Owner, Music Director
Dave's passion for music and performing developed at a very early age. His musical journey began in grade school when he joined both concert and marching band. He continued in both performance groups throughout grade school and college at Western Illinois University. Dave bought his first drum kit at age 12 and his passion for rock music grew. This journey then grew as Dave and his best friend and School of Rock coworker Adam Instefjord started a band that specialized in 90s punk rock covers. Dave and Adam also write, produce and record their own original music and continue to release albums. Currently Dave is playing with multiple Chicago-land area bands. He is a founding member of the Chicago punk rock trio The Mizzerables, who have released their third album "Whatever... This Sucks." One of the projects that takes up most of Dave’s time is The Student Body, a high-energy rock cover band that specializes in party rock anthems. You can catch The Student Body at festivals, casinos, weddings, corporate events and more. Dave currently teaches drum lessons at School of Rock Oak Park and is the Music Director for School of Rock Glenbrook.
Erica grew up in Michigan and her passion for music began at a young age when her mom and two older sisters were constantly playing classic and 80’s rock records in their home. This eventually led to an obsession with MTV and music videos as a kid and then attending tons of rock shows and festivals as a teen and adult. After graduating from Western Michigan University with a Bachelor’s degree, she started her career in Project Management and Technology Sales, working her way up through several global IT organizations. Then in 2014, Erica was introduced to School of Rock when her now fiancé, Dave, who is also the Music Director in Glenbrook, invited her to attend a School of Rock performance that he directed in Oak Park.
Ever since then, she has been inspired by the extraordinary talent and continued growth of the kids, and has wanted to be part of the sense of belonging and community that School of Rock brings to everyone involved. Erica was lucky enough to have the opportunity to make a career change and recently joined the School of Rock family as the General Manager of Glenbrook. She is so excited to be surrounded by music everyday and to potentially make a difference in the lives of young musicians! Outside of work, Erica enjoys traveling the globe, hiking, gardening, hanging out with her French Bulldog Silvio Dante, true crime books and podcasts, and of course, going to as many rock shows as possible!
Assistant Music Director
Nick grew up in the west suburbs of Chicago, and started his life in music by picking up a bass guitar at age 15. Influenced by bands like Rush, The Who, Tool and Soundgarden, he became immersed in every element of the musical process, from songwriting to music production and beyond.
After earning his Bachelor's of Music from Columbia College Chicago in 2013, he spent four years with the Nick Moss Band, an internationally known blues/rock band. Pulling on experience gained from years of touring the continental United States, northern Europe and beyond, he works with his students to fully enrich their musical lives, as well as make them better players.
Owner, Regional Director
Adam is a multi-instrumentalist and songwriter from the Northwest suburbs of Chicago. He first picked up a guitar at the age of 12, immediately started his first band in the eighth grade and has been performing both locally and nationally ever since. Over the years he has decided to expand his musical prowess and learned how to sing, play bass guitar and drums. Another concentration that Adam has pursued is audio recording and production. He chose to continue his education at The Recording Workshop in Chillicothe, OH, where he received certification in Audio Recording and Production.
Adam currently plays in multiple bands, including playing bass and singing in Chicago-based cover-band The Student Body. Adam started his career at School of Rock Oak Park in 2013. He started his tenure as an instructor, was promoted to Music Director and is now the Regional Director of both School of Rock Oak Park and School of Rock Glenbrook. During his years with us, he has taught guitar, bass guitar and production, directed countless shows, taught Rock 101 and Rock 201, and taught Project Studio and Oak Park’s House Band.
