Music Department Head - Mellasenah Indira EdwardsMellasenah Indira Edwards received undergraduate and graduate degrees in performance from the Eastman School of Music, the Yale School of Music, and the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University. Her teachers have included Isidor Saslav, Peter Salaff, Syoko Aki, Sylvia Rosenberg, and Shirley Givens. She served as a teaching assistant in the string department while studying at Yale and as teaching assistant to Shirley Givens at the Peabody Conservatory. Dr. Edwards has appeared nationally as soloist and recitalist, and has been a member of the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, the Aspen Music Festival Orchestra, and the Spartanburg Philharmonic. She appeared with the Ritz Chamber Players in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall and has performed with such festivals as the Shenandoah Valley Bach Festival, the Gateways Music Festival, the Contemporary Music Theatre Festival, the Spoleto Festival, and the Amelia Island Festival. Her performances have been broadcast on National Public Radio and on WNYC in New York City. She has served on the faculty at the Petrie School of Music of Converse College and as Music Department Chair and Violin Instructor at the South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities. She has been an adjudicator at numerous pre-college and college level music competitions, a clinician at conferences sponsored by the South Carolina Music Teachers Association, and a panelist on forums on the arts. Currently Dr. Edwards is also an associate member of the Columbus Symphony Orchestra- Columbus, Ohio- a member of Ensemble Argos, performs regularly as a sub with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, and serves on the faculty at the Peabody Preparatory and the Baltimore School for the Arts.
Brass Instructor and Ensemble Director - Milton AldanaMilton Aldana received his music degrees from the University of Texas at El Paso and the University of Northern Colorado. He has played with groups such as the Maryland, Soulful, and Lancaster Symphony Orchestras, Baltimore Opera Company, and the Handel Choir of Baltimore. He recently was a co-presenter at the Eastern Trombone Workshop in Washington, DC and performed in Salt Lake City with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir at the International Trombone Festival in a live international TV broadcast this past summer.
Instructor, French Horn - Karen BakkegardKaren Moats Bakkegard has been performing as a freelance hornist in the Baltimore-Washington area since moving here in 1978. She is a member of the Baltimore Opera Orchestra and the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra. In addition to many other organizations, she has performed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra, the Washington Opera, the Maryland Symphony and the Delaware Symphony. Karen graduated with a B.A. in French Horn Performance from California State University, Fresno, where she studied with James H. Winter. She also studied with Paul Anderson while attending the University of Iowa as a graduate student in Music Theory. Other studies include work with Sylvia Alimena, Barry Tuckwell, and Dale Clevenger. In the past, Karen has taught at St. Mary's College, Essex Community College, and Shepherd College. Currently, in addition to her work at Goucher, Karen teaches at the Baltimore School for the Arts.
Instructor, Violin/Viola - Karin Brown
Violin/Viola Instructor - Katarzyna BrylaStudying under full scholarship, Katarzyna Bryla has received three degrees from the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University – a Graduate Performance Diploma in 2005, a Graduate Performance Diploma in Chamber Music in 2008, and an Artists Diploma in 2011, having previously earned Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in Poznan, Poland. Her teachers have included Herbert Greenberg, Christian Tetzlaff, David Cerutti, Bartosz Bryla and Jadwiga Kaliszewska. Bryla’s orchestral work in the United States currently includes regular appearances with the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s in New York and, most recently, as Principal Second Violin of the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra. Bryla performed “Fall” and “Winter” from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons with the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra in April 2013, was soloist with the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra in their tour of China in 2010, and was soloist for the noted Maazel/Vilar Conducting Competition in 2001. Bryla is a member of the Tallis String Quartet as well as the Lunar Ensemble, and has frequently been a guest member of the Monument Piano Trio, Midnight Moon Ensemble, Baltimore Symphony Chamber Music Groups. Katarzyna Bryla has performed in numerous renowned music festivals including Music@Menlo, the Cactus Pear Music Festival in San Antonio, TX, Bach Dancing and Dynamite in Madison, WI, the Singapore Sun Music Festival, the Las Palmas Music Festival in Grand Canary Island, Spain, the Darlowo International Music Festival in Poland and numerous festivals in Poland. Among the outstanding musicians with whom she has performed are Martin Chalifour, Ellen dePasquale, Stephanie Sant’Ambrogio, Carmit Zori, Anthony Ross, Beth Rapier Ross, and Fred Edelen.
