Audio recordings of each simplified arrangement are available to students. This allows them to hear how their part should sound.
  • Lessons are catered to the needs of each student's learning style.