Music Education for the Community
Inspire, energize, and generate lifelong learners with a Wisconsin Conservatory of Music faculty artist at your school, early childhood center, senior center, or organization. WCM Community Partnership programs provide curriculum-based music instruction throughout southeast Wisconsin- tailored to each partner’s specific needs and goals.
In all my years as a principal, I’ve never seen students more enthusiastic about music class than with our Conservatory teachers. It’s all hands-on from the very first class.
Exceptional Music Education
for Your School or Organization
Grades: K4- 8th grade
General Music – Music Counts Curriculum
Our general music program, Music Counts, provides creative, engaging, curriculum-based classroom music education that meets state and national standards. Led by our faculty artists, Music Counts is a comprehensive music program designed to build fundamental musical skills and aims to give every child a lifelong love of music.
Music Counts is available to public, private, charter, and choice schools as a fully integrated school music program or as a supplement to existing programs.
Grades: 3rd-12th grade
Rhythm residencies focus on general music concepts and incorporate body percussion and instrumental exploration through bucket drumming. Led by our faculty artists, World Music residencies focus on the folkloric music of the African diaspora in the Caribbean. Students will discover African, Cuban, Haitian, and various cultural traditions through these programs.
Ages: 0-4 years
Early Childhood Music
Our early childhood program, SmartStart, is an engaging and playful introduction to musical concepts for our youngest students. We present programs in early childhood centers, preschools, libraries, and other organizations.
Guided by our team of faculty artists, students will explore and learn musical concepts through singing, call and response, movement, and hands on music making in an encouraging and joyful environment.
Grades: K4- 12th grade
Instrumental & Vocal Instruction
World-class faculty artists are available for private and group instruction in your school or community. Lesson schedules are planned in collaboration with your organization and instructors are chosen based on the needs and abilities of your students.
Piano | Voice | Percussion | Guitar | Strings | Brass Woodwinds | Jazz | Rock | Suzuki | Songwriting | Theory
Grades: K4- 4th grade
Students learn violin, viola, and cello from our faculty artists who are trained and certified in the Suzuki Method. The method treats music education in the same way that people learn to speak their native language; through listening, imitation, and repetition in a positive, nurturing learning environment with active parental participation.
All students will develop a solid technical foundation, tone, and musicianship skills with our highly trained Suzuki teachers.
Grades: 5th-12th grade
Help your students build team and social skills by collaborating with classmates and making new friends through music. Faculty artists from the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music direct ensemble students in choir, band, orchestra, jazz combos, rock bands, and chamber music. Programs include classroom instruction, rehearsal, and public performance opportunities.
Over 40 Community Partners in the 2022-2023 academic year:
Meet our Community Partnership Faculty Artists:
Chair – Woodwinds, Brass & PercussionPercussion, Community Partnerships, Band
- Bachelor of Music, Percussion Performance | University of Wisconsin-Parkside
- 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.
- Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance and Music Education – Lawrence University
- Joined the WCM team in 2023
- Gained a teaching license in General and Choral Music in 2021
- Has been teaching for 2 years in K-12 public education in a variety of subject areas, including General Music K4-5th Grade and Middle School Choir
- Developed Choral virtual learning tools during the 2020-21 school year
- Taught private and small group voice lessons from 2019-2021
- Roles performed include Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, Giovanna in Rigoletto and a Street Singer in Bernstein’s Mass.
- Worked as a Choral Section Leader at Neenah Presbyterian Church from 2018-2021
- Worked as a Counselor at UW-Madison’s Summer Music Clinic in 2018 and 2022
- Believes that a quality music education is a fundamental human right, as music allows us to connect with and understand ourselves and the world around us.
Jennifer Rodriguez Burke
- Bachelor of Science, Music Education | Ball State University
- Master of Arts (in progress), Flute Performance | University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
- 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.
- 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
- 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.
Bachelor of Music, Vocal Performance | Eastman School of Music in Rochester New York
- An Illinois native, dynamic soprano and music educator Elise Cismesia has extensive knowledge and dexterity in opera, art song, and musical theater.
