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440 Main Street - Middletown CT 06457
(860) 344-0525

Piano Lessons

Zoe Vandermeer

Zoe Vandermeer (www.zoevandermeer.net) is a prize-winning graduate of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. She is dedicated to providing high quality training for singers, pianists, and harpists, children, adults, beginner to advanced levels, for all styles of music. Areas of specialization include vocal training for kids and aspiring artists (musical theatre, pop/rock and classical), voice for actors, voice for speakers, beginning to intermediate piano, music theory and songwriting. She has been an adjudicator for CT Regionals, and many of her students have had lead roles in shows, film, tv, and have sung with Regionals, All State, Nationals. As a composer, she encourages interested students to develop their creativity in music and the Arts. An advocate for healthy vocal techniques, she has worked in tandem with medical professionals with clients suffering from vocal trauma including various types of dysphonia, stroke, and other medical issues.

A dramatic coloratura soprano, Baroque and Celtic harpist, pianist, singer-songwriter, and composer, Ms. Vandermeer performs nationally and internationally. Her two solo soprano/Welsh triple harp albums will be released in 2020 by a well-known American label. Named to the Roster of the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism in 2011, Ms. Vandermeer enjoyed her Carnegie Hall Debut in 2014 as First Place Winner of the B. Alexander International Vocal Competition. She has been a Recipient of the Hartt School Faculty Development Fund, Dame Joan Sutherland Fund, Music Teachers National Association, Emerging Artists Fund, RSAMD Trust Scholarship, and Musicians Foundation. She was a Finalist in the London Young Artists Early Music Competition, Wilfred Laurier Concert Aria Competition Canada, American Prize Competition, and as a composer won First Place in the Dunfermline Cathedral Scotland Hymn Writing Competition, RSAMD Composition Prize, and received a commission by the Contra Costa Chamber Orchestra for her work ‘The Enchanted Nightingale’. Ms. Vandermeer’s original story/music/show ‘Zoe’s Musical Fairy Tale’, has been frequently compared to Phantom of the Opera, Into the Woods, Secret Garden, Narnia, and Harry Potter. She was the author, composer, director and performer in her original show ‘If Love Be the Food of Musick’ which she toured in Europe and the US.

Ms. Vandermeer has been music director for the Rhinebeck Performing Arts Center, TheatreWorks Kids, Children’s Acting Academy, Alameda Children’s Musical Theatre, Dublin Children’s Theatre, Nova Youth Choir, St. Johns Episcopal Choirs, First Church Bethel Choir, Lyra New York Baroque Opera, and others. Ms. Vandermeer is the founder and artistic director of the Lyra New York International Vocal Competition (www.lyranewyork.com).

Kevin Xiao

Kevin Xiao was born in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and moved with his family to Connecticut in 1999. Kevin graduated from South Windsor High School and the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts in 2013. He received his Bachelor of Music Degree in 2017, and his Master of Music Degree in 2019, from the Hartt School of Music, University of Hartford. Kevin has played the piano for 18 years. He won the CSMTA Audrey Thayer Competition in 2012 and 2013, and won second place in the American Protégé International Music Competition of Romantic Music in 2018. Kevin has been a solo pianist, concert pianist, collaborative pianist, and a piano and organ accompanist. Prior to joining the Middlesex Music Academy, Kevin has been teaching piano privately in the South Windsor and Hartford area.

Kevin Wyman

Kevin Wyman is a classically-trained pianist, born in Connecticut. Kevin began playing music at an early age, and earned his Bachelor's of Music from the University of Massachusetts. He spent his time there exploring a number of disciplines, including jazz training with world-class musicians such as Walter Platt and Charles Gabriel. Kevin is further developing his classical training, while working closely with the Wesleyan piano faculty.

Kevin lives in Middletown, CT, and is constantly working to better himself as a musician and an educator. He has been teaching privately for almost ten years, and has seen students of all ages develop a love of music. Kevin teaches piano with a traditional focus on sight-reading & music theory, with a modern approach to posture and coordination. Kevin is always striving to incorporate modern music into his teaching method, and welcomes students suggesting their own favorite pieces to work on together.

Ishaar Gupta

Ishaar Gupta, bass-baritone, graduated from the University of Connecticut in May of 2016, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in music, emphasis in vocal performance. At UConn, Ish studied private voice with Metropolitan Opera bass-baritone Rod Nelman, and sang in several choirs directed by Dr. Jamie Spillane. He currently sings professionally in various ensembles, including CONCORA, the South Church Chancel Choir, the Hartford Chorale, and Novi Cantori. In the past, he has sung with Connecticut Chamber Choir, Farmington Valley Chorale, CDN, and the Composer’s Choir. A diverse performer, Ish has sung and acted in several musicals, plays, operas, most recently with Madison Lyric Stage and Pearwater Productions. In addition to performing and writing his own music, Ish is currently pursuing a career as an educator as part of Hartford Stage’s education department, which brings innovative theatre education to more than 17,000 students each year. A native of Newtown, Connecticut, and a proud UConn Husky, Ish is excited to be a part of such a great program at Middlesex Music Academy!

Emily McDermott

Emily McDermott has been studying piano since 1995, and voice since 2004. She earned her Bachelors of Fine Arts in Musical Theatre from Oakland University in Rochester Hills, MI. Her love for music and performance has taken her on an incredible journey. Starting in Metro Detroit where she grew up and got her education, taking her to N.Y.C and Off Broadway, on to Westchester NY where she created and ran her own music department at a K-8 grammar school and taught piano/voice/acting at the Bennett Academy of Performing Arts, and finally landing her in Middletown CT with her husband and two children where she teaches privately as well as directs a choir and sings professionally on weekends. While she was in college Emily studied many different performance genres. She is well versed in anything from classical to contemporary (Opera, Classical, Jazz, Blues, Rock n Roll…etc.) In her lessons she offers focus on sight-reading, improvisation, performance, theory and composition. Her goal as a teacher is to introduce and familiarize every student with the foundations in each musical subset or category to set them up for success in pursuing music they connect with. Music is such a powerful influence on our lives, Emily makes it a priority to guide her students and help them forge their own path to create a long lasting relationship with their music and instruments while at the same time providing them with a strong foundation and musical background.

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Store Hours

Monday: 12:00pm - 8:00pm
Tuesday: 12:00pm - 8:00pm
Wednesday: 12:00pm - 8:00pm
Thursday: 12:00pm - 8:00pm
Friday: 12:00pm - 8:00pm
Saturday: 10:00am - 6:00pm
Sunday: Closed
About Us!

Your place for music lessons and supplies in Middletown. Middlesex Music Academy is a non-corporate locally own business. As a member of the Middlesex Chamber of Commerce we strive to support local businesses and build the community as a whole.