This page and all of our pages are dedicated to our co-founder and teacher Mr. Matt, (1983-2016). He left a legacy of love and a passion for music education that we will carry on forever.
Founder and Director of Atlanta Music Education
Education Director of Capitol City Opera Company
Summer Camp Director and Teacher
Children’s Chorus Director and Voice, piano, ukulele and acting teacher
Florida native Ms. Elexa holds a bachelors of music in voice performance from Florida State University. There, she studied in Marcia Porter’s studio for four years and before that, she studied four years in the studio of Carla Connors in Tallahassee. Ms. Elexa performed in FSU Opera productions of Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream as Peaseblosson. At the Quincy Music Theatre she portrayed Belle in Disney’s The Beauty and the Beast and at the Tallahassee Little Theatre she performed Shelley in Bay Boy: The Musical and Wendy in Peter Pan.
Ms. Elexa studied at the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University in the studio of Phyllis Bryn-Julson for her masters of music in voice performance. Ms. Elexa portrayed Despina in the production of Cosi fan tutte in the Peabody Opera mainstage production.
Ms. Elexa made her debut with Capitol City Opera in 2012 as Lauretta in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi at Ogelthorpe University. She performed Despina, in English this time, in Cosi fan Tutte at the Conant Center for performing arts with CCOC in the fall of 2012 and in the spring of 2013 Ms. Bancroft was choir master for the children of Puccini’s La Boheme. She also sang one of her favorite musicals, Sweeney Todd, on the stage with Capitol City Opera.
She was honored to be a part of The Atlanta Opera’s children show and first commissioned opera, Rabbit Tales as the main character- Teenchy Duck. She and the cast traveled an entire school year to performance halls around Georgia bringing light opera to the ears of many young students.
Ms. Elexa founded Atlanta Music Education almost ten years ago with her partner Matt Johnson. Their studio of students has performed at events all over the Atlanta area including the Tucker Farmers Market, King’s Bridge Retirement home, the ARTLOT, San Francisco Coffee Shop, the Conant Performing Arts Center and The Corner Cup Coffee shop to name a few. Recently, her student booked the national Broadway tour of the King and I.
She is the former Education Director at Capitol City Opera and a mentor and speaker at the Dekalb School of the Arts. She hosts the popular Kids Open Mic programs featured in the Decatur Focus, Decatur Dispatch and Tucker Times magazines.
Ms. Elexa also has a love for painting and re-uses old sheet music for her own popular art pieces. She is an active mixed media artist in Georgia art festivals and most recently, Broadwaycon in New York City, Dragoncon and Megacon Orlando. You can find her work on Etsy now.
Ms. Elexa is on a waitlist for in-person and online lessons.
Piano, Voice, Beginner Guitar, and Ukulele
Hila Brod-Isseks, originally from Maryland, moved to Atlanta to study her Master of Music in Vocal Performance at Georgia State University. There, she studied with well-known Voice Professor, Rick Clement. With the GSU Opera, Ms. Hila performed challenging Mozart roles such as Queen of the Night in The Magic Flute, and Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni. She also participated in several partial roles such as Susanna from Le nozze di Figaro, Clorinda from La cenerentola, and Phyllis from Iolante.
Ms. Hila has traveled around the world performing opera in various summer festivals. She has sung the roles Monica from The Medium in Greece, Despina from Cosi fan tutte in Vermont, and Adina from The elixir of Lovein Austria. She continues to perform around Atlanta, and you can see her in Dinner and a Diva productions with Capitol City Opera, and has upcoming roles this summer with Atlanta Concert Opera.
Originally a rock musician, Ms. Hila discovered her passion for classical voice in undergrad but continued to study both jazz/pop. She also toured with a local band around the DC and Baltimore area. During her undergrad studies, Ms. Hila also taught as a music theory tutor at Towson University.
Ms. Hila grew up playing piano and has over a decade of formal classical piano training. She loves teaching beginner and intermediate piano students of all ages and incorporating her musical experience on and off stage to her unique lesson plans. In her years of being a music educator, Ms. Hila’s students have made great accomplishments in their school auditions, recitals and All State chorus.