- She is a versatile classically trained soprano with comprehensive performing experience throughout a vast milieu of works and genres from early to new music.
- During her time at Eastman, she sang in the Eastman Treble Choir, Eastman Repertory Singers, and the Eastman Chorale under the baton’s of Dr. William Wiehart and Dr. Phillip Silvey, and she has studied in the studio of renowned Mezzo- soprano and pedagogue Kathryn Cowdrick.
- In the Rochester community, Elise was the Choral Section Leader and Cantor at Church of the Ascension for three years.
- Some highlights from Elise’s time performing with the Eastman Opera Theater include the roles of “Ms. Higgins/Chorus” in Mozart’s Der Schauspieldirektor and “Featured Ensemble/Chorus” in Sondheim’s Sweeny Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.
- Notably, Elise performed in a filmed green-screened virtual production of Dominick Argento’s surrealist contemporary opera Postcard from Morocco singing the role of “Person with Old Luggage/Puppet #1/ Operetta Singer”.
- In addition to her passion for singing, Elise is a committed educator having instructed voice and piano lessons at the Allegro Dance and Music Academy in Lemont Illinois.
- She has a deep and strong enthusiasm to provide equitable, inclusive and accessible music education to all.
- In addition to being on faculty at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, Elise is a chorister in the Milwaukee Symphony Chorus.
Born in Milwaukee, Wi, Deonte is a young up-and-coming percussionist setting an example for his peers and the next generation, by trailblazing the Milwaukee music scene.
Deonte currently teaches and is a part of a few ensembles and bands, all while maintaining his own business ventures.
Deonte has been most recently involved with the Milwaukee Bucks Drumline, coaches his high school drumline at Riverside, and is the drummer for bands “Nwa Na Agbe,” and “The Urbanites,” to name a few.
- Bachelor of Science, Music Education | University of Wisconsin – La Crosse
- Master of Music, Trumpet Performance | University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee
- 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.
- Bachelor of Fine Arts in Music, Vocal Performance | University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
- Joined the Conservatory faculty in December 2021.
- Has taught singing in various forms since 2013.
- Composes and co-directs an annual musical for the West Bend Parks and Recreation Department.
- Has attended two National Association of Teacher of Singing conferences and completed the Estill Singing workshops.
- Enjoys singing at St. Paul’s Episcopal and throughout the Milwaukee community.
- Wrote a libretto for the Florentine Opera for Kids program.
Chair – Woodwinds, Brass & Percussion
- Bachelor’s Degree, Music Education, Music Performance | Ohio State University
- Master’s Degree, Music Performance | University of South Carolina
- 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.
- Bachelor’s degree in Music Performance – Butler University
- Master’s degree in Performance – University of Oklahoma (where he expanded upon his ever-growing musical repertoire with Doctor Anthony Stoops)
- Alec’s first private teacher was Laura Snyder, a prominent bassist in the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, with whom he studied in high school in Brookfield, Wisconsin
- Studied under Professor David Murray, internationally renowned solo bassist and educator
- Joined WCM in 2023
- Alec Henry is a multifaceted bassist and teacher
- Born and raised in West Allis, Wisconsin, he is currently an instructor for the Connections program at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
- He also maintains a private studio for various string students throughout Southeastern Wisconsin
- Before settling down again in Milwaukee, Alec was the String Bass Graduate Assistant at the University of Oklahoma
- He played in various local orchestras throughout the Midwest, serving as principal bass in both the Hendricks Symphony Orchestra and Philharmonic Orchestra of Indianapolis
- During his youth, Alec spent eight years with the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra
- His Indiana summers were spent teaching for the various youth music camps led by the Butler Community Arts School on campus
- Specifically, Alec specializes in the teaching and performance of 21st Century solo bass literature, euro-classical music, and modern jazz compositions on both the upright and electric bass.
