Meet Our instructors
Jordan Hudson - Guitar
Teaching since: 2002
Education: University of North Texas
Jordan Hudson has been teaching guitar at Memorial Music since 2002. He studied music theory at the University of North Texas and has been playing guitar for over 20 years. Jordan has played in local bands for the past 10 years and his own rock/blues band, Buffalo Bayou has several recordings to their credit on their album released in 2010, featuring original music that he composed and collaborated on.
He is proficient in a number of styles including rock, blues, pop, jazz, country, folk, finger-style, and contemporary praise and worship. His popularity as a teacher is tremendous, due to his exceptional ability to communicate and demonstrate musical concepts and techniques, instructing and tailoring the lessons for the individual’s needs and goals. Whether you want to learn specific songs, learn to perform, music theory, composition, site reading or acquire a certain style, Jordan is an excellent teacher and mentor of students of all ages and all levels of playing.
James Napier - Piano, Guitar
Teaching since: 1996
Education: University of Houston
James fluently plays the piano and the guitar. Well-versed in a variety of styles on the guitar and piano, he is currently performing classical guitar programs at various venues. Also his rock/blues band, Kindred Spirits recently released a new CD, featuring all original works on acoustic and electric guitar. They are gigging around town and rocking their audiences with great music and entertainment. James has several CD’s to his credit and continues to perform and work in the studio to write and record new music.
He teaches guitar for all ages and all levels of playing from beginner to advanced; styles include rock guitar, blues guitar, jazz guitar, classical guitar, country guitar, gospel guitar, contemporary Christian guitar, and finger-style acoustic guitar. Guitar classes include a combination of guitar theory, guitar technique, guitar reading, guitar composition, and performing with the guitar. James is a very popular teacher and has influenced many aspiring musicians through the years with his unique style of mentoring.
Bill Allison - Guitar, Banjo, Harmonica
Teaching since: 2005
Education: North Texas University
Bill Allison, a professional musician since 1986 and a graduate of North Texas University teaches guitar, bass, banjo and harmonica. He began his teaching career at Houston’s House of Guitars, where he taught until 2005 when he began teaching at Memorial Music. In addition to teaching, Bill has collaborated with many professional bands and musicians, appearing as a guest artist and composing music for filmed performances of well known bands - (see youtube videos: “Sonny Boy Terry 95“ with Bill as a featured guitarist and “Sonny Boy Terry at The Artery” where Bill is the bassist).
Bill is also featured guitarist and co-writer on several tracks of the Sonny Boy Terry CD: Breakfast Dance. He appeared in the book Texas Blues by Alan Govenar. Bill is also a featured guitarist on the soundtrack for the upcoming film Double Bayou by Heather Kolb, who also directed the documentary film Third Ward Blues. He is fluent in several musical styles including rock, blues, slide, country, bluegrass, gospel, contemporary praise and worship, acoustic finger-style, classical and flamenco. His teaching emphasizes a strong foundation encompassing technique, theory, reading, ear training and the fundamentals of performing. He brings his great talent and vast experience to the classroom and is a well-qualified mentor of students aspiring to learn all they can about playing and performance.
Gabe Bravo - Mandolin, Drum
Teaching since: 2010
Education: University of Houston
Gabe Bravo, a veteran of the local underground music scene, got his start at music singing for his church and a local boys choir. Gabe is a multi-instrumentalist, playing guitar, drums, bass guitar, mandolin, various brass instruments, and ukulele. His accolades include being nominated individually and with his various bands for 9 Houston Press Music Awards, winning Best Rock in 2012, and Best Drummer in 2012 and 2013.
Ernesto Vega - Saxophone, Clarinet, Flute
Teaching since: 2014
Education: Higher Institute of Art, La Havana Cuba
Ernesto Vega is a graduate of the Higher Institute of Art, La Havana Cuba, Bachelor of Music – 2005. He also attended The Music Conservatory “Jose M. Ochoa” Holguin, Cuba. He is an exceptional musician and composer of various works on clarinet, flute and saxophone. Ernesto performs regularly with the well known jazz musician, Chucho Valdez. His recently released CD – Venir al Mundo is a masterpiece that showcases his great musical talents and versatility on the woodwind instruments. Ernesto is currently collaborating with Joe Sample and is awaiting the release of yet another album. He will be performing much of this music at venues across the United States.
He formed The Ernesto Vega Quintet in 2011 and was a 2010 Young Cuban Master, Cuba - France. He has performed with bands and orchestras worldwide and been a featured performer in many notable events and festivals such as the Joe Sample Orchestra – Houston, Texas, Havana Jazz Collective, The Trinity Jazz Festival – Houston, Texas, Jazz in Marciac – France, North Sea Jazz Festival – Rotterdam, Holland, and Lausanne Jazz Festival in Switzerland. His accomplishments are too numerous to list and he continues to write, record and perform what he does so very well. Here in Houston Ernesto teaches the piano, teaches saxophone, and teaches clarinet. He offers instruction and mentoring of students from beginner – age 5 to adult and all levels of proficiency.
