Music Lessons For Beginners

Beginner

Music Lessons For Beginners

Private Lessons, Group Classes, and More

At the Conservatory, we aspire to provide an accessible and high-quality music education for all experience levels. Pair up with an expert teacher for a private lesson or play with friends in a group class or Conservatory Prep Program.

 

ONLINE PRIVATE LESSONS  FALL CLASS SCHEDULE + REGISTRATION

piano Elijah

New Student Lesson Discount

$195 for six 30-minute lessons

In-person and online Zoom lessons give you access to more than 90 skilled faculty members for any instrument and genre. Join a community of more than 10,000 students and schedule your first lessons today!

 

REGISTRATION + INFO

students playing piano together

What You Can Expect

For Beginning Conservatory Students

Studying at the Conservatory is a great way to improve your music skills while you meet new people! We have a place for singers of every age, ability and musical interest. You can expect:

  • Highly qualified teachers who are well versed in teaching various styles of singing
  • Solo and group performance opportunities at the Helen Bader Recital Hall and in the community
  • An enjoyable learning experience and improved self-confidence
  • Expert guidance to improve your technique while studying music chosen to fulfill your personal goals.

 

Program Guide

  • Private Lessons | One-on-one study with a teacher who will help you reach your personal goals.
  • Group Classes | Learn alongside fellow students of similar age and skill level. Classes are a great place to start learning a single instrument, a style of music, or music theory.
  • Conservatory Prep Package – Suzuki Strings, Band Beginnings & Guitar | This comprehensive package includes a group class, private lesson, and music theory class.

 


Countdown to Kindergarten

ONLY AT WCM!

Smart Start™ Early Childhood Music

Last Fall, the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music becomes the first institution in the United States to offer Smart Start™, a new and innovative Early Childhood education program that uses musical activities to train fundamental cognitive skills for children ages 0 – 3.

Studies have demonstrated that Smart Start™ helps children achieve growth in vocabulary, pre-reading abilities, and singing ability after their first year, with similar levels of growth in years two and beyond.

VIEW SMART START


Boy Playing The Guitar

For Ages 3 and Up

Comprehensive Packages

In addition to individual music lessons and classes, kids & teens can enroll in several comprehensive packages that include a group class, private lesson, and music theory component.


NEW THIS YEAR

Jazz & Contemporary Music

The Conservatory’s new Jazz & Contemporary Music offerings will continue to preserve and share the unique heritage of American Jazz — a longstanding WCM tradition — while celebrating its proud heritage that is ever present in the music of today.

VIEW JAZZ & CONTEMPORARY MUSIC


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World-Class Faculty

Meet Our Teachers

SEE ALL FACULTY

Eliana Alcocer

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Percussion Performance | University of Wisconsin-Parkside

Background

  • Joined the WCM team in 2020.
  • Instructs, collaborates, and performs in a variety of settings.
  • Teaches through Ravinia’s Reach, Teach, Play program.
  • Received the Percussive Arts Societies’ Ludwig Industries Scholarship.
  • Was a soloist for the 2018 Wisconsin Days of Percussion.
  • Was a featured recitalist for the BMO noon concert series at UW-Parkside.

Emily Boone

Education

  • Doctorate of Musical Arts | University of Missouri – Kansas City
  • Master of Music | Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University
  • Bachelor of Music | Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University

Background

  • Passionate advocate of new music.
  • Works closely and collaborates with many living composers and musicians.
  • Performs and premieres works nationally and internationally.
  • Awarded the Concertmaster Fellowship as a student of Joseph Genualdi at the University of Missouri, Kansas City.
  • Often featured on the Kansas City label Mother Russia Industries.
  • Has been a part of numerous new music ensembles and performances, notably having worked closely with composer Chen Yi, whose Violin Concerto Chinese Folk Dance Suite Emily performed a new version of as a world premiere in 2018.

Alec Burke

Education

  • Bachelor of Science, Instrumental/General Music Education | Ball State University
  • Master of Music, Trumpet Performance | University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • Performer’s Certificate (in progress) | University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Background

  • Is on faculty as a brass instructor with several organizations in the Milwaukee area.
  • Served as the Muncie Symphony Orchestra’s Education Coordinator.
  • Performed as the 2017 Concerto Soloist with the Music for the Sake of Music Symphony Orchestra, a chamber musician for Classical Music Indy and the Muncie Symphony, and as a lead trumpet player for numerous musicals and shows across Central Indiana.
  • Has a breadth of experience teaching both in and out of the classroom including traditional public school ensembles, clinics and masterclasses, general music and PreK, and managing his own private studio.
  • Performs in his contemporary chamber ensemble Microcosm and with his acoustic pop duo Ekruteak with his fiancé, Jennifer Rodriguez.

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Ben Dameron

Background

  • Seattle born Ben Dameron picked up the guitar at age 11 and never put it down.
  • Received two degrees in classical guitar performance.
  •  An active performer and teacher in the greater Milwaukee area, making a name for himself as a versatile and prolific performer in classical music, jazz and gypsy jazz.
  • An enthusiastic teacher, Dameron has been on staff with the Latino Arts Strings program since 2017 as a classical guitar instructor, producing several prize winning students in the process.

Marcya Daneille

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and Voice Performance | Roosevelt University (Chicago Musical College)
  • Graduate Level Vocal Training | University of Iowa

Background

  • Joined the Vocal Arts faculty at the Conservatory in 2017.
  • Is a cross-genre singer that is classically trained, jazz influenced, and soul inspired.
  • Has taught private voice to students of all levels for thirty years, which includes more than a decade in New York.
  • Began her career singing career as a soprano and has sung with Lincoln Opera Chicago, the Lyric Theater of Illinois and the Bel Canto Chorus of Milwaukee.
  • Has gradually transitioned from singing classical music exclusively to performing an eclectic repertoire of music.
  • Has performed alongside a diverse group of critically acclaimed artists such as Simon Estes, Wycliffe Gordon, BeBe Winans, Vanessa Williams, Laurel Masse and Gerald Levert.

Andrea DeGreiff-Beisser

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts, Music – University of Nebraska-Kearney
  • Master of Music – University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Background

  • WCM faculty member since 2002.
  • Chosen at the age of 13 to participate in a solo concert with the Orchestra of the Conservatory of Music in Bogota, Colombia to play the Haydn Concerto in F.
  • Trained broadly in accompanying for instrumental and vocal ensembles and soloists.
  • Appeared as a recitalist at the University of Nebraska and the Biblioteca Luis Angel Arango Concert Hall and Olav Roots Auditorium in Bogota, Colombia.
  • Appeared at several opera productions with the UWM voice students, as well as several voice faculty recitals here at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music.
  • Studied under Harold Martina, Blanca Uribe, James Cook, Jeffrey Peterson, Katjia Phillambaum, and Judit Jaimes.

Maria Valentina Delgado

Education

  • Piano Performance Degree – Escuela de Música Manuel A. Lopez (Venezuela)
  • Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance – University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • Master of Music in Piano Performance – University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Background

  • Joined the Piano faculty at the Conservatory in 2010.
  • Has worked with a full range of students, from beginner to musicians at the university level, since she began teaching in 2001.
  • Has taught several individual and group lessons at UWM.
  • Debuted as a soloist at the age of 11 with the Caracas Municipal Symphony Orchestra.
  • Has performed with all the major symphony orchestras and theaters throughout Venezuela.
  • Won first prize in three piano competitions, the Harriet Serr Competition in 1994, the MoisésMoleiro National Competitions in 1996, and the McDowell Club of Milwaukee in 2005.
  • Was awarded the highest honor to a Venezuelan young artist, the Medal of the Third Grade Order, by President Dr. Rafael Caldera in 1997.

Drew Donica

Education

  • Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance with an emphasis in Piano Pedagogy – Lawrence University
  • Bachelor of Arts in Spanish – Lawrence University
  • Master of Music in Piano Performance and Pedagogy – University of Colorado-Boulder

Background

  • Joined the Piano faculty at the Conservatory in 2015.
  • Has been teaching since 2009 and enjoys teaching students of all ages and abilities.
  • Has presented on creativity, studio development, and Recreational Music Making (RMM) for the Music Teachers National Association national conferences (2017 Baltimore, 2016 San Antonio, 2015 Las Vegas).
  • Adjudicates for piano festivals, auditions, and competitions.
  • Serves as a board member of the Wisconsin Music Teachers Association.
  • Actively performs and collaborates with WCM faculty, students, and other musicians in the area.

