Category Archives: People

Multi-instrumentalist Chris Haugen

Chris Haugen teaching portraitChris Haugen is a music educator, performer and recording artist. He is well versed in a range of styles and voices. He is often noted for his use of space, tact and taste to create musical drama.

Chris has been on staff at the National Guitar Workshop, Blue Bear Music School, and numerous workshops and camps. Chris studied Music and International Relations at UCSD and earned a BA. Chris primary goal as an instructor are to engage student interest, and additionally to provide the skills and foundations for a lifetime of joy playing and learning music.

In the professional arena, Chris splits his time between guitar and slide guitar, often collaborating with industry leading artists. In the classroom you may occasionally catch him on ukulele. He believes in community through music.

Chris has toured and collaborated with countless acts and artists. He has had the good fortune to collaborate with Ken Kesey (Twister), and Sean Penn (Into the Wild). He has toured as lead guitarist for Melvin Seals (18 years with Jerry Garcia), and numerous other national acts. He continues to maintain a vibrant performance schedule leading his own electric and acoustic bands, as well as joining the rich community of local talent in the Bay Area. In addition to his rock persona, Chris recently signed with new age label Real Music, and released yoga inspired Falling Water Shimmering Strings in 2016.

In addition to music, Chris loves nature, yoga, and surfing.

You can find Chris’ musical catalog on Spotify. For an in depth bio, see his website.


Joy Chang, Program Coordinator

IMG_0573Born in Hong Kong, Joy came to the United States at the age of 4 and grew up in San Francisco.  Her connection to music began in the SF school system with a music class. Joy played violin in the Lowell High School Orchestra.  They actually made a recording of Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite!

The need to work part time to support her education at UC Berkeley abruptly intervened.  There was no more violin playing.  After graduating,  Joy began work at the Social Security Administration where she enjoyed a successful 42 year career.  Of course, there was the birth of her daughter Allison who now works as a pathologist for Kaiser in Berkeley.

After she retired in 2013, Joy decided she wanted to pursue her lifelong desire to learn piano.  She began taking classes at MCMS in piano.  Then she added the violin back into the mix. After a 40 year hiatus, it was a challenge to get those violin strings to play again, but very rewarding.

An opportunity to become Program Director of MCMS came her way, and Joy embraced the job with energy and passion.  The organizational and administrative skills Joy honed in her different assignments at the Social Security Administration have allowed her to contribute to helping MCMS run in a smooth and efficient manner.

Joy is committed to the school as both a student and as an administrator. She loves her teachers and she believes in the mission of the school.  She was instrumental in expanding the scholarship program which reaches out to aspiring low-income students in the community.

Dave Getz, Drummer and Visual Artist

Dave GetzLongtime Marin resident Dave Getz is a musician who achieved rock and roll fame in the 1960s as the original drummer for Janis Joplin and Big Brother and the Holding Company, the multi-platinum group with whom he continues to perform and tour. Dave began to work as a professional drummer at the age of 15 in jazz and dance bands in his native New York. As a teenager her toured Europe with the traditional jazz group ‘Rick Lundy and the Saints’.

Though most well known for his drumming with Big Brother and Janis, he has performed, recorded and toured all over the world with numerous jazz and rock groups, including Country Joe and the Fish, It’s a Beatiful Day, Jose Neto, Bruce Langhorne, The Dinosaurs and many others.

As an educator he has been teaching drumming in Marin for 29 years and has taught drumming at the College of Marin (The Language of Rhythm) and local high schools, among them Drake, Novato, San Marin and Sunny Hills-Braun School. He has been on the faculty of Jazz CampWest and several of his students have become professional drummers. He teaches drumming and rhythm to students of all ages, musical interests, and skill levels.

Dave is also a visual artist and earned the Master of Fine Arts degree at the San Francisco Art Institute, was a Fullbright Fellow and also earned a California Secondary Teaching credential at Sonoma State University.

