Questions? E-mail: NKuster@pacific.edu
Sue Schrier Bancroft has had a varied career in music to say the least. In 1994 she retired from the position of Professor of Bassoon at the University of North Texas College of Music. She was head of the woodwind chamber music program, taught freshman music theory and carried 17-23 bassoon students who were invited to Aspen, Tanglewood, Blossom, and Jackson Hole. Having started the reed program and acquired the room and equipment for her students, Sue also brought in professional bassoonists, medical specialists and chamber groups from all over the country. Her students have gone on to perform in orchestras and teach at universities all over the world. She has also started chamber series in the places she has lived. In 1995, she retired from playing with the Dallas Symphony as well as Principal Bassoon with the Dallas Opera and Dallas Ballet Orchestras. She has a Bachelor of Education from Central Michigan University and a Master of Music (Teaching Fellow) from the University of Michigan. Her majors were bassoon, flute, piano, music theory and woodwinds. She taught public school in Michigan and went on to teach at numerous colleges, including Grand Valley State University, West Texas State A&M, Kent State University and University of North Texas. She studied with Hugh Cooper, Robert Barris and George Goslee and in the 70s, made the finals and semis for numerous orchestras including Dallas, San Francisco, and Buffalo. Since retiring, Sue has been Commissioner for the Arts for Texas and for The Gifted and Talented Commission, president of her school board, numerous nonprofit and charitable boards having to do with the arts, education,children and the elderly. Currently, she is Chair of the Texas Women's University Board of Regents and is Chair of the new chancellor search committee. Having only played the bassoon for 6 months in high school, it has been quite a ride!
Jeffrey Barudin is a freelance percussionist and educator based in St. Louis. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Music and the Director of Percussion Studies at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, MO. He has also recently been named the Director of Bands on the Lindenwood University-Belleville campus, where he the director of the newly formed Fighting Lynx Pep Band. He received his DMA and MM from the University of Michigan, and a BS in Music Education from Penn State University. His primary instructors were Dan Armstrong, Joseph Gramley and Michael Udow. He has performed as a soloist and ensemble member throughout the United States. He is Principal Timpanist with the Town & Country Symphony Orchestra and the St. Louis Civic Orchestra. He has also performed with the Lansing (MI) Symphony, the Altoona (PA) Symphony, the Arbor Opera Theater and the Bloomfield (NJ) Symphony. As a member of the Drop Circle Percussion Trio, he performed at the Richard Rodgers Theater on Broadway. He also played with Roland Vazquez’s Latin-Jazz Ensemble, performing throughout the Midwest and at PASIC 2003 in Louisville. He can be heard on numerous CD’s, including the Grammy-winning Songs of Innocence and Experience, composed by William Bolcom and conducted by Leonard Slatkin. He has also worked closely with several important composers, collaborating with Michael Daugherty for his timpani concerto Raise the Roof and Bright Sheng for his marimba concerto Colors of Crimson. Dr. Barudin proudly endorses Innovative Percussion mallets and products, Black Swamp percussion, and Sabian cymbals.
Richard Beene enjoys an active career as a teacher, soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral performer. In 2001, while serving as Professor of Bassoon at the University of Michigan, he was awarded the 2001 Harold Haugh Award for excellence in studio teaching. He has been invited to present master classes and teaching residencies at a number of institutions, including the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California, Rice University's Shepherd School of Music, and McGill University, among others. He has also served on the faculties of Michigan State University and Wichita State University. In addition to performing numerous times with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Mr. Beene has appeared with the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. While maintaining his teaching schedule in Michigan, he also held the position of Principal Bassoon with the Toledo Symphony Orchestra, where he performed many times as a soloist. Additionally, he has toured Europe as a soloist with the American Sinfonietta and performed as a soloist at the Festival de Musique de St. Barthelemy in the French West Indies. Summer festival engagements have included the Sunflower Music Festival in Kansas, the Basically Bach Festival in Anchorage (Alaska), the Colorado Music Festival, Strings in the Mountains (Colorado), the Arkansas Music Festival, Washington's Centram Chamber Music Festival, the Bellingham Festival of Music, and the Peninsula Music Festival (Wisconsin). Chamber music and recital engagements have taken him to New York's Merkin Concert Hall and the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., as well as venues throughout Germany, Switzerland, Italy, and Austria. Mr. Beene has also been a featured recitalist at the annual convention of the International Double Reed Society. Richard Beene is Dean of the Colburn School Conservatory of Music, Chair of the Winds Department and teaches bassoon.
Cellist Jacqueline Black is a dynamic solo and chamber musician in northeast Ohio. As a duo with classical guitarist Erik Mann she has given concerts at The Cleveland Clinic, the Holden Arboretum, in the Bratenahl Chamber Music Series as well as at venues in Erie and Edinboro, Pennsylvania, and over the airwaves of WQLN. She has been a member of the Erie Philharmonic, the Erie Chamber Orchestra, the South Bend Symphony, and has also performed with the Akron Symphony and the Wheeling Symphony. She has been a featured soloist with the Erie Philharmonic and the Erie Chamber Orchestra showcasing the concertos of Haydn, Dvorak, Shostakovich, and Vivaldi. In the summer of 2012, Ms. Black participated in the Classical Music Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria, and had the privilege of performing works by Haydn and Beethoven in the palaces and churches in which they were premiered. Most recently, Ms. Black has expanded her repertoire through the use of a Bridge solid body electric cello, nicknamed “Purple Reign,” in the genres of classic and alternative rock and jazz music. She is a founding member of The Savane Trio, a piano trio. They toured Japan twice, receiving critical acclaim in Japan's Ongakugendai and Ongaku no tomo music magazines. The trio "wept of grief and sang for passion...they are truly extraordinary," wrote Yoshiko Honobe. The Savane Trio was a participant in Chamber Music America's Rural Residency Program during the 1998-99 school year as Artists in Residence in Safford, Arizona. They enhanced the musical life of the community through performance, outreach, and education. Ms. Black studied at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Northwestern University and the University of Notre Dame. Her principal teachers have included Karen Buranskas, Laurien Laufman, and Hans Jørgen Jensen. She has also studied orchestral repertoire with John Pegis of the Chicago Symphony, David Premo of the Pittsburgh Symphony, and coached with Bryan Dumm of the Cleveland Orchestra. From 2003-2012 Ms. Black served as Instructor of Cello at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. She has also taught at Mercyhurst University and Allegheny College. She currently maintains a cello studio in Lakewood, OH. Her students have won national awards, music scholarships, and have enjoyed successful job placement.