Becca Dora

Education

Artist Diploma (current) | DePaul University

Background

  • Artist Diploma student studying at DePaul University with Alex Klein and Anna Velzo.
  • An oboe instructor through El Sistema Ravinia’s “Reach, Teach, Play!” program, where she teaches private and group lessons and instructs chamber music coachings and large ensemble rehearsals.
  • Substitute musician for the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and the Northbrook Symphony in Northbrook, IL.
  • Acting Second Oboe of the Sheboygan Symphony
  • Maintains a private studio in Chicago.
  • Recipient of a Teaching Fellowship through Musaid to teach and perform in San Salvador, El Salvador in the summer of 2016.
  • Performed with several Chicago ensembles such as the Chicago Symphonic Winds, the Chicago Composers Orchestra, and the Oistrakh Symphony.
  • Performed at the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition with her quintet, Second City Winds.
  • Performed with the Grammy award-winning band Evanescence at the Chicago Theatre in November of 2017.
  • Performed with artists such as Lindsey Stirling, Hanson, Josh Groban, and Idina Menzel.

Teresa Drews

Director, Education | Chair — Piano

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, cum laude, Piano Performance | Northwestern University
  • Master of Music, Piano Performance | Peabody Conservatory of Music of the Johns Hopkins University

Background

  • WCM faculty member since 2003, Piano Department chair since 2005, Director of Education since 2018.
  • Member of Pi Kappa Lambda, MTNA, WMTA and MMTA.
  • In her 23 years of teaching, she has taught group and private piano lessons at the Conservatory, as well as coached chamber music.
  • Through Conservatory Connections she has taught general music and piano to students throughout Milwaukee and most recently taught our Music Counts curriculum at St. Joseph Academy of Early Learning.
  • An active performer in the Milwaukee area, Ms. Drews often collaborates with WCM faculty and MSO musicians.
  • She also performs annually with the Washington Island Music Festival in Door County.
  • Has studied with Sylvia Wang, Ann Schein and Seth Knopp, and performed in master classes by David Burge and Menahem Pressler.
  • Prior to moving to Milwaukee, she taught piano in Baltimore, Maryland at the Friends School of Baltimore and the Music Workshop.

Adam Fisher

Chair – Woodwinds, Brass & Percussion

Education

  • Bachelor of Science, Music Education | University of Wisconsin – La Crosse
  • Master of Music, Trumpet Performance | University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee

Background

  • Joined the Conservatory faculty in 2017.
  • Plays with groups such as the Wisconsin and Milwaukee Philharmonics and the Lake County Symphony Orchestra.
  • Premiered new music with Present Music and DIY Chamber Ensemble.
  • Plays in the pit orchestras of dozens of musicals around Wisconsin.
  • Taught master classes throughout the Midwest.

Rachel Fritz

Chief Operations Officer

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, magna cum laude | University of Central Missouri
  • Master of Music | University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Background

  • Has served as the Chief Operations Officer at the Conservatory since 2014 after previously managing the Student Services department for four years.
  • Has been a member of the WCM Piano Faculty since 2007, specializing in instructing young pianists.
  • Certified as a teaching artist by the International Piano Teaching Federation.
  • Participated in the 2017 Community Arts Education Leadership Institute (CAELI).
  • Taught group piano at Des Moines Symphony Academy and maintained private studios in Lincoln, NE, and Warrensburg, MO.
  • Has been an active member of the Music Teacher National Association.
  • Serves as President for the Wisconsin Music Teachers Association.
  • Serves as pianist at Redemption Lutheran Church.

Aaron Gardner

Education

  • Berklee College of Music

Background

  • WCM faculty member since 2005.
  • Moved back to his roots in Milwaukee after 10 years of living in New York and touring and recording with the band ulu.
  • Has played and recorded with many bands and artists, including De La Buena, Choir Fight, Jamie Breiwick, Steve Peplin, The Static Chicken, Tristan Royalty Squad, The Extra Crispy Brass Band, The Soul Trio, The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, and Eric Bennet.

Jenny Gettel

Chair – Vocal Arts

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Choral Education | Lawrence University
  • Master of Music, Voice Performance | University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana

Background

  • WCM faculty member since 2002.
  • Soprano soloist with the chamber group Great Lakes Baroque.
  • Also served as principal soprano soloist with Ensemble Musical Offering, where she worked with Stanley Ritchie, Marion Verbruggen, Joshua Rifkin, and other Baroque specialists.
  • Has appeared as a soloist with Present Music, Bach Chamber Choir, Racine Symphony, and Skylight Opera, where she performed in a cycle of Monteverdi operas directed by Stephen Wadsworth.
  • A founding member of the a cappella group Polyhymnia, and director of contemporary music at St. Boniface Episcopal Church in Mequon.
  • Taught voice at Alverno College, as well as general music at New World Montessori, 81st Street School, and in the Whitefish Bay Public Schools.

Benjamin Haimann

Education

  • Bachelor’s Degree, Music Education, Music Performance | Ohio State University
  • Master’s Degree, Music Performance | University of South Carolina

Background

  • Began his musical studies at age nine, playing drum set and taking private percussion lessons.
  • Coached the percussion ensemble and spent time conducting the wind ensemble as a Teaching Assistant and Counselor for the Instrumental Music Program at The North Carolina Governor’s School East(summers of 2014-2015).
  • Was the Front Ensemble Instructor with the Grove City High School Marching Band, including a trip to the Rose Parade in Pasadena, California (2016-2017).
  • Received the prestigious Presser Foundation Scholarship while studying at Ohio State.
  • Worked as a Graduate Assistant for the University of South Carolina percussion studio and was the percussionist for the Spark Collective, a graduate quintet focusing on community engagement through music.
  • Won the concerto competition at the University of South Carolina in 2018 and performed Kevin Puts’ Marimba Concerto No. 1 with the University of South Carolina Symphony Orchestra in 2019.
  • Enjoys practicing marimba, making coffee, and hanging out with his dog, Lila.

Darcy Hamlin

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Music Education | Oberlin Conservatory of Music
  • Master of Music, Horn Performance | Cleveland Institute of Music

Background

  • Has served on the horn faculty of the Conservatory since 2017.
  • For over 30 years, she has taught a wide range of students from beginners to professionals that have gone on to attend prestigious universities and win positions in professional orchestras.
  • Featured as a concerto soloist with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, she has also held the 3rdHorn position since 2003, and is the founder of the Milwaukee Brass Quintet.
  • Principal Horn with both the Akron and Canton Symphonies in Ohio,and Associate Principal Horn with the Cleveland Pops Orchestra.
  • In addition to serving as Principal Horn for three summers with the Breckenridge Musical Festival, she has toured Asia with the Cincinnati Pops, as well as Europe with the Cleveland Orchestra.

William Helmers

Education

  • Bachelor of Music – Eastman School of Music
  • Master of Music – The Juilliard School of Music

Background

  • Re-joined the Conservatory Faculty in 2019, and has been a member of the Milwaukee Symphony since 1980.
  • Has worked with many other orchestras, including Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Cleveland, Ravinia Festival, Santa Fe Opera and Rochester.
  • Has also been a member of the contemporary ensemble Present Music since the group’s inception.
  • As a founding member of Musaik, a consortium of Milwaukee musicians, attends the Washington Island Music Festival in the summers.
  • Gave the North American premiere of John Adams’ clarinet concerto, Gnarly Buttons,with the composer conducting, and the world premiere of James Grant’s Concerto for Bass Clarinet.
  • Numerous premiere recordings of solo and chamber music, including compositions by Roberto Sierra, James Grant, Kamran Ince, Jerome Kitzke, and others.
  • Has been a member of the Portland-based Westwood Wind Quintet, participating in many of their recordings for Crystal Records.
  • Recently, William has enjoyed regular engagements with the Little Lake Stompers, a traditional jazz group.
Wisconsin Conservatory of Music Woodwind faculty member, William Helmers.

