Piano Teachers

Ms. Shiva Samimi

Ms. Shiva Samimi started playing piano at the age of eight. Upon completion of her musical training under the tutelage of well-known musicians, she began teaching piano lessons at age 19, while studying for a Masters degree in Architecture. After receiving her MA degree, she discovered her ultimate passion for music teaching and decided to enrich her musical knowledge by studying university level music materials. In 2003, she was among a selected few who ware successfully admitted to MA Music degree program of Tehran University of Arts. She moved to United States in 2004 and followed her musical career by teaching piano lessons at Recreation Plus, Persian Cultural Club (PCC), and East West Music and Dance institutes. In 2005, she founded Shiva Music Academy in San Jose, California and then moved to San Ramon in 2009. Since then, she has completed  Kindermusik  license program, and became a member of  Music Teachers' Association of California (MTAC), and American College of Musicians / National Guild of Piano Teachers to make sure the quality of her lessons meet the high standards, set by these organizations. 

Ms. Chia Chi (Nina) Yen

Chia Chi Yen, born in Taiwan, discovered the piano at age of five. Within a few years, she has 
won many prizes in Taiwan. In 2009, she was admitted into the Oberlin Conservatory of 
Music with a merit scholarship, where she completed her Bachelor’s Degree under tutelage 
of Professor Haewon Song. In May, 2015, Ms. Yen completed a Master’s Degree at the 
Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University studying with Professor Yong Hi Moon. 
She is currently a member of MTAC (Music Teachers’ Association of California), and 
CMTANC (Chinese Music Teachers’ Association of Northern California).
Ms. Yen was a participant in many prestigious music festivals, including Music Festival 
at Walnut Hill, Cooper Piano Festival at Oberlin, Aspen Music Festival and School. 
She has also performed in piano master classes with world leading pianists, such as 
Hung-Kuan Chen, Meng-Chieh Liu, Ruth Slenczynska, John Perry, Choong-Mo Kang, 
Matti Raekallio, and others. Among the venues in which she has performed 
include Jordan Hall (Boston, MA) Le Petit Trianon Theatre (San Jose, CA), 
Mayer Theatre (Santa Clara, CA), Warner Concert Hall (Oberlin, OH), 
Chung Shan Hall (Taichung, Taiwan), Glass Museum (Hsinchu, Taiwan).

Mr. Maziar Atrian

Maziar Atrian (composer, pianist and music instructor) began learning piano at the age of twelve. 
When he was fourteen, he performed his first public piano recital at "Shiraz University Cultural 
and Recreational Center". He was selected as the pianist of the teenager band of the "Fars 
Cultural Organization" that year.

He studied music in Tehran and after graduation with an AA degree in Music, started teaching 
music in 1998. He had cooperation with several musical institutes in Shiraz-Iran such as "Saba", 
"Mahoor" and "Zand-e-Bayat" as the instructor of piano, solfege and music theory for fourteen years. 

He founded "Parsian Choral Band" in cooperation with a number of youth singers of Shiraz in 1999.
"Parsian Choral Band" has been a well known musical group of Iran with several successful 
performances under the conduction of Maziar Atrian, and it achieved the second place of choral 
section of "Fajr Music Festival" in 2008.

In 2014, he moved to Northern California and started teaching music at "Shiraz Arts Academy"
in San Jose. He then 
founded "Maziar Piano School" in collaboration with "Persian Cultural Club" 
in Campbell th
at same year. 
Maziar Atrian performed his first official concert in the United States in 
June 2015 at "Trianon Theatre" in San Jose.

For more information about Maziar, please visit:  

Ms. Chelsea Kim


Chelsea Kim is a trained classical pianist of 15 years. She is a graduate of the University of Illinois 
at Urbana-Champaign, with a B.Sc in Psychology and a minor in Piano Performance.
Chelsea received a scholarship to Disneyland to perform with the choir, and this later opened doors
for Chelsea to intern at Stanford University as Professor Linduska's accompanist. Chelsea completed
the Certificate of Merit Advanced Level (level 10) with an honors and went on to the Panel Level,
also placing honors as a NorCal Division Top Tier Nominee. Professors at the San Francisco
Conservatory of Music have also recognized her talent when they admitted her to the Preparatory
Division post-audition at just 15 years old. Chelsea has competed in the Sylvia M. Ghiglieri Piano
Competition, placing Honorable Mention. She has also competed in the Youth Focus Competition
and was titled the Grand Prize Winner. 

Chelsea first got into piano pedagogy at the age of 16, and started teaching Piano.
She has been teaching Piano in a music school in San Ramon for the last 3 years.
Throughout her 6-year teaching career, Chelsea has taught all ages from 4 years old to
10th grade and offers baroque, classical, romantic, Broadway, and pop styles. 

Ms. Joanne Kim  

Hyun (Joanne) Kim is a well experienced pianist and educator. She is originally from Korea. She completed her Bachelors’ degree at Kyung Hee University under tutelage of professors Park, Sun-Hae, Choi, Seung-Hae, and Kim, Jin-Sook in 1999 and earned her master’s degree at Germany (Stuttgart National Music School) under tutelage of professor O’Byme, Patrick in 2001. Since then, she has performed numerous recitals (including three solo recitals) and concerts and played chamber music in Germany, Korea, and U.S.A.

She also spent years training young professionals at Kyung Hee University, Dong-Eui University, Christian Music Conservatory, and Bernardin Graduate School. She was an accompanist for Stuttgart Musikhochschule (Prof. Peiffer Klass). Currently, she is a member of MTAC (Music Teachers’ Association of California), The Piano Society of Korea, International Music Council, and Seoul Musicians’ Academy.


Guitar & Electric Bass Teacher

​Mr. Darren Ruocco


Darren Ruocco has been playing bass for almost 20 years and had got his start at the age of 
ten playing the string bass in his elementary school orchestra. In middle school, he played 
string bass in the concert band. Middle School was when he got his first electric bass and 
started playing Jazz at Harvest Park Middle School. In High School, he received a scholarship 
for his musicianship and applied it to private lessons and studied under well-known local 
bassist Cindy Browne- Rosefield. High School was also the time he got his first experience 
playing in a band outside of school, when The Cooltones needed a sub for an upcoming gig, 
his father who was drumming for The Cooltones at the time, recommended Darren. 
Since then Darren has been playing with The Cooltones, The Don Veca Band, and 3 O'clock 
Jump and freelanced with other combos around the Bay Area.

Continuing Music in College, he graduated with two AA degrees; one in Music and one in Fine
Arts & Sciences. He has been giving private music lessons for guitar and bass throughout his 
music career since high school. He has marched percussion for London's New Year's Parade 
In 2005, he played bass for World Youth Day 2008 in Australia, and sung in college choir for a 
tour of Italy.  In military, he received more training at the Army School of Music for the 
electric bass and graduated to play for Camp Park's 191st Army Band where he still plays today.