Theory and Ear Training


Mark Broschinsky, Theory
Trombonist Mark Broschinsky has been praised by the Rapid City Journal as a “true virtuoso on the instrument.” A zealous advocate of new music, he has commissioned numerous solo pieces, performs regularly with ensemble mise-en, and has appeared with New York-based ensembles Argento New Music Project, Talea Ensemble, and Tilt Brass. An active chamber musician, Mark is a founding member of the Guidonian Hand Trombone Quartet. The Hand has premiered numerous works and received grants from organizations such as Chamber Music America, the Barlow Foundation, and New Music USA. He has performed as a guest artist at the Casals Festival in Puerto Rico and with numerous orchestras, including the Utah Symphony Orchestra, the New World Symphony, and the Britten-Pears Festival Orchestra in England and has also presented solo recitals at numerous universities including the University of California – Santa Barbara, Brigham Young University, and Capital University. Mark was awarded the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Manhattan School of Music.


Mark Brown, Jazz Theory
Mark Philip Brown was born in Queens, NY in 1967. He started playing violin at age four in a Suzuki program and by the age of nine had added piano and guitar to his musical interests. When he was nine years old, his family moved to Venezuela and his interest in jazz led him to the upright bass. At thirteen, he started playing the bass guitar, which has been an important instrument in his professional career. At twenty-one, he began playing the saxophone and later added the bass clarinet to his list of instruments to practice. Mark has composed music in several styles, including jazz, samba, son, calypso, and several styles of Venezuelan folk music, including joropo, merengue and danza zuliana. In his teens, Mark studied music at several conservatories in Venezuela, including courses in theory and solfege, music history, harmony and counterpoint, voice, cello, classical guitar, and string bass. He later attended Manhattan School of Music and obtained his Bachelor's ('96) and Master’s ('98) degrees.  Mark has been teaching music at the MSM summer programs since 1995 and has composed for and conducted the jazz and Latin jazz bands, as well as teaching saxophone, theory, composition, and other courses. Mark has performed on bass and saxophone all over the world, including concerts in China, Turkey, Austria, France, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Paraguay, Colombia, Venezuela, Mexico, and Costa Rica, among others. Mark currently lives in Caracas, Venezuela. He is finishing a book of lead sheets of Venezuelan traditional music, having transcribed over 450 songs from the mostly oral tradition since 2001. The book will be published in April 2017.


Derek Cooper, Theory & Ear Training, Composition
Earning his Bachelor’s degree in Music Theory and Composition in 2009 from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Derek Cooper studied with American Prix de Rome winner Daniel Perlongo while also taking lessons with Jack Stamp, Christopher Marshal, and Richard Danielpour. Derek continued to study with Richard Danielpour, earning his Master’s degree in composition from Manhattan School of Music in 2014. In the Fall of 2014, Derek returned to Manhattan School of Music to begin his doctoral studies under Dr. Reiko Fueting as a doctoral teaching fellow.

Derek’s music has been described as being both haunting and touching at the same time as he tries to combine different worlds, both in and outside of music. His ability to clash familiar sound with fresh, exciting, and sometimes unsettling new sounds allows Derek to create an entirely new soundscape unique to him. Derek currently resides in Manhattan, where he teaches at Manhattan School of Music and teaches composition at Camp MSM. For more information and to hear samples of Derek’s work, visit: 


Heather Dahl, Theory
Clarinetist Heather Dahl enjoys a wide ranging career as a soloist, chamber musician, orchestral performer and devoted music educator. She is equally at home performing in esteemed concert venues such as Carnegie Hall and Chicago’s Symphony Center as she is performing in schools, libraries and senior centers throughout the community. Heather has performed with Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic, New Haven Symphony, Reading Symphony, and Chicago Civic Orchestra, is a founding member of Tempest Winds and the Aeros Quintet and has received numerous honors and awards including Grand Prize in the International Clarinet Association Orchestra Competition. Heather received her Bachelor of Music from the University of Michigan and her Master of Music degree from Manhattan School of Music.