Allison Hull

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Vocal Performance | Lawrence University
  • Graduate Studies in Vocal Performance | University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Background

  • Served as a young artist for the Skylight, Glimmerglass Opera and Seattle Opera, where she gave a notable performance as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro.
  • A district winner and third place regional award winner at the Metropolitan Opera Council Auditions.
  • Recently appeared as Jane in Thank you, Next, Alto Soloist in Songs from the Uproar, Historian in Clara and Alto Soloist in The Poe Requiem.
  • Performed solos from Schubert’s Mass in G, Vivaldi’s Gloria, John Rutter’s Requiem, Bach’s Magnificat, Mozart’s Requiem and Mass in C, Handel’s Messiah, Haydn’s Pauken Messe, and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.
  • Sang the first full US performance of Carl Jenkin’s Mass for the Armed Man at St. John’s Cathedral in Milwaukee.
  • Member of the voice faculties of Carthage College and Parkside University, where she teaches both classical and music theater students of all ages and abilities.

Dr. Catalin Iacob

Education

Doctor of Musical Arts, Piano Performance | Texas Tech University (May 2020)

Background

  • Started studying piano at the age of seven in his native country of Romania, where he pursued intensive music classes all throughout high school.
  • Attended an impressive number of national and international piano competitions at that time, and scored in the top three at all of them.
  • Came to the United States in 2013 to continue his education in music by enrolling in a master’s degree program in collaborative piano and chamber music at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, under the coordination of Dr. Ilonka Rus.
  • Traveled and performed in the US as well as Europe and South America in countries including Colombia, Romania, Italy, and Germany.
  • Started his doctoral degree in 2016 under the guidance of the well-renowned pianist and pedagogue Dr. William Westney.
  • Served as a teaching assistant at the TTU School of Music and was one of the main piano accompanists for the voice and instrumental departments, chamber groups, and large ensembles.
  • Won the TTU 2019 Piano Concerto Competition, for which he was scheduled to perform Franz Liszt’s “Totentanz” in Fall 2020 with the TTU University Symphony Orchestra.

Raquel Iacob

Education

  • Bachelor of Music in Education | University of Wisconsin-Whitewater
  • Master of Music in Clarinet Performance; Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Music Theory | University of North Carolina at Greensboro
  • Doctor of Musical Arts in Clarinet Performance | Texas Tech University

Background

  • Performed with professional ensembles including the Lubbock Symphony Orchestra (TX), Southwest Symphony (NM), Piedmont Wind Symphony (NC), and Lake Geneva Symphony Orchestra (WI).
  • Graduate teaching assistant in the clarinet and music theory departments during masters and doctoral degrees.
  • Coached collegiate masterclasses in Oklahoma and New Mexico.
  • Currently the PreK-5 elementary general music teacher at Jerstad-Agerholm School in the Racine Unified School District.
  • In the process of publishing the book she wrote,  “Music Theory Fundamentals Workbook for Clarinet”, a workbook for clarinet students in the private lesson setting.
  • Performed on recording projects with composers Michael Fine, James Stephenson, and John Mackey (2).

Andrew Jackson

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Performance | Florida State University
  • Master of Music, Performance | University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Background

  • Started at the Conservatory in the fall of 2011.
  • Currently performs with the Sheboygan, Manitowoc and Racine symphonies and has performed with orchestras throughout Wisconsin, Iowa, Florida, and Georgia.
  • A long-time member of the Tallahassee Winds, he joined them on their 2004 tour to Australia.
  • In 2007, he performed with the Orquesta Sinfonica UANL in Monterrey, Mexico and later with the Nebraska Theatre Caravan on their Midwest tour.
  • Studied with Jeffrey Keesecker and Theodore Soluri.

Stefanie Jacob

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts in Music, Magna cum laude – Harvard University
  • Master of Music, with highest distinction in Piano Performance – Indiana University

Background

  • Joined the WCM Piano faculty in 1987.
  • Focuses on the areas of educating an array of students and chamber music.
  • Received the Milwaukee Civic Music Association’s award for Excellence in Studio Teaching.
  • Enjoys being an active musician in the Prometheus Trio, and participating in the Washington Island Music Festival.
  • Made her solo debut with the Boston Pops at age 17, and her Carnegie Hall debut in 1984.
  • Twice awarded Second Prize at the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, and received Indiana University’s Leo Weiner Prize for Chamber Music.
  • Has soloed with both the Milwaukee Symphony and the Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra.
  • Recorded for the Arundax, CRI, Fleur de Son, Equilibrium, and the Wisconsin Conservatory labels.
  • Received WCM’s “Teacher of the Year” honor in 2017.

Tobias James

Available January 2022

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Guitar Performance | Cleveland Institute of Music
  • Master of Music, Guitar Performance and Pedagogy | Peabody Institute

Background

  • Began to play Suzuki classical guitar at age six and Suzuki cello at age eight.
  • Received prizes at Guitar Foundation of America (4th place youth 2012), Indiana International Guitar competition (2nd place youth 2011), All Ohio Stroud Competition (4th place 2014), East Carolina Guitar competition, Louisville Guitar competition, and others.
  • As an avid flamenco guitarist, accompanies Peabody Preparatory’s flamenco dance class.
  • Wishes to bring this tradition back into the classical realm by commissioning new pieces that incorporate elements of flamenco as well as performing solo works of flamenco guitarists.
  • Has played in halls such as Mixon Hall in Cleveland, OH, Lutkin Hall Evanston, IL, Hatch Recital in Rochester, NY and Comstock Concert Hall in Louisville, KY.
  • Certified to teach Suzuki Guitar Book 1 and 2, and studied teaching under Travis Marcum, Jeremy Osborne, and Matt Hinsley.

Kari Johnson

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Piano Performance | St. Olaf College
  • Master of Music, Piano Performance/Pedagogy | University of Wisconsin-Madison

Background

  • Joined the WCM faculty in 2019 with 18 years of experience teaching private lessons as well as group piano.
  • Studied under Catherine Kautsky, Jessica Johnson, and Kenneth Graber.
  • Enjoys teaching students of all ages and levels, and her students have regularly participated in WMTA Auditions and the NFMC Festival.
  • Has served as an adjudicator for piano festivals and competitions.
  • Worked as a faculty member at community schools in the Boston, MA and Madison, WI areas.
  • Is a collaborative pianist for instrumental and vocal soloists and choirs.

Hannah Johnson

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Jazz Studies | Indiana University Jacobs School of Music

Background

  • Joined the Conservatory faculty in January 2019.
  • Teaches and plays various styles of music on the drum set, specializing in jazz.
  • Plays with her modern jazz quartet in the Milwaukee area.
  • Featured as an instructor for the Vic Firth video series “Inside the Teaching Studio” entitled How to Sound Like Elvin Jones.
  • Has played with musicians such as Leni Stern, Ingrid Jensen, and Jamie Baum.
  • Enjoys teaching the bucket drumming and world percussion classes through the Conservatory Connections program, as well as private percussion lessons.

Cecilio Negron Jr.

Background

  • WCM Conservatory Connections faculty since 2005.
  • Comes from a family of musicians and performers whose lineage can be traced to Puerto Rico and further back to Africa and Spain; during his childhood, both his father and uncle played major roles in the Midwest music scene as musicians, promoters, and bandleaders.
  • Started his music studies at the age of five at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music.
  • Studied in the high school music program and learned to read music, music theory, play drum-set and concert percussion, earning him top honors in solo and state competitions.
  • Began playing professionally by the age of 16, and at 21, embarked on his solo career, working to develop himself as an artist and teacher.
  • Started working with Milwaukee Public Theatre in 2000, teaching arts residencies, drumming, and touring in several theatre productions.
  • Can now be found performing with many successful local and national acts, with an extensive resume of performances at local and national community centers, schools, businesses, arenas, clubs, music venues, and private events.
  • Currently designs, manages, and facilitates his own musical ensembles, drumming workshops, drum circles, drum and dance residencies, drum making workshops, educational presentations, and musical performances.

