Our Teachers

Our Teachers



IMG_8970 copyFlavio Villani completed a Bachelor of Piano Performance with Matteo Napoli at the Conservatory “G.Martucci” in Salerno in 2007. In 2012 he completed a Master in Piano Performance at the University of Auckland with first class honours under the guidance of pianist Stephen De Pledge. He is absolute winner of the Northland Society Piano Competition in 2008 as well as first prize for the Llewelyn Piano Competition in both 2011 and 2012. Flavio has performed many recitals as a soloist as well as in different duos extensively in New Zealand. He has played in various festivals including the Venice Biennale (2011) for the exhibition and installation of the New Zealand pavilion, “Lamezia Festival” (2013 and 2014), “Pianino Festival” (Mallorca), “Maggiociondolo Festival” (Alessandria) as well as performances in New Zealand as a soloist or with the Piano Quartet. At the end of 2014, he performed Rachmaninoff Concerto n.2 with the Orchestra Filarmonica of Calabria in Italy and subsequently with the Orchestra of CalArts in Los Angeles. The recording of that performance leads to the creation of a bio-documentary “Crossing Rachmaninoff” which premiered at the NZ International Film Festival in 2015 and then was shown in the USA, China and Europe the following year with great feedback. He also performed with New Plymouth Orchestra and Auckland Symphony Orchestra. Finally, he is the Director of the Villani Music School in St Heliers under the St Heliers Community Centre where he organizes concerts, master classes and leads a busy activity between the local and the musical community.


IMG_2881 (1)South African born pianist Caitlyn Abbot began her studies with DeWet Bruwer (South Africa) and continued at the University of Capetown before immigrating to New Zealand in 2006. She was then accepted into the New Zealand School of Music for studies with Judith Clarke while she was a high school student. In 2010 she began studies at Auckland University with Stephen De Pledge (New Zealand) majoring in performance piano. Since 2014 Caitlyn has been teaching individual and group piano lessons as well as theory classes. Installing a love of music in students, whether classical or not, is her primary aim in lessons.


marko (1)Marko graduated from the Royal College of Music (London) with a BMus in 2009. He attained his Masters in Chamber Music from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, during which time he also performed his Barbican debut in 2012. At 16 he was invited and awarded a scholarship to study with Prof. Pavel Vernikov at the “Scuola di Musica di Fiesole”. Marko has been awarded first prize in several international competitions including “Performing Australian Music” (London, 2008), “Giovanni Batista Pergolesi” (Italy, 2003) and “Peter Konjovich” (Yougoslavia, 2001). With his ensemble, the ‘Ristov Piano Quartet’, Marko performed in festivals across the UK, France, Swizerland, Macedonia, Kosovo and Serbia. Since his arrival in New Zealand in 2013 Marko is a regular player with the APO and ACO as well as section leader of “Bach Musica“.


Scott Wotherspoon is an Auckland based musician and tutor with a colourful musical history, taking up the drums and guitar at the age of 8 Scott has played in a wide range of genres including Stage, Concert, Orchestral, Latin, Reggae, Funk, Country Folk, Rock/Pop and Metal which has formed the basis of his solid and varied musical foundation. Scott currently plays in alternative rock band New Way Home who has developed a solid fan base through their tight live performances up and down the country and across Australia. Being handpicked by the likes of Meshuggah, Devin Townsend, Machine Head, Killswitch Engage and Slipknot to play in front of large stadium crowds is testament to their musicianship, the band is now signed with Warner Music.


pic1A bit of humour, a dose of quirkiness and an element of performance: these are some of the ingredients that make Robert Loretz an inspirational teacher. Robert, who was head of the music at Massey High School in Auckland, was in 2012 crowned New Zealand’s Most Inspiring Teacher. The University of Auckland alumnus, who has a Bachelor of Music (1992) majoring in performance piano and a Master of Music (1994), was chosen from 1100 teachers who were nominated by their students for the Warehouse Stationery award. He has a profound knowledge in many areas, in particular, music. he has a wicked sense of humour, which he uses to great effect and is highly creative resulting in high levels of student engagement and motivation. He is a superb musician in his own right as a pianist, composer as well as a chorister and commands huge respect from his students and colleagues.

„It is because what I want for my students is for them to have the same enjoyment and the same world of music open to them as I know exists.“


received_190231198862919Alistair studied flute with Professor Emeritus Uwe Grodd and graduated with a Masters Degree in Music in 2009.  He has 20 years experience in teaching flute – many gaining distinction exam marks or entry into University to further their music studies.  Alistair was the Assistant Director of the International Chamber Music Festival during his music studies, which hosted some of the leading classical musicians of that time throughout NZ.  He has extensive experience in Tertiary Music Education and was the Course and Programme Director for a contemporary music degree in Christchurch and a performing arts school in Auckland.  Alistair is passionate about seeing his students reach their full potential and incorporates his experience as a Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner into his teaching and performing.

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