Chief Academic Officer

Rachel started playing the piano at the age of 2, taught by her mother, a concert pianist and professor. Rachel began composing at the age of 7 under the tutelage of her father, a classical composer and professor. She entered Seoul National University as the top-ranked student and earned a BA and MA in Composition. Rachel then received a Ph.D. in Composition from UCLA.

She regularly consults for jazz ensembles, as well as film composers. As an arranger and keyboardist, Rachel has performed at some of the premier venues in Los Angeles, such as Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Hollywood Bowl. In 2014, she was commissioned by the city of Seoul to compose and direct an hour-long show for a traditional Korean performance group, which ran for 250 days.

Rachel is an administrator, educator, developer, composer, arranger and performer. Rachel’s compositional and arranging style is based on a diverse range of contemporary genres, influenced by minimalism, impressionistic harmonies, ethnomusicology and commercial music.

As an administrator and educator, Rachel created, designed and developed brand new curricula for MI’s Bachelor of Music in Composition (Scoring for Visual Media) degree program. Currently, she is developing an innovative Multiple Perspective Contemporary Music Learning System (MPCMLS).

Rachel is dedicated to helping students gain extraordinary experiences, pursue their passion for music and achieve their dreams.


Dean of the School of Industry Studies
Program Chair: Audio Engineering

As a 17-year veteran of the music industry, Jonathan started out engineering for such clients as Dishwalla, Carmine Appice, Epitaph Records, Slash and Roger Daltrey. Leveraging his studio experience, Jonathan purchased and built out a major two-room facility, Studio Atlantis, in the heart of Hollywood, and for ten years presided as the President and Owner. The studio’s client base included countless engineers, producers and songwriters; artists including Janet Jackson, Motorhead, Snoop Dogg, Usher and several American Idol contestants; as well as multi-platinum-selling labels Interscope Records, Bad Boy Entertainment, Sony Records, Capitol Records and Universal Records.

Jonathan also earned an Executive MBA from the University of Southern California.

Jonathan’s studio was also credited with the soundtracks for Sex and the City, About a Boy and Rush Hour II. After selling Atlantis to Michael Jackson’s producer, Rodney Jerkins, Jonathan became Executive Director of the Power Chord Academy, a nationwide summer rock-n-roll institute for aspiring teenage musicians.

First joining the Audio Engineering department at Musicians Institute, he currently serves as both AE Chair and the Dean of the School of Industry Studies, where he presides over the Guitar Craft, Independent Artist and Music Business programs.


Associate Dean, School of Performance Studies
Program Chair: Common Course

Ron Dziubla graduated from the University of Miami, FL with a Bachelor of Music in Studio Music and Jazz and California State University, Los Angeles with a Master of Arts in Education. His professional affiliations include The American Federation of Musicians, Local 47 and the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS).

As a saxophonist, Ron has performed and recorded with artists such as Duane Eddy, Joe Bonamassa, Nick Waterhouse, Los Straitjackets, Waddy Wachtel, Robert Cray, Kid Ramos, Royal Crown Revue, Leeann Rimes, John Mayall, Chris Isaak, Raphael Saadiq, John Hiatt, Beth Hart, The Crystal Method featuring Martha Reeves, Ricky Martin, Richard Hawley, Christina Aguilera, John Fogerty, Jimmy Buffett, Jarvis Cocker, Ellie Goulding, Link Wray, Kim Wilson, Nikka Costa, and many more.

As a session musician, you can hear Ron’s saxophone at work for such producers as Kevin Shirley, Darrell Brown, Mark Needham, Dominic Messenger, Linda Perry, Rick Krizman, JJ Blair, Rich McCulley and in such lms as Burlesque, Thirteen, and Contact. His television appearances include the 2007 and 2010 Latin Grammy Awards Telecast, The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, The View, Jimmy Kimmel Live, and Today.
In June of 2011, Ron performed at the Glastonbury Festival in England with Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member Duane Eddy. He was also featured on Duane’s rst release in 25 years, Road Trip.

Ron is also an artist in his own right, having released three records. Brian Parrish of KSYM in San Antonio called his release on Little Silver Records, Melenhead, “one of the best [instrumental] releases of 1999.” Dan Forte of Vintage Guitar Magazine called Ron’s record Some Strange Blues “a great self-produced collection of vintage/ timeless rock and roll and, yes, some strangely appealing blues.”

The Ron Dziubla Group was a featured artist at the Jazzmania Festival in Cairo, Egypt in October 2010. Ron’s third release, Nasty Habit, produced by Pete Curry of Los Straitjackets, was released at the end of 2011.


