On Special Appointment
Director of the Afro-Cuban Drumming Ensemble, Non-Tenure Track Instructor, Music
Joe Addington teaches applied Afro-Cuban drumming lessons, and leads the Afro-Cuban Drumming Ensembles at Occidental College.
Non-Tenure Track Assistant Professor, Music
B.M., The Curtis Institute; M.M., The Juilliard School; P.h.D., USC
Stephen Cabell teaches courses in music theory.
Andrew G. Mellon Professor of the Practice in Music
B.A., UC Santa Cruz; M.F.A., California Institute of the Arts
Max Foreman is a composer, producer, and audio engineer from San Francisco, CA.
Johnston-Fix Professor of the Practice in Songwriting
A.B., Occidental College; M.A., UCLA
Ramona Gonzalez teaches courses in songwriting and music business.
Director of Advising; Non-Tenure Track Assistant Professor
B.A., Lawrence University; M.A., Ph.D., UC Santa Barbara
Edmond Johnson is Director of Academic Advising and Core Program Coordinator. He also oversees the LA Encounters Program and teaches courses in Music History and Cultural Studies.
Choi Family Director of Instrumental Music
B.M., Northwestern University; M.M., University of Michigan at Ann Arbor
Chris Kim is the Choi Family Director of Instrumental Music and conductor of the Occidental Symphony Orchestra. Read his Oxy Story profile.
Director of Choral and Vocal Activities
B.Mus., CSU Fullerton; M.M. University of Nevada, Reno
Desiree La Vertu is a highly accomplished conductor, soloist, and voice teacher in the greater Los Angeles area.
Non-Tenure Track Assistant Professor, Music; Piano Instructor
B.A., University of California, Santa Barbara; M.F.A., UCLA
Dina has been teaching piano since she graduated from high school in Ohio, where she studied privately with Robert Howat at Wittenberg University.
Non-Tenure Track Professor, Music
B.A., M.A., Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles
Pillich teaches courses in the music of the world and jazz.
Non-Tenure Track Assistant Professor, Music; Director of the Jazz Ensemble
B.A., USC; M.F.A., California Institute of the Arts
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Jonathan is an active member of the music industry as a bassist, composer and educator. He is a graduate of the USC Thornton School of Music, where he studied with classical bass virtuoso Nico Abondolo and jazz legend John Clayton. He holds a Master’s Degree from Cal Arts and is also on faculty at Pasadena City College. As a touring and studio musician, he has had the privilege of working with an array of musical artists, including David Foster, Khalid, Toni Braxton, Joe LaBarbera, Steve Lehman, Snuffy Walden, and the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra. He has been featured on numerous recording projects for albums, television, and film. These include Beyoncé’s The Gift, Katharine McPhee’s PBS Soundstage Special, The American Music Awards, and scoring sessions for shows like "The Night Of" (HBO), "Mrs. America" (HULU), "Dear White People" (Netfilx), and many more. Jonathan is passionate about education and engaging with his students. He is excited to lead Occidental’s ensembles in many creative endeavors.
Woodwinds / Brass Instructors