Established in 2005, The Schoolhouse of Rock began in a tiny casita off of Jacobus Avenue and 1st Street, where founder/owner Sarah Rose Fire taught small private lessons to fledgling rock stars. Since then the Schoolhouse has grown to a large, multifaceted, fully-equipped lessons studio where we host performances, various Rock Camps throughout the year, and turn our amps up to 11 as we give our students the tools to perform, compose and express themselves in the 21st Century of Rock ‘n’ Roll.
We are a private music school that embraces the spontaneity and exuberance of ROCK music. While there are many schools of thought when it comes to music education, The Schoolhouse of Rock is guided by one main concept – music should be FUN. Kids and adults are entitled to learn to play and understand music at their own pace in an environment where they are free to express themselves and enjoy the process. This means the teachers at the SHOR are not only responsible for having a deep well of profound music comprehension, experience, practice, and theory but that the brunt of the responsibility for ensuring that every student who walks through the doors has a positive learning experience also falls on their shoulders. Fortunately, the Schoolhouse of Rock’s headmaster, Sarah Fire, is more than happy to carry that weight along with some of the most talented, engaging, awesome music teachers around. Read more about our fantastic teaching force below.
- Music Theory
- Rock Band Classes
- Live Performance Coaching
- Mixing & Production
Meet the Headmaster:
Sarah Fire, Headmaster – Piano, Vocals, Guitar, Bass
Sarah has been giving music lessons for 21 years and is still inspired by her students on a daily basis. The Schoolhouse of Rock became an outlet for her innovative, student-focused, comfortable teaching style in 2005. Her musical influences range from favorite musician Ludwig Van Beethoven to favorite band Radiohead, from The Beatles to The Smashing Pumpkins, from The Jackson Five to The Ben Folds Five. (One of her most pressing goals in life is to become close friends with Ben Folds.)
Back in the early 2000s, Sarah was the front-woman for the East coast, alternative-pop band Planet Janet.
She teaches classical piano, rock piano, voice, beginning guitar and beginning bass. All of her lessons include an insight into Music Theory. Sarah also specializes in teaching music to children with developmental disabilities, Apraxia, ASD, Down Syndrome and is always looking for students who have recently had cochlear implant surgery. She believes that everyone’s voice deserves to be heard.
Adam Ackermann – Drums, Trumpet
Adam is a graduate of the University of Arizona School where he received a Bachelor in Music Performance in Trumpet. He played drums with the UA Studio Jazz Ensemble for nearly 4 years and was fortunate enough to be selected as the School of Music’s Outstanding Senior for the graduating class of 2012. Adam started performing professionally at a young age. He has gigged with a variety of bands, playing genres such as jazz to flamenco, most recently with The Bennu, The Kings of Pleasure and touring across Arizona with Lonely Street Productions. In 2013, Adam played drums aboard a cruise ship that sailed the Caribbean, the Mediterranean and the Baltic. While at the UA, his music studies took him to China, Australia and Mexico. And 2018 marks his 13th year playing drums at the Gaslight Theater.
In addition to performing, Adam has taught private lessons for both drums and trumpet since high school. He has worked as a staff member for the Rincon/University Marching Band and has also volunteered lessons with the Tucson Symphony Women’s Association.
Joshua Carruthers – Drums
Born and raised in Bridgeport, Connecticut, Joshua was active on the gigging scene in Connecticut as well as New York City for jazz and experimental music. Joshua can be found playing in a straight ahead Jazz context, working with a Rock/Pop group, or even playing modern R&B and Hip Hop. He is an in-demand freelance player whose music talents have taken his from New York to California, from Bermuda to Morocco.
Through learning many styles he has formed an interesting way of expressing himself on the instrument. Teaching has always been a big part of what he does and Joshua has much experience in conveying ideas to students of all ages. He has taught at many local studios and given many private lessons in the East cost area. Joshua is very passionate about sharing his love for the drum set and helping people develop their own unique way of expressing themselves musically.
Mike Sadler – Ukulele, Guitar, Bass, Beginning Piano, Songwriting, Music Theory, Youth Rock Band, Group Classes
Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Mike moved to Tucson after graduating from Boston’s prestigious Berklee College of Music in 2008, with a degree in Guitar and Songwriting. Mike started playing guitar at 14 years old and has over 25 years experience playing and teaching in various lead and rhythm styles, including pop, rock, folk, country, jazz, and many others. He plays guitar, banjo, sings, and writes songs for the popular local group, “The Fourth Street Stringband” and has been a member of “Treehouse Fire” as well as several other local bands. Mike’s songs have been featured on KXCI Community Radio and he has been a finalist in the Tucson Folk Festival’s songwriting competition.
