The Professional Program


Faculty title-little

IMEP Paris College of Music : Christopher Culpo, Pianist - Composer

Christopher CULPO

Pianist, Composer
The Juilliard School New York, Boston University. Studies with Charles Banacos (piano), Milton Babbitt and David del Tredici (composition). Awards, commissions, and grants from the Massachusetts Arts Lottery, New York State Council of the Arts, Harvest Works, ASCAP, Centre Acanthes, Annette Kade Foundation, Fulbright Commission and Minister of Culture (France). Works have been played by Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, Longwood Symphony Boston, the pianist Guy Livingston, Koehne Quartet, Franco-American Chamber Ensemble, soprano Rayanne Dupuis and Ensemble 2e2m, Quintet of the Americas, Ensemble Aleph. CDs Culpo/Richard/Herbert Trio “Portrait in Black and White”, “Love & Bananas Are Here” (Cristal Records). Former teacher at the American School of Modern Music (2008 – 2016).

IMEP Paris College of Music : Rick Margitza, saxophonist


Berklee College of Music, University of Miami, Loyola University (New Orleans). Studied with Sonny Stitt, Gerry Niewood, Michael Brecker and David Liebman. Concerts, tours and CDs with Miles Davis, McCoy Tyner, Bobby Hutcherson, Tony Williams, Eddie Gomez, Chick Corea, Maria Schnieder, Martial Solal and Dave Douglas. CDs: Bohemia, Memento, Heart of Hearts, Miles Davis At Montreux 1973-1991, tours with Ibrahim Maalouf. Former teacher at the American School of Modern Music (2008 – 2016).

IMEP Paris College of Music : Peter Giron, Bassist, double bass


Double bassist
Westminster College (Princeton NJ). Studied in New York City (violin, alto and electric bass, double bass). Professor at National Conservatory of the Region of Montpellier, France. Bassist for Charles Earland, John Purcell, Luther Allison, Kurt Elling, Dave Leibman, Rhoda Scott, Hal Singer, Kirk Lightsey, Sarah Morrow. Concerts and tours in USA, Europe, Asia, and Africa. Former head teacher at the American School of Modern Music  (1988 – 2016)..

IMEP Paris College of Music : Phil Hilfiker, saxophonist


Berklee College of Music, University of New Hampshire. He studies with Bill Pierce, George Garzone, Hal Crook, Jim Odgren, Greg Hopkins. Concerts and tours in the USA and Europe with Gilfema (Lionel Loueke), Lage Lund, Lello Molinari Trio, Brian Walkley Band, Swiss Youth Jazz Orchestra with Jerry Bergonzi, Randy Brecker, Bob Berg and Adam Nussbaum, Seacoast Big Band, Berklee Concert Jazz Orchestra. Former head teacher at the American School of Modern Music  (2002 – 2016)..

IMEP Paris College of Music : François Fichu, guitarist - composer

François FICHU

Guitarist, Composer, Arranger
American School of Modern Music, Paris International Conservatory of Music. Gold Medal, Diplôme Supérieur for Composition and Arranging CIM Paris. Former student of: Pierre Cullaz, Gérard Marais (Guitar), Ivan Jullien (Arrangement), Homeiro Ribeiro de Magalhaes (choral and orchestral director). Played with: Tony Ballester, Bobby Rangell, Alain Debiossat (Sixun), Jean-Michel Davis, Claude Terranova, Ron Meza…François Fichu JAZZ GANG, 1 CD, FIP award, tours in France and Europe. Several CDs with Una Ramos, tours in France and Europe, composer requests for ARIAM IDF, ADIAM 77 & 91, arrangements for Telepop Music, Big Bands and harmony orchestras, choral music, Editions Retz, Composition award for the Internation Big Band Composition Contest “Ellington Composers 2013”. Former jazz lecturer at the University of Paris VIII,  former head teacher at the American School of Modern Music  (1985 – 2016)..

