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 Instructor, Music Production
B.A., Yale University
Jongnic Bontemps, aka “JB”, is a classically trained composer with roots in the church and jazz world as a pianist. Read his Oxy Story profile.
Non-Tenure Track Instructor, Music
B.M., The Curtis Institute; M.M., The Juilliard School; P.h.D., USC ( in progress)
Stephen Cabell teaches courses in music theory.
Director of the Occidental Jazz Ensemble; Non-Tenure Track Instructor
B.Mus., Studio Music and Jazz, University of Miami; MM, Jazz Studies, De Paul University
Shawn Costantino is well into his second decade as the Director of Jazz Studies and Instrumental Music at Harvard-Westlake School in Los Angeles, where he oversees a diverse curriculum of 3 big bands...
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
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 teaches courses in Music History and Cultural Studies.
Director of Instrumental Activities
B.M., Northwestern University; M.M., University of Michigan at Ann Arbor
Chris Kim is the Director of Instrumental Activities 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.
Classical Double Bass Instructor
As a teacher, orchestral musician, soloist and proponent of contemporary music, Ted Botsford enjoys a varied career, exploring the sonorities of the double bass and pushing back against its...
Violist Michael Larco joined the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 2012 after seven seasons as Assistant Principal in the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. A frequent participant of the LA Phil’s...
Benjamin H. Culley Teaching Artist in Residence, Violin
Violinist Lyndon Johnston Taylor is the principal second violinist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and an artist faculty member at Occidental College. His musical career began at the age of...
Originally from Hawai‘i, Jason Arimoto, Ph. D., is a Los Angeles-based ‘ukulele creative with a professional background in ‘ukulele performance, education, and retail. Arimoto performs and...
Woodwinds / Brass Instructors
Rachel Mellis enjoys a multi-faceted career as an orchestral, chamber, solo, and recording artist. She performs regularly throughout the U.S. and has toured internationally in Europe and Asia. ...