Mr. James Holland
Mr. James Holland
Ms Megan Holland
Ms Megan Holland
Originally from Albuquerque, Megan Holland began studying the violin at age four with Susan Kempter, nationally renowned pedagogue, author and Suzuki teacher trainer. She later studied privately with Leonard Felberg, former Professor of Violin at the University of New Mexico, concertmaster of the Santa Fe Symphony and violinist of the Seraphin Trio. She is an alumn of the Albuquerque Junior Symphony, the Albuquerque Youth Symphony and the New Mexico All-State Symphony Orchestra, serving as concertmaster for all three orchestras and performing as concerto soloist with the AYS. Megan holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Violin Performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music and a Master of Music degree in Violin Performance from the University of Southern California. She received her Suzuki training through all 10 books from Susan Kempter. Megan has performed throughout the United States, Mexico, Canada, Germany and the Netherlands. She plays regularly with Chatter, Albuquerque Chamber Soloists and various other ensembles around New Mexico. This is Megan’s fifth year at TMES.
Required Class Material List
- Nametag for the case
- Rosin (usually included with the violin)
- Shoulder rest or violin sponge (I recommend Kun or Viva. Robertsons carries blue sponges that can be used also. Make sure you get the correct size for your instrument.)
- Suzuki violin school volume 1, book and CD (the CD should be at the back of the book. Check to make sure! Also, both are available digitally from iTunes and Amazon, for those of you without a CD player.)
- Fingernail clippers (please take some time to teach your child how to safely clip their fingernails.)
- 3 ring binder (1 inch)
Students MUST bring their instrument and binder home after each violin day. Students are required to practice every night. We are also tight on space, so it is very important that nothing is left behind.
All students will have Strings twice a week.
Here is a description of the different classes:
Master Classes (all students)
Students will be pulled from their classrooms in groups of 5-8 students. During that time, students will receive individual attention from me. This is where I will assign new techniques and repertoire. Due to the volume of students, it is possible that each student may not get to play each week. In a Masterclass setting, the students learn from each other. While I encourage the students to do prescribed quiet activities during the time they are not playing, they are still in an immersive environment and therefore will still be learning essential skills. Students who don't get a chance to play one week will go first the next week.
Group Lessons (6-9 only)
During their Fine Arts rotation, two teachers' classes will be combined and then divided by grade. The students will rotate between Art, General Music and Strings. During the Strings rotation students will have Group Lesson. Students play in unison and in ensembles. They will explore rhythm, pitch and fundamentals of playing the violin in more detail. We will do coordination and sequencing activities.
TMES Orchestra (9-11 only)
On Fridays, each classroom will form an orchestra. For the first time, violas, violins and cellos will all get to play together! Students will practice reading music and ensemble skills in a friendly environment with Mr. James, who has been teaching the TMMS orchestra.
TMMS Orchestra (TMMS only)
TMMS students can choose one of three electives: Visual Art, General Music or Orchestra. Mr. James is the orchestra teacher.
Video Resources on YouTube
- Mountain Posture and Bow: https://youtu.be/WVOFd36MAvM
- Bow Hold: https://youtu.be/rkVdgCYg1jY
- Up Like a Rocket: https://youtu.be/kWDS_cXryho
- Pretwinkle and Twinkle Practice: https://youtu.be/zMGGNeP3Fb8
- Twinkle And Beyond: https://youtu.be/E4Fs0z9B6_Y
All students are required to practice every day. There will be no formal practice charts. When your child receives a new assignment, there will be a detailed practice routine on the assignment sheet. Please follow this plan. The assignment sheet will be kept in your child's notebook. Students must bring their instrument home after every violin day.
Mr. Nick Upton
Mr. Nick Upton
Nick Upton is an Albuquerque native and started cello in 4th grade. His musical experiences range from working with youth orchestras in Chihuahua, Mexico, and Scandinavia, to touring with Andrea Bocelli.
Before moving back home, Mr. Upton spent 16 years in Boston, MA, working extensively with the young musicians of New England. He coached three youth orchestras in the Preparatory Department at the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, MA where he received a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in cello performance, and served on the cello and chamber music faculty at the Winchester Music School in Winchester, MA.
Since moving back to Albuquerque nine years ago, Mr. Upton has immersed himself in the musical education of young minds as the cello teacher at The Montessori Elementary and Middle School, private studio teacher for the Upton Cello Studio, the former lead string teacher with the Young Musician Initiative (a program of the New Mexico Philharmonic that provides music education to elementary students of Title I schools here in Albuquerque), and conductor/director of the Albuquerque Youth Orchestra, a high school symphony orchestra with the Albuquerque Youth Symphony Program.
In June of 2019, he had the privilege of touring Sydney, Australia with members of the Albuquerque Youth Orchestra, one of the last ensembles to perform in the Sydney Opera House before it's closing for a 2-year renovation. He has performed with the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra, the Las Vegas Philharmonic, Lyrica Chamber Orchestra, the Boston New Music Initiative, the Santa Fe Symphony, and Opera Southwest, among others. He has concertized extensively in the U.S., as well as Mexico, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, and Australia.
Nick currently performs regularly with the New Mexico Philharmonic and NMGMC. This is his 9th year as the cello teacher at TMEMS and he couldn't be more excited for another great year!
Ms. Rebecca Gauna
Ms. Rebecca Gauna
My name is Rebecca Gauna and I am a K-8 classroom teacher as well as a visual arts teacher. I have three wonderful children, two of whom are newly enrolled at TMEMS in 2nd and 7th. I have taught art for over 12 years, but this will be my first time as just the art teacher and for an entire school. I am very excited and motivated to make this year a special one with collaborative STEAM and art integration projects for all interested grade levels.