IMEP Paris College of Music : Tony Saba, drummer

Gérard Hagen


University of Mary, Northern Michigan University, Studies with Terry Trotter, Los Angeles. Concerts and tours in USA, Canada, Asia, Europe, and Africa. (Gary Foster, Jazz Tap Ensemble) Recording credits as a pianist, arranger and producer. ·Gerard Hagen Trio “Far Horizons” (Resurgent Music) “Stay Tuned” (Sea Breeze Jazz) “Song For Leslie” (Surf Cove Jazz) ·Leslie Lewis’ “Of Two Minds” (Surf Cove Jazz) “Keeper Of The Flame” (Surf Cove Jazz) “Midnight Sun” (Surf Cove Jazz) “Leslie Lewis & Gerard Hagen in New York” (Surf Cove Jazz) ·Saddleback College Jazz Faculty CD·Dan Jacobs Quartet “Play Song” (Metro Jazz Records) ·SSJ All-Stars “From California With Love” (SSJ-USA) Former Associate Professor of Jazz Piano at Saddleback College, Mission Viejo, California.

IMEP Paris College of Music : Bernard Vidal, guitarist

Bruno Pimienta

Music Business professor

Graduated from the Agostini drum school in France, Bruno is a versatile drummer who has played in numerous ensembles, both in popular music (singers Zaz, Lulu Gainsbourg …), jazz (Sarah Moreau, Nina Attal) world music (ONB), folk (Krystle Warren, Hugh Coltman). He has performed on numerous festivals (Jazz à la Villette, American jazz festival, Francofolies, Jazz in Montreal) and on TV shows (Tarata), radio … In addition to his professional activity in music, his style of teaching is situated around tradition and modernity, between playful pedagogy and rigor, in the relaxation and pleasure of playing. He shares also his knowledge and skills about Business in Music and career management.

IMEP Paris College of Music : Bernard Vidal, guitarist

Romain Pilon


After his music studies at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Romain Pilon has emerged over the years as an important player on the European jazz scene. The Financial Times describes him as a “world-class” musician, Jazz Wise refers to him as “a quick-thinking player with an attractively warm, acoustic inspired tone…”. He has recorded four albums as a leader, which have all been very well received by the press. A “Shock” for Jazz Magazine, “essential” for Jazz News…, with world-famous jazzmen such as Ben Wendel, Walter Smith, Seamus Blake, and Matt Brewer. His knowledge of tradition along with his ability to expertly adapt to all kinds of musical environments also make him a much-in-demand sideman. (photo © Roger Vantilt)

IMEP Paris College of Music : Bernard Vidal, guitarist


Trumpetist, guitarist, composer

Josiah Woodson obtained his Bachelor of Music degree from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music in Ohio, where he studied under Marcus Belgrave. Moving to Boston to receive a Master of Music degree (with academic honors) from the New England Conservatory of Music, Woodson was selected to perform at the Panama Jazz Festival with Danilo Perez, David Sanchez, Victor Paz, and Kurt Rosenwinkel.
Woodson has had the honor of collaborating and/or sharing the stage with such notable artists and musicians as, Branford Marsalis, Billy Hart, Gary Bartz, David Sanchez, Danilo Perez, Ronnie Burrage, John Lockwood, Dave Holland, Ben Williams, Mulgrew Miller, Marcus Belgrave, Clarence Clemons, Beyoncé Knowles, Blitz the Ambassador, Mos Def, Winard Harper, Steve Turre, Najee and many more. He has a grammy award winning as sideman (for work on Beyoncé’s “Love on Top”),

IMEP Paris College of Music : Dominique Assié, guitarist

Dominique ASSIÉ

Guitarist, Guitar professor
American School of Modern Music, CIM. Studies with Peter Giron, François Fichu, Bernard Vidal, Pierre Culaz. Philippe Beaudoin. Composer, arranger, and guitarist for Sébastien Charluet and Nicolas Stern. Studio Guitarist at Labo Orchestra Paris (Film Scores, TV commercials, Recordings). CDs “Sambela” with NZELA and “Les Anges ont des Ailes” by Nicolas Stern. Guitarist in several jazz combos, Concerts and tours in France and Switzerland. Former teacher at the American School of Modern Music  (2006 – 2016)..

