The Ethos Philosophy
Everyone loves music (of some sort) and every individual has the capacity to understand and participate in it.
While the factors that limit musical success are too numerous to list here, we have learned three axioms that lead to success in this art:
The best musicians develop from mastering music through a structured and complete curriculum presented by an engaged and interested teacher.
The best musicians begin and end with constant parental participation. As with most things, the personal and introspective worth of an art is appreciated only after its value is absorbed through social interaction and approval.
The best musicians flourish by sharing their skills with others through performance, adjudication, and competition.
We have learned that adherence to these principles builds strong character and important life skills in people of all ages. Neuroscience has also proven that disciplined musical study improves brain function.
The Ethos Mission
To develop life-long musicians through precise, patient, and passionate musical training.
Our Slogan: Musica Liberator Animae (Music, Liberator of the Soul)
Our Motto: Imagine, Invent, Inspire
History of Ethos
Every year, Ethos evolves as we learn more about music education and its profound effects on human development.
Founded in The Woodlands, Texas, in 2004, Ethos espouses a philosophy of teaching that focuses on constant growth and exploration. Ensuring that both teachers and students are constantly learning and challenging themselves to excel to the next level, Ethos has been able to produce lifelong musicians, many of whom have continued on to professional careers in music. Since 2004, we have grown into a school with dozens of students across many disciplines and fields of study. Our students have the unique opportunity to work and collaborate together through our vital programs. In 2019, Ethos moved into its own 4,000 square foot campus built on 3 beautiful acres. We pride ourselves on using only Steinway brand and Steinway designed instruments for our piano lessons and all performances.
Khoren Ouzounian, began musical studies at the age of 5. He had already fallen in love with music because of the influence of his older sisters who all played instruments and/or sang. Khoren knew that music study had helped him in school and he performed well in all of his classes, always graduating in the top tier of students both in high school and in college. It wasn’t until Khoren was well into his 30’s and married with 5 children that he discovered that he had attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, also known as ADHD. After meeting with many psychologists, psychiatrists, and neurologists, it was agreed that music study had masked or severely diminished many of the detrimental effects of ADHD in Khoren’s childhood. By this time, Khoren had been teaching piano for nearly 20 years, and had already codified many of his observations about neurological and musical development into his practice as a teacher. He continues to pursue this area of research as neurologists have continued to come to the realization that music study has a profound impact on brain development, cognition, and retention.
Ethos Faculty Bios
Douglas Loomis (Piano, Music Theory)
With over 20 years of pianistic training and experience, Douglas Loomis is a skilled pianist and accomplished teacher from Conroe, Texas. Douglas holds a Bachelor’s degree in Piano Performance from Southwestern University. He joined Ethos School of Music soon after graduating and his teachers have included Kiyoshi Tamagawa, David Englert, and Khoren Ouzounian. Douglas is devoted to helping musicians reach their highest potential. This has included teaching music theory camps, leading music ensembles, accompanying at high schools, and adjudicating for music events. He is also instilling the love of music in children through early childhood music classes.
Teresa Matchett (Cello, Music Theory, Chamber Music)
Teresa L. Matchett earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Houston, graduating cum laude in cello performance in 1987. Her cello studies were with Martha Gerschefski, Hans Jensen, and Anthony Elliot. Her performing positions have included principal cello of the Lake Charles Symphony and assistant principal cello of the Theater Under the Stars orchestra.
She is a past president of the Houston Area Suzuki Strings Association (now STXSA), and works actively to organize events for young musicians. She teaches students of all ages starting as young as 3 years old, and her older students are regularly chosen as members of the Texas Junior High and High School (region 9) Region Orchestras, as well as the Texas All State Orchestras. Teresa has completed all of her Suzuki training for cello through level 10, as well as Suzuki Principles in Action, and the Cello Practicum. She also teaches Suzuki Early Childhood Education, and Music Mind Games (music theory) in Houston, Sugar Land, and The Woodlands area of Texas. She an active member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas, Southeast Texas Suzuki Association, American String Teachers Association, and Texas Music Educators Association.
