STRINGS

Jessica Dan Fan
violin, weeks 3-4

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Violinist Jessica Dan Fan of the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra since 2002, is an active soloist, educator, chamber and orchestral musician. A native of China, she was admitted at age 10 to the prestigious Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing as one of the top six violinists. Ms. Fan holds degrees from Central Conservatory of Beijing, University of Miami School of Music. While pursuing her Master Degree at University of Maryland, she studied with renowned violinist Arnold Steinhardt. Her mentors include Joseph Silverstein, Ruggiero Ricci, Yaoji Lin, Bill Stack, John Daley, Michael Tree, Lewis Kaplan and Thomas Moore. She is currently on the faculty of the National Symphony Summer Music Institute in Washington D.C., Sewanee Summer Music Festival in Tennessee while maintaining a robust private studio, and was appointed visiting professor for the College of Music and Performing Arts of Mian Yang Teacher’s College in China 2019. As the first ever Asian musician, Ms. Fan was a member of the United States Air Force Strings in Washington DC from 1997-2001, during which she performed for President Bill Clinton, President George W. Bush, Secretary of Defense William Cohen and numerous foreign dignitaries at the White House, Pentagon and the State Department. A hugely successful “Remembering Glen Miller” concert tour took her to all over Europe and Asia in 1998, and she also recorded the compact disc Album Wintertime as the featured soloist. She frequently performs with the Baltimore Symphony, National Gallery Orchestra, Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts, and is a member of the Global Chinese Symphony Orchestra which performs annually at the iconic National Centre for the Performing Arts at the heart of Tiananmen Square, Beijing China. As a chamber musician, she can be heard regularly on Kennedy Center Millennium Stage and Washington DC Embassy concert serious. As a concerto soloist, she had appeared with the National Repertory Orchestra, Miami Bach Society Chamber Orchestra, Miami City Ballet Orchestra, Gold Coast Opera, The U.S. Air Force Strings, Sewanee Festival Orchestra, and University of Miami Symphony Orchestra. In addition, she gives solo recitals and master classes regularly throughout China. She has performed under the baton of Sir Georg Solti, Andre Previn, Michael Tilson Thomas, Leonard Slatkin, Marin Alsop, Valery Gergiev and Placido Domingo to name a few. She currently performs on her Neapolitan instrument made by Francesco Versella in 1880.
Lin He
violin

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Recently interviewed by the Louisiana Public Broadcasting, Violinist LIN HE made his Carnegie Hall solo debut in November 2014, after a performance there earlier that year with principal players from the Metropolitan Opera, New York Philharmonic and Philadelphia Orchestra in orchestral setting. Over the past seasons, he performed the Bruch Scottish Fantasy with the Sonoma County Philharmonic, Korngold Concerto with the Rapides Symphony Orchestra, Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with the Shippensburg Symphony and the Sibelius Concerto with the Lake Charles Symphony.
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Inspired by the Complete Sonatas by Beethoven, Brahms, Faure, Mozart and Schubert for Violin and Piano in the past several seasons, 2020-2021 season of concerts include Magnard Sonata for Violin and Piano in multiple venues; chamber recitals as the violinist of Caladium Piano Trio; violin soloist of the Vivaldi/Piazzola Four Seasons and Mark O’Connor Surrender the Sword with the Rapides Symphony and Telemann Concerto for Four Violins with the Baton Rouge Symphony; violinist with principal players of major orchestras for the Concert of Solidarity for the Rohingya Refugees at Carnegie Hall; solo recitals and masterclasses at Indiana State University, Texas Tech University, Baylor University, University of Southern Mississippi, University of Oklahoma and Northern Illinois University; and series ofconcerts and masterclasses in mainland China andTaiwan.
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He has presented recitals at universities across the United States and China. Recently, he shared stage with Shanghai String Quartet and violinist Charles Castleman; performed solo recitals and gave master classes at Arizona State University, Florida State University, Longy School of Music, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, University of Houston, University of Las Vegas, University of North Texas, and University Alberta, Edmonton, Canada. As an orchestral player, Mr. He has performed with the Shanghai Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic and New World Symphony. He is a regular addition to the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra.
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Summer festival appearances have taken Mr. He to venues such as the Music Academy of the West, the Tanglewood Music Center and the Aspen Music Festival. Lin He has been a laureate of the Padesta Solo Competition and the ASTA competition.
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Mr. He is now serving as the Associate Professor of Violin at the Louisiana State University School of Music and the Associate Concertmaster of the Baton Rouge Symphony. During the summer, he teaches at the Summit Music Festival and Institute, Sewanee Summer Music Festival, InterHarmony International Summer Music Festival, Montecito International Music Festival and BayView Music Festival. Born in Shanghai, China, Mr. He began his musical training at the age of five. Mr. He received his doctorate from the Eastman School of Music, where he studied under the tutelage of Zvi Zeitlin. Other major influences include Steven Staryk, Sylvia Rosenberg, Kyung Sun Lee and Paul Kantor. His CD release from Centaur Records of French Sonatas for Violin and Piano with pianist Gregory Sioles received favorable reviews. Upcoming releases will include the Caladium Piano Trio on Centaur Records and compositions by Mark Prince Lee.
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His website is http://www.linheviolin.com.
Andrii Isakov
violin

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Ukrainian violinist, Andrii Isakov, has performed numerous solo and chamber music recitals in China, Italy, the United States, Poland, Croatia, and Ukraine. He has appeared as a featured soloist with the National Ukrainian Philharmonic Orchestra, Lviv Symphony Orchestra, Khmelnytskyi Symphony Orchestra, Cremona Music Academy Chamber Orchestra, CCM Philharmonia Orchestra as a winner of the concerto competition, and other reputable ensembles. As an avid chamber musician, Isakov has collaborated with world-renowned artists such as the Ying Quartet, Ayano Ninomiya, Vladimir Panteleyev (Leontovych String Quartet), Roberto Cani, and Alexander Kaganovsky.

Mr. Isakov is a laureate of diverse national and international competitions, including the Lewisville Lake Symphony International Competition for Strings and Harp, Francesco Forgione International Violin Competition, Cremona International Competition for Strings, Cliff Dwellers Club Competition for Strings, Croatian National Violin Competition, and many other competitions. He has additionally received the prestigious North Shore Music Award in Chicago as an acclaimed winner of the competition. Furthermore, Mr. Isakov has been a winner of two concerto competitions in the institutions where he attended: at the University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music (CCM), as well as the Lviv Special School of Music for Talented Children.

Teaching and pedagogy have always held a critical role in Mr. Isakov’s career. Mr. Isakov has worked as a graduate teaching assistant of Professor Kurt Sassmannshaus at the University of Cincinnati CCM for two years. Currently, he is a Violin Faculty at Starling Preparatory String Project and Associate Faculty at Cremona International Music Academy and Festival. Mr. Isakov is a founder, artistic director, and a Violin Faculty of the Fiorito International Music Festival and Competition. Additionally, he is a guest faculty at Conservatory Inner Mongolia National University, where he gave a masterclass in 2019. His recital in China the same year accumulated twelve thousand people in audience. Isakov’s students are recognized winners of international competitions, such as 21 st Century Talents Strings Competition, King’s Peak International Competition, Cremona International String Competition, Danubia Talents Liszt International Music Competition, Sugree Charoensook International Music Competition, and MAP International Music Competition. His students have performed solos with orchestras and received scholarships for different music programs. Mr. Isakov also a jury member of Cremona International Competition for Strings and head of jury at Fiorito International Music Competition.

Mr. Isakov holds his master’s and doctorate (ABD) degrees from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Kurt Sassmannshaus, and his bachelor’s degree from the Roosevelt University Chicago College of Performing Arts, where he was a student of Mark Lakirovich.

Brittany MacWilliams
violin

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Violinist Brittany MacWilliams has an active career both as performer and educator. She made her professional violin debut at age ten with the Louisville Orchestra and went on to win numerous competitions including the Music Teachers National Association competition. Since then, Ms. MacWilliams has performed extensively as soloist and concertmaster in such diverse locales as Istanbul, Beijing, Salzburg, Munich, Lisbon, and New York. She has had solo engagements with such orchestras as the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Louisville Orchestra, Munich Hochshule Orchestra, Kentucky Symphony, and Aspen Chamber Symphony. Ms. MacWilliams can be heard as soloist on two critically acclaimed compact discs of Giornovichi Violin Concerti for the Arte Nova Classics/BMG label.

As a frequent recitalist and avid chamber musician, Ms. MacWilliams performs in duos, piano trios, and string quartets throughout the United States. She is a founding member of the Baur Quartet and the Xavier Trio and has recorded four compact discs for the Vital Sounds label, including the Ten Celebrated String Quartets of W.A. Mozart. She can also be heard on “Passion from the Romantic Era,” a CD featuring Brahms’ Violin Sonata in D minor. She was chosen as resident artist for the Next Generation Music Festival where she toured and performed with the Baur Quartet and pianist Awadagin Pratt.

Ms. MacWilliams is currently a member of the violin and viola faculty at the University of Louisville School of Music. She is also the director of the UofL String Academy, a program for talented and dedicated pre-college students, and founder and director of the Oldham County Chamber Ensemble, where she conducts the Chamber Orchestra and teaches chamber music. She taught at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music as a member of the violin faculty from 2001-2012. She was also a member of the violin faculty at Xavier University, where she taught violin, viola, and chamber music for six years. She was the director and a member of the violin faculty of the Starling Preparatory String Project at the University of Cincinnati for twelve years. During the summers, Ms. MacWilliams has served on the faculties of the Aspen Music Festival and the Great Wall International Music Academy in Beijing, and she currently teaches at the Sewanee Summer Music Festival.

Ms. MacWilliams was the first winner of the prestigious Dorothy Richard Starling Teaching Fellowship in 2001, and over the years her students have won national competitions, performed with major orchestras, and received music scholarships to many top universities and conservatories. Ms. MacWilliams received her B.M. and M.M. degrees from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music as a student of Kurt Sassmannshaus and Dorothy DeLay.

Anna Reider
violin

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The Cincinnati Enquirer called violinist Anna Reider “superb,” “a showstopper,” and a “solo artist of the highest caliber.” Born in Russia to a family of musicians, Anna began her violin studies at an early age, following in the footsteps of both her father (Vladimir Reider) and her grandfather (Itzhak Reider). She has performed extensively throughout Europe, Asia, North and South America, Russia and Israel as a soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral musician.

Anna’s first solo orchestra performance came at age seven. Since then, she has won the Grand Prize at the Russian National Competition for Young Violinists, the Clermont Violin Competition in Israel, the top award of the America-Israel Cultural Foundation, and was a two-time winner of the Aspen Fellowship Award. Anna’s first American solo recital at the Kravis Center Young Artist’s Series won her critical acclaim. An avid chamber musician, her various chamber music engagements have included frequent performances with concert:nova, Chamber Music Raleigh, the Constella Festival, the LaSalle Chamber Music Series, the Linton Chamber Music Series, the Mayor’s 801 Plum Series, the CCM Faculty Series, and numerous engagements with members of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Cincinnati, Gainesville, and Israeli Chamber Orchestras. Her summer festival appearances have included Aspen, Caramoor, Keshet Alon, Sewanee, and the Zenith Chamber Music Festival. Anna has made many live recordings for television and radio. Her feature CD recording of the Wieniawski Violin Concerto in F# minor with the Plovdiv Philharmonic Orchestra is on the MMO label. In 2009, Cincy Magazine named her one of the most interesting people of the year.

For the 2022-23 season, highlights include a return engagement with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra for their November U.S. tour, the Arizona Music Festival in March, and the Sewanee Summer Music Festival. In 2019, Anna joined the Israel Phil and Zubin Mehta for his last tour with the orchestra to Peru, Columbia, Panama, and Argentina. She is currently the Dianne and J. David Rosenberg Chair in the 1st violin section with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, as well as an adjunct professor of violin at the University of Cincinnati, College Conservatory of Music. Previously, she served as concertmaster of the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra for nine years.

Anna studied in Novosibirsk with Zakhar Bron and as a Starling Scholarship student of Dorothy Delay, Kurt Sassmannshaus and Piotr Milewski at the University of Cincinnati. She lives in Cincinnati with her husband, Andy Pilder, their daughter Anat, and their kitten Luna.

Anna plays on a 1722 Giovanni Battista Grancino II. She uses several bows – including one by Paul Emile Miquel and one by Jerome Thibouville Lamy.

For the latest news on Anna, visit www.annareider.com

Jane Stewart
violin

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Jane Bowyer Stewart is a first violinist with the National Symphony Orchestra. A devoted chamber musician, she is a regular guest artist with elite Washington area ensembles, including the Kennedy Center Chamber Players and the 21 st Century Consort. The Washington Post has praised her “spectacular and virtuosic performance. . . . Stewart’s technique was breathtaking but never overpowering. She has a seemingly effortless ability to create elegant phrases.”

Stewart earned both her Bachelor of Arts (summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and Master of Music degrees from Yale University. At Yale, where she was the first recipient of the Broadus Erle Memorial Scholarship, she studied violin with Broadus Erle and Syoko Aki and chamber music with Raphael Hillyer and the Tokyo Quartet.

