D'Arezzo Creative Education

Joseph D'Arezzo Natale

While Santa Barbara has been Joseph's primary place of residence for most of his life, he has been working internationally for over 30 years. His background is eclectic. However, his experience in mentoring people, young and old, has always been a part of his work. With a Master of Science in Education, and also Business Administration, (both from the University of San Francisco) for over 30 years he has owned and operated a Management Consulting Firm. 

With his wife, Glenna they founded a global non-profit Called Heart Ventures providing assistance to people who have been victims of, or survived human rights violations.   He has worked with large commercial business, and provided organizational development for non-profit organizations. Throughout the years, he worked with university students in career development, and families, youth and adults who faced mental health or other life challenges. His role has been to develop and implement support services including nurturing, goal planning, mentoring and specific education and vocational plans, focusing on the individual as the center of their personal life plan.


Joseph's business degrees included specific application of training for people with disabilities, including people with mental challenges, autism and developmental disabilities.


His experience as adjunct faculty for Westmont College, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Antioch University and concurrently designing and implementing programs for victims and survivors of human trafficking and extreme poverty, has provided him the opportunity of understanding people from all walks of life.


Joseph has worked with youth in many programs such as the Yolo Community Care Continuum in Davis, California, The California Department of Rehabilitation, The Devereux Foundation, our own non-profit Intensive Heart Ventures, provided services in Human Resources, Employment Training, Program and Project Management.  He has experience working in various industries from the private sector to social enterprise in the development of programs for people, business processes and technology development, all over the world including the 38 USA States,  Asia, Africa, Mexico and Central America.


In 2014 Joseph developed a merging of his for profit and non profit into what he defines as “pure social enterprise.  The theme of pure social enterprise is to draw circles around our places of business and homes, and take responsibility for the needs of our immediately surrounding social and physical environment without expecting our government, churches and nonprofit organizations to do it. Even if, due to small profits or personal income that provide just a few dollars above our own needs, and that circle is very small, we believe as our model is adopted by more and more people we can effect huge change in our immediate surroundings. As we evangelize those within our circle, and where our circle intersects with others (our neighboring residents and businesses) to adopt our model, and they evangelize the circles that intersect with theirs, this methodology can spread exponentially to change our world."


After many years of management consulting for complex projects and working as the primary owner of our Caribbean beach front resort-social enterprise, Joseph has settled in his long time hometown of Santa Barbara to work with a team of social entrepreneurs, educators and youth to provide this incredible service to our community in the D'Arezzo Center for Creative Expression.


Janet Austin


A native of Santa Barbara, California, I grew up loving the beach and the outdoors. The beach was a place I could read, write and explore. Growing up I had no idea what path I would find myself. I did, however, know that I wanted to work in a creative environment. Early on, I found myself in entertainment. I followed in my brother’s footsteps pursuing a career in Radio Broadcasting.


From the age of twenty, I succeeded in the industry for more than four decades. While I had a passion for Radio, I started to see a downward trend. So, at the age of forty-eight, I enrolled in college and set my sights on a new career. Earning a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Elementary Education has been one of my greatest achievements.

While in college, I discovered a talent I never knew I had. I could relate to children in a special way and they could relate to me in a way I could understand. The thrill I get from a child who experiences a “light bulb moment” is magical and something I hope to experience on a daily basis.


Over the years, I’ve written close to twenty children’s songs covering everything from animals to mathematical equations. I believe music spawns learning and love how music brings people together of all backgrounds. I enjoy journaling, hands-on education and encouraging children to think outside the box because I think learning should be fun and engaging!


Sio Tepper: Guest Instructor

Born and raised in Santa Barbara, Sio has been involved with the local music and arts culture for several years. She studied classical piano locally with Marilyn Clemons and Lana Bodnar, and attended the Music and Arts Conservatory throughout middle school and high school. She graduated from Santa Barbara High in 2010, and from UCSB in 2014 with a degree in Ethnomusicology.


During her time at UCSB, she continued to study piano while expanding her musical horizons by delving into other music cultures. She studied piano with Dr. Charles Asche, sitar and the Hindustani tradition under the direction of Dr. Scott Marcus, latin jazz with Dr. Jon Nathan, was a member of the Afro-Brazilian Ensemble, and studied Mississippi blues guitar with Kenny Sultan. 