Stephanie Miess (RCM Smart Start)
Stephanie Miess has taught children in music, dance, and in the school system for 30 years. She graduated in Dance Education with a math minor and has training in the Kodaly method and with the Royal Conservatory’s Smart Start program. She sings, plays the flute, piano, and Irish whistle, but considers her primary instrument her body. She owns a Creative Arts Academy, in Magnolia which offers dance, art classes and is privileged to be partnered with Ethos and their music program. She has lead choirs and children music in a church setting and has composition training has written, children songs, hymns and other choral arrangements. She has a great love for children and teaching and has five grown children of her own and has a string quartet and fiddling band in her family. She love’s her three grand children, exercise, cooking, and church service.
Khoren Ouzounian (Piano, Organ, Composition, Music Theory, Chamber Music, MusiCore, RCM Smart Start)
Khoren Ouzounian is a nationally recognized educator, composer, conductor, organist, pianist, and entrepreneur. As the founder of the Ethos School of Music, his students have successfully enrolled in conservatory and college music programs throughout the United States and he is well recognized for his work as a teacher-trainer and master class presenter. His philosophy and methodology in teaching has garnered international recognition and acclaim at such events as the World Piano Pedagogy Conference and his contributions have been published in The American Music Teacher, the journal of the Music Teacher’s National Association. Khoren’s compositions and arrangements have been published and presented by Celebration USA™, Faiths United of the Woodlands, and in LDS church services throughout the U.S. Khoren holds a Master’s in Music from Rice University where he specialized in piano performance and composition. He also studied piano performance and pedagogy at Houston Baptist University and at Brigham Young University where he also majored in comparative literature and economics.
As a performer and collaborator, Khoren has performed extensively throughout the United States both conducting and performing solo and collaboratively on organ and piano. Most recently, he has launched a chamber music series in The Woodlands in conjunction with Glade Art Gallery where he has been hosted many times. Because of his foreign language and comparative literature training, Khoren is fluent in Italian, French, and conversant in German, making him highly sought after as a vocal coach.
Konrad Rudowicz (Violin, Viola, Music Theory, Chamber Music)
Konrad Rudowicz was born in Łódź, Poland, and began his violin studies at the age of seven. Recently he received his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Houston, where he studied under the tutelage of Dr. Kirsten Yon. Additionally, he holds degrees and certificates from the Hochschule für Musik und Theater “Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy” in Leipzig, Germany, Academy of Music in Łódź, Poland, and Azusa Pacific University in Los Angeles, California. Throughout his career, Konrad had an opportunity to perform in prestigious concert halls, including Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Gewandhaus Leipzig, Konzerthaus Berlin, Shanghai Oriental Art Center, Bozar Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels, and Jones Hall in Houston, and to participate in lessons and masterclasses led by distinguished violinists, such as William Preucil, Brian Lewis, Leon Spierer, Kristof Barati and Wanda Wiłkomirska.
Konrad was awarded first prize in the Young Artists Competition held by the Redlands Bowl Association in Redlands, California (2014) and fourth prize in the Young Violinist Competition held in Łódź, Poland (2001). He maintains an active solo, chamber and orchestral concert schedule, performing frequently in the United States and Europe. Among his significant solo appearances are performances with the Wieniawski String Orchestra in Łódź (2008), at the Redlands Music Festival in the Redlands Bowl, California (2014), and at the Preis für die Freiheit und Zukunft der Medien (Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media) ceremony in the presence of Leipzig’s mayor, Burkhard Jung in Leipzig (2018.)
Konrad is also active in the field of pedagogy, currently serving as an Adjunct Professor at the San Jacinto College, and as a violin and viola teacher at the Humble Independent School district.
Boheng Wang (Piano)
Boheng Wang, a native of Jinan, China, where she began her piano studies at the age of five. She is a classically trained pianist with diverse experience in solo and chamber performance, choral accompanying, piano teaching, and audio recording. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in piano performance under Dr. Tali Morgulis at the University of Houston.
In 2022, Boheng received a bachelor’s degree in piano performance with honors from the University of Colorado – Boulder where she studied with Dr. Andrew Cooperstock. She also studied harpsichord and voice as secondary instruments and served as the treasurer for the Collegiate Chapter of MTNA at CU Boulder. She was a recipient of the Scott McBurney Memorial Scholarship and Everett J. Hilty, Sr. Music Scholarship. During her undergraduate studies at CU Boulder, she worked on the “Hidden Voices Project” led by Dr. Alejandro Cremaschi, where she recorded pieces by African American female composers, and did research on them from a pedagogical perspective. She premiered works for the piano by composers in the CU Boulder community at the Pendulum New Music concert.
