Marissa Messina is a Piano and Voice Teacher at Gray School of Music
Marissa Messina brings more than 25 years’ experience teaching piano and voice for all ages and levels of learning. Her teaching experience started when she was a college student and former founder of Messina Studios. It is there where her students’ recitals incorporated a drama, ensemble, and musical theater to build the whole musician. They featured all genres and styles of music from classical to contemporary.
Marissa received her Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance at Southern Methodist University. She received a merit scholarship under the tutelage of DSO artist-in-residence Alfred Mouledous. Two full stipend/scholarships to study with acclaimed international pianist and recording artist Lili Kraus, founding board member and judge of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition and artist-in-residence at TCU, were awarded to her while attending there to receive her Master of Music in Piano Performance.
At a young age, Marissa was awarded study with artist Elaine de Kooning. From childhood, Marissa studied extensively with esteemed Fulbright scholar and winner Dr. Donna O’Steen Edwards.
While at TCU on stipend, she became co-teacher with Dr. Edwards, both for campus TCU students and for Dr. Edwards private studio.
Marissa studied voice with Dr. Joan Wall at Texas Women’s University with focus on opera, cabaret, musical theatre and contemporary styles. Adrianna Hardy and drama and vocal coach Arthur Lessac have been her vocal coaches.
Marissa takes pleasure and pride in molding the “total musician” for any age, musical interest or endeavor and in imparting a well-rounded awareness and joy of music as a lifelong lifestyle. In fact, over the years, she often hears from and loves to keep up with former students who have continued to report on their love of music or professional careers in the field. Examples include a jazz/pop vocalist award recipient of the Muhammed Ali Award, a cabaret NYC circuit vocalist, and a community college piano instructor.
Marissa comes from a family of music enthusiasts. Her grandfather from Italy was first chair clarinet with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Her father was a vocal student of renowned Baron Curci and held first chair clarinet with the Los Angeles Community Student Orchestra at a time when John Philip Sousa was commissioned a commemorative composition for the group.
In addition to teaching, Marissa works as a professional artist and also enjoys freelance writing and composing.