The TJ Music Academy is an after-school program that offers private music instruction to the youth and adults of Joplin and the surrounding area. We offer lessons in strings, voice, woodwinds, and guitar that take place in our lovely facilities with our experienced faculty. Lessons rates are $44 per hour, $33 for a 45-minute, and $22 for a 30-minute lesson. Lessons are scheduled after school with the private instructor based on his or her availability. We offer many performance opportunities including recitals and music festivals, and we encourage a strong work ethic and a passion for music.
Registration is now open for the Fall Session of music lessons through the Academy. Once signed up, you and the instructor will work out the scheduling for those lessons as the time approaches.
Rebecca Cutler-Metzger (Academy director) holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Violin Performance from Pittsburg State University and a Master of Music degree in Violin Performance and Orchestral Conducting from Illinois State University. She has been a private violin and viola instructor for more than 20 years and absolutely loves teaching children and adults of all ages and stages of life. Ms. Cutler-Metzger previously taught at Missouri Southern State University where she directed the Suzuki Violin Academy and taught applied strings and string techniques, but she has happily been at Thomas Jefferson since 2012 teaching LS/MS/US Strings and 3rd/4th grade general music. Ms. Cutler-Metzger also performs with the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas in Fayetteville as well as other regional orchestras and is also trained in the Suzuki Violin Method through Level 3. When not teaching or playing the violin, she can likely be found at the gym lifting weights, teaching yoga for kids, doing CrossFit with her husband, or at home playing with their 5 cats.
“Making Music Fun” is Miss Jana’s motto. Jana studied piano for 13 years with Joplin’s best and continued her education with a Julliard graduate during her years at MSSC. Jana loves working with children and has devoted over 35 years to teaching piano. She keeps students motivated with recitals, festivals, competitions and music contests. Many of her students have earned “Honorable, “1” and “Winner” ratings at local, state and national levels. Jana is an active member of JPTA, MMTA, MTNA, MFMC and NFMC. Jana would love to share her piano knowledge with your child so they too can learn to love music in their own special way.
Mariah Murphy began studying violin at three years old in Webb City, Missouri. A few years later, she started working with Chiafei Lin (Acting Assistant Concertmaster of the Kansas City Symphony) as a part of the Heartland Music Academy in Kansas City, Missouri, until she graduated high school. From there, she received her bachelors in violin performance from Indiana University’s Jacob’s School of Music, under the tutelage of Grigory Kalinovsky. While there she had the opportunity to study musical pedagogy from Brenda Brenner and Mimi Zweig, which sparked her love for teaching violin to others. Ms. Murphy joined the Thomas Jefferson Music Academy faculty in 2022. She also enjoys teaching vocal lessons from her home and creating music covers and music videos in her spare time.
Dylan Gasche came to TJ in 2023 and teaches private lessons for all brass instruments. He obtained a Bachelor of Music degree in Instrumental Performance with an emphasis in low brass studies from Missouri Southern State University in the Spring of 2022. He also holds certificates in jazz studies, small ensemble performance, and conducting. During his time at MSSU, he held numerous leadership roles such as section leader, instrument and equipment manager, and Drum Major for the Lion Pride Marching Band (2018-2021). Mr. Gasche also works as a salesmen and apprenticing repair technician for Ernie Williamson Music.