In the Washington area, Stewart has performed chamber music at the Kennedy Center’s Terrace Theater, the Phillips Collection, the Corcoran Gallery, and the Library of Congress. Currently a member of the Columbia String Quartet and co-concertmaster of the Eclipse Chamber Orchestra, she has also performed and recorded with the Chamber Soloists of Washington, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum Chamber Ensemble, and the Manchester String Quartet. Her several chamber music CDs include one Grammy nominee.

Outside of Washington, Stewart has been a fellow at the Aspen Music Festival, participated in the Grand Teton Music Festival more than ten times, and performed chamber music with Joseph Silverstein at the Honolulu Academy of Arts.

A sought-after private teacher and chamber music coach, Stewart also mentors young musicians through the National Symphony’s Summer Music Institute, giving seminars on audition preparation and lectures on orchestral repertoire. She has coached the American Youth Philharmonic’s first violin section and lectured at the National Orchestral Institute. She also regularly composes program notes for area performing arts organizations.

As a concerto soloist, Ms. Stewart has appeared with the Eclipse Chamber Orchestra, the New Jersey Symphony, and the National Symphony. She plays a violin made in 1691 by the Venetian master Matteo Goffriller.

Philippe Chao
viola

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Philippe Chao enjoys a wide-ranging career as an orchestral, solo and collaborative performer and as a respected teacher and coach. Appointed Acting Assistant Principal Violist during his twentieth season with the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra, he has performed as an extra musician with the National, Detroit, and Baltimore Symphonies and was previously the Assistant Principal Violist of the Virginia Symphony. He is a longstanding member of the Post-Classical Ensemble and the Grand Teton Music Festival and is on the faculty of the Sewanee Summer Music Festival. As a concerto soloist, Philippe has appeared with the Newark Symphony Orchestra, the National Repertory Orchestra, the Virginia Symphony, and the Eclipse Chamber Orchestra and has appeared as the featured soloist with the Fairfax Choral Society at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC. Other appearances have included performances with the orchestras of Georgetown University, Catholic University, and George Mason University. As a chamber musician and recitalist, he has performed with renowned international artists such as James Buswell, Nathaniel Rosen, Simone Porter, Susan Platts, the Coull Quartet, and Julian Rachlin and with numerous chamber music societies including The Pressenda Chamber Players, Musica Aperta, the Smithsonian Chamber Orchestra, the Chamber Music Series at the United States Holocaust Museum, and the Czech and Ukrainian Embassies’ series. Other appearances have included performances at the Supreme Court, the Garth Newell Music Center, Music Mountain, and Oxford University, UK and recent NPR Broadcasts for Performance Today hosted by Fred Childs. He performed on Broadway in Steve Martin and Edie Brickell’s Tony-nominated musical, Bright Star. Philippe is an Adjunct Professor of Viola at The George Mason University School of Music as well as at Washington Adventist University and The Catholic University of America’s Benjamin T. Rome School of Music, Drama, and Art. He coaches orchestral sectionals at Georgetown University and the Maryland Classic Youth Orchestra and has been a coach for the DC Youth Orchestra Program and a faculty member of the American Festival for the Arts, the Eastern Music Festival, Montgomery College, and the Ovations Summer String Academy. He was a Guest Artist-Teacher for the State Department’s Artist Exchange Program at the Kennedy Center and has served as an adjudicator for the Catholic University Young Musicians’ Competition, the Asian American Music Society’s annual String Competition, and the Dorothy Farnham Feuer Memorial Scholarship Competition. Recently he was a guest-lecturer at the Mason Community Arts Academy’s Viola Boot Camp. Reflecting his continuing interest in expanding the viola repertoire, he has set and edited several works of Marco Anzoletti (1867-1929) in their premiere editions, published by Gems Music Publications. In addition, the Russian composer, Sergey Akhunov has recently composed and dedicated a solo work for Mr. Chao. Earning degrees from the University of Minnesota and the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music, Mr. Chao also studied at the Britten-Pears School for Advanced Musical Studies in Aldeborough, England and at the Cleveland Institute of Music. His mentors include Roland and Almita Vamos, Michael Zaretsky, Gérard Caussé, Donald McInnes, and Robert Vernon. His strings are kindly sponsored by D’addario.
Hillary Herndon
viola

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Violist Hillary Herndon has earned a national reputation for her brilliant playing, “sweetly soaring tone” (Time Out New York), creative programming and insightful teaching. She has been heard on NPR and PBS and has collaborated with some of the world’s foremost artists, including Carol Wincenc, James VanDermark and Itzhak Perlman, who described Hillary as “having it all… a gifted teacher and an excellent musician.” Ms. Herndon’s recordings La Viola, American Voices and 1919: Hidden Treasures from an Epoch Year are available on MSR Classics.

Passionate about teaching, Ms. Herndon has published papers in the journals of the American String Teacher and American Viola Society Her recent appearances include performances and master classes at Carnegie Hall, the Sibelius Academy in Finland, Juilliard, Eastman, the University of Michigan, and the International Viola Congress. Ms. Herndon teaches at the University of Tennessee, where she is the founder of the annual Viola Celebration and in 2022-2023 at the Eastman School of Music as a sabbatical replacement for George Taylor. Herndon holds degrees from the Eastman and Juilliard Schools of Music and serves as President for the American Viola Society.

Sheldon Person smiles and holds his viola in front of him.
Sheldon Person
viola

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Praised by the Edmonton Journal for performing “with precision and grace,” and by NUVO Magazine for his “consistently rich tone [and] expressive, intense playing,” Sheldon Person is a violist in the Houston Symphony and enjoys an active career as a chamber musician, recitalist, and teacher.

As a member of the Houston Symphony, Mr. Person performs over 150 concerts annually with internationally-celebrated soloists and conductors, including Itzhak Perlman, Lang Lang, Yo-Yo Ma, Yefim Bronfman, Yuja Wang, Joshua Bell, Leonidas Kavakos, Hilary Hahn, and Emanuel Ax. He has toured with the Houston Symphony in seven countries on three continents and performed with them on their live recording of Alban Berg’s Wozzeck that received the 2017 Grammy Award. Mr. Person was previously a member of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and has also performed with the London Symphony Orchestra, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Mainly Mozart Festival Orchestra, and as soloist and guest principal with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra.

Since 2016 and 2017 respectively, he has been a faculty artist at the Sewanee Summer Music Festival and an artist at the Zenith Chamber Music Festival at Drake University. Mr. Person has appeared on the Houston Symphony Chamber Music Series Inaugural 2019-20 season, as well as at the Texas Music Festival, Musica Tra Amici, and Musiqa Houston. Radio broadcasts include appearances on Houston Public Radio and NPR. Mr. Person’s collaborations on new trios by Per Mårtensson and Karim Al-Zand were released on the Centaur Records label in 2017 and 2018. He has also given world and European premiere performances of Variations on a theme of Bartók, a work for viola and piano that was written for him by Mr. Al-Zand. Mr. Person has performed as a guest artist at Rice University, University of Houston, Indiana State University, and Michigan State University.

As an educator, Mr. Person is a regular faculty member at the Sewanee Summer Music Festival and has also served as an instructor for the Texas Music Festival, Texas All-State Strings Camp, Indiana All-State Orchestra, and Filarmónica Joven de Colombia. Members of his private studio have been accepted to study at Indiana University, Rice University, Oberlin Conservatory, the Manhattan School of Music, the Cleveland Institute of Music, University of Texas at Austin, and the University of Houston. You can find more information about him at sheldonperson.com.

Mr. Person is the current President of Third Space Music, a non-profit partnership between musicians from the Houston Symphony and the Houston community that presents 4 chamber music concerts annually and contributes to Houston-area non-profit organizations. You can find more information at thirdspacehtx.com.

As first prize winner of the Royal Overseas League’s Bernard Shore Viola Competition, Mr. Person performed recitals in London, including an appearance at St. Martin-in-the-Fields. While a member of the Artea String Quartet, Leverhulme Fellows at the Royal Academy of Music, Mr. Person performed chamber music throughout the U.K., including appearances at Wigmore Hall, the South Bank Centre, the Brighton Festival, Buckingham Palace, and live on BBC Radio 3. He was also the winner of the Wayne Crouse Viola Prize at the Corpus Christi International Competition for Piano and Strings.

Mr. Person holds degrees and certificates from The Guildhall School of Music and Drama (London), Indiana University, Rice University, and the University of Alberta. His principal teachers have included Atar Arad, David Takeno and Karen Ritscher. As a fellow of the Aspen Music Festival and School, he served as the Assistant Principal Viola of both the Aspen Festival and Chamber Orchestras.

Mr. Person performs on a modern viola by Theodore Skreko that was awarded the silver medal for tone at the 2010 Violin Society of America Competition. He is a native of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

Jason Calloway
cello

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Jason Calloway has performed to acclaim throughout the world as soloist and chamber musician. Currently cellist of the Amernet String Quartet, Ensemble-in-Residence at Florida International University, Mr. Calloway was previously a member of the Naumburg award-winning Biava Quartet, formerly in residence at the Juilliard School. Mr. Calloway gave his Carnegie Hall recital debut under the auspices of Artists International and has also been heard at Jazz at Lincoln Center, the 92nd Street Y, Disney Hall, and the Kennedy Center. He has recorded for the Bridge, Naxos, and Albany labels. Mr. Calloway has appeared at festivals including Lucerne, Spoleto, Darmstadt, Klangspuren (Austria), Taipei, Acanthes (Frances), Perpignan, Valencia, Citta’ della Pieve (Italy), Jerash (Jordan), Casals (Puerto Rico), Cervantino (Mexico), Blossom, Brevard, Great Lakes, Kingston, Rockport, Sedona, and Sarasota. He has collaborated in chamber music with members of the Cleveland, Curtis, Juilliard, and Miami quartets and with principal players of most of the world’s leading orchestras as well as with artists including Shmuel Ashkenasi, Roberto Diaz, Gary Hoffman, Ida Kavafian, Kim Kashkashian, Ronald Leonard, Ricardo Morales, Michael Tree, and the Penderecki and Tokyo quartets. A devoted advocate for new music, Mr. Calloway has collaborated with Ensemble InterContemporain and alongside members of Ensemble Modern, Klangforum Wien, and the Arditti and JACK quartets while giving hundreds of premieres by composers including Berio, Birtwistle, Hosokawa, Lachenmann, Pintscher, Tulve, and Tüür. He is as well artistic director of Shir Ami (www.shiramimusic.com), an ensemble dedicated to the preservation and performance of Jewish art music suppressed by the Nazis and Soviets. Mr. Calloway performs on a 1992 Michèle Ashley cello, a copy of the famous Sleeping Beauty of Montagnana, formerly owned by his teacher, Orlando Cole. Mr. Calloway is a native of Philadelphia.
Natasha Farny
cello

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American cellist Natasha Farny has distinguished herself as a musician with significant versatility, sensitivity, and experience. An accomplished soloist, Ms. Farny has performed with orchestras such as the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Buffalo Philharmonic, as well as several orchestras throughout the Western New York region. This winter she will perform Tchaikovsky’s Rococo Variations with the Schenectady Symphony. As a chamber musician, she is actively playing with two duos, the Amistella Duo with violist Kimberly Sparr and Ekstasis Duo with pianist Eliran Avni. Together, the Ekstasis Duo will present programs in several venues this year, including New York City’s Merkin Hall. She has taken solo and chamber music tours across Germany, the Czech Republic, and Brazil, and has played at many national venues like the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts in Chicago and Brooklyn’s Bargemusic “Here and Now” Series. Ms. Farny can be heard on recordings of chamber music with the Centaur label. She will release her solo CD of French cello music in January 2020. A vibrant teacher, she has been invited to give master classes at various institutions, including Weimar’s Hochschule für Musik Franz Liszt in Germany, the Brancaleoni International Music Festival in Italy, and the Eastman School of Music. After pursuing undergraduate studies at the Curtis Institute of Music and Yale University, Dr. Farny earned a master of music degree at the Eastman School of Music and a doctor of musical arts degree at the Juilliard School. Ms. Farny is the cello professor at the School of Music at the State University of New York in Fredonia. She has been honored there with several awards, including grants from the Faculty Student Association and the United University Professions, as well as the Hagan Young Scholar Artist Award for outstanding artistic performance. She has been appointed to summer music festivals in Piobbico, Italy, Sewanee, TN, Chestertown, MD, Boulder, CO, Anchorage, AK, and Sweden, ME.
Tim Pearson
bass, weeks 2-4

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Tim Pearson performs regularly with the Nashville Symphony, Kansas City Symphony and IRIS Orchestra. With the Gateway Chamber Orchestra he can be heard on the Summit record label playing music of Strauss, Mozart, Schrecker, Schoenberg and Enescu. As instructor of double bass at MTSU, he performs with the Stones River Chamber Players and in 2013 premiered the “Iberian Concerto for Double Bass and Wind Ensemble” by Spanish composer Jesus Santandreu. He earned degrees from the University of Memphis and Indiana University and did additional studies with Bruce Bransby and Paul Ellison. Tim resides in Nashville with his wife, pianist Megan Gale.
Sam Suggs
bass, week 1

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“An omnivorous musician, Samuel Suggs was recently named New Artist of the Month by Musical America after receiving the Gary Karr Prize for 1st place at the 2015 International Society of Bassists Solo Competition in which he performed many of his own compositions. He is the only bassist to win the Beijing International Music Festival Competition, and has performed concertos at the Kennedy Center and Northwestern University.

