Mrs. Wendy Sarnoff – Department Chair
Mrs. Sarnoff is the Department Chair of the Music Program at Venice High School, where she has been teaching at Venice High School for over 25 years. She is an educator of many musical talents, where there have been times where she was a one wo-man band. Many of her students have been accepted into prestigious programs, such as California Summer School of the Arts, SCVA Honors Choir, California All-State Choir, and ACDA National Honor Choir, for the past consecutive years. Performance credits include studio and motion picture work with LA Master Chorale and Pacific Chorale. Outside of the classroom, Mrs. Sarnoff is also one of six female American Sailing Association instructors/evaluators, where she is the lead instructor of the largest sailing school in Southern California.
Mr. David W. Lee
Venice High School’s Band Director, Mr. Lee hails from a small suburban town in South Jersey. Growing up, he played trombone, flute, and piano, and was actively playing in top-notch ensembles throughout his high school career, including an award-winning 165 member marching band. A bit aways from his hometown, his musical endeavors have taken him across the globe, but now have landed him in Los Angeles.
Mr. Lee received a Master of Music degree in Conducting from the University of California, Los Angeles. There, he served as Associate Conductor of the University Chorus, Assistant Conductor of the Symphony Orchestra, Teaching Assistant of the Advanced Conducting Techniques class, and Tour Manager for UCLA Choral Activities. A strong proponent for musical enrichment in the community, he was deeply involved with the UCLA Music Performance and Education Outreach Program.
Trained as a professional opera singer, Mr. Lee has a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from New England Conservatory of Music. Mr. Lee sang with the NEC Chamber Singers and Concert Choir and regularly performed in the Undergraduate Opera Scenes program and Graduate Opera productions. He continues to perform with ensembles, such as the Charles Dickens Carolers at venues throughout Los Angeles and Orange Counties.
Mr. Lee has attended the European American Musical Alliance Conducting Program in Paris, France – a renowned composition-driven program drawing from the pedagogical tradition of Nadia Boulanger. Through this program he was able to make his European conducting debut at the historic La Schola Cantorum de Paris.
Here in Southern California, Mr. Lee has been on the musical staff of the Santa Monica Youth Orchestra – a tuition-free orchestra program for young musicians, where he served as a musical instructor and also ran a weekly after school musical enrichment program as the Musical Artist in Residence at Virginia Avenue Park.
Prior to being at Venice High School, Mr. Lee was interviewed as one of six finalists for the Band Officer position of the United States Air Force Band.
Having lead the Mighty Gondolier Marching Band for two years at an after school capacity, Mr. Lee has continued his career at Venice High School as full-time Instrumental Music Teacher. He is very excited to work with the students and looking forward to building a strong and comprehensive music program at Venice High School.