Piano Adventures Clinicians

Piano Adventures Clinicians have been selected by Nancy and Randall Faber to conduct teacher training, workshops, conference lectures and product showcases on behalf of Piano Adventures. As specialists in the field of piano pedagogy, their high levels of education and achievement make them uniquely qualified to teach both students and teachers, at every level and stage of development.


3169-edit-3-kulkarni-v-headshot-2014Veena Kulkarni-Rankin
Lead Instructor, Faber Piano Institute

Veena delights in teaching piano students of all ages — from the earliest years of study through advanced concert repertoire. She has also taught at Madonna University and at the University of Windsor in Canada. As a worship leader at the Ann Arbor Christian Reformed Church, Veena is at home in both the contemporary worship band and on the concert stage, and performs regularly as a solo and chamber musician. In 2011, she won the Best Liszt Interpretation prize at the Liszt-Garrison International Piano Competition and gave two East Coast premieres. Veena earned a Doctorate in Piano Performance and Pedagogy under Logan Skelton and John Ellis at the University of Michigan. Prior to that, she studied at Indiana University with Emile Naoumoff and Professors Brancart, Auer, Gulli and Tocco, and at the Royal Academy of Music with Hamish Milne.


jon-ophoffJon Ophoff
Clinician, Director of Production and Technology

Jon works with Nancy and Randall Faber on all aspects of book production and multimedia support. As a workshop clinician, he educates teachers in effective use of the publications in studios across the U.S. and Canada. He earned his Bachelor of Music degree from the University Michigan School of Music where he studied Film Music Composition, and was a winner of BMI’s Pete Carpenter Fellowship. He has produced custom music for media, with brands including Best Buy, Levi’s, and Dockers. At the Faber Piano Institute, Jon enjoys teaching students of all ages. He encourages creativity through composition and improvisation, incorporating music technology alongside traditional tools.


egblogphoto2Elizabeth Gutierrez, NCTM
Clinician, Performer, Composer, Blogger

Pianist Elizabeth Gutierrez enjoys a distinguished career as a performer, author, composer, blogger and clinician. She has taught on the keyboard faculties at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and The University of Texas at San Antonio, and has also served as a piano editor for major music publishers. Her articles on teaching have been featured in national music journals and she is co-author of the highly acclaimed A Practical Guide to Solo Piano Music, a comprehensive reference guide to the standard piano repertoire. She has taught Piano Adventures since its inception and for many years worked closely with Nancy and Randall Faber as an editor.  Elizabeth tours the U.S. regularly showcasing Piano Adventures and presenting teacher workshops at all levels.


Landon Baumgard
Clinician, Digital Engagement Manager

Landon Baumgard teaches piano and music theory, and works as a vocal coach at the South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities. He has taught at the Faber Piano Institute, and currently manages community engagement for Piano Adventures. He has collaborated with many musical organizations, including LA Opera, the LA Phil, and LA Master Chorale. Baumgard earned a DMA in collaborative piano from the University of Michigan.


David Andruss

David Andruss
Editor and Clinician, Europe

David studied piano and pedagogy at the University of Southern California and at Northern Illinois University. A Fulbright Scholarship made it possible for him to study in Germany, where he received his Konzertreife-Diplom, and the highly acclaimed Meisterklassendiplom. Andruss is active as a concert pianist, collaborative artist, author, arranger and teacher. Since 2000, he has devoted his high level of musicianship to the development of quality instructional method books for piano and violin. He is the lead editor for the Continental European Editions of Piano Adventures, and offers workshops and seminars to train piano teachers throughout Europe. He also teaches accompaniment and keyboard skills at the University in Würzburg.


Brian DiBlassio
Clinician, Jazz and Creative Improvisation

Brian DiBlassio is Associate Professor of Music at the University of Michigan – Flint. He composes and arranges for symphonic, chamber, vocal, and jazz ensembles. His work has been performed by the University of Michigan – Flint ensembles, the Flint Symphony Orchestra, and aired on public and national television. As a performer and recording artist, DiBlassio enjoys performing jazz, Latin jazz, and classical piano. He holds degrees from the University of Miami and the University of Michigan, and teaches privately in Ann Arbor, MI. Brian joins Faber Piano Adventures as a clinician with focus on teaching jazz and creative improvisation.


IMG_2085Lin Tian and Patrick Bachmann
Editors and Clinicians, China

Dr. Lin Tian and Dr. Patrick Bachmann are a husband and wife piano teaching and performing duo based in Yantai, China. They are currently on the piano faculty of Yantai University and run a successful private teaching studio. They met while pursuing Doctor of Musical Arts degrees at Louisiana State University, where they formed their piano duo based on a desire to explore new and unique genres of music and introduce audiences to repertoire outside the typical duet canon. Their performances have taken them across the U.S. and China, where they have premiered works of contemporary U.S. and Chinese composers. They bring over a decade of experience teaching the Piano Adventures method. Their students have won competitions at both the local and state levels in both the United States and China.


Mauricio Ramirez
Editor and Clinician, Mexico

Mauricio holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Music with a major in piano from the University of Guadalajara, and has performed with the Jalisco Philharmonic Orchestra in Guardalajara’s Teatro Degoliado. He is owner and director of the music studio, “Academia Musical Moncayo” where 150 students take music lessons each week. He collaborates and contributes as an editor on the Spanish edition of Piano Adventures, and conducts workshops and teacher training throughout Mexico.


Ana Cristina Gonzalez
Editor and Clinician, Colombia

Ana Cristina holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Piano Performance from the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Bogotá, Colombia, where she has been part of the keyboard faculty since 2001. As a Fulbright scholar, she received her Master’s degree in Piano Pedagogy from the University of Oregon. She took part in designing the first Master’s program in Piano Pedagogy in Colombia at the Universidad Nacional. She maintains an active private piano studio and has performed and recorded in Colombia as an accompanist and chamber musician. Ana Cristina collaborates as a translator and editor of the Piano Adventures Spanish edition and enjoys sharing its philosophy and pedagogy with piano teachers throughout Colombia.


Carly McDonald
Clinician, Australia

Carly McDonald is a passionate music educator and business professional. A highly regarded keynote speaker in Australasia, Carly seeks to connect teachers with creative ideas and strong business acumen. In addition to her own teaching studio, Carly is Creative Editor and contributing writer for The Piano Teacher (magazine and blog), the Editor of the Australian Piano Teachers’ Music HUB, and a moderator of the Australasian Piano Teachers’ Facebook group. She serves as a council member on the Music Teachers’ Association of South Australia, and is their social media advisor. Carly is the Australian Ambassador for Piano Adventures.


Philippa Topham
Clinician, United Kingdom

Philippa Topham studied as a concert pianist with Colin Horsley and Renna Kellaway at The Royal Northern College of Music, where she was awarded a scholarship and several prizes. She took part in masterclasses with Vlado Perlemuter, Tamas Vasary and Sir William Glock. Philippa has performed as a solo pianist, concerto soloist, chamber musician and accompanist throughout the UK, Holland, and Middle East. She received her post-graduate Certificate in Education from Manchester University, and was a member of the Professional Development Panel for ABRSM. Professional activities include adjudicating, presenting seminars, leading singing sessions with dementia patients, and mentoring teachers for Diplomas. She has a thriving piano studio in Dorset as well as a busy performance schedule as an accompanist.