Lessons & Teachers

Scherzo Music School

Piano • Voice • Strings • Woodwinds • Harp

Piano Lessons

Scherzo Music School piano lessons are an excellent way to introduce children as young as 4 years old to the benefits of music. Lessons at Scherzo Music School does not follow a “one size fits all” approach. We design each students approach based on the cognitive and dextral development of each of our students. We design our piano lessons plan from some of the most popular approaches. Our program includes rhythmic development, ear training, reading, singing and proper piano technique. We encourage our students and parents to set goals in order to see the progress of each student. These goals can be participation in piano recitals, peer performances, or taking standardized music exams like the ABRSM.

We know how difficult it is to choose the right approach, the right teacher and schedule. At Scherzo we work as a team; so when you enroll at our school, you are in the hands of not only one but a full team of highly qualified professionals to oversee the student’s music education.

Piano Teachers

Pablo Valencia


Voice Lessons

Voice Lessons at Scherzo Music School helps teach proper singing technique, teach the fundamentals of reading music, music theory, and musicianship skills. Scherzo’s Voice teachers work with each students to find the music and music style that they want to learn and together build a teaching plan to safely work up and surpass the students original goals. Private Voice lessons help develop the singers inner ear, vocal range, and overall confidence as a musician.

Voice Teachers

String Lessons

String Lessons at Scherzo Music School designed to teach musicians proper instrument care, correct posture to prevent injuries, and to teach the fundamentals of reading music, music theory, and musicianship skills. String lessons are very beneficial for young students that plan to or have started music classes in school. Students that take private lessons have a better grasp of music skills and often surpass their peers in the classroom. Private Lessons have also been proven to help young students develop better problem solving skills, communication skills, and improvement with self-esteem.

String Teachers


Wind Lessons at Scherzo Music School designed to teach musicians proper instrument care, correct posture to prevent injuries, and to teach the fundamentals of reading music, music theory, and musicianship skills. Wind lessons are very beneficial for young students that plan to or have started music classes in school. Students that take private lessons have a better grasp of music skills and often surpass their peers in the classroom. Private Lessons have also been proven to help young students develop better problem solving skills, communication skills, and improvement with self-esteem.

Woodwind Teachers


Harp Lessons at Scherzo Music School designed to teach musicians proper instrument care, correct posture to prevent injuries, and to teach the fundamentals of reading music, music theory, and musicianship skills. Private Lessons have also been proven to help young students develop better problem solving skills, communication skills, and improvement with self-esteem.

Harp Teacher

Music Theory Workshops

Improving your music skills by learning Music Theory ” aka the grammar of music “. Join us as we hold a series of workshops for Scherzo students to learn the ins and out of Music Theory. Benefits of learning music theory include:

Available for all skills levels starting age 6 and up.

Music Discovery

A special group class designed to introduce the beginning musicians to the exciting world of music. This Music Discovery Group class is for entry students, age 3.5 – 5 years old. Topics include:

Don't Miss a beat

Join our mailing list
for events, discounts, & more

Scherzo Piano

Aurelio Torres

Founder & Piano Teacher

Aurelio Torres started his music learning at the age of five with the recorder. He soon learned the melodic and mandolin on his own and started private piano lessons shortly after. At the age of 17, he was accepted in the National School of Music of the UNAM in Mexico City, where he took organ and piano, in addition to musicianship, harmony, choral practices, analysis, history and other subjects. During that time he participated in chamber ensembles and played actively in events throughout the University and around the country.

Mr. Torres started teaching music at the age of 19 at the Yamaha Music School in Mexico City, where he received music pedagogy training and his certification as musicianship and piano instructor, as well as examiner for the Yamaha Music Curriculum. During his work at the Yamaha Music School, he participated in national and international music contest in Mexico, Uruguay and Japan, both as a student and as a teacher and travel extensively throughout Mexico proctoring the Yamaha Grade Level Exam. While living in Mexico, Mr. Torres performed at different venues as a soloist and as an accompanist. Mr. Torres worked as the accompanist of the Japanese Choir “Cosmos” for couple of years before moving to Los Angeles, California.