MIDI/Electronic Music - Benjamin Buchanan
Described by the three-time Nobel Prize nominated poet Yevgeny A. Yevtushenko as a “most quickly enflaming young composer,” Benjamin Buchanan (b. 1989) is pursuing master of music degrees in music theory pedagogy and in composition at the Peabody Conservatory, where he studies with Michael Hersch. Buchanan has performed with a variety of illustrious artists including Paul Stookey, Tim Ries, Patti Page, Conrad Herwig, and the three-time Nobel Prize nominee Yevtushenko. While working closely with Yevtushenko to organize a performance of poetry and music, Buchanan started composing at the request of the unparalleled poet, and found new musical passion in the art of composition. His musical style fits in somewhere between where Beethoven meets burlesque and where startling, avant-garde drama gives way to rambunctious joy. His jazz trio, The Buchanan, Robbins, and Drumm Group, which Buchanan is co-founder of, and pianist for, recorded their debut album Bad Bromance in February of 2012. Considered an excompatriot of the new school of the post-neo-avant-garde futurists, Buchanan can be seen performing as a beatboxing toy instrumentalist and performance artist in and around the Greater Baltimore and Washington, DC, areas. Benjamin has a bachelor's of music in piano performance from the University of Tulsa. In addition to teaching at Baltimore School for the Arts, he is the organ scholar at the historic Old St. Paul's Episcopal Church and has served as a faculty associate at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University. For more information, please visit www.bbcomposer.com.
Instructor, Voice - Robert CantrellRobert Cantrell, bass-baritone, has been described by the Washington Post critic Joseph McLellan as “a warm supple voice that brought out the lyrical intentions of the composers making them treasured moments.” Cantrell’s 2008-2009 season highlights included the role of Gubetta in Donizetti’s Lucrezia Borgia starring Renée Fleming at Washington National Opera; bass soloist in Handel’s Israel in Egypt with Baltimore Choral Arts; role of the Bishop in Menotti’s Death of the Bishop of Brindisi (reviewer from the Baltimore Sun, Arundel, wrote “Bass-baritone Robert Cantrell possesses a resonant , warm voice and strong acting skills to give a fully dimensional portrait of the Bishop”) and Amahl and the Night Visitors with Ann Arundel Community College; bass soloist in Duruflé’s Requiem with the Handel Choir of Baltimore. He sang with the Metropolitan Opera Chorus in the Met’s 125th Opera Gala. Other solo appearances included Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with AACC, Vaughan William’s Five Mystical Songs with the Johns Hopkins Choral Society, and Mendelssohn’s Elijah with Columbia Presbyterian Church. The Reading Eagle wrote of The Reading Symphony Orchestra’s 4th of July Star Spangled Spectacular: “Extraordinary Bass-Baritone Robert Cantrell’s sumptuous voice, endless breath control and moving delivery swept everyone away.” His 2009-2010 season highlights include recitals on the CCBC Casual Concert Series, Elijah with the Central Maryland Chorale, and the Opera Gala with the Hopkins Symphony Orchestra. He will appear in performances of Porgy and Bess with Washington National Opera, singing the role of Jim. Mr. Cantrell is on the voice faculty at the Baltimore School for the Arts and is bass soloist at Grace United Methodist Church.
Instructor, Violin - Jonathan Carney
Instructor, Voice & French Diction Teacher - Janice Chandler-Eteme
Instructor, Clarinet - David Drosinos
David Drosinos received his diploma from the Peabody Conservatory of Music. He studied clarinet with Loren Kitt, principal clarinetist with the National Symphony Orchestra. Drosinos won the Sidney Jensen Memorial Award for outstanding clarinet performance and has been guest artist at the Greek Embassy in Washington, DC, and the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City. The Washington Post praised him as "playing with an unusually smooth and agile touch." On The Finzi Clarinet Concerto, The Baltimore Sun noted: “He played the idyllic score with technical security, tonal warmth and exceptionally eloquent phrasing.” Drosinos' performance of the Copland Concerto was unmatched by any in Baltimore. The Baltimore Sun said, “Copland’s Clarinet Concerto had a confident and dynamic protagonist in David Drosinos. He spun the lyrical lines with considerable warmth.” Drosinos was the principal clarinetist and soloist with the Peabody Symphony Orchestra on their tour to Russia, and a featured soloist with the Concert Artist of Baltimore. He has performed in Greece, Ireland, Moscow, Finland, the Bahamas, and all over the continental United States. His Greek Band Zephyros was a featured act at the International Clarinet Association in Washington, DC. Drosinos is a versatile and seasoned clarinetist who has enchanted audiences from Maryland to Moscow. Drosinos resides in Cockeysville, MD, and is in much demand with performing groups in the Greater Baltimore-Washington area. He teaches at Shepherd University, the Baltimore School for the Arts, and the Peabody Preparatory. Visit his website for more information: www.daviddrosinos.com.