As a collaborative bassist, he has been a fellow at the Yellow Barn Chamber Music Festival and a Protégé Artist at Chamber Music Northwest where he additionally performed Hindemith and Frank Zappa on accordion as well as a mixture of jazz and four-hand classical piano in intimate club concerts. Suggs’ ensembles have won the Grand Prize at the 2015 Oneppo Chamber Series Competition, and he has toured internationally to Africa and Europe with his contemporary/jazz group, Triplepoint Trio.

Suggs earned honors studying music theory and cognition at Northwestern University while working as the youngest principal bassist of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago as a substitute for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra MusicNOW contemporary ensemble, and in various outreach programs including leading the Carlos Chavez Youth Orchestra and performing alongside Yo-Yo Ma and Emanuel Ax.

Passionate about music from the 17th and 18th centuries, Suggs has served as principal bass of the inaugural Berwick Academy for Historical Performance at the Oregon Bach Festival, premiered his own construction of Haydn’s lost Violoneconcerto and has studied harpsichord with Steven Alltop and Arthur Haas.

Suggs has received commissions for fresh arrangements and theatrical/film scores from Chamber Music Society at Lincoln Center, Phoenix Chamber Music Society, Chamber Music Northwest, the Yale School of Drama and Yale School of Art. As a performer-composer, Suggs is committed to expanding the literature of the double bass canon with flattering new music as well as model compositions in various traditional styles, blending formalism and narrative, and drawing from the soup of 21st century agenrality.

Self-published under Mikroseismos Music, his recent work includes Otello Fantasy,which re-contextualizes both the story and function of the standard Verdi opera excerpt into a virtuosic recital piece; a fantasy on the famous Purcell lament for unaccompanied bass, or double bass and soprano; Postlude, a companion piece to David Walter’s (currently) underperformed Prelude; Daft Chaconne, an unaccompanied chaconne interpolating Daft Punk’s electronic favorite, “Around the World”; and Concerto after Haydn, a three-movement concerto modeled after the two surviving measures of Haydn’s Violone concerto – written for standard rather than Viennese tuning.

Currently a DMA candidate at the Yale School of Music, Suggs has received a Presser Foundation Award, as well as the Dean’s Prize, the school’s highest excellence award, and has studied with many diverse master bassists including Don Palma, Peter Lloyd, Edgar Meyer, DaXun Zhang, Paul Bresciani, Andrew Raciti, Jeff Bradetich, Rob Kassinger, and Jeff Weisner.

Towards the goal of placing all forms of music along a continuum of living, breathing art music, Suggs champions the omnivorous musical appetite of our generation, laying side-by-side the music of Bach, Daft Punk, Messaien, Radiohead, Pärt and treating each work of genius with equal attention to compositional detail. A recent crossover project paired classic Hitchcock film excerpts, evocative cocktails, and bold arrangements of familiar symphonic favorites while re-examining the essence of these artists in the casual setting of a feathered masquerade.

Meghan Berindean
student chamber music coordinator

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Originally from Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, cellist Meghan Berindean is currently serving as Assistant Professor of Low Strings at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee. An enthusiastic performer of chamber music, Berindean spent two years as a member of the Eppes Quartet, the graduate string quartet at Florida State University. Previously, Berindean was a founding member of the Judson String Quartet, a Cleveland-based group that was the recipient of the Francis E. Sykora Outreach Grant through the Cleveland Institute of Music. Additionally, she was a first prize-winner of the MENC Pennsylvania State Chamber Group Competition as a member of the Valens Piano Quartet. Berindean also spent a summer as a member of the string quartet in residence at the Interlochen Summer Arts Academy, where she also served as a faculty member. More recently, she enjoys spending her summers at Sewanee Summer Music Festival, where she coordinates the string chamber music. As an orchestral player, Berindean is currently co-principal cello of the Clarksville- based Gateway Chamber Orchestra, She has served as principal cello of Sinfonia Gulf Coast, Northern Tier Symphony, and Altoona Symphony, as well as assistant principal of Williamsport Symphony and the Pennsylvania Centre Orchestra. She performs frequently with Charleston Symphony, Paducah Symphony, Mobile Symphony, Southwest Florida Symphony, and Tallahassee Symphony. As the winner of the 2016 Florida State University Doctoral Concerto Competition. Berindean was a featured soloist in the University Symphony Orchestra’s 2017 season. She has performed in masterclasses with Steven Isserlis, Raphael Wallfisch, Colin Carr, Andrés Diaz, Lynn Harrell, and David Finckel. Berindean recently completed her doctoral degree in cello performance at Florida State University as a student of Gregory Sauer, writing her dissertation on the cello music of Bohuslav Martinu. She received her Master of Music degree of the Cleveland Institute of Music, where she was a student of Sharon Robinson. She achieved her Bachelor of Music degree in cello performance from the Pennsylvania State University, as a student of Kim Cook, where she was the recipient of the Eleanor Beene Scholarship Prize.

WOODWINDS

Donna Shin
flute

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Flutist Donna Shin has been praised for her beautifully-spun phrases, seductive sound, sterling technique, and charismatic exchanges with the audience. Described as “dazzling” by the Boston Globe, Shin has built an enviable reputation as a versatile performer of solo, chamber, orchestra, jazz and ancient Asian repertoire. Performing in concert halls throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia, she is admired for her adventurous programming and expressive flair. Devoted to the role of artist-teacher, she is the flute professor at the University of Washington School of Music after holding faculty posts at the University of South Carolina School of Music and Oklahoma State University. She frequently appears as artist-performer and master class clinician at universities and flute clubs throughout the world, modeling the artist-teacher path for young flutists.

Shin has been featured in solo performances with the North Korean National Symphony Orchestra, People’s Liberation Army Band of China, Seattle Symphony Orchestra, Eastman Philharmonia, New England Conservatory Wind Ensemble, University of South Carolina Wind Ensemble, Oklahoma State University Wind Ensemble, and University of Washington Wind Ensemble. In 2010, Shin premiered D. J. Sparr’s Precious Metal: Concerto for Flute and Winds in Seattle and cities throughout Japan and China. She recently premiered Hilary Tann’s Shoji, a work for flute and oboe, at the University of Texas at Austin, D. J. Sparr’s Fantasia for Flute and Electronics: Sugarhouse at the Third Practice Electroacoustic Music Festival at the University of Richmond, and performed Gabriela Frank’s Illapa: Tone Poem for flute and orchestra with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra.

Shin performed for two seasons as principal flute with the Heidelberg Schlossfestspiele Orchester in Germany. In Boston, she performed with the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra, the New Bedford Symphony, and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Chamber Orchestras. She has also performed with the South Carolina Philharmonic, Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, New World Symphony, Tulsa Signature Symphony, Lake Placid Sinfonietta, Tanglewood Music Center, National Repertory Orchestra, Aspen Music Festival, National Orchestral Institute, and Norfolk Chamber Music Festival.

Shin has won prizes in competitions held by the National Flute Association, April Spring Friendship Arts Festival in North Korea, Performers of Connecticut, James Pappoutsakis Society, and Seattle Flute Society, to name a few. As a founding member of Paragon Winds woodwind quintet, she was awarded fellowships from the New England Conservatory and Yale University’s Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, and won the Grand Prize at the Coleman National Chamber Ensemble Competition in Pasadena, California.

Committed to developing young artists and reaching out to audiences, Shin has introduced new music programs to a variety of communities, ranging from rural Oklahoma to communist North Korea to castle communities in northern Italy. Recent international concert tours include: Brazil, China, Japan, and Uzbekistan.

Shin earned degrees with the highest honors from the Interlochen Arts Academy, Eastman School of Music and the New England Conservatory, including the esteemed Performer’s Certificate at the Eastman School. As instructor of chamber music and flute at the University of Rochester and the Eastman School of Music, she was awarded the “Eastman School of Music Excellence in Teaching” prize. During her doctoral studies at Eastman, she became the first woodwind player in the school’s history to be nominated for the highly coveted Artist’s Certificate.

During the summer months, Shin performs as artist-teacher at the Sewanee Summer Music Festival in Tennessee, ARIA International Summer Academy in Massachusetts, and Snowater Flute Festival in Washington.

Nermis gives the camera a soft smile. There is a reflection of magenta light around her hair as she rests her oboe against her shoulder.
Nermis Mieses
oboe

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Nermis Mieses is the Associate Professor of Oboe at Michigan State University, a versatile performer who enjoys bringing to life oboe literature from the baroque to the 21st century. This has led her to earn top prizes at the prestigious Barbirolli International Oboe Competition, the First International Oboe Competition in Santa Catarina, Brazil, and the Matthew Ruggiero International Woodwind Competition. Now, she passionately serves as adjudicator of multiple competitions and formerly served as chair of the International Double Reed Society Gillet-Fox Competition for Oboe.

As part of her research interests, she continues to champion challenging repertoire from the iconic French oboe composer, Gilles Silvestrini, as well as music from underrepresented composers. As a recitalist, she is frequently featured on university and conservatory stages across the nation and as part of the International Double Reed Society annual conferences.

Equally dedicated to ensemble playing, she enjoyed nine seasons as Principal Oboe of the Michigan Opera Theatre and has frequently performed with orchestras such as Ann Arbor, Sphinx, ProMusica Chamber, Rochester, Lexington, and the Michigan Philharmonic. Internationally, she has performed with Camerata Colonial in Dominican Republic, the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra, the Thy Chamber Music Festival in Denmark and the Chineke! Orchestra in Europe.

Passionate about her oboe studio, Dr. Mieses is known for her nurturing yet ambitious teaching style rooted in a culture of self-worth and belonging. She instructs with an evolving teaching philosophy that seeks meaningful experiences through the exploration of music. Excited about mentoring, she guides her students to grow as learners, instrumentalists, musicians and ultimately, artists. Previously, she taught at Bowling Green State University, University of Kentucky, Ohio Northern and Hillsdale College.

She holds D.M.A. and M.M. degrees from the University of Michigan under Dr. Nancy Ambrose King, where she was recently conferred the 2020 Paul Boylan Award by the School of Music Theatre and Dance Alumni Society of Governors. She is a proud mother of two children and frequently performs with her husband and pianist, Xavier Suarez.

Kathleen Mulcahy
clarinet

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Kathleen Mulcahy was appointed as Director of Woodwinds and Assistant Professor of Clarinet at George Mason University in August 2018, after serving as Adjunct Professor of Clarinet since in 2012. She performs frequently with the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra and the National Symphony. Dr. Mulcahy has held tenured positions with the Annapolis Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, Grant Park Orchestra, and ProMusica Chamber Orchestra. She is currently principal clarinetist with the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra.

An active chamber musician and recitalist, Dr. Mulcahy performs regularly on the Faculty Artist Series at George Mason University and has been a featured soloist with the Mason Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band. She has performed on chamber series in venues such as the Kennedy Center, the National Gallery of Art, the German Embassy, and the National Cathedral. In July 2017, she performed the world premiere of Howard Buss’ Divertissements for Clarinet and Percussion at the International Clarinet Association’s Clarinetfest in Orlando, FL, and presented a recital at the 2019 ICA Clarinetfest in Knoxville, TN. Dr. Mulcahy is also an RYT 200 certified yoga instructor, and has created several workshops focused on yoga for the performing artist. She has presented recitals and masterclasses at colleges all over the country, including Lamar University, High Point University, Penn State, and the Eastman School of Music.

In the summer, Dr. Mulcahy serves as Coordinator of Summer Music Intensives for the Mason Community Arts Academy, and is also the co-director of the Mason Summer Clarinet Academy. She can also be seen with the Wolf Trap Orchestra in the pit for Wolf Trap Opera productions, or on stage at the Filene Center accompanying a wide variety of acts.

Previously, Dr. Mulcahy served as a clarinet instructor at the State University of New York at Fredonia. She holds the DMA and BM degrees from The Ohio State University and the MM degree and Performer’s Certificate from the Eastman School of Music. Her principal teachers have included James Pyne, Peter Hadcock, and Kenneth Grant. Kathleen Mulcahy is a Buffet Group USA performing artist and a member of the Health and Wellness Committee for the International Clarinet Association.

