Private Music Lessons

Is your student ready to take their music-making to the next level?  Private music lessons give students and families a special one-on-one relationship with mentors who look at each student individually and then tailor a musical approach specifically to match their musical abilities.  Did you know that some of the best professional musicians still take private lessons?  That’s because music is a lifelong art; there’s always something new to explore.  And, a well-matched private mentor/student relationship can leave a lasting impression on a child’s musical life!

Private lesson times and days are scheduled through the private teachers according to their availability and location.  You can find out more about private teacher options by contacting them directly (information is listed below).  Each private teacher coordinates their own studio and can tell you about their philosophy, expectations, schedules, teaching locations, and fees.  We encourage students to take outside lessons to further enrich their music learning experiences!

MS students interested in pursuing private lessons during the school day must receive approval from their advisor and Mrs. Boero. Please e-mail Mrs. Boero at and your child’s advisor when starting the process of scheduling lessons for any MS students.

Click below for a detailed profile:

BRASS (Instructor: Dr. Patricia Backhaus)

Contact Information –, 262.993.1834

Dr. Patricia Backhaus teaches private trumpet lessons to Middle and Upper School students. Pat earned her DMA in trumpet performance from the University of Minnesota where she studied with her mentor, David Baldwin.

In addition to running her Milwaukee trumpet studio, Pat has performed as a trumpet and cornet soloist in both the US and Europe.  Currently she is the Music Director of the Studio Orchestra in Madison and the Shorewood Concert Band.  Pat’s former students perform in world class orchestras, earn Downbeat magazine awards as outstanding soloists, are successful music educators, and perform for the sheer joy of making music in countless community groups.

GUITAR (Instructor: Andrew Trim)


Andrew Trim is a guitarist and composer.

Based in the midwest, Trim resides in Milwaukee and splits his time between his home and Chicago performing and collaborating with many of the talented and unique musicians in the region. He has released five records as a leader and has recorded and performed as a sideman with many others.

Hanami, his primary musical project, has released two albums to critical acclaim. The music from their second album “The Only Way to Float Free” on ears&eyes Records was premiered at the Chicago Jazz Festival and the release of the album was partially funded by an artist grant from the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs. The group has been praised for their “personable sound with all kinds of distinguishing marks” (Dave Sumner, Bird is the Worm), their “graceful and musical poise” (Paul Acquaro, Free Jazz Collective) and their “innate, organically-generated aesthetic” (Doug Simpson, Audiophile Audition).

Trim has performed with musicians such as Charles Rumback, Jason Stein, Mai Sugimoto, Devin Drobka, Kurt Schweitz, Jeremy Cunningham, Dave Miller, Greg Ward, Matt Ulery, Quin Kirchner, Matt Gold, Nate Lepine, Russ Johnson, Jamie Breiwick, Jonathan Greenstein, John Christensen, Chris Madsen, Matt Carroll, James Davis, Dan Thatcher, Danny Meyer, John Tate, Matt Fuller, Aakash Mittal, and many more. He has also performed as a sideman in ensembles such as The Aluminum Group, Rock Falls, Lady Cannon, Ted Sirota’s Heavyweight Dub feat. The Scientist, Meatbute: Chicago’s Premier Meatloaf Tribute Band and many more.

When not performing, Trim is an active educator teaching guitar, jazz & improvisation, music theory, and composition lessons. He is currently available for lessons privately and through Maestro Makers, a Milwaukee based lesson organization. Starting in the fall of 2019, he will be joining the excellent music program at the Prairie School in Racine, WI as staff guitar instructor. Trim holds his M.M. in Jazz Performance and Pedagogy from the University of Colorado, a B.A. in Music from Colorado Christian University, and a Certificate from New York University’s Summer Jazz Guitar Intensive.


Phone: (414) 350-5047

Mark Davis is an accomplished pianist and an influential educator who has performed with jazz luminaries Benny Golson, Slide Hampton, Tom Harrell, Jimmy Heath, Brian Lynch, Charles McPherson, and Phil Woods, among others. Mark has taught piano lessons in the Milwaukee area for 30 years. He serves as the artistic director of the Milwaukee Jazz Institute and is the author of the Hal Leonard Jazz Piano Method and the Hal Leonard Jazz Piano Method – Book 2. Mark specializes in teaching jazz piano to students who have some experience playing the piano.

