The Owner

Owner

Sherry Miller is the owner and one of the piano teachers at S Music Studio. She has been teaching piano and voice for over 40 years. Her B.S. in Music Education is from West Chester University. Sherry has been involved in music since middle school. She loves teaching, working with children and helping her teachers be the best they can be. Providing music lessons for the residents of the MOT area is a dream come true.

Sherry has been married for over 40 years and has 2 married girls and 6 grandsons and 1 very spoiled little princess. When not teaching she loves spending time with her children and grandchildren, reading books and gardening. Sherry's husband is an associate pastor at Love of Christ Church where she play the keyboard with the worship band. 

 

Studio Director

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Carissa Pierce is the Director at S Music Studio. In addition she also teaches both group and private students. Carissa has been trained musically in voice and piano as well as working with young children. She is currently doing online classes at University of Valley Forge where she is majoring in church ministry and minoring in worship arts. Carissa is an accomplished worship leader and keyboardist at her church. 

Teachers

Penny Mears graduated from Lee University with a degree in music and has taught piano lessons for the past 35 years.  She has accompanied choirs led worship and taught privately throughout her career.  She homeschooled her 4 boys and still teaches history at Mount Sophia Academy.  Penny is an accomplished teacher who loves working with children. 

Morgan Whitcraft has played violin for 30 years, and has taught for nearly 20 years. She was first enrolled in musical instruction at the age of three, when her grandfather watched her become captivated by violinist Ithzak Perlman's television performance. Soon after she began instruction in flute and piano.

The Suzuki method helped foster Morgan's early musical education, and was influential in developing her passion for music and the desire to share music with others. After completing the method at age twelve she established her own private studio at fourteen; she has not stopped teaching music since. She has received training in the Suzuki method and specializes in teaching younger children.

As a young adult Morgan majored in Violin Performance and Music Education at the Hartt School of Music, as well as studying at the University of Delaware with world-renowned violinist Xiang Gao. She took the role of Assistant Concertmaster in Newark Symphony for four years, and is often found collaborating with other members to form small ensembles for seasonal performances. Morgan is currently a member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas and the American String Teachers Association, and is also a certified Kindermusik instructor.

Andrew Denneny is currently a student at Delaware Technical & Community College, studying to be a math teacher. He has been playing piano since he was 12 years old, and has lots of music experience, including marching band, symphonic band, musical theater, music theory, and concert choir. He is also actively involved in a local competitive drumline team. 

Herbie Maitlandt began playing guitar at an early age, spurred on by his cousin. After initial meetings with his cousin, he decided to leap into the deep end of the pool. His formal studies began with Sal Salvador and Joe Carter in New York. After high school he continued his studies at Lehman College with the primary focus being on performance.

Herb began teaching after one of his teachers recommended him for a teaching position at, The American Institute of Guitar in New York. Along the way he has performed across the country as well as Europe and Asia.

In his lessons, the focus is on the student and how far they wish to take their playing and studies. Above all else, it’s going to be a fun experience for both student and teacher.

Pierce Deshields held his first pair of drumsticks in his church at the age of five. Since then, he has played with multiple choirs and churches throughout Delaware and Maryland, and enjoys teaching kids at his church.

He played drums in elementary school and throughout high school for the chorus, concert, jazz, and marching bands. In Pierce’s last three years of high school, he served as Drum Section Leader and Band President. During his career, he has mastered the snare, tri-tom, quad, and timpani drums. He also played the vibraphones.  Pierce created and arranged many drum cadences for his high school marching band, several of which are still being used today.

Pierce began playing for the Church of God in Christ’s Delaware State Choir at the age of 14, and retired after 19 years of service. However, he continues to play regularly for his home church in Millsboro, Delaware.

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After retiring in 2016 from a 44 year career as a public school orchestra director, Carl Van Valkenburg moved to Delaware with wife Jane to be closer to family. He taught in schools in Virginia, Ohio and Texas. He also played professionally in the Flint Symphony, Toledo Symphony, Richmond Symphony and the Brazos Valley Symphony. In Delaware he has played with the Newark and Dover Symphony Orchestras and the Wilmington Community Orchestra. He received a Bachelor of Music Degree with Distinction from the University of Michigan and a Masters Degree in Music also from the U of M. As a student at the U of M he majored in viola, took private lessons in violin, cello and bass as well, and took classes in piano, trumpet and percussion. As a music teacher, he also has taught general music k-5 and guitar classes.

Kelly Willburn has enjoyed music since she was a child, starting with singing in church. Soon after that she took piano lessons and started playing violin at her elementary school. As she began middle school she picked up the cello and fell in love with its beautiful sound.

In 7th grade she joined her first youth community orchestra and soon thereafter a more advanced group called the Young Artists Symphony Orchestra. She went on tour at 14 years old with this orchestra and performed in several cities in China as part of the prelude to the 2008 Olympics. At 17, she went on tour again to Germany and Austria. During high school she played with the school orchestra at many California Music Festival competitions, including competing as a part of several quartets.

She has a Bachelor of Science in Food Science. She still enjoys science and baking along with her love of music.

Kelly teaches both cello, her main instrument and violin. She is looking forward to working with cello and violin students at S Music Studio. 