Instructor, Cello - Gretchen GettesCellist Gretchen Gettes earned an undergraduate degree from Duke University and a Masters of Music degree in cello performance from USC where she studied with Lynn Harrell. She was a member of the Pacific Northwest Ballet Orchestra for six years, and in addition to performing the Nutcracker over 130 times, played on numerous film soundtracks and commercials. Gretchen freelances in the Baltimore/Washington area and is a member of the Gliss ensemble and the band, Maycat. She teaches privately and is on the faculty at Goucher College, Peabody Preparatory, and Baltimore School for the Arts.
Instructor/Accompanist - Allen Good
Pianist Allen Good received his early musical training in Jacksonville, Florida, where he studied with Natalie Szelwinska. He graduated from the Peabody Conservatory of Music in 1978 with the degree of master of music. He has been a member of the BSA Dance and Music departments since 1979. Good has served as company pianist for the Baltimore Ballet and has been master class pianist for such noted teachers as Violette Verdy, Jean-Pierre Bonnefous, Melissa Hayden, Edward Villella, and Michael Maul. He has been active in the Baltimore-Washington area as soloist, chamber musician, dance accompanist, and teacher. A number of his students have won prizes in local and regional competitions. Currently, he teaches piano, music theory, keyboard skills, and piano literature at BSA. In addition to his musical activities, Good holds a certificate in accounting from the University of Baltimore.
Instructor, Saxophone - Tim Green
In 2007, Green earned his Masters in Jazz Studies from the University of Southern California’s Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, where he came under the guiding lights of legends like Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, and Terence Blanchard. After graduating from the Monk Institute, Green returned to his native Baltimore, where he is a key component of the city’s burgeoning jazz community.
Green has performed with a wide range of artists including Roy Hargrove, Jon Faddis, Hubert Laws, Kenny Burrell, Patrice Rushen, Queen Latifah, Joe Chambers, Sean Jones, and Wynton Marsalis. He is also a member of the 75-piece Soulful Symphony, founded by conductor Darin Atwater, which recently undertook a residency at Baltimore’s Meyerhoff Symphony Hall.
In recent years Green has begun to mentor a younger generation in his native city, serving as the saxophone professor at Morgan State University and teaching at his alma mater, the Baltimore School for the Arts.
Instructor, Bassoon - Julie Gregorian
Director of Choral Activities and Coordinator of Music Theory Programs - Dr. Mark Hardy
Mark Hardy is the Director of Choral activities at the nationally acclaimed Baltimore School for the Arts. The BSFA choirs have appeared with The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Baltimore Lyric Opera, The Hopkins Symphony Orchestra, The Spire series, The Bach in Baltimore Concerts, the Candlelight concert series, and the Shriver Hall Concert series. Since arriving in Baltimore in 1999, he has been the Conductor of the Johns Hopkins Choral Society, the founding director of the Baltimore Masterworks Chorale, chorus master for the Annapolis Opera and music director for Epiphany Episcopal Church. Dr. Hardy has served on the faculty of the Lyric Opera camp and the Pennsylvania Arts Institute. A native of Boston, Dr. Hardy holds a B.M. in composition from the University of Lowell, and masters and doctoral degrees in choral conducting from Indiana University Dr. Hardy. He also remains active as a composer of choral, chamber, and orchestral music and his music is published by Cantate Press.
