Meet Our Teachers!
Andrew Chadwick became interested in music at a young age, learning to play the piano at age 4. He is an ASCAP International Writer and Publisher, as well as a 2013 ASCAP Awards Winner in TV and Film Score. He has studied with multiple world renowned Jazz artists, including Christina Corea and Jeff Coffin. In addition to his 12+ years teaching Music education in Torrington, Andrew has also taught Music in Cameroon Africa, and was an Audio Engineer for all DayJam's national campuses. Look for his music on Pandora! He currently gigs with the jazz band JINQS.
Tricia Chadwick is a Certified English Teacher with a Master of Arts in Teaching from Central Connecticut State University. She has experience teaching children of all ages, from Pre-K to High School. She has taught at Kids Clubhouse, CJR, Bristol Central, Cromwell High School, Torrington Middle School, and Torrington High School. Her varied work experience in daycare, healthcare, politics, and at a school for students with special educational needs enables her to plan engaging lessons that hold the student’s interest. Tricia is an avid reader and has a love of learning that she shares with her students.
Sarah Galgano is an experienced music instructor to all ages, with a special love for flute and saxophone. She has been playing flute for 16+ years and studied Flute Performance at the University of Connecticut. Sarah also attended Indiana University for art, where she studied saxophone with now Musician First Class Dana Booher of the Navy Band. Sarah has maintained an active teaching schedule and developed philosophies to meet the needs of students at every stage of life. She currently plays with the jazz band JINQS.
Jeff Boratko is a multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, songwriter and composer with a music degree from Central Connecticut State University, where he studied composition and bassoon performance. Jeff was born into a musical family and was taught piano and voice by his father. Since his childhood he has been an active member of the Torrington based Joyful Noise Inc. and appears on their CD Chakana Angelicus as a singer and bassoonist. Jeff writes and performs music in a wide variety of styles, and worked with actor and director Thom Delventhal on songs and musical scoring for numerous theatrical productions. He performs regularly around the state with a number of bands, including the jazz band JINQS.
Carla Stoddard realized music had to be a part of her life at a young age while learning flute and violin in middle school. She went through high school with this in mind, taking part in band on tenor saxophone, orchestra and chamber players on violin and occasionally cello, and was a section leader in the school’s chamber choir. Carla went on to study violin and graduated from Central Connecticut State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music. Since then she has enjoyed being a freelance musician. Recently she played violin in the pit orchestra for CCSU’s production of Into The Woods. Along with classical, Carla has experience playing rock, folk, jazz, and bluegrass styles.
Chris Valerio has been a music educator since 1969. He began his teaching career giving private lessons and has taught in the Brookfield, Ridgefield, Bethel, and Torrington School Systems. Chris has studied under Vincent Penzerella of the NY Philharmonic, Robert Nagel and Allan Dean of the NY Brass Quintet, Raymond Crisara, Mel Broiles, and Carmine Caruso. He attended Western CT State University as an undergrad, and attended graduate school at Manhattan School of Music and Hartt School of Music, as well as the Yale Summer School of Music Program and Music Academy of the West. Chris specializes in horns and Band instruments.
Shawn Draczynski Tobin is an experienced teacher and tutor. She has worked with a variety of students in the past, and has tutored subjects ranging from high school science to SAT II science subject tests, SAT, ACT, and SSAT preparation. She has experience working with scholarship and college applications and essays and athletic recruitment. Shawn is a licensed Connecticut teacher certified in elementary (K-6) education and biology and chemistry at the secondary (7-12) level. She has taught high school and middle school for a total of five years between Connecticut and Pennsylvania, with courses ranging from AP Biology to middle school language arts and mathematics, to robotics, SAT/ACT prep, and most recently, middle school science. Shawn graduated from the University of Connecticut with a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology and political science and a Bachelor of Science degree in molecular and cellular biology. Her master of education degree is in elementary education from the University of Pennsylvania. She is currently enjoying returning to her hometown in Connecticut after living and teaching in Philadelphia, although she still does follow Philadelphia sports.
Taylor Wheeler graduated from Oliver Wolcott Tech in 2016 as the first female Valedictorian out of the Plumbing, Heating & Cooling program. She is currently attending University of Connecticut for an honors double major in English and Human Development & Family Studies, on the track to become a high school English teacher. Taylor was accepted into the National Honor Society for Collegiate Scholars and spends her time as a teaching assistant at Oliver Wolcott Tech. She looks forward to making a educational difference one student at a time.
Tommy Furdon is a guitarist, composer and producer who has been bringing his talent and experience to collaborations that cover many genres of music and sound. He is a professional performer who has had the pleasure to share periods of musical time and space with many in various environments, such as playing guitar and bass in pit orchestras to producing experimental audio for visual artist’s gallery showings.
Tommy began giving guitar lessons to beginners in high school, and continued teaching in college while pursuing his music degree with a focus in Guitar Performance. He also plays the piano, electric bass, mandolin, and ukulele.