Amy is a former corporate marketer and the owner of School of Rock Oak Park and School of Rock Glenbrook. Starting at an early age, Amy recognized a tension between art and business. It began when her doctor dad left his medical practice to pursue a career in art and her stay-at-home mom went off to law school and started her own successful career. As a result, Amy has spent most of her work life blending the two sides, building her career in sales and marketing at Blue Cross and Blue Shield and, at the same time, pursuing artistic interests. While she developed her business skills in web marketing, sales strategy and technology adoption, she also hosted art shows, crafted and sold jewelry in local boutiques and galleries, and generally sought opportunities that would enable her to marry her business skills with her love of art. When her daughter, at the time only 12 years old, attended summer camp at School of Rock Chicago, Amy suggested that they should consider opening a school in Oak Park. Amy learned that School of Rock was a franchise opportunity and a light bulb went off. She knew that she would be the person to make it happen. In early December 2012, Amy and her ever-supportive husband, Bob, converted a 50-year-old combination warehouse and office building into the vibrant home of School of Rock Oak Park. After having built the largest School of Rock in the world in Oak Park, she is setting her sights on bringing the same magic, energy, and passion to the communities of Northbrook and Glenview with School of Rock Glenbrook.
Chris is a drummer/percussionist based in Chicago. He holds a degree in Music Education from Western Illinois University and teaches percussion ensemble, marching drumline, and private lessons at various schools throughout the Chicagoland area.
In addition to his teaching, Chris keeps a busy performance and recording schedule. He can regularly be seen performing with groups ranging in styles from jazz, country, singer-songwriter, indie pop, punk, metal, hard rock, and classical.
Christina is so excited to be joining the School of Rock Family. She grew up on 70s classics, R&B, gained an appreciation for classical music through her grandparents, and was a teenager in the 80’s, which says it all right there. From the coffee table “stage” with a hairbrush mic, where she sang to the imagined packed arena, to the stage with live humans, Christina took every chance she could to sing in choirs, as the lead in her high school musical, and was classically trained through high school. That training served her well and, meshed with her rock voice, created a National Anthem range. She has sung at major and minor league, and local games. Her classical voice also found her singing in the church choir for 10 years, and currently serves her as a sound healer.
Christina teaches yoga and has come to discover how breathing techniques and physical poses contribute to an increased breath capacity overall, improving performance.
Over the last 20 years she has performed in small local bands. Her own influences include the power houses of Janis Joplin, Susan Tedeschi, Linda Ronstadt, and Joanna Cotten. Current projects include The Island of Misfit Toys and her newest project, Christina Michelle & the Badass Muthas, both with friends in the Grad School program. She has also recently begun learning guitar. Music is where she is meant to be. It is Home. Christina has discovered how to become one with the music, because it lives in her soul.
Colin is a Chicago-based percussionist and drummer who actively performs in a multitude of contemporary and classical music settings. He began his musical journey at age 10 by joining the band program at school. As he got older, he played in various punk, rock, and indie bands throughout high school and eventually decided to pursue music as a career. Colin went on to receive a Bachelor of Music degree in Commercial Music from Millikin University (2012) and a Master of Music degree in Percussion Performance and Literature from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (2015). He can most regularly be seen playing with The Phantom Broadcast, an experimental rock outfit that pushes the boundaries of indie, post-rock, classical, and jazz, and can be heard on their latest full-length album Antiquities. He can also be found playing drums for the Chicago pop-rock band King Mixer.
Colin also enjoys teaching young musicians of all ages throughout the Chicagoland area. Aside from his work with School of Rock, he serves as a percussion teaching artist with the Chicago Arts and Music Project and with Sistema Ravinia in Waukegan. He also teaches privately and instructs marching percussion at a handful of public schools, most notably John Hersey High School, Buffalo Grove High School, Elk Grove High School, Glenbrook North High School, and Homer Jr. High. Colin believes that learning music can be fun, inspiring, and lead to growth in all aspects of life and hopes to share his passion with all of his students.
Kyle was captivated by music at a very young age, listening for hours with his father to the artists of XRT. Inspired by the rock ‘n roll of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, he picked up a guitar and took lessons throughout his childhood. In high school, it was the attitude and rebellious nature of pop punk bands like blink-182 that led him to form a band with his friends and begin performing music for others. Being a quiet natured kid from the suburbs, the stage allowed him a platform of self expression unlike any other. He pursued this creative outlet in college, earning a degree in Music Performance from Columbia College Chicago. It was here that he first heard The Beatles’ Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, forever expanding his conceptions of music and songwriting. Since then, music has continued to be a central part of Kyle’s life, whether it was repairing and building stringed instruments, or performing the sounds of funk, soul and Motown with the Chicago based Second Hand Soul Band. Now a guitar and bass instructor at School of Rock, he is excited to share his lifelong passion with others.