Gabriel Beavers
bassoon

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Gabriel Beavers is the Associate Professor of Bassoon at the University of Miami Frost School of Music. Beavers is also a member of Miami’s Nu-Deco Ensemble and serves as 2nd bassoon with the Music in the Mountains Festival Orchestra in Durango, CO. Prior to joining the faculty at Frost, he served on the faculty of Louisiana State University School of Music and as principal bassoon with the Baton Rouge Symphony. Formerly a fellow with the New World Symphony, he has also served as Principal Bassoon with the Virginia Symphony, Acting Principal Bassoon with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra and the Jacksonville Symphony and as Acting Second Bassoon with the Milwaukee Symphony for one season. Mr. Beavers has also previously held the position of Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Music. In addition to his orchestral activities, he has an active schedule of solo and chamber performances. He has appeared as a soloist with the Frost Wind Ensemble, Greater Miami Symphonic Band, Chesapeake Bay Wind Ensemble, Virginia Symphony, Baton Rouge Symphony and Louisiana Sinfonietta and has given recitals throughout the United States and at international festivals in Japan and Brazil. His solo albums, Gordon Jacob: Music for Bassoon and A Quirky Dream, are available on Mark Records and his recording of the Dinos Constantinides Bassoon Concerto was published by Centaur Records. He attended both Boston University and Southern Methodist University where he studied with Matthew Ruggiero and Wilfred Roberts.
Carl Rath
bassoon

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Carl Rath teaches bassoon, chamber music, and popular music at the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music in Appleton, WI. In the summers, he teaches and performs at the Sewanee (TN) Summer Music Festival and Red Lodge (MT) Music Festival. Rath’s performing career includes 22 years as Principal Bassoon in the Oklahoma City Philharmonic Orchestra, 31 years in the Oklahoma Woodwind Quintet, and 17 summers as Principal Bassoon in the Classical Music Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria. He has performed in China, Argentina, Taiwan, Canada, Austria, Hungary, England and the U.S. His performances have been featured on national and international radio programs and on five CDs. He has presented masterclasses in Beijing, Shanghai, Taipei, Buenos Aires, and the U.S. and guest performer and clinician for the Bocal Majority Music Camp (Dallas) and Double Reed Days in Wisconsin, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas, and Utah. He is Emeritus Professor of Music at the University of Oklahoma. Supplement to his bassoon and reed-making instruction, he formed the Sooner Bassooners at OU and the ViBE at Lawrence for which he has arranged numerous works for 4-8 bassoons. These arrangements, some available through Imagine Music (NY), are a varied repertoire of classical, jazz, rock, and popular music. Rath studied bassoon with Fred Schroeder, Stephen Basson, Stanley Scheller, and Wil Roberts. A patron member of the International Double Reed Society, he has performed at 20 annual conferences and is one of the few who has hosted the Conference twice.
Chad Burrow
clarinet, sabbatical 2023

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Clarinetist, Chad Burrow, has a multifaceted career as an educator, solo artist, chamber musician and orchestral musician. The European press has said that Chad performs with “brilliant technique and tonal beauty mixed with an expressive ferocity.” Danish critic, Henrik Svane, went on to describe a performance as filled with “virtuosity, energy, and power without compromise.” The New York Times recently called a Carnegie Hall appearance in Poulenc’s, Sonata, as giving a “strong impression” and being a “bright and genial account.”

In 2009, Chad was appointed to the clarinet faculty of the University of Michigan, where he teaches clarinet, chamber music and has served as the director for the Michigan Chamber Players. Additionally, he serves as co-artistic director for the Brightmusic Society of Oklahoma (http://brightmusic.org) and is on the faculty of the Sewanee Summer Music Festival (www.sewaneemusicfestival.org) and Alpenkammermusik Festival in Austria (http://alpenkammermusik.com). Chad is the current principal clarinetist with the Ann Arbor Symphony and regularly performs with the Detroit Symphony and the Michigan Opera Theatre Orchestra. He is also the former principal clarinetist of the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, the New Haven Symphony, Quartz Mountain Music Festival, the Arizona Musicfest Orchestra and the past Associate Professor of Clarinet at Oklahoma City University.

Chad’s recent concert engagements abroad have included concerts in Austria, Denmark’s Thy Chamber Music Festival, a recital in the National Concert Hall in Taipei, Taiwan, concerts in Strasbourg, France and Concerto appearances with the Taichung Philharmonic, the “Classic” Orchestra of Taichung and the Shin Sharn Ensemble in Taipei. Recent performances in the United States have included appearances with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center in Alice Tully Hall, Chamber Music Northwest and performances on a series of Benny Goodman centennial concerts in Carnegie Hall and Yale University. Other performances have included venues at Rice University, the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York, three International Clarinet Association conferences, Northwestern University, the Music Mansion in Providence (RI), the Notre Dame University, Texas Tech University, University of North Texas, the University of Texas in Austin, Louisiana State University and the University of Oklahoma Clarinet Symposium, among many others.

Chad has recordings released by Albany Records, CD Baby, Centaur Records, and Wei Studios in Taiwan. A recent recording of Brahms and Schumann, with pianist Amy Cheng, was released on CD Baby. Chad is also the clarinetist with Trio Solari. The trio has had a regular touring schedule around the world since 2006. Trio Solari’s most recent recording, on the Centaur label, features works of Bartok, Khachaturian, Milhaud and Edward Knight. A recording of William Bolcom’s, Clarinet Concerto with the Michigan Symphony Band is awaiting release.

Chad is the winner of prizes and awards from the 2001 Young Concert Artist International Competition in New York City, the 2000 Woolsey Hall Competition, the 2000 Artist International Competition, and the 1997 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition

Chad serves as an artist for Backun Musical Services. He plays exclusively on Backun, MOBA clarinets.

BRASS

Peter Bond
trumpet

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Peter Bond has been a member of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra since 1992. Raised in Rockford Illinois, his path to the “Met” was atypical; while his future orchestra colleagues were attending professional training programs like Interlochen and Tanglewood, Mr. Bond spent summers on the road with a drum and bugle corps and the rest of his time focused on big band jazz. This pattern continued through college at Western Illinois University, where he received a degree in Music Education. It was only in graduate school at Georgia State University that he turned his attention to orchestral trumpet, studying with John Head, Principal Trumpet of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. He has also studied on an “outpatient” basis with Vincent Cichowicz, Adolph Herseth, Arnold Jacobs, Robert Nagle, and James Pandolfi.

After graduate school (MM 1981), Mr. Bond remained in Atlanta, enjoying a busy and varied career as a freelance musician. In 1987 his first orchestra audition resulted in being named Principal Trumpet of the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra in Albuquerque. Five years later, he auditioned for the Met and was offered his current position.

Mr. Bond enjoys getting out of the opera pit now and again for solo appearances, and is increasingly in demand as a trumpet teacher and clinician. He is currently on the faculty of the NYU Steinhardt School of Music and the Cali School of Music at Montclair State University. He lives in Leonia, NJ with his wife of 34 years, singer Carla Reilly-Bond.

Imani Duhe
assistant trumpet faculty

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Imani Duhe is a versatile young musician from Atlanta, Georgia who is known for her rich, soulful trumpet playing. Starting music at a young age she’s been surrounded by different styles of music her entire life. Imani has been performing regularly with orchestras, chamber ensembles, and in small solo settings as a trumpeter for over 12 years. Through her love for the trumpet and music she also discovered a talent for composing her own songs, which she performs with her personal ensembles. Imani has performed on podcasts, in multiple large music venues including the Hollywood Bowl, has had the opportunity to play for live televised events, popular music festivals, and continues to make her name known as a sought after musician. Imani has worked with artists such as Ms. Lauryn Hill, Ani Difranco, The Yellowjackets, P. Diddy and more. Imani also teaches for the Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles as a trumpet instructor and brass specialist as well as gives master classes around the greater Los Angeles area. In addition to an active performing life, Imani is an avid activist for women and civil rights. Ms. Duhe received her Bachelors from Manhattan School of Music and is completing her masters at the University of Southern California. Imani is a current Shires Rising Artist.
Jason Allison
horn

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Jason Allison is a native of Western Pennsylvania and is currently a resident of Pittsburgh, where he is an active member of the local musical community. As a performer he can be heard in the French horn sections of the Pittsburgh Opera and Ballet Orchestras as well as the Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera Orchestra. He has also been a substitute horn player with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Allison holds contracts with the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra as well as Pittsburgh’s historic River City Brass, which is the only full time, professional brass band in the United States. He is also an active performer throughout Ohio and other parts of West Virginia, where he appears regularly with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra, West Virginia Symphony Orchestra, the Akron Symphony Orchestra, and the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra.

As a music educator, Mr. Allison is on the faculty of the University of Pittsburgh, Chatham University and the Pre-College program at Carnegie Mellon University. He also works as an instructor with the River City Youth Brass Band as well as maintaining a private studio of horn students from the greater Pittsburgh area.

Mr. Allison holds a BS in Music Education and a BA in Music Performance from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where he studied with Jack Scandrett, formerly of the Pittsburgh Opera and Ballet Orchestras. He also received an MA in French Horn Performance from Duquesne University, where he studied with Bill Caballero and Zach Smith, both of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.

Caroline Kinsey
horn

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Caroline Kinsey, a native of San Antonio, TX, is Principal Horn with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra after 11 years as Principal Horn of the Arkansas Symphony, Little Rock, AR. She received her Bachelor of Music degree and Performer’s Certificate from the Eastman School of Music in 1990 and her Professional Studies Certificate from the Cleveland Institute of Music in 1993. Ms. Kinsey has toured throughout Europe and Japan, and has played and been a member of several orchestras across the United States including the Honolulu Symphony, the Corpus Christi Symphony, Pro Musica Chamber Orchestra (Columbus, OH), and the Canton (OH) Symphony Orchestra. Other orchestral appearances have been with the San Antonio Symphony, Nashville Symphony, Illinois Symphony, the National Repertory Orchestra, the Hawaii Opera Company, and the National Orchestral Institute.

In addition to orchestral playing, Ms. Kinsey has been a guest artist at several horn workshops and master classes in Arkansas and Texas. In August of 2004 she was invited to spend two weeks in Santa Cruz, Bolivia teaching and holding master classes to horn players at the local performing arts academy and air force bands. Ms. Kinsey is also the Horn Instructor/Mentor with the Hot Springs Music Festival in Hot Spring, AR.

Before coming to Memphis in 2005, Caroline was co-founder and principal horn of the Pinnacle Players Music Festival in Little Rock, AR as well as Music Librarian and Outreach Services Coordinator for the Arkansas Symphony. She was also Horn Instructor at the University of Mississippi “Ole Miss”, Horn Lecturer at the University of Central Arkansas, Ouachita Baptist University and The University of Arkansas at Monticello.

Currently, in addition to the MSO, Caroline is Manager of Lukas Horns, a custom French horn building business, Horn Mentor of the Hot Springs Music Festival and Artistic Operations Manager with the Sewanee Summer Music Festival. And last but certainly not least she is a mom to her amazing 12 year old son, Lukas, their Boxer doggy, Clark and newest family member, kitty Clover!
Ms. Kinsey plays exclusively on a Lukas Horn L Model.
www.carolinekinseyhorn.com

Joshua Bynum
trombone

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Hailed for his “inspiring energy, clear musical conviction, and warm lyrical tone” (International Trombone Association Journal), Josh Bynum keeps an active schedule balancing roles as educator, soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral trombonist. Dr. Bynum is the Professor of Trombone at the University of Georgia, a position he has held since 2010. He also serves as trombone artist-faculty for the Sewanee Summer Music Festival, and is Artistic Director for the annual Georgia Trombone Summit.

Josh performs regularly as a first-call substitute with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and was contracted to serve as second trombonist for the entire 2015-16 season. Highlights with the ASO include two commercial recordings (Jonathan Leshnoff: Zohar & Christopher Theofanidis: Creation/Creator), and a sold-out Carnegie Hall performance of Johannes Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem in celebration Robert Shaw’s legacy. Bynum is also a member of the Iris Orchestra, under the direction of Michael Stern, and regularly performs with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, Atlanta Opera, and Atlanta Ballet.

Josh has given clinics and featured performances at the American Trombone Workshop, International Trombone Festival, and Georgia Music Educators Association Conference. He has also been an invited artist and lecturer at various workshops and universities across the country. His solo CD Catalyst was the recipient of the UGA Creative Research Medal in Arts & Humanities, and is available through Potenza Music, iTunes, and Amazon. His contemporary chamber group the [MOD]ular Ensemble is featured on the album New
Cartography, performing the music of Peter Van Zandt Lane.

Bynum holds degrees from Temple University, the University of Iowa, and Jacksonville State University. He is the editor of the ITA Journal’s Pedagogy Corner column, and is an Artist & Clinician for the Edwards Instrument Company.
www.joshbynum.com

Eric Bubacz smiles at the camera and holds his tuba.
Eric Bubacz
tuba

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Eric Bubacz has an extensive career as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral performer. He studied for three years at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY before transferring to the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where he completed his Bachelor of Music. While in school, Eric was a member two different brass quintets, both of which competed and placed second at the New York Brass Conference Quintet Competition. During the summers, he attended several noted festivals including: The National Repertory Orchestra, Rencontres Musicales d’Evian, Sully Music Festival, Centre d’Arts Orford, Harmony Ridge Brass Seminar, Festival of Art and Musical Excellence and Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, where he was the first tubaist to win the Chamber Music Prize. Shortly after graduating from Curtis, he attended the Colonial Euphonium and Tuba Institute where he won second prize at the International Tuba Solo Competition. He also placed first on tuba in the International Women’s Brass Conference Solo Competition.

