Saxophonist and composer Michel Nirenberg, a native of Rio de Janeiro, has been carving out a niche in the Washington, DC jazz scene since coming to the United States in 2012. He has already made a name for himself in Brazil, performing in many festivals and winning in competitions throughout the country while earning a bachelor’s degree in music at the top of his class from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ). In 2014, he graduated with a master’s degree in music from James Madison University, where he was a teaching assistant and active performer. Long before graduation, he was playing with top performers in both countries.
Nirenberg was raised in a family of musicians and studied music since childhood. Becoming a musician was a natural path for him to take. His father plays viola in the Brazilian Symphony Orchestra based in Rio and teaches chamber music at UFRJ. His mother is a gifted pianist who also became a teacher.
His paternal grandfather, Jaques Nirenberg, was a doctor and also a respected violinist with the Brazilian String Quartet. For over five decades they performed in concert halls around the world, including Carnegie Hall and Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Michel would study classical piano, violin, guitar and clarinet before taking up the saxophone at age 15. The horn was a gift from his parents. Although many family members play music, Michel was unique in making that his primary occupation.
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Teacher at B&B Music School since June 2014 – currently teaches
saxophone, clarinet, piano and flute as well as music theory, harmony and ear
Teaching Assistant at James Madison University, 2012-‐2014 – taught
chamber music and private saxophone lessons as well as master classes of
general saxophone repertoire and Brazilian music
- Private Teacher – teaches piano, clarinet, and saxophone as well as theory,
harmony and ear training since 2008
- James Madison University, Harrisonburg VA: Chamber Music, Saxophone
Teaching, and Brazilian Music, 2012 - 2014
Eliézer Steinberg - Max Nordau High School, Rio de Janeiro Brazil: Different
types of saxophones and general woodwinds, 2011