Ms. Hila is well known to her student’s families for her individualized lesson plans over the last ten years. She believes in tailoring each lesson to a student’s strengths and improvising in a fun clever ways to help out with struggles students meet musically.
In her spare time, Ms. Hila enjoys spending time with her two dogs and going to see her saxophonist fiance perform at jazz concerts in the Atlanta area.
Ms. Hila is now available for in-person or online lessons.
Gabriel Jose Caballero
Private and Group Lessons in Voice, Acting, Ukulele, Guitar, Piano, and Audition Coaching.
Music has always been part of Mr. Gabriel’s life. From a very young age he remembers singing with his aunts and uncles in the car when taking long road trips. He grew up learning the songs that his grandmother use to teach her own children. At age 7, he started learning guitar and started playing in church groups and for his friends and family. As a child Gabriel took part of many different acting and vocal programs that helped shape his passion in music.
Mr. Gabriel completed his Bachelor’s Degree in Vocal Performance from Clayton State University. He is an active performer with Capitol City Opera, Atlanta Opera Fabrefaction Theater, Newnan Theather Company, Town and Country Theather, The Henry Players among others. . Mr. Gabriel has a deep passion for acting and musical theater, some of his favorite roles are, Jack (Into the Woods), Anthony (Sweeney Tood), Enjolras (Les Miserables) and Bernardo (West Side Story). He enjoys learning and teaching eclectic theatre roles and finding ways to relate to the characters and bring them to life on stage.
Mr. Gabe has taught private and group lesson for over 8 years and enjoys watching his students grow as musicians and turn into full blow performers. He has taught Voice, Piano and Guitar at Musicology Newnan and performed and taught for 4 years as a staff singer at Atlanta First United Methodist Church.
On his free time he enjoys taking road trips with his family, learning to cook new recipes, drawing and spending time with his little chihuahua Penny. His students are popularly known for their ukulele and singing duets of popular hits like Sweet Caroline to fun classics like You are my Sunshine.
Mr. Gabriel is now available for in-person or online lessons.
Piano, Voice, and Ukulele
Bryn Holdsworth is an operatic soprano with a huge passion for all types of music! She grew up as a very serious dancer, which she continued to teach as well for 15 years. Her love of dance introduced her to musical theater and opera which gave her the gumption to pursue a life in the arts!
She holds both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Manhattan School of Music in New York City and has performed all over the world since graduating. She has performed in operas with The Glimmerglass Festival, Des Moines Metro Opera, the Royal Opera at the Château de Versailles, Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center, and Carnegie Hall to name a few.
Her students enjoy working on all types of music, having dance parties, singing Disney tunes, composing songs about animals, and anything fun out in nature with piano and uke. Ms. Bryn’s students can be found in off-broadway performances today and even composing full studio albums.
Ms. Bryn fell in love with Atlanta while the resident soprano for the Atlanta Opera from 2016-2018 where she returned numerous times to perform. She is thrilled to be joining the Atlanta Music Education team and continuing her teaching studio in this city.
Ms. Bryn is available for in-person and online lessons.
Voice, Piano, Guitar, and Ukulele
Nathan Holmes, baritone, was born and raised in Decatur, Georgia. Nathan has done music in some form for his entire life. He began singing when he was 9 years old when he joined the Atlanta Young Singers and sang with them for his entire school career. Mr. Nathan won a spot with Georgia All-State Chorus multiple years while additionally making All-State Sight-Reading Chorus. At age 13, he began taking guitar and piano lessons. He is popularly known for his performances at several open mics around town singing various pop and folk tunes.
Mr. Nathan holds a Bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance from Mercer University. He has performed many roles in both disciplines of musical theatre and opera with companies such as Mercer University Opera, Harrower Summer Opera and Decatur High School Theatre. Some of career highlights include roles in musical theatre like Nathan Detroit (Guys & Dolls), Lewis (Pippin) and Corny Collins (Hairspray). His favorite operatic roles include The Fox (The Trial of Goldilocks, children’s opera), Guglielmo (Mozart’s Così fan tutte), and Giuseppe (Gilbert & Sullivsan’s The Gondoliers.)
