Joined George School in 2008
“George School is a place where artistic individuality is respected and encouraged. Uniqueness in students is valued and genuinely enjoyed by faculty and the rest of the student body.”
Describe a teaching experience at George School that stands out in your mind.
In the spring, I had the Wind Ensemble play “Bolero,” by Maurice Ravel. This is a piece that builds slowly from beginning to end and really needs to sound chaotically bombastic in the last eight measures to make the “trip” worthwhile.
My students had a difficult time letting go. They were afraid to play too loudly, especially in the meetinghouse, which is a quiet, introspective place. When, after I begged and cajoled them to make a joyful noise, they finally let loose and felt the power of the piece—and the power they had inside them to make the piece come to life—I could see the magic and joy in their eyes. They knew that something special had happened and that they had created it. I believe they felt a new level of comradeship and identity.
I teach with an abundance of enthusiasm and humor. Music making should be a joyous, social event. It takes hard work, concentration, intense listening, and sometimes the stretching of individual limits. But it needs to be fun. Whether it’s Monday at 8:00 a.m. or Friday at 1:30 p.m., I demonstrate with my enthusiasm that every musical moment—note, measure, phrase, section—matters.
More about Steven:
Steven holds a BME from Temple University and an MM from the Manhattan School of Music. When he’s not teaching at George School, he is a full-time classical musician. He has worked with Pavarotti, Branford Marsalis, Don Rickles, Rita Moreno, and Cirque du Soleil; recorded film scores and music for the NFL, including for the Super Bowl; and performed around the world, including at Carnegie Hall, the Kimmel Center, the Academy of Music, and the Sydney Opera House.