Instructor Biographies

Mike Welsh - Guitar

Mike has been playing guitar for 50 years and has been teaching with the Music Academy since the program began in 2008. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and a Master’s degree in Family Education, both from the University of Minnesota. Most of his career has been spent in providing education and support to parents and children, but he enjoys teaching beginner and intermediate guitar students to appreciate the gift of music.

Randy Ferguson - Guitar and Ukulele

Randy taught in the Farmington School District for 38 years (1976-2014) and started the guitar curriculum in the middle schools. Randy has also taught in the Department of Continuing Studies at Hamline University for 20 years. He is a professional classical and flamenco guitarist and has been playing guitar for over 50 years.

Ann Bur - Violin

Ann is a graduate of Lawrence University Conservatory of Music and has 20 years of music teaching experience. She is a certified Suzuki teacher for books 1-4 and offers a mix of Suzuki and traditional methods. Ann performs with the Kenwood Symphony Orchestra and the Gilbert and Sullivan Very Light Opera Company.

Courtnie De Grand - Piano and Voice

Courtnie has been playing piano for over 30 years in various capacities: church to community events, musical productions to teaching piano lessons, choral accompaniment, preschool music classes and freelancing along the way. After receiving her BS in Music Therapy from Augsburg University in 2010, she decided to work within the Pre-K through high school ages. When she's not teaching, or pursuing any other music-based job, she enjoys quilting, gardening, hanging out with her kids and cats, and watching her husband's band play at various breweries and other events around the Twin Cities.

Lisa Molitor - Piano

Lisa has been playing piano for most of her life. She has had many years of experience accompanying various choirs, church services, soloists, and ensembles. She has also had training in Musikgarten, and led several young children’s choirs. Her college degree is in Elementary Education. Besides ten years of teaching private piano lessons, Lisa has taught Second grade, Kindergarten and Reading and Math intervention. She is excited to share her experience and love of music with students at the Music Academy!

Jane Lasko – Piano

Jane earned her Bachelor of Music Education Degree: Emphasis in Piano Pedagogy from Drake University. Her teaching experience started in the classroom, general and vocal music grades K-12, but most of her experience comes from teaching private piano. Her focus is helping students build a solid music foundation, her goal is for students to enjoy the process and the rewards music can bring. She believes everyone can learn to play the piano and is excited to work with students and families in the Farmington School District.