Manuel Gutierrez joined the Pasadena Community Orchestra’s bass section in 2011. His musical journey began at the age of 13, after being inspired to play guitar by his singer-songwriter cousin, Jennifer. In the 7th grade, he jumped at the chance to learn guitar in his elementary school’s after school music program. In 10th grade, he joined the high school jazz band as an electric bass player and as a percussionist in the wind ensemble/marching band. By his senior year of high school, he began playing the double bass at the age of 18.
After graduating from high school in 2004, Manuel attended UCLA, earning a B.A. in ethnomusicology and jazz studies in 2008. At UCLA he studied jazz with notable performers/professors such as Roberto Miranda, Kenny Burrell, Clayton Cameron, Sherman Ferguson, and Tamir Hendelman. Following undergrad, Manuel spent a year as substitute teacher for the Bassett Unified School District. It was during this time that he realized that teaching was the profession he wanted to pursue. In 2009, Manuel applied and was accepted into UCLA’s Graduate School of Education and Information Studies’ Teacher Education Program. Under the guidance of Sue Tenorio, Jeffery Share, and Frank Heuser, he was able to earn a M.Ed. along with California teaching credentials for both music and multiple subjects in 2011.
Currently, Manuel is a substitute teacher for Bassett USD, El Monte UHD, Arcadia USD, and Norwalk-La Mirada USD. He currently performs in the bass sections of both the Claremont Symphony Orchestra and the Southland Symphony Orchestra. Outside of the orchestra setting, Manuel plays electric bass for a Beatles cover band, ska band, and bass/guitar in his own band of original music.