WESTCHASE MUSIC SCHOOL
Meet the wonderful teachers and staff that serve our students everyday at Westchase Music School
Instruments: Piano, Violin, Viola, Music Technology Lab Manager
Background: Mr. Trevor had an interest in education at a young age. After heart surgery left him unable to participate in sports or recess in the fifth grade, Mr. Trevor became a teacher’s assistant, and his love for teaching began to blossom. In the sixth grade, Mr. Trevor began playing the viola. He would go on to become viola section leader in high school. Mr. Trevor’s high school orchestra director Heather Grier (world-renowned violinist and frequent performer with Andrea Bocelli) inspired him to pursue music education as a career.
Mr. Trevor attended the Ybor City campus of Hillsborough Community College in 2008, which is also the year he began teaching music lessons full-time. He became active in student government, and went on to become an award-winning music club president. Mr. Trevor moved on to the University of South Florida in 2011, where he played viola in the symphony orchestra and in several string quartets. Here he studied music education extensively and he also studied orchestral conducting with Dr. William Weidrich. After graduating from USF in 2013, Mr. Trevor taught in several middle, elementary, and high schools. He began teaching at Westchase Music School in 2017, and as of 2022 has been working in the music education field for 13 years.
Instruments: Piano, Organ, Classical Guitar, Composer Station and Organ Station Creator
Background: Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics and Natural Sciences from the University of Zurich and Lucrene. Additional studies in education, pedagogy and didatics. He pursued a career as a high school math and science teacher for over 15 years. When he moved to the US in 1990, Hanspeter trained a a pilot with instrument rating and managed a flight school for 16 years. Now he is a web designer, movie maker, and multimedia specialist for notable local companies and Overseas Enterprises. He is fluent in four languages: German, French, English, and Spanish.
Music: He has 50 years of background experience abd was a part-time church organist for many years. He also studied at the St. Pete College Organ, Piano, and Composition. He is a composer and wrote numerous pieces for piano and organ, as well as two school musicals. He is an active organ builder and is a consultant for room acoustics for various halls and churches
Ms. Kelsey Amerzee
Instruments: Voice, Piano, Guitar, Ukulele, Summer Camp Lead
Background: Kelsey has been in the Tampa Bay area since 2012. She grew to love the area going to school at The University of Tampa until she graduated with her BFA in Musical Theatre in 2016. Since August of 2016, she has been teaching here at Westchase Music School. From master classes to summer camps, group lessons to one on one, she has enjoyed every minute helping make WMS the best place to have a musical experience. In addition to her musical obsessions, Ms. Kelsey loves writing, painting, reading, and perfecting family recipes! When she’s not in her classroom, you can find Kelsey and Mr. Chris throughout Tampa Bay, performing at local establishments like Backwaters on Sand Key, Caddy’s Indian Shores, The Living Room, and more! Follow them on instagram @chrisandkelsfl!
What She Likes About Teaching Music: “When a student comes in my classroom, I want them to know that they are allowed to be there absolute self. I look for authenticity and individuality in my student’s character and heart. I love being able to set a safe space for creativity, musical journeys, and genuine human connect. Music is its own language and there is never a dull moment. You are always learning something new; whether it’s about the music you are making or your own personal a-ha moment.”
Instrument: Guitar, Bass, & Ukulele, Rock Band Class, Parent Guitar Class
Background: Chris started playing guitar when he was 14 years old. He studied blues and rock guitar at the Academia Lizard in Fontanetto Po, Italy. He then traveled to America, started playing with local Floridian bands and eventually started his own solo act! Throughout his journey, he learned how to sing play basic Bass and basic drum beats so he could improve his songwriting. He now plays guitar and sings professionally every weekend in the Tampa Bay area! He has released 2 original songs available online, many more to come! His goal is to help students achieve their guitar and songwriting goals the fastest and easiest way possible.
What he likes about teaching music: “I love teaching music because I want to share the light that music brought into my life. Because of my passion, I am always in search of new and innovative ways to teach guitar to make the process of learning easier, faster and more fun!”
Instruments: Oboe, Piano, Ukulele
Background: Ms. Becky holds a bachelor’s degree in Oboe Performance from the University of South Florida and a master’s degree in Music Theory from Florida State University. She is an active member of the international music fraternity Sigma Alpha Iota, which provides many opportunities for volunteering to support music educators and students in Tampa. Since graduating from USF, she has been on a quest to broaden her musical horizons as much as possible by picking up the ukulele, dabbling in singing from Renaissance notation, and finding an unexpected enjoyment of opera while living in New York City. She is also a visual artist and enjoys the challenge of combining her visual and musical abilities in a variety of creative projects. When she is not making or teaching music, she enjoys all things superheroes and playing with her puppies.
