We are so grateful for our community of incredible music educators! Education is one of our most precious assets here at ACG and we would like to take this opportunity to spotlight some of the amazing people we have the privilege of working with. Click here to learn more about ACG Education.


This week we had the pleasure of speaking with teaching artist Francisco De La Rosa. Francisco was born and raised in El Paso, TX, where his love of music was inspired. Francisco shared, 

“Growing up with my family in that region exposed me to a variety of music styles. From traditional Mexican folk music, Salsa, Cumbia, country, to rock, metal and hip hop. 

I received my first ever guitar at around four or five years old. It was a toy guitar from Mexico that I begged my parents to buy from a street vendor at the border crossing of Juarez and El Paso on our way back from visiting family.”

Francisco moved to Austin in 2007 and attended Akins high school in 2009 where he joined his first classical guitar class led by Dr. Travis Marcum, Jeremy Osborne, and Cathy Bennett. Francisco shared, 

“Joining this guitar class was a big dream of mine because I never had the opportunity to have formal guitar Instruction. Prior to that I had only taught myself to play by ear listening to rock songs on the radio and playing in a punk rock band. After graduating from Akins highschool in 2013, I was inspired to study Classical Guitar at Texas State university where I studied with Professor Mark Anthony Cruz and earned a degree of Bachelors of Music with a concentration in Classical Guitar performance.”

Upon graduating from Akins, Francisco became more involved with ACG. He volunteered at concerts and events during his time at Texas State, and also participated in our outreach concerts! Now, Francisco is a teaching artist as part of our outreach program. 

Francisco began teaching lessons at Mendez Middle School, Akins High School, Travis High School, Decker Middle School and Manor High School in February of 2022! Francisco shared a bit about what inspired him to become a teacher, 

“I was inspired to become a guitar instructor by the amazing educators at ACG. Dr. Marcum and Mr. Osborne have been amazing role models to me since my time at Akins High School, and It was thanks to them believing in us as young adults that I am where I am today. Much of my life in high school I didn’t feel like I belonged or like I was great at anything. But with Mr. Osborne, Dr. Marcum and Mrs. Bennett and my guitar class I felt like I was doing something important, I felt valued and like someone believed in me. This is what I hope to inspire in my students, that they have a place to do what they love, and educators that support and believe in them.”

Francisco shared more about what he enjoys about his position as a teaching assistant, 

“My favorite part of the job is when I see students really excited to play and learn new music. I love seeing their faces light up with joy when they hear a new piece and they say ‘I wanna learn that!’”

We had the pleasure of seeing some of Francisco’s students perform at our student spotlight concert on March 31, and one of his quartet groups are preparing for the Hill Country Classical Guitar festival at Texas State University!

We’re so excited to hear more stories from music educators we have the pleasure of working with! 

Read another story about Akins guitar and mariachi instructor, Susana Diaz-Lopez, here.