Instructor, Violin and Viola - Rebecca Henry
Accompanist - Choo Choo Hu
Choo Choo Hu has performed across the United States from New York to Los Angeles and a host of places in between, as well as in parts of Europe and Asia. Although she enjoys an active career as a soloist, Hu is also a passionate chamber musician. She has worked with members of the Brentano, Tokyo, and Jupiter String Quartets. Recent performances include collaborations with the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, musicians of the Baltimore Symphony, the JHU Choral Society, and appearances at the Strathmore Mansion, the TEDx MidAtlantic Conference, and TEDMED 2013 at the Kennedy Center. An avid proponent of contemporary music, Hu is a member of the Sonar New Music Ensemble, a Baltimore-based group dedicated to promoting music written within the last century and premiering works by up-and-coming young composers.
Born in China and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, Hu began taking lessons at the age of five with pianist John (Yiqiang) Sun. By the time she was 16, she had already accumulated top prizes at competitions throughout the country such as the Missouri Southern International Piano Competition, the Biennial Lee Competition, the Washington University Young Artists Concerto Competition, and the St. Louis Symphony Youth Concerto Competition. At age 17, she enrolled at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore to pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in piano performance, studying with renowned musicians Brian Ganz and Leon Fleisher. While at Peabody, Hu was the recipient of the Albert and Rosa Silverman Memorial Scholarship, the Yale Gordon Chamber Music Fellowship, and the Grace Clagett Ranney Prize in Chamber Music.
Instructor, Harpsichord - Bozena Jedrzejczak Brown
Bozena Jedrzejczak Brown holds a master's degree in harpsichord performance (2000) from the Peabody Institute, in the studio of Webb Wiggins. She also studied harpsichord at Northern Illinois University, earning an individualized master's degree (1998), and received a B.M. in music theory (1991) from the Frederic Chopin Music University in Warsaw, Poland. She teaches harpsichord and rudiments of figured bass at the Baltimore School for the Arts, and is a faculty member of the Music and Arts Department at Garrison Forest School in Owings Mills, MD. Brown freelances as a continuo player on harpsichord and chamber organ, and has performed with many groups in the Mid-Atlantic region, including Washington Cornett and Sackbut Ensemble, Orchestra of the 17th Century, Richmond Symphony Orchestra, Mid-Atlantic Symphony, Bach Concert Series Orchestra, Washington’s Camerata, and others.
Instructor, Voice - Lori Hultgren
Instructor, Music Theory - Jason Kissel
Instructor, Oboe & Chamber Music - Sandra Gerster Lisicky
Instructor, Percussion - John Locke
Accompanist - Mellasenah Y. Morris
Mellasenah Morris, former Dean of the Peabody Conservatory and Deputy Director of the Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University, earned a Bachelor of Music Degree in Performance, a Master of Music Degree in Piano Pedagogy and a Doctor of Musical Arts Degrees in Piano Performance at the same institution. During her student years at Peabody, she studied with Julio Esteban and performed in master classes with such renowned artists as Leon Fleisher, Irvin Freundlich, Fernando Laires, and David Burge. She also has received coachings from Ann Schein and William Bolcom.
Dr. Morris gave a debut recital at Carnegie Recital Hall. Since that time, her performances have included solo and lecture recitals throughout the east coast and mid-west, as well as at St. Martin-in-the Fields, London, England; and, numerous appearances as an accompanist and chamber music performer, specializing in contemporary music. She has appeared as soloist with such ensembles as the Atlanta University Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, Maryland Women’s Symphony Orchestra, and the James Madison University Wind Symphony and Symphony Orchestra and The Ohio State University Orchestra.
Along with a varied performing career, Dr. Morris has enjoyed several academic appointments, including service on the faculty of the Peabody Conservatory. Her administrative appointments have included that of Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs at the Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University, Dean of the School of Music at Alabama State University, Director of the School of Music at James Madison University, and most recently, Director of the School of Music at The Ohio State University. In each of the universities in which she served, she held the rank of full professor of piano.