Patrick Morris – Bass
Patrick is a Tucson-born bassist and educator, know for his infectious groove and creative basslines. He holds a Bachelor of Music from the Berklee College of Music, focusing on Performance and Jazz Composition. Patrick has studied with Lincoln Goines, Damien Erskine, Victor Wooten, and Anthony Vitti, and has been a guest instructor at IAM Music Institute. His stylistic versatility and musical instincts lend authenticity to his playing, making him and unwavering foundation for his bandmates. Joshua has professional experience playing jazz, R&B, hip-hop, reggae, Brazilian, rock, folk, and bluegrass, and has toured the U.S. and Mexico playing all the genres.
Deanna “Dee” Cross – Voice, Violin, Viola, Guitar, Piano, Music Exploration for Young Children
A Tucson native, Deanna (Dee) grew up in a musical family and began singing and performing at a young age at her local Church and at “living room concerts” to entertain her parent’s friends. She studied music at Pima Community College and Northern Arizona University, where she played viola in the University Orchestra. For the past 14 years, she’s been a working musician involved with several projects around town, encompassing different genres. One such group, “Blue Monsoon”, for which Dee provided backing vocals and fiddle for several years, was voted “Best Country Band” by The Tucson Weekly in 2017, and her original project “The Unday”, where she is the songwriter and front woman, has come in second place for “Best Local Band” (just behind Calexico!). In addition to Vocal Coaching, Dee offers beginner’s lessons for Violin, Viola, Guitar, Piano, and ‘music exploration’ for very young children.
Jackson Lybarger – Drums, Bass, Guitar, Voice, Keys
Perfect Pitch is a rare auditory phenomenon characterized by the ability of a person to identify or re-create any given musical note without the benefit of any reference tone. Researches estimate this occurs 1 in 10,000 people. Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, and Handel all had perfect pitch and Instructor Jackson Lybarger is one of those people as well. Jackson has been playing music as early as he could remember. He started off with a battery powered keyboard when he was a child, mastered it, and moved on to other instruments as he grew older. People with perfect pitch can pick up any instrument and play them without any prior experience and this has helped Jackson along on his musical journey. He can play any instrument and specializes in teaching Vocals, Guitar, Piano, Bass and Drums. Teaching gives Jackson the opportunity to express the love and passion he has for music and express his dedication to the art form. The love we have for music here at the Schoolhouse of Rock is the reason why Jackson has chosen to teach here. He enjoys working with students to help them achieve their own musical goals and dreams. He is available to teach Tuesdays and Thursdays and is eager to work with more students here at the school in this new year. We are so lucky to have him on staff.
Maya Rizk – Drums, Youth Rock Band
Maya is a phenomenal drummer with many years of experience. She has toured internationally as a drummer. Around town, you can catch her playing with the local funk/rock band, “Yum”.
Izzy Kunkel – Guitar, Bass, Youth Rock Band
Izzy is the President Resident Rockstar here at The Schoolhouse of Rock! She teaches beginning guitar and works one-on-one with some of our rock groups. Izzy is also a talented songwriter. She performs as much as possible with her rock/punk band, “Stripes”, at Club Congress and at various other local events.
Paulina Kervran – Scheduling, Preschool of Rock, Guitar, Karaoke
Paulina has a huge passion for music and people. She started her musical journey when she joined her middle school orchestra at the age of nine in New Jersey. It continued when her family moved to Arizona where she continued playing the violin and was introduced to the guitar by a friend of hers and quickly fell in love with the instrument. From there, Paulina has picked up Singing, playing the Harmonica, Bass, and Drums. She’s played Bass for “Seventh Sun”, Vocals and Rhythm Guitar/Bass for “3rd Nature”, and is currently doing back-up vocals and light Percussion with “Armando Moreno and The Southern Revival” here in Tucson. You can also find her around town hosting Karaoke nights at such places as Shooter’s Steakhouse and Mr. Head’s Art Gallery and Bar (both first-place 2018 Tucson Weekly winners Best Karaoke and Best Late Night Karaoke, respectively).
Paulina is both excited and honored to be part of the amazing staff at the Schoolhouse of Rock and its growing community of incredible students and parents. You’ll usually find her either behind the counter as your Client Care Specialist or teaching Preschool of Rock and encouraging little ones to start their musical journey on the right path.
(520) 882-ROCK (7625)
210 South Plumer Ave, Suite #150 – Tucson, AZ 85719
Monday to Friday, 12p to 8p
Saturday 10a to 6p
Sunday 12p to 6p
and BY APPOINTMENT