In California, he continued his studies at the City College of San Francisco where he obtained 2 computer science certificates in UNIX systems and Network Administration, and music at the University of California, Berkeley, from where he received his degree.

Mr. Torres taught at several music schools in the Peninsula and Berkeley. In 2000 He started his own private studio in San Mateo. Mr. Torres’ studio was the base for Scherzo Music School in 2010. Currently Mr. Torres serve as the school director of the school while he continues to share his love and passion for music.

Ryan Downey

Voice & Piano Teacher

Ryan Downey, bass-baritone, is a native of Phoenix, Arizona, where he began singing with the Phoenix Boys Choir when he was 9. He recently graduated with his Doctor of Musical Arts in Voice Performance from Arizona State University and received a Master of Music degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music and a Bachelor of Music degree from Arizona State University where he graduated with academic honors. He won the Elizabeth Stoeckler Stevens Prize in German Lieder and has worked with Michael Tilson Thomas, Warren Jones, Lori Laitman, and George Darden. 
Downey has performed roles in Così fan tutte, Ariadne auf Naxos, La traviata, Gianni Schicchi, Le nozze di Figaro, Die Zauberflöte, Don Giovanni, Handel’s Serse, and Gallantry. He has recently appeared with the Oregon Bach Festival Berwick Chorus, True Concord Voices and Orchestra, the Phoenix Chorale, the Arizona Opera Chorus, and the Trinity Cathedral Choir. Ryan has performed on two GRAMMY-winning albums, the Phoenix Chorale’s album of Rachmaninoff’s All Night Vigil and True Concord’s recording of Stephen Paulus’s music Far in the Heavens
Over the years, Ryan has taught private voice at Arizona State University and Phoenix College as well as in his private studio. Many of his young students have continued their personal study of music and voice at the college level with concentrations in music education, musical theater, and vocal performance. He recently moved to the Bay Area and is looking forward to teaching at Scherzo. He is a student focused teacher and the whole of his teaching is guided by each individual student—believing that it is essential for the individual student to have a personal voice in her or his own learning.

Flora Sun

Piano Teacher

Flora Sun has been playing piano since she was 7 and has loved it ever since. During high school, Ms. Sun was accepted into various piano programs including the California State Summer School of the Arts in Valencia, California, and the Brevard Music Festival in Brevard, North Carolina. Ms. Sun has also completed the Certificate of Merit exams, which demonstrates mastery in piano performance, technique, and theory. 

Ms. Sun graduated from UC Santa Barbara with a bachelor’s degree in Western Art Music Studies and a minor in Education in 2021, and at UC Santa Barbara she studied piano under the instruction of Professor Paul Berkowitz. For Ms. Sun’s senior project, she performed a senior recital consisting of pieces by W.A. Mozart, Claude Debussy, and Robert Schumann. 

Ms. Sun has a background in teaching piano to students of all ages in various settings, as she has taught group and private lessons, and she draws on these experiences to help shape her teaching style. No matter the age or skill level, all students need a teacher who will accommodate their learning style. As a result, Ms. Sun first tries to get a better understanding of her students and then figure out what teaching style they best respond to. Ms. Sun also believes that positive encouragement is essential to teaching piano as it plays a huge factor in whether a student will not only want to but also enjoy learning piano.

Erin Foreman

Piano Teacher

Bay Area native and resident Erin Foreman began his musical journey at age 10 playing Flute in Elementary and Middle school bands. After a brief musical break in high school, Erin began learning Piano and music theory independently. In 2015 he began private instruction at Contra Costa College studying Jazz Piano. Looking to expand his musical knowledge, Erin continued study at Contra Costa College participating in small vocal ensembles and receiving training in Classical Voice, Composition and Piano. In April 2018, Erin sang with the Contra Costa Singers in the Gotham SINGS! Collegiate Choral Showcase at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Aside from Erin’s passion for Piano and choral music, his area of focus is music composition.