Dr. Morris has been an active participant in the National Association of Schools of Music. At the annual meetings, she has served on panelist, moderator, and presenter for numerous sessions. She has been a team member and team chair for many accreditation visits. Other service has included membership on the Nominating Committee, and she was on the Commission on Accreditation for four years. She became treasurer and a member of the Executive Committee and Executive Board in 2004. Her most recent scholarly pursuits have included of a biographical sketch on American composer Florence Price for Carlson Publications and pedagogical presentations for various chapters of Music Educators Association on intermediate level French piano repertoire. Dr. Morris has served on the Friends Board of WOSU Public Media and on the Board of the Columbus Symphony Orchestra. Currently, she is on the board of the Community Concerts at Second Presbyterian and is a member of the Governing Board of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
Instructor- Violin - Greg Mulligan
Born into a musical family, Greg Mulligan began studying violin at age eight. His siblings, a younger brother and two sisters, also play string instruments, leading to the creation of a family string quartet. Mulligan received his bachelor of music degree from the Eastman School of Music and master of music degree from Indiana University, where he studied with Josef Gingold.
Mulligan returned to the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at the beginning of the 1994-95 season after having served as concertmaster of the San Antonio Symphony from 1989 through 1994. From 1990 to 1991, he was concertmaster of the Colorado Music Festival. Before moving to San Antonio, Mulligan had been a member of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra's first violin section for nine years. Other orchestras to his credit include the St. Louis Symphony, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, the Grand Teton Music Festival, and the Buffalo Philharmonic.
Since 1995, audiences have enjoyed listening to performances of Mulligan with the Atlantic String Quartet, of which he is a founding member. The quartet, with French hornist Peter Landgren, has recorded the Mozart Horn Concertos. Mulligan also performs regularly with Pro Musica Rara, the Baltimore early music ensemble. He performs on a violin made in 1735 by Gennaro Gagliano in Naples, Italy.
Instructor, Classical Guitar - Kathrin MurrayA seasoned performer and teacher, guitarist Kathrin Murray, is a passionately committed performer with the ability to transparently present music as having a "life of its own" with "beautiful tone" (The Washington Guitar Society). Born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, at 9 years old she was invited to join a professional ukulele ensemble. Since beginning to play the guitar at age 15, she has become a dedicated performer and teacher based in Baltimore, MD. Ms. Murray has performed in the United States and Europe, and has been featured as a guest artist at the Bethlehem Guitar Festival, the Charlton Kings International Guitar Festival (England), on the BBC, and at the Dutch and Finish Embassies in Washington, DC. Recent performances have taken her to Mendocino, CA, Bethlehem, PA, Fairfax, Virginia, Washington, DC, Honolulu, Hawaii, Portland and Brunswick, Maine and the Shenandoah Conservatory in Virginia. She has won the Rising Stars Recital Competition and has received the Levine Faculty Development Grant, the Peabody Career Development Grant, the Bowdoin Summer Music Festival's Perfoming Associate Award, and has been a three-time recipient of the Levine Performance Grant. Recently, she received a 2008 Maryland State Arts Council Grant for her debut solo recording, “Arabesques”, which was released in Spring of 2008 on the Centaur Record Label. Ms. Murray has served on the guitar faculties of Frederick Community College, Towson University, Mount Saint Mary’s College, and the Levine School of Music. Currently she heads the classical guitar studies at McDaniel College in Westminster, MD and teaches at Baltimore School for the Arts and the Bryn Mawr School in Baltimore. Ms. Murray received a bachelor’s degree from the Lamont School of Music of the University of Denver, where she was a scholarship student of the renowned guitarist and pedagogue, Ricardo Iznaola, and a Master’s Degree from the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University, where she studied with Julian Gray. She has also studied at the Bowdoin Summer Music Festival and privately with composer Gilbert Biberian in England.
Instructor, Flute - Sara NicholsMs. Nichols enjoys a diverse career as a teacher, soloist, chamber musician and orchestral musician. She performed as Principal Flute of the Baltimore Opera Orchestra for twenty two seasons, and has also appeared as a soloist and an orchestral musician with numerous ensembles including the National Gallery Orchestra, the Wolf Trap Orchestra, the Baltimore Choral Arts Society, Res Musica, Pro Musica Rara , the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, and the Opera Theatre of St. Louis. International appearances include the Amalfi Coast Music and Arts Festival (Italy), the Miedzynarodowy Festival (Poland), the Mainly Mozart Music Festival (Mexico), and the St. Petersburg Conservatory (Russia). She can be heard in the Wolf Trap Opera Company’s recording of Volpone by John Musto, which was recently nominated for a Grammy award. Ms. Nichols is a member of the faculties at the Baltimore School for the Arts and Towson University, where she was a recipient of the Dean’s Recognition Award for Excellence in Teaching. Her high school students have achieved numerous awards, including the National Flute Association High School Flute Choir Competitions; the Flute Society of Washington Mid-Atlantic Flute Fair Honors Competitions, Master Class and High School Flute Choir Competitions; Maryland Distinguished Scholars in the Arts; principal and section positions in All Eastern and All State Bands and Orchestras; and concerto competition winners who have performed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, U.S. Navy Band, U.S. Naval Academy Band, and the Greater Baltimore Youth Orchestra.