Elad Kabilio, Theory
Praised by The New York Times for his playing “vibrantly”, “full of texture and nuance”, and with “marvelous imagination”, Israeli cellist Elad Kabilio is an active soloist, chamber musician and teaching artist. Among his recent performances are Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, the Morgan Library and the Joyce Theater in New York City. He has also performed at the Aspen Music Festival, Young Artist Festival in Bayreuth – Germany and was featured on WQXR Radio. Mr. Kabilio collaborates frequently with dancers from top ballet companies such as New York City Ballet and the American Ballet Theater, and served as the music director of Ballet Next (2011-2014). He currently serves as the Music Director of the Ashley Bouder Project, based in New York City. Mr. Kabilio has taught in numerous schools both in Israel and New York City, and is currently teaching thru Manhattan School of Music’s distance learning program and at the summer camp. Mr. Kabilio is committed to bringing music to new audiences and is the founder of MusicTalks, a chamber music series devoted to breaking down the barriers between musicians and audience by taking advantage of the intimacy that chamber music provides. Mr. Kabilio has received numerous awards throughout his career. He was selected by the Israel Ministry of Culture as an “Outstanding Musician” and served in the Israeli Army as a member of the Israeli Defense Force string quartet, performing concerts throughout Israel. He was awarded second prize at the Buchmann-Mehta School of Music string competition where he also received the “Orchestra Excellence Award” from Maestro Zubin Mehta. Elad has performed with the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, under the baton of Daniel Barenboim, on tours in Europe and the US. He has also performed with conductors such as Zubin Mehta, Gustavo Dudamel, James Conlon, David Zinman, Leonard Slatkin, Itzhak Perlman and JoAnn Falletta. 


Isaac Kaplan, Theory
Isaac Kaplan is a dedicated trombonist and music teacher in the New York area.  Raised in Rossmoor and Long Beach, California, Isaac’s love of music ultimately brought him to New York City to continue his studies at Manhattan School of Music.  As a freelance musician, Isaac has performed in a wide variety of settings and venues, including Central Park Summerstage, Music Hall of Williamsburg, Segerstrom Hall, and Carnegie Hall.  He has had the privilege of performing with numerous artists, including George Porter Jr, Los Amigos Invisibles, Patrizio Buanne, and Michael McDonald.  He also leads a jazz trio that performs frequently around the New York area.

Isaac also has a strong passion for teaching.  He has been affiliated with the Precollege Division at Manhattan School of Music since 2007, jazz faculty as of 2012.  He has been a member of the Camp MSM staff since 2011, working in a variety of roles including theory /ear training faculty, trombone faculty, and administrative responsibilities.

Isaac maintains his own private teaching studio in New York. He holds Bachelor (’11) and Master (’13) degrees from Manhattan School of Music. 


Amir Khosrowpour, Theory & Ear Training
Described by the Los Angeles Times as having “irresistible verve, unpretentious directness, and fingers of steel,” pianist and composer Amir Khosrowpour “seeks out what is new and vital and delivers it with passion” (NY Concert Review). He recently toured Bulgaria, performing his original score to a puppet theater piece, as well as solo improvisational concerts. His keyboard duo, Corky Has a Band, released their second album, featuring prepared piano and electronics last year, and he is working on a solo album of improvisation to be released in early 2017. He works in the music department at The Horace Mann School and teaches at Camp MSM in the summer. Amir received his Bachelor's of Music at University of Kansas, and Master's and Doctorate degrees at Manhattan School of Music. He has been living and working as a professional musician in NYC for ten years.


Irena McGuffee, Theory & Ear Training
Originally from Bulgaria, violist Irena McGuffee is the recipient of numerous awards and distinctions including the MTNA chamber music award and the Boca Pops Scholarship Competition. She has performed under many renowned conductors, Leonard Slatkin, Pierre Boulez, Gunter Schuller, Charles Dutoit, and Kurt Masur, among others. Ms. McGuffee received her Master of Music degree from the Manhattan School of Music, and Bachelor degree Summa Cum Laude from the Harid Conservatory in Boca Raton, Florida. She regularly performs with the Berkshire Bach Ensemble, Mark Morris Dance Group, Matilda on Broadway and in chamber music settings in New York City, where she currently resides.


Karim Merchant, Theory
Karim was born in 1977 in London, England. He was already studying classical piano and violin when, at 16, he became attracted to jazz. As a teenager, he won several competitions, including the Daily Telegraph Young Jazz and Perrier Young Jazz Competitions.

From 1996 until 2000 he studied both jazz and classical piano at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, graduating with a Bachelor of Music Degree in jazz. While there, he participated in numerous workshops and lessons, including some given by artists such as Dave Liebman, John Patitucci, John Taylor, James Williams, and Randy Brecker. Ex-Dexter Gordon pianist Kirk Lightsey and ex-Jazz Messengers pianist Donald Brown are also among his former teachers.

