Meet Our Instructors
Ninee Petchprapa Wolff
Ninee Petchprapa Wolff started her music education with the Talent Research Project in Bangkok, Thailand. With the Project, she toured extensively in Thailand and Europe performing classical music on flute and violin. Entering the United States as an exchange student in 2001, she began her studies with Linda Doria, principle flutist of the Mid-Columbia Symphony.
Later, she was offered scholarships to continue her music education at Central Washington University in Ellensburg under the instruction of Dr. Hal Ott. During her time there, she served as the principle flutist and piccolo in the CWU Wind Ensemble and Orchestras. Studying jazz under Tracy Knoop, former lead alto of the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, she played tenor sax in several of the jazz ensembles, and she also served as a violinist in the Symphony Orchestra at CWU. After earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in music with a Jazz Specialization (Dean’s Scholar), she settled in Olympia, WA, performing and teaching private lessons.
In March 2010, Ninee and her husband, Aaron Wolff were invited to become board members of the POSSCA (Patrons of South Sound Cultural Arts). Ninee is also a current member of the Seattle Flute Society and National Flute Association. She has judged local festivals and competitions such as WMEA Solo and Ensemble Contest. Her students are very active and have won various awards and recognition. She performs regularly with various ensembles ranging from symphony orchestras to big bands such as Seattle Women’s Jazz Orchestra and the Olympia Jazz Senators. Ninee's accomplishments include Silver Medalist in the Thai National Youth Music Competition, 1st place Violin Soloist in the Yakima Valley Region Solo and Ensemble Contest, 2nd place Flute Soloist in the Washington State Solo and Ensemble Contest, 1st place Flute Soloist in the Musicfest Northwest, and Snelling Music Competition Winner at CWU. She won 3rd place in the NFA's Jazz Soloist competition and was chosen as an alternate to perform at the National Flute Convention 2012 in Las Vegas. Ninee has toured on the west coast, and appeared in the Bangkok Jazz Night By the River 2015, the largest international jazz festival in Thailand. Together with her husband, Aaron Wolff they were featured artists in the Black Box Jazz Series 2017 for Washington Center of the Performing Arts.
Growing up in Olympia, Aaron Wolff had participated in many local music organizations including the Student Orchestras of Greater Olympia (SOGO), Tacoma Youth Symphony, and the Capital Playhouse. He also participated in the US Youth Ensembles European Concert Tour. As a high school senior, he was selected as one of the two recipients for the Patrons of South Sound Cultural Arts(POSSCA) scholarship.
On a music scholarship, he entered his freshman year at Central Washington University and served in the CWU Wind Ensemble and Symphony Orchestra on the clarinet. He played as the lead alto sax in several jazz ensembles and was one of the featured soloists for CWU Jazz Band I at the Next Generation Jazz Festival in Monterey, California.
He has performed with artists including Ingrid Jensen, Jon Wikan, Nancy King, Bob McChesney, Greta Matassa, and New York Voices. While attending CWU, he studied under the direction of Joseph Brooks and Tracy Knoop. He graduated from CWU(Cum Laude) with a Bachelor of Arts in Music, Jazz Specialization. He has performed locally with ensembles such as the Pierce College Jazz Band, Bob Nixon Big band, and also has toured with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra. Aaron performs regularly with Lakewood Community Jazz Band, the Jazz, Senators, a Klezmer band Erev Rav(voted Best Band of Olympia in 2013), and a funk group the Brown Edition (voted the Best Band of Olympia in 2011 and 2012 by the Volcano's Readers' Pick). The Brown Edition's "Soulpocalypse" album has also won Judges' pick Best Album of the year in the Funk/Jam/Fusion category in the Independent Music Awards(IMA) He teaches single reeds, jazz, and music theory private lessons in Olympia, WA. Aaron and his wife Ninee served POSSCA from 2010-13 as co-chairs for Cultural Assistance Program for Students(CAPS).
A versatile guitarist, composer, and educator, Tarik Bentlemsani has approached music from a rich variety of perspectives. Beginning in the classroom, Tarik played violin in 4th grade orchestra, switched to trumpet in 5th grade, and played trumpet in jazz band through middle school and high school. Regularly a featured soloist on trumpet, Tarik began to show promise on guitar and would double on guitar and trumpet in the Black Hills High School Jazz combo. Tarik studied classical and jazz trumpet with Drew Gibbs and Andy Omdahl and studied guitar with Tim Eicholt. While a high school student, he was called to play local funk and soul gigs on trumpet. At this time Tarik also recorded a CD of original music with his band Detrital Rocks, where he played trumpet, guitar, and mandolin interchangeably.
Finally choosing guitar as his primary instrument, Tarik’s college experience furthered his versatility. In addition to studying classical guitar and playing in jazz band, Tarik also played trumpet in symphonic band and sang in choir. He taught regular guitar lessons to other students and local enthusiasts. As a featured soloist in the premier CWU jazz band Tarik shared the stage with international greats including David “Fathead” Newman, (Saxophonist with Ray Charles) jazz drummer/percussionist Jon Wikan, trumpeter Ingrid Jensen, bassist Christian Fabian, and saxophonist Bob Sheppard. Tarik is also featured on the 2009 recording “In a mellow tone from CWU jazz band 1 which is availiable on sea-breeze records. Tarik graduated From Central Washington University with a B.A. in music-jazz specialization.
Tarik is currently in demand as a guitarist for jazz groups, rock and funk bands, bluegrass bands, solo classical performances, and anything else that needs a guitar. He has performed locally with the latin-jazz group Momenti Rubati, The funk band The Brown Edition, and with jazz vocalist Lizzy Boyer. He recently toured to Colorado with his String band Podunk Funk, and toured to California with The Brown Edition. He performs weekly At Traditions Café in Olympia WA, playing solo guitar. Tarik has been teaching classical guitar lessons for five years, and is gaining notoriety as a performer and educator in the Olympia area.