Program Chair: Music Business

As a Los Angeles native born to parents of the American South, this unique combination of upbringing and experiences has served Stacy well to create a lasting professional career in the music industry for close to 30 years. Upon pursuing a traditional path after graduating high school and going on to study at the University of Southern California as well as California State Universities (at Long Beach and Northridge), she desired to get into the music business but found no college programs at the time, except one, that met this need. With education and training from UCLA Extension’s Entertainment Studies program with Music Business and Production courses, thereafter she quickly found her start in the industry with the legendary music icon Quincy Jones in his Quincy Jones Productions company.

Eventually moving up and over to Quincy Jones’ Qwest Records label (a joint venture with Warner Bros. Records), in her position as Director of A&R Stacy had the privilege of working on recording projects with Quincy himself, including his albums “From Q With Love” and “Basie & Beyond”, as well as those by a diverse range of artists in the genres of R&B, Pop, Gospel/Inspirational, Hip Hop and Jazz, including: Tevin Campbell, Tamia, Patti Austin, and Gospel trail-blazer Andraé Crouch, as well as jazz greats Milt Jackson, Sammy Nestico and John Clayton. After her twelve year tenure with Quincy Jones and his companies, Stacy continued independently in the areas of A&R/creative consulting, management and project coordination, having represented Grammy®-nominated producer Rex Rideout, and working on recordings with artists such as: Ledisi, Lalah Hathaway, Kem and Will Downing, along with a number of tribute and benefit projects, compilations and live shows that include the Grammy®-nominated “Forever, For Always, For Luther” CD as well as the subsequent Vol. II and accompanying live benefit concert at Madison Square Garden honoring Luther Vandross, “Silky Soul Music: All-Star Tribute To Maze Featuring Frankie Beverly”, and the “United We Cure” breast cancer benefit CD.

Stacy also proudly holds a membership in The Recording Academy® (formerly NARAS), and has been active with this prestigious music industry organization on several fronts over many years. In recognition of her work and participation on nominated recordings, she has garnered four Recording Academy Grammy® Certificates during her career. In addition, Stacy has served many times on Recording Academy® committees for the Grammy® Awards process, as well as being one of the principal leaders in creating and establishing in 2001 the new award category of Best Rap/Sung Collaboration in the Rap Field (now named as Best Rap/Sung Performance). Further, she was active in the Recording Academy® Los Angeles Chapter for the Urban Advisory Committee. For the industry at large, Stacy has participated and spoken on many conference panels and gatherings over her career, as well as music business focused classes at surrounding area colleges.

Joining MI in 2011 as faculty and since becoming Music Business Program Chair in 2014, Stacy sees her current position as coming full circle as it has always been an important passion of hers to educate those entering the music business, regularly imparting knowledge to those who crossed her path.

The most recent accomplishment under her Program Chair leadership has been the development and launch of the Associate of Science in Music Business degree, a very robust, intensive education covering the scope of the music industry’s many business areas. With committed efforts all around, Stacy counts it as a privilege to have been hands-on and involved alongside the expert Music Business Program faculty to bring this degree program to fruition over an ambitious timeline. In addition, Stacy oversees Music Business courses which are incorporated across MI’s other educational programs, as well as the regular updating of core Music Business Program curriculum to keep current with the ever-evolving industry.

Overall as an educator and administrator, Stacy truly feels very fortunate to be able to shape and develop music business education in an official capacity as MI’s Music Business Program Chair, preparing aspiring professionals to be effective and successful in their chosen music industry careers.


Program Chair: Vocals

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, Byrd studied opera and piano from age 12 and sings in five languages. As a teenager, she co-founded and sang in church choirs, performed in a band and narrated children’s concerts for the Cleveland Orchestra. She studied at Kent State University, Karamu Theater and Dobama Theater, and is now an Artist-in-Residence at the renowned Berklee College of Music.

Debra Byrd tops an elite list of vocal coaches in the music, television and film industries. Oprah Winfrey named Byrd “America’s Top Coach For Best Vocal Advice.” Byrd’s “Star School” includes Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Carly Rae Jepsen, Jennifer Hudson, Margaret Cho, Bette Midler, Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds, and hundreds of singers from The Voice, American Idol, Canadian Idol, The Next, the Grammy Awards, High School Musical, Majors & Minors, Operation Rising Star and The Winner Is. She has coached, judged and mentored on ABC, NBC, FOX, MTV, CW, Disney, The Hub Network, ITV, CTV and the Pentagon Channel.