David Angelo Ciancaglini is a contemporary composer, teacher, bassoonist, saxophonist, oboist, clarinetist and contrabassoonist in Rochester, NY and the surrounding areas. Mr. Ciancaglini is now an alumnus of George Mason University (Fairfax, VA) where he studied Contrabassoon (Bassoon) and composition. Under the batons of Anthony J. Maiello and John E. Casagrande, Mr. Ciancaglini has performed in George Mason University's Wind Symphony, Symphony Orchestra, Pit Orchestra, Symphonic Band, and Chamber Orchestra playing Contrabassoon and Bassoon. He was also the Contrabassoonist for the NoVA Manassas Symphony Orchestra (Manassas, VA) and the American University (Washington D.C.) under the direction of Shizuo Kuwahara. He has had the honor of performing at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom, the National Cathedral of Washington, D.C., The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Carnegie Hall in New York City. While a student at George Mason University, Mr. Ciancaglini studied bassoon and contrabassoon with Truman Harris of the National Symphony Orchestra (Washington D.C.), Fraser Jackson of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (Canada) and with Douglas Kehlenbrink of George Mason University. Most prestigiously, he was a composition student of Steve Antosca, director of the Contemporary Music Forum of Washington, D.C. As a composer, Mr. Ciancaglini has composed over eighty pieces, most of which are self published and for sale at his website. He loves to explore the timbre properties of each instrument or voice he is composing for, always trying to get the most colors out of a limited color pallet. He is quite fond of a peculiar septet that consists of oboe, alto clarinet, bassoon, marimba, percussion, piano and double bass. He is passionate about the symphony orchestra and dedicated to the art of orchestration. He is also a volunteer firefighter, serving the Hydrant Hose Company of the City of Geneva (NY) Fire Department. A truly dedicated man, he responded to 325 emergency calls in 2008, and was fireman of the year of 2008. Currently, Mr. Ciancaglini enjoys substitute teaching kindergarten, and is a member of the International Double Reed Society and the American Composers Forum. With his wife Jessica, he currently resides in Geneva, New York, where he is continuously composing, performing as a saxophonist with NAIAD and furthering his education in orchestration. Mr. Ciancaglini is the son of a Hammond B3 player and is proud of it.
Benjamin Coelho, Professor of Bassoon, has been at The University of Iowa since 1998. A native from Tatuí, Brazil, Ben started the bassoon at the age of ten at the Tatuí Conservatory where his father was the director and his three brothers also studied music. In the early 1980’s he came to the United States to study at Purchase College Conservatory of Music, where he graduated with Honors. He received a Master of Music degree from Manhattan School of Music. His bassoon teachers included Clóvis Franco, Donald MacCourt, Arthur Weisberg, and Kim Walker. He has appeared as soloist, chamber musician, orchestral musician, teacher and clinician in several countries including the United States, Brazil, Argentina, Bolivia, Portugal, France, Romania, Australia, Canada, Czech Republic, Mexico, and Panama. Ben has released six critically acclaimed CDs garnering praise from numerous national and international publications that have said: "Ben has such a gorgeous sound, such impeccable technique, and such sensitive musicality, that it is a real pleasure to recommend this album very strongly to all of you!" (Ronald Klimko, IDRS Journal), "His playing is unfailingly sonorous, expressive and alert, and he champions the pieces on this recording as if he believed in them without reservation." (Donald Rosenberg, The Gramophone), "Coelho is fantastic. His sound is brilliant, resonant, and strong, and he has a warm tone that blends superbly with the strings." (Schwartz, American Record Guide). Ben has played with the Orchestra Iowa, Waterloo/Cedar Falls Symphony (Iowa), The Camerata Chamber Orchestra (Indiana), The Bloomington Pops Orchestra (Indiana), and The Bronx Opera Company (New York). Currently, he performs as Principal Bassoon with the Quad City Symphony Orchestra (Illinois/Iowa). Ben lives in Iowa City, IA with his beloved wife Karen and their wonderful daughters Liliana and Julia.
Principal bassoonist Rian Craypo has been with the Houston Symphony since 2007. Born in Virginia, she moved to Texas at 10 months of age and grew up east of Austin on a small farm. After studying at the University of Texas at Austin with Kristin Wolfe Jensen she attended Rice University, where she received her master's degree under former Houston Symphony principal bassoonist Benjamin Kamins. Rian’s versatility as a performer has led to appearances in a variety of roles both in the United States and abroad. In 2001 she was awarded a Federation of German/American Clubs Scholarship, which led to a year of study and performances in Germany, and she was a finalist in the Gillet-Fox International Bassoon Competition in both 2004 and 2006. Rian and her composer/firefighter husband Sean have two children, Amelia and Isaiah, and are expecting their third in February 2014.
Matthew Daline enjoys an international career as a chamber musician and viola soloist. He began his studies on violin with Michele Auclair of the Paris Conservatory, and continued his studies on the viola with Marcus Thompson and Martha Strongin Katz at the New England Conservatory, Boston. He received a bachelor's degree from The Juilliard School where he was a Teaching Assistant for Karen Tuttle and a master's degree from Yale University where he studied with Jesse Levine. While pursuing the Doctorate of Musical Arts at The State University of New York, Stony Brook, Daline has worked with Katherine Murdock, Lawrence Dutton, and served as a Teaching Assistant for the Department of Music. Daline was the top prizewinner at the 1999 Artists International Competition in New York City which provided a debut recital in Carnegie Hall. Since giving his viola debut in Carnegie Hall Mr. Daline has performed worldwide as a viola soloist. An avid chamber musician, he has performed at numerous international festivals including The Banff Center for the Arts, Canada; The Spoleto Festival, Italy; The Verbier Academy, Switzerland; The Tanglewood Festival; The Music Academy of the West, The New York String Orchestra Seminar and The Sarasota Music Festival. Mr. Daline has recently held viola and chamber music master classes at Yale University; North Carolina School of the Arts; South Florida State University; Penn State University; Yonsei University (Korea); Conservatory of Music "George Enescu"; Bucharest; University of Transilvania, Brasov (Romania); National Conservatory of Music (Costa Rica) and the School of Music and Dance; Charleville, France. Daline is a versatile musician and performs frequently as a viola soloist, chamber musician, and principal violist in most of the major concert halls of North America including recent performances in Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall, Avery Fisher Hall and at Carnegie Hall. Mr. Daline has recently performed as Principal Violist of The Baton Rouge Symphony, Opera Louisiane, and with the Louisiana Philharmonic. In 2006 Mr. Daline started the Southern Viola Society which organized events at Louisiana State University. Mr. Daline performs on a Brescian Viola circa 1690.
