After-School Programs

Music Lessons

Burke's is proud of its talented and dedicated after-school music instructors! Lessons are open to new students by application and when there is availability. Please contact Ms. Q for more information! 

Piano Instructors

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  • Janis Mercer

    Janis Mercer has been teaching for over 25 years to students of all ages and levels. With a B.M. and M.M. in Music, she has also been a pianist and composer for most of her life. Ms. Mercer's experience ranges from young beginners taking private lessons, to chamber music coaching and theory/aural skills training. In addition, she has led master classes and given lectures on her music and others' at the university level. She has worked in a variety of environments: schools, students’ homes, her home studio, and community music centers. She teaches students from a variety of socio-economic backgrounds, ethnicities and cultures. She teaches gifted students and those with learning disabilities and is comfortable in a private or group setting. She has prepared students for ABRSM piano and theory exams. Finally, Ms. Mercer mentors former students, writing letters of recommendation to universities, and takes a continued interest in their academic and professional lives.
  • Katelyn Wilson

    Opera singer Katelyn Wilson hails from Chicago with a Master of Music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. She completed her Undergraduate degree from the Manhattan School of Music, and teaches piano, voice, and flute. She has performed with the New York Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony and Opera, made her German debut with the Lyric Opera Studio of Weimar, and performs all over the Bay Area. Katelyn has been teaching piano and voice since she was in high school, and has maintained her private studio for the last several years. A daughter of two musicians, she understands the importance and necessity of exposure to music, even at a very young age. The joy of music lasts a lifetime and bolsters academia, as well as creates another nurturing community.
  • Louise Nalbandian

    Singer-songwriter and classically-trained pianist Louise Nalbandian celebrates her 15th year of teaching piano here at Burke’s. A native San Franciscan, she has studied with Svetlana Gorzhevskaya (SF Opera) and Dr. Betty Oberacker (Cleveland Institute, UCSB). A graduate of piano performance at UCSB, Louise went on to become a staff piano accompanist at the Ithaca College of Music and has had her own piano studio since 2002. Her approach and aim is to make the experience of playing piano fun, while also imparting a knowledge of key foundational concepts such as technique and theory. Louise’s end goal is to give students the independence and confidence they need to build a lifelong (and loving) relationship with music and with the piano.  
  • Shaying Unger

    Shaying Unger

    Shaying Unger started her piano studies in her home country of Taiwan when she was 5 years old. As a teenager she came to the United States to study piano at Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan. She then pursued piano performance at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music (SFCM) where she obtained her Bachelor's and Master's degrees. Shaying began her teaching career in 2003 at the San Domenico School in San Anselmo where she was promoted to Chair of the Music Department. As she developed her love for teaching piano, she continued teaching at private schools in San Francisco, including The Holy Name School, The Hamlin School, and Convent & Stuart Hall.  Shaying was the winner of the California Teachers Association Piano Concerto Competition with Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No 2. She also won the Concerto Competition at SFCM and performed the piece with the SFCM orchestra. Shaying is fluent in Mandarin.

Violin Instructors

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  • Adrienne Sengpiehl

    Adrienne Sengpiehl has been the principal second violinist of Midsummer Mozart since 1996 and spends Augusts in Idaho as a member of the Sun Valley Summer Symphony. Since playing with the New World Symphony under the direction of Michael Tilson Thomas, she has continued her career actively freelancing with Bay Area orchestras, including the San Francisco Symphony, San Francisco Opera, Santa Rosa Symphony, California Symphony, Marin Symphony, and Symphony Silicon Valley. As a chamber musician, Adrienne has been heard throughout the Bay Area from Noontime Concerts and Old First Concerts in San Francisco to the Napa Valley Opera House. She has recorded for numerous movie soundtracks, video games, and special projects at Skywalker Ranch. Recently, she performed in the pit orchestra for Soft Power at the Curran Theater in San Francisco. An avid music educator, Adrienne is currently a Teaching Artist for the San Francisco Symphony's Music and Mentors Program visiting SFUSD Middle and High Schools, an Artist in Residence at Ruth Asawa School of the Arts, creator and instructor of "String Sisters" at Katherine Delmar Burke School, and maintains her private home studio. She is also both former faculty and affiliate teacher for the Virtuoso Program at the San Domenico School, and performer for the San Francisco Symphony’s Adventures in Music Program. Adrienne is a featured clinician at many summer music institutes, including the Omaha Conservatory of Music Institute, Summer Music Institute/SVSS Music School, Sound Encounters, and formerly at Summer Music West at the San Francisco Conservatory. She is also a Suzuki Violin Method Specialist and enjoys being a mom to two wonderful sons. Ms. Sengpiehl holds a B.M. degree from the St. Louis Conservatory of Music and an M.M. in violin performance from the Juilliard School. 

Guitar, Ukulele & Piano Instructor

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  • Van Labrakis

    Van Labrakis is a guitarist, multi instrumentalist, and music producer in San Francisco.
 Since 2003, Van has been teaching guitar, bass, piano, drums, singing, music theory and music production to students of all ages. Originally from Athens, Van has performed, recorded, and taught music in London, Berlin, Los Angeles, and the Bay Area.


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  • Photo of Cyndera Quackenbush

    Cyndera Quackenbush 

    Director of After School & Summer Programs
    415.751.0187, ext. 371
    San Francisco State University - B.A.
    Pacifica Graduate Institute - M.A.
Burke's mission is to educate, encourage and empower girls. Our school combines academic excellence with an appreciation for childhood so that students thrive as learners, develop a strong sense of self, contribute to community, and fulfill their potential, now and throughout life.


An independent K–8 school for girls
7070 California Street, San Francisco, CA 94121
Phone: 415.751.0177 Fax: 415.666.0535
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