Ph.D. Composition & Music Theory
Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory, 1989
Honors: Maxima Cum Laude (4.0 GPA)
Masters in Pedagogy, Music Theory, Piano
Moscow Schnittke Institute of Music, 1982
Honors: Maxima Cum Laude (4.0 GPA)
Khachaturian Composition Award
4 Time Winner: 1986, 87, 88, 89
USSR Ministry of Culture Award
1985, Moscow, Russia
Advanced Piano, Music Composition, Orchestration & Instrumentation, Sequencing & Audio Mastering
Aleksey Nikolsky, Ph.D.
Advanced Piano, Music Composition, Co-Founder of Synergo Music Method
Aleksey Nikolsky is a Russian composer, musicologist, and specialist in psychoacoustics and developmental cognitive sciences. His life has been a unique combination of deep study and first-hand experience in making music of all kinds, including popular and folkloric music.
Aleksey began improvising his first compositions at the age of 7. At 11, he began formally studying piano and composition. By the time he was 14, he had earned degrees in Accordion Performance, Piano Performance, and Choral Singing from the Igumnov Music School and the Shchedrin School of Music, both with honors.
At 18, Aleksey received a Master's Degree in Music Theory, Pedagogy and Piano from the Moscow Schnittke Institute of Music, also with honors. This certified him to teach in primary music and general schools throughout the USSR, where he taught the Kabalevsky Instruction Method in the general school system in Moscow.
In search of a mentor capable of guiding him in composition, Aleksey was fortunate to find Edison Denisov. From 1979 until Denisov's tragic death in Paris (1996), they maintained a close relationship. For political reasons, until 1994, Denisov was disallowed to teach composition in the USSR, so he continued to give Aleksey private lessons, and suggested that he enter the Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Roman Ledenev’s class.
In 1985, Aleksey then entered the Moscow Conservatory, where he studied for 5 years, majoring in Composition and Music Theory. A year into his studies, he participated in an expedition to southern Moldova to collect and research the music tradition of old Orthodox Christian settlers in Izmail. The material collected in this expedition served him well for writing a suite of a'cappella choirs.
In 1989, Aleksey graduated from the Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory with honors, where he received numerous awards including 4 consecutive Khachaturian Composition Awards. In 1990, he attended the newly opened Moscow University of History of Culture. He was recommended by the department of composition for post-graduate studies, but half a year later, he instead accepted an offer to become the Composer in Residence of the newly founded Orquesta de Baja California.
In Mexico, Aleksey worked out an innovative method of ear training – putting it to test with local children. In 1993, he became interested in a unique program of systematic musicology at UCLA, which brought him to Los Angeles. Access to the UCLA library's newest materials led Aleksey to discover an emerging science of biomusicology. This prompted him to put a hold on composition, and to devote himself entirely to building a method of teaching music as a language system to capitalize on innate human abilities to comprehend music and to naturally acquire music skills. His experience with the Kabalevsky system in the USSR, and Yamaha method in the USA, helped serve Aleksey to formulate the Synergo Music Method – his own method of teaching music, from absolute beginners up to advanced piano performance.
Today, Aleksey is currently completing his pivotal work "The Encyclopedia of Rhythm and Meter" alongside his private piano and composition instruction.
Studied Music Composition with David Raksin
USC Thornton School of Music, 1979-1983
Bachelors of Music, Piano Performance
B.Mus. Royal Academy of Music, London, 1977
First Prize LMU Film Festival, Los Angeles
Film Score: "The Duet", 1980
Music Composition, Musical Methodology, Teaching Young Children, Children Psychology, Educational Counseling
Beginner and Intermediate Piano, Co-Founder of Synergo Music Method
Composer and pedagogue, Sheila Bazleh began piano lessons at the age of 7. At 15, Sheila left for England to continue her general education and music training at Mickelfields, in Sussex, and later continued her advanced piano studies with Martino Terimo at the Royal Academy of Music, in London, where she earned her Bachelors of Music. It was Mr. Terimo’s recommendation that Sheila be awarded an overseas scholarship by the Persian Ministry of Arts and Culture.
At 23, her 4-hands piano composition "Caspasia" was nationally broadcasted on Iranian National Television. She was selected by the Oscar-winning director, Victor Stoloff, to represent Iran in his international series: “Women of the World” – in the segment: “Women of Iran”.
In 1977, Sheila came to the States where she has since resided. She attended USC taking film music with the Oscar winning composer, David Raksin. At UCLA, she took courses in conducting, acting and film music. She also attended Jack Segal’s songwriting classes, in Hollywood. In 1980 she won the “Best Original Film Music Award” at the LMU Film Festival.
Her CD of piano solo works, “Hidden Path to a Persian Garden”, has had international distribution through Tower Records and Virgin Records (1994-96), winning her the title “Artist of the Year” by the Kayhan International.
Sheila’s works have been acknowledged by Her Royal Highness Farah Pahlavi – the former queen of Iran. Her “Reflections Awakened” – a set of 12 songs for voice and piano, with the purpose to unite classical music and traditional Persian poetry, was praised by Lotfi Mansouri – former Artistic Director of the San Francisco Opera.
Sheila’s works include music written for various chamber settings and theater: “Do you Turn Somersaults?” – a play by Alexei Arbuzov, in Theater 40, Beverly Hills (1991). Her chamber works have been performed at Wattis Room of Davis Symphony Hall, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Beverly Hills Presbyterian Church, Cal State Northridge and UC San Diego, amongst other places.
Sheila has appeared as a guest on numerous national and international radio and television programs, including BBC International, Radio France International, Voice of America, Radio Prague International, SBS Radio Australia International, PBS San Francisco, and many more.
Since 1980, Sheila has been teaching piano and music privately, specializing in very young children. She has also taught numerous children's music educational programs in the Malibu-Santa Monica School District, working with thousands of children.
In 2000, she ran a column “Music and Mother” in the “Progressive Woman” section of Irandokht periodical. In this column, Sheila wrote articles on children's education and family management, as well as answering common parenting questions. Sheila has also given numerous lectures on the topic of children's education and music.
Sheila’s extensive background working with children, music composition, and piano performance makes her a highly sought-after instructor for piano and music studies. Today, she is working with her husband Aleksey Nikolsky on completing their Synergo Music Method literature, available soon!