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.
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

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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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
His website is
Andrii Isakov
violin, weeks 3-4

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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. 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, 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 Isakov’s career. Isakov has worked as a graduate teaching assistant of the world-renown violin pedagogue, Kurt Sassmannshaus, at the University of Cincinnati CCM for two years. Currently, he is a member of the violin faculty at CCM Prep: Starling Preparatory String Project. Starting from August 2024,
Isakov will join a faculty at The Ohio State University as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Violin. Additionally, Isakov serves as a member of the violin faculty at Cremona International Music Academy and Festival, and at Sewanee Summer Music Festival. Isakov is a founder, artistic director, and a violin faculty of the Fiorito International Music Festival and Competition.

Isakov’s students are recognized winners of international competitions, such as XII International Balys Dvarionas Competition, 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. Isakov has given masterclasses in the United States, in China, and in Europe.

Isakov holds his Doctor of Music Arts and master’s 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

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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, weeks 1-2

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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

Jane Stewart
violin, weeks 1-2

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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, weeks 3-4

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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

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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

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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

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

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

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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 (, 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

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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
double bass

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Tim Pearson performs regularly with the Nashville Symphony, IRIS Orchestra and the Gateway Chamber Orchestra. With Gateway he can be heard on the Summit record label playing music of Strauss, Mozart, Schrecker, Schoenberg and Enescu. As a soloist, he premiered Nashville composer Christopher Farrell’s “Sonata for Double Bass and Piano” and in 2013, Spanish composer Jesus Santandreu’s “Iberian Concerto for Double Bass and Wind Ensemble.” Additionally, he can often be found playing in the Nashville Parthenon at the feet of Athena for the Nashville-based contemporary music ensemble Intersection. Mr. Pearson maintains a private studio, serves on the faculty of the Sewanee Summer Music Festival and has held positions at The University of Evansville, Belmont University and Middle Tennessee State University. He holds degrees from the University of Memphis and Indiana University and did additional studies with Paul Ellison and Bruce Bransby.
Sam Suggs
double bass

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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
String Student Chamber 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.


Donna Shin

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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

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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.

Cecilia Kang is a Korean woman in a black dress with her hair in a bun holding her clarinet and smiling at the camera in front of a black backdrop.
Cecilia Kang
clarinet, weeks 3-4

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Praised for “ethereal [tonal] colors” and “effortless” clarinet playing (The Clarinet Journal), Korean-Canadian clarinetist Cecilia Kang enjoys an innovative and multi-faceted international career as a concert clarinetist, educator, scholar, adjudicator and a collaborator. In addition to winning top prize from the Canadian Music Competition, the Montreal Symphony Orchestra Standard Life Competition, and the International Clarinet Association Research Competition, she has also received numerous grants from the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in Washington DC, the New Music USA, the Canada Council for the Arts, the Metropolitan Arts Council, the Alliance for Canadian New Music Projects, the Kingsway Foundation, and the Hendrickson Foundation.

Since her concerto debut at age sixteen, she has frequently appeared as a soloist with symphony orchestras and bands in Asia and North America. An in-demand chamber musician, she has collaborated with the St. Lawrence String Quartet, and members of the Berlin Philharmonic, the Royal Danish Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. As an orchestral player, she has performed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra and the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra (Canada).

As a highly sought educator, Dr. Kang has presented at the Midwest Clinic International Band, Orchestra & Music Conference, the College Music Society Conference, the International Clarinet Association’s ClarinetFest, and the Music Educators Association conferences in Texas, Louisiana, South Carolina, South Dakota, Minnesota, and North Dakota. She has also given many clarinet master classes and workshops at prestigious musical institutions around the world such as the San Francisco Conservatory, the University of Michigan, the University of Toronto (Canada), Beijing Central Conservatory of Music (China), the National Taiwan University of Arts (Taiwan), Yonsei University (South Korea), Thailand International Clarinet Academy (Thailand), and Milan Conservatory (Italy). Dr. Kang currently serves as the associate professor of clarinet at Louisiana State University and an artist faculty at Aria International Summer Academy and Sewanee Music Festival during the summers.