Whether he is collaborating with an instrumentalist, coaching a singer, conducting an opera, or accompanying a choir, Chuck Dillard is a pianist at his best while making music with others. Hired at age seven as pianist for his parents’ church, he fashioned his musical beginnings, education and career around the art of collaboration. In 2008 he was appointed to the faculty of the new Collaborative Piano Area in the Butler School of Music at the University of Texas at Austin. Previously he was on faculty at Furman University in Greenville, SC as instructor of music theory and staff pianist. As an educator, Dr. Dillard leads several classes on the method of accompanying to both graduate and undergraduate piano majors. In addition, he teaches diction for pianists, trains student duos, coaches singers and performs regularly with faculty, guests and students. He lectures and performs frequently at national conferences including the International Double Reed Society Conference, National Opera Association and NATS conventions and gives master classes throughout the United States. Recent performance highlights include a recital at the Dallas Museum of Art, a lecture recital on the vocal music of Lili Boulanger and conducting productions of The Rape of Lucretia and The Ballad of Baby Doe with Spotlight on Opera in Austin, TX. In the upcoming season, Dr. Dillard can be seen at universities across the country performing, teaching and lecturing on the art of collaboration. Dr. Dillard received degrees in collaborative piano from the University of Colorado – Boulder (DMA) the University of Maryland – College Park (MM) and Furman University (BM).
The Enid Trio is an adventurous new chamber ensemble with a unique instrumentation and a bold approach to music from the 16th through the 21st centuries. Formed originally at the University of Iowa, their members come from across the United States: bassoonist Stephanie Patterson (California), violinist Megan Karls (Wisconsin) and violist Megan Gray (Virginia). They play an active role in the changing music scene, performing re-imagined versions of standard works, commissioning new pieces, and working with musicians across all genres. In addition to their performing engagements, they present educational programs that emphasize communication, movement, and creative music exploration. The members of the Enid trio have commissioned over 25 new works, including Recordarás, written for them by Lewis Nielson. As solo artists, they have performed internationally, from Russia to Brazil, and across the United States from Virginia to Alaska. They have toured Iowa, Wisconsin, Ohio and Kansas, and have upcoming engagements in Montana, Virginia and across the Midwest. They perform and teach professionally in Iowa, Wisconsin, Montana, and Wichita. Megan Karls is a member of the Cascade Quartet and Great Falls Symphony, as well as the String Orchestra of the Rockies. Megan Gray is a doctoral candidate at the University of Iowa, as well as a performer and teacher in the greater Iowa City area. Stephanie Patterson is the Visiting Assistant Professor of Bassoon at Wichita State University, as well as bassoonist of the Lieurance Woodwind Quintet and Principal Bassoon of the Wichita Grand Opera.
Devin Farney is a musician based out San Francisco. He is an internationally performed composer, pianist, and songwriter. He received a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music in 2006 (studying under Francois Rose and Robert Coburn) and a Masters of Music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music in 2009 (studying under Dan Becker). Devin and his music have been a part of the American Conservatory in Fontainebleau, France, the international new music festival in Darmstadt, Germany, the ANALOG Art's "Iron Composer" competition, and more. His works have received notable performances and honors/awards. Devin's music has been commissioned under the baton of up-and-coming conductors, performers, and ensembles. Equally at home in the world of film music, Devin has also composed music for independent film makers, playwrights, and other artists. He is currently the staff composer at Brilliant Ideas LLC.
Rebecca Renfro Grimes possesses a versatile artistry that spans from teaching to directing to performing. Ms. Grimes’ directing credits include mainstage productions with the Sam Houston State University Opera Workshop, Greater Worcester Opera in Massachusetts, Opera del West and University of Connecticut Opera Theater, as well as various scenes programs, and will the guest director for Lone Star College’s production of Les Miserables in April 2013. Critically praised as a soprano with “clear-toned elegance and dignity,” Ms. Grimes’ stage credits include leading roles in Die Fledermaus, Le nozze di Figaro, Impressario, Dido and Aeneas, Don Giovanni, Trial by Jury, Gianni Schicchi, L’enfant et les sortileges, A Game of Chance, L’Europe Galante, and La Vera Costanza. As a sought-after oratorio soloist, Ms. Grimes has been featured in such works as Mendelssohn’s St. Paul, the Haydn Creation, Mozart Mass in C Minor, the Brahms Ein Deutches Requiem, Bach’s Cantata 51, Gasparini’s L’oraculo del Fato, Handel’s Laudate Pueri, Faure’s Requiem, and Britten’s Rejoice in the Lamb. Recent projects include Once Upon an Opera, an opera scenes program that features scenes from fairy tales, and an appearance as the narrator with the Sam Houston State University Faculty Woodwind Quintet in a performance of William Walton’s Façade. The SHSU Opera Workshop has gained national recognition by being one of five finalists in the National Opera Association’s scenes competition in 2011, 2012 and 2013. Ms. Grimes is the Director of Opera Workshop at Sam Houston State University and is the co-founder of Boston-based Opera del West.