Also during this time, she began to further her explorations with songwriting and composition. Sio is continuously inspired to give back to the community that shaped her as an artist by being involved in music and arts education. Currently, she teaches piano, guitar, and songwriting privately to students of various ages through her own studio and through SB Musicology. She is also an educator in the Santa Barbara High School Theatre Department, having worked on nearly a dozen productions as vocal director, co-music director, and conductor. She is currently a specialist teacher for the Advanced Theatre Class at SBHS. She has also worked with other local theatre companies such as Out of the Box Theatre production where she served as music director, and Stage Left Productions. She has also composed music for films in the Santa Barbara Film Festival. Sio performs locally with various collaborations ranging from classical trios, folk rock bands, to experimental theater.

Jesse Natale- Guest Instructor

Jesse Natale, Director of Photography, Editor

Graduated from Brooks Institute of Photography in with a bachelors degree 2017 in Commercial Film and Photography.


Jesse Natale (son of director Joseph Natale) is the owner of J North Productions, a Santa Barbara Based Video Production and Photography Company. They specialize in commercial, corporate, promotional, real estate, resort and lifestyle, weddings and events.

J North Productions provides media content, starting from concept to final product. This includes design engineering, direction, film, sound, and final editing.  Full service production company with a team of 10 media professionals. Some of their clients include Adidas, Figueroa Mountain Company, MOXI Museum, Beckman, Deckers, Ugg, AA Airlines, Enduroshield, private promotions for Actors such as Scott Eastwood and more.

Terry Gorka: Guest Instructor
Songwriter / Producer / Guitarist / Composer / Vocalist

Terry saw The Beatles in 1964 on the Ed Sullivan show and told his parents he was finished with the classical piano lessons and wanted to play guitar. That was a long time ago …

Since then he has had a long road through the music business that began in junior high and high school in Southern California with cover bands playing songs by The Doors, The Who, Jimi Hendrix and  Buffalo Springfield - to name a few.  He began writing his own music in 1966 and was offered his first recording contract that same year at age 15. 


He decided not to proceed with that deal and seven years later, after spending a year in a soul-searching personal journey traveling around Western Europe and the Greek Islands, he signed his first contract in Switzerland with Conod Music that included producing an album of his material and a series of live concerts in Western Europe.  In 1980 he signed a publishing contract in Australia with Warner Bros. and WEA Records for record distribution. During that time, he worked with bands, including AC/DC, Men at Work, INXS, the Little River Band and several others who were just beginning to be noticed around the world.

In 1985 he moved to London and landed a deal with Carlin Music Publishers. He collaborated and produced songs for a variety of pop artists including Al Jarreau, Feargal Sharkey, Sarah Cracknell (Saint Etienne), Judy Boucher, Cossi and many more. He was also involved in club remixes of Madonna pop songs and other prominent American imports as well as developing young songwriters for his publisher.

In 1992 he moved to Chicago where he wrote and produced music for ad agencies, including Leo Burnett (Kelloggs, McDonalds, Budweiser). He also discovered the new indie sounds of bands like the Smashing Pumpkins and worked with the talented indie songwriter, actor and vocalist, Lee Sellars, producing a number of notable tracks including, “Me and You”, “In the Dark” and “Just Like Angels.” He had the opportunity to produce various styles of hip hop at that time, while his work in Streeterville Studios included relationships with Neil Diamond, Steve Miller, Buddy Guy, Johnny and Edgar Winter, Lyle Lovette and others.

After nearly 20 years on the road Terry returned to Southern California in 1994.


He developed collaborations with artists locally and internationally – creating and producing music in variety of genres - orchestral, ambient, country, folk, rock (classic and modern), retro pop, blues and jazz – that could be licensed for use in film and television productions.  He currently works with several prominent music libraries that have placed his music on most of the major American network and cable television stations and motion picture production companies.

Katie Hahka

Staff Instructor

Katie is a Santa Barbara native who received a formal theatre education in high school at Idyllwild Arts Academy.


Upon graduation and receiving her arts certificate, she moved to New York City to train at Cap 21 Conservatory for musical theatre.


Katie has returned to Santa Barbara last year and has been involved in growing her education and working with students interested in dance, theater and singing . Katie has been working at Santa Barbara Dance Arts, Goleta Valley Junior High, and Monte Vista Elementary teaching dance and theatre. It has been a joy for her to share her love of theatre, and she is so excited to join D’Arezzo Creative Education!

We at D'Arezzo Creative Education are just as excited to have her join our team!

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