Throughout her career, she has been invited to serve as an adjudicator on behalf of the National Endowment for the Arts, the International Clarinet Association, the Music Teachers National Association, the College Music Society, the Vandoren Emerging Artist Competition, the Interflow Band Festival of Hong Kong, and the Witold Friemann International Clarinet Competition.  Her scholarly works have been published by the Cambridge University Press, the GIA Publications, and the International Clarinet Association’s Clarinet Journal.

Dr. Kang is committed to seeking creative and purposeful ways to balance her career and community building as a 21st-century global citizen. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she established the Silver Linings Initiative, for which she organized 25 virtual panel discussions among clarinetists, music educators, and arts leaders around the world examining the paradigm shifts in the field of Music. In January 2023, Dr. Kang curated the groundbreaking Han and Heung Festival, celebrating stories of resilience and optimism shared by both the Korean and African-American diasporas through interweaving an unforgettable fusion of music and social dialogue.

Dr. Kang earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Michigan, a Master of Music degree from the University of Southern California, and a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Toronto. She has participated in professional development residencies at the Banff Centre for the Arts (Canada), the International Ensemble and Composers Academy for Contemporary Music (Austria), and the International Music Institute Darmstadt (Germany). Her clarinet mentors include Yehuda Gilad, Daniel Gilbert, Joseph Orlowski, Joaquin Valdepenas, Avrahm Galper, and Zeng-Ming Liao.  She is a proud Vandoren and Buffet Crampon Performing Artist and Clinician.


강주희 (세실리아 강)은 클라리넷 연주자, 교육자와 콩쿨심사위원으로 다양한 활동을 이어가고 있다. 현재 미국 루이지애나 주립대학교의 부교수로 재직하며 여름에는 스와니 뮤직 페스티벌과 아리아 국제 음악 아카데미의 교수진으로 활동 중이다. 예후다 길라드, 다니엘 길버트, 조셉 올로우스키, 와킨 발데페나스, 아브람 갤퍼를 사사한 세실리아 강은 토론토대학에서 음악학사, 남캘리포니아 대학에서 음악석사, 미시간 대학에서 음악박사 학위를 취득하였다.  캐나다 국립 음악 콩쿠르, 몬트리올 심포니 경연대회 등에서 수상을 하였고, 캐나다 예술위원회, 캐나다 뉴뮤직 프로젝트 재단, 킹스웨이 재단, 뉴 뮤직 USA, 헨드릭슨 재단, 메트로폴리탄 예술위원회, 주미 한국대사관 등으로부터도 수상하였다.

로린 마젤 지휘자로 부터 캐슬리튼 페스티벌 오케스트라의 클라리넷 수석을 역임하며 캐나다 토론토 콘서트 오케스트라, 위니펙 심포니, 미국 찰스턴 심포니, 볼티모어 심포니, 루이지애나 필하모닉 등 객원 단원으로 활동을 하고있다. 베를린 필하모니, 덴마크 왕립 오케스트라, 로스엔젤레스 필하모니, 토론토 심포니 오케스트라 단원들과 세인트 로렌스 현악 사중주 와 많은 챔버 연주를 하였으며, 북미 와 아시아 에있는 여러 관악단과 오케스트라와 협연을 하고있다. 최근 2022 대전국제음악제 폐막식에서 지휘자 금난세와 신세계 필하모닉 오케스트라의 게스트 솔리스트로 스티브 코헨 (노스웨스턴대학교 클라리넷 명예교수) 와 같이 협연을 하고 2023 제주국제음악제에서 획기적인 연주를 선보였다.