Inspired by film composers John Williams and Hans Zimmer, Erin seeks to write music for film and video games. In 2018, Erin, alongside two other classmates were commissioned by the Contra Costa College Theater department to write and perform live music for an original production of the horror play Vengeance which later earned an invitation to KCACTF in Eugene Oregon. There, Erin and his classmates received the Regional Award for Achievement for best Sound design as well as the Don Child’s Award for Sound Design Collaboration.

Erin’s journey in Music Education began in 2017 where he took an internship teaching group music classes to grades K – 2 at Washington Elementary school in Richmond. He has since taught private piano lessons at the Hilltop Family YMCA in Richmond as well as offering independent private piano lessons.

Erin is currently attending California State University East Bay finishing his Bachelor’s of Arts in Music Education and believes that music is something we all have inside that needs to be shared with the world.

Zi Wang

Piano Teacher

Zi Wang is a DMA candidate in collaborative piano at the Michigan State University College of Music.

She is an active soloist and accompanist in East Lansing area, Michigan. She has performed plenty recitals across China, Europe and the United States. She was the first prize winner of the Golden Classical Awards International Competition in New York, the Grand Prize Virtuoso Competition in London and was invited to perform the winner concert at Carnegie Hall in New York and Royal Albert Hall in London. She has also received an invitation to Italy for the Music Program “Centro Studi Della Giacoma” where she collaborated with vocalists and presented chamber work. In 2018, she started to accompany for the Charlotte Public School student choir in Charlotte. She also traveled to Newark, the University of Delaware, as assistant pianist for “Master Players Festival & School”. During each summer, she taught in Ningxia University and Ningxia Arts School in China as piano instructor for solo performance and collaborative piano students. She is teaching private piano lesson especially for young kids in Miller Music Studio now.

She has held honor scholarship at Michigan State University. As an avid advocate for music in the community, she is also a member of Monocot Trio in East Lansing. This trio was invited to give performances throughout the schools, health care center and MSU community school of music. She also had chance to work with Shan Xi Symphony Orchestra and performed Shostakovich Piano Concerto no. 2 at Xi’an Concert Hall.

Zi began her piano studies at the age of six with famous pianist Xiyu Sheng in China. She attended the Xi’an Conservatory of Music, where she received her Bachelor Degree in Music Education. She received her Master of Music degree from Michigan State University as a scholarship student. She has also invited to join the Golden Key International Honor Society.

As a piano teacher, her varied background as both an educator and performer would be an asset to the students. Her undergraduate course work gave her a strong foundation in music pedagogy. Her Masters and Doctoral experiences had afforded her a robust knowledge of musicology and experience of cooperation. She is a two years old daughter’s mom now, so the “patient” is her obviously personality.

Evanthia (Evie) Moussouras

Piano Teacher

Evie Moussouras is a native of Athens,Greece. Since a very young age she showed a great interest in music, beginning her piano lessons at the age of four. She performed her first recital at the age of eight. Piano competitions followed, in which she won first prizes and distinctions at a national and international level. As a child prodigy she appeared on Greek television at the age of 14. She studied under the guidance of the renowned concert pianist and pedagogue Anastasios Pappas, receiving her Diploma in Piano Performance with highest distinctions from the Tiegerman Conservatory of Athens. 

Furthermore Evie got inspiration and artistic advice through masterclasses by pianists such as Elisso Virsaladze, Vladimir Krainev and Aldo Ciccolini. She is a passionate chamber musician and she has extensively collaborated with singers on and off stage. 

Along with the piano, Evie is also a Classical Literature graduate of the University of Athens. She has a 12 year old experience in teaching children and adults of all levels and ages, specializing in the development of piano virtuosity skills. She believes that Music is the best way to transmit feelings, to express the soul and evolve ourselves.