Ryan Kahlbaugh

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Percussion Performance | Manhattan School of Music
  • Master of Music | DePaul University
  • Performance Certificate | DePaul University

Background

  • Has been teaching at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music since 2014.
  • Teaching a wide range of students, special areas of training include concert snare drum, xylophone, marimba, timpani, and drum set.
  • Performs extensively with orchestras such as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra with tours to Carnegie Hall, Grant Park Festival Orchestra, and the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra.
  • Began as Principal Percussion of the Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra in the 2017/18 season.
  • While a student at DePaul University, he participated in the Music Academy of the West festival in Santa Barbara, CA, as well as the Pacific Music Festival held in Sapporo, Japan.
  • He has also recorded percussion and drum set for the Fireside Theater’s (Ft. Atkinson, WI) production of Mary Poppins, The Wizard of Oz, It’s A Wonderful Life, Peter Pan and Sister Act as well as for the Milwaukee Repertory Theater’s production of The Color Purple and Dreamgirls.

Leah Kozelek

Education

  • Bachelor of Music Performance, emphasis in Piano Pedagogy | Viterbo University

Background

  • Graduated Magna Cum Laude and member of the Viterbo University Honors Program.
  • Has been teaching since 2006 and enjoys working with students of all ages and abilities.
  • Her students have participated in recitals, community music events, and Wisconsin Music Teachers Association (WMTA) district and state competitions.
  • She has served as adjudicator for the WMTA District Auditions
  • Her personal study of the Alexander Technique has been influential in her teaching and she has attended 13 summer workshops since 2006, working with teachers such as Michael Frederick, Martha Hansen Fertman, and Carol Boggs among many others.
  • Volunteered as WMTA Judges Coordinator, has enjoyed attending multiple WMTA state conferences, and most recently, the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) National Conference in Lake Buena Vista, FL in 2018.
  • She continues to serve on a local music worship team and has volunteered in several churches as main pianist and solo/ensemble vocalist since 2014.

Heinzel Kunsmann

Education

  • Bachelor of Music
  • Master of Music
  • Doctor of Musical Arts, Piano Performance – University of Kansas

Background

  • A piano teacher at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music since September 2013, and the Milwaukee High School of the Arts since November 2013.
  • His musical interests have taken him throughout the United States as well as to Europe and Asia.
  • Heinzel performs regularly at the Milwaukee Veterans Affairs Clinic, David Barnette’s Art Gallery, Alexian Village, St. John’s on the Lake and Chai Point.
  • Many of his current students participate in annual events such as WSMA, the Federation Festival, Wisconsin Music Teachers Association Auditions and the Wisconsin Conservatory’s Piano Festival.
  • In addition, they perform twice every year in fall and spring studio recitals held at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music.
  • His students span a wide range of age, ability and interest.

Leanne League

Education

  • Undergraduate Degree, Violin/Baroque Violin | Eastman School of Music & Florida State University
  • Masterʼs Degree | University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she played in the Strelow String Quartet and studied with Vartan Manoogian.

Background

  • Leanne League is the violin and viola professor at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, where she was named the 2010 Teacher of the Year by the Wisconsin chapter of the American String Teachers Association.
  • Serves as the associate concertmaster of the Madison Symphony and assistant concertmaster of the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra.
  •  Has also performed extensively with the Ancora String Quartet and the UW-Whitewater Piano Trio, and her performances have taken her to Amsterdam, London, Paris, Vienna, Graz, Spoleto, Slovenia, Costa Rica, and throughout the United States.  Leanne League
  • Was a fellow at the New World Symphony in Miami, where she performed occasionally as concertmaster and principal second violin.
  • Played in the Strelow String Quartet and studied with Vartan Manoogian while at UW-Madison.
  • Chamber music and orchestral festivals include the Tanglewood Music Festival, Festival dei Due Mondi in Italy, the Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society, AIMS in Austria, and the National Repertory Orchestra.

Alexander Mandl

Education

  • Bachelor of Fine Arts | Carnegie Mellon University
  • Master of Music | Yale University
  • Artist Diploma | Yale University
  • Doctor of Musical Arts | University of Wisconsin – Madison

Background

  • Joined the WCM violin and chamber faculty in 2003.
  • Has taught worldwide with 35 years of teaching experience, ranging from beginners to graduate school and professional level musicians.
  • Has performed worldwide in prestigious venues such as Carnegie Hall, Weill Recital Hall, Avery Fisher, Auditório Manuel de Falla, and Memorial of Latin America.
  • Has shared the stage with eminent artists such as Yo-Yo Ma, Mathieu Dufour, Eric Friedman, Sidney Harth, Caio Pagano, Frank Morelli, Wang Jian, Amit Peled, Susan Babini and Aldo Parisot.
  • Has enjoyed a multifaceted career as a soloist, orchestral and chamber musician, recording artist, pedagogue, adjudicator, and conductor.
  • Founding member of the critically acclaimed Philomusica Quartet.
  • Concertmaster of the Kenosha Symphony Orchestra and Racine Symphony Orchestra, and Assistant
  • Concertmaster of the Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra/Milwaukee Musaik.
  • Has performed at Chamber Music Milwaukee, Frankly Music, Fine Arts at First, Sunday Live from the Chazen, Dame Myra Hess Concert Series; to name a few.
  • Has appeared under conductors such as Eleazar De Carvalho, Gunther Herbig, Robert Shaw, Claudio Santoro and Isaac Karabtchevsky.
  • Studied with violinists Sidney Harth, Erick Friedman, Robert McDuffie, and Vartan Manoogian; as well as conductors Eleazar de Carvalho, David Stern, David Becker, James Smith; and members of the Tokyo, Yale, and the Paganini string quartet
  • Recipient of the prestigious Ivan Galamian Award, Carnegie Tradition Award, Yale Alumni Prize and the Miles Prize.

Sue Medford

Education

  • Piano Pedagogy Professional Training Program – New School for Music Study
  • Western Carolina University

Background

  • WCM faculty member since 2005.
  • While at the New School, studied with founder Frances Clark and co-founder Louise Goss, as well as renowned pedagogue Richard Chronister, composer David Kraehenbuehl, and author and composer Elvina Pearce.
  • After graduating, Ms. Medford became a supervisor in the professional department and served as a clinician in teacher workshops across the US.
    She also taught piano at the New School for Music Study, in Chicago and at an American school in Germany.
  • Was also the National Representative for Summy-Birchard Music Publishing Company.
    She is the founder of Piano Arts, a National Concerto and Solo Competition.
  • Following her move to Milwaukee, was appointed by the Milwaukee Symphony as the Director of Education and Education Concert Manager, positions she held for 23 years.

Tatiana Migliaccio

Education

  • Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance | Lviv National Music Academy
  • Master of Music in Violin Performance | Lviv National Music Academy

Background

  • Joined the Violin faculty of the Conservatory in 2005.
  • Previous teachers include Alexander Tatarinzew, Eleonor Stanlis, and Mark Zinger.
  • Received Suzuki violin training for levels 1-7 from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and Deerfield Trinity University.
  • An avid musician, Tatiana began her musical career performing in the Lviv Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra, touring to countries such as Poland, Germany, Bulgaria, and Estonia.
  • Has also performed with the Rockford Symphony Orchestra, the American Polish Orchestra, and the Chicago University Orchestra.
  • Had the great privilege in performing with astounding musicians, including Itzhak Perlman, Joshua Bell, and Doc Severinsen.
  • Has worked with artists such as Rachel Barton Pine, Regina Carter, and Almita Vamos in numerous workshops.
  • Previously taught at the Rockford College Music Academy.

