Alexa Thanos, at a glance.

Current Roles


Faculty Coach


Signed Artist

Signed Artist

Professional Experience

Adjunct Instructor - College of San Mateo
August 2022 - Present | San Mateo, CA

Courses: Musicianship I & II, Piano II - IV, Audio for Visual Media (co-taught)

Faculty Coach: Arts & Media ACC - College of San Mateo
September 2023 - Present | San Mateo, CA

Co-Founder - Spaced Out Studios
March 2023 - Present | San Francisco Bay Area, CA

Piano Instructor - California Conservatory of Music
February 2023 - October 2023 | Redwood City, CA

Conference Associate - Game Developers Conference
March 2023 | San Francisco, CA

Graduate Teaching Assistant - San Francisco State University
January 2022 - December 2022 | San Francisco, CA

Courses: Species Counterpoint, Diatonic Harmony, Chromatic Harmony

Senior Piano Instructor - Elena Orduyan Piano School
May 2018 - August 2021 | Belmont, CA

Student Assistant - College of San Mateo
August 2017 - May 2019 | San Mateo, CA

Courses: Musicianship I-IV, Harmony I-IV, Piano I-IV, Piano Literature

Independent Music Instructor - San Francisco Bay Area, CA
May 2012 - Present

Subjects: Piano, Guitar, Ukulele, Voice, Music Theory


M.A. Composition - San Francisco State University
2021 - 2023

Graduate Assistant: Species Counterpoint, Chromatic Harmony

B.M. Piano Performance - San Francisco State University
Magna Cum Laude
2019 - 2021

A.A. Music - College of San Mateo
Magna Cum Laude

A.A. Accounting - College of San Mateo
Cum Laude

A.S. Mathematics - College of San Mateo
Cum Laude

Fun fact: I have not always loved school

For anyone who has known me as an adult, this would come as absolutely shocking news:

"That's like Cookie Monster not liking cookies!", one might say.

But it's true.  I had a challenging relationship with school through all of my formative years: social struggles, the occasional disciplinary debacle, and an unrelenting disdain for anything "homework" related that didn't involve something I was passionate about. What none of us knew—or perhaps more accurately, what we didn't have yet the language to describe, at least for young girls—was that I am neurodivergent, and from that alone, you can probably imagine a good portion of my early education experiences.

To make matters worse, for a child in America's compulsory education ecosystem, music did not "count" as a meritable endeavor unless all of the other acceptable boxes were ticked.  No amount of practice in music made up for my near-failing grades in all other studies, which seemed barbaric to ten-year-old me, and even to sixteen-year-old me! (Adult me has grown to understand the bigger picture, but still identifies music as one of the biggest failure points in American education.)  

So, no, I have not always loved school, but:

I have always loved learning.  

Yes, in the time I spent at my local college, some folks my age had already graduated from their "4+1" business programs at 'prestigious' universities.  They were listing an MBA on their first slew of job applications while I was filling out my demographic information to apply to the CSU schools that minimized my commute.  


In my five community college years, I tried so many different paths. 

I tried the path of the well-mannered math major who would transfer to SJSU with an engineering lean, but oh my goodness, I just couldn't stand it after Calculus I!  What started out as an exciting possibility soon turned into a Sisyphus-like boulder. Dread replaced passion, resentment replaced fulfillment: it was time to move on.

So then I tried the path of the 'bubbly accounting major' (yes, you read that right) who would go on to get their CPA license and work for a big firmbut on meeting real individuals who worked in FiDi like I had once imagined I would do, I couldn't have wanted anyone's lifestyle less.  

For three years, I shot darts and just about missed every single one, but I was becoming a better and better student with each passing semester.

And all the while, I was sneaking in music classes: first to satisfy basic gen-ed requirements, then "just for kicks."  Ultimately, I took them because they were the only classes I truly wanted to take.  Every fiber of my being wanted to know more about music, music theory, music historyand then, when Professor Jane Jackson explained to me the very concept of ear-training, I remember vividly thinking "this is the superpower I have wanted all my life!"  When I signed up for her Musicianship course cycle, Professor Jackson took me aside andwell, here's where it gets a little fuzzy. 

I can't remember if she encouraged me to be a music major, or explained to me that I already was a music major, and it was time for me to just sort out my forms at the paperwork level and solidify it.  Either way, she was absolutely right.  And I can't be more grateful to her, and to the amazing music faculty that I was so lucky to learn under, for illuminating the path that ultimately led me to further life-changing studies beneath Professor Krys Bobrowski, and later Dr. Michael Gilbertson and Dr. Ben Sabey at San Francisco State.

So yes, I spent five years at community college, but I stand by the fact that I did not waste a single minute there. 

In my mind, this is truly what college is for: finding your passions, finding your boundaries, and finding yourself.  Part of me cannot believe that I'm publishing thisif I had any more sorority-leaning inclinations, the sentiment could be absolutely gag-worthy.  Yet I believe every word of it, and I stand by it. 

And I am beyond thrilled to give this back to the next generation of students who sat where I once did, not so long ago.