As an orchestral player, Eric has been named Principal Tuba of the Haddonfield Symphony (1992-1997), the Canton Symphony (1998-2007) and the Reading Symphony (1996-present).He has also performed as an extra musician with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra and the Cleveland Blossom Festival Band. In 1997, Eric began working as an extra with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.By 2000, Eric was also playing with the Pittsburgh Symphony Brass and can be heard on several of their recordings, including Cantate Hodie – Sing Forth this Day and The Spirit of Christmas. From 2002-2005, Eric regularly acted as Principal Tuba of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.Highlights of his work with them include four European Tours, three performances at Carnegie Hall and a performance at the Vatican for Pope John Paul II.

Since moving to Atlanta in the 2006, Eric has become an active teacher and performer throughout the Southeast. In 2007, he was appointed Principal Tuba of the La Grange Symphony. He has also substituted regularly with the Atlanta Symphony, Birmingham Symphony, Knoxville Symphony, Greenville Symphony, Columbus Symphony and Augusta Symphony. That year he was also invited to be the guest artist for Jacksonville State University’s premier Octubafest in Jacksonville, Alabama. Most recently, he has been appointed adjunct professor of tuba at Georgia State University, in addition to his extensive studio of private students in the Atlanta metro area.

PERCUSSION

John Kilkenny

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John Kilkenny is a percussionist, conductor, and artistic leader who is rewriting the rules of a classical music career. John has served as Artistic and Executive Director of the Sewanee Summer Music Festival,  in 2018. During this tenure, the festival has seen a 30% increase in enrollment, a 147% increase in annual giving, two new endowment gifts, and a vast expansion of artistic and educational programs. As part of this expansion, In January 2021, the Sewanee Music Festival launched its first-ever WinterFest. Offered digitally, this groundbreaking new program focused on career development, community engagement, performance practice, and in-depth study of orchestral and symphonic literature. In 2022 Sewanee Summer Music Festival will become the Sewanee Music Center, overseeing the Summer Festival and the University Performing Arts Series. In total, the Music Center will reach thousands of participants and patrons annually through both in person and online programming.Artistically, The SSMF has shone brightly during John’s tenure. In recent seasons, the festival has commissioned or  premiered new works by Avner Dorman, Alejandro Vinao, Jorge Variego, Adolphus Hailstork, and Timothy K. Adams, Jr. The 2023 festival will premiere a new work for voice and chamber ensemble by acclaimed composer Shawn Okpebholo. In 2019 the festival added a two week string academy, and in 2021 launched OperaFest Sewanee. Guest conductors have included Robert Moody, JoAnn Falletta, Gemma New, Kalena Bovell, Jacomo Bairos, Jeffery Grogan, Andrew Crust, and Janna Hymes.A committed and inclusive leader, John has worked with his colleagues at the festival to build deep and meaningful relationships with a number of Musical Pathways programs, resulting in one of the most diverse student populations of any summer program.Hailed as a “particularly fine timpanist” by the Washington Post, John maintains a dynamic career as a soloist, orchestral, and chamber musician. Recent concerto performances include the Philip Glass Concerto Fantasy for Two Timpanists, Michael Daugherty’s Raise the Roof, and UFO percussion concerto, and Viet Cuong’s Re(NEW)al concerto for quartet and orchestra. His orchestral work includes regular engagements with virtually every symphony and opera company in the DC region.For 15 years, John was Director of Percussion Studies and Associate Professor at George Mason University. The Mason percussion group, which John founded, has performed all over the world, including tours of Costa Rica, scheduled tours of China, and clinic performances at the Virginia Music Educators, New York State Music Educators Western International Band Conference, The College Music Society mid-Atlantic and National Convention, and twice at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention.Recognized internationally as an engaging and thoughtful clinician, John has enjoyed the unique opportunity to work with gifted young musicians at a wide range of institutions, including the Eastman School of Music, the Shepherd School at Rice University, The University of Michigan, The Juilliard Pre-College, Interlochen School for the Arts, University of Tennessee, University of North Carolina, The National Institute of Music in San Jose Costa Rica, The University of Costa Rica, and the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. He has presented a regular series of workshops for the percussion students at New York University for several years.John studied conducting with Anthony Maiello and began early percussion training with Jonathan Haas and William Richards. He went on to receive his bachelor’s degree at the Juilliard School under the tutelage of Greg Zuber and Daniel Druckman. He completed a Master’s Degree at Temple University, where he studied with legendary percussionist Alan Abel. Additional studies include management and leadership training at the Devos Institute at the Kennedy Center, The Fundraising Standard, and The Harvard Business School online. Starting in March 2021, John assumed the role of Executive Director of the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera, alongside his continued work at Sewanee.
Phillip O’Banion

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As artistic director of the percussion program at Boyer, Phillip O’Banion has assembled a dynamic roster of faculty artists that include some of the most recognized performers and teachers in the country. Temple’s percussion program draws students from across the United States and abroad.

A versatile professional, O’Banion performs regularly with the Philadelphia Orchestra and other symphonic ensembles, plays for theater companies and new music groups, and has appeared as both performer and conductor on chamber music programs presented by the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society. He remains active as both recitalist and clinician, nationally and internationally, and is frequently engaged as a soloist with orchestras, wind ensembles, choruses, and percussion groups. Recent international engagements have included performances and workshops in Ontario, Canada and Patagonia, Argentina, and the South American premiere of Philippe Manoury’s ‘Le Livre des Claviers’ at the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires.

Dedicated to exploring the use of percussion in new music, O’Banion has already been a part of two notable premieres in 2017. A world premiere of Philadelphia composer Robert Capanna’s ‘What I Know’with the Network for New Music chamber ensemble, and then the U.S. premiere of James MacMillan’s ‘Symphony No. 4’ with the Pittsburgh Symphony.

Furthermore, over the last five years O’Banion has commissioned and premiered over thirty new works. As part of this creative process, O’Banion has collaborated closely with composers such as Adam Silverman, Marc Mellits, Alejandro Vinao, Gordon Stout, Ivan Trevino, Lane Harder, Patrick Long, Russell Hartenberger, Baljinder Sekhon, Cynthia Folio, and Bob Becker. Last April his ensemble gave the Philadelphia premiere of Reich’s ‘Music for 18 Musicians.’

O’Banion’s discography includes work across multiple genres – symphonic, chamber, commercial, and solo. These performances can be heard on the Telarc, Gasparo, Bridge, Lyrichord, Zomba, and BCM+D labels. 2016 releases include Adam Silverman’s ‘Carbon Paper and Nitrogen Ink’ for solo marimba and wind ensemble, and Digital Divide, his solo debut album featuring new works for percussion and electronics.

Professor O’Banion is an active member of the Percussive Arts Society, serving as co-chair of the Symphonic Committee and as Vice President for the Pennsylvania state chapter. He has appeared as clinician, conductor, and panel moderator at PASIC 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015, numerous ‘Days of Percussion,’ and the 5th annual World Vibes Congress. O’Banion proudly endorses Pearl/Adams musical instruments, Sabian cymbals, Evans drumheads, Vic Firth sticks and mallets, and Grover Pro Percussion products.

HARP

Gaye LeBlanc

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Ms. Gaye LeBlanc, a Dallas native, is enjoying an active career as an orchestral harpist, recording artist, teacher and class lecturer. She is currently principal harpist with the Oklahoma City Philharmonic since 1998, Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Oklahoma and recently joined the Sewanee Music Festival as harp faculty. Her orchestral experience also includes having played principal harp with Fort Smith Symphony (AR) Tulsa Symphony and Opera, Lawton Philharmonic (OK) OK Mozart Festival with the NY Amici Orchestra and nine years with Arizona Music-fest in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Before making Oklahoma her home, Ms. LeBlanc played principal harp in several orchestras in the metropolitan Dallas area including Richardson Symphony, Plano Symphony, Irving Symphony, Abilene Philharmonic and Opera, and Shreveport Symphony (LA).

Ms. LeBlanc regularly performs with touring Broadway show orchestras throughout the years, including My Fair Lady, Peter Pan, and Beauty and the Beast. Also with OKC Lyric Theater orchestra which shows include The King and I, Carousel, The Sound of Music, The Wizard of Oz, Oklahoma, Singin in the Rain, Evita, The Producers, A Chorus Line and The Fantastiks mostly conducted by David Andrews Rogers (DAR).

She has also been active as a concerto soloist with orchestras throughout the area performing composers Debussy, Mozart, Malecki and most recently the Hannah Lash Concerto No. 1 for Harp and chamber orchestra with the OKC Philharmonic in May, 2021. Critics praised her performance as providing a “range of color and virtuosic energy which brough sharp staccatos, disjunct shapes and striking contrasts into relief.” (The Oklahoman) or “whose virtuoso work in the famous duet and throughout the opera was simply wonderful” (Opera News) for Bizet’s opera The Pearl Fishers.

As a recording artist, she has recorded movements of Benjamin Britten’s Ceremony of Carols with the Dallas Orpheus Chamber Singers along with the Stephen Paulus’ Three Nativity Carols. In 2010 and 2011, Ms. LeBlanc recorded the William Grant Still Symphonies No. 2 & 3, Symphonies No. 4 & 5 with the Fort Smith Symphony (Naxos label)

In concert, she has backed a wide variety of artists, including Ray Charles, Josh Groban, Ben Folds, Joshua Bell, YoYo Ma, Kristin Chenoweth, Vince Gill, Garth Brooks amongst others.=

As a teacher, Ms. LeBlanc has been at the University of Oklahoma since 1998 where she built the harp program from the ground up. Starting with a dormant department, she found the stolen OU harp, raised funds for two new Lyon & Healy harps, received two more beautiful instruments, added Harp Pedagogy, Harp Orchestral Literature, harp ensemble to the degree program and has graduated several harp students throughout the years. She has also been teaching her two classes of Understanding Music to Non-majors since 2000 and enjoys meeting all types of students who thought they “didn’t like” Classical music.

Ms. LeBlanc has also taught harp at Oklahoma City University (OCU) from 1998 – 2010, University of Central Oklahoma (UCO) from 2000 – 2001 and the University of North Texas (UNT) from 2005 – 2006. She started and directed the Harp Oklahoma Workshop from 2012 –2020 with other faculty harpists Rachel Starr Ellins, Shelly Du, Julie Smith Phillips and Yolanda Kondonassis. She has taught at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp and Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute.

Her education consists of starting the harp at the age of 20 after many years of piano, theory, organ and flute. Ms. LeBlanc earned from her Bachelors in Performance at the University of North Texas with harp professor Ellen Ritscher and Masters of Music in Performance with Dallas Symphony Harpist Susan Pejovich. She spent five summers at the Salzedo School in Camden, Maine with Alice Chalifoux and two additional summers at Boston University Tanglewood Institute with Lucile Lawrence.

PIANO

Steve Beck

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A recent New York concert by pianist Steven Beck was described as “exemplary” and “deeply satisfying” by Anthony Tommasini in the New York Times. He is a graduate of the Juilliard School, where his teachers were Seymour Lipkin, Peter Serkin and Bruce Brubaker.

Mr. Beck made his concerto debut with the National Symphony Orchestra, and has toured Japan as soloist with the New York Symphonic Ensemble. His annual Christmas Eve performance of Bach’s Goldberg Variations at Bargemusic has become a New York institution. He has also performed as soloist and chamber musician at Alice Tully Hall, the Kennedy Center, the Library of Congress, Weill Recital Hall, Merkin Hall, and Miller Theater, as well as on WNYC; summer appearances have been at the Aspen Music Festival and Lincoln Center Out of Doors. He has performed as a musician with the New York City Ballet and the Mark Morris Dance Group, and as an orchestral musician he has appeared with the New York Philharmonic, the New York City Ballet Orchestra, and Orpheus.

Mr. Beck is an experienced performer of new music, having worked with Elliott Carter, Pierre Boulez, Henri Dutilleux, Charles Wuorinen, George Crumb, George Perle, and Fred Lerdahl. He is a member of the Knights, the Talea Ensemble, Quattro Mani, and the Da Capo Chamber Players. His discography includes George Walker’s piano sonatas, for Bridge Records, and Elliott Carter’s “Double Concerto” on Albany Records. He is a Steinway Artist, and is on the faculty of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Amy I-lin Cheng

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Born in Taiwan, pianist Amy I-Lin Cheng has appeared on concert stage in the United States, Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, Taiwan, Brazil, Canada, France, and Israel. She has been described by the New York Concert Review as a pianist whose “control of the keyboard is complete, technique easy and relaxed, with a wide range of touch.” Late pianist Claude Frank describes her as “a brilliant, sensitive, imaginative and most beguiling pianist.” Cheng’s live performances have been heard on WGBH, KCSC, WHYY, La Radio Suisse Romande-Espace 2, and NPR. She has presented recitals at venues such as the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Merkin Concert Hall in New York City, Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall, and National Concert Hall in Taipei, as well as on concert series across the United States. Cheng made her Boston concerto debut at the age of 17 at Jordan Hall under the direction of Benjamin Zhander. Since then, she has appeared as a concerto soloist with the ‘Musica Viva’ Moscow Chamber Orchestra, Taichung Philharmonic, Orchestra of the Pines in Texas, University Symphony Orchestra (University of Michigan), and the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, among others. During 2015-16 season, she gave the North American premiere of the Kapralova Piano Concerto at the Hill Auditorium in Ann Arbor as part of the week long Kapralova Festival, hosted by the University of Michigan’s School of Music, Theatre & Dance.