Laura Mintz

Education

  • Bachelor of Music | Indiana University
  • Master of Music | University of Michigan

Background

  • Joined the Conservatory in 2018.
  • Received Suzuki Teacher Training with Mimi Zweig and Judy Offman.
  • Has taught students of all ages and levels for 25 years.
  • Created and directed Suzuki and traditional instrumental programs in schools in New York, Texas, Wisconsin, and London.
  • Has enjoyed a varied career as an orchestral violinist and freelance chamber musician, performing in the US and Europe with the New World Symphony, New Haven Symphony, Bayou City Chamber Orchestra, National Repertory Orchestra, and the Spoleto Festival Orchestra.
  • Chosen by Isaac Stern and Sir Georg Solti to perform and record as a member of the Solti Orchestra Project at Carnegie Hall.
  • Received first prize in the Fischoff International Chamber Music Competition.

Katharyn Nelson

Education

Bachelor of Music, Performance, Minor in Piano Pedagogy | Lawrence University

Background

  • Joined the WCM Piano and General Music Faculty in 2018.
  • Earned her Bachelor’s degree from Lawrence University in the studio of Professor Anthony Padilla, graduating magna cum laude and a member of Phi Beta Kappa.
  • Has performed in several competitions and masterclasses, playing for musicians such as internationally-renowned pianist Jeremy Denk and pianist and harpsichordist Lorna Peters.
  • Enjoys exploring the arts of all kinds and holds an additional degree in English.
  • Continues to collaborate with instrumentalists and choirs.

Linda Numagami

Education

  • Masters Degree | The Juilliard School
  • Postgraduate Degree | San Francisco Conservatory of Music
  • Bachelors Degree | New England Conservatory

Background

  • Linda Numagami joined the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra as acting section-violist from 2018-2020.
  • Has performed with the San Francisco Symphony and the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra, and as an active chamber musician, Numagami has performed with the Ceres Quartet, the Boston Symphony Orchestra Prelude Series, and Music For Food (San Francisco and New York).
  • Has collaborated with Kim Kashkashian, Natasha Brofsky, Daniel Phillips, Ian Swensen and other renowned artists.
  • As a teacher, Numagami received a 2016 Juilliard Morse Teaching Fellowship to teach at the Harmony Program in New York.
  • Linda was also awarded a 2016 Juilliard Community Engagement Grant which enabled her to present a week-long series of concerts in her hometown of Reading, Pennsylvania.
  • She and flautist Katie Althen brought music to several assisted-living facilities that lacked activity budgets.
  • Linda also was awarded a 2015 New England Conservatory Entrepreneurial Musician Grant to create a multi-disciplinary project called Silence Speaks.
  • Most recently she was awarded a 2021 Grow Your Art Project Grant as an alumni of the New England Conservatory of Music.

Colin O’Day

Background

  • Milwaukee-native freelance performer with performing credits around Wisconsin.
  • An advocate of new music who commissioned and premiered a new work for marimba trio by composer Ivan Trevino in 2014.
  • Principal Timpanist of the Sheboygan Symphony Orchestra and the Milwaukee Philharmonic
  • Percussionist with the Festival City and Beloit-Janesville Symphony Orchestras.
  • Percussion Instructor at New Berlin West High School and Whitefish Bay High School.
  • Has performed as a substitute and extra percussionist and timpanist with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra, the Wisconsin Philharmonic, and the Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra.
  • During the summer, plays with the Northern Sky Theater, a theater company that performs at Peninsula State Park in Door County, WI.

Johnny Padilla

Background

  • Johnny Padilla is currently leading his group in support of his recording “Bright Morning” on the BP Music label.
  • Johnny has been a touring musician for Jimmy Buffett, Mongo Santamaria and Angela Carrasco.
  • Since moving to Milwaukee, he has performed with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and the Milwaukee Repertory Theater.
  • Johnny has been a featured artist for:
    •  “Jazz in Cutler Park” Waukesha, WI
    • “ Third Ward Jazz Festival” Milwaukee, WI
    • “Starry Nights” Wilson Center Brookfield, WI
    • The Towers Concert” Narragansett, RI
    • “Arts Concert” Vero Beach, FL
    • “The Miami Latin Jazz Festival” Miami, FL
    • “The Dade County Youth Fair” Miami, FL
    • “The Dade County Book Fair” Miami, FL
    • “Tropical Nights” Hollywood, FL
    • “Artwalk” Hollywood, FL
    • “Riverwalk Sunday Brunch” Ft. Lauderdale, FL
    • “The Hispanic Heritage Festival” Miami, FL;
    • “The Beaux Arts Festival of Art” Miami, FL
    • “The Art Council’s Concert” Key West, FL
    • Pleasure Island @ Walt Disney World, Orlando, FL.
  • Johnny has toured as a musician to the countries of Austria, The Bahamas, Canada, Colombia, England, France, Italy, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and throughout the United States of America.

Talia Pavia

Co-Chair – Strings

Education

  • Bachelor of Music | Northern Illinois University
  • Master of Music | Northern Illinois University
  • Performer’s Certificate | Northern Illinois University

Background

  • Member of the Conservatory String Faculty since 2018
  • Studied with international soloist Shmuel Ashkenasi and trained with the Grammy Award-winning Vermeer Quartet as a member of NIU’s Graduate String Quartet In-Residence
  • Received numerous awards and scholarships, including graduate fellowships, from both the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi and the NIU Graduate School to pursue violin studies.
  • Performs as Associate Principal Second Violin of Camerata Chicago, is on the substitute list for the Minnesota Orchestra, and has touredboth nationally and internationally in chamber music festivals, including the Zeister Musiekdagen Chamber Music Festivalin the Netherlands.
  • As first violinist of the Ethereal Shima Quartet, her chamber music interpretations have been called “remarkably sensitive and mature” by John von Rhein of the Chicago Tribune.
  • Performance credits include the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic (Concertmaster, Emmy Award-winning recording), Chicago’s Symphony Center, and at acclaimed venues throughout the world with renowned artists including the incomparable fiddler Mark O’Connor and jazz Vocalist Kurt Elling.
  • Pavia’s students have won numerous concerto competitions and have gone on to pursue classical and contemporary violin performance at universities such as the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and the Berklee School of Music.

Phillip Pearl

Education

  • Bachelor of Fine Arts, Music and Theatre | University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • Master of Music, Opera | University of Wisconsin-Madison

Background

  • WCM faculty member since 1994.
  • Studied with Karlos Moser, Kammersanger Jean Cox, Anna Reynolds, Mimmi Fulmer, Lenore Lynde Horsman and Richard Winter.
  • One of only eleven people chosen nationwide to participate in “Masterclasses in the Art of Singing Wagner.”
  • Has sung major operatic and oratorio roles throughout Wisconsin, and has recorded for Wisconsin Public Radio and The Symposium for Church Composers.
  • Directing credits include extensive work with children’s theatre and many opera company productions.

Ruben Piirainen

Education

  • Lawrence University Conservatory of Music
  • Bowling Green State University

Background

  • Ruben Piirainen is a Milwaukee-based pianist, music director, vocal coach, composer, and local restaurant owner.
  • Was on the music staff of the Florentine Opera for six seasons where he coached and accompanied the Studio Artist Program.
  • During his time with the Florentine Opera, Ruben was also involved with music preparation for all mainstage productions, played in the pit orchestra, presented a recital of new operatic works at the National Opera Center in New York, and performed solo recitals with opera stars Alyson Cambridge and Noah Stewart.
  • He has also worked extensively with Milwaukee Opera Theatre, Skylight Music Theatre, Present Music, Kenosha Symphony Orchestra, Festival City Symphony, Theatre Gigante, Sunset Playhouse, Music by the Lake, and Opera for the Young.
  • His original one act children’s opera A BUSY BEE was commissioned and premiered by the Florentine, and received subsequent performances by Opera Carolina.
  • A Hal Leonard Corporation recording artist, and has been on the faculties of Interlochen Arts Camp, Bluffton University, and Bowling Green State University.
  • Has also received commissions for compositions from Skylight Music Theatre and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Wisconsin Conservatory of Music Piano faculty member, Ruben Piirainen.

