Wasatch Music Coaching Academy

 

675 South 400 East Salt Lake City, UT 84111

wasatchacademy@comcast.net

Tel: 801-560-6437

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  Our Teachers    

 

 

Our current team of teachers boasts over 600 cumulative years of professional performance experience, with extensive experience teaching privately, in public schools, as well as at the college level. We are dedicated to providing a real world music experience. We offer instruction and performance opportunities for all musical instruments, with application in all styles, as well as vocal instruction.

Dave Murphy - WMCA Director / drums / percussion / keyboards / ensembles

Born in San Francisco, CA. Developed a passion for music very early in life and started piano at age 4, which continued through high school. At about age 11, drums and percussion became the instrument of choice however, and shortly after at the age of 13, starting drum lessons as well as gigging locally beginning at age 15. 

 

Graduated from the University of Utah in May of 1979 with a Bachelor of Music.  Graduated in May of 1980 from the University of Miami with a Master of Music. Taught in the public schools and gigged until July 1994. In January of 2004, opened Wasatch Music Coaching Academy, a long time dream and left financial services behind.
 

Artists performed with over the years include Ira Sullivan, Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry, Chubby Checker, Platters, Tokens, Coasters, Del Shannon, Ronnie Spector, Bernadette Peters, Joan Rivers, Donny Most, Buddy Hacket, Hal Linden, the Marin Symphony, and the Utah Symphony.

Greg Midgley - piano / keyboards / guitar / drums / ensembles

I began my career as a performing musician with local Salt Lake bands in the late 90's.  I have backed up artists such as Wanda Jackson, Andre Williams, and Shorty Gilbert (former bassist with Howlin'; Wolf). Currently playing keyboards with Utah country-rock group "Triggers and Slips" and laptop/guitar in "Salt Lake Electric Ensemble" (in 2017 the latter released a recording of Phillip Glass' "Music With Changing Parts" on his own Orange Mountain Label). Apart from occasional freelance session work, I focus on my own solo electronic compositions. I have been teaching since 2008, first with the Rock and Roll Academy in North Salt Lake, and then Wasatch Music Coaching Academy, where I currently lead student ensembles and teach private lessons on piano/keyboards and guitar.

I believe each student has unique goals with music, and needs a teacher who can encourage them in developing a life-long enjoyment of music. I emphasize an approach where learning fundamentals of sight-reading, technique, and music theory can build a foundation to pursue the styles they have a passion for. My experience as both a teacher and a student has taught me how significant it is to have a personal connection to the music you are studying, and opportunities to perform and share at every stage of development.

Amanda Banks - vocals

Growing up in a very musical family, Amanda has always had a strong love of music.  Starting with 10 years of piano lessons at age 8, she then realized how much she loves to sing when she made the lead in her Elementary School musical in the fifth grade.  She started taking voice lessons at age 14 and was in every single choir and ensemble through Jr High and High School.  Amanda earned a bachelor's degree at the University of Utah where she was in multiple choirs and ensembles, and participated in numerous opera’s and operetta’s such as Candide, Pirates of Penzance, The Mikado, The Magic Flute and Little Women.  Under the direction of Dr. Brady Allred, she toured England and France with the University of Utah Singers, taking first place in festivals and competitions. She was also in a production of The Sound of Music at Hale Center Theatre, and participated in a professional caroling group called the Heritage Singers at This is the Place Monument Park.

Amanda loves to teach all genres and all ages, and has been teaching at WMCA for over ten years now! She teaches her students healthy vocal techniques to create good habits and longevity for the voice.  She is a believer in being true to your voice, and keeping it as natural as possible.  She also teaches how to perform confidently on stage and incorporates Master Classes to give experience performing in front of others. Performing is about sharing your talents and abilities for others to lift them up through the power of song. 
 

Barry Mork - guitar / bass /ensembles

An accomplished guitarist with real world experience in the music and recording industry, Barry brings a multi-faceted approach to his teaching method. He is also a graduate of the prestigious Guitar Institute of Technology in Hollywood, California.


With an emphasis on effective learning and practice habits, he is able to make difficult concepts understandable. "We focus on process and progress, not perfection. Setting achievable yet challenging goals is a major component of the process"


In addition to his work as a guitarist and guitar instructor, Barry is also a talented audio engineer and music producer. He has worked with an entire gamut of artists in his studio, from local talent to legendary and award-winning musicians and songwriters. 

Sylvia Shore - piano

Sylvia Shore has been teaching piano for 39 years, with an emphasis in beginning to intermediate piano. She is former chair of the Central Davis Chapter for the Federation of Music Clubs piano festival, and has students ranging from ages 4 to 80. She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education with a minor in music from Brigham Young University. Sylvia has enjoyed teaching at Wasatch Music Coaching Academy for over ten years, and is a highly valued member of their faculty. In her spare time, she loves to garden, sing in choirs, and spend time with family. 

Dave Bowen - bass / guitar / violin / cello / mandolin / banjo / ukulele

Melanie Shore - piano / keyboards / arranging / composition

Melanie holds a Master’s degree in Jazz Studies from the University of Utah, and is an associate professor of jazz piano at Snow College, University of Utah, and Utah Valley University.

 

Over her career, she has performed with an array of artists, including Chuck Berry, Il Divo, Lea Salonga, David Archuleta, Collin Raye, Debby Boone, Restless Heart, and Teddy Gentry from the Grammy Award winning group Alabama, among many others. She has played for many national Broadway tours including her stay as associate music director/conductor for the first U.S. national tour of Roald Dahl and Tim Minchin’s Matilda The Musical. She performs with neo-soul sensation, Joslyn, and is touring with the soul/funk/fusion group led by Kris Johnson of the Count Basie Big Band and Lulu Fall of The Great Comet of 1812.

 

She is also the arranger for the Homecoming Spectacular series, where she has written for renowned artists Gladys Knight, Kristen Chenoweth, Peter Hollens, Lexi Walker, and Colbie Caillat. Melanie regularly arranges for the world’s largest choral-orchestral organization, Millennial Choirs and Orchestras, as well as for “Downbeat Award” winner, The Crescent Super Band..

Dan Featherstone   -   guitar / bass

Alan Michael   -  sax (all) / clarinet / flute

Sylvia Hartley  -  vocals

John Dilley  -  vocals

Jacob Greer  -  trumpet

Rich Dixon  -  guitar

Max Muscolino  -  bass

Matt Kingsbury  -  trombone

Merrill Smith  -  piano / keyboards

Dan Waldis  -  piano / keyboards / theory