Max started on a musical path at a young age. As a child, he was enraptured by the works of Brahms and Haydn and he would constantly watch tapes of the London Symphony Orchestra performing their works. At the age of three, Max took up the cello and studied it diligently until the age of seven when his teacher moved away. To his dismay, there was a shortage of cello teachers willing to work with a student so young. Rather than give up entirely, Max saw this as an opportunity to learn something new. It was then that he began his study of the guitar, a study that he continues to this day.
Max studied classical guitar at the Bellevue School of Music for three years, often playing recitals at Beneroya Hall. At the age of 10, he discovered the Blues and began playing more electric and modern styles on the guitar. Once Max had reached high school, he was deeply immersed in Blues and Jazz. In 2011, Max performed with his high school quintet at the Moscow Jazz Festival. He was invited to the main stage to open the first night of student bands. It was also in high school that Max began his work as a private teacher, working as a Teaching Assistant in the younger Jazz ensembles and coaching many of the schools freshman and sophomore guitarists.
After leaving high school, Max attended Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle to study Jazz guitar and composition. During his time there, Max was invited to perform with acts such as Brad Shepik, and the Marty Ehrlich big band residency. During his Junior year, Max traveled to the University College Cork in Western Ireland to spend a year studying Irish Folk music. Max grew up in an Irish family, as both his parents are from Western Ireland, so this music style is close to his heart. In 2016, Max graduated Magna Cum Laude from Cornish, and left with an extremely diversified musical pallet.
Since graduating Max has continued his involvement at Cornish as a music scribe for the disabled, a resident composer and an accompanist for music students. He has also been invited back to perform, most notably at a farewell concert for composing faculty member and Jazz department founder Jim Knapp, who retired in early 2017. Through his countless studies, Max can attribute his success to an intense passion and drive for learning. A passion for learning goes hand in hand with a passion for teaching, and helping students navigate that same musical path that entices every music educator.
Days at Klahanie: Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays