Headshot for guitar teacher Nick Saia
BM Born in New York, Nick Saia began playing the guitar at age 9, initially focusing on the blues. As Nick continued to pursue music, his studies brought him to Laguardia High School of the Arts, where he began to study jazz. His biggest influences of that time were Django Reinhardt and Wes Montgomery. Nick was then fortunate enough to become involved with the Thelonious Monk Institute’s high school program, which allowed him to meet with a small ensemble of his peers twice a week and play with luminaries such as Curtis Fuller, Benny Golson, Matt Wilson, and many others. This eventually led to Nick touring with the Institute’s national all-star ensemble and Terrell Stafford. The band spent a week in Los Angeles giving master-classes at local high schools and then performing at multiple venues in the area. The group continued to play across the country, at locations such as the Mendocino Summer Jazz Festival and the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition.

Nick then was accepted to the Peabody Institute at Johns Hopkins University, where he continued his studies with Bollenback on guitar, and also worked with Michael Formanek. Over the course of his time in Baltimore, he developed a passion for composition and has studied there for the past 2 years with Judah Adashi and Oscar Bettison. In his sophomore year, he was awarded the Charlie Byrd Memorial Guitar Scholarship. Nick currently maintains a busy schedule teaching privately and at the Harmonia School, as well as performing regularly in both Baltimore and New York. He is an active member of groups such as UHHM, Liam Hurlbut’s Ephemera Quartet, The Creative Music Consortium and Ambit Orbit.