Orlando Pimentel

Education

  • Master of Music, Clarinet Performance | University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee

Background

  • Joined the WCM Faculty in 2015.
  • Born in Caracas, Venezuela and began his musical training in Venezuela’s System of Youth Orchestras, also known as “El Sistema”.
  • Was a member of the “Simon Bolivar” Symphony Orchestra and performed with such renowned conductors as Claudio Abbado, Sergiu Comissiona, Gustavo Dudamel, Eduardo Mata, Sergei Senkov, among others
  • Participated in master classes held by Luis Rossi, Anthony Pay, Walter Boeykens, Kalman Berkes, Eddy Vanoosthuyse, Michel Lethiec, Mario Frogionni, Walter Seyfarth, Judit Jaimes and Raquel Adonaylo.
  • Together with three other colleagues, formed the Caracas Clarinet Quartet, a chamber ensemble that has performed throughout Venezuela, as well as in China, Europe, and South America. In addition to winning the 1996 National Artist Award for Best Classical Ensemble, the quartet released three CD’s: Cuarteto de Clarinetes de Caracas, Aires Tropicales, and Suelos.
  • Performs regularly with the Madison Symphony Orchestra, Madison Symphony Chorus, Fox Valley Symphony, Green Bay Symphony, Racine Symphony, Kenosha Symphony, and Festival City Symphony Orchestra.
  • Performed with the “Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society” Summer Festival in Madison, as well as the Rural Musicians Forum in Spring Green, WI.

Sabrina Raber

Education

  • Undergraduate Degree | Ohio State University
  • Masters Degree | Music and Community Partnership – University of South Carolina

Background

  • Sabrina Raber is a performer, educator, and entrepreneur based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
  • Fellow for the Global Leaders Program, where she earned an Executive Graduate Certificate in Social Entrepreneurship, Teaching Artistry, and Organizational Management in 2019.
  • As a student at the University of South Carolina, Sabrina developed a program entitled, Find Your Beat, a recycled instrumental music education program for underserved children.
  • Has performed with ensembles including the Long Bay Symphony, Aiken Symphony, Columbia Choral Society, the Spark Chamber Ensemble, and the University of South Carolina Symphony Orchestra where she performed as soloist.
  • Was a top finalist for the National Flute Association’s C.R.E.A.T.E Entrepreneurship competition, a two-time Masterclass winner of the South Carolina Flute Society Competition, and a winner of the University of South Carolina Concerto Competition.
  • Led masterclasses in both the United States and in Chile, where she was a guest artist for the international Peñalolén Flute Festival.
  • She has also presented research on the impact of music education on under-resourced children through the use of alternative music education techniques.
  • Outside of the music world, Sabrina is an avid photographer, a self-identified foodie, sports fan, and lover of all things wonderful.

Charlie Rasmussen

Co-Chair – Strings

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts in Music | Luther College
  • Master of Music in Cello Performance | University of North Carolina – Greensboro
  • Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Music Theory | University of North Carolina – Greensboro
  • Certificate in Suzuki Pedagogy | The University of Denver

Background

  • Suzuki cello instructor at the Conservatory since 2016.
  • Trained by the Suzuki Association of the Americas to teach Suzuki Cello Units 1-10, and provides lessons for a full range of students.
  • Studied the Suzuki Method with Carol Tarr.
  • Active as a modern cellist, baroque cellist, and viola da gambist performing with the Wisconsin Baroque Ensemble and Sonata à Quattro.
  • Was the guest artist for the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater’s Cello Fest Clinic in May 2018.
  • Has served as the principal cellist with the Danville Symphony Orchestra (VA) and the Madison Bach Musicians.
  • Previously performed with the Vitali Ensemble, the New York Continuo Collective, the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra (CT), and the Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra (NC).
  • His solo CD, 11 Capricci by Joseph Dall’Abaco,was released by Centaur Records in July 2018.
  • He has recorded tracks for Grammy Award Winning Broadway composer, Paul Bogaev.

Anna Rasmussen

Education

  • Bachelor of Music Education with a Strings Emphasis | Baylor University
  • Master of Music in Violin Performance | University of North Carolina

Background

  • Violin and Viola faculty at the Conservatory since 2016.
  • Completed Suzuki Teacher Training with Julia Hardie, Mark Mutter, Doris Preucil, Ann Smelser, Nancy Jackson, and Kathleen Spring and Sarah Bylander Montzka, and long-term training with Allen Lieb at the School for Strings in New York City.
  • Over 11 years of teaching experience in Suzuki, traditional, and El Sistema-inspired schools in Wisconsin, Connecticut, North Carolina, and Texas.
  • Plays Baroque violin in Early Music ensembles in Beloit, Madison, and Milwaukee.
  • Performed in the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra, Western Piedmont Symphony, Raleigh Symphony Orchestra, Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra, and the Waco Symphony Orchestra.
  • In 2016 recorded tracks for Grammy award winning Broadway composer, Paul Bogaev.

Jennifer Rodriguez

Education

  • Bachelor of Science, Music Education | Ball State University
  • Master of Arts (in progress), Flute Performance | University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Background

  • Spent the past 5+ years teaching woodwind sectionals, flute sectionals, and private flute lessons at a variety of schools in the greater Indianapolis area.
  • Worked as the Community Programs Assistant for Classical Music Indy 2018-2019 and as Assistant Education Coordinator for the Muncie Symphony Orchestra in Spring 2018.
  • Worked as an Education Intern for the Chicago based not-for-profit, Fifth House Ensemble, in 2017.
  • Acted as inaugural secretary for the Flute Guild at Ball State University in 2017.
  • Performed Density 21.5 in Summer 2017 at the Milwaukee Art Museum through the Fresh Inc. Festival.
  • Sings with her band EKRUTEAK.
  • Spends her summers working as Program Coordinator for Music for the Sake of Music, a music not-for-profit providing free lessons and music ensembles in Green Bay, WI.

Lynn Roginske

Education

  • Bachelor of Music | Wisconsin College – Conservatory
  • Master of Music | Wisconsin Conservatory of Music
  • Wisconsin D.P.I. Certification in General Music, Adaptive Music, and Choral Education | Alverno College

Background

  • Has been a member of the Piano faculty at the Conservatory for over 30 years.
  • Provides lessons for beginners and continuing students of all ages.
  • Served as the music specialist with Milwaukee Public Schools for 25 years, retiring in 2014.
  • Specializes in songwriting, arranging for choral ensembles, and early childhood education, and enjoys contemporary piano styles including jazz, blues, pop, and rock.
  • Performs for various events throughout Wisconsin, in high demand as both a piano soloist and member of a jazz trio: Recent engagements have included Greendale Gazebo Village Nights, Wilson Center for the Arts, Alexian Village, Schlitz Audubon Nature Center, Betty Brinn Children’s Museum, and the Ovation Jewish Home.
  • Stays active in the community by being the Children’s Program Notes Host for the Festival City Symphony.
  • Took part in summer studies at the KodályMusic Institute, which serves to promote professional development for music educators.

Barbara Schneider

Director, Community Partnerships

Education

  • Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance | University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh
  • Master of Music degree in Violin Performance and Pedagogy from the Peabody Conservatory

Background

  • Conservatory violin faculty since 2017.
  • Has studied chamber music with members of the Tokyo, Juilliard, Cleveland, and Orford String Quartets.
  • Coached advanced chamber music groups in the Pre-Conservatory Violin Program, created and coached the Adult Chamber Music Program, and led Suzuki group classes while teaching at the Peabody Institute in Baltimore for 16 years.
  • Barbara’s students have been consistently recognized for their talent, being accepted into major music schools and festivals including the Manhattan School of Music, the Ithaca Summer Institute, and the Interlochen Arts Academy.
  • A founding member of the Tempest Trio, and a recipient of the Peabody Development Grant for the trio.
  • Performed regularly with orchestras such as the Baltimore Opera Orchestra, the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, the Wolf Trap Opera Company, and the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra.
  • Has served as the concertmistress of the Bach Cantata Series, the Young Victorian Theatre Company, and Opera Vivente.

