Music Theory & Ear-Training
Nicholas Betson’s first experiences drawing treble clefs, eighth notes, and slurs came when he arranged some tunes for his fourth-grade orchestra class (a rag-tag string quartet: 1 violin, 1 viola, 2 cellos). Since then, he has became a firm believer that music is about bringing people from distinct backgrounds together in harmony and making friends by underscoring the differences. While growing up in Indiana, he studied composition with Zae Munn at St. Mary’s College (where he also studied music theory and conducting) and played viola in the Notre Dame Symphony Orchestra (under the direction of Daniel Stowe). Later studies at the University of Chicago, Humboldt University in Berlin, and Yale University eventually brought him from the Midwest to the East Coast.
A dedicated educator, Mr. Betson has taught in classrooms and as an individual tutor for 15 years, working with students ranging from 5 years old to … retired. He has taught subjects ranging from math and English to music cognition to the German language. He has also been able to marry his love for music and theater as a frequent collaborator for Heartbeat Opera, a company hailed by The New York Times as “a small, adventurous company that strives to make opera a visceral, intimate and immediate ‘encounter.’” When not in the classroom, he enjoys exploring coffee brewing techniques and learning new card games from around the world.VIEW ALL FACULTY