MQVC’s Co-founder and Executive Director, Kristin Wolfe Jensen, has been on the faculty at the University of Texas at Austin Butler School of Music since 1995, and is also on the faculty of the International Festival Institute at Round Top and Principal Bassoonist with the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra in Houston. "...She has simply turned in the finest-played bassoon recital I have ever heard... She obviously sees tone quality as the foundation for her fluent technique... It is a ravishing sound, siren-like in its attractive flair... Ms. Jensen could teach a lot about musicality to a number of famous violinists..." - the American Record Guide said of Ms. Jensen’s solo CD Shadings. An esteemed pedagogue, she has given guest recitals and master classes at many major American music schools and her former UT students hold major orchestral positions and university teaching positions around the country. Her extensive online bassoon method, Music and the Bassoon, provides an innovative, multimedia approach to learning the bassoon free of charge on the internet. Ms. Jensen is a graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory and the Juilliard School where her teachers included Stephen Maxym, Kenneth Moore, William Winstead, Chuck Ullery, and Eric Arbiter.
Since entering the world of professional music in 1972, Benjamin Kamins has enjoyed a wide-ranging career as an orchestral musician, chamber player, solo performer, and educator. During his nine years as Associate Principal Bassoon with the Minnesota Orchestra, Mr. Kamins taught at St. Olaf and Macalester Colleges and was a member of the Aurora Wind Quintet. In 1981 he was appointed Principal Bassoon of the Houston Symphony, a position he held until 2003. As a founding member of both the Epicurean Wind Quintet and the Houston Symphony Chamber Players, his life in Houston remained diverse as his artistic presence deepened in the community. Faculty appointments came at the University of Houston and then at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music. The result of this was a personal involvement with fine academic institutions and the communities they serve. Now as the Lynette S. Autrey Professor of Bassoon at Rice University’s Shepherd School, Mr. Kamins continues to be an advocate for young musicians and classical music performance. In addition to his time in the Minnesota and Houston Symphonies, he has served as a guest principal with other major symphony orchestras in Pittsburgh, Los Angeles, Boston and New York. His tenure in the orchestra world resulted in many solo performances and recordings, including a 1994 recording of the Mozart Bassoon Concerto with conductor Christoph Eschenbach. Mr. Kamins currently spends his summer teaching and performing throughout the U.S. He holds faculty positions at the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, California and the International Festival Institute at Round Top in Round Top, Texas. Both programs pair faculty chamber music performances with their highly regarded teaching programs. He is also Principal Bassoon of the Sun Valley Summer Symphony in Sun Valley, Idaho, a superb orchestra comprised of leading musicians from the nation’s top orchestras. Mr. Kamins is in demand for master classes, recitals and chamber performances throughout North America. An interest in new music has led to a recent series of commissions and tours that serve to enrich the repertoire for the bassoon. In addition to his performances on modern bassoon, Mr. Kamins’ interests have taken him into the world of historical performance, and also performs on baroque bassoon. He can be heard playing with many fine period instrument ensembles, especially Ars Lyrica Houston. In all of his professional activities Mr. Kamins has been an active participant in maintaining the vitality of each institution. During his orchestral years, he served on numerous committees, searches and planning groups that worked toward the long-term success of these orchestras. At Rice University he continues to enjoy creating partnerships between the Shepherd School and other areas of the University. Ben Kamins solo CD of French recital pieces on Diabolical Genius Records is available at iTunes, and cdbaby. In addition, he has recorded for Crystal Records the complete sonatas for two oboes, bassoon and continuo by Jan Dismas Zelenka. This remarkable set is the first complete recording of these pieces by American performers on modern instruments.
Dr. Nathan Koch joined the faculty of Sam Houston State University as the Assistant Professor of Bassoon in the fall of 2012. He has appeared as a workshop clinician and lecturer at Southern Methodist University, Sam Houston State University, and many area middle and high schools. He has also presented at the conventions of the Texas Bandmasters Association and the International Double Reed Society, and was a featured soloist at the Kansas Bandmasters Association convention. His freelancing work has led to engagements with the Houston and Wichita Grand Operas, the Austin Lyric Opera, and the Austin, Tulsa, Victoria, and Brazos Valley Symphonies. Festival appearances include the Round Top Music Festival, the Texas Music Festival, the Pierre Monteux School Orchestra, and the Festival de Música de Santa Catarina in Jaraguá do Sul, Brazil. He has been on the faculties of the Longhorn Music Camp, Bocal Majority Bassoon Camp, and the High Plains Band and Orchestra Camp. Several of his publications are available through TrevCo Music, including works by Vivaldi, Beethoven, and Debussy. Nathan received a Bachelor of Music degree, summa cum laude, from Wichita State University under the guidance of Nicolasa Kuster and a MM and DMA from the University of Texas at Austin with Kristin Wolfe Jensen.
Bassoonist Nicolasa Kuster joined the faculty of the University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music in Stockton, California in the Fall of 2008. She is a Founding Co-Director of the Meg Quigley Vivaldi Competition. She is Principal Bassoon of the Stockton Symphony and a member of the Pacific Arts Woodwind Quintet. Previous positions include Principal Bassoon of the Wichita Symphony and Second Bassoon in the Tulsa Philharmonic Orchestra, the Rhode Island Philharmonic, and the Virginia Symphony. Ms. Kuster taught at Wichita State University and was a member of the Lieurance Woodwind Quintet for eight years-she is featured on their most recent CD, Music from the Americas (Summit). She spent six summer seasons performing with the Spoleto Festival Orchestra in Spoleto, Italy and can be heard on the Chandos Label playing Principal Bassoon on Gian Carlo Menotti's operas The Consul and The Saint of Bleeker Street; two CDs of Gian Carlo Menotti's orchestral, vocal and instrumental works; and Prokofiev's War and Peace. She has participated in numerous summer festivals, including Anchorage Music Festival; New Hampshire Music Festival; Ameropa Chamber Music Festival in Prague, Czech Republic; Sequoia Chamber Music Workshop in Arcata, CA; and the Marrowstone Festival in Bellingham, WA. Her solo appearances with orchestra include multiple-city tours of Kazakhstan, televised performances in Italy and Panama, and numerous performances in the United States. She is the winner of the 1995 Chicago Musicians Club of Women's Solo Competition Farwell Award, which she won while a member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago studying with the late Bruce Grainger, Assistant Principal Bassoon of the Chicago Symphony. She is a double degree graduate from Oberlin College and Conservatory and a student of George Sakakeeny. She taught at Oberlin as a sabbatical replacement for him in Fall 2002. Ms. Kuster began her musical studies as the daughter of musically minded missionaries, growing up in Peru, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama.
