Music Lessons in Sioux Falls, SD - Popplers Music

Popplers Music offers a semester-based music lesson program in Sioux Falls featuring weekly, 30-minute lessons and 60-minute lessons available upon request. Our semesters loosely follow our public school calendar, although the number of weeks per semester will vary. Students may join the music lesson program at any point in time. The fall and spring semesters will feature a recital to cap off the season, and while it is optional, it is highly encouraged to participate! Lesson fees are determined by each teacher, ranging between $20 and $40/half hour and all music lessons occur during regular store hours. Please contact the store for further details!

Lesson Sign Up Form Sioux Falls

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To inquire about music lessons, please call us at (605) 336-6332 or email Chris for more information!

Paul Schilf
Paul Schilf Low Brass Instructor

Dr. Paul R. Schilf taught for 15 years at Augustana University in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. While at Augustana, Schilf served as associate director of bands and professor of music education. He conducted the Augustana Band, The College & Community Concert Band, The Northlander’s Jazz Ensemble, the Jazz Lab Band, and the Augustana Brass Choir. In April of 2016, Dr Schilf retired from Augustana University and became general manager of Popplers Music Inc. in Sioux Falls. This new business venture allows for him to remain active in music education in a different capacity.

Isabella Kumagai
Isabella Kumagai Piano Instructor

Bella graduated in Brazil, with a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance, and received her master’s degree in music from the University of North Dakota. Bella has also been a soloist with symphony orchestras both in Brazil and the United States and has won 1st prize in 12 Piano Competitions. She is passionate about teaching piano and playing duets with her husband Matt, who is a cellist. Her favorite hobby is spending time outside with her daughter Maya, and she also loves watching tv series with Matt and eating anything with a lot of chocolate.

Matt Wellert
Matt Wellert Cello Instructor

Born in Santiago, Chile, Matthew Wellert is an avid cellist in Sioux Falls and the surrounding areas. Currently focusing on the piano department in Sioux Falls, he also manages the Popplers Music Artist Series by coordinating events with professional musicians from the surrounding areas. Aspiring to introduce music through culture and diversity, Matt enjoys collaborating with musicians from all backgrounds and all skill levels. He obtains a Masters of Music in Cello Performance from the University of North Dakota, and two degrees from the University of Montana where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Cello Performance, and a Bachelor of Science in Sociology/Criminology.

Matt Walicke
Matt Walicke Vocal & Piano Instructor

Instructor Matthew Walicke can help you truly find your voice. With training in a wide range of classical and contemporary methods, his lessons help students understand their instrument and its capabilities. He is also accepting piano students.

Elizabeth (Beth) Feltes
Elizabeth (Beth) Feltes Vocal Instructor

Elizabeth (Beth) Feltes, of Sioux Falls, SD, is a classically trained Soprano. She earned a Bachelor's Degree in Music from Gustavus Adolphus College in 2005. As a Soprano soloist, Elizabeth has performed at dozens of senior living communities, churches, funerals, competitions, and family events. She has been teaching piano and voice lessons for 9 years ( In 2019 Elizabeth competed in the Eisteddfod at the North American Festival of Wales and received the top prize in the Semi-Professional Solo Voice category which included a scholarship to travel to Wales to compete in the Eisteddfod there. In 2022 (after a delay caused by COVID), she finally got to travel to Wales and compete. Playing piano and singing are two of Beth's favorite things to do! Beth loves musical theater and, in 2016, portrayed Mary in a stage performance of "Mary Poppins." In 2022, she was the Music Director for The Premiere Playhouse's production of Mary Poppins Jr. Beth has been the Children’s Choir director at Abiding Savior Free Lutheran Church for the past 5 years. In 2023, Beth started The Sioux Falls Homeschool Choir ( and she is thrilled to continue to give kids ages 4-18 an opportunity to grow their choral singing skills. Elizabeth currently resides in Sioux Falls with her husband and 3 young children.

Ian Reiland-Smith
Ian Reiland-Smith Percussion Instructor

Ian Reiland-Smith grew up is Sioux Falls, SD and earned a bachelor's degree in percussion performance from the University of South Dakota in 2019. He has participated in and taught for local drum academy Groove inc. Outside his music life, Ian performs stand up comedy at local open mics.

