Patrick Lapinski

Owner, Drums, Guitar, Bass, Piano, Ukulele

Patrick is one of the owners of Noteworthy Academy of Music. He has a BA in Music Education with a concentration in classical percussion from William Paterson University. Patrick has been teaching drums, percussion, guitar, ukulele, bass and piano for over seven years while still performing in professional bands, musicals, orchestras and the Bethany church worship team.

Rebecca Lapinski

Owner, Voice, Piano

Rebecca is one of the owners of Noteworthy Academy of Music. She has a BFA in Musical Theatre from Montclair State University and has been teaching voice, piano and acting for years. Her students have gone on to the Papermill Playhouse Conservatory, been on the Bethany Worship team, earned leading roles, and they all learn to use their skills to the fullest! Rebecca has been seen performing all over the country in productions such as "Bright Star" (Alice Murphy), "Ragtime", "Once" and "Alway's Patsy Cline". In addition to Rebecca's professional performing career and teaching, you will always find her serving on the Bethany Church Worship team.

Steve Monk


Steve has been playing saxophone his entire life, studying at Brevard College and performing and teaching in various styles from jazz to classical. Steve has also received a BM in Vocal Performance from Westminster Choir College. Steve is one of the worship leaders at Bethany Church where he plays the sax, guitar and sings.



John "Drace" Dracy

Guitar, Bass, Piano, Drums

John has been studying and performing music all of his life, starting with the guitar and expanding to the piano, drums and bass from there. He has performed in bands and other ensembles around NJ and you can find John leading teams of musicians at Bethany Church. John has a heart to teach the next generation of musicians, which you can see as he leads middle school and high school musicians on the Bethany Youth Worship Team. In addition to his teaching and performing, John also has a sound engineering degree from The School of Audio Engineering. 

Nicole Verrengia


Nicole has been playing piano since early elementary school (Fun Fact- She and Miss Rebecca took lessons from the same piano teacher!). She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from Caldwell University. While working in promotions for WPLJ 95.5 in Manhattan, she assisted in events with such artists as Taylor Swift and Rihanna. She currently serves on the Bethany Church Worship Team, and has been working with their kids’ ministries for six years.

Nick Sagnella

Guitar, Bass, Ukulele, Piano

Nick holds his degree from William Paterson University studying in the prestigious Jazz program, focusing on guitar and performance. He has been performing professionally for over 10 years in various musical styles from jazz to rock and classical. When Nick is not performing, he is pouring his passion for music into his students here at Noteworthy! 

Chris Hutter

Drums, Piano

Chris has been a public school band director for 17 years. He graduated from Berklee College of Music in Boston with a B.A. in Music Business. He received his teacher certification from the College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY.  Subsequently he has received two Masters degrees; the first- a Masters of Art and Teaching from CUNY Lehman in the Bronx, and the second - a Masters in School Leadership with Principal Certification from Montclair State University. Chris has performed in several rock, jazz, and big bands.

Giuliana Carr


Giuliana Carr started learning the piano at 3 years old and never looked back! She has worked as a music director for concerts & productions, written jingles for fashion & online brands, taught children’s piano classes & workshops, and written/performed her own original music featured in live concerts & sketch comedy shows. She is also a trained saxophonist. Giuliana is also a professional actor and can be seen in multiple films currently circling film festivals around the country, and recently originated the role of Hannah Stern in Jenny Lyn Bader’s hit play “Mrs. Stern Wanders the Prussian State Library.” She is very excited to join the passionate and talented staff & students at Noteworthy. 

Curtis Jaeger

Piano, Strings, Voice

Curtis has been a student and teacher of music for years, but began his undergraduate education at West Chester University of Pennsylvania with a duel degree in B.A. Theatre Studies and a B.M. in Music, later transferring into the B.F.A Musical Theatre program at Montclair State University. He is an accomplished  accompanist, music director, arranger, and has tutored in music theory and aural skills on top of the instruments he teaches. Curtis has also been seen performing on stage and in pits all over the country. Curtisjaeger.com

Joseph "JQ" Quiles

Bass, Piano, Guitar, Ukulele

Joseph Quiles, JQ for short, discovered his love for music at a young age and has been pursuing his career as a professional musician ever since. Joseph is a multi instrumentalist, playing bass, piano, guitar and ukulele. He has worked with well renowned gospel artists and he has toured and played in bands across the country. Joseph has a heart for inspiring kids in music, and igniting their passion to take them to the next level.  He has music directed at numerous churches, bringing his musicality and communication skills with him wherever he goes. With a passion for teaching, Joseph is looking forward to bringing innovation to Noteworthy.

Brooke Garfinkel


Brooke Garfinkel works as a teaching artist, director, arts administrator and actress, and has performed and taught on both the east and west coasts. Her passion truly lies in utilizing theatre education to help students find their voices and self-confidence while building effective communication and collaboration skills. She attended Montclair State University where she graduated Magna Cum Laude with an honors Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Acting. She is currently pursuing her Master of Arts in Arts Administration with Rowan University. She has taught with Montclair State University, the Marin Shakespeare Company and Riverside Theatre Arts previously, and is very proud to currently be teaching for and working with George Street Playhouse, McCarter Theatre Center, and Aspire Performing Arts. She is delighted to be a part of the Noteworthy team!

Michael Lasris


Michael is excited to be joining the Noteworthy Academy team this year! Originally from Yorktown, VA, Michael has worked as a professional performer, director, and choreographer across the nation, most recently serving as the Resident Choreographer for Midtown Arts Center in Fort Collins, CO for nearly a decade. For his work, Michael has been nominated for several BroadwayWorld Awards (winning for Miss Saigon), Henry Awards (A Christmas Story), and Metrolina Theatre Awards (winning for Pirates of Penzance). Favorite roles include Andy Lee (42nd Street), Tateh (Ragtime), and Lord Farquaad (Shrek). Favorite choreography credits include Dames at Sea, A Christmas Story, Rock of Ages, and Legally Blonde.


In addition to performing, Michael has also had the pleasure of teaching dance, acting, and musical theatre techniques for nearly twenty years. Michael's students have gone on to attend Juilliard, Point Park University, and Oklahoma City University, and are currently working professionally in regional houses, national tours, cruise ships, and Broadway stages! Michael holds a BFA in Musical Theatre with a minor in Dance from Catawba College in Salisbury, NC.