Some of his students study jazz while also pursuing classical studies with another instructor. Students learn techniques for jazz improvisation and play repertoire that enables them to participate in a jam session or to join a jazz group. Mark is also available to teach jazz improvisation and theory to students of any instrument or to work with vocalists who want to gain experience singing with jazz accompaniment. Many of Mark’s former students have gone on to successful careers in music, most notably Dan Nimmer, pianist with Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra.

For more information visit

PERCUSSION/DRUMMING (Instructor: Randy Maio)

Contact Information – 262.498.9599

Randy Maio is a percussionist who loves to play all kinds of music, and his list of accomplishments certainly speaks to this! He has had a career as a full-time and part-time musician for over the past 40 years. This includes playing at all of the Milwaukee festivals with Mayor Meyers folk band, playing symphony music in Germany, Hawaiian music in Hawaii, jazz, big band, top 40, country, opera and Latin. Additionally, Randy has been the staff percussionist at Ch10/36, he has played in around 120 professional & amateur musicals, he has played at Festa Italiana & State Fair, and he has recorded with “Opus” playing with a variety of artists like Jack Grassel, Nick Contorno.

PIANO (Instructor: Jim Sodke)

Contact Information – 

James Sodke teaches private lessons on piano and keyboards, and teaches students at all levels. He is fluent in all styles, including classical and jazz. He has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Music Education from UW Milwaukee, is an Associate Lecturer in music at UW-Parkside, and was the musical director for musicals at Carthage College. He is the co-director of Lakeshore Conservatory of Music, the Director of Traditional Music at Lutheran Church of the Resurrection in Racine Wisconsin, and is a freelance editor, arranger, and engraver for Hal Leonard Publishing.

James Sodke has appeared with the national tours of: Dancin’, Zorba, Camelot, Chorus Line, Stop the World, the Rockettes, South Pacific, Grease, 42nd St., Lou Rawls, Gladys Knight, The Moody Blues, The Mills Brothers, The Temptations, The Drifters, Danny and the Jrs. and Little Anthony.

He has performed with jazz greats Stanley Jordan, The Dorsey Band, and Dianne Schuur, and performed with The Milwaukee, Racine, Kenosha, and Waukesha Symphony Orchestras, the Milwaukee Civic and Chamber Orchestras, and Present Music. He has been a clinician/guest artist for the Kenosha, Racine, Milwaukee, Cudahy, Wausau, and Bowler public schools, and the Rhythm section clinician for Wisconsin Honors Jazz Band.

STRINGS (Instructor: Julie Roubik)

Contact Information – Email:

Suzuki violin and viola teacher, Ms. Bamberger Roubik holds a B.M. summa cum laude, from the University of Minnesota and M.M. from the HARTT School of Music, both in viola performance and Suzuki pedagogy.

Viola teachers include Roland Vamos, Korey Konkol, Victoria Chiang, and Lawrence Dutton of the Emerson String Quartet. An active member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas (SAA) and the Suzuki Association of Wisconsin (SAW), she has studied Suzuki pedagogy, in both violin and viola, with Teri and David Einfeldt, Nancy Lokken, Mark Bjork, Carrie Reuning, Susan Kempter, Betsy Stuen-Walker and Dr. Julia Hardie.

Ms. Bamberger Roubik was the violinist for Jane Seymour’s Hollywood Star party and a back up musician for artists such as Brad Little, Lorna Luft, Rita Coolidge, Keiko Matsui and Philip Dizack. She is a regular member of the Kenosha, Racine and Festival City Symphonies.

Ms. Bamberger Roubik was a recipient of the 2014 Suzuki Association of the Americas teacher scholarship, the 2013 American Suzuki Institute teacher scholarship, and is a past recipient of the Civic Music Association of Milwaukee award for musical achievement in the community. Students of Julie’s have won awards from the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music Scholarships, the Racine Symphony Young Artists Competition, the Janet Ruggieri Viola Scholarship, the Wisconsin State Music Association and have been accepted into the Suzuki Youth Orchestra of the Americas.

