Rich Lane retired after 50+ years in Manufacturing & Marketing to open Lakeland Piano, now known as Piano Alley. A stroke 10 years ago halted his ability to play but not his passion and determination to put the love of music in our children’s lives. He saw a need for placing this showroom in Central Florida. He felt that if he didn’t go forward with the dream, someone else would. He feels very fortunate to have this opportunity. Rich has always enjoyed being around music and has a reputation of being a people person.
As no man is an island, Lakeland Piano is fully staffed with very talented personnel from administration to sales to teaching to service. Get to know our “Team” by visiting our showroom.
Joe Fielder has been around music ever since he was born. His father ran his own piano and organ store. Joe grew up going to his concerts and listening to music ranging from the 20s to the 50s. Joe first took interest in learning to play an instrument when he was 13, but did not begin learning until he was 16. He has never had a lesson in his life … everything he knows is self-taught. Joe plays the guitar, bass guitar, piano, drums, cajon, djembe, organ, dobro and ukulele. He has worked in retail since he was 15 and moved pianos for his father’s company since he was 13. Joe has played concerts for groups ranging from 10 to 2000 people in nursing homes and big theaters. Joe joined Piano Alley in January 2017 as a sales associate.
Alex De La Torre is excited to help you reach your artistic potential! An alumnus of Southeastern University, Alex is an avid Musician/Actor in the Central Florida area. Past credits include DANNY ZUKO in GREASE, MORDRED in CAMELOT, MITCH MAHONEY (FTC award winner) in SPELLING BEE and RITCHIE VALENS in THE BUDDY HOLLY STORY. Alex was employed at Busch Gardens Tampa having performed in Soundsational!, Christmas From The Heart and Madagascar Live!
Alex currently instructs students at De La Torre Music Studios located in our showroom located at 2810 S. Florida Ave., Suite A, Lakeland. He is the Contemporary Worship Leader at Sunday Alive, musician for Nacion Santa and is the keyboardist for rock band SMOKEPOINT. Let Alex help you take your music ability to the next level! (Voice – Piano – Drumset)
Rachael Hamblin is a devoted music educator for students of all ages. She began teaching piano in high school after her personal instructor recommended that she begin taking on students of her own. Rachael continued teaching piano through high school and then had a short hiatus to pursue her music degree.
After earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education at Southeastern University, Rachael taught chorus at a Lakeland Middle School for three years. While she was there, she taught a wide range of chorus classes from Show Choir, to Men’s Chorus, to Advanced Women’s Chorus. The choirs under her direction achieved consistent Excellent and Superior ratings and performed in local community events. In 2015, Rachael transferred to South McKeel Academy to teach music to grades K-6.
Throughout her career, Rachael has maintained her passion for teaching piano. For the past seven years, Rachael has taught piano to a wide range of students from Kindergarten age to high school. Recently, her first student to audition for Harrison School for the Arts was accepted into the piano program to continue her musical study as a piano major. Rachael is excited to continue her love of teaching piano at Piano Alley.
Studying piano for over 15 years, Evan Eliason is well versed in classical, jazz, and all modern styles of keyboard performance. While graduating with a B.M. in Piano Performance, and a B.S. in Music Business, at Southeastern University in Lakeland, Florida, Evan has been teaching piano for over 5 years. His most recent mentors include internationally renowned Concert Pianist Dr. Young-Ah Tak (D.M.A., Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University), and Dr. Charles Hulin (D.M.A., Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University). This combination of experience and education has well equipped him to teach students of any age to achieve their specific musical goals. Please help us welcome Evan to our teaching staff here at Piano Alley effective February 2017.
Samantha was born in Lakeland, Florida and has remained an avid Lakelander her entire life. She has had a passion for music from a young age, and has carried out that passion in various ways. Samantha went to Harrison School for the Performing Arts, where she was in the Piano Department. Upon graduating, she taught piano privately for two years before transferring to The Florida State University to complete her bachelor’s degree. Samantha also is involved in her church’s worship team, where she has been the keyboard player for ten years. Having over 20 years of experience playing the piano, Samantha enjoys working with others to help their passion of music flourish. Samantha joined our teaching staff here at Piano Alley last year.
Jay Nerove is owner and principal instructor of JaM Guitar Studio – a music school specializing in guitar and bass instruction. JaM Guitar Studio has been in Polk County for 17 years offering lessons and performance opportunities. Jay also teaches for the Fine Arts School of Central Florida. He has performed with students at Polk State College and at various community events (Winter Haven’s Art and Soul Festival, Lakeland’s Kelly Rec Center, Dundee’s Relay for Life, and many others).
Jay’s goal is to help individuals of all ages (5-100) to achieve their own dreams – whether it is to perform professionally or just jam with friends and family. All instruction is age appropriate and designed to meet the goals of each individual. Any genre of music (rock, country, folk, classical, neo-classical, jazz, finger style, praise and worship, metal) can be explored and mastered by the student. Improvisation is also taught along with music theory.
Jay has joined our teaching staff here at Piano Alley located at 2810 S. Florida Ave., Suite A, in Lakeland. He will also be teaching music programs for home schooled children in a class setting here in our studios. Jay can be contacted at 863-514-0417. Please contact Jay for starting dates, times and locations.
Ralph Sluyter is a classically trained pianist who now specializes in playing jazz piano. Originally from New Zealand, Ralph grew taking piano examination through ABRSM or Trinity College London. These prestigious schools send out examiners all over the world where candidates are examined under rigorous quantitative standards. His piano qualifications include:
- 2011 Grade 8 (the final grade) with merit from the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music
- 2013 Advanced Certificate from Trinity College, London
- 2015 ATCL in Piano Performance (Associate of Trinity College, London)
Ralph has also been a church accompanist since 2004 for churches in Florida, Oregon and his home church in New Zealand. For the last 3 years, he has been working with Dan Delaney, jazz instructor, with online monthly lessons. With that knowledge, Ralph has been playing around the Lakeland area. With over 15 years of teaching experience, his goal is to give his students a solid musical foundation, to increase their confidence with playing, and to love playing the piano.
Ralph joined Piano Alley’s teaching staff on April 22, 2017. He is our only instructor offering Saturday lessons at this time.