A dedicated chamber musician, Cheng enjoys collaborating with others since a very young age. Currently, she is the co-artistic director of the Brightmusic Society of Oklahoma in Oklahoma City, a non-profit organization presenting chamber music concerts since 2003. In addition to regular season concerts, Brightmusic launched its first Spring Chamber Music Festival in 2012, and in June 2017, Brightmusic will present its 6th Chamber Music Festival with the music of Bach and Brahms. Formed in 1999, Duo Clarion (with clarinetist Chad Burrow) has performed in venues such as Zankel Hall in Carnegie Hall and National Concerto Hall in Taipei, as well as venues across the U.S. and Asia. Duo Clarion has released recording through CDBaby, Albany and WeiStudio. Duo Clarion’s most recent release of music by Brahms and Schumann received outstanding review in the ICA publication. Violinist Sean Yung-Hsiang Wang joined the duo to form Trio Solari in 2006. Trio Solari released its debut CD through Centaur Record in 2016. Cheng has performed as a guest pianist with the American Chamber Players and America’s Dream Chamber Artists, and performs frequently on the Michigan Chamber Players Series (U-M). As a chamber musician, Cheng has been part of many commissioning initiatives and has recorded chamber music works by composers such as Edward Knight, Laura Schwendinger, Stephen Rush and, Adolphus Hailstork on Centaur, Albany, and the Block M Record.

A highly sought after collaborator, Cheng has performed with artists such as Wenzel Fuchs, Sophie Shao, David Buck, David Shifrin, and Misha Quint, and has been pianist in residence for International Double Reed Society Convention in 2010 and 2011, as well as International Woodwind Festival in 2012, 2001, and 2002. Other festival chamber music appearances include the Interharmony International Music Festival in Germany, Quartz Mountain Music Festival, Taos School of Music, LaJolla SummerFest, OKMozart International Music Festival, Sewanee Summer Music Festival, Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, and Jerusalem Chamber Music Encounter.

A graduate of The Curtis Institute of Music (BM), Yale University School of Music (MM and Artist Diploma), and the New England Conservatory (DMA), Cheng holds degrees in piano performance. Her principal teachers were Claude Frank, Wha-Kyung Byun, Rolf-Peter Wille, and Yi-Hsien Chang. She studied chamber music with Robert McDonald (Taos), Peter Frankl, Michael Friedmann and Boris Berman. Committed to music education of the younger generation, Cheng devotes her time to instructing young pianists. She has worked with young pianists and young chamber music groups in summer festivals, at the Franklin School for the Performing Arts Massachusetts, and at the Community Music School of Ann Arbor. In addition, she maintains a studio of private students, age 6-15. Prior to moving to Ann Arbor, Cheng was the head of the piano area at Oklahoma City University Wanda L. Bass School (06-09), and the assistant professor of piano at the Oklahoma State University (02-06). After serving as a collaborative pianist for the School of Music, Theatre & Dance at the University of Michigan, Cheng joined the Department of Piano faculty in 2012 as a lecturer in Piano, where she teaches piano and chamber music. In the summer, Cheng teaches at Sewanee Summer Music Festival. She lives in Ann Arbor with husband Chad Burrow, two children, and two family dogs.

COMPOSITION

Jorge Variego
Program Director

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Jorge Variego was born in Rosario, Argentina. He is a former Fulbright Scholar and is currently on the Music Theory/Composition faculty at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and the Sewanee Summer Music Festival.

Actively involved with technology in sound and music, Jorge has been a pioneer in the field of interactive computer music, having created and performed a great deal of works for clarinet and electronics in the US, Europe and South America. He participated in many international music festivals such as MATA, SEAMUS, EMS, Sonoimagenes, Holland Festival, Festival de Jazz de Vigo, Via Stellae, ICMC and Big Ears. His music can be heard in the Parma, Albany Records, CMMAS, Centaur and Naxos libraries. In 2017 he was named Mentor of the year in the College of Fine Arts and Sciences, Performing Arts division at the University of Tennessee. In 2018 his book on algorithmic composition was released by the National University of Quilmes, in Argentina ISBN-10: 9875585025. During that same year he received the support of the Swedish Arts Grants Committee to be resident composer at the Visby Centre for Composers and was guest lecturer at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, in Spain. His recent agenda involved works for the Indiana University guitar ensemble, the Orchester Liestal, the Cumberland Orchestra, the Knoxville Symphony, the Oak Ridge Symphony, the Roane Choir Society with premieres scheduled in the US and Europe. Among his research endeavors, his book “Composing with Constraints” was published by Oxford University Press in 2021.

Jorge is the founder director of the Domino Ensemble a non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion, commission and performance of new music with improvisation. The group released its first album “Purple Ego” (Centaur) in 2019 and the EP “Drunken Raccoon” in 2020. With the support of the Nora Roberts Foundation and the Tennessee Arts Commission, the group has lead a number of educational workshops and commissioned and premiered a number of works from young composers. In 2021, and with the support of a Catalyst Programming grant the Ensemble will present the “Knoxville Tango suite” at the University of Tennessee. He is also the founder director of the UT Electroacoustic Ensemble, a student group dedicated to free improvisation with electronic media and is member of the Society of Composers National Council.

For more information please visit: www.jorgevariego.com

Vincent Oppido
Film Score Composer

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A rising talent in Hollywood, Vincent Oppido’s music is “melodically classical yet unafraid to introduce new ideas” (Damon Lindelof). His music has been performed and recorded in Europe and Japan, and across the United States from Carnegie Hall to the Hollywood scoring stages of Warner Brothers and Sony Pictures Studios.

Oppido’s recent scoring credits include the indie films Alien Code (Archstone/Sony Home Pictures – starring Kyle Gallner and Richard Schiff), Watch the Sky (Breaking Glass Pictures – starring Renee O’Connor), and the upcoming CollegeHumor series Troopers: Rise of the Budget. He has also composed additional music for projects including Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, Jedi Temple Challenge, Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween and TruTV’s Adam Ruins Everything: Reanimated History. Other writing credits include original music for Sinclair Oil’s 2017 commercial advertisements and musical source arrangements for projects such as It Happened In LA (Sundance Selected) and the upcoming Paramount Pictures film What Men Want. Also an orchestrator and conductor, Oppido has worked on projects such as Fortnite, Cobra Kai, Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume 2, and NBC’s Timeless. His first job in Hollywood, as a music proofreader, enabled him to work on dozens of motion pictures and television shows including Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Frozen, Family Guy and The 2013 Oscars.

In addition to work in film and television, Oppido has received numerous commissions for the concert hall, garnering performances in such prestigious venues including The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Symphony Hall in Boston and Carnegie Hall. In December 2018 his work, Cosmic Escapades, was premiered by The United States Army Band at the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago. Past commissions include Fanfare to an American Heritage for the United States Army Bugle Corps, An American Expedition for the Montana All-State Orchestra, and New York, New York: Postards to Home for the Nassau Music Educators Association Division V All-County Band. Oppido also composed Patriot Pride, George Mason University’s alma mater and arranged an overture for Brian Stokes Mitchell’s concert show. His most recent commission for Alto Saxophone Solo and Wind Ensemble, Three Happenings While Walking Down Main Street, will receive its premiere by the United States Air Force Band in 2021. Upcoming commissions include a new work for the United States Air Force Band of the West, to premiere in 2021.

Originally from Long Island, New York, Vincent studied composition and conducting at George Mason University with Mark Camphouse and Anthony Maiello and was invited to attend the Scoring for Motion Picture and Television program at the University of Southern California. He was selected as a 2012 participant in the ASCAP Film Scoring Workshop with Richard Bellis and also spent a summer studying at the Aspen Music Festival. Oppido is represented by REJ Entertainment and is a member of ASCAP.

OPERA

Laura Brooks Rice smiles looking up at the camera
Laura Brooks Rice
Program Director

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Mezzo-soprano Laura Brooks Rice has won acclaim on the opera and concert stage for her rich, warm voice, musicality, charm and sensitive acting ability.

From 1985-2019 Miss Rice was on faculty at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey where she was Professor of Voice. In addition to teaching private voice, Miss Rice taught courses in opera: The Singing Actor: Opera and Opera Auditions: Techniques and Preparation. Along with her teaching at Westminster, Miss Rice has a private studio of professional singers and has been a vocal consultant to the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Program and is currently the voice teacher for the Cafritz Program with the Washington Opera. She has been an adjunct voice faculty member at The Curtis Institute of Music, In the summers of 2012-2019 she was on the faculty of the distinguished program IVAI in Montreal and Virginia and New York. She has taught at Santa Fe Opera and at the Bel Canto Institute in San Miguel, Mexico.

Her private students are currently singing as regular principal artists at The Metropolitan Opera, Washington Opera, Sarasota Opera, Opera Theater of St. Louis, Ft. Worth Opera, Dayton Opera, Minnesota Opera, Nashville Opera, Opera Company of Philadelphia, Mobile Opera, Maggio Musicale, Opera Omaha, Portland Opera, Knoxville Opera, San Diego Opera, Lake George Opera, Mozarteum in Salzburg, Opera North, Central City, Atlanta Opera and Aix en Provence and most of the world’s opera houses and orchestras.

Miss Rice has been on the steering committee for the Singer Training Council under the auspices of Opera America. She has been member of the board of advisors of the Sewanee Summer Music Festival, Astral Artistic Services as well as the Princeton Festival. She has served as a judge on the panels of the National NATSAA Competition, Astral Artistic Services Annual Auditions and the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.

From 2005-2020 she directed one of Westminster’s most innovative programs the CoOPERAtive Program, a three-week intensive opera training program. In August 2002 and 2005 she conducted master classes and taught private lessons for the Reykjavik Singing School in Reykjavik, Iceland. She is currently the director of the Sewanee Opera Intensive in Tennessee.

In a diverse repertoire, including Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, Mahler’s Songs of a Wayfarer, Elgar’s Sea Pictures, Brahm’s Alto Rhapsody and Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 Miss Rice has appeared from coast to coast in the United States in concerts and recitals. In recent seasons, she has appeared with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra on several occasions in works including Handel’s Messiah, which she has also performed with numerous other orchestras nationwide. Miss Rice has performed with the New Jersey Symphony, Bethlehem Bach Festival and Boulder Bach Festival. She made her Mostly Mozart Festival debut singing the role of Apollo in Mozart’s Apollo and Hyacinth, has been heard in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with San Francisco, Atlanta, San Diego and New Jersey Symphonies with conductors, Kurt Masur, Kurt Sanderling, Robert Shaw and Hugh Wolf.

In the 1992-93 season Miss Rice made her debut at the Metropolitan Opera as Wowkle in La Fanciulla del West. Following her debut in 1981 with the San Francisco Opera as Grimgerde in Die Walküre she has appeared with that company in several productions, performing such roles as Dorabella in Cosi fan tutte, Marcellina in Le Nozze di Figaro, Varvara in Katya Kabanova and Suzuki in Madame Butterfly. She has also performed with the Spoleto Festival (Italy) in Honneger’s King David.

A participant in the San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program, she sang numerous performances ad an Adler Fellow with the San Francisco
Opera Center.

Karma has bright red hair and smiles at the camera in front of a light gray wall.
Karma Camp
character / movement coach

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Karma Camp is an American director/choreographer who most recently staged the Kennedy Center Honors tribute to world renowned, Justino Diaz on CBS. In addition to opera, Ms. Camp has staged over 150 productions for theater, film, television and events. For eight years she has been on staff as a character/movement coach for the Washington Opera’s Cafritz Young Artist program. Together with Francesca Zambello she staged, The Consul for the Supreme Court Justices with the backing of the late, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Other opera credits for WNO include, The Magic Flute, Vanessa, the world premiere of Goya; Candide with Baltimore Symphony Orchestra conducted by Marin Alsop; as well as, Street Scene with the Wolf Trap – among others. She and the late composer/conductor, Marvin Hamlisch created works for the National Symphony Orchestra and Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center. Other TV credits include July 4th from the White House (Hallmark), In Performance at the White House (PBS), The National Christmas Tree Lighting at the White House (Hallmark), New Years Eve at Rockefeller Center (PBS), 25 commercials and the film, I Wanna Know with Reese Witherspoon and Owen Wilson. Stage credits include Broadway, Off Broadway and many regional theatres.

She has been on staff directing/coaching at Interlochen Arts Academy, George Mason University and American University. She is an Artistic Associate at the Tony Award winning Signature Theatre, an Affiliated Artist at the Shakespeare Theatre and is a multiple recipient and 13 time nominee of the prestigious Helen Hayes Award for theatrical excellence. She has been fortunate to create with the late Stephen Sondheim for the Sondheim Celebration at the Kennedy Center, John Kander on the original production on First You Dream (available on Amazon), Kander and Ebb on several occasions at Signature Theatre as well as the American Premiere of The Witches of Eastwick – Sir Cameron Mackintosh. Karma is known for her work on creating character using movement and the Leban Method.

Joshua Conyers
conductor / coach

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Baritone Joshua Conyers has been hailed by Opera News with “a deliciously honeyed baritone that would seduce anyone” and The New York Times as having “a sonorous baritone” that “wheedled and seduced.” Mr. Conyers, a native of Bronx, NY, is quickly being championed for his captivating performances as he continues to be recognized as one the promising young dramatic voices of today. Equally active in contemporary opera, Mr. Conyers performed the role of Uncle Wesley in Carlos Simon’s Night Trip for Washington National Opera’s American Opera Initiative and Ed in the world premiere of Everything for Dawn produced by Experiments in Opera with leading composers Kamala Sankaram and Aaron Siegel. Mr. Conyers covered the roles of Mr. Umeya in the American premiere of Huang Ruo’s Dr. Sun Yat-Sen in Mandarin Chinese, and Walt Whitman in the world premiere of Theodore Morrison’s Oscar, both with the Santa Fe Opera.

Mr. Conyers was an Atlanta Opera Studio Player at The Atlanta Opera for the 2020-2021 season. Joshua performed the roles of Jackie “Tiger” Brown in Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill’s The Threepenny Opera, Tonio in Ruggero Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci, and covered Kaiser Overall in Viktor Ullman’s Der Kaiser von Atlantis. Mr. Conyers was a member of the Cafritz Young Artists of Washington National Opera, a program of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts for the 2018/19 and 2019/20 seasons. Joshua performed the roles of First Priest in The Magic Flute, John Sorel in The Consul, covered the Reverend in Jeanine Tesori’s Blue, Jim and Jake (cover) in Porgy and Bess, Giorgio Germont in La traviata, British Major in Silent Night, Donkey in The Lion, the Unicorn, and Me, and Zaretsky in Eugene Onegin. As a Filene Artist at Wolf Trap Opera, he performed Porgy in Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess: A Concert of Songs, Ramiro in Maurice Ravel’s L’heure espagnole, Musiklehrer in Richard Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos, Monterone in Rigoletto, Count Capulet in Roméo et Juliette, and the Baritone Soloist in Bernstein’s Songfest which was recorded by Naxos Records. Mr. Conyers fulfilled his residency as a Benenson Young Artist at Palm Beach Opera performing Yamadori in Madama Butterfly, Marullo in Rigoletto, Sciarrone in Tosca, Captain in Candide, and covering the Conte Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro. In the summer of 2021, Joshua was a Fleming Artist at the Aspen Opera Theater and VocalARTS performing the role of Sprecher in W. A. Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte alongside world-renowned soprano Renée Fleming, under the baton of maestro Patrick Summers. For the 2021-2022 season, Mr. Conyers will make his house and role debut as Policeman 3/Congregant 3 in Tesori’s Blue with Seattle Opera, Reginald in Anthony Davis’ X: The Life and Times of Malcolm X with Michigan Opera Theatre, co-commissioned with Opera Omaha, Schaunard in Puccini’s La bohème with Annapolis Opera, and house debut at Opera Memphis performing the role of Tonio in Pagliacci.

As a concert artist, Mr. Conyers made his Carnegie Hall Debut in 2018 as the Baritone Soloist performing Mozart’s Regina Cœli, K. 276, Vaughn Williams’ Serenade to Music, Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy and Mark Hayes’ Te Deum under the baton of distinguished composer and arranger Mark Hayes with MidAmerica Productions. Also, Joshua made his debut at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in 2018 as the Baritone Soloist performing Maurice Duruflé Requiem with Manhattan Concert Productions under the baton of conductor Anton Armstrong. In 2019, Mr. Conyers was a Soloist with the National Symphony Orchestra performing with world-renowned Maestro Gianandrea Noseda and singer-songwriter Ben Folds. Also, he was a Guest Artist at Opera Wilmington/UNC Wilmington annual Opera Symposium, in celebration of Caterina Jarboro, in conjunction with Black History Month as a Recitalist and presenting a Masterclass. Mr. Conyers opened the 2017-18 season in a gala performance with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra. Additional concert and oratorio credits include Bach’s St. Matthew Passion, Handel’s Messiah, Brahms’ Deutsches Requiem, Gabriel Fauré Requiem in D minor, Vaughan Williams’ Dona nobis pacem, and Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana. In 2021, Mr. Conyers will perform Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Songs of Travel with the Brooklyn Art Song Society.

Megan Gale
collaborative pianist
Patrick Hansen smiles at the camera.
Patrick Hansen
conductor / director

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Patrick Hansen is the Artistic Director of Opera McGill, an associate professor of music at the Schulich School of Music, and on the board of directors for The Association for Opera in Canada.

Considered a leading progressive figure in opera, he is only one of a few opera producers equally established as a stage director, conductor, vocal coach, collaborative pianist, and artistic administrator having spent the last thirty-five years on the creative and producing teams of over 250 operas.

His productions have been seen all over North America and in Europe. Recently he directed and choreographed the Bulgarian premiere of Weill’s Street Scene. He has directed at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, Pittsburgh Opera, Eugene Opera, Charlottesville Opera, Fargo Opera, Opera5, Opera Memphis, Arizona State University, Janiec Opera Company, Opéra de Montreal’s Atelier Lyrique, Opera on the James, Ithaca College, and over 70 operas at Opera McGill over the last decade. As the former Music Director for the Opera Festival of New Jersey, he conducted Die Zauberflöte, Il prigioniero, Bluebeard’s Castle, and the world premiere of the revised version of Burning Bright. Other conducting credits include La Traviata, Carmen, Cenerentola, Il barbiere di Siviglia, The Tender Land, The Turn of the Screw, Albert Herring, Cosi fan tutte, L’elisir d’amore, Le Nozze di Figaro, Die Fledermaus, Hänsel und Gretel, and Alcina.

His bachelor’s and master’s degrees are in piano performance. After a two-year fellowship in opera coaching at The Juilliard Opera Center, he began his professional career as music staff at the Lyric Opera of Chicago where he was the rehearsal pianist for chorus master Donald Palumbo, preparing over a dozen operas including Wozzeck, Il trovatore, Le Cid, Susannah, La Traviata, Don Quichotte, and La bohème.

His libretto adaptation of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing has a 2022 premiere in Montreal with music by the English composer James Garner.

Kathleen Kelly smiles at the camera over her left shoulder.
Kathleen Kelly
conductor / director

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Kathleen Kelly enjoys a dynamic musical life as a pianist, opera coach, conductor, teacher, and writer. Her projects and repertoire are wide-ranging and diverse. From Mozart to commissioned works by her peers, she is both deeply experienced in the classical vocal canon and engaged in new creation. Her 2019- 20 season includes recital dates with mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton in Atlanta, San Francisco and London, conducting Opera Columbus’ opening night, the Ohio premiere of Juliana Hall’s BEYOND THE GUARDED GATE with soprano Jennifer Cresswell, and many new collaborations in Cincinnati, where she joined the opera faculty of the College-Conservatory of Music in 2018.

The first woman and first American named as Director of Musical Studies at the Vienna State Opera, Kathleen’s operatic experience is the backbone of her career. Trained at the San Francisco Opera, she joined the company’s music staff and moved from there to a long association with the Metropolitan Opera. She was head of music at Houston Grand Opera, and music director of the Berkshire Opera before moving to Vienna. Kathleen has conducted at the Glimmerglass Festival, Wolf Trap Opera, Arizona Opera, El Paso Opera, Opera Columbus, the Merola Program, and the Alexandria Symphony, and has been a visiting master coach for the prestigious young artist programs of Chicago Lyric Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Washington National Opera, and the Canadian Opera Company. Recently she joined the Cincinnati Opera to assist on the workshop of Matthew Aucoin’s Eurydice, slated for a 2019 premiere with the Los Angeles Opera. She joins the faculty of the Aspen Festival in summer 2019.

Kathleen’s recital career includes appearances at Weill Hall, Zankel Hall, the Kennedy Center, Vienna’s Musikverein, the Mahlersaal of the Vienna State Opera, the Neue Galerie, the Schwabacher Series in San Francisco, and the Tucson Desert Song Festival. Her recent collaboration with Jamie Barton has won wide acclaim, and her partners have included Christine Goerke, Michael Kelly, Troy Cook, Amber Wagner, Susan Graham, Albina Shagimuratova, Valentina Nafornita, Sorin Coliban, Joyce DiDonato, Ariana Strahl, Martha Guth, Karen Slack, and Jennifer Holloway. She has curated art song series for the Houston Grand Opera and the Vienna State Opera, and is currently involved in the creation of new song through Sparks and Wiry Cries’ songSLAM events.

In demand as a mentor of rising artists, Kathleen has given masterclasses and workshops across North America, among others at the University of Toronto, the Schulich School at McGill University, University of Cincinnati, Baylor University, Vanderbilt University, University of Texas at Austin, University of Michigan, the Peabody Conservatory, University of Washington, Westminster Choir College, and Interlochen. She has served on the juries of the Wirth Prize at McGill University, the Dallas Opera Guild competition, the Kristin Lewis Foundation Scholarship auditions, the Cooper-Bing competition, and the regional Metropolitan Opera National Council auditions.

A published poet and essayist, Kathleen has created several new opera translations and libretti. Her English adaptation of Hansel and Gretel, commissioned by Tri-Cities Opera, is now in use alongside her chamber orchestra arrangement of the work. For Arizona Opera, she created a multilingual version of Emmerich Kalman’s Arizona Lady, and she wrote the libretto for David Hanlon’s Wolf Trap premiere Listen, Wilhelmina! She is currently working on an English adaptation of The Bartered Bride, and has commissioned settings of three of her published poems from composers David Hanlon, Jamie Leidwinger, and Juliana Hall.

Elena Kholodova smiles at the camera
Elena Kholodova
conductor / coach

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Elena Kholodova is an internationally recognized collaborative pianist and vocal coach. Menton’s French magazine called her “the brilliant Russian pianist, who impressed the audience with the beauty of the sound and amazing technique”.

Elena received DMA in Solo Performance from Voronezh State Academy of Arts (Russia) and an Artist Diploma in Opera Coaching from the College-Conservatory of Music University of Cincinnati (USA). Elena Kholodova is a winner of prestigious competitions such as the V.Krainev Competition (Ukraine) and New Names Scholarship awards, Semi-Finalist of Prokofiev’s competition (St.Petersburg, Russia). Also, she earned the title “The Best Accompanist” from several international vocal competitions. She has appeared as a collaborative artist in a substantial number of festivals, competitions, master-classes, and recitals in Russia, France, Finland, Germany, Norway, Great Britain, and the USA.

She has been engaged with Festival of Music in Menton, Mikkeli Festival of Music, St.Petersburg Palaces’ Festival, Japan International Festival, White Night Festival, and opera productions at the Mariinskiy Theater, Cincinnati Opera, Atlanta Opera, Sarasota Opera, “Opera Fusion: New Works” Workshops, Concert: Nova Series, Not So Classical, Constella Festival and many others.

Dugg McDonough smiles at the camera.
Dugg McDonough
stage director / drama coach

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Dugg McDonough is the Mary Barrett Fruehan Associate Professor of Opera and the Artistic Director of LSU Opera, becoming the first recipient of the endowed professorship in the fall of 2006. Starting with Il barbiere di Siviglia in 2002, he has staged over 50 LSU productions, including 2007’s highly acclaimed performances of Carlisle Floyd’s Willie Stark, which were filmed for the composer’s first commercial DVD, released by Newport Classic in 2008. Another video highlight came with David Amram’s Twelfth Night in 2010, again recorded by Newport Classic, and included in a documentary celebrating the composer’s 80th birthday.

As a professional director, McDonough has staged a wide variety of operas, operettas, and musicals, from Monteverdi to Sondheim to Heggie, for companies ranging from the New York City Opera to the Taipei International Arts Festival. Highlights in recent years include the workshop premiere of Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s Out of Darkness for Pensacola Opera; Elektra, Susannah, Dialogues of the Carmelites, La rondine, and The Tragedy of Carmen for Des Moines Metro Opera; Madama Butterfly for Opèra Louisiane and Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra; Turandot for Jacksonville; Little Women, La cenerentola, La tragèdie de Carmen, and The Medium for Pensacola Opera; The Awakening (world premiere staging) for New Orleans Opera Association; and Tristan und Isolde in Sofia, Bulgaria (complete with commercial CD on Titanic Records and a video documentary). Most recently, in the summer of 2015, he staged two productions of Le nozze di Figaro for Operafestival di Roma and Land of Enchantment Opera in New Mexico, where he returns for Così fan tutte in 2016.

Among his additional credits, McDonough served for four seasons as Staff Stage Director for the New York City Opera, under the leadership of Beverly Sills, and he spent two summers on the production staff of The Santa Fe Opera (beginning his professional career as Assistant Director on the American premiere of the complete, three-act version of Berg’s Lulu). For two years, he served as Production Manager and Artistic Consultant for Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, collaborating with such notable stage directors as Colin Graham, Frank Corsaro, and Jonathan Miller. Also a librettist, McDonough authored Ordinary People, a three-act opera with music by Robert Chumbley (world premiere workshop staging at Maryland Opera Studio in 2008), and he has recently been offered commissions for two new one-act stage works.