Instructor, Harp - Jacqueline PollaufAmerican harpist Jacqueline Pollauf is a dynamic young performer with musical sensitivity and maturity beyond her years. Praised for playing with “glittering beauty” (Lawrence Budman, critic for the Miami Herald) and a “steady and most satisfying elegance” (The Toledo Blade), Jacqueline made her solo debut at age sixteen with the Perrysburg Symphony Orchestra. She performs frequently as a soloist and released her first solo album, Bouquet, in 2009. Jacqueline seeks to explore and expand not only the role of classical music in society, but also the perception and capabilities of the harp. As part of this mission, Jacqueline is a member of Pictures on Silence, a duo with saxophonist Dr. Noah Getz. Dedicated to excellence in performance, the ensemble has an ever-increasing repertoire driven by commissions and transcriptions. Jacqueline is on the faculties of the University of Maryland at Baltimore County and the Baltimore School for the Arts. She holds Master and Bachelor of Music degrees from the Peabody Conservatory where she studied with Ruth K. Inglefield.
Instructor, Double Bass / Music Theory - Laura Ruas
Laura Ruas, double bassist, has developed a prominent role in music performance and is a tireless educator in the Maryland arts community. As a freelance bassist she is a frequent solo, recital and chamber musician whose musical interests and abilities extend outside of classical to Tango and Afro Cuban jazz idioms.
She holds Adjunct Professor positions with the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), Goucher College and Montgomery College. She is the double bass instructor at Baltimore School for the Arts (BSA) and maintains a private studio of students from all musical tastes and genres. She is deeply committed to bringing music to city students through the BRIDGES and BSA TWIGS programs in Baltimore, and the Kennedy Center/National Symphony Orchestra ‘In School Education’ program in Washington, DC. Additionally, Laura is the double bass coach at the Maryland Classic Youth Orchestra (MCYO) based in Strathmore Hall in Rockville, MD.
Ms. Ruas is Principal Bass of the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra; Principal Bass of Concert Artists of Baltimore; a member of the former Baltimore Opera Orchestra as well as the Martha Graham Orchestra in New York. She has regularly performed with the Harrisburg, Alabama, National and Baltimore Symphonies. In 2005, Laura was invited to join the Cabrillo Music Festival by music director Marin Alsop.
Laura was born and raised in the Bronx, NY, attended the High School of Performing Arts and received her Bachelors and Master of Music degrees from The Juilliard School where she studied with the renowned bass pedagogue, Homer Mensch.
Instructor, Voice - Norwood Robinson
Accompanist - Michael Sheppard
Michael Sheppard trained at the Peabody Conservatory, studying with Leon Fleischer and Ann Schein. He is currently the pianist for the graduate conducting program at Peabody and maintains a busy concert schedule performing as a soloist and as an accompanist. Sheppard has been a fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center and the La Gesse Foundation, as well as a classical fellow of the American Pianists Association. His recently released album of contemporary American music for the Harmonia Mundi label has been getting rave reviews.
Instructor, Violin & Chamber Music - Ivan Stefanovic
Ivan Stefanovic was born in Belgrade, former Yugoslavia, and began his violin studies at the age of five. At 16, he came to the United States to continue his education at the Cleveland Institute of Music (CIM), where he studied with David Cerone, Victor Danchenko, David Updegraff, and Cathleen Winkler. He earned a bachelor of music degree in 1989 and an artist diploma in 1991, both with honors, from the CIM. In 2003, the CIM awarded him an Alumni Achievement Award "in recognition of outstanding accomplishments in the fields of violin orchestral and chamber music performance."