이탈리아 밀라노 콘서바토리,  캐나다 토론토 대학, 미국 샌프란시스코 콘서바토리, 인디애나대학교, 피바디 콘서바토리, 미시간 대학교, 한국에서는 전주대학교, 신라대학교, 연세대학교, 경희대학교, 충남대학교, 중국 베이징 중앙 콘서바토리, 상하이 콘서바토리, 호주 멜버른대학교, 홍콩 사이완호 시민회관, 국립대만 예술 대학교, 태국 국제 클라리넷 아카데미에서 강의와 마스터 클래스를 진행했고, 국제 클라리넷 협회에서 개최한 클라리넷 페스트 (ClarinetFest), 칼리지 뮤직 협회(College Music Society), 국제 밴드 오케스트라 음악 미드웨스트 클리닉(Midwest Clinic), 미국 음악 교육자 협회 에서 강의와 연주로 많은 인정을 받고 있다.  2023년 국제 클라리넷 협회 연구 대회에서 1등을 수상했다.

최근 루이지애나 주립 대학교에서 한국인과 아프리카계 미국인 디아스포라가 공유하는 획기적인 음악과 사회적 Han (한/恨) and Heung (흥/興) Festival을 큐레이팅했다. 2020-2021년에 Silver Linings Initiative 을 설립하여 국제적인 클라리넷 연주자, 음악 교육가, 예술 리더들과 코로나 19에서 새로운 음악적 페라다임을 토론하는 행사를 온라인로 주관하였다. 현재 반도렌과 뷔페 크램폰 소속 아티스트로 활발한 활동을 하고 있다.

Mingzhe Wang
clarinet, weeks 1-2

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Clarinetist Mingzhe Wang is committed to promote both the music of our time and the classics. He gave the Chinese premiere of Elliott Carter’s Hiyoku and has worked closely with some of the world’s leading composers. He performed the Copland Clarinet Concerto in its original version with the Gateway Chamber Orchestra to great acclaim. In addition, he has performed on period clarinets with prominent groups such as The American Classical Orchestra and the Clarion Music Society Orchestra. As a chamber musician, Mr. Wang has collaborated and continues to work with some of the most prominent young artists today, appearing in concerts and music festivals in East Asia, Europe and North America. His performances have been broadcast on China’s Central Television, New York’s WQXR, Nashville’s WPLN, and many public radio stations across North America.

Mr. Wang, native of Wuhan, China, first studied clarinet at the age of 9. His first public performance was at the age of 10. He received the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Yale University, where he also obtained his Masters degree and Artist Diploma. His major teachers include David Shifrin, Charles Neidich, Ayako Oshima, and Paul Green. Mr. Wang is a co-founder of Trio Séléné and currently serves as an Associate Professor of Clarinet and Chair of the Woodwind Area at Michigan State University College of Music.

Amy Pollard

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Amy Pollard is the Professor of Bassoon and Associate Director for Performance at the Hugh Hodgson School of Music at the University of Georgia. She formerly served as Lecturer of Bassoon at Baylor University and has also been on faculty at the University of Dayton and the Cincinnati School for the Creative and Performing Arts. During the summer she has been on the faculty of the Interlochen Arts Center Advanced Bassoon Institute, the UGA Study Abroad program in Alessandria, Italy, the Saarburg Music Festival in Saarburg, Germany, and the Atlanta Chamber Music Festival. She has taught master classes at conservatories and universities throughout the United States and internationally as well as serving as a guest artist for numerous double reed festivals and clinics.

Pollard holds positions as principal bassoon with the Atlanta Ballet Orchestra and second bassoon with the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra. She is an active freelance performer and frequently performs with orchestras throughout the Southeast and beyond. Pollard also serves on the administrative board for the Meg Quigley Vivaldi Competition and Symposium as part of the Competition Committee.

Pollard has presented solo recitals at venues across the country and internationally and has performed as a soloist with the University of Georgia Symphony Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, and Wind Symphony as well as with the University of Cincinnati College- Conservatory of Music Chamber Players. An avid chamber musician, she has performed at venues throughout the country and also in Ireland, Belgium, Argentina, Italy, and Germany, and Thailand with such groups as the Georgia Woodwind Quintet, the Baylor University Woodwind Quintet, the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra Woodwind Quintet, and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Chamber Players. Her bassoon-percussion duo, Col Legno and her bassoon duo, Dueaux, have performed recitals and presented master classes at numerous venues throughout the country.