As a specialist in working with emerging performers, McDonough served for 20 years (1993-2012) as Co-Director of the Apprentice Artist Program of Des Moines Metro Opera. He has also stage directed for The Santa Fe Opera’s Apprentice Program, the San Diego Opera Center, the Young Artist Program of Florida Grand (formerly Greater Miami) Opera, and the National Company and Education Department of New York City Opera. As an adjudicator of vocal competitions, he has acted as judge for the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, as well as the Charles A. Lynam Vocal Competition.

McDonough’s academic résumé includes, in addition to his years at LSU, a 1985-2002 tenure as Associate Professor and Director of Opera Theater at the Boyer College of Music of Temple University in Philadelphia. Other university teaching and directing credits include guest residencies at the University of Tennessee, University of Oklahoma, and the Shepherd School of Music of Rice University. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Duke University; a Master of Arts in Dramatic Art from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and did extensive post-graduate study in theater history, operatic and dramatic literature, and stage direction for opera at Indiana University.

Jordan Schreiner
conductor / coach

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With his “sincere” acting and a voice “filled with passion”, tenor Jordan Marshall Schreiner is quickly making a name for himself in the romantic repertoire.

Mr. Schreiner is most notably known for his portrayals of the romantic tenor roles, making recent debuts as the tumultuous Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, under the baton of Maestro Andrew Altenbach, and as the impassioned Rodolfo in La bohème, in a production with director JJ Hudson. Most recently, Mr. Schreiner portrayed the title role in a new and unconventional production of Offenbach’s Les contes d’Hoffmann directed by John Giampietro and conducted by Maestro Mark Shapiro. Mr. Schreiner has also made his mark in the Verdian repertoire, covering Alfredo in Verdi’s La Traviata under Maestro Thomas Bagwell.

During his residency with Tri-Cities Opera, Mr. Schreiner played a number of characters ranging from the Tenor in Alison Mortiz’s production of Glass’ Hydrogen Jukebox to the Gingerbread Witch in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel, under the baton of Maestro Vlad Iftinca, to the poet and lover, Gonzalve in Ravel’s L’heure espagnole, and finally as Gastone in Verdi’s La Traviata. Mr. Schreiner has also been seen in portrayals of Vaudémont in Tchakovsky’s Iolanta, Tamino in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Martin in Copland’s The Tender Land, and Frederic in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance.

Equally at home on the concert stage, Mr. Schreiner has performed a number of concert works around the United States. Recent performances include multiple performances of Handel’s Messiah, as well as performances of Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass with the Catskill Choral Society and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Orchestra of the Finger Lakes. Mr. Schreiner is poised to make his Alice Tully Hall debut as the tenor soloist in Haydn’s Schöpfungsmesse with Maestro Patrick Gardner in the coming season after an unfortunate cancellation due to COVID-19.

Mr. Schreiner has received a number of awards from academic institutions, most recently receiving a fellowship from the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University as well as a fellowship from Binghamton University. Other awards include first place in the 2018 Opera Ithaca Competition and the top honor from Westminster College’s CoOPERAtive program.

An avid teacher, Mr. Schreiner is the founder of Schreiner Voice Studio, a studio based in upstate NY that is quickly pushing the traditional boundaries of vocal pedagogy. The Schreiner Voice Studio explores the ideals of the “wholistic musician” by teaching not only vocal technique, but by emphasizing the physical and mental well-being just as equally. Mr. Schreiner’s students have been linked to companies such as Seagle Music Colony, Teatro Nuovo, Nashville Opera, and Ohio Light Opera. Mr. Schreiner also recently completed a year as an adjunct voice professor at Mansfield University.

Mr. Schreiner graduated from Binghamton University in Binghamton, NY with a degree in Opera Performance. While in Binghamton, Mr. Schreiner participated in a number of operas, concerts and events with the regional opera house, Tri-Cities Opera. In 2014, Mr. Schreiner graduated from Mansfield University of Pennsylvania in Mansfield, PA with degrees in both Music Performance and Music Business: Management.

Jennifer Szeto
collaborative pianist

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“Jennifer Szeto […] continued to show why she is one of the most promising young collaborative pianists in Canada” (Scena Musicale).

Praised for her “immense sweetness and precision that seemed to be flawless” (L’Opéra revue québécoise), “rock-solid rhythm… a great variety of color” (Bachtrack) and “amazing versatility” (Opera Ramblings), Montreal-based pianist Jennifer Szeto is carving out a dynamic path as a performer, coach, educator, and arts administrator.

Jennifer is a graduate of San Francisco Opera’s Adler Fellowship, the Merola Opera Program, Canadian Opera Company’s Ensemble Studio, and Atelier Lyrique at Opéra de Montréal. Recent roles include music director in the world premiere of Laurence Jobidon and Pascale St-Onge’s L’hiver attend beaucoup de moi at Opéra de Montréal in a collaboration with Théâtre Espace GO with direction by Solène Paré, head coach in George Benjamin’s Written on Skin at Opéra de Montréal with conductor Nicole Paiement (Canadian premiere production), and assistant conductor for John Estacio’s Ours with Opera on the Avalon with conductor Judith Yan. Elsewhere, she is a staff coach at Opera McGill, University of Ottawa, and Highlands Opera Studio in Haliburton, ON.

In her role as a co-founder of Musique 3 Femmes, she facilitates the Mécénat Musica Prix 3 Femmes – a $50,000 biennial prize that supports the creation of operas by emerging female composers and librettists through seed funding for new operas, mentorship, and workshops. The award – now in its second edition – fosters the next generation of Canadian female opera creators and has enabled the creation of 8 new Canadian operas written by women composers and librettists.

Jennifer holds a M.Mus. in Piano Accompaniment from McGill University, a B.Mus Performance from University of Toronto, and has received additional training from SongFest and the Franz Schubert Institut in Baden-bei-Wien, Austria.

STRING ACADEMY

Veronica Jackson
Program Director

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After graduating from W. G. Enloe High School (Raleigh, North Carolina) in 1985, Ms. Jackson studied violin at the University of Miami (Coral Gables) with Dr. Marla Meutschler (Paul Rolland protégé) and Dr. Earl Sanders at North Carolina Central University (NCCU). After graduating summa cum laude from NCCU, she began teaching orchestra in Wake County Schools elementary, middle, and high schools in Raleigh, North Carolina. Ms. Jackson moved to Richmond in 1994 and began teaching in Henrico County, where she worked for 17 years at several schools including Byrd Middle School, Godwin High School, Freeman High School, and Tucker High School. In Henrico County, she coordinated the Strings Discovery Program designed to introduce stringed instruments to rising 6th graders. Ms. Jackson’s orchestras are known for outstanding performances throughout the district. While teaching in Henrico County, her high school orchestras performed at the Virginia Music Educators’ State Convention in Norfolk, VA. Her orchestras have also received superior ratings in national competitions in Chicago, New York, Toronto, and Boston. Locally, Ms. Jackson’s middle and high school orchestras consistently receive superior and excellent ratings in District Orchestra Assessments. Ms. Jackson’s students have received numerous individual awards and recognition for their performances. Ms. Jackson was a 2010 finalist for the R. E. B. Award for Teaching Excellence.

In August 2012, Ms. Jackson accepted the position of Orchestra Director at Francis Hammond Middle School in Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS). She continues to serve with her energetic style of teaching. The strings program at Hammond has more than doubled since she has been there. Hammond Middle School orchestra students have received superior and excellent ratings at District Orchestra Assessments. March 2015, Hammond MS was the only school in the area to have four ensembles in the District X Orchestra Assessment – three received straight superior ratings and the fourth ensemble received an excellent rating. March 2016, Hammond MS once again had four ensembles adjudicated – a 6th grade orchestra, a 7th grade orchestra, and 8th grade orchestra, and a full orchestra! This was the first time that a middle school full orchestra performed for District X Middle School assessment. All groups received superior and excellent ratings. Coordinated by Ms. Jackson, the innovative and collaborative programming in the ACPS Strings Program has made a direct impact on the number of students participating in ACPS orchestra programs. Some of these programs include 7th and 8th Grade Honors Orchestra Event, 5th Grade Fiddle Fest, Electrify Your Strings featuring Mark Wood, ACPS Summer Band and Orchestra Camp, and LOWER STRINGS BOOST! also known as VIOLA, CELLO, BASS DAY. Ms. Jackson initiated the ACPS Summer Music Camp which began with 30 students in 2013 to as many as 325 students. Ms. Jackson is proud to have been named Teacher of The Year 2017 for Francis C. Hammond Middle School.​

In June of 2020, Ms. Jackson accepted the position of Orchestra Director at T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria City Public Schools. The best is yet to come.

Ms. Jackson also participated in several conducting workshops with Dr. William Jones of Iowa State University, Dr. Anthony Maiello of George Mason University, and the late Dr. Marvin Rabin. She is highly sought after to serve as guest conductor and clinician. She has participated as conductor for the Virginia’s Central Regional Orchestra Event, North Central Regional Orchestra Event, Southeastern Regional Orchestra Event, District XII Regional Orchestra Event, JMU’s Spring String Thing, and many All County Events. She served as the orchestra director for the Sinfonia Orchestra at Shenandoah Performing Arts Camp at Shenandoah University in Winchester, VA. Ms. Jackson served as guest clinician and conductor for the Pitt County All County Fifth Grade Orchestra and Nash Rocky Mounty Public Schools in North Carolina for five years straight. Ms. Jackson also served as conductor for Richmond Symphony’s Youth Concert Orchestra, an intermediate full orchestra. In addition to her commitment to her students, Ms. Jackson served as director of the Rappahannock Youth Symphony Orchestra in Fredericksburg, Virginia where she served for five years. For three years, she served as director of the McLean Youth Orchestra Repertory Ensemble.

In 2016, she was appointed director of Arlington Concert Orchestra, an orchestra for adults who have returned to playing their instruments. It is a program that is part of Arlington County Public Schools adult education program called Arlington Community Learning – www.acochestra.com. Ms. Jackson also served as Music Director for DC Strings Workshop, a non-profit full orchestra, whose mission is to bring classical music to all four quadrants of Washington, D.C. – especially the underserved communities. She also served as music directed for the McLean Repertory Orchestra for three years. As an active musician, Ms. Jackson enjoys performing in several ensembles including Prince George’s Philharmonic Orchestra, Capital City Symphony, Takoma String Ensemble, and Colour of Music Festival (Charleston, SC). Other affiliations include membership and past president of the Virginia Chapter of the American String Teachers’ Association, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., and Music Educators’ National Conference.

Mari-Liis Calloway

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Estonian violinist Mari-Liis Calloway has appeared around the world as soloist and chamber musician. A laureate of international competitions including Heifetz (Vilnius), Wieniawski (Lublin, Poland), and Dombrowski (Riga), she has been heard in concert throughout western Europe and the Baltic countries as well as across the U.S. Mrs. Calloway has performed as soloist with orchestras in Estonia as well as with the Meadows Symphony in Dallas and, as winner of the European String Teachers Association competition, gave a solo recital at the Conservatoire National Superieur de Musique in Paris. She has appeared frequently in the Netherlands as a two-time recipient of a grant to the International Holland Music Sessions and has appeared at festivals including the Salzburg Mozarteum, Eilat, and Burg Feistritz. She performs at the Pärnu Music Festival in Estonia in collaboration with Paavo Järvi in which capacity she has appeared as soloist with Ivry Gitlis and premiered a work of Helena Tulve with bassoonist Martin Kuuskmann. Mrs. Calloway has collaborated in chamber music with Charles Abramovic, Luis Biava, Andres Diaz, David Ehrlich, Christopher Rex, and Nathaniel Rosen as well as alongside the Amernet String Quartet. She was a soloist with FIU’s NODUS Ensemble at Cervantino Festival in Guanajuato, Mexico and has given recitals at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Mrs. Calloway is as well a committed teacher of violin and viola, having given masterclasses at numerous institutions. She maintained an active studio at the Leopold Mozart Academy outside Philadelphia and at Temple University’s Music Preparatory division. She was the orchestra director at Miami Arts Charter School – Homestead. Currently Mrs. Calloway is the director of orchestras at Gulliver Academy in Miami. She is a native of Tartu, Estonia.

MINDFULNESS & WELLBEING

Eva Cappelletti Chao
Life Coach

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Musical Biography:

Violinist Eva Cappelletti Chao has enjoyed a diverse and engaging orchestral career for over three decades. She currently performs with the Baltimore Symphony, the orchestras at the Kennedy Center, and leads many chamber and choral ensembles in the Washington, DC area. During summer seasons, she is a member of the Grand Teton Music Festival Orchestra in Jackson, Wyoming, and she is both Violin Faculty and the Performing Artists’ Life Coach in Residence at the Sewanee Summer Music Festival in Tennessee.

Certified Life Coach Biography:

Graduating Summa Cum Laude with a double degree in Psychology and Music, Eva Cappelletti Chao has studied the mind, neuroscience, and human potential for over 30 years. Alongside her meditation practice, Eva has studied Transpersonal Psychology at Naropa University, ‘The Work’ of Byron Katie through BK International, and ‘Inquiry-Based Coaching’ via Innerland Institute. Ms. Cappelletti Chao is an MBI Certified Life Coach and has worked with hundreds of classical musicians through individual coaching sessions and leading group coaching seminars and workshops.

You can find more about Eva @ theMusicofYou.com.

Robie Jackson
Yoga Instructor