- In addition to his teaching at the Wisconsin Conservatory, Alec likes to stay involved with the string bass community by attending the biannual International Society of Bassists Conventions as well as volunteering with the Richard Davis Foundation for Young Bassists in Madison, Wisconsin
Born in Albuquerque NM, Freya Irani began to play the violin at age 4 and the viola at the age of 13. Her string quartet at the New England Conservatory garnered recognition as a 2017-18 Honors Ensemble, where they made their Jordan Hall recital debut in May 2018. Additionally, as a chamber musician, she won the Bronze Medal at the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition Junior Division 2016, the 2nd Prize Laureate in the inaugural M-Prize Chamber Music Competition Junior Division 2016, and 2nd place at the A.N. and Pearl G. Barnett Chamber Competition with Quartet Vibrante. With Quartet Étoile, she has been named the Overall Winner and Strings and Piano category winner of the 2015 Midwest Young Artist’s Discover National Chamber Competition. She has also won 1st place at the Rembrandt Chamber Players High School Chamber Music Competition and has received recognition as a Rembrandt Young Artist 2015. In addition, her group placed as a Semifinalist in the Junior Division of the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition 2015 and got invited to perform at Pianoforte’s “Playful Talk” with pianist Yana Reznik. They performed as guest artists with the Northbrook Symphony in their 2015-16 season.
She has been named a 2017 National YoungArts Honorable Mention Winner. As a soloist, she has received honorable mention from the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra Stars of Tommorrow Competition, MSO Bolz Young Artist Competition, and the WCO Young Artists Competition, and has been named a High School Showcase Scholarship Award Winner in the Civic Music Association of Milwaukee Competition of 2015.
Freya has had the honor to concertize in esteemed venues such as Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, Lincoln Center, Northwestern University’s Pick Staiger Hall, Ravinia’s Bennett Gordon Hall, New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall, and Chicago’s PianoForte Studios, among others. She has been privileged to participate in masterclasses with Ettore Causa, Robert deMaine, Yizhak Schotten, Helen Callus, Tom Rosenberg, Stephen Wyrczynski, Peter Slowik, James Dunham, and the Ying Quartet. Additionally, she has received instruction from members of the Cleveland, Orpheus, Ariel, Borromeo, Parker, Dover, Cavani, Tokyo, and Vermeer Quartets. Her greatest inspiration outside of music is nature and the outdoors. She has performed in the Czech Republic, Mexico, United States, and Germany. Freya completed her Bachelor of Music degree with Prof. Hartmut Rohde at the University of Arts in Berlin.
Currently, Freya is a violist with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, among other orchestras. She believes that being involved in musical communities brings joy to young people’s lives, allowing them to express themselves, make close friends, and form lasting connections. Learning music at a young age provides children with experiences they will never forget. It also teaches vital life skills such as self-discipline, collaboration, and dedication.
- Bachelor of Music, Piano Performance | St. Olaf College
- Master of Music, Piano Performance/Pedagogy | University of Wisconsin-Madison
- 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.
- Bachelor of Science, Psychology (Summa Cum Laude) | University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee
- Sofia has been playing the harp since she was six years old.
- She achieved several music honors and awards in high school, such as earning first place in the senior division of the Northern Illinois University Community School Talent Scholarship, and playing as principal harpist for the ILMEA Honors All-State Band in 2017.
- Despite her success in music, she chose to complete a psychology degree over a music degree with the goal of becoming a clinical psychologist, while taking harp lessons at UWM and playing for various UWM ensembles to build her repertoire.
- Sofia worked as a Child Research Technician for the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) Study at UWM, and authored two publications for research in working memory appearing in Biological Psychology (2021) and Frontiers in Psychology (2022).
- Since graduating, she has been focusing on returning to her musical, creative roots by working towards making harp music, and music education in general, more accessible to her community.
- Sofia is thrilled to join the WCM team and the Smart Start program, fulfilling her background in cognitive neuroscience and passion for promoting music accessibility.
- Bachelor of Music | Indiana University
- Master of Music | University of Michigan
- 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.