Evangeline Wong

Piano Teacher

Evangeline Wong began piano lessons at the age of 5 and continued on to receive her Master of Fine Arts in Piano Performance from the University of California, Irvine under the instruction of Dr. Lorna Griffitt. Ms. Wong has performed extensively in solo and chamber recitals, including performances at the Schlern International Music Festival in Völs am Schlern, Italy, Brevard Music Festival in Brevard, North Carolina, Summit Music Festival in Purchase, New York and in the televised “Sounds of Spring” Concert at the Irvine Civic Center in 2009. At the music festivals she studied with renowned faculty including Douglas Weeks (Converse College), Boris Slutsky (Peabody) and Pavel Nersessian (Moscow University). Her most notable master class performances include Menahem Pressler, John Perry, Gerald Robbins with the Rio Trio, Alan Rickman, Richard Cionco and Sandra Wright Shen. 

Currently Ms. Wong enjoys her career as a highly active music teacher, passionate about making a well-rounded music education accessible to students of all ages. Focusing on strengthening the student’s understanding of the fundamentals of music, Ms. Wong customizes her piano-lesson plans to each individual student so that lesson-time can be enjoyable and great musical learning can be cultivated. Her goal as an educator is to equip her students with the tools to understand and appreciate music even well past their piano lessons. 

Ms. Wong is a member of the Music Teachers National Association and her students have achieved high honors at the California Association of Professional Music Teachers Student Evaluation programs. Many of her students have participated and placed at the US Open Music Competitions. Ms. Wong also encourages and prepares her students to perform in recitals so they can develop their confidence on stage from an early age and learn the importance of sharing music they have been working so diligently on during their piano lesson and individual practice.  

Along with teaching piano lessons at Scherzo Music School in San Mateo, Ms. Wong plays frequently with Central Peninsula Church in Foster City for Sunday services and collaborates with local musicians for other musical engagements. 

Furong Gardner

Mezzo-Soprano – Voice Teacher

has over twenty years of experience as a performer with the Shanghai and Sichuan Opera Houses in China. She holds a Bachelor of Music from The Shanghai Conservatory and a Master of Music in Voice Performance from Boston Conservatory of Music. She has studied with Elisabeth Phinney at Boston Conservatory, with Richard Barrett of the Mannes College of Music in New York City, and with Xiao-Yan Zhou, Ren-Qing Zhang and Jing-Zu Bien at Shanghai Conservatory of Music in China.

Her operatic repertoire includes roles in Puccini’s Suor Angelica, Verdi’s Rigoletto, Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro and The Magic Flute, Bizet’s Carmen, Rossini’s L’Italiana in Algeri and The Barber of Seville, and Purcell’s Dido’s Lament. Other roles include alto solo in Verdi’s Requiem, Mozart’s Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, Weber’s Mass in G Major, Vivaldi’s Gloria, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and Vaughan Williams’s Hodie. She has also performed major operatic roles with the San Francisco Opera House.

She made her Carnegie Hall debut, performing the Alto solo in Handel’s Messiah, on September 11, 1999. She was also invited to China for the “New Year’s Concert 2000” performing at Shanghai Great Theater with the Shanghai Broadcasting Symphony Orchestra. She was a guest soloist with Brevard University of Florida Choir for the “European Concert Tour 2000” that went to Milano, Italy; Lugano, Switzerland; and Paris, France. She was also in Rui-Shi Zhou’s opera “Go for me to China” which made its performing debut in June 2001 at the Orpheum Theatre in Vancouver Canada.

In addition to performing, Ms. Gardner teaches Voice at South Shore Conservatory and Newton Chinese School. She also is a member of National Association of Teachers of Singing.

Abigail Strock

Voice & Piano Teacher

A native of northern California, Abigail Seeterlin discovered her love of music at a young age.  She has been singing and playing piano for as long as she can remember, and during middle school and high school she was accepted into numerous regional, state, and national honor choirs through the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA).   Abigail earned her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music in 2005, and began teaching privately soon after.  In 2015 she earned a Master of Music in Vocal Pedagogy from Holy Names University in Oakland, CA, where she studied voice with Eric Howe.  

