Christina Landolt ’02

Music Instructor

As a musician, I love a wide variety of musical styles. I have spent time studying the music of other cultures, and was involved with the film music industry (as a composer, conductor, and cellist) while I lived in Los Angeles. I also wrote supportive music for local rock bands. Before coming back to Andover as a teacher, I worked for an advertising agency as a graphic designer and spent time working in a pit crew for a race car. These days, in addition to playing and composing music, I spend a lot of time painting, baking, and enjoying nature. I have an avid interest in promoting ecological consciousness, and believe we should support the natural world in whatever ways we can.

I am most inspired by the students who look me in the eye and say, “I don’t want to be here.” Most often what they mean is that their previous experience studying music was focused on a style of music they disliked and that they’re not thrilled at the idea of being graded on a subject in which they believe one is either gifted or not. Yet when I ask what they listened to on their iPhones on the way to class, every one of them has an answer. Then we have a way to begin.

Recently, it was Taylor Swift. You can’t imagine my joy when, at Family Weekend, a mother told me that her daughter had interrupted their conversation in the car to crank up Taylor Swift’s newest single in order to explain to her mother exactly how auto-tuning and upbeat synthesized drums had helped Taylor transition into a “pop” artist—something we had discussed on the first day of class.

My favorite part of this job is convincing students that they do have a voice in music, that their observations are valid, and that they can cultivate their listening skills into a more sophisticated opinion about the aesthetics of the musical world around them. The excitement for me as a teacher is that accomplishing this goal will require me to find a different path for each and every student.

Reprinted from Andover magazine.

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