Karen Janssen playing with students

Sharing and playing music is the most important part of my life. Though I haven’t always been a music teacher, it is by far my favorite job in the many, many I have held! Originally from Washington State, I moved to Crested Butte, CO, in 1988, via California (where I attended Stanford University, graduating with a BA in English and Creative Writing), Hawaii, and a fortunate stint of world travel. I quickly began to amass quite a varied resume in my new hometown. I did everything from serving Mexican food (and French…and Italian…), teach preschoolers how to ski, make jewelry, punch holes in metal sheets, clean condominiums, and the list goes on… typical ski bum stuff! I returned to graduate school in 1991 and soon thereafter began my teaching career in earnest. I taught kindergarten in Costa Rica, Spanish to K-12th-graders in Crested Butte, environmental education to the teenage set, and so on, until in 2001, I had the opportunity to combine two of my favorite things: young children and music! That’s when I began to teach classes through The Music Class, a well-known music program for young children. I attended East Tennessee State University in ‘07-‘08, where I took great pleasure in expanding my musical knowledge. I have taught private lessons in piano, guitar, and mandolin since that time in addition to my classes for young children. Lately, I’ve enjoyed a lot of continuing education learning to incorporate some of the amazing technology available in my lessons. Besides countless jam sessions with musician friends, I have played in various permutations of bands throughout the years, with the past six years dedicated to performing all over Colorado with the band Doctor Robert (a Tribute to the Beatles).

Music has been one of the most enriching and fulfilling parts of my life and I love to share my passion. I enjoy my experiences with each and every child and feel the gift of music is one of the most important things I, and you can give someone!


Karen Janssen


Karen Janssen headshot
Music in CB
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