What she likes about teaching music: “I love watching music help kids grow by gaining confidence, emotional intelligence, improving motor skills, and so much more. The most exciting moments in teaching come from recognizing my students’ growth, discovering new music together, and sharing what I am most passionate about with them.”
Instruments: Oboe, Sax, Piano, Strings, Voice, Drums, Music Technology Lab Instructor
Background: As a flrodia native, Ms. Skye has performed with various ensembles in Florida, including those in Leon, Manatee, Miami-Dade, Sarasota, and Hillsoborugh counties. She has studied music education at the University of Tampa where she plays principal oboe for UT’s wind ensemble, principal oboist and English horn for the UT Symphony Orchestra, principal violist in UT’s chamber orchestra, and sang alto in UT’s treble choir, Camerata. Mrs. Skye has taught elementary through high school students with Taylor Robinson Music Lessons since 2020 and in her spare time, she enjoys composing, hiking, and baking.
Background: Peter has been playing the drums for over 15 years. Peter has volunteered in church bands and can play various styles of music including: Gospel, Christian and Contemporary Christian music. He currently has his own band and has recorded music in a studio several times. Peter is also proficient in other styles of music, including: Classic Rock, Blues, Swing, Folk, Country, Doo-Wop and Gospel.
What he likes about teaching music: “I like to share with other people what I’m passionate about. I am so obsessed with drumming, that I can’t stop talking about it (no matter how much people beg me). Teaching others how to drum gives me the chance to share what I love, and to have a huge impact on another’s life, just as my drum teachers had with me.”
Instruments: Cello, Piano, Violin
Background: Brittnay earned a BM degree in Music Performance from the University of South Florida in Tampa under the tutelage of Scott Kluksdahl. Upon graduating, she received accolades in academic excellence and music history. Brittnay has held several leadership positions in the Pinellas Youth Symphony where she was principal cellist of both the Symphony and Serenade Orchestras and a member of the distinguished Senior String Quartet. Brittnay also had the opportunity to perform in a side-by-side concert with the Florida Orchestra and go on tour with the Pinellas Youth Symphony throughout Italy, German, and Austria. With her Senior String Quartet, she has performed at numerous venues for Mayors, aquariums, weddings, and art galas. She has attended chamber music workshops at the University of Tampa, Florida State University, and Apple Hill Music Festival. Her other primary teachers include: Lowell Adams (Assistant Principal of the Florida Orchestra), Joan Lunde, Helga Winold (Indiana University), and Rebecca Patterson (Principal of the New Haven Symphony Orchestra). Brittnay has been teaching students of all ages and levels how to enjoy playing music with a creative outlook that caters uniquely to each student’s goals and desires since 2009.
What she likes about teaching: “Music is such an expressive art. Once you build the groundwork of a piece with a solid technical understanding, music can be anything you want it to be! The best kind of fun that comes from music is the story that you tell when you play and how much fun you have doing it! I love seeing that moment of pure joy in the eyes of my students and that’s what I strive for most as a teacher.”
Instruments: Voice and Piano
Background: Katherine is a recent graduate from the University of Tampa with a Bachelor’s of Music in Voice Performance. She has participated in a variety of music festivals and competitions, such as ACDA, Symposium, and TBNATS. She has an acute interest in studio recording work, and likes to write original songs in her free time. She loves working with classical and pop music, and her favorite Disney movie is Tangled!
Why she loves Teaching: There is nothing more rewarding than experiencing a shared passion for music with another person. My goal is to encourage that interest in music and allow it to blossom into something that lasts a lifetime. The vocal instructors I’ve had over the years have all helped me in incredible and unique ways, and that admiration for their teaching gave me a desire to share what I’ve learned with other students. Whether it is a casual endeavor or a lifelong dream, I adore being able to help students become more confident In their musical abilities. And, more importantly, to have fun!
Instruments: Violin, Viola and Piano
Background: Mr. Sebastian started to studying music when he was 5 years old in the National Network of Youth and Children Orquestras of Venezuela, “El Sistema”, Venezuela. At an early age he began to love the violin and was member of the violin master classes of Rubén Carrillo. Also he studied piano in the “Federico Villena” music school, and continued his music studies in the Simón Bolívar Conservatory, Caracas, Venezuela. For many years was a Member of the first violin row of Maracay Children’s Symphonic Orquestra, Maracay Youth Symphonic Orquestra and Antonio Vivaldi Orquestra. Despite having trained in a classical musical environment, he was the founder, director and arranger of the Pop/Rock Band Mizing One, expanding and mixing different musical genres using classical instruments.