Byrd is an entertainment renaissance woman, a road warrior performing around the world with artists including Kelly Clarkson, The Eurythmics, UB40, Lyle Lovett, Roberta Flack, Patti Austin and Bob Geldof. She was a recording artist on RSO/Polydor Records; and recorded, toured and performed duets with Bob Dylan and Barry Manilow–in addition to being vocal arranger on Manilow’s Emmy Award-winning DVD, Music & Passion. As an actress, she received outstanding reviews for her leading role as Da Singer in the national touring company of Broadway’s Bring In ‘Da Noise, Bring In ‘Da Funk and was nominated for a 2001 Black Theatre Alliance Award for Could It Be Magic. Byrd’s Broadway credits include The Human Comedy, Barry Manilow on Broadway, Haarlem Nocturne and Ain’t Misbehavin’. She has worked in movies for Paramount, Disney, NBC Universal Studios, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros., and Miramax. Byrd can be heard on the film soundtracks of the Lion King 2 1/2 and Sister Act II, among many others. She was vocal coach for the 2010 Grammy-nominated national tour of Ain’t Misbehavin,’ as well as the special 30th anniversary production in Los Angeles, and for Holland America Cruise Lines.

As an educator, Byrd co-authored and edited MI’s Vocal Technique Textbooks. Byrd can be seen and heard on the 2015 Academy Awards performing with Lady Gaga, John Legend & Common’s Oscar winning song “Glory” and the Lego Movie production number.

She is currently a vocal coach on NBC-TV’s “The Voice” and was head vocal coach on “American Idol” for 10 + years.

In addition to performing, Byrd has produced a successful product line that incorporates her Star School Live! vocal seminars, her instructional DVD “Welcome To Star School.” She is currently developing an exclusive line of herbal products that will protect, soothe and maintain vocal health.


Program Chair: Independent Artist and DJ Performance and Production

Aside from her 20+ year career as a DJ and 15 years as a producer of electronic music, Lacey graduated from University of Southern California in Los Angeles, some years after receiving pro-audio certifications in Audio Engineering, Music Business, Sound Design for TV & Film, and Songwriting & Production at Dallas, Texas’ famous recording studio and school formerly known as Dallas Sound Lab (currently known as Media Tech Institute).

Lacey is also an alumni of MI’s Music Business Program, from which her professional career in audio technology and education began with a single internship at monster software instrument and hardware company, Native Instruments. Here, she spent many years working in various roles, most notably as a technical specialist and beta tester for NI’s flagship DJ product line, Traktor. When joining the ranks at MI, Lacey used this knowledge and experience to create several courses in the DJ Performance & Production program and for MI Online. Lacey has also filled the role of Program Director for electronic music production and performance-oriented non-profit organizations Open Tone Project and Give A Beat, which cater to at-risk youth in underserved communities around Los Angeles County.

During the last two decades (and counting) of fierce dedication to electronic dance culture, Lacey has shared the stage with countless legends of house music, such as Roger Sanchez, Jesse “The Originator” Saunders, Diz, DJ Heather, DJ Colette, Stacy Kidd, Mark Grant, DJ Dan, and more. She has played in dozens of legendary spaces around the country, notably Hollywood’s beloved staples King King and Avalon, Dallas’ legendary Club One, and countless warehouses, outdoor festivals, and secret spaces accessible only through word-of-mouth and special invite. She has also been spotted dancing in music videos for DJ Colette and beloved LA-local live house music band Zona.

Lacey has a number of releases under her DJ alias Lacey IQ, most recently on labels such as the highly prolific Good For You Records imprint and well-respected techno and tech house label Krafted Underground. When not releasing dance tracks, Lacey spends her time creating ambient soundscapes and melodic, multi-layered downtempo and chillout music under her alias Inquiri, which has two full-length independent album releases to date under her recently-hatched personal label Concurrent Recordings. Her specialization in Native Instruments products such as Traktor, Komplete, and Maschine, have added a tremendous versatility to her style of producing, designing sounds, and teaching.


Program Chair: Bass

A native of the Washington, D.C. area, Maurice has been a proud resident of Hollywood since 1998. He is an Honors graduate of MI, having earned a Development Award in his first year as well as the Outstanding Student award in 1999. He has often said that his experience as an MI student was life-changing. His musical background also includes piano, guitar and trombone.

Maurice continues to perform locally and internationally, having shared the stage with artists including Carl Anderson, Zakk Wylld, Alessandro Cortini, Nick Menza, Shannon Larkin and Virgil Donati. Maurice proudly endorses Sadowsky Guitars, Ashdown Engineering, Moollon Guitars, D’Addario and Colossal Cables.

In April 2013, Maurice Verloop was appointed Chair of the Bass Program at Musicians Institute. Prior to this, he was a full-time faculty member at MI, earning the Instructor of the Year award in 2003 and 2009. His recent academic contributions have included designing the innovative curriculum for the Bass Program’s core and elective courses, which was introduced in Fall 2014.


