Patrick Lahan, piano
BM Piano Performance + Music Theory, Florida State University
MM Piano Performance, University of Maryland
DMA Piano Performance and Pedagogy, University of Oklahoma
Dr. Patrick Lahan began Suzuki piano lessons at the age of five. Nearly thirty years later, Dr. Lahan has a doctorate in piano pedagogy and performance from one of the country’s top programs. In between those milestones, Dr. Lahan has amassed a lifetime of varied musical experiences. From learning to improvise in a middle school jazz band, to singing in a choir, to becoming a member of Florida State’s Balinese gamelan ensemble, to playing lead-guitar in an Oasis tribute band with his roommate, to attending at least three dozen jam-band shows as an undergraduate, to performing a prelude and fugue for one of the world’s top Bach interpreters, Dr. Lahan has had a career that reflects his lifelong passion for music.
Dr. Lahan’s musical training has been of the highest quality. He holds Bachelor of Music degrees in piano performance and music theory from Florida State University. He has a Master of Music degree in piano performance from the University of Maryland. In 2016, Dr. Lahan received a Doctorate of Musical Arts degree in piano pedagogy and performance from the University of Oklahoma. Dr. Lahan has taught college courses in aural skills, music theory, group piano and keyboard literature. Dr. Lahan is currently undergoing training as a Suzuki instructor to further develop his years of private teaching experience.
Dr. Lahan particularly enjoys performing the music of twentieth century composers and also that of J.S. Bach. Two highlights of his performing career include masterclass performances of Alban Berg’s Piano Sonata, Op. 1 for Dmitry Rachmanov and Bach’s Prelude and Fugue in A-minor (WTC. II) for Simone Dinnerstein. Dr. Lahan has recently given presentations to music teachers on topics related to teaching J.S. Bach’s Two-Part Inventions, Bartok’s Mikrokosmos, and Seymour Bernstein’s Birds. Dr. Lahan’s interests as a piano teacher include the development of aural skills in beginning piano students, the connection between art history and musical style, teaching improvisation, and the efficacy of “deliberate practice.”
Sarah York Lahan, violin
BM/BME + MM Violin Performance, University of Maryland
Sarah Lahan maintains an active teaching schedule as a strings specialist for Howard County Public Schools and the co-director and violin teacher for the Lahan Music Studio. She has previously taught Suzuki lessons and group classes at Norman School for Strings in Oklahoma, coached chamber music with the Baltimore Symphony Youth Orchestra program, and taught violin lessons in private schools around the DC metro area with the Music Kids program.
In her years teaching violin at the University of Maryland's Center for Young Children, Mrs. Lahan became fascinated by the role music instruction plays in early childhood development and has trained with Ronda Cole and Edmund Sprunger in the Suzuki method, designed specifically for teaching young children. She considers herself lucky to have her mother, a beloved preschool teacher, as a model of the patience, humor, and nurturing demeanor required for early childhood teaching.
Among Mrs. Lahan's favorite experiences as a performer have been attending the National Orchestral Institute, playing in a winner's recital for the Crescendo Competition at Carnegie's Weill Recital Hall, and performing a fully memorized and choreographed interpretation of Copland's Appalachian Spring with the University of Maryland Symphony Orchestra.
Mrs. Lahan is grateful to her teachers, Dr. Gerald Fischbach, Dr. James Stern, Elizabeth Faidley, and Debbie Barron, for giving her a solid foundation in technique, artistry, and pedagogy, and for instilling a lifelong love for violin playing.
Mrs. Lahan is a member of the American String Teachers Association, the Suzuki Association of the Americas, and the National Association for Music Educators.