Music Instructors

E-mail us at learn@musicacademyva.com

Call us at 703-542-7918


Alan Aranas – strings, piano, composition

Stoneridge & Sterling Locations

Alan Aranas began studying music formally when he was at the young age of five years old. During his high school years he has studied privately under the tutelage of Mr. Xian Lin of the Virginia Symphony. Alan has earned a Bachelors degree from Virginia Commonwealth University studying under the wing of the late Dr. Dika Newlin, who was a direct pupil of the famous contemporary composer, Arnold Schoenberg. Notable piano teachers throughout his life have been Ms. Hermie Serna (Serna Music), Ms. Laura Soles (Governor’s School), Ms. Jeanette Windsor (Governor’s School), Mr. Russell Wilson (Richmond Symphony) and Mr. Landon Biyleau (Virginia Commonwealth University). Alan’s violin and viola instructors/coaches during his undergraduate career were Dr. Robert Murray and Honggang Li (Shanghai Quartet). Alan has earned a Masters Degree at New York University studying with Dr. Justin Dello Joio, Dr. Dinu Ghezzo, and Dr. Deniz Hughes to broaden his skills in film music composition. Alan Aranas freelances with various chamber music groups, and is a rising multimedia composer/ producer/ music artist under NonStop Access Management (VA).

Website: Alan Aranas’ Website


Sebastian Valenzuela – composition, guitar (all styles)

SKYPE Lessons

Sebastian is a multifaceted composer, computer programmer, performer, and educator. His passion for jazz and classical guitar led him to get his Bachelors Degree in Jazz Studies at Loyola University in New Orleans, where he studied with such well-established guitarists as Brian Seeger, Todd Duke, and John Rankin. During this time he also started writing his first serious works as a young composer under the tutelage of James Walsh (Columbia U.) and Paul Botelho (Dartmouth, Princeton). A lesson with Jon Appleton (Dartmouth Digital Musics, founder) convinced him to further his education in the field of Music Composition and Technology at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where he received his masters degree and founded the new music collective MOSAIC (Milwaukee Organized Sound and Instrument Collective). While in Milwaukee, his teachers Amanda Schoofs (Mills), Christopher Burns (Stanford), and Kevin Schlei (UWM) taught him to embrace the latest concepts in contemporary music and technology.As a teacher, Sebastian has experience teaching private instrument and composition lessons, and has directed ensembles and classes in composition through the Music Academy of Virginia. As a composer, he’s had his worked premiered by Ensemble Dal Niente, the Spektral Quartet and was recently accepted to premiere a work and study in the 2013 highScore Music Festival, a prestigious institution for new music held annually in Pavia, Italy.

For the latest information on Sebastian (including events and media) please visit his website at www.svalenzuelamusic.wix.com/home

sebastian-headshot

Brian Verdi – string ensembles

Brian Verdi teaches middle school strings at Herbert Hoover Middle School and directs the John P. Stevens High School Orchestras in Edison, New Jersey. He also conducts the Concert Orchestra of the Greater Princeton Youth Orchestra. He has experience in teaching all grade levels from elementary through high school. He has a private studio where he teaches violin and viola to students as young as four years old and consistently places student in regions. Brian is part owner and director of the East Coast Summer Strings, LLC located in New Jersey and Virginia. He completed a two-year Suzuki Method certification program from the School for Strings in NYC under the guidance of Louise Behrend. Mr. Verdi is certified in Suzuki levels 1 – 12. His expertise extends to repairing and building hand-made/crafted violins.
Degrees & Certifications: M.Ed. in Music Education, Teachers College, Columbia University, NJ Supervisors Certificate, Teachers College, Columbia University, M.A. in Music Education, New York University, B.A. in Music Education, Montclair State University, Suzuki Violin Method Certification, School for Strings

Jason J. Labrador

Jason J. Labrador is originally from Va. Beach, Virginia. Jason is a graduate of the Virginia Governor’s School for the Arts in Norfolk, VA and finished his studies at Shenandoah University (BA Arts Studies ’01 with a voice/violin concentration.

Jason has performed either in the orchestra or on stage for over 50 musicals to date. Some of his past theater credits include The Robber Bridegroom (Harp Family Band), Fiddler on the Roof! (Fiddler), I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change (Violin) PA/VA, Ring of Fire (Seth) PA/FL/AZ, Lost Highway (Loudmouth Leon), Glory Bea! A Shenandoah Christmas Story (Zeke) and Aida (Nubian), Man of La Mancha (Juan/The Moor) and Road Show (Mr. Phipps/Winthrop Tippet/Ensemble).

He has also been music director and actor for several community theater shows with the Middleburg Players in Middleburg, VA. Jason has also been involved with the Shenandoah Summer Music Theater as concertmaster, orchestra manager or actor since 1996. Jason is a member the Musicians of Mercy, (www.musiciansofmercy.org) the Two Rivers Chamber Orchestra (WV) (www.sufom.org/tworivers.html), and is the Associate Concertmaster of the Piedmont Symphony. Jason has performed with the bluegrass band “Nothin’ Fancy” at the 10th Anniversary Nothin’ Fancy Bluegrass Festival in Buena Vista, VA. (www.nothinfancybluegrass.com) Jason has also performed in the orchestra and as a soloist with the Mercersburg Community Choir (www.mercersburgchorus.org) of Mercersburg, PA. Jason has also been a soloist with the Loudoun Symphony in northern Virginia and was a member for 8 years. Jason has been a soloist with the Arts Chorale of Winchester www.artschoralewinchester.org under the direction of Michael Main.

Jason is also a member of the chancel choir at Trinity Episcopal Church (www.trinityupperville.org) in Upperville, VA where he has been serving as section leader for the choir since 1998. Jason has also performed with the Kim Reynolds Quartet and the Manassas Ballet Theatre (www.manassasballet.org) in their production of “Dracula” with original music by Kim Reynolds. Jason has also performed at Signature Theatre in Arlington, VA with “A Matt Conner Christmas” and in Stephen Sondheim’s “Road Show” as an ensemble member.

Jason has performed as a “Guest Artist” at the John F. Kennedy Center with Jason and the Scorchers in the world premiere performance of “Far Behind” by the Bowen-McCauley Dance Company (www.bmdc.org).

Jason is one of the announcers for the Winchester Storm (www.winchesterstorm.com) and frequently sings the National Anthem at the home games.

Jason has also played for high profile wedding clients such as Sandy Lerner, Dr. Sheila Johnson, the daughter of General David Petraeus and Senator Jill Vogel.

Jason also had the honor of playing at the 2017 Bi-Partisan Inaugural Ball for the current president with Andy Kushner Entertainment and Design.

Jason has also had the privilege of performing on stage with Aiden Turner, O.A.R., Deana Martin, Jon Anderson (former lead singer of Yes!), Richard Smallwood, Jackie Evancho and many others!