Pollard’s debut solo album, Ruminations: Bassoon Works of Eugène Bozza, and the Georgia Woodwind Quintet’s CD Chroma were both released by Mark Records and are available on iTunes.

Pollard received her Doctor of Musical Arts and Master of Music degrees from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and a Bachelor of Music degree from Louisiana State University, studying with William Winstead and William Ludwig.

Maya Stone headshot
Maya Stone

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Maya Stone is a faith-filled, Black female classical musician, creator, performer, educator and health coach. Her creative output is filtered through that personal and professional lens. Maya Stone is frequently engaged as a freelance musician around the country.  She enjoys performing in many capacities. She is a member of alternative classical ensemble, chatterbird, a founding member of the Negus Bassoon Ensemble, and engages with organizations such as Bang On A Can and Alarm Will Sound. A notable collaborative project includes the work Peace Like A River (2021), with Poet and Spoken Word Artist, Stephanie Pruitt.

Maya is excited to be Acting Second Bassoon with the Jacksonville Symphony in Florida for the 2023-2024 season, while teaching Adjunct Bassoon at the University of North Florida. She is the tenured 2nd Bassoon of the Huntsville Symphony in Alabama, and a member of the Sphinx Orchestra.

Dr. Stone is a public speaker and educator. Her voice projects from a personal connection of mental, spiritual and physical healing and health. These three focal points are all connected, and benefit from alignment. Her discourse is filled with experience, persistence, hopefulness and a desire for growth. Through her development over the years, Maya has cultivated a flexible perspective. This perspective continues to challenge and be challenged by the world we live in. She loves walking other people’s dogs and dancing out loud. You can find out more about Maya by visiting her social media, Maya Stone Music Studio.

Jessica Smithorn
Woodwind Student Chamber Coordinator

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Jessica Smithorn is the second oboist of the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra, principal oboist of the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera, a member of the Chattanooga Symphony Orchestra Wind Quintet, as well as principal oboist of the Shippensburg Festival Orchestra. She previously was the English hornist with the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra and was an associate musician with the Columbus Symphony Orchestra.

Equally comfortable in leadership and section roles, Jessica has regularly appeared with orchestras such as the Buffalo Philharmonic (including a NAXOS recording project), Omaha Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, Louisville Orchestra, and Cincinnati Ballet. She was also the oboist on a tour of Mexico with the Eastman Broadband Ensemble, a new music group dedicated to performing the music of Latinx composers.

Jessica studied at the Eastman School of Music with Richard Killmer; the College-Conservatory of Music with Mark Ostoich, Dwight Parry, and Chris Philpotts; and the University of Missouri-Kansas City with Barbara Bishop. When she’s not making reeds or practicing, Jessica enjoys baking, playing with her cats, and taking nature walks.


Peter Bond

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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

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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

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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. Mr. Allison holds contracts as the Principal Horn of Pittsburgh’s historic River City Brass, as well as Acting Principal Horn of the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra in nearby Wheeling, WV. In addition, Mr. Allison frequently plays as a substitute or extra horn with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, the Pittsburgh Opera and Ballet Orchestras, as well as the Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera Orchestra. He is also an active performer throughout Ohio as well as other parts of West Virginia and Pennsylvania, where he has performed with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra, the Allentown Symphony Orchestra, the 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, and Seton Hill University. In the summer, Mr. Allison is part of the horn faculty at the Sewanee Summer Music Festival located on the beautiful campus of the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee.

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

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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.

Joshua Bynum
trombone, sabbatical 2024

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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.

