The Village Glen - 2nd. Floor    162 Mill Street Williamsville, New York 14221

        Since winning his first competition at the age of thirteen, Pakistani-born guitar virtuoso and composer Mir Ali has been described by Acoustic Guitar Magazine as “an exceptional nylon string guitarist," as "mesmerizing and hypnotic" by National Public Radio, and as “innovative and eclectic” by Soundboard magazine

        Ali has written music for movies, theater, radio, television commercials, and most recently for the documentary "Roots and Branches," which won the “Award of Excellence” from the prestigious Film dvisory Board in Hollywood. His recent tours include performances and master classes in India, Romania, Spain, Italy, and Canada. Mir is active as an adjudicator and clinician at prestigious guitar competitions and festivals in the United States and abroad. His publications are available through Mel Bay and Clear Note Publications.

        Mir serves as Director of the Amherst School of Guitar and has been President of the Buffalo Guitar Society and Artistic Director of the Rantucci International Guitar Festival and Competition for the past 15 years. He spends his time equally between Buffalo, NY and Pittsburgh, PA. Mir is represented by Performing Arts Management by special arrangement with Leona Zachary.




“Mir Ali is a compelling musician  and an extraordinary guitarist.”

JoAnn Falletta,

Conductor / Artistic Director

Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra

        Cindy Temple joined the guitar faculty at the Amherst School of Guitar in 2010. She brings a wealth of knowledge and many years of teaching experience to the school. Before joining Amherst School of Guitar, Cindy served her community as a PATH (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship) registered instructor for seven years. She has extensive experience instructing students of various disabilities ranging from nonverbal, autistic spectrum, cerebral palsy, downs syndrome and multiple sclerosis. She has worked in the school district as an instructional aide for special needs students in the classroom. 

        Passionate about and committed to classical guitar and guitar pedagogy, Cindy continues her studies each summer at the Greater Pittsburgh Suzuki Institute in Pennsylvania,  obtaining advanced training in the Suzuki Guitar Method. She has been studying classical guitar, music theory, fretboard harmony, guitar pedagogy and accompaniment and classical guitar repertory as a private student of Mir Ali since 2010. She also studies classical guitar with James Piorkowski, Distinguished Professor at SUNY, Fredonia. Cindy has been a participant in master classes and other events in the Western New York area and is active as a performer in local schools and other venues.

        Besides being a classical guitar instructor, Cindy is also a Suzuki parent.  Her son, Carlos, is a private student of Mir Ali at the Amherst School of Guitar.  This affords her the opportunity to apply the Suzuki philosophy and her valuable experience to the musical development of her son, as well as her own students. Cindy holds a B.A. in Human Resource Management with a minor in Psychology. She is an avid horseback rider.  Cindy, along with her husband and son, lives in Wales, New York.

        Leonard Ranallo, a native of Buffalo, NY, is a multi-instrumentalist whose primary instrument is the guitar (classical and steel string). Ranallo began his music studies at age eight on the french horn, and gained an affinity for the guitar at age ten. From there he sought to become as musically diverse as possible, delving into rock, folk, blues, and eventually, jazz and classical.

        Ranallo began classical guitar study at the Amherst School of Guitar with Mir Ali in 2011. The very next year, at the age of seventeen, Ranallo won the Amherst Symphony Scholarship and took First Prize at the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra Young Musicians Scholarship, making his professional orchestral debut performing Vivaldi’s Concerto in D Major with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2012, Ranallo was awarded the Eric Laufer Music Scholarship to attend Oberlin Conservatory where he became the recipient of the Donald Havas Memorial Scholarship in 2013. In addition to his guitar studies with Mir Ali, James Piorkowski and jazz guitarist Robert Ferazza, Ranallo has also participated in master classes with guitarists Carlos Barbosa-Lima, Michael Newman, Marc Teicholz and Raphaella Smits.

        As a composer, Ranallo has been awarded high honors from the Canisius College Composition Competition for his piece for horn quartet titled "Jason and the Argonauts" in 2011, and for his string orchestral work "Meteora" in 2012. In addition, "Meteora" was performed and recorded by the Sweet Home Symphony Orchestra in 2012.

        In the summer 2012, Ranallo completed the Every Child Can course and received his Book 1 certification for Suzuki Guitar at the Greater Pittsburgh Suzuki Institute, PA, with teacher-trainer Andrea Cannon. He is currently on the summer faculty of the Amherst School of Guitar teaching both Suzuki and traditional lessons in individual and group settings. Ranallo is currently pursuing a Bachelor's of Music in Guitar Performance at the Oberlin Conservatory studying under Stephen Aron.

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