In addition to teaching, Ms. Bamberger Roubik blogs for, and was invited to write for The Strad magazine. She is currently pursuing her Certification in Dalcroze education, an experiential way of knowing music through the body, at the Dalcroze School of the Rockies with Jeremy Dittus.

VIOLIN & PIANO (Instructor: Kim Jensen)

Contact Information –  262.456.0179 /

Kim Jensen is a former Prairie alumna and graduate of Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. After graduating, Kim worked at Lakeview Neuro-Rehabilitation Center in Waterford, Wisconsin, where she initiated a music therapy program for adults with brain injuries. Kim’s mission or musical philosophy is largely influenced by the violin and piano instruction she received as a child: Foremost, to foster the love of music; furthermore, to provide students with the skills needed to create and compose music (even in the most basic sense) and to appreciate and recognize the possibilities the study of music possesses, ultimately, enriching the lives of each student. For the past eight years, Kim has been giving private piano instruction to children and adults at the beginner to early-intermediate level. She serves as the accompanist for Racine Christian Reformed Church’s Children’s Choir and church services.

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VOICE (Instructor: Ally Smalley)

Contact; 920-238-6208

As a classically trained vocal musician and an RYT-200 yoga instructor, Ally Smalley believes in a holistic approach to teaching voice by connecting vocal production and technique to traditional yoga based breathing, meditation and movement.

Through weekly private voice lessons and/or coaching, a student is investing in their overall musical and personal growth. Students can expect to explore breath work, music vocabulary, vocal technique, classical and musical theatre repertoire, and mindfulness practices for presentations and performance anxiety.

Ally holds a BA in Vocal Music and K-12 Music Education from Luther College. She received her yoga training through Healium Hot Yoga in Milwaukee, WI. Additionally, she has completed Orff Graduate Music Levels 1, 2, and 3 at the University of St. Thomas and most recently taught music at The Prairie School for nine years while serving as Performing Arts Department Chair for five years.

A resonant voice is within everyone, and together we can uncover its power by finding beauty in the process, trust in ourselves, and a deep desire to explore what is possible! 

WIND (Instructor: Curt Hanrahan)

Contact Information: ; 262-412-2561 (call or text)

Curt Hanrahan holds a bachelor of music degree from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a Master’s Degree in multiple woodwinds from University of Wisconsin-Madison. He also served as the Head of Jazz Studies at the UWM, teaching saxophone and directing the jazz program, a position he had held since 1990.

He co-founded the Lakeshore Conservatory of Music in Racine, Wisconsin, and has performed with the Milwaukee Symphony and has played with Tommy Dorsey, Jimmy Dorsey, Nelson Riddle, Harry Connick Jr., and Frank Sinatra Jr. Orchestras.

He has also worked with artists such as Tony Bennett, Rosemary Clooney, Cab Calloway, The Arturo Sandoval Big Band, Manhattan Transfer, Diane Schurr, Bobby Caldwell, Doc Severinsen, Frank Sinatra Jr., Ray Charles and Johnny Mathis.

He performs regularly throughout the Milwaukee area and has performed at Fireside Theater, Skylight Theater, and with countless national touring shows including West Side Story, Hairspray, Spamalot, The Color Purple, Dreamgirls, Legally Blonde, and Little Shop of Horrors.

Curt has recorded with Jack Grassel, Jan Garber, Nick Contorno, Jamie Breiwick and the contemporary jazz group Opus. He has released has released three solo CDs; “Hang Time”, “To Be Again”, and “Souljourney” on the Blujazz label.

Curt is deeply involved with expanding the Milwaukee jazz scene and has assisted developing a jazz network that has already created a draft strategic plan for creating more venues, festivals, educational opportunities, and fans in Milwaukee.

The effectiveness of private lessons comes down to what a student does between lessons, and this is when students develop the skills  that enable them to practice becoming self-directed and self-empowered.  Thus, they learn both about artistic creativity and life skills in their lessons.