- St. Francis Xavier University (Nova Scotia)
- A Cappella, Vocal Jazz | Phil Mattson’s School for Music Vocations (Iowa)
- Elizabeth Notestine is a vocalist with an eclectic set of experiences that shapes how she approaches music.
- Played with the Creative Music Lab Ensemble, headed by her late mentor Jerry Granelli.
- Practices mindfulness as a form of honest discipline, and deepens the relationship to her craft.
- Elizabeth began sharing her passion by being a music teacher while she continued to perform and tour.
- Elizabeth has lived in both Chicago and Los Angeles exploring the creative process as an actor.
- She is proud to not only pass on the traditions of music like jazz, but also to inspire curiosity and joy through learning it.
- Doctor of Musical Arts, Trombone Performance | Arizona State University
- Emmy Rozanski is an enthusiastic music educator and active freelance trombonist in the Milwaukee and Chicago areas.
- Adjunct music faculty at Alverno College, teaching artist for Sistema Ravinia, and low brass instructor at Highland Park High School.
- Traveled to El Salvador in the summers of 2019 and 2018 as a teaching artist with MusAid, leading classes in technique and ensemble skills, as well as teaching private lessons.
- Currently the principal trombonist for the Skokie Valley Symphony Orchestra (Skokie, IL) and has recently performed with the International Women’s Music Festival Orchestra (Madison) Summit Brass (Denver), the Powder River Symphony (Wyoming), and the Billings Symphony (Montana).
- Toured Switzerland performing with the Arizona Contemporary Music Ensemble.
- She is researching motivation and growth mindset as they pertain to musicians and educators and presented on these topics at the 2019 International Trombone Festival and International Women’s Brass Conference.
- As part of her doctoral project she wrote and illustrated a children’s book about the trombone, Mr. Fitch Joins the Band.
- Bachelor’s in Music Performance | Crane School of Music
- Master’s in Music Performance | University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee
- 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.
- Bachelor of Arts, Music Performance and Mathematics | University of Wisconsin – Madison
- Master of Music, Music Performance | Northwestern University
- 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).
Felipe Rocha Luiz Vianna
- Bachelor of Music in Viola Performance – Universidade Federal de Pernambuco (UFPE)
- Master of Music in Viola Performance – Louisiana State University (LSU)
- Born in Vassouras/RJ – Brazil, Felipe Vianna started his music studies at PIM – Programa de Integração pela Música, a social project based on El-Sistema Music Education, having violin lessons with Daniel Andrade, and participating actively in Suzuki masterclasses with Suray Soren Doyle and Paulo Bosisio. Later, became violin, viola, and music theory teacher at the project from 2007 to 2009.
- After migrating to viola, pursued his studies at Federal University of Pernambuco, where played actively as principal and section viola at UFPE Symphony Orchestra and “Sonoro Ofício”, a historically informed chamber orchestra, from 2010 to 2016.
- Finalist at Paulo Bosisio National String Competition in Juiz de Fora/ MG – Brazil, adult division in 2013.
- Co-principal viola at Orquestra Sinfônica da Paraíba, in João Pessoa/PB – Brazil, during 2015 season.
- Received the Graduate School Tuition Award (GSTA) from Louisiana State University in 2017.
- Worked as violin and viola teacher at Kid’s Orchestra in Baton Rouge, academic year 2019-2020.
- Major viola professors (in chronological order): Dr. Savio Santoro (UFPE), Dr. Elias Goldstein (LSU) and Paul Cortese.
- Participated in festivals in Brazil, US, and Italy, under the tutelage of many great violists, such as Emmerson diBiaggi, Leonardo Piermartini, Carlos Aleixo, Marcelo Jaffé, Alexandre Razera, Gabriel Marin, Nobuko Imai, Bruno Giuranna, Carol Rodland, Michelle LaCourse, Phillip Ying, Paul Newbauer, Raimi Solomonov, Karen Dreyfous, Susan Dubois, Wenting Kang, Hella Frank, Daphne Gerling and Glêsse Collet.