Mr. Nathan’s background in teaching began with 3 years at Zoo Atlanta teaching summer camp and classes. He has also worked as a camp counselor for Atlanta Young Singers (AYS), working with their younger and adolescent aged children. In addition to his counselor duties, he has also worked with some of the younger singers with AYS in their sight-reading and theory abilities at their “Workbook Sessions.”
In his free time, Mr. Nathan loves to watch funny clips on YouTube with his students about music, listening to his favorite composers like Mahler, Puccini, and Rachmaninoff, and cheering on Atlanta United and Atlanta Braves.
Going into the 2021-2022 school year, Mr. Nathan has relocated to Texas to pursue his graduate degree in vocal pedagogy. He earned a lead role in his university in his first semester. Mr. Nathan is still an active substitute teacher for the AME teacher’s team as he continues to be a beloved member of the Decatur community.
Mr. Nathan is now available for online lessons.
Percussion, Drum Set and High School Master class leader
Brian Radock is a multifaceted percussionist/drummer with a Master’s Degree in percussion performance and over 20 years of experience in every music genre. Originally from Orlando, FL, Mr. Brian received his training from his mother and step-father Danny Gottlieb & Beth Gottlieb, who are both world famous drummers/percussionists.
Since moving to New York City in 2011, Mr. Brian has performed with 40+ musicals, 50+ bands of various genres, 3 record breaking tours of Italy (over 110 shows), several Symphony Orchestras (including the Manhattan Symphony in Lincoln Center), and in Carnegie Hall 9 different times.
In Summer 2019, Mr. Brian toured China as the drummer/percussionist/co-writer with the popular show Rhythm Boom Boom performing 32 shows in 24 cities for over 50,000 people
Mr. Brian has performed with world renown artists Kansas (Legendary Rock Band), Joe Hisaishi (Academy Award Winner for Spirited Away), Josh Young (Tony Award Nominee), Jenn Colella (Tony Award Nominee), Chilina Kennedy (Beautiful: The Carol King Musical), Andrew WK, Chris McQueen (Snarky Puppy), Lucy Woodward, Steven Curtis Chapman, Chris Martin (Chicago Symphony), & Casting Crowns.
Mr. Brian has been a music teacher for almost 20 years. Not only have his students frequently made all-state and All-County, many have gone on to perform with popular rock bands, received scholarships to music colleges, write film scores, and have famous performing careers with bands and orchestras.
Mr. Brian’s students enjoy learning drum set, percussion, mallet percussion (marimba, vibraphone, xylophone), Latin percussion (congas, bongos, cajòn, timbales), and Drum Line instruments. Students can learn over 100 instruments from Mr. Brian from countries in almost every continent!
From 2009-2011, Mr. Brian taught the drum line and front ensemble for the University of Alabama Million Dollar Band. He assisted in composing works they still perform today. Mr. Brian marched drum corps with Boston Crusaders and won DCI timpani individuals with a self composed solo.
When Mr. Brian moved to New York City 2011, he gained real world experience and Broadway experience to bring to his students. His students flourish while he continues to be a full time freelance musician in shows all over the world. Mr. Brian is currently a teacher for the Dunwoody High School band.
In his free time, Mr. Brian loves going to farmers markets, visiting art museums and watching Star Wars movies.
Mr. Brian is currently on a waitlist for in-person and online lessons.
Ally Jenkins is a violinist/violist based out of New York City. She began playing the violin when she was six years old and saw a fiddling street performer. After that, she was looking for any and every excuse to play: for family members, her stuffed animals, or anyone else who would listen. Ms. Ally later attended SUNY Purchase (’11) and majored in Violin Performance, studying with Cal Wiersma and Laurie Smukler.
Ms. Ally is a classically-trained violinist and member of several orchestras and chamber ensembles. Her quartet, The Manhattan Four, tours internationally every year and performs favorite chamber works all over the world.
