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My mission for K.K.D.A. is to foster a community of drummers, where I can pass on my passion and knowledge of playing the drums, while providing students with the tools to enjoy a lifelong relationship with drumming.

Playing the drums has shaped my life as much as anything while bringing me endless joy. I’ve been blessed to make a career out of being a professional drummer, so I take great pride in giving students my knowledge and coaching. I have spent the last decade teaching drum lessons to people of all ages and skill levels. Through this experience, as well as taking private lessons since the age of 8, I have tailored my program to make learning the drums accessible and fun! It has been my goal for a long time to develop the most comprehensive drum program in my community. I’m very proud to say that Kirk Kalbfleisch Drum Academy will offer students exactly that. 

My teaching philosophy is based on three important pillars: Mentorship. Development. Joy. 


Mentorship: Connecting with my students is why I teach. I believe that I have a responsibility to each of my students to do my best for them in every lesson. I understand that my mentorship for students will greatly influence their relationship with music. It is this fact that motivates me to always show up for my students and provide them with the energy and communication they deserve. My students will understand that I am invested in their learning process and development. It’s also important that my students understand that I care about them on a personal level. While my hope is for each student to feel successful at playing drums, it’s far more important to me that my student’s feel supported in their lessons! I strongly believe that only people passionate about teaching should teach. 


Development: On day one of lessons with me, I teach proficiency. It is important in my philosophy to give all my students a great technical foundation to build on. Right out the gate, I will be helping students understand rhythmic vocabulary, body mechanics, how to read and count drum notation, while providing them with exercises that will develop their control on the drums. It is my belief through experience, that students that start with this foundation are more successful in a shorter period, and will continue to learn more efficiently compared to students that skip passed these foundational skills. In my lessons I call this “getting out of our own way” in order to make the process of learning more enjoyable while taking on more challenging skills. 


Students will be taught the importance of developing musicality: using rhythmic vocabulary to support the music, style, and balance of the groove. This is how we make music feel good! As the student learns more technical rudiments and skills, we will always bring it back to the idea of creating a better sound in our groove playing. Eventually it is my goal for students to work towards creating their own unique voice on the drums. 


Joy: There is a reason that every student wants to start learning how to play drums and that is based on their unique joy that connects them to the instrument. It is my goal to always connect my teaching back to that joyful feeling that made students want to learn how to drum in the first place. Student’s interests in what they want to learn or improve on the drums can be so varied. So it’s important to me to customize our lessons together based on what makes you excited. Whether that goal is learning your favorite artist’s music, helping with a specific style of music on the drums, or striving to be a professional drummer, I tailor our lessons to you!

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