Abigail Seeterlin has performed lead roles in operas and musicals with several community theater companies in Mendocino and Sonoma Counties, including Mendocino Chamber Opera, Gloriana Musical Theater, and Healdsburg’s Raven Players.  Her favorite roles include Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance and Cinderella in Into the Woods.  Abigail also frequently sings opera and choir vocals with the San Francisco orchestral indie rock band, The Family Crest, in live performances as well as recordings.  In her free time (when she’s not singing), Abigail loves cooking and baking, reading, and spending time outdoors.  

Mrs. Seeterlin has been working at Scherzo Music School since the Spring of 2012.  She teaches voice and piano lessons, and also assists with new student enrollment and curriculum development for group classes.  Abigail loves teaching because it allows her to share her passion for music with others, and to help them discover and deepen their own musical tastes and style.  She teaches many different styles of singing, from opera to pop, and works with students of all ages.

Heeryoung Park

Founder & Piano Teacher

Heeryoung Park is trained as a musician in South Korea from her early age and has been playing piano and Cello for more than 40 years. She has a diplome in Cello from Maastricht Conservatorium in Netherland and lived in Cologne for many years.
She spent some time in Paris as well and consequently she is richly nutured by European music and art culture.
She worked in Changwon City Orchestra for many years as a first cellist and taught in various universities in South Korea. At the same time she was a member of a chamber ensemble and traveled to France, Swiss and Japan to give concerts.
Heeryoung has been giving lessons for more than 30 years and she knows how to teach music to those who are either beginner or advanced. She can teach both piano and Cello with passion and understanding heart that students can feel at home during lessons.
Now she is living in Belmont with her family and plays music in various occasions to serve people

Elliot Mallard

Cello Teacher

A native of Baltimore, Maryland, cellist Elliot Mallard enjoys an active career as a chamber musician, soloist, and diverse recording artist. A graduate of the Juilliard School, he trained under David Soyer, Timothy Eddy, and Darrett Adkins as a Bidù Sayão scholar.

Concert appearances include performances as soloist with the UMBC orchestra, Peabody Sinfonietta, The National Music Festival Orchestra, and Ensemble Du Monde. In addition to his classical activities, he in demand as a recording artist and performer of popular music, touring with world renowned artists such as Emmy-Award winning violinist, Damian Escobar.

In 2018, Elliot Mallard received a Master of Music Degree in Cello Performance from Temple University under the tutelage of Jeffrey Solow.

Pauline Kempf

Violin Teacher

Dr. Pauline Kempf is a certified Suzuki violin teacher and has over ten years of individual and group teaching experience.
Within her music studio, Pauline creates a safe and supportive environment that helps her students learn the violin and improve their musical skills. Pauline is committed to create a unique learning plan for each of her students and to give them appropriate advice which help them achieve their goals as young musicians.
Students enrolled in her studio have been admitted to the Peninsula Youth Orchestra (PYO) and the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra (CYSO). She previously taught at the DePaul University Community Music Division in Chicago.

A first-prize winner in international competitions in Germany and Italy, Pauline has been a member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and performed as assistant concertmaster and section violinist in various Chicago-based symphony orchestras. She has performed in numerous chamber music collaborations brought her to perform throughout Europe, the United States and in South America.

Pauline received her Doctor of Music in Violin Performance from Northwestern University. She earned a Bachelor of Music degree from the Music University of Geneva and a Master of Music degree in both violin performance and chamber music from the Music University of Vienna.

Michelle Hsu

Violin & Viola Teacher

Russ Bartoli

Cello Teacher

Michele Gardiner

Violin and Viola Teacher

Marcus Phillips

Oboe, Clarinet, & Saxophone Teacher

Woodwind specialist Marcus Phillips is a professional freelance Oboe/English Hornist in the Greater Bay Area with an extensive background in orchestral performance, chamber music, and teaching. Learning multiple woodwind instruments at an early age, Marcus has established a solid foundation on many instruments and enjoys teaching students the joys of learning and mastering their new instrument.