She has taught private students for 15 years and group classes in NYC public schools for 2 years. Ms. Ally has also taught strings, led chamber ensembles, and conducted orchestras at Long Lake Camp for the Arts and The Noel Pointer Foundation.
Ms. Ally believes that classical training is important, but has always been interested in playing and teaching other genres too. She is also an avid fiddle player and regular member of several rock bands, as well as an active studio and pop musician. Ms. Ally has recorded for artists including Jewel, Snoop Dogg, Sky Ferreira, PJ Morton, The Lumineers, Stephen Sondheim, and Philip Glass. She has also contracted and led orchestras for major film scores and ad campaigns for companies like Google and Emergen-C.
She frequently appears on television. Recently, she played in NBC’s Jesus Christ Superstar Live and The Grammys’ Tribute to Elton John. Ms. Ally has played on The Tonight Show with Pete Townshend, Common, The Roots, Questlove, Alfie Boe, and Metroboomin. Ms. Ally has also performed live or toured with artists including The Who, Harry Connick Jr., Joshua Bell, Nas (NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert), will.i.am, Brian Stokes Mitchell, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, & Coldplay’s Chris Martin.
One of Ms. Ally’s other greatest passion is playing in pit orchestras. She likes opera pits but LOVES musical theatre pits. She has played in every level of theatre pit, from local elementary school spring shows to regional union theatres to Broadway. She also regularly performs with Broadway singers in the studio or in cabarets and charity performances.
When not playing the violin or viola, Ms. Ally is usually busy watching videos of dogs, reading, and cooking. She is again a full time performer with Broadway returning in 2021 and is available for only online lessons.
Ally is currently available for online only lessons per her busy touring schedule.
Piano, Voice, Prek Class Leader and Ukulele
Laura Posey McMahan, a converted Georgian originally from Southern Maryland, teaches Masterclasses, piano and voice through our sister studio in Oakhurst & loves collaborating to help with special Studio Events at AME. She is also the Music & Globetotting teacher at Holy Trinity Parish Preschool.
Ms. Laura graduated from Georgia Southern with a Bachelor of Arts in Music with an emphasis in Vocal Performance. She has sung with The Augusta Opera, the Michael O’Neal Singers, various choirs allowing her to tour Europe, debut at Carnegie Hall & is a founding member of the Oakhurst Community Choir. Ms. Laura continues her Music Education studies by taking Music Therapy courses and regularly attends Music Education Conferences to learn from others and share in her own classroom/lessons.
Ms. Laura has a deep love of music that she hopes is contagious to her students. Her laid back approach to teaching is to make lessons fun in order to excite the student about learning. She celebrates all genres of music and loves to encourage her students to request songs they enjoy to learn.
Ms. Laura and her husband live in Oakhurst with their two dogs. Together they enjoy traveling, especially to see live music. On their honeymoon to Switzerland they ended up at a music festival & have been to over twenty music festivals all over the US together. Last summer they enjoyed taking their nephew to a private concert in Vienna when cruising the Danube with their family. When home Laura enjoys gardening, entertaining and general merriment.
Ms. Laura exclusively teaches private lessons from her own private home and is currently on a waitlist.
Piano, Guitar, Voice, and Ukulele
Kathryn Allen is a lifelong musician, who just wants to share the gift of music with everyone she can! She began picking out songs by ear on the piano at age 6, and remained in lessons through college. By age 16, she was working as a paid musician around her hometown, at up to 3 different churches at a time!
Ms. Kathryn holds a B. A. in Theatre from Meredith College, and attended the Audio Engineering program at UNC-Asheville. She remains active in the theatre as a sound designer/music director, and has worked with theaters all over the country. Most recently in Atlanta, she was the sound designer for La Cage aux Folles at OutFront Theatre.
To no one’s shock, she primarily studied Musical Theatre in voice lessons in college. Ms. Kathryn loves to teach pop singers to find their own style and voice. She has been a songwriter since age 15, and loves collaborating with students on songs. When she is not playing Disc Golf or working at Candytopia, you can find her performing live on Twitch (at least during the pandemic).
