Jen’s Music School Footscray has recently become a collective rather than a formal school as Jen has relocated to Myrniong. Although Jen is no longer in the Footscray area, the teachers are still going strong! Please get in touch with them direct, you can find their contact info next to their bios below.
Belinda Sofra – vocals, performance and keys
M: 0418 502095
Lessons in Footscray (wed, thu, fri) and Sunshine (Mon)
Belinda Sofra’s technical mastery and passion for vocal wellbeing is the basis of her teaching ethos. Through dedicated and continuing study, she has developed an holistic approach to vocal mechanics.
Belinda currently teaches at a number of industry focused schools and has experience preparing and taking VCE students through there final exams with successful results. Alongside private and institutional teaching, Belinda maintains her strong skills as a songwriter and performer. With a Bachelor of Applied Music from Box Hill Tafe and continued study of voice mechanics, Belinda has extensive experience with all styles of contemporary vocal performance.
Jake Donohue – electric and acoustic guitar
M: 0411 384112 E: firstname.lastname@example.org
Lessons in Footscray (Mon, Fri and Sat)
Jake started playing at 13, falling for the sounds of Zeppelin, Hendrix and Tool. He formed a heavy rock band and started gigging around Northern NSW, and at 15 started teaching guitar to other kids at lunch times.
Jake left school to study music at the Northern Rivers Conservatorium where he got introduced to the likes of jazz, classical and world music. In 2010 Jake left Byron Bay to continue his musical journey in Melbourne.
He performs both as a solo artist and in bands, ranging in styles from jazz, blues, classical, folk, celtic, spanish and Gypsy, to funk, rock, metal and punk. Jake is a patient, and passionate teacher, and has taught people both young and old, and levels from beginner to seasoned musician.
Frank Zhang – piano
M: 0467 093902
Lessons in Footscray (Mon, Sat) – fluent in Mandarin
Growing up in New Zealand, Frank started learning the piano when he was eight years old. He received formal classical piano training as well as music theory from his former teacher Jennifer Scarlet. He achieved grade eight piano performance with distinction and started teaching piano while in high school. He has a wealth of experience working with children as well as adult students, giving fun and engaging lessons.
Frank has performed in numerous musicals as the leading pianist, he is engaged in various stage productions at Melbourne University. He also performs in solo recitals with a particular specialty for the music of F. Chopin. He is comfortable at applying his virtuosic skill to all types of music genres.
Frank is currently studying a Masters of Physics degree at the University of Melbourne and he wishes to spread his passion for music to his students.
Max Tinkle – blues & jazz harmonica, sax, clarinet & piano
M: 0418 587687
Lessons in Footscray (Tuesdays) and Carnegie .
Max’s musical career started with Clarinet at age 13, later adding Harmonica, Saxophone and Piano. His first band experience was playing Dixieland Jazz, great grounding for understanding improvisation [jamming] and chord changes. Jazz & Blues Music became his specialties then he met Harmonica Legend Sonny Terry in Melbourne. While Max was playing in the support band, Sonny spent some precious time with him happily demonstrating his ‘Blues Harp’ technique between shows. Max was ‘Hooked for Life’.
His musical journey continued through various musical styles, from Wedding Bands to jamming on Harp and Tenor Sax with Bluesman Dutch Tilders plus Bob Sedergreen’s ‘Blues on the Boil’ and also playing in various jazz, funk and soul bands around Melbourne plus appearing at country and interstate festivals. Recently he has featured with ‘Bop Deluxe’, ‘The Pearly Shells’ and the Matt Dwyer Band.
As a teacher and performer Max understands that newcomers want to have fun while playing and making that music part of their lives as soon as they can without getting too bogged down in theory. He’s developed a learning method that makes this happen in a few easy sessions and has also developed a quick, simple way to learn how to Improvise / Jam. Any age group fits in with his teaching method. From mature folks to young players starting out. Contact Max on 0418 587 687 – 7 days a week. Or Email Jazz@Ozonline.com.
Evan Sillence – electric and acoustic guitar, bass, drums & ukulele
M: 0412 214862
Lessons in Yarraville from his home studio.
Evan Sillence has been playing guitar in bands in his various home towns in QLD and NSW since he was 13. Moving to Melbourne to study Jazz Guitar at NMIT, Fairfield where he achieved an Advanced Diploma of Music Performance, he learnt under some guitar greats such as Jack Pantazis and Glenn Cannon.
Moving around a lot meant he became accustomed to playing a large variety styles. So whether you want to learn Jazz, Pop, Soul, Metal, Psychedelic Rock, Folk or Blues, Evan will be able to push you towards your goals in performance and expand your theoretical knowledge of music, no matter what your age or level of ability.
Evan currently plays gigs and concerts around Melbourne in his various bands and teaches Guitar and Keyboard at St Kevin’s, St Bernard’s, Preston West and North Fitzroy Primary Schools, as well as Jen’s Music School.