About: Francis Novak
Why do you teach? I teach music because I believe in the transformative and humanizing power of music and arts education, especially for youth. It was community music education that transformed my life as a child. Music education and my excellent and passionate music teachers had the most profound and positive effect on me. My goal is to help every child in my classroom discover the depth and beauty of their own voice.
Teaching Biography: Francis Novak is originally from Pittsburgh and through the community music program Winds on the Mon, hosted by the American Wind Symphony Orchestra, he began private clarinet lessons and weekly chamber music instruction starting in the 8th grade. By high school, Fran auditioned and played Principal Clarinet in the Three Rivers Young Peoples Orchestra, participated in the Pennsylvania All-State Band and performed as Principal Clarinetist in the All-State Orchestra. In 2003, Fran earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Clarinet Performance, as well as a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology as a dual degree student at the University of Michigan. Fran also plays the flute and saxophone, and completed training in conducting. Fran collaborated with several school districts in the Detroit and Ann Arbor Michigan areas where he first started teaching clarinet. After college, Fran moved to NYC and completed his Master of Social Work degree from New York University in 2006. Since, Fran has been concurrently practicing psychotherapy as well as performing and teaching music.
Performance Biography: Clarinetist and conductor Francis Novak is honored to lead the TBMS Saturday Music Project Orchestra as its Director. Fran performs regularly as Principal Clarinetist with the Queer Urban Orchestra and Concertmaster of the Lesbian & Gay Big Apple Corps Symphonic Band, where he was also the Assistant Director/Conductor (2015-2017). Fran has also performed with the Manhattan Symphonie Orchestra and performed with the orchestra on two National Tours of China (2014; 2016), performing in 13 cities throughout mainland China. Fran also performed in the orchestra of the Broadway National Tour of Music Man. As a classical clarinetist and conductor, Fran has performed in various places in New York City, including Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall and Avery Fischer Hall at Lincoln Center.