Matt Rathkey is a saxophonist and composer who received his M.Mus. in Jazz Studies from the University of Northern Colorado in 2019, where he studied performance, composition, improvisation, history, and pedagogy under the tutelage of Kenyon Brenner, Jim White, Steve Kovalcheck, Drew Zaremba, Erik Applegate, and David Caffey. Prior to graduate school he attended Carleton College where he studied classical piano performance for four years under Kenneth Huber, graduating in 2013 with BAs in Music and Mathematics. In addition to playing jazz gigs along the Front Range he also leads and composes for his own ensemble called No Hands Brass Band, which has performed at Dazzle and the City Park Jazz festival in Denver.
Matt has taught piano, saxophone, clarinet, theory and composition in the Denver metro area for over 2 years. His musical tastes encompass all of classical and jazz music and he is comfortable teaching either discipline. He believes good ears are the most important skill for any musician to have and incorporates ear training games into every lesson. Contrary to popular opinion, ear training is a learnable skill! Matt’s passion for music has led him to develop a deep knowledge of its history and practice, ranging from Johann Sebastian Bach to John Coltrane, and he loves to answer all sorts of musical questions and spark curiosity in others. Why is Beethoven considered important? How did the harpsichord fall out of fashion? What's the difference between bebop and swing? Ask away!
When not immersed in music, Matt enjoys bouldering indoors and outdoors in spite of his crippling fear of heights.