Originally from Florida, Jesse Atkinson now lives in Nashville. He has played guitar since age 7, and counts as mentors Mitchell Stevens, Alan Brandell, Mario DaSilva, and James DaSilva. His skills have been shaped by influences ranging from Led Zeppelin to his home church worship pastor, David Grimm. He has played at illustrious venues such as the Grand Ole' Opry and the Bluebird Cafe. He has attended various music camps including performing in and working at the Annie Moses Summer Music Festival, often performing original music.
As of January, 2021, Mr. Mario DaSilva will be offering classes & advanced jazz & classical guitar lessons at Peachtree Learning Center! Mario DaSilva comes to Peachtree with degrees in Commercial Guitar, Composition & Arranging as well as a Masters Degree in Church Music & Classical Guitar from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Mario has played extensively around the country in a variety of genres and with artists ranging from Little Big Town, Lari White, Michael O’Brien, Felipe Delarossa, and various Chamber Orchestras. He has also arranged & composed for many artists including Josh Turner, Nashville Ballet, Nashville Shakespeare Festival, Frist Visual Arts Center, and Barbara Mandrell. He has taught at the University of Louisville, Jefferson Community College, and currently at Indiana University Southeast and Belmont University. He is thrilled to offer both intermediate and advanced classes and lessons to students and adults here in the Peachtree community!
Check our website for Class Times to sign up for Improvisation Class/Group Lesson (both beginning & advanced) as well as Music Theory! Also call or email to inquire about private lessons in jazz guitar, flamenco guitar, advanced guitar, and commercial guitar!
Lucy is a 2018 homeschool graduate of Daniel 1 Academy. Having been a part of the Peachtree handbell program since its inception, she has been an integral part of both the Intermediate and Master Bells classes, as well as a teacher of Handbells I, Music I, and Music II.
Lucy’s musical training began with piano 11 years ago, and she is currently studying piano under Camille DaSilva of the Annie Moses Band. She has been a national member of the Piano Guild Auditions for three years, having scored Superior Plus in 2016, 2017 and 2018. Lucy is also a student of composition and songwriting at The Conservatory of Annie Moses.
Lucy believes that excellence in music should be pursued to glorify God, encourage, and bless others. She is excited to share her experience and vision with Peachtree students.
Jennifer Ledbetter graduated Magna Cum Laude with a B.S. in Music Education from Pensacola Christian College and has accumulated over 25 years teaching experience. She is presently offering private instruction in piano and voice. Mrs. Ledbetter is a member of the American College of Musicians and sends private piano students each year to the National Fraternity of Student Musicians Guild Piano Playing Auditions. Mrs. Ledbetter is also a member of the MTVA and NAFME and uses these connections to provide opportunities for her vocal students. To further her expertise, Mrs. Ledbetter has recently enrolled in graduate school at Tennessee Technological University. She is earning her MA in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Music.
As part of the pursuit of excellence in lesson time, students are drilled in fundamental musicianship skills (scales, cadences, arpeggios), trained in music theory (incorporating transposition and improvisation), and exposed to great literature in all genres of music. Students who are interested can also learn to play from lead sheets and chord charts.
Mrs. Ledbetter believes that music is a gift from God to be stewarded and given back to Him in the form of service, worship, and praise. Mrs. Ledbetter considers it a blessing to teach each student, and desires not only to inspire them to excellence in musicianship but also in life.
Olivia Merritt is a homeschool graduate of Daniel 1 Academy, and is blessed to have been teaching at Peachtree for 5 years, She is a certified Family Herbalist through Vintage Remedies, has formally studied photography, and co-owns Livi & Lucy Market as well as Olivia Merritt Photography. She has studied piano, theater, and voice over the last 10 years, and is currently studying voice and drama at the Annie Moses Conservatory. Olivia has participated in a number of shows through the Homeschool Dramatic Society and the Annie Moses Summer Music Festival, taking her to Carnegie Hall, the Grand Ole’ Opry, and a role in the premiere of the musical “Merry Christmas, Uncle Scrooge!” as well as a drama masterclass with acting legend John Rhys-Davies. Olivia was a member of Peachtree’s bell and vocal choirs from their beginning through her graduation. She loves working with young children and helping develop their creativity, and is thankful for the opportunity to share her interests with children while encouraging them to develop their talents to use for God’s glory.
Sarah is a violinist and mandolinist. She has been classically trained at the Conservatory of Annie Moses, where she is now a faculty member. Alongside her classical repertoire she has studied fiddle and improvisation skills extensively. For a few years at the Conservatory she has honed skills in arranging and composing her own music, which today she does regularly for the band “Felicity”.
As a student of the Annie Moses Summer Music Festival, she has performed on the stages of the Grand Ole Opry, Carnegie Hall, and the Bluegrass Underground. She was in the orchestra for the Annie Moses Band’s PBS show “The Art of the Love Song,” and she has recorded on several projects with the Nashville Praise Symphony, the Notgrass Company and the Great Smoky Mountain Association. Her first EP came out in 2016.
Sarah has taught at Peachtree Learning Center since 2012, and was excited to formally help organize Peachtree’s strings program in 2017. She is certified in the Annie Moses Method and in Suzuki through level 2. She believes that the pursuit of excellence in music is a powerful tool in the Kingdom of God that can give the young and old alike a platform for spreading the Gospel, and is enthusiastic about Peachtree’s vision of “Redeeming the Arts for the Glory of God.” Please visit her website sarahmerrittmusic.com.
Jennifer Poore recently graduated from Middle Tennessee State University with a dual B.M. in Guitar Performance and Vocal/General Music Education. She has played classical guitar for nine years and has sung for over six, and she is thrilled to be offering private instruction in both guitar and voice. Jennifer believes that music is a gift of God to be cultivated, enjoyed, and used to serve those around us. She believes that through seeking to excel in our musical pursuits, we not only worship God but learn more about what it means to be His creatures, created in His image.