Lendys DÃaz - Piano, Voice, Music Theory
Teaching since: 2010
Education: University of Arts, Cuba
Ms. Lendys was born in Cuba and began her musical studies at the age of 7 in vocational schools of art. She studied for 15 years in the specialties of piano, voice and music theory. Lendys has a degree in Music Education, and also a Bachelor’s Degree in Musicology from the University of Arts. Her love for education started very early with teaching neighborhood kids, and she eventually became a professor in the subjects of theory and piano at the Nola Saigh Sainz School of Music in Ciego de Avila, Cuba. Since then, she’s always had a passion for teaching and helping others develop their skills. Lendys started teaching music lessons in 2010 with goals to make every lesson fun, to let the students explore music, and to give them great experiences through music. She achieves this by adapting each lesson in accordance with the student’s interests, skill level, personality, and learning style. In Houston, Lendys teaches piano, voice, and theory to children, teenagers and adults in both the public and private sectors for 8 years in Cuba and the United States. In her music classes here at Memorial Music Lendys works to accommodate all levels of musicians. Ms. Lendys is fluent in English and Spanish!
Irena Mitova - Piano
Teaching since: 2010
Education: Leipzig Conservatory in Germany, University of Houston
Irena Mitova began her musical studies with piano music at the age of five in her native country of Bulgaria. In 2001 she was accepted at the Leipzig Conservatory in Germany where she studied Music Theory and Piano for six years. Just recently, in June of 2018, she earned her second music degree in Composition under the supervision of Dr. David Ashley White, Rob Smith and Marcus Maroney at the University of Houston.
During her studies in Texas she wrote for different music ensembles, prepared recitals, and participated in numerous competitions. In 2017 she won second place in the Sarofim Composition Contest with one of her string quartets while playing the piano. While at the Moores School of Music, she also joined the piano studios of some of Houston's most distinguished piano professors and pedagogies.
Mrs. Irena teaches piano technique, teaches classical piano repertoire, teaches piano composition, and teaches piano music theory. As a piano teacher with the benefit of more than ten years of experience, she is particularly dedicated to providing her piano students with different aspects of piano performance, music appreciation, and general knowledge of musical forms and classical piano repertoire. Last but not least, Irena enjoys teaching piano students of all ages and different backgrounds.
Jose Luis Garza - Violin, Viola
Teaching since: 1998
Education: University of Houston
Born in 1980 in Houston, Jose Luis Garza began his study of the violin at age eleven and received numerous awards and privileges throughout his primary school years. A recipient of twenty-four gold medals, three at the state level, in U.I.L. solo and ensemble competition, Garza has performed various solo, ensemble and orchestral repertoire. He performed with the Texas All-State Orchestra (1997) and the National High School Honors Orchestra (1998). During this time, he was privately taught violin by Jolene Armstrong and was a member of the Greater Houston Youth Orchestra for three and a half years. He finished his elementary studies as soloist with his high school orchestra, of which he was a concertmaster of both school and district for two years. Following these events, Garza continued his musical studies at the University of Houston, studying violin under Albert Muenzer and viola under Lawrence Wheeler. Jose Garza grew in demand as a teacher and a performer. Playing both the violin and viola presented expanded opportunities for him in the arts. Garza began performing works of contemporary composers with numerous chamber ensembles in the Houston area and joined the faculty of Multicultural Education and Counseling through the Arts (MECA). Garza helped at-risk MECA students reach goals in classical and cultural music that they might otherwise find unattainable. His students have gained improved musical and technical ability while acquiring a solid foundation of music theory, thus resulting in acceptance to schools such as the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, the University of Houston, and to the summer conservatory American Festival for the Arts. At this conservatory, Garza gave performances, assisted in coaching chamber ensembles and instructed violin sectionals to the AFA orchestra.
Over the last two decades, Garza has been an instructor of violin and Mariachi Curriculum Coordinator for MECA, assistant administrator and writer for the Latin American Media Project for the Foundation of Modern Music, violinist with the Galveston Symphony Orchestra, Symphony of Southeast Texas, and Texas Medical Center Orchestra, and a freelance performer. His final studies include violin under internationally recognized artist and Rice University professor Kenneth Goldsmith and musical composition under the late Dallas Symphony Composer-In-Residence and piano pedagogue Robert Avalon.
Garza has taught hundreds of private students in the Houston area to date and continues to teach and collaborate privately.