Christine Lidvall has been teaching the Alexander Technique since 2000 when she was certified through Alexander Technique International (ATI). She graduated from the teachers training course of the Alexander Alliance in Philadelphia, PA where she studied with Bruce and Martha Hansen Fertman. She has also studied intensively with Frank Ottiwell, John Nicholls and with first generation teacher Elizabeth Walker. She offers individual lessons at A Healing Collective and gives workshops and classes for many organizations including the C.G. Jung Educational Center of Houston, the Jewish Community Center of Houston, University of Houston and Rice University. Lidvall founded and directed Chrysalis Dance Company from 1983 to 1996 and taught dance and the Alexander Technique for Rice University for over 20 years. She has taught workshops and master classes in dance for organizations across the country. Her background in dance and other movement studies influences her teaching of the Alexander Technique. She is a graduate with a BS in communications from Northwestern University and holds an MA in dance from the University of Houston/Clear Lake.
With a wide-ranging repertoire, pianist Solungga Fang-Tzu Liu has enjoyed an active career as a soloist and collaborator in venues across four continents. A dedicated performer of new music, Dr. Liu has performed music by many composers of our time, including the Lutoslawski Piano Concerto, Steve Reich’s The Desert Music and Tehillim with Alarm Will Sound, and Meandering River for solo piano by Robert Morris (which is dedicated to her). Dr. Liu premiered Gregory Mertl’s Piano Concerto with the University of Minnesota Wind Ensemble, conducted by Craig Kirchhoff in 2011. A CD of this concerto will be released by INNOVA Records in 2014. Dr. Liu’s 2010 release, The Pleasure-Dome of Kubla Khan: Piano Works of Charles Tomlinson Griffes (Centaur), was praised as having, “excellent sound, sensitivity and beguiling color” by the American Record Guide and “thoughtful interpretations” by the prestigious Clavier Companion. Dr. Liu has concertized extensively during the past several years. Major performances include Ravel’s Concerto in G Major with Taipei Metropolitan Orchestra, solo recitals at Taiwan’s National Concert Hall, the Goethe Center in Bangkok, the Central Conservatory in Beijing, the Thailand International Mozart Festival, and a chamber concert with new music ensemble Open Gate at Carnegie Hall. Her 2012-13 activities include recital tours in ten states in the United States, concerts and master classes in Romania, Brazil, China, Taiwan and Canada. Dr. Liu is Assistant Professor of Piano at Bowling Green State University, Ohio. Born in Taipei, Taiwan, Dr. Liu holds degrees in piano performance from the Eastman School of Music.
Nadina Mackie Jackson tours and records worldwide on both modern and historical bassoons, has released 11 solo CDs, many chamber music CDs and can be heard on over 100 orchestral recordings on the London Decca, Sony and Naxos labels. Her most recent release is Vivaldi Volume 1 with Nicholas McGegan on the MSR label. Her first concerto album with Guy Few and the Toronto Chamber Orchestra won Best Orchestral Album of the Year in the 2009 Just Plain Folks Music Awards. A featured performer at the JPF awards ceremony held in Nashville, Tennessee in August, 2009, Nadina represented the sole classical act amongst ninety performances. Many new works have been dedicated to her, including solo and double concerti, sonatas, solo works and one symphony. The Canadian Concerto Project will be released in February, 2013. Nadina has performed as soloist with several orchestras including the Group of 27, the Prince George Symphony, l'Orchestre Symphoniqe de Montréal, Toronto Chamber Orchestra, Cayuga Chamber Orchestra (Ithaca, NY), the Grand River Festival Soloists and l'Orchestre Symphonique de Trois-Rivières. Former co-directors of the Grand River Baroque Festival, Nadina Mackie Jackson and Guy Few frequently collaborate in recordings, recital tours, concerto appearances, lectures and children's concerts in Canada and the United States. A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, Nadina joined l'Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal where she remained for a decade and later became Principal Bassoon of the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra. She is currently Principal bassoon of the Toronto Chamber Orchestra, the Group of Twenty Seven and the baroque orchestra, the Aradia Ensemble. Nadina is a regular guest with Violons du Roy. Nadina is the founder of the Council of Canadian Bassoonists and teaches at the University of Toronto and the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music.
Christina McGann, violin, enjoys a diverse performing career as a soloist, chamber, and orchestral musician. She has performed concertos with the National Symphony Orchestra, the Richardson Symphony, Musica Bella Orchestra in New York, the Moldovan Chamber Orchestra, the National Chamber Orchestra in Washington D.C., Ohio University New Music Ensemble, and most recently the St. Petersburg Academic Symphony in Russia. Ms. McGann has had great success at national and international competitions, winning prizes at the National Symphony Young Soloist Competition, the Lennox Competition, the Johansen International Competition, the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition, junior division, Chamber Music Yellow Springs, and the Ackerman Competition. Ms. McGann holds both a Bachelor of Music and a Master of Music in violin performance from the Julliard School. Her principal teachers include Ronald Copes, Victor Danchenko, Robert Mann, and Donald Weilerstein. Ms. McGann is currently working towards her doctoral degree at SUNY Stony Brook under the tutelage of Soovin Kim, Philip Setzer, and Hagai Shaham. Also an avid educator, Ms. McGann began her teaching career in New York City as a Julliard Morse Fellow- a program that brings Julliard students extensively trained as artist-educators into public school classrooms on a weekly basis throughout the school year. In addition to private teaching experience, Ms. McGann taught as part of Julliard’s Instrumental Music Program, has been on faculty at Brooklyn College Preparatory, coached chamber music as a graduate assistant at SUNY-Purchase, received her Suzuki Certification through all books at New York City’s School for Strings, and served as Artist in Residence at Ohio University School of Music.
Kathleen McLean currently holds the position of Associate Professor of Music at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University (Bloomington). She is a sought-after chamber and orchestral musician, recitalist, and teacher. Internationally recognized, McLean was Associate Principal Bassoon of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra from 1992 to 2013. Since 2001, she has toured extensively with the prestigious World Orchestra for Peace under the baton of Valery Gergiev. McLean's former orchestral appointments include Principal Bassoon of the Canadian Opera Company and guest principal bassoon with the London Symphony Orchestra (UK) and the National Arts Centre Orchestra and Boston Symphony Orchestra. Kathleen has participated in many chamber music festivals, including the Evian International Festival, Vancouver Chamber Music Festival, Scotia Festival, and the Ottawa Chamber Music Festival. She was appointed to the faculty of the University of Toronto in 1989, became a faculty member at the Royal Conservatory of Music and the Glenn Gould Professional School in 2002, and began as a bassoon instructor with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada in 2009. She performs frequently with New Music Concerts, and is a founding member of the Caliban Quartet and the Toronto Wind Quintet.