Steph Lapine

DSC00986 (2)Steph is the parent of a student, is herself a student, and is an active member of the Board of Directors at Marin Community Music School.  She believes music is good for the soul.  Steph enjoys the challenge of learning and the satisfaction of playing the guitar.

Lois Lane

Lois CropLois Lane is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a longstanding psychotherapy practice in San Anselmo where she sees individuals and couples. She was also supervisor of Children’s Services for Marin County Community Mental Health. Her other longstanding avocation has been playing music. She was fortunate enough to study violin from a young age at Third Street Music Settlement School in Manhattan. In a public high school in New Jersey she participated in a regular orchestra, a string orchestra and played in a string quartet. This early enrichment led to a life long love of playing the violin, taking lessons and making music with others.   She is very grateful to participate in the Chamber Music Program at MCMS. Her goal as a Board Member is to strengthen the music programs at MCMS so other children can have the opportunity to discover the joys of making music.

In her spare time she is an avid gardener, with a large organic vegetable garden.

Peter Penhallow, Multi-Instrumentalist

Peter PenhallowPeter Penhallow is the award-winning producer of five albums for young children, and has been a popular musical director for children’s and community musical theater in Marin for nearly 40 years, with well over 100 productions to his credit. As founder and leader of the Liddypudlians, a 30-piece rock orchestra of guitars, horns, strings, chorus, and rhythm section, he enthralled local audiences for 12 years at San Anselmo’s celebrated annual Creek Park Salute to the Beatles.

At home in rock, pop, musical theater, and related styles, Peter offers instruction on guitar, keyboard, and vocals to students of all ages and skill levels.

Piano Teacher Helena Tietze

HelenaTietze Heléna Tietze is a classically trained pianist and cellist and singer who is now teaching piano lessons at Marin Community Music School.

Born and raised in Marin County, Heléna has participated in several local and national ensembles (such as Crescendo Orchestra, the National Honors Choir, and the National Orchestra Festival). She attended San Domenico High School, where she was enrolled in the Virtuoso Program and studied Music Theory. In addition to instructing students and playing in ensembles, she has also worked at several churches, where she directed and led the hymns and music.

Heléna doesn’t limit her students to one teaching method, but incorporates aspects of a variety of methods (such as the Kodaly Method) into her teaching style. During lessons, students are encouraged to play musically, as well as accurately, and a combination of technique, theory and repertoire are utilized to make for more well-rounded musicians.

Vocalist and Multi-Instrumentalist Gail Muldrow

gail_muldrowVocalist and multi-instrumentalist Gail Muldrow is a seasoned performing artist who teaches guitar, bass, drums, and vocals.  Gail’s career began as a recording vocalist with Bay Area rock legend Sly and the Family Stone.  She has performed with Graham Central Station, Merle Saunders, Melvin Seals and JGB, The Johnny Otis Show, Quicksilver Gold,  Brides of Funkenstein, the Macintosh Pipe Band, and her own Gail Mudrow Rockin’ Blues Band.  She brings her decades of real-world experience as recording and touring performer to her teaching, helping her students learn the essence of rock, funk, blues, and related styles.

Susan Pritzker

Susan Pritzker PhotoSusan has spent the better part of the last 35 years involved with community activities, politics, volunteer work and philanthropy, both locally and globally. Her primary focus has been in the area of women’s issues, particularly reproductive rights, but she has also been involved with various educational institutions and other community organizations.

A fundraiser as well as a donor, she has held leadership positions with many philanthropic organizations. Some of her current affiliations include Pitzer College and Mother Jones magazine.

With her husband and four children she established a family foundation, The Libra Foundation, whose mission is to support organizations which promote human rights.

David A. Lusterman, Director

DALDavid A. Lusterman is the president of Stringletter, which he founded in 1986, the media company that publishes Acoustic Guitar, Classical Guitar, Strings, and Ukulele magazines. He founded the Marin Community Music School in 2009.  David earned his B.A. in Comparative Literature at Columbia University and held staff positions at The New York Review of Books, democracy, The Nation, and [more]. He plays the cello and guitar.