Ms.Valdes is an Atlanta-based musician and teacher who holds a Bachelor’s of Music from Georgia State University. There she was awarded the Hoover Choral Scholarship. Ms. Valdes has also been awarded the top prize at the Corbett Opera Scholarship Competition at Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and is the recipient of a Shoshana Foundation Grant. Maria has a successful career as a Soprano soloist and Opera singer since 2015. Shes known for performing a solo recital of Nordic, Spanish, and Latin American music. She continues to perform and is recently described by New York Times as a “first-rate singing actress”. Ms.Valdes has performed with major opera companies and symphonies such as Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, Berkshire Opera Festival, Phoenix Symphony, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Virginia Symphony, Chattanooga Symphony, and Virginia Symphony. Maria has sung the roles of Younger Alyce in Glory Denied, Doris Parker in Charlie Parker’s Yardbird, and Lucy in The Threepenny Opera for Atlanta Opera. She is also known for performing in the concert realm as the soprano soloist in The Brooklyn Art Song Society singing Chants d’ Auvergne by Joseph Canteloube and in the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra singing Serenade to Music by Ralph Vaugn Williams.
As well as performing regularly with The Atlanta Opera and Atlanta Symphony, Ms.Valdes also holds a position as a staff musician at First Presbyterian Church of Atlanta. Maria is a sought-after teacher and has been invited to give master classes and talks at Georgia State University, San Fransisco Conservatory, UC Berkley, and Sprayberry High School.
In her spare time, Maria loves gardening, hiking and playing with her dog, Chopper! Ms.Valdes is looking forward to working with the Atlanta Music Education team!
Ms.Valdes is available for substitute lessons only.
Low Brass, Piano, Voice, Composition.
Atlanta-native Ben Dawson is a Trombone/Euphonium player with 14 years of both classical and jazz performance experience. From a young age Ben has been an avid gamer and lover of musicals and credits video game music as the driving force behind his love for music. After learning Euphonium and Trombone in middle school, Ben picked up the Tuba in high school where he served as a section leader and Dunwoody High’s Drum Major.
Mr. Ben holds a bachelor’s degree in Music Composition from the University of Missouri-Columbia where he studied voice, composition, and Euphonium as well as played in many of the school’s different ensembles including choirs, jazz band, and Marching Mizzou, the university’s marching band. In 2019, he was commissioned to write The Hunter’s Dream for the Amon Carter Museum of American Art. In 2020, he was commissioned by The Sheldon Concert Hall | Saint Louis to write a piece for French horn and piano, God of Doors. Ben loves musicals and before returning home to Georgia enjoyed playing in his community theatre’s productions. In the summer of 2019 he even conducted Columbia Entertainment Company’s run of Hairspray as Orchestra Director.
As an educator, Mr. Ben’s teaching is based around the intersectionality of music theory, performance technique, and auditory skills. Whether you’re learning how to read notes, how to identify a V chord, or taking composition lessons, we will touch on aspects of solfege, interval training, and keyboard competency. As a proponent of catered teaching, Mr. Ben devises custom lesson plans and teaching strategies based on what and how the student wishes to learn.
In his free time, Ben enjoys playing video games, watching audio production videos on YouTube, and studying Japanese.
Piano, Guitar, Voice, Percussion.
Jack is joining the AME family while he is currently pursuing a degree from Georgia State University in Piano Performance and is looking to further the degree with a masters in orchestral and choral conducting.
Along with his Piano Performance degree, Mr. Allred performs in the University Singers Choir at Georgia State University and plays Timpani in an Orchestra for FBC Jonesboro. Jack is looking forward to performing with Sarah Brightman at the Fox Theater in December 2021.
In his spare time, Jack enjoys working at the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta as a maintenance diver.
Victoria is currently studying at Emory University with a Double Major in Violin Performance and plans to major in Music Performance and Business. She has experience teaching as she has been teaching one-on-one violin lessons at Benteen Elementary since January of 2021.