Adam Schechter
Adam Schechter Violin/Viola Instructor

Adam Schechter is a member of the viola section of the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra. He studied Viola Performance at Indiana University under Stephen Wyrczynski and at McGill University under Andre Roy. While at Indiana University, Adam received instruction in violin pedagogy from Mimi Zweig and Brenda Brenner, and he taught supplemental violin lessons as a part of the Indiana University String Academy. Adam grew up in Sioux Falls, studying viola and violin with Sue and Ray Sidoti.

Thomas Fortner
Thomas Fortner Cello Instructor

Thomas Fortner is a passionate musical communicator, creative programmer, innovative arts entrepreneur, and dynamic educator. He is currently the Assistant Conductor and Youth Orchestra Music Director of the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra. An energetic advocate of building stronger communities through music, he founded and is the Artistic Director of the Iowa Great Lakes Music Festival, where he partners with local performing arts presenters to bring world-class musical performances to the Iowa Great Lakes region.

Tasondra Walicke
Tasondra Walicke Clarinet and Saxophone Instructor

Tasondra Walicke is a passionate musician and music educator, dedicated to excellence in performance and personal connections. She is a Brookings, SD native and has been living in Sioux Falls for 15 years after studying Music Education at South Dakota State University and Clarinet Performance and Pedagogy at the University of Iowa. Tasondra is in her tenth year as an Instructor of Clarinet and Saxophone at the University of Sioux Falls. She is a frequent guest artist, soloist, clinician, and adjudicator for regional high schools, universities, and professional ensembles. For thirteen years, Tasondra served as Director of Music at Sioux Falls Lutheran High School, leading their Concert Band, Marching Band, Concert Choir, and small instrumental and vocal ensembles. She also taught Music Theory, Middle School Band, and private instrumental and vocal lessons to 4th-grade through 12th-grade students at Sioux Falls Lutheran School. In her limited free time, she enjoys traveling and making music with her husband, Matthew, and spending time with their children Evan, Abi, and Paul, and their dogs, Arya and Rocko.

Melissa Molstad
Melissa Molstad Piano Instructor

My name is Melissa Molstad. My husband, Tom, and I have been married for 26 years. We live on an acreage NW of Sioux Falls and have 6 children, 2 daughters-in-law, and three grandchildren. Our home pets include 7 fish in an aquarium, Smudge the indoor dog and Friskiss the old, outside tomcat. In the summer we garden and in the winter we read a lot of books. We have been a home-school family for 20 years and we love to learn. Among other things, my husband is a self-taught luthier. He builds and sells ukuleles and guitars ( I have been learning to quilt baby blankets. Piano lessons began for me when I was four years old and continued all the way through college. My piano has been a best friend and companion to me for most of my life: even when I attended college out of state it came along. When I am frustrated or lonely or sad, playing the piano helps. When I need a challenge, I pick a new song to learn. I’m excited to get to know you a little bit and share with you some of what I know about music and the piano. It will be a joy to help you grow and encourage you on your music path however long that path turns out to be.

Charlie Anderson
Charlie Anderson Guitar Instructor

What do I love about guitar? It allows you to express yourself. There is also a sense of accomplishment in learning new songs. My musical journey started with piano lessons in the 2nd grade. At age 14 I started with guitar lessons. I have played in bands, wrote and recorded songs in the studio. Helping others learn guitar is so rewarding to me. It would be my honor to share my knowledge and experience with you on your musical journey!

Warren Sturlaugson
Warren Sturlaugson Voice/Piano Instructor

Warren Sturlaugson graduated from the University of Mary in Bismarck, North Dakota, in 2006 with a Bachelor's degree in Vocal Music Performance. Since then he has been teaching singing and piano (beginners) to children and adults of all ages in North Dakota and South Dakota. He has taught hymns, rock, country, pop, and contemporary Christian music. He served as church pianist for the Bismarck Chapel, Living Water Church in Sioux Falls, and Capitol Heights Baptist Church in Bismarck. He was a member of the Bismarck-Mandan Civic Chorus. He moved to Sioux Falls in 2018. Warren is looking forward to meeting new students in Sioux Falls.