Why he loves teaching: I like to demonstrate my passion for music through teaching. Our students are the reflection of ourselves and it is gratifying to see the growth of each one of them day by day. Discipline and dedication does not take away the fun of music, have fun!
Mr. Juan Carlos
Instruments: Guitar, Piano
Background: Juan Morales is currently a music education major at The University of Tampa. Mr. Juan Carlos has performed for many events, including: The Latin America Fiesta Association, UT Honors Recital, and HCC Performer of the Semester. Mr. Morales has also received recognition for his musicianship, such as the HCC Guitar Series Scholarship, and the UT Dpeartment of Music award for “outstanding musicianship, performance, and academic achievement”. Mr. Morals used to be a professional video game player for a game called VainGlory, as well as the card game Yu-Gi-Oh.
Ms. Kelsey Thornton (Ms. K)
Instruments: Voice, Piano
Background: Ms. K is currently a Music Education major at the University of Tampa. Ms. K is a part of the UT Chamber Choir and Camerata, led by Dr. Ryan Hebert. Ms. K also studies voice under the tutelage of Dr. Hein Jung. Ms. K has been in productions of Oklahoma!, The Secret Garden, and A Christmas Carol.
Why she loves teaching music: I love teaching because I have always had a passion for music and I would love to share that passion with others. Music has a wonderful way of bringing people from all walks of life together, and that is something that we can share and learn about It is a wonderful tool that many people can use n their day-to-day lives, even if they do not pursue music as a career. There are many things to enjoy and appreciate about music, and I am more than happy to teach my students all about it.
Instruments: Voice, Piano
Background: I grew up singing in choir and performing in community theater productions. My love of music lead me to pursue a degree in Musical Theatre Performance. I received my BFA from the University of Tampa in 2021. Since then, I have been teaching music and drama for toddlers-8th grade at Country Day School. I love singing, sight reading, playing piano, and music theory!
Why do you love teaching?: I love sharing my passion for music with my students. It is my belief that musical experience helps shape a well-rounded child. Teaching is a very rewarding experience that I hope to continue for years to come.
Background: Having studied music overseas for 10+ years, Mr. Luke has an in-depth understanding, and passion, for music. Having started with drum-kit and gradually extending out into a more diverse array of instruments eventually finding a particular love of piano and woodwinds. Mr. Luke spent his middle school, high school, and college years performing in the very best ensembles his schools had to offer and regularly traveling internationally to perform with a variety of honor bands in Seoul, Tokyo, Venice, and Hamburg. While in college, Mr. Luke graduated from Wheaton College with a degree focused on Surgical/Veterinarian Health Sciences in addition to the in depth study of Music and Music History. He has played alongside prominent members of the U.S Marine Corps and Air Force band in addition to performing in jazz clubs with his college ensembles. Outside of music, Mr. Luke loves to travel and having lived in Japan, Germany, and England his whole life he has had the opportunity to visit a variety of countries where he collects instruments from around the world. Why do you love teaching? I absolutely love music! Music is something I could discuss for hours without ever getting tired, but most importantly I love sharing that love of music with others. Being able to help students learn both the intricacies of music while also having fun with the process was integral to my development as a young musician. Having the opportunity to inspire the next generations of musicians is so special and being able to walk alongside them is even more important
Instruments: Piano and Guitar
Background: Jim is classically trained and he has a Bachelor’s of Arts in Music from The Edinboro State University in Edinboro, PA. Jim has been performing the piano for over 45 years and he has been teaching for 30 years. Jim started playing music when he was just 6 years old. Jim teaches to young children as early as 6 years old to adults in all levels, and all genres of music including Classical, Rock, Pop, Jazz, Christian and more. He has performed in Top 40 Rock Bands in New England to Jazz Bands in Tampa. He continues to perform with countless bands on keyboard, guitar and drums. He is also a member of his local church where he continues to perform. Jim is an avid musician and fluent in electronics, MIDI, recording and he even built his own recording studio. Between his many favorite bands, he enjoys Suzanne Ciani and most of New Age Style Piano, like Yanni.
What he likes about teaching: “I love the interaction between the teacher and the student. Teaching music is special because and it means a lot to me especially when the student “gets it” for the first time.”