Brittany Lasch
trombone, weeks 3-4

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An S&R Foundation Washington Award winner, trombonist Brittany Lasch has appeared as a soloist with ensembles such as the U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own,” the Rodney Marsalis Philadelphia Big Brass, and with symphonies around the country. With playing described as “masterful” (Syracuse Post-Standard), American Record Guide recently hailed her as an “excellent soloist.” Brittany serves as Assistant Professor of Trombone at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University and has previously taught on the faculty at Bowling Green State University in Ohio. She also performs as Principal Trombone of the Detroit Opera Orchestra.

Brittany has been a featured guest artist at numerous events, including the International Trombone Festival, the International Women’s Brass Conference, and the American Trombone Workshop. She was a winner of Astral Artists National Auditions, the recipient of the Zulalian Foundation Award, and a prize winner in multiple national and international competitions. In 2018, Brittany was awarded 2nd place in The American Prize Solo Instrumentalist Competition.

Brittany has performed with orchestras nationwide, such as the St. Louis Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Nashville Symphony, The Florida Orchestra, and Toledo Symphony Orchestra. She has also performed at multiple festivals, including the Verbier Festival and Spoleto USA.

As an advocate for new music, Brittany has commissioned and premiered several new pieces for the trombone by composers such as Inez McComas, Reena Esmail, Thomas Weaver, and Adam Har-zvi. She recorded the orchestrated version of Martin Kennedy’s Theme and Variations for Trombone and Orchestra, which was released on the Albany Records label to acclaim. Brittany, along with frequent collaborator and Curtis faculty member Thomas Weaver, recently finished recording a new solo album titled Dark Horse featuring works by Samuel Adler, Tony Plog, Thomas Weaver, Reena Esmail, and Shawn Davern, which will be released in late 2023.

Brittany earned her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Boston University, Master of Music from Yale School of Music, and Bachelor of Music from Manhattan School of Music.

Martin McCain
trombone, weeks 1-2

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A third-generation musician, Martin McCain’s career spans an impressive range of musical genres. As an ambassador of the bass trombone, Martin maintains a versatile performance schedule as a soloist, recording artist, chamber, orchestral, jazz/commercial musician and educator. He is a four-time winner of the Global Music Awards and was featured as their “Emerging Artist” in Billboard magazine, with performances described as “solid and masterful,” (International Trombone Association Journal) with a “warm and beautiful,” tone (Glissando Magazine).

McCain’s performances include concerts at Carnegie Hall, Hollywood Bowl, Croatian National Theatre and others. His performances have been broadcast on CNN’s Juneteenth: A Global Celebration of Freedom, Radio Television Hong Kong and NPR’s “Performance Today”.

As a recording artist, Martin has released four CDs, Renew (2021), Trombone Czar: The Extended Version (2015), Shades (2014), and Trombone Czar: Russian Treasures Recorded Live! (2012). He can be heard on RCA Records, Motown Records, Atlantic Records, Summit Records and numerous film and video game soundtracks. As a soloist, Martin has performed with the Croatian Army Wind Band, United States Army Concert Band ‘s Own, the United States Army Brass Quintet, Laredo Philharmonic Orchestra, Kingsville Symphony Orchestra and the Balcones Chamber Orchestra.

As an orchestral musician, McCain is a member of the IRIS Collective, Victoria Bach Festival Orchestra, Gateways Music Festival Orchestra and regularly performs with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, San Antonio Symphony, Austin Symphony Orchestra. He has been invited to be guest bass trombone with numerous top-tier orchestras including the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, Utah Symphony Orchestra among others. As a chamber musician, Martin is a member of the Rodney Marsalis Philadelphia Big Brass and regularly performs with his wife, pianist Artina McCain as the McCain Duo.

As a jazz/commercial musician, McCain is the leader of the award-winning Austin based jazz trombone ensemble, JazzBonez. He has performed with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, Frank Sinatra Jr. Orchestra and several Broadway shows including recent tours of Funny Girl, Ain’t Too Proud, and Tina. Martin has also collaborated with a number of legendary artists such as Earth Wind and Fire, Roberta Flack, Bel Biv Devoe, Jon Batiste, Chaka Khan, Ne-Yo, Robert Glasper, The Roots, Lenny Williams, the Temptations and the Four Tops.