Praised for his "sweet, luxurious" sound (Fanfare), violinist Stephen Miahky has garnered acclaim for his performances as a recitalist and a chamber musician throughout North America and Europe. His most recent engagements include performances in New York City’s Symphony Space, Merkin Hall, and Bergamusic, Atlanta’s ProMozart Society, the Princeton Chamber Music Society, the Southwest Virginia Festival of the Arts, Vancouver’s Sonic Boom Festival, the American Academies in Rome and Berlin, the Netherlands’ De Lakenhal, NPR’s Performance Today, and for the Dalai Lama. As a chamber musician, Miahky has performed at Monadnock Music, the Walla Walla Chamber Music Festival, Kneisel Hall, Chamber Music Ann Arbor, with the Michigan Chamber Players, the Bryant Park Quartet, the iO Quartet, and with the Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble. He has performed with such distinguished musicians as Cho-Liang Lin, Nicholas Eanet, Martin Beaver, Norman Fischer, Steven Doane, and members of the Arianna, Chester, Concord, Tokyo, and Los Angeles Piano Quartets. Miahky is currently a member of Brave New Works, and a rotating concertmaster with the IRIS Orchestra in Memphis, TN. He has also served as guest concertmaster of the Columbus ProMusica, the Illinois Symphony, and the Kansas City Symphony. Miahky has been a soloist with the Ohio University Symphony Orchestra, Cornell Symphony Orchestra, the Cornell Chamber Orchestra, the Ann Arbor Symphony, the Brave New Works Ensemble, the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble, the IRIS Orchestra, and the University of Michigan Philharmonia. He can be heard on the AMP, New Dynamic, Edition Modern, Albany, and Naxos record labels. A native of Akron, Ohio, Miahky received his DMA from Rutgers University where he received the Bettenbender Award for outstanding artistic achievement. He received a BM and MM from the University of Michigan and remains the university’s only two-time winner of the Earl V. Moore Award for outstanding achievement. Miahky studied chamber music with Andrew Jennings, Martin Katz, and members of the Cleveland, Julliard, American and Tokyo String Quartets, and received additional training at the Aspen Music Festival, the Meadowmount School, the Perlman Music Program, Canada’s National Arts Centre, and the Blossom Festival. His major teachers include Arnold Steinhardt, Paul Kantor, Stephen Shipps, and Alan Bodman. He has served on the faculty of the Point Counterpoint Chamber Music Camp, Cornell University, and Ohio University, and has given master classes throughout North America and Korea. He currently serves as Assistant Professor of Violin at the College of Musical Arts at Bowling Green State University and on the faculty of the Montecito International Music Festival in Santa Barbara, CA.
Dr. Albie Micklich is Associate Professor of Bassoon at Arizona State University. Prior to this appointment Micklich was on the faculty of Indiana University of Pennsylvania, University of Missouri-Columbia, Michigan State University, and University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Micklich holds degrees from Michigan State University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania and The Juilliard School where he studied with Barrick Stees, David Borst, and David Carroll, respectively. In 2013 & 2012 Micklich was nominated for ASU’s Parents Association Professor of the Year, an award that “spotlights the contributions of excellent ASU professors.” As winner of Juilliard's concerto competition, he gave his Avery Fisher Hall solo debut performing the New York premier of Ellen Taaffe Zwilich's Bassoon Concerto with Stanislaw Skrowaczeski conducting. An active member in the International Double Reed Society (IDRS), Micklich, along with Professor Martin Schuring, was the host of the 2011 IDRS conference at Arizona State University. He presented the world premiere of John Steinmetz’s Songs and Dances for oboe and bassoon and Damian Montano’s Suite for Daydreams for bassoon quartet at IDRS 2013, Robbie McCarthy’s Date Shake for Bassoon Quartet at IDRS 2012, Roshanne Etezady’s Hammer/Anvil/Stirrup at IDRS 2011, and Damian Montano’s Double Concerto for Clarinet, Bassoon, and Orchestra at the 2008 IDRS conference in Provo, UT. An active chamber musician, Micklich has performed at the International Clarinet Association conferences in Assisi, Italy (2013), Lincoln, NE (2012), Los Angeles (2011), Porto, Portugal (2009), Kansas City (2008), and Tokyo, Japan (2005). He has given recitals throughout Europe, Bermuda, Brazil, Australia, Japan, and the United States and has presented recitals and master classes at numerous universities and conservatories across the United States. Micklich is a Fox Bassoon Artist performing on a red maple 201.
Nermis Mieses has been recently appointed Assistant Professor of Oboe at Bowling Green State University in Ohio, USA. Prior to this appointment she held positions at the University of Kentucky (Lexington, KY), Ohio Northern University (Ada, OH), and Hillsdale College (Hillsdale, MI), and maintained a private studio in Ann Arbor, MI. Mieses is an active performer. In 2011, she won first place in the First International Oboe Competition, held in Santa Catarina, Brazil, and received the Best Brazilian Music Interpretation Prize. She also garnered second place at the Society for Musical Arts 2012 Young Artist Competition, Ann Arbor, MI. She has appeared in solo performances at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., and the Cranbrook Music Guild Series in Bloomfield Hills, MI, and has soloed with the Michigan Philharmonic Orchestra on the oboe d’amore. Currently Principal Oboe of the Michigan Opera Theatre in Detroit, and former principal of the Michigan Philharmonic, she has also performed throughout Michigan with the Dearborn, Ann Arbor, Sphinx, Rochester, Lexington Bach Festival, and Symphony of the Lakes Orchestras. On a national scale, she has appeared in concerts with the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra (San Juan, PR) and the National Repertory Orchestra (Breckenridge, CO) and toured Denmark with the Thy Chamber Music Festival (2011). She holds DMA and MM degrees from the University of Michigan under Dr. Nancy Ambrose King and BA from the Conservatory of Music of Puerto Rico, under Dr. Frances Colón.