Stefanovic joined the second violin section of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in 1991 under David Zinman, moving up to a third chair position a year later. In 2004, Yuri Temirkanov named him assistant principal second violin. He was named associate principal second violin by Marin Alsop in 2012.
As a soloist and chamber musician, Stefanovic has won many first prizes in local and national competitions in Yugoslavia. He has performed numerous times as a soloist with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Symphony Orchestra of Radio and TV Belgrade, and the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra. He has made live recordings for Radio and TV Belgrade, Radio Yugoslavia, and WCLV in Cleveland, in addition to numerous solo and chamber music recitals in Yugoslavia, Spain, and the United States.
Stefanovic is principal second violin of the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, a baroque violinist in Pro Musica Rara, and a co-founder and co-artistic director of "Chamber Music by Candlelight," a series featuring BSO members. He is a violin teacher and a chamber music coach, and conducts orchestra sectionals at both the Preparatory Department of the Peabody Conservatory of Music and the Baltimore School for the Arts. He has conducted master classes in the United States and Japan, and is a member of the Clipper Mill Quartet. At the invitation of their respective music directors, Ivan has served numerous times as guest concertmaster with the Ft. Wayne Philharmonic and Symphony Orchestra Augusta (GA). He has served on the faculty as a coach and a conductor at Apple Hill Center for Chamber Music, Peabody Utah Summer Music Festival and School, and Peabody Chamber Week. He was chosen to be a member of the All-Star Orchestra, comprised of some of the best orchestral players in the country, in a PBS taping in August of 2014.
Instructor- Cello - Troy Stuart
Troy Stuart, cellist, is a Baltimore native and a graduate of the Baltimore School for the Arts, the Oberlin Conservatory and the Peabody Conservatory. Mr. Stuart was chosen to be a member of the prestigious New York String Orchestra, under the direction of famed violinist/conductor Alexander Schneider. He has performed chamber music with such notables as Isaac Stern, Jaime Laredo, Pamela Frank, and Paul Badura-Skoda. Mr. Stuart has also participated in internationally televised (CBS) Kennedy Center Honors honoring Alexander Schneider. Has was presented with the Martell Cordon Bleu Award by actor/musician Dudley Moore.
Jazz Band & Combo Director - John Thomas
John Thomas is a saxophonist with an active career as both a teacher and performer. He earned a B.M. in Jazz Studies at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and completed a double M.M. in Jazz Studies and Saxophone Performance at East Carolina University.
As a jazz musician, Mr. Thomas was a featured soloist with the award winning UNC Jazz Lab Band I, backing up such artists as Bob Mintzer, Kevin Mahogany, and Slide Hampton. His diverse career as a performer includes appearances with the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra, Glen Miller Orchestra, North Carolina Symphony, and the Temptations .
In the Baltimore area, Mr. Thomas is a busy freelance performer and can be seen with many of the areas top jazz and pop groups, as well as with his own jazz quartet.
Mr. Thomas has previously held teaching positions at East Carolina University, the University of Northern Colorado, Colorado Christian University, and was the Woodwinds Coordinator and Director of Jazz Studies at Casper College in Casper, Wyoming. Currently, Mr. Thomas is pursuing a doctoral degree in saxophone performance at the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University.
Accompanist - Rebecca Jones Trout
Rebecca Jones Trout began her musical studies under her mother’s tutelage at the age of three. Ms. Trout received her B.A. cum laude from the College of Notre Dame of Maryland and her M.M. from The Peabody Conservatory of Music of the Johns Hopkins University, where she was the recipient of a full graduate assistantship in accompanying. She has accompanied numerous art song and instrumental recitals in the Baltimore-Washington area. Ms. Trout has appeared as guest soloist with the Columbia Symphony Orchestra, as a duo pianist with Mr. Jeffrey Winfield and as a guest accompanist with the U.S. Army Field Band Chamber Concert Series. She, for eleven years was one of the three resident accompanists of noted Explorations in Singing Workshop conducted by Thomas Houser and Ruth Drucker. She is also the resident accompanist for the Wunderlic Art Song Competition in Baltimore. Ms. Trout is presently on the faculty at The Baltimore School for the Arts, a by audition only public arts school in Baltimore City, where she has served as the assistant conductor of the choruses, and presently as a vocal and instrumental coach, and pianist/accompanist. In addition to her work at the school, Ms. Trout maintains a music studio at home where she teaches piano and voice and coaches professional singers. Ms. Trout has also sung in many choirs as a professional chorister and soloist in the Baltimore area. After studying voice seriously with Mary Ruzicka Crook for the past five years, she, with her teacher’s encouragement, has decided to embark on this new aspect of her musical career. In the summer of 2007, Ms. Trout performed with the Baltimore Choral Arts Society on their tour of France as the mezzo-soprano soloist in the Mozart Requiem. Ms. Trout is a chorister and soloist in The Christ Lutheran Church Choir at the Harbor.