Program Chair: Guitar Craft

A Los Angeles native, Paul got his start studying at the Guitar Craft Program at Musicians Institute in 2001. Certified in the eld of Guitar Craft, Paul Roberts promotes reliable methods of craftsmanship through instructional courses and various publications.

Paul’s first professional experience was gained while working for master luthier John Carruthers at his custom guitar and repair shop in Venice, California. His responsibilities included performing all types of repairs and modi cations on a wide variety of stringed instruments. He also served as a guitar tech for local bands. Paul then worked at the custom shop of Los Angeles guitar builder James Tyler, where as part of a four-person team, he built over 300 guitars a year. More recently, Paul has worked at Truetone Music doing repairs for many of L.A.’s professional and amateur musicians. Today Paul continues to refine his craft by working for a variety of personal clients that he has met over the years.

Paul has worked on instruments for many different musicians. Some of these notable artists include Ry Cooder, Fleetwood Mac, Andy Summers, Uli Jon Roth, Ben Harper, Neil Diamond, Jackson Browne, Billy Gibbons, Joe Bonamassa, Izzy Stradlin, Norman Brown, Vince Neil, Ziggy Marley, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and Seal.

Paul specializes in guitar repair, restoration, and customization. Paul builds upon old-school craftsmanship and adapts contemporary techniques to meet the needs of the modern day player. Paul has repaired, customized, restored, and built thousands of instruments, ranging from electric and acoustic guitars, classical and amenco guitars, electric and upright basses; to mandolins, banjos, ukuleles, bouzoukis, lutes, charangos, sitars, ouds, guitarróns, bajo sextos, and cellos.

Paul is respected for his dedication to detail and honest practical approach to guitar craft. He is committed to helping students understand craftsmanship, and to ultimately achieve their goals in the industry.


Program Chair: Drums

Stewart became interested in music at a very early age, gravitating towards drums and percussion after hearing Led Zeppelin in elementary school. Stewart excelled musically in high school, earning top honors in All State and All Eastern Conference Jazz Bands and Orchestras. He enrolled in the Studio Music and Jazz Program at the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami, earning a Bachelors Degree in Music Performance.

Stewart acted as Jazz Coordinator for the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts, working alongside prominent jazz educators such as Rufus Reid, Dave Grusin and Wynton Marsalis. As a performer, Stewart has recorded for many major record labels and artists, including Jimmy Buffett, Preston Smith, Bruce Kulick and Pedro Suarez Veritz. He can also be heard on the soundtrack to the lm Contact.

Stewart is an administrator, author, producer, musical director and performer. Stewart’s diverse musical style draws influence from roots, rock, electronica, pop, jazz and blues. In addition, Stewart serves the drumming community as a lecturer, clinician and counselor.

Stewart is a dedicated educator who has developed his academic offerings towards the goal of providing clear and positive nurturing to young students. Stewart has created broad and cutting-edge curricula for the Drum Program, from drum set soloing to keyboards.


Program Chair: Guitar

Stig Mathisen is a guitarist and educator from Norway. He has a Masters and a Doctoral degree in guitar performance from University of Southern California, where he graduated with numerous awards for outstanding achievements. He studied Classical guitar at Tromso University for over 6 years, and was a faculty member at Tromso University College and Kongsbakken Junior College from 1998-2006, teaching studio technology and guitar. He has received the following awards: Fulbright Scholarship, The Norway-America Associations Graduate Study & Research Scholarship (twice), USC Studio Guitar Departmental Award (three times), Outstanding Academic Achievement Award by OIS/USC, Pi Kappa Lambda Award, plus Outstanding Talent Award by the Norwegian Jazz Association.

Stig has been involved in numerous musical situations, and has worked with artists and bands such as Alcatrazz, Peter Erskine, Lamont Dozier, Brandon Fields, John Jorgensen, Stu Hamm, Robben Ford, Jorn Lande, Patrice Rushen, and the Tromso Symphony Orchestra. In 2015, Stig held masterclasses alongside Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Guthrie Govan, Tosin Abasi, Eric Johnson and others at Steve Vai and Joe Satriani’s summer camps (“Vai Academy” and “G4 Experience”).

An eclectic guitarist by nature, Stig is equally comfortable with rock, jazz and classical music, and has rubbed shoulders with numerous world-class musicians over the years. A passionate explorer and a relentless seeker of all knowledge pertaining to guitar, improvisation, composition, music history and music philosophy, he has been on a quest since his formative years to discover the inner mechanics and the deeper secrets of music.


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