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Peter Serwik is in his second year at U of D studying elementary education with a minor in special education. He loves working with kids as he shares his passion for music with them. Peter started learning the guitar when he was young and was lead guitarist in a rock band while in Highschool. He is proficient at the guitar but can also teach ukulele. He has been teaching guitar privately for a little over 4 years.

Haley has loved music for as long as she can remember. She began piano lessons at the age of 8 and continued exploring music throughout middle school, high school, and college. She graduated with a BA in Spanish Education from the University of Delaware and has been joyfully teaching both music and Spanish for students of all ages for over 10 years. In her free time, Haley can be found spending time with her family, painting, cooking, and speaking Español.

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Tina Chou has actively performed as a solo pianist and collaborative musician in national and international festivals and competitions. As a former member of the West Island Youth Symphony Orchestra (WIYSO), she performed at the Maison Symphonique in the Association d’Orchestre de Jeunes du Quebec (AOJQ) Festival in 2016. As the first prize winner of the 2012 Crescendo International Music Competition, she was invited to perform at Carnegie Hall and made her debut in January of 2012.

 

Ms. Tina holds a Master of Music in piano pedagogy at Michigan State University, a Master of Music in collaborative piano also at MSU and a Bachelor of Music in piano performance with a double minor in music education and in early music performance from McGill University. Besides sharing music through performing, she is a passionate and enthusiastic piano teacher with 10 years of experience teaching students of various ages and levels. She believes that music lessons should be accessible to anyone who has an interest to learn, and she enjoys helping her students find their voice through the art of piano playing.

 

 

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Hayley Mercado is a professional vocalist and voice coach. She has been singing for nearly 22 years. Hayley got her start in theater at the age of 5 and soon fell in love with being on stage. By the age of 8, she was taking singing lessons and participating in her school's chorus and theater clubs. She continued doing theater, performing in productions like Annie, Guys and Dolls, Oklahoma, Smokey Joe's Cafe, The Wiz, The Color Purple, and many more. She then began singing professionally when she was recruited as a singer for Faith Works Drama Company at just 14 years old. She later received a performance contract through Walt Disney World Resorts at 19 and shortly after began her career as a recording artist. She was recently recognized by the International Soaring Eagle Awards for her influence and community outreach through gospel music. Hayley continues recording her own music and touring the country with Faith Works Drama Co.. She has been in countless cabarets and is booked regularly at venues all along the east coast. You may spot her at your next wedding or family outing as she sings lead for cover bands like The Quake and Altimate Choice. Hayley is also an actress through SAG-AFTRA and has been featured in short films and TV series like M. Night Shyamalan's "Servant" on Apple TV. In her free time, Hayley loves doing karaoke and spending time with her family. She is a huge fan of singing genres like soul, jazz, and gospel. She hopes to use her experience in theater and the music industry to influence and inspire her students at S Music Studios!

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Manny Scott is a percussion-concentrated Music Student at Delaware state University. His interest in music started at the young age of five years old. Introduced to drums by his father, Manny grew an early love and passion for music. He started playing snare drum for the band in the fourth grade, then, from 5th to 6th grade, he joined the intermediate band. During the spring of 2010 and 2011, He was selected as a percussionist for the Kent County Junior Honors Band. By high school, Manny was playing for every ensemble, including symphonic, jazz, and marching band. In the marching band, he served as the drumline section leader and has been knowledgeable in a variety of different percussion

Manny served a majority of his college matriculation as a Symphonic percussionist, jazz pianist, and marching band percussionist, with prior experience and knowledge on every marching drum. 

He is currently a church organist and drummer in the Delaware area. “Music is my everything.” says Manny. He aspires to teach the next generation after him to develop that same love for music. Manny is approaching his senior year of his Music curriculum, and plans to perform, create, and teach music.

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Carrie Gallagher has been studying music since she was ten years old. She never
let go of her passion and went on to get a degree in Music Education with a concentration in piano from Messiah College. After graduating, she went on to teach piano and voice lessons at ARS Escuela, a music studio in Madrid, Spain. Since returning to the States, she has been teaching general music classes to PreK- Kindergarten children at Caravel Academy and continues to give private piano lessons. Carrie will be teaching piano and voice at S Music Studio while teaching Spanish full-time at Caravel Academy.

Matthew L. Horan is an accomplished musician at 29 with 18 years of musical experience under his belt. His musical journey started in 4th grade where he played alto and tenor sax in concert band until 7th grade. At age 12 Matthew picked up guitar and had guitar classes 1-4 in high school as well as a short period of private lessons in classical guitar. Matthew has played lead guitar in several bands playing shows in the tri-state area, and most of the music was composed by Matthew himself and in the process he learned recording software such as FL Studio and Garage band. Matthew then went to Wilmington University for game design and development furthering his musical education as well by studying soundtracks to film and games, sound effects, aspects of sound design and setting the scene, which involved extensive use of Pro-Tools the professional standard music recording software today. 

 

Currently Matthew has extensive knowledge of composition with a multitude of instruments though primarily focuses on guitar,  and is the lead guitarist for his Christ the Cornerstone church in bear. While teaching music his goal is to give students an experience learning music that is fun, engaging, and prepares them well for whatever musical paths they may choose in life.