Instructor - Kelli A YoungA native of Washington, D.C., Kelli A. Young graduated from the Duke Ellington School of the Arts. She earned her undergraduate degree in vocal performance from the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, Maryland. Following graduation from Peabody, Ms. Young was awarded the Syracuse University African-American Fellowship which enabled her to pursue graduate studies. Ms. Young has been a featured soloist and recitalist both in the United States and abroad, performing New York City, Syracuse New York, the Baltimore Washington, D.C. area, Augusta Georgia, Nice, France Cologne Germany, and Graz Austria where she also attended the American Institute of Musical Studies. She has collaborated with and sung for such greats as composer conductor Marvin Hamlisch, gospel recording artist, Richard Smallwood and Grammy award winning jazz vocalist, Bobby Mc Ferrin. Recently performed operatic roles include: Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi, Pamina in Die Zauberflote, Despina in Cosi fan tutti and Valencienne in The Merry Widow. In addition to performing, Ms. Young has expanded her creative talents to include directing musical theater productions of Oklahoma, The Pajama Game, Little Shop of Horrors, Smokey Joe’s Café, Kiss Me Kate and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. Currently, Ms. Young is the Associate Choral Conductor and Theater Arts Instructor at St. Vincent Pallotti High School in Laurel, Md., the Assistant Director of Music at St. Philip’s Episcopal Church also in Laurel, and is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing.
Instructor, Voice (Retired 6/16) - Lauretta Young
Graduate of the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, BM, where she was a student of the late Alice G. Duschak. Awarded a graduate scholarship to the Juilliard School of Music, N.Y., to study voice and opera theatre under Sergius Kagen and Florence Page Kimball. Winner of numerous national and international competitions such as: Metropolitan Opera National Auditions, Lincoln Center, N.Y.; International Musikwettbewerbe, Munich, Germany; Silver Medalists at Concours International de Chant, Toulouse, France: and Tchaikovsky International Competition, Moscow, Russia. Lauretta has sung with such noted conductors as Leonard Bernstein, Antal Dorati, Sergiu Commissiona, and Reiner Miedel. Her operatic professional debut was as Susanna in “Le Nozze di Figaro”, Boston Opera Company and has sung the role of Drusilla in “La Corovatione di Papea”, Washington Opera at the Kennedy Center, DC. She opened the State Theatre at Lincoln Center; sang with New York Philharmonic Orchestra at Philharmonical Hall (now Juilliard School) and the Metropolitan Opera Auditions Competition and scenes. Lauretta has appeared with numerous orchestras throughout the U.S. and abroad such as, New York Philharmonic Baltimore Symphony, National Symphony, Orchestra of Gavel, Sweden. She has appeared at the White House on two occasions; under President Johnson, with Boston Opera Company and President Nixon with National Symphony Orchestra as Affiliate Artist to the National Capital Parks Service, Washington D.C.
Lauretta has taught vocal music from grades kindergarten thru 12th and numerous colleges in the States, Canada, and France. She has sung on 700 Club and other Christian, Secular TV and radio programs in U.S., Eastern and Western Europe, Scandinavia, and Israel. She has performed as adjudicator for various vocal competitions.
She has developed programs which facilitates the building, enhancing and enrichment of the talent of young and old. These programs break down barriers of elitism and piety and encourages each one’s abilities and thus builds confidence, self esteem and vision for their lives. She currently teaches voice and diction and repertoire at the Baltimore School for the Arts. Formerly teaching young artists such as Denyce Graves at the Duke Ellington School, Washington, D.C