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Sahak Karapetyan graduated with a Masters in Music Performance from Komitas State Conservatory. He has served as Concertmaster of several symphonic and chamber orchestras. Sahak is a founder and Music Director of the St. Gregory chamber orchestra as well as the Bravo String Quartet. He is a member of the Santa Barbara, Redlands, and San Bernardino symphony orchestras, and has taught violin, viola, cello and piano privately for over thirty years. Among his students are distinguished musicians who have won grand prizes in music competitions and many who have subsequently devoted their lives to professional playing. Sahak joins ALF Instrumental Music for his seventh year as lead Beginning Strings and String Orchestra Instructor.
Strings Assistant Instructor
Ripsi Yepremyan earned her Master’s degree in music performance and has been teaching violin and piano privately for numerous years. She is also a performing violinist with local professional orchestras. Ripsi’s devotion to her work is genuine and her approach to musical study promotes confidence and enthusiasm. Students are empowered to deal with the challenges of mastering an instrument and inspired to persevere through the difficult stages of practice that ultimately bring success. Ripsi joins ALF Instrumental Music for her seventh year as Beginning Strings and String Orchestra Assistant Instructor.
Brass & Concert Band Instructor
With over 1,500 credits in Film, Television and recording, USC graduate Phillip Yao has worked with many of the world’s top composers and musicians including John Williams, James Horner and Jerry Goldsmith. Mr. Yao can also be heard on recordings showcasing a variety of artists from all genres, Hilary Hahn, Barbra Streisand, Aerosmith, Josh Groban and Ray Charles, to name a few. In addition, he has years of orchestral, opera, ballet and Broadway show experience having played with the Pasadena Symphony, Pacific Symphony, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Los Angeles Opera, Phantom of the Opera and Wicked. Phillip returns for a fifth year with ALF Instrumental Music as lead Beginning Brass and Concert Band Instructor.
Woodwinds Instructor & Concert Band Assistant Instructor
A graduate of La Cañada High School, Colin Ring has continued his studies at PCC and USC. His professional percussion training includes programs at the Jamie Font School of Music, Colburn School of Music, and the Berklee School of Music in Boston. Colin is a drummer for various hard-rock and metal bands. He organized and produced a benefit concert, “Rock for Peru,” which raised money for a medical mission to Peru. He has been giving private drum lessons for the last 13 years. Colin first worked with ALF in 2008-2009 as an assistant in the Brass and Percussion class. This is Colin’s seventh year as Percussion Instructor with ALF Instrumental Music.
After graduating from La Cañada High School in 2012, Sean Moriarty became a part of the percussion staff with the LCHS Band for the 2012-2013 school year. Later he attended Glendale Community College with a major in Music. Currently, he plays drums for the local band Ryder Buck & The Breakers, and formerly with the Hollywood based Hard Rock/Pop trio Varna which has received acclaim from the LA Music Awards and the North American Independent Rock Music Awards. He also teaches privately, does recording sessions, and works as the Strategic Entertainment Manager for MAC Creative Management. Sean joins the ALF Instrumental Music program for his seventh year as Percussion Instructor.
Brass Assistant Instructor
Richie Francisco is a professional trumpet player and teacher based in Los Angeles, CA. He was born and raised in San Diego, CA where he was introduced to the trumpet in middle school band. He holds a Bachelor of Music in trumpet performance from California State University, Northridge and a Master of Music in trumpet performance from the University of Southern California. He is the second trumpet player with the recently founded California Young Artist Symphony based in Newbury Park, CA and he has played in a variety of settings, including performances with the San Diego Philharmonic, San Luis Obispo Masterchorale, the 5th Floor Brass Quintet, the Two Button Brass Quintet, and The Convertibles. He is also an active music educator with experience teaching students aged 5 to 65 throughout Southern California. Richie’s goal as a teacher is to help students refine their skills as a musician, but more importantly help students enjoy themselves while playing music. Richie joins ALF Instrumental Music this year as Beginning Brass Assistant Instructor.
Woodwinds Assistant Instructor
Garrett Becker earned two Associate of Arts degrees from Citrus College in Fine Arts and Music Performance, as well as a Bachelor’s degree in Jazz Performance. Playing saxophones, clarinets, and flutes, he has performed with numerous music groups representing almost every genre including jazz, rock, RnB, ska, and pit orchestras across the nation. Garrett has also been teaching private woodwind lessons and sectionals since 2012. Coming from a family full of teachers and exposed to teaching methods throughout his childhood, Garrett finds profound enjoyment and fulfillment in helping his students reach and even surpass their goals. Garrett joins ALF this year as Beginning Woodwind Assistant Instructor.
Band Staff 2021 – 2022
Strings Staff 2021 – 2022