Matthew Schroeder

Education

Bachelor of Fine Arts, with honors, Guitar Performance | University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee

Background

  • WCM Faculty member since 1992.
  • Milwaukee based WAMI (Wisconsin Area Music Industry) winning guitarist who is equally at home on acoustic or electric guitar.
  • As a fingerstyle guitarist, studied under John Stropes, and graduated with a performance degree in American fingerstyle guitar.
  • Has performed in America and Canada, been featured on local television and radio, and can be heard on the CD compilation American Finger-Style Guitar circa 1999.
  • Is the Artistic Director for the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music’s annual Guitar Weekend Workshop and Interlochen College of Creative Arts’ Fingerstyle Guitar Workshop.
  • Performs acoustically as a soloist, in a duo with vocalist Lynda Lee, and with the trio La Guitarra.
  • As a rock guitarist, performed extensively throughout the Midwest with Blackfish, Pet Engine, Steve Grimm and the Thrill Cats, and Jamie Jess, and the WAMI-award winning Barbeez.
  • Is featured instructor on the Hal Leonard DVDs Acoustic Guitar Licks Goldmine and Rock Guitar Licks Goldmine, which were released in Spring 2011.

Joshua Sevigny

Education

  • Bachelor’s in Music Performance | Crane School of Music
  • Master’s in Music Performance | University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee

Background

  • Holds principal positions with the Sheboygan Symphony Orchestra and the Lake County Symphony Orchestra.
  • Has performed with the Southwestern Suburban Symphony Orchestra, Present Music Milwaukee, Northern Symphonic Winds, Racine Symphony, Wisconsin Philharmonic, Antioch Brass Quintet, and The Big Top Circus Band, and is on numerous sub lists in both Wisconsin and Illinois.
  • Performs with a number of local jazz and rock groups in the Milwaukee area.
  • Runs a large, successful low brass studio.
  • Has placed in and won numerous national and international competitions.
  • Does recitals and masterclasses at universities and solos with orchestras in the area, like the Lake County Symphony Orchestra this season.

Dana Sherman

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts, Music Performance and Mathematics | University of Wisconsin – Madison
  • Master of Music, Music Performance | Northwestern University

Background

  • Started at the Conservatory in the Fall of 2018.
  • Is currently Principal Horn of the Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra, Third Horn of the Wisconsin Philharmonic, and a member of Alloy Horn Quartet, which was the Featured Guest Artist at the 2018 International Horn Symposium and featured soloists with the Kenosha Symphony Orchestra and Dubuque Symphony Orchestra.
  • Is a substitute musician with Lyric Opera, Milwaukee Symphony, Fox Valley Symphony Orchestra, and Grand Rapids Symphony.
  • Held positions in Omaha Symphony (Acting Associate Principal Horn) and New Mexico Philharmonic (3rd Horn).
  • Served as Brass Instructor and Associate Band Director with the El Sistema inspired program at Ravinia.
  • Taught horn at the Merit School of Music in Chicago, Glendale Community College in Phoenix, Arizona, and the Omaha Conservatory of Music.
  • Played at several summer music festivals, including Peninsula Music Festival (in Door County, WI), Grand Teton Music Festival (in Jackson Hole, WY), Pacific Music Festival (Japan), Sarasota Music Festival (Sarasota, FL), and Aspen Music Festival (Aspen, CO).

Haeshin Shin

Online Only

Education

  • Bachelor of Music Degree (Cum Laude) | Seoul National University
  • Master of Music Degree | Boston University
  • Doctor of Musical Arts | Boston University

Background

  • From professional musical engagements to educational activities and community service at various settings, Haeshin’s international and multi-cultural experience helped her develop a unique insight into the universal value of music education.
  • Native of South Korea, she has appeared in solo recitals, concerts, and festivals throughout the US, Russia, UK, Luxemburg, Belgium, Puerto Rico, China, and Korea.
  • During the recent seasons she has performed at Sejong Center for the Performing Arts (Seoul, Korea), Stern Auditorium, Weill Recital Hall (Carnegie Hall) and Tsai Performance Center (Boston), as well as at Harvard, the Moscow Conservatory, among others.
  • Haeshin is the founder and Artistic Director of the Medtner Society of Korea, and joined the Conservatory faculty in the fall of 2019.
  • Haeshin’s performance in the 75th anniversary of Leonard Bernstein Piano Recital at Lenox Library (2018) was broadcast on CTSB, the public channel in the Berkshires, MA.
  • She won 1st prize at American Protégé Concerto Competition, 1st prize at American Protégé Romantic Music Competition, 2nd prize at Richmond Piano Competition
  • As a collaborative pianist, she was granted a fellowship at Garth Newel Music Center with her piano quartet, and recently went on concert tours in Washington, D.C. including the White House Holiday Performance Talent, Ireland, UK, and Spain with Boston College High School Concert Choir.

Mitch Shiner

Chair, Jazz & Contemporary Music

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Emphasis in Jazz Studies | Indiana University Jacobs School of Music
  • Performer’s Certificate for Senior Recital

Background

  • WCM faculty member since 2016.
  • Began playing drums at age eight and has been studying percussion since age nine.
  • Co-leads tour-de-force fusion group, “Match Stick,” which released a self-titled album in 2019.
  • Released his debut CD, “FLY!”, in 2014, which invites listeners on a musical journey of original compositions and out-of-the-box arrangements for 20-piece big band.
  • Featured clinician for the 2015 Summerfest Big Band Camp, along with Curt Hanrahan and Mike Steinel.
  • Conducted masterclasses at UW-Parkside, University of Indianapolis, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, Park Tudor School, and Nicolet High School.
  • Teaches percussion at several Milwaukee public schools through the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music’s Conservatory Connections program.

Taylor Skiff

Education

  • Bachelor of Music | University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Master of Music | Juilliard School

Background

  • Cello instructor at the Conservatory since 2018.
  • Past cello teachers include Timothy Eddy, Parry Karp, and Uri Vardi.
  • Has been a featured soloist with multiple orchestras, including the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and the  Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra, performing Ludwig van Beethoven’s Triple Concerto, Ernest Bloch’s Schelomo, Antonín Dvořák’s Cello Concerto, and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme.
  • In addition to his solo playing, Taylor is an avid orchestral musician, and has performed several times at both Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall.
  • Most recent orchestral  appointments include the assistant principal cellist of the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra (2010-2011), co-principal and section cellist of The Juilliard Orchestra (2013-2015), and co-principal  cellist of The Orchestra Now (2015-2016).
  • Former cellist of the University  of Wisconsin’s Perlman Piano Trio (2010-2013).
  • Has been teaching the cello privately for over a  decade.

Shaddai Amor Solidum

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts, Vocal Music – Korea National University of Arts
  • Master of Music. Vocal Performance – University of Wisconsin – Madison
  • Professional Certificate in Music, Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts
  • Diploma in Creative and Performing Musical Arts, University of the Philippines

Background

  • Shaddai joined the Vocal Arts Faculty in July 2019.
  • Has appeared in operatic roles such as Mimi in La Bohème at Wisconsin Union Theater, Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte in Hong Kong, Rosina in Il Barbiere diSiviglia, and Blanche in Dialogues of the Carmelites.
  • In concerts, she sang as Soprano soloist for Handel’s Messiah, and Vivaldi’s Gloria in Korea and the Philippines.
  • With emphasis on classical voice, Shaddai also teaches voice in different genres such as CCM, Broadway musical, and jazz.

Jeanne Marie Stalteri

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Saxophone Performance | Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania
  • Bachelor of Music, Music Education | Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania

Background

  •  Joined the Conservatory faculty in the Fall of 2019.
  • Worked as an orchestra musician for Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines May – August 2018.
  • Recorded 2016 CD release “Identity” with the Slippery Rock University Jazz Ensemble, featuring guest artist Troy Roberts.
  • Has played with artists such as Sean Jones, John Clayton, and John Daversa.