Susan Nelson is the Assistant Professor of Bassoon at Bowling Green State University (BGSU), Ohio, and enjoys an active career as a performer, teacher, and clinician. Dr. Nelson is an advocate for new music as well as chamber music for the bassoon, and was recently appointed the director of the non-profit organization Bassoon Chamber Music Composition Competition (BCMCC). She has also taught bassoon and theory at Stephen F. Austin State University and played with the Stone Fort Wind Quintet in Nacogdoches, Texas. In the summer Dr. Nelson teaches at the Bocal Majority Bassoon Camp and BGSU’s Double Reed Camp. She has performed with the annual Classical Music Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria, as well as the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra, Toledo Symphony Orchestra, Oklahoma City Philharmonic Orchestra, Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra, Adrian Symphony Orchestra, and the Helena Symphony. Dr. Nelson taught at both Adrian and Heidelberg Colleges and was a member of the Heidelberg faculty wind quintet. She also held the position of Principal Bassoon in the Great Falls Symphony and was a member of the Chinook Winds quintet in Great Falls, Montana. Dr. Nelson has received the top award at the Midwest Double Reed Society Young Artists Competition, was a finalist in the University of Oklahoma Concerto Competition, a finalist in the Arapahoe Philharmonic Concerto competition, and won third place in the Ann Arbor Society for the Musical Arts competition. She is a graduate of the University of Kansas, the University of Oklahoma, and the University of Michigan. Her primary teachers include Jeffrey Lyman, Carl Rath, and Alan Hawkins.
Tom Nugent received a Bachelor of Music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music where he was a student of renowned oboist Marc Lifschey. Mr. Nugent is a founding member of the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble and currently holds the Principal Oboe position in the Sacramento Philharmonic, Sacramento Opera, Sacramento Choral Society, Stockton Symphony, Mendocino Music Festival and the Bear Valley Music Festival. He has also performs with the Oakland Symphony, Santa Rosa Symphony, San Jose Symphony, Fremont Symphony, and the Marin Symphony. Mr. Nugent has performed as soloist with the Sacramento Philharmonic, Stockton Symphony, Mendocino Music Festival Orchestra, Bear Valley Music Festival, Reno Baroque Ensemble, and the Diablo Ballet. An avid teacher, he is on the faculty of the University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music and performs as Artist in Residence with the Pacific Arts Woodwind Quintet. Mr. Nugent is also the oboe instructor at Mills College and former faculty of the University of California Santa Cruz. Mr. Nugent also plays electric bass in a blues band in the bay area. A passionate home winemaker, Mr. Nugent has been making wine for ten years and studied enology at Napa Valley College.
California native Stephanie Patterson is Visiting Assistant Professor of Bassoon at Wichita State University, and a member of the Lieurance Woodwind Quintet and the Enid Trio. She received her Doctorate of Musical Arts this December from the University of Iowa, and her dissertation, 64 Contemporary Etudes for Bassoon, will be published soon by Trevco Music Publishing. Her primary bassoon gurus have been Professors George Sakakeeny, Nicolasa Kuster and Benjamin Coelho, and she has also dabbled in jazz with Paul Hanson. She founded the Wichita State University New Music Series in the 2008-2009 season, and recently organized the first Iowa Celebration of Women Composers. She tours nationally with the Enid Trio, premiering new works for violin, viola and bassoon. Stephanie's performances often include staging and/or costumes, including the premieres of Joshua Morris's Dopple, Jason Palamara's an entitlement, and Katherine Ann Murdock's Deployments, written for her, as well as Michael Daugherty’s Dead Elvis at the Wichita Knob Festival, and In Freundschaft by Karlheinz Stockhausen for bassoon-playing teddy bear. She has performed at the Sonorities Festival in Belfast, Ireland, and the 24th Pro-Musica Festival in Juiz da Fora, Brazil. She has been a member of the Wichita Symphony, the Fairbanks Symphony and Arctic Chamber Orchestra, and other orchestras across the midwest. She has performed at Carnegie Hall, the busy streets of Moscow, the pedestrian malls of Madrid, the Kappella hall of St. Petersburg, a medieval church in Prague, with Pierre Boulez at the Kunstmuseum Luzern, and atop a gallows at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art.
Lorna Peters, pianist and harpsichordist, leads a multifaceted career as a performer, teacher and recording artist. She has performed countless recitals ranging from French Baroque to 20th-Century American music. She has given solo and chamber music concerts in California, New York, Washington, D.C., Canada, Austria, Germany, Holland and Switzerland, and her performances are frequently heard on National Public Radio and Austrian radio. Notable concerts have included a recital of 20th-century music for solo harpsichord, an all Brahms recital on her 1880 Viennese piano in honor of the centenary of the composer’s death, a Handel organ concerto with the Portland Baroque Orchestra and Monica Huggett, and a series of concerts on the sesquicentennial of Chopin’s death at the Salzburg Music Festival, where she is a regularly featured artist. Ms. Peters’ recording of C.P.E. Bach’s Chamber Sonatas with Music’s Re-creation was recently hailed by Gramophone magazine as “highly polished and enjoyable performances…strongly recommended.” Other recordings include Telemann Concertos, Lawes Fantasies, the Fantasies of Locke and Jenkins (Centaur), and Alec Wilder’s Suite for Harpsichord and Flute (Cantilena). Her ensemble credits include Music’s Re-creation, Camerata Academica, the New World Trio, Les Nations Salzburg, Monadnok Music and Duo Continuum. Her most recent collaboration, baroque duo Corde à vide with violinist Jubal Fulks, has been described as “fiery and brimming with inspired improvisation.” Spanning over 100 years of baroque music, their repertoire exemplifies the spontaneous, improvisatory character of this period, and showcases the startling cosmopolitan language of the late 17th century, the rich complexity of the German baroque style, and the sumptuous textures and dramatic flair of the late French composers. Her early career was marked by numerous awards including the Contemporary Music Prize at the 1989 Paris International Harpsichord Competition, and two Fulbright Scholarships to Austria where she studied with Kenneth Gilbert and Nicholas Harnoncourt at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, and with Gordon Murray in Vienna. Ms. Peters earned a Bachelor of Music in piano performance from Lawrence University, where she studied with Theodore Rehl. She completed a Master of Music in piano performance with Gilbert Kalish and her masters and doctoral degrees in harpsichord performance with Arthur Haas at SUNY-Stony Brook, New York. From 1993 to 1995 Ms. Peters was professor of music at the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music. She is currently professor of piano, harpsichord, chamber music, director of the ensemble Camerata Capistrano at California State University, Sacramento, and maintains a private studio of aspiring pianists and harpsichordists.