IMEP Paris College of Music : Sylvain Bellegarde, singer


Vocalist, Voice professor
University of Montréal, Laval University, Québec. Vocal and jazz studies with Michel Donato, Pierre Lessard, Gabriel Hamel, Madelaine Thérieault. Vocalist with The Voice Messengers. CD nominated for “Record of the Year” at the Victoires de la Musique. First Prize at “Jazz Academy”, selection “Coup de Coeur” at Jazz FIP. Concerts at jazz festivals throughout Europe and Canada.

IMEP Paris College of Music : Ramon Fossati, trombonist - composer


Barcelona Conservatory of Music, Municipal Conservatory of Badalona, Barcelona AULA of Modern Music and Jazz. Paris Music Information Center (CIM). Graduate Degree in Music with emphasis in Jazz, at the Graduate School of Music of Catalonia (ESMUC). Studies with Ivan Jullien, Claudio Roditi, Dick Oatts, Benny Golson, Guy Figlionlos. Tours in France, Europe with Frank Wess, Nicholas Payton, Wild Bill Davis, Teddy Edwards, Liz McComb, Jan Harrington, Patrick Artero, Damon Brown, Ronald Baker, Ignasi Terraza, Barcelona Jazz Orchestra, Jean-Pierre Derouard Big Band. CDs with Paris-Barcelona Swing Connection, Frank Wess meets Paris-Barcelona, Pierre Esteve, Antoine Sahler, Ramon Fossati & Toni Sola with Ignasi Terraza Trio, Ramon Fossati Sextet.

IMEP Paris College of Music : Guy von Gaudecker, pianist


Classical course in Conservatory, Sound Engineering degree at Louis Lumière, American School of Modern Music. Professor of piano and jazz harmony since 1994, including at the American School of Modern Music. Courses and Master classes with: Herbie Hancock, John Scofield, Michel Pettruciani, Yaron Herman, Steve Browman, Joe Makholm, Manuel Rocheman… Pianist / keyboard / arranger / composer for Dika Sunradio, All Set, Vibes, Soul Agency, Hot Bob, Soul G & Tony Match… Composer / Producer for commercials and other covers / illustrations.

IMEP Paris College of Music : Manuel Rocheman, pianist


CNR of Paris with Alberto Neuman. Jazz with Michel Sardaby and Martial Solal. Boris Vian Prize from the Académie du Jazz for his first CD “Trio Urbain” in 1991. Golden Django award for his second album “White Keys” in 1992. Django Reinhardt Award from the Académie du Jazz in 1998, which awards the best musician of the year. 3rd cycle jazz piano professor at the Nadia and Lili Boulanger Conservatory, (Paris 9th arrondissement), Visiting Professor CMDL (Didier Lockwood Music Center). Concerts, tours and CDs: Anthony Ortega, George Mraz, Al Foster, Peter Erskine, Vladimir Cosma, Patrice Caratini, Eddie Henderson, Kyle Eastwood, Jean-Luc Ponty, Olivier Ker Ourio, Dusko Goykovich, Johnny Griffin, Teddy Edwards, Vincent Herring, Victor Lewis, Terrell Stafford, Peter King, Aldo Romano, Bill Mobley, Mingus Big Band, Rich Perry, Didier Lockwood, Sara Lazarus Eddie Gomez, Scott Colley, Antonio Sanchez, Rick Margitza, Adam Nussbaum, Rosario Giulani, Chuck Israels, Toninho Horta.

IMEP Paris College of Music : Tony Saba, drummer


Drum schools: Daniel Pichon, France Percussion Studio. Special classes with Daniel Pichon, Steve Carbonara, Norbert Pfammatter, Christophe Marguet,… Studies at the American School of Modern Music. Internships: International Association of Schools of Jazz (IASJ 1992), Jazz Masters in Monaco (1992), Berklee International Network (BIN) at Berklee College of Music (2004). Concerts and recordings for: Bernard Vidal, François Fichu, Peter Giron, Phil Hilfiker, Alexandre Astier, Michael Cheret, Stéphane Guillaume, Rick Margitza, Tony Saba Trio… Jazz and variety tours, concerts, and recordings. Former teacher at the American School of Modern Music  (1998 – 2016).