In the 2023-24 season, Martin will be in residence at Indiana University’s Jacob School of Music and the University of North Texas College of Music in addition to touring with the McCain Duo and Rodney Marsalis Philadelphia Big Brass. A passionate advocate of creating new trombone repertoire, McCain has commissioned and arranged works that are becoming standard in the canon. These works include his own arrangements of Weber/Rachmaninov, Jack Wilds’ Leviathan for trombone ensemble and Marcus Wilcher’s Shades (international solo competition repertoire).

In fall 2023, Dr. McCain joined the faculty at the University of Memphis Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music. He is also a Professor of Music at Texas State University and previously held positions at Henderson State University and Huston-Tillotson University. Dr. McCain’s students have been extremely successful in solo and ensemble competitions including those hosted by the International Trombone Association, the American Trombone Workshop, and the Big 12 Trombone Conference and are regular winners of university concerto competitions. In recognition of his teaching, Martin received the College Achievement Award in Teaching and the Presidential Distinction Award for Excellence in in both Teaching and Scholarly/Creative Activity categories. His students have been accepted into some of the nation’s most prestigious graduate programs such as the Juilliard School, Eastman School of Music, Yale University, Northwestern University, Manhattan School of Music, and the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music. In addition to his university teaching duties, Martin has spent summers on the faculty of the Interharmony International Music Festival (Italy), the SliderAsia Music Festival (Hong Kong) and the English Brass Academy (Croatia).

McCain received his Bachelor of Music degree with a business minor at the University of Southern Mississippi, a Master of Music, and Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin. Martin McCain is a performing artist for S.E. Shires, Reunion Blues Gig Bags and plays on the “McCain” signature mouthpiece series manufactured by Pickett Brass. In his spare time, Martin is an avid BBQ pitmaster and sports enthusiast.

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

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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.


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.

Pablo Rieppi

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Pablo Rieppi is a member of the New York City Ballet Orchestra. He is a regular guest with the New York Philharmonic and has performed with numerous esteemed ensembles, in a multitude of styles. Rieppi was involved in many Broadway productions, recorded numerous film scores and premiered compositions with several ensembles. An enthusiastic educator, Rieppi presents masterclasses abroad and throughout the U.S., and is a faculty member of Juilliard’s Pre-College Division, where he teaches private lessons, presents masterclasses, and co-directs the percussion ensemble. He has been a teaching artist with Carnegie Hall, the New York Philharmonic and the American Composers Orchestra.

Rieppi holds a master’s degree and professional studies certificate from Juilliard and a bachelor’s degree from George Mason University.

Rieppi’s book and audio accompaniments Snare Drum Technique: Essential Basics for Daily Practice and Accompaniment Music for Solo Snare Drum, Vol. 1 are available online.

She-e Wu

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She-e Wu has appeared as a solo artist at the 25th, 27th, and 30th Percussive Arts Society International Convention; Journées de la Percussion, NancyPhony Festival, perKumania festival, and PercuPassion Festival in France; Bach Symposium/Bach Variation Festival in Lincoln Center; Taiwan Connection concert at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center; International Percussion Festival and InterAmerican Music and Arts Festival Orchestra in Puerto Rico; Festival Internacional de Percusion “Ritmo Vital 2001” and National Percussion Convention in Spain; Fukui Marimba Seminar in Japan; Giornate della Percussione in Italy; Percussion Festival in Greece; Taipei International Percussion Convention, and many other festivals. She has performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at Carnegie Hall and Symphony Center, Chicago Chamber Musicians, and the Philadelphia Orchestra Chamber Music Series in Pearlman Hall at the Kimmel Center. Ms. Wu has performed as guest recitalist and clinician at universities, colleges, and conservatories in France, Belgium, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, England, Scotland, Germany, Spain, Greece, Japan, and Korea, as well as American music institutions and numerous PAS Days of Percussion throughout the United States.