Vocal Teacher, Keyboard + Piano Teacher
Michael has been studying music since he was 4 years old when he started piano lessons and first heard his parents' vinyl copy of "Pet Sounds." While being trained in classical piano, Michael eventually found himself drawn to Billy Joel, Ben Folds, and rock operas. He studied music, theatre, and voice at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan before moving to Chicago with his indie pop/piano rock band Common Shiner.
In his 12-year tenure with that project, Michael charted nationally in the AC format (thanks to major support from Midwestern radio stations), toured the continental U.S., and made a slasher movie parody music video that went viral across the globe with over 12 million views. Michael has also voiced radio commercials and characters nationally and won a Kennedy Center Special Award for Theatrical Sound Design in 2006. Current endeavors include Otter Finn, Foster, Front Runners, and solo projects.
Charley is an active percussionist, drummer, and educator in the Chicagoland area. He currently performs as a percussionist with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and spent the 2019-21 seasons playing with The Orchestra Now (TON) in New York. He’s performed in prestigious venues across the country including Carnegie Hall, Jordan Hall, Boston Symphony Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Chicago Symphony's Orchestra Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Charley comes from a family of musicians and started studying music at the age of 5, and started on drums at age 8. He went on to study major in music, graduating from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY with a Bachelor of Music degree in 2017 and from the New England Conservatory in Boston, MA with a Master of Music degree in 2019. As an educator, Charley believes in creating a fun, safe, and creative environment for all students to learn how to use two pieces of wood to express their musical voices. Charley is a drum teacher at School of Rock Glenbrook in Northbrook, IL.
Bryan has been playing the guitar since 2004 and specializes in genres ranging from rock & roll, country, western, funk, and jazz. His musical heroes include Derek Trucks, Trey Anastasio, and Jack Johnson for their abilities not only as guitar players and songwriters but also for their positive influences on the communities surrounding them.
Bryan followed his passion for music into adulthood by majoring in Contemporary, Urban & Popular Music at Columbia College Chicago, a track that covers music industry facets like theory, performance, business, and writing and production. Bryan has performed with several bands and has real-world experience touring around the country with these groups, as well as teaching group and private lessons.
As an instructor, he believes anybody with enthusiasm, patience, and a willingness to practice can become a great musician. Bryan is currently returning to school, seeking a degree in Psychology. He hopes it will help him understand how our creative minds understand and learn music and other art forms. Bryan is an advanced guitar teacher at School of Rock in Northbrook, IL.
Keyboard + Piano Teacher
Alex has been playing music since the age of 9, starting with piano lessons for three years before taking up the saxophone. He took every chance he could to play music with others, which gave him experience playing many different styles of music. While studying both classical and jazz music, Alex also performed with a variety of bands ranging from funk to bluegrass, ska, blues, and more.
Alex graduated from Columbia College Chicago in 2014 with a B.A. in Music, where he worked with many renowned musicians, including Lee Konitz, Benny Golson, Kevin Eubanks, Gerald Clayton, and Barry Harris. Since then, he has gone on to release an album with The Giving Trio, featuring some of his own original compositions, as well as play and collaborate with various musicians around Chicago. Currently, Alex is the saxophonist for the soul and funk band The Heavy Sounds.
When he is not playing music, you can likely find Alex playing chess or other board games, or reading the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. Alex is an advanced keyboard teacher at School of Rock in Northbrook, IL!
Katie is a vocalist, guitarist, performer, and songwriter originally from Salinas, California. She studied jazz voice at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music before earning a BFA in Musical Theatre at Indiana University in 2023. She has performed as a vocalist at various venues and festivals such as the Monterey Jazz Festival and San Jose Jazz Festival.
Katie grew up in a musical household and began taking private lessons when she was 8 years old. Over the years she has played violin, guitar, clarinet, piano, and alto saxophone. Katie spent her time in college playing rhythm guitar and singing with various bands in Bloomington, IN. She has written for her former band, Middle Name Basis, and continues to write and perform her own solo work. Katie teaches voice lessons and Little Wing class at School of Rock in Northbrook, IL.
Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher
DJ used to listen to his dad play electric guitar and drums with his brother for years until eventually he asked his dad to teach him guitar. The first genres he learned were blues, rock, jazz, and pop. Emulation was the process by which he learned—if dad played it one way, that’s the way he played it, even if it was wrong.
As DJ got older and more serious, the opportunities came to play out at open mics with some seasoned professionals. Now he has become a sought-after "hired gun" to play in as many as five bands at once. Currently, DJ is the guitarist in Chicago’s most versatile rock cover band The Wise Guys, as well as in an original touring band from Libertyville called Sneezy. DJ teaches guitar and bass at School of Rock Glenbrook located in Northbrook, IL.
Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher, Studio Coordinator
Chris moved from West Virginia years ago to pursue a music career in Chicago. In that time, he has covered ground in many genres including rock, metal, traditional, folk, jazz, fusion, and electronic music. Having studied music composition at Columbia College Chicago for his first two and a half years in the city, Chris has studied with many of Chicago's finest musicians and has appeared with acts such as Can I Get an Amen string band and soul/pop singer Sarita Songbird.
Chris has diverse musical interests and a strong dedication to preserving music history while not allowing the past to inhibit the future. He has years of experience teaching guitar and bass and directing shows at School of Rock Oak Park and adds Studio Coordinator to his role at School of Rock Glenbrook in Northbrook, IL.
Joe is an accomplished professional drummer with a degree in music and over 25 years of music teaching experience. Joe has taught everything from private lessons, to grade school band, to coaching rock bands, to being a university professor of Music Business.
Joe’s fruitful career in Chicago, Los Angeles, and Europe has allowed him to perform, record, and tour with many renowned artists including David Ellefson (Megadeth), Frank Bello (Anthrax), Todd Kerns (SLASH), Martin Motnik (Accept, Uli Jon Roth), Kill Hannah (Atlantic Records), Michael Angelo Batio (Manowar, Nitro, Holland), South of Earth (feat. Geno Lenardo from Filter, Device, Chevelle), Cage9 (feat. members of Powerman 5000), and others.
Joe takes pride in being well-versed in a wide variety of styles, genres, and settings. His teaching methods are simple, efficient, and extremely effective. He understands every student learns differently, therefore, customizes his approach to the individual at hand to ensure he’s focusing on their specific needs.
Joe has been featured multiple times in Modern Drummer and Drum Magazine and is currently endorsed with Sonor Drums, Sabian Cymbals, Vater Sticks, Westone In-Ear Monitors, Gator Cases, and Martin Böhme Trumpets.
Joe is a drum instructor at School of Rock in Northbrook, IL.
Riley started singing when he was 12 years old in The Beauty And The Beast musical as Lefou. From there, he went to high school and quickly discovered a passion for jazz voice. In 2016 Riley took a chance and auditioned for NBC’s The Voice and ended up on the show soon after his 16th birthday. Riley lasted for four episodes and made it to the top 20 contestants on Adam Levine’s team. After his journey on The Voice, Riley started a career gigging around the Chicago area.
Riley studied at Depaul University and graduated in 2022 with a bachelor's degree in Performing Arts Management with a focus on Jazz Voice. Riley teaches voice and instructs the Rookies program at School of Rock Glenbrook.
Nick grew up in the Twin Cities and quickly became an active member of the area's youth music scene after picking up drums at the age of 11. He was admitted to Northwestern University in 2021 for Jazz Performance, where he quickly became involved in student bands in the area. In 2022, he made the switch to a Music Education major to pursue his love of teaching music to others. He is still pursuing this degree today, along with a degree in Political Science.
As someone who began learning drumset in a similar setting, Nick truly believes in the performance-based methods at School of Rock. He hopes to synthesize his formal music education training and his experience as a student, learner, performer, and human to create well-rounded musicians who can play and have fun with others! Nick teaches drums at the School of Rock in Northbrook, IL.