As a teacher, Boheng is passionate about bringing classical music one step closer to people of all age groups and backgrounds. Her goal is to develop the student’s skills at the piano while nurturing their unique strength and personality in music.
Codi Wartenbach (Cello, Viola)
Codi Wartenbach started studying music at age 6. He has studied cello for 14+ years, viola for 3+ years, and composition for 2 years. He graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University with a bachelor’s degree in music education in 2019, where he took lessons in cello, viola, and composition. During college, he performed in Symphony Orchestra, Chamber Ensembles, Cello Studio recitals, Cello Choir recitals, Composition Studio recitals, and a Solo Cello Recital. He has completed Core Training with the Suzuki Association and is pursuing continued education in the Suzuki Method.
Outside of teaching and performing, Codi continues to make art in many forms, including writing, painting, drawing, crafting, and composing music. Recordings of Codi’s original compositions can be found on soundcloud.com by searching their full name or username “CodiJWBach”. His love for creativity also drove him to start a small business in 2020 selling hand-crafted miniatures, which currently averages over 500 orders per year. Their shop can be found at etsy.com/shop/cojiscrittercrafts.
Codi strongly identifies with the Ethos model and has become integral to many Ethos programs since joining the faculty in 2021. His warmth and passion for sharing music with those around him bring a special energy to his teaching. His goal as an educator is to foster a positive and supportive environment that allows young musicians to expand their talent and love for music.
Halle Yap (Cello, Chamber Music)
Born and raised in the Houston area, Halle Yap began playing the cello at the age of 8. She is an experienced cellist with over 10 years of performance experience. A winner of many awards in high school and college, Halle is a graduate of Baylor University where she focused on the study and performance of chamber and small ensemble music. In 2018, she was a finalist in the Sempre Pro Musica competition for chamber music held at Baylor University. She is passionate about sharing her love, appreciation, and knowledge of music with her students and peers.
Xinruo Wei (Piano, Chamber Music)
Ms. Xinruo Wei is a prize-winner of competitions. She won the 1st prize as a collaborative pianist in the Voice Virtuoso Competition in 2021. She also got the 2nd prize in the Tennessee Music Teachers Association Collegiate Piano Solo Competition in 2021.
Not only is she an active pianist, Ms. Wei is also an experienced teacher. Her students range from 5-year old kids to adults. Students always appreciate her professional instruction and patient teaching style. In her piano lessons, students can learn the beauty of music in a joyful environment.
Wei is always under the instruction of professors who graduated from the most famous music schools, such as Julliard School and Yale University. She obtained the Bachelor’s degree in piano performance from East Tennessee State University, in (teacher’s name)’s studio. Wei is currently doing the Master’s degree in collaborative piano in the University of Houston, studying with Timothy Hester.
Dedicated in collaborative art, Wei has been working with vocalists and instrumentalists from all over the world. She also serves as the pianist in choirs and operas at school and church. She believes that music can connect people and construct a positive community.
At Ethos, we utilize most of the Royal Conservatory of Music curriculum. We have tailored RCM’s offerings to our own in order to craft a comprehensive body of knowledge for our students.
Our curriculum covers three areas of musical mastery with two sub-masteries in each category. Thorough training in each of these areas enables students to do much more than play an instrument. They will be able to approach music in a holistic manner.
Musicianship (Audiation MLT)
A. Ear Training
i. Understanding and Writing what is heard.
B. Eye Training
i. Hearing and Reproducing what is seen.
ii. Score Reading/Sight Singing
iv. Socio-Political Issues
i. Effective Practice Habits
ii. Technical Mastery
iii. Repertoire Development
At The Ethos School of Music we approach education based on the humanistic model of the Renaissance philosophers. It is a mixture of apprenticeship repetition, formal theoretical instruction, and Socratic inquiry. Because we engage the students in private as well as small and large group settings, we are able to gauge the strengths and weaknesses of each musician and pace their lessons accordingly. Additionally, through individual assessment and exposure to a master teacher, we identify and cater to the individual learning styles (visual, auditory or kinesthetic) of each student.