Originally hailing from South Florida; Marcus received his Master of Music degree from The San Francisco Conservatory of Music (studying under Russ DeLuna of the San Francisco Symphony) and a Bachelor of Music degree in Oboe Performance from Georgia State University.

Marcus has always enjoyed teaching and sharing music with others. After finishing his studies, Marcus began working with the San Francisco Symphony’s youth outreach program, “Adventure in Music” for multiple years, where he was able to perform, teach, and inspire hundreds of young students to pick up an instrument and start their journey of making music. Marcus truly believes that you can never be too young nor too old to pick up any instrument. Learning an instrument is like gaining a key to a special language where you are able to tell stories unlike any other medium of art. Studying music has also been proven to increase your ability to focus, improve academic skills, helps boost self-esteem, and help relieve stress/anxiety.

Marcus has had the honor of performing with/held positions in many Bay Area ensembles including: the Silicon Valley Philharmonic, Napa Valley Ballet, Stockton Symphony, Modesto’s Townsend Opera house, South Bay Symphony Orchestra, New Millennium Chamber Orchestra, Merced Symphony, Bay Area Symphony Orchestra, Symphony Parnassus, Awesöme Orchestra Collective, as well as many orchestras throughout Georgia and Houston. He has also participated in master classes and music festivals with notable artist: William Bennett, Phil Ross, Eugene Izotov, Jonathan Fischer, Nancy Ambrose King, James Sullivan, Mark Ostoich, Alex Klein, Elizabeth Koch, Frank Rosenwein, and many other well established musicians.

Alexandra Perdew

Harp Teacher

Alexandra Perdew has performed extensively throughout North America and Europe as a soloist, with small ensembles, and as an orchestral harpist. She has appeared in several television shows such as General Hospital as well as performing with Hollywood scoring orchestras. She has also played with many shows including: Disney Fantasia Live, Johnny Mathis, The Celtic Woman, The Three Tenors, Oklahoma, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, The Fantastiks, and South Pacific. Her playing,”Is filled with care, artistry, and mature interpretation. She is a talented musician, well rounded in her knowledge of music, and has a healthy curiosity in areas beyond music.” (Donald Chen, conductor) “Everything I heard was sensitive, artistic, and had beautiful intonation.” (Richard Ferrin, violist emeritus, Chicago Symphony Orchestra).

In addition to playing, Alexandra has also served as the Ambassador for Salvi Harps in North America for the past fourteen years. She has given numerous masterclasses and workshops in addition to performing at National Harp Conferences and National and Regional music showcases. In her role as National Sales Manager, she helped harpists from all over the world find their dream harps and learn to care for them.

Alexandra has been teaching harp around the country for twenty years through her personal harp studio and the Salvi Showroom in Southern California as well as at Stanford University. She has taught at The Philadelphia International Music Festival. She has also worked as a coach for the several television/movie sets, the Orange County Youth Symphony, Asia America Youth Symphony, and Palos Verdes Regional Symphony Orchestra. She has served as a workshop developer and a competition judge.

A strong supporter of the American Harp Society, she served as the Executive Vice President for the Board of the American Harp Society Foundation. Alexandra was also a Co-Director of the distinguished Anne Adams Awards and Foundation Awards National Harp Competitions where she served as a main Director for twenty years.

Alexandra received her Bachelor’s Degree from DePauw University, majoring in Music and Anthropology. She also completed premedical studies at DePauw after spending her Junior year studying harp at the University of Oregon. She received her Master’s Degree from Roosevelt University (Chicago College of Performing Arts) in Orchestral Performance Studies, and did post graduate work at the University of Southern California in Harp Performance and Anthropology.


Let's have a chat

Have a question?