From July 2000 until August 2004 he maintained a professional career as one of London’s most in-demand jazz musicians. During this time he played at many of London's top jazz establishments. He has also played at many other venues elsewhere in the UK and Europe, and jazz festivals such as Brecon (Wales), Manchester and Bratislava.

As a Masters degree student at Manhattan School of Music from 2004 until 2006, he studied under Kenny Barron. Since graduating, he has played at many venues, including some of New York’s staple jazz clubs like the Jazz Gallery, the 55 Bar and Fat Cat. He also plays regularly at the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem.

A sought-after teacher, he maintains a private studio, as well as being a teaching artist for the New York-based charity Midori & Friends. His other musical interests include contemporary gospel music, R'n'B and hip-hop, but he is always keen to discover new sounds and musical styles.

Manhattan School of Music Precollege faculty since 2007.


Sam Nester, Theory
Sam Nester is an Australian trumpet player based in New York. Mr. Nester has performed for Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival & Lincoln Center Out of Doors, the Beijing Modern Music Festival, Paris Opera Ballet, American Composer’s Orchestra, Stamford Symphony, Wordless Music Orchestra, TILT Brass, the Festival of New Trumpet Music, and as soloist for the New York Philharmonic’s Very Young Composers program. Mr. Nester is the recipient of the 2016 Brian Boak Outstanding Performer award. In 2015 he received a Kevin Spacey foundation Artist of Choice award, with the ensemble LATE SEA. In addition, he has been the recipient of a Dame Joan Sutherland grant for Music and two Australian Music Foundation awards. Mr. Nester graduated with a Bachelor of Music studies from the Queensland Conservatorium in 2007, furthering his studies and receiving First Class Honors from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts in 2009. During this time, he was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to attend the Manhattan School of Music where he received a Master of Music degree in 2012. Mr. Nester is currently completing a Doctorate of Musical Arts at the Manhattan School of Music, performs as a Teaching Artist for Bridge Arts Ensemble, and serves as the Artistic Administrator of Community Engagement at the Juilliard School.


Phil Rashkin, Theory
Phil Rashkin, a Los Angeles native, performs dynamically as a conductor, symphonic, and solo musician. He maintains an active schedule as a coach with Face the Music, as a conductor with Opera Upper West, and as an oboist with The Manhattan Symphonie and The Chelsea Symphony. Mr. Rashkin is a member of the shifting landscape of classical music: as a conductor for Opera Upper West’s immersive, real-time performance of Le nozze di Figaro; as a recipient of The Marin Alsop Entrepreneurial Award with the ensemble A Closer Look; as a teacher and coach at the Kaufman Center’s Special Music School and The Horace Mann School. Mr. Rashkin recently toured with Josh Groban for his new album Stages. Artists with whom Mr. Rashkin has worked include Wycliffe Gordon, Sasha Cooke, and Mark O’Connor. Mr. Rashkin attended Mannes College The New School for Music, where he received a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Music Performance. Mr. Rashkin's musicianship has been described as "particularly ravishing" (The Observer) and "choice, tersely delivered moments from Phil Rashkin.." (Lucid Culture)



Sean Richey, Jazz Theory & Ear Training
Sean Richey is a performing artist and music educator living in New York City. He is a graduate of the Manhattan School of Music's Jazz Arts Program. As an active freelance guitarist, Sean has performed with a variety of different productions at venues such Dizzy's Club Coca Cola, Monterey Jazz Festival, The Cutting Room, Central Park SummerStage, Rockwood Music Hall, National Center for the Performing Arts (Mumbai, India), The Mahindra Blues Festival, and many others. 

In 2008, he moved to NYC to study with Chris Rosenberg at the Manhattan School of Music. In that same year, Sean was the recipient of 2 Student Composition Awards for "Best Original Songs" from DownBeat Magazine. He was the recipient of the Monterey Jazz Festival's Gerald Wilson Big Band Composition Award,  and received the NY Regional Scholarship Award for Jazz Guitar from NFAA, Young Arts.

In 2012, he graduated from the Manhattan School of Music's Jazz Arts Program, receiving his BA in Jazz Performance and the Outreach Award.

He has taught Guitar Classes, Composition, Songwriting classes, & R&B Ensembles for the Manhattan School of Music’s Summer Camp since 2012 . From 2013-15, Sean worked with the True School of Music, in Mumbai, India as Head of the Guitar Department (2013), Course Director of Foundations Program (2014), & Course Director of Professional Certificate Program (2015).

Sean has taught for the Larchmont Music Academy, Camp Encore/Coda in Maine, & runs his own private teaching studio in Brooklyn NYC.