Karen Pierson is the Associate Professor of Bassoon at The Ohio State University. Ms. Pierson accepted this position in 2007 upon completing a thirteen-year tenure with the Houston Symphony Orchestra. Ms. Pierson was hired as the second bassoonist with the Houston Symphony in 1994. During this period, she made several orchestral recordings and toured Japan, Europe and the domestic United States. She has performed with the Grand Tetons Summer Music Festival, Chautauqua Opera Orchestra, Chicago Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, Columbus Symphony and the Austin Symphony. She has also appeared as soloist with the Omaha Symphony, Academy of the West Orchestra, Skokie Symphony and with university ensembles at the Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA) conference. Bassoon pedagogy is of great interest to Ms. Pierson. Her teaching posts have included The University of Nebraska at Omaha, The University of Texas at Austin, The University of Houston, All-State Division at the Interlochen National Music Camp, Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival, Midwest Bassoon camp and the Texas Music Festival. Ms. Pierson began her professional career in 1989 as Principal Bassoon with the Omaha Symphony after completing that summer as a Tanglewood fellow. She won the second place prize in the Fernand Gillet International Double Reed Competition in 1994 and has subsequently performed at the conference several times. Ms. Pierson received a master's degree in bassoon performance with Norman Herzberg at the University of Southern California, and a bachelor's degree in performance with Hugh Cooper at the University of Michigan.
Amy Pollard is Assistant Professor of Bassoon at the Hugh Hodgson School of Music at the University of Georgia. She formerly served as lecturer of bassoon at Baylor University and has also been on faculty at the University of Dayton and the Cincinnati School for the Creative and Performing Arts. Pollard has also been a faculty member for the Interlochen Arts Center Advanced Bassoon Institute. She is currently Second Bassoon with the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra and has performed with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the North Carolina Symphony, the Virginia Symphony, Symphony Orchestra Augusta, the Kentucky Symphony Orchestra, and the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, among others. Pollard has performed as a soloist with the University of Georgia Symphony Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, and Wind Symphony, as well as with the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Chamber Players. An avid chamber musician, she has performed at venues throughout the United States and also in Ireland, Belgium, and Argentina with such groups as the Georgia Woodwind Quintet, the Baylor University Woodwind Quintet, the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra Woodwind Quintet, and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Chamber Players. Her bassoon-percussion duo, Col Legno, has performed recitals and presented master classes at venues throughout the country. Pollard received her Doctor of Musical Arts and Master of Music degrees from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and a Bachelor of Music degree from Louisiana State University.
Janet Rarick has enjoyed a diverse career as an oboist/performer and educator that has traversed the worlds of symphony, opera, ballet and chamber music. Ms. Rarick’s career began in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. As a freelance musician, she was a founding member of the Aurora Wind Quintet, performing regularly in the Twin Cities and giving many programs for young people through the auspices of the Minnesota Orchestra. After moving to Houston, Ms. Rarick became Principal Oboist with the Texas Chamber Orchestra, and began a long association with the Houston Ballet and Houston Grand Opera Orchestras as a core member of these ensembles. She has performed at the Marlboro, Grand Teton, Kapalua and Park City summer festivals, and has been a regular recitalist at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music. As Associate Professor of Music Career Development at the Shepherd School of Music, Ms. Rarick coaches chamber music, teaches classes in professional development, performance skills, chamber music repertoire, and directs outreach activities. She administrates The Shepherd School’s Music Career and Skills Enhancement Courses, an innovative initiative for performance majors in the Master’s Degree Program. In addition, she is also director for JUMP, a student run and faculty mentored outreach program that offers concerts for school children in the Greater Houston area. Ms. Rarick developed and produced the Shepherd Careers Forum in 2007, a student centered conference that explored new directions in classical music performance. This groundbreaking event brought together students, faculty and administrators from sixteen of our nation’s top schools of music. Outcomes from the forum included a conceptual framework of recommendations for institutions of higher learning designed to help students meet the challenges of our 21st Century arts environment.
Kathleen Reynolds joined the College of Music at the University of North Texas as Professor of Bassoon and Woodwind Chamber Music Coordinator in the fall of 1995. In 2011, she became Coordinator of the Woodwind Area. She is Principal Bassoon of the Dallas Opera Orchestra and performs regularly with the Dallas Symphony, Fort Worth Symphony, and Chamber Music International. EcoClassics recorded her solo CD, Gems for Bassoon, with pianist Michele Levin and clarinetist Mitchell Lurie. Other recordings include performances with the Dallas Symphony, the Dallas Opera Orchestra, the Rochester Philharmonic, and the University of North Texas Wind Symphony. She has performed at the Peter Britt Music Festival (OR), the Fredericksburg Festival (VA), the New Hampshire Music Festival, and with members of the Muir String Quartet at the Montana Chamber Music Festival. Prior to her appointment at UNT, Professor Reynolds was a member of the Rochester Philharmonic for twenty-two years, and a faculty member at SUNY Geneseo, Nazareth College, Roberts Wesleyan College, and the Hochstein School of Music. Her solo performances include appearances with the Rochester Philharmonic, the Friends of Music Orchestra in Geneseo NY, the New Hampshire Music Festival, and the University of North Texas’s Wind Symphony, Symphony Orchestra, and Concert Orchestra. She is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of the Eastman School of Music, and studied with K. David Van Hoesen, Norman Herzberg, and Bernard Garfield.
Bassoonist Ann Shoemaker is known for her varied career as a soloist, chamber musician, orchestral player, and educator. She has given guest solo recitals at universities across the country, she has been featured with the Baylor University Symphonic Band, the InterHarmony International Music Festival orchestra, the Carolina