Ms. Wu’s composition Blue Identity was written for Frederic Macarez and the Paris Conservatory CNR percussion ensemble. Blue Identity was premiered in Paris at the Journées de la Percussion festival, and the American premiere took place at the 27th Percussive Arts Society International Convention. K-PAX, a piece for marimba duo, was commissioned by the Taipei International Percussion Convention in 2002 and was premiered in Taiwan and Japan. UP!, for solo percussion and seven percussionists, received its premiere at the Midwest Clinic in Chicago in December 2009. The world premiere of Ms. Wu’s latest composition, What the Sun Would Say to the Sky, for marimba quartet, was premiered at PASIC 2011 in Indianapolis.

Ms. Wu has commissioned and premiered numerous works by Eric Ewazen, Ronald Caltabiano, Robin Engleman, Gerald Chenoweth, and many others. Ms. Wu’s recent commissions are pieces written by Lee Hyla, Paul Lansky, and Dafnis Prieto. The world premiere of the percussion concerto with wind ensemble written by Paul Lansky is scheduled for January 2015 with the Northwestern University Symphonic Wind Ensemble. Ms. Wu has served as a judge for the Paris International Marimba Competition, Greece International Competition, Italy International Competition, Atlanta Snare Drum Competition, PASIC Marimba Competition, P.A.S. Composition Competition (Large Percussion Ensemble), and International Percussion Ensemble Competition (College).

Ms. Wu’s recordings include Marimba Concerto by Eric Ewazen with the International Sejong Soloists, solo marimba CD Snapshot, Suite for Marimba and Flute by Alec Wilder with flautist Bart Feller, A Set of Songs and Dances by Doug Hill featuring Gail Williams on horn, and a chamber music recording with the American Brass Quintet of music by David Sampson. Her recording of Nos. 1, 2, and 3 of the Six Suites for Solo Cello by J. S. Bach, with Baroque embellishments by George B. Stauffer, was released in fall of 2014.

Ms. Wu is a clinician and recitalist for the Majestic, Mapex, Innovative Percussion, and Evans and Zildgian companies. Her signature mallets with Innovative Percussion are available worldwide. She plays on a concert marimba of her design by Majestic. Ms. Wu is associate professor of music and the head of the percussion program at Northwestern University.


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.


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.

Megan Gale
collaborative pianist
Xavier Suarez
collaborative pianist

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Xavier Suarez is a pianist, vocal coach, piano teacher, YouTuber, and founder of Teclado Music Institute. He is committed to bringing the joys of classical music to people of all ages and abilities through his work as a private piano teacher and recitalist. A sought-after collaborator, he works with numerous instrumentalists and singers across the United States. He was Music Director and Young Artist for Pensacola Opera in their 2016 season and collaborated at the 2013 Manhattan Summer Voice Festival as vocal coach and keyboardist. For 6 years he served as the Organist/Pianist at Olivet Lutheran Church in Sylvania, Ohio. He has been a faculty member at Friends Music Camp, and accompanist for choirs at Bowling Green State University and Bowling Green High School in Ohio. Educated at the University of Michigan and Eastern Michigan University, Mr. Suarez holds a MM in Piano Performance under Dr. Garik Pedersen and a MM in Collaborative Piano under Martin Katz.


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.

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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.


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.

Nate Ben-Horin
coordinator / coach

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Nate Ben-Horin is a Montreal-based pianist, composer, and vocal coach. He is an alumnus of UC Berkeley where he won the 2014 Austin F. William Prize in piano performance, and was subsequently hired as a staff accompanist and assistant choral director. He has participated in various opera training programs including the Lachine International Academy, the CoOperative Program, and the Highlands Opera Studio. He has worked widely with local singers and instrumentalists in the San Francisco area, as well as with West Edge Opera for several seasons as a repetiteur, harpsichordist, choir master, and promotional recitalist. A former solo student of Jeremy Denk, He recently completed a Master’s degree in collaborative piano at McGill University with Michael McMahon and Stephen Hargreaves. His graduate studies were funded by fellowships from McGill and UC Berkeley.