Victoria was one of twelve individuals selected worldwide to attend BUTI’s Violin Workshop 2018, and was also selected for Curtis Institute’s Summerfest and Interlochen’s Summer Violin Institute. She has performed in master classes with many renowned musicians, such as Midori Goto, Robert McDuffie, Vienna Philharmonic members, and Chicago Symphony members.
Victoria is now a member of the Symphony Orchestra at Emory where she has been awarded Associate Concertmaster and Principal 2nd Violin for the Spring 2021 season, and has received 1st place in the Southwest Florida Symphony Society Scholarship Competition.
In her free time, Victoria enjoys competing, attending music summer camps, and teaching other students who share a love for the violin.
Baylee Milair has joined the Atlanta Music Education team with lots of experience in customer service under her belt! She’s worked in customer service, retail, and administrative jobs her whole life, and enjoys helping others and being social. Since 2020 Baylee has been a stay at home mom and is excited to get back to work and join the team!
Baylee was born and raised in Melbourne, Florida but recently moved to Roswell, Georgia where she spends her time with her husband and three year old son. While in Georgia, Baylee has enjoyed her time visiting the aquarium, zoo and museums. In Florida, she often visited the Disney World theme parks with her family. Disney is her favorite place to be, she remembers her mother taking her as a child and most of her favorite memories were made at the park. As she’s grown up, her love for Disney has also grown. If it’s something Disney related, Baylee most likely knows it!
Baylee’s greatest inspiration is her son, Grayson. He is a smart and loving little boy who loves puzzles and music. He teaches her new things all the time and keeps Baylee on her toes.She loves being a mom, even with all the curve balls that come with parenthood. When Baylee isn’t with friends and family, she loves to do makeup, paint, and play her ukulele. She loves getting creative and having fun! Baylee loves all types of music, but her favorite artist of all time is Billy Joel. She grew up listening to his music since she was in the womb, and one of the highlights in her life was seeing him in concert with her mom and sisters.
Amanda was born and raised in West Palm Beach, Florida and has recently moved back after living in Orlando for the last 8 years. While Amanda enjoyed living in Orlando, she is happy to be close to family and the beach again!
She lives with her grandmother whom she takes care of, her boyfriend and their adorable cat Xena. While Amanda loves going for adventures outside, she also enjoys reading a good book or getting creative with different art mediums. Amanda is excited to join the Atlanta Music Education team because it is the perfect combination of her educational background and love of music! Many of her fondest memories are singing in the car, going to concerts with friends and learning how to play guitar (Ask her to play her mean intro to “Crazy Train”!).
Born and raised in Georgia, Mia Peterson is a graduate of the Atlanta International School (AIS). Mia is fluent in Spanish after studying the language for 12 years at AIS. Mia is also conversant in Mandarin Chinese after studying it for 5 years. As part of her in country language studies, Mia travelled to Costa Rica and China where she studied at Shanghai Highschool.
Mia is an accomplished trombonist, composer and is recipient of the national Quincy Jones Musicianship Award. Mia has performed in the District Honor Band in 2016 through 2019. She also has performed in the Georgia Allstate Band in both 2018 and 2019. She has also performed at Carnegie Hall with the Honors Performance series in 2018.
During highschool, Mia tutored and mentored many of the low brass players and volunteered to teach lessons to middle school students. She has also performed in the pit orchestra of the AIS production of Mary Poppins alongside professional musicians. Mia has participated in multiple AIS recitals as a soloist. As a project in high school, Mia composed a piece dedicated to the middle school band and was performed for her.
While at AIS, Mia was a student ambassador for 4 years starting in 2016. As an ambassador, Mia was required to represent the school, give tours to prospective students and families, help new students adjust to life at AIS, assist with events at AIS, and more.
Mia has had the opportunity to internship with the Atlanta Opera during the production of Sweeney Todd . During this internship, Mia learned about the role of backstage operations of the productions, understood various processes for executing an opera, managed and organized various artist documents, shadowed rehearsals and assisted in line delivery and assisted with translation from Spanish to English.
Outside of work and school, Mia loves to paint, compose, and spend time with her cat, Annie.