Private Lessons

How to get a head start on band at Johnson

We strongly encourage our band members to take private lessons on their instrument, as this is a great way to set and achieve measurable goals with a Professional Musician or Specialist on a specific instrument.  

Each instrument has special needs, tendencies, and we partner with some of the finest trained professionals in their fields.  There is no substitute for taking lessons with an individual who performers or specializes on a specific instrument, and we work to find the best fit for each of our band members. 


Many think that “private lessons” or “tutoring” are only needed for kids who are struggling with their instrument … while it is great for “extra help” as it suggests, those students who are excelling on their instruments benefit equally and usually excel to a whole new level of performance. 

It is virtually impossible to achieve success in the TMEA All-State Process without coaching from a private lesson instructor .

Even if your band member will not pursue music as a career, taking lessons teaches responsibility, goal setting, and commitment to a craft or process.  The art of learning to commit and work towards excellence applies far beyond learning to play an instrument.


How do I know who to take lessons from? There are so many teachers advertising!

Although there are many instructors in the San Antonio area, the list below represents a collection of individuals who we have worked with in the past and have proven extremely knowledgeable and trustworthy. 

They are masters at their craft, and trusted by our staff to further your band member's love for music and achieve success at TMEA and All State Auditions. If you do not currently study with one of our recommended instructors, we highly encourage you to explore taking a sample lesson with them to see what you think!

Please contact Mr. Lipman at  for the contact information for each of our instructors.

Our recommended instruction team includes


Bev Frittelli - Primary Campus Instructor
Emily Gurwitz - Band Director, Bradley Middle School
Jean Gnecco
Kay Southerland

Mark Ackerman - Retired, San Antonio Symphony
Zach Boeding - Oboeist, San Antonio Symphony

Clarinet & Bass Clarinet
Philip May
Ruben Escamilla
Sara Stolt
Melissa Wight

Mark Rogers
Sharon Kuster   - Principal Bassoon, San Antonio Symphony
Meredith Wright

Keith Witt
Scott MacDonald 
Josh Bryant

Robert Zider
Mark Koehl 
Forrest Spengler
Mike Palermo

French Horn
Marc Lumley
Carrie Strickland

Trombone & Bass Trombone
Joe Dixon - Primary Trombone Instructor


Jarrett Lipman 
Conrad Isenhour
Euphonium & Tuba
Jason Buckingham
Michael Woods 
Conrad Isenhour

Jordan Stern
Courtney Kirkwood
Kris Hartman
Sarah Gartin
Manny Maldonado