Notable Neighbors: Jeet Bhatnagar & Sarah Reed

I know we have all missed being in the hallways at NMS this year, hearing the different types of music pouring out of the studios as well as the invigorating hallway conversations that ensue! Being part of a community that embraces teaching all styles of music is important to me because each student has a unique set of interests and learning styles. We are fortunate to live in an age where we have access to all styles of music at our fingertips, and a skilled faculty with diverse experiences to deliver a student-centered experience based on each student’s interests. Here are some examples in action!

Mary Bloom

Director of Music Education

Thirteen-year-old Jeet Bhatnagar knows how to rock.

Jeet came to NMS two years ago, when he began learning the electric guitar with Joe Casillo.

“I like how my teacher, Joe, is teaching me at NMS,” said Jeet.

“Before coming to NMS, I tried to learn electric guitar at another school, however those teachers did not teach me nearly as well as Joe. Joe taught me how to read tab music which is really helpful. And, with Joe as my teacher, I think I have shown significant improvement in my electric guitar playing.”

Joe agrees.

“Jeet works hard at guitar. He listens to what I have to say and watches my examples intently. I get to watch his growth as a musician. He thanks me for helping him and I thank him for taking that help. We laugh a lot together along the way. Who could ask for a better student?”

With a smile, Joe added, “And he also sings a really mean AC/DC.”

Jeet has enjoyed bringing rock music to our virtual recitals over the past year.

“I have performed in two virtual recitals so far and the first one was my favorite. I played Detroit Rock City by KISS that day and that will always remain one of my favorite NMS memories.”

Jeet credits NMS with teaching him the importance of perseverance (and of practicing slowly!).

“I have learned perseverance at NMS because the many songs or riffs that I have attempted to play, I wasn’t able to do very quickly. But, by playing slowly and working my way through those songs, my guitar playing has gotten better and I can learn riffs faster now.”

Here, Jeet plays three guitar riffs he’s worked on over the past year, all from Iron Man by Black Sabbath

While the past year of virtual learning has brought challenges, Jeet is grateful that he and his sister, Isha, a voice student of Cynthia Eggers, have been able to continue their musical studies.

“The move to distance learning for NMS has been seamless, classes are still going well, and I like how NMS has incorporated performances and classes during this pandemic,” said Jeet.

We are immensely proud of the hard work of all of our students over the past year, and, like Jeet, we have all learned a lot about perseverance. Rock on!

Voice faculty member Sarah Reed loves to help people make music together.

“Nothing gives me greater joy than to bring together people in singing,” said Sarah.

At NMS, Sarah conducts the Audubon Voices: Children’s Chorus and the NMS Chorus. She also teaches individual voice lessons.

Here, Sarah introduces herself to the NMS community:

Want to improve your singing technique? In this video, Sarah teaches a fun and informative mini-lesson on how to find your head voice: