Hailing from southeastern Pennsylvania, Chris started playing saxophone at the age of 9. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education from Messiah College in Grantham, PA where he studied classical saxophone with Aaron Patterson and Dr. Amanda Heim, jazz improvisation with Kirk Reese and Tim Warfield Jr., conducting with Dr. Bradley Genevro, and composition with Bruce Yurko. While at Messiah, he served as lead alto saxophone in JazzONE as well as co-principal saxophone in the Wind Ensemble. Chris has also had additional studies with jazz saxophonists James Hughes, Eric Koppa, and Matt Otto.
As an educator, Chris has had a wide range of experiences. He has served as the Instructor of Saxophone at the State Street Academy of Music in Harrisburg, PA in addition to teaching his own private students. He was a Camp Counselor at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Twin Lake, Michigan for two summers where he taught saxophone and jazz, while performing in the Blue Lake Festival Band, Staff Jazz Band, and Staff Band. Chris served as the Director of Instrumental and Vocal Music at Hogan Preparatory Academy in Kansas City, MO, and in June 2013 he began his current position as the Director of Instrumental Music at Skutt Catholic High School in Omaha, Nebraska. Chris also plays professionally with his wife, bassist Paige Cotignola, in the Midwest's premier salsa orchestra Esencia Latina based in Omaha.