As a composer, his pieces tend to be lyrical, often seeking to integrate classical, contemporary, and American folk traditions. His chamber music has been premiered and performed by Celli@Berkeley, members of the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble, and the “Drawing Lineage, Building Legacy” project under the auspices of the 2016 National Queer Arts Festival. It has also been featured multiple times in UC Berkeley’s historic Noon Concert series. His teachers have included Montreal native Linda Bouchard, avant-garde jazz pianist Myra Melford, and Ken Ueno, who described his music as “compelling” in an interview with His classical training is supplemented with longstanding experience as a folk musician, including several years as the official accompanist of the Jewish Folk Chorus of San Francisco and the Nigunim Chorus of Berkeley, where he created improvised accompaniments for arrangements of folk songs in Yiddish, Hebrew, English and Ladino.

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.

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.

Jennifer Szeto

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Canadian pianist Jennifer Szeto carves a dynamic path as a producer, performer, and pedagogue. Praised for “an immense sweetness and precision which seemed to be flawless” (L’Opéra) and “amazing versatility” (Opera Ramblings), Jennifer is a graduate of L’Atelier Lyrique de l’Opéra de Montréal, San Francisco Opera’s Adler Fellowship, Canadian Opera Company Ensemble Studio, and the Merola Opera Program. She is a sought-after collaborator for contemporary creation and founding Artistic Director of Musique 3 Femmes, a creation company which commissions and produces operas by female composers and librettists in Canada. Recent premieres: include Keiko Devaux’s L’Écoute du perdu with Paramirabo and Le Vivier at Fonderie Darling (Montreal); INCONNU for UfaFabrik (Berlin); Triptyque with La Société de musique contemporaine du Québec, with works by Sonia Paço-Rocchia, Anna Pidgorna, Parisa Sabet; and Laurence Jobidon’s L’hiver attend beaucoup de moi with Opéra de Montréal, described by the Montreal Theatre Hub as “exactly what opera needs… bold, contemporary, poetic, political, feminist, theatrical, well-executed, and not afraid of traditionalists….”. A passionate mentor and advocate for young artists, Jennifer begins her tenure at Opéra de Montréal in the 2023/24 season as the Director of the Atelier Lyrique, one of Canada’s leading young artist training programs. She sits on the Board of Directors of the Association for Opera in Canada.
William Woodard
William Woodard

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William Woodard is a pianist, vocal coach and conductor based in Houston, TX. He joins the music staff of Houston Grand Opera this season where he will be assisting on FalstaffParsifalBig Swim and The Sound of Music. William has previously served on music staff at the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Washington National Opera and New Orleans Opera. Last season he joined the Met Music Staff under the baton of Daniele Callegari for La Traviata and covered the on-stage role of Boleslao Lazinski in their new production of Fedora.

William is an alumnus of many prestigious festivals including Wolf Trap Opera, the Merola Opera Program, the Aspen Music Festival, SongFest and AIMS in Graz where he was awarded the Outstanding Lieder Pianist Prize. This past summer, William joined the music staff at Wolf Trap as Chorus Master for their productions of Faustand Don Giovanni.

William made his Carnegie Hall debut while participating in Renée Fleming’s SongStudio in 2019. As a recitalist, he has performed at Bruno Walter Auditorium, at several embassies in Washington DC, with the Brooklyn Art Song Society, LA Opera’s At Home concert series, M Institute, Florida Keys Concert Association, the Missouri River Arts Festival and is thrilled to add DC Vocal Arts to this list. William is also an avid chamber musician, and a former member of the KOE Trio, which he co-founded at Manhattan School of Music. He now continues his love of chamber music as a Featured Musician with After Arts for the 2022-2023 season.

William is an alumnus of the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program as well Washington National Opera’s Cafritz Young Artist Program. 


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 @

Robie Jackson
Yoga Instructor