Michael Standal

Background

  • Has been a member of the Conservatory since 2017 serving as a guitar instructor, and working for the Guitar Prep Program.
  • Teaching for over 33 years, Michael specializes in genres such as jazz, fusion, rock, alternative, and finger-style acoustic.
  • Additionally, emphasizes in music technology, composition, and production.
  • His compositions have been placed in over 1,000 different television shows and films worldwide including American Idol, Dateline NBC, The Today Show, and The Emmy Awards.
  • Corporate music work includes extensive recording and production for Hal Leonard’s play-a-long series, 2018’s “Stronger Together” live music activation for Aurora Health Care and extensive jingle and custom music composition, recording and production.
  • Performed, recorded and composed in an extremely wide variety of genres and styles, including Jazz, Latin Jazz, Rock, Fusion, Funk, Blues, R&B, Gospel, Alternative and Pop and proficient in Metal, Country, Folk, Finger-style Acoustic, Classical and other styles.

Derek Taylor

Background

  • During the 2018-2019 season, Mr. Taylor will make his role debut in the title role in Roméo et Juliette with the Hawaii Opera Theatre.
  • He returns to Theater St. Gallen, Switzerland for a role debut as Pollione in Norma, and joins the roster of the Metropolitan Opera for Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta.
  • Concert engagements include Cassio in Otello with Austin Lyric Opera, and Don José in Carmen with the Plano Symphony Orchestra.
  • Notable engagements of recent seasons include Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly for his house debut with Oper Leipzig, Macduff in Macbeth with New Orleans Opera, a return to Theater und Konzert, St. Gallen for Cavaradossi in Tosca and Walter in Catalani’s Loreley, and a role debut as Calaf in Turandot with Virginia Opera.
  • Additional appearances include performances with Theater Würzburg, Musiktheater im Revier Gelsenkirchen, Theater Mönchengladbach, Boston Lyric Opera, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Baltimore Opera, Hawaii Opera Theater, Virginia Opera, and Manitoba Opera, among others.

George Teague

Education

  • Bachelor of Music, Cello Performance | Northern Arizona University
  • Master of Music, Cello Performance | Chicago College of Performing Arts

Background

  • Studied at the Chicago College of Performing Arts under renowned pedagogue and former Suzuki Association of the Americas President, Dr. Tanya Carey.
  • Completed his training through Book 8 in the Suzuki Method and looks forward to completing all 10 books in the next year.
  • As an accomplished performer, has held principal seats in numerous orchestras, including the CCPA Symphony and NAU Symphony Orchestra, as well a cello section member of the Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra.
  • Received numerous performing arts awards, including the Nadene Bean Cello Scholarship.
  • Enjoys performing and teaching in a variety of styles, and takes special interest in performing contemporary works for the cello.
  • Is always looking for new ways to play and teach, and enjoys the fusion of traditional and Suzuki methods, with an additional interest in making contemporary music accessible to beginners.
  • His students have won numerous regional competitions, as well as placing in regional and All-State programs.
Wisconsin Conservatory of Music String faculty member, George Teague.

Marija Temo

Chair – Guitar

Education

  • Bachelor Degree | Baldwin – Wallace College Conservatory of Music
  • Master Degree | Peabody Conservatory of Music of The John Hopkins University

Background

  • Conservatory faculty since 2015.
  • Widely recognized as a virtuoso classical and flamenco guitarist, vocalist, conductor, and former dancer.
  • Has been featured with the Baltimore and Calgary Symphonies, as well as in guitar festivals in Asunción, Paraguay, New York City, and The GFA International Guitar Festival and Competition.
  • Has had the privilege to perform for many dignitaries, such as the former Spanish Ambassador, Don Jaime de Ojeda; the former Crown Prince of Spain; and former Vice President Al Gore.
  • Had the honor of having two works for guitar and orchestra written for her, Tango Fantasy and Concierto del Fuego, by Loris Chobanian.
  • Has been a guest artist with the Zac Brown Band, provided music for a GE Capital/Taylor Guitar national television commercial, and performed in a flamenco documentary.
  • Known for her educational programs such as “Flamenco Amazement” and her “Flamenco Communication” workshop for guitarists, singers, and dancers, which was featured for 10 years in the International Festival Flamenco at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque.

Kai-i Tien

Collaborative Pianist

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts – Taipei National University of the Arts
  • Master of Music – Mannes College of Music, New York City
  • Doctor of Musical Arts, concentration in Collaborative Piano – University of Kansas

Background

  • Collaborative pianist for the Milwaukee Children’s Choir since 2015, and has taken part in the choir’s tours in California (2016), the Bahamas (2017) and New York (2018).
  • Served on the piano faculty in the Music Department at Tainan University of Technology, and Tainan Theological College and Seminary in Taiwan before moving to Milwaukee in 2014.
  • Was the pianist of the University of Kansas Symphony Orchestra from 2004-2006, and participated in the orchestra’s performance of Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring Suite and Shostokovich’s Fifth Symphony.
  • Trio performance with saxophonist Valerie Vidal and flautist Hyun-Jung Kang was broadcasted on WQAR, New York.
  • Primary teachers and musical influences were Richard Reber, Jacob Lateiner, Robert Koenig and conductor, Nicholas Uljanov.

 

Rosemary McGee Walzer

Education

  • Bachelor of Music | Heidelberg University
  • Master of Music, Instrumental Conducting | University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Background

  • Music educator and saxophonist Rosemary McGee Walzer is Director of the UWM Youth Jazz Ensemble, and Director of Bands at Maple Dale Elementary School.
  • During her time at UW-Milwaukee, she studied conducting with Dr. John Climer, saxophone with Curt Hanrahan, served as a graduate conducting associate with both the University Band and the Youth Wind Ensemble program, and assisted with the overall administration of the university band program.
  • Additionally, she served as music director for Pankratz Arts Exchange in Mount Calvary, WI for five seasons.
  • In addition to her regular teaching gigs, Rosemary has served as a guest lecturer, clinician, and music camp instructor.
  • Is a regular clinician with the Woody Herman Jazz Festival, and has been invited to work with many instrumental ensembles throughout Southeast Wisconsin.
  • As a performer, Rosemary was one of the winners of the Heidelberg University Concerto Competition in 2003, and received the Arthur Bean Award there in 2005.
  • Freelances in the Milwaukee area and has been in several instrumental ensembles, including the funk/soul band Montage, the East Side Jazz Orchestra, the Kicks Big Band, and the Milwaukee Jazz Orchestra.

Sam Winternheimer

Education

  • Bachelor Degree | Michigan State University
  • Master Degree, Jazz Studies | Florida State University

Background

  • Performs professionally in a wide variety of musical styles, as a leader and as a sideman, on upright bass and electric bass.
  • Studied with world- renowned bassist, Rodney Whitaker while at Michigan State University.
  • Studied classically with the Assistant Principal of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Robert Goodlett
  • Taught alongside Robert Goodlett at the Quattro String Academy in Indianapolis, IN.
  • Currently serves as the Bass Instructor at Eastern Illinois University.
  • As a seasoned teacher, enjoys working with students with experience ranging from beginners to professionals.

 

Lam Wong

Education

• Doctor of Musical Arts, Piano Performance and Pedagogy (in progress) | Northwestern University
• Master of Music, Piano Performance | Yale School of Music
• Bachelor of Music, Piano Performance | Manhattan School of Music

Background

  • Known for “great imagination and extraordinary musicality” (Shantou Daily) in his playing, classical pianist Lam Wong made his debut with Liszt: 12 Études d’exécution transcendante at the age of fourteen.
  • He has since appeared in concert venues in Shanghai, Hong Kong, Chicago and New York, and  has also worked with distinguished artists MarcAndré Hamelin, Mikhail Voskresensky, and performed in master classes of Boris Berman, Richard Goode, Robert Levin, Nelita True and Arie Vardi.
  • As an avid chamber musician, Wong attended and performed in chamber music festivals including Sarasota Music Festival, Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, and Manchester Music Festival.
  • As an avid chamber musician, Wong attended and performed in chamber music festivals including Sarasota Music Festival, Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, and Manchester Music Festival.
  • Also works closely with the Director of Piano Pedagogy, Dr. Marcia Bosits, at Northwestern University, where he teaches pre-college students from the Northwestern community, conducts lessons for non-major students from the university, and leads group classes at various levels.
  • Other pedagogy works also include Piano Clinics (a master class series focusing on solving pianistic problems), and specialty areas in sight-reading, a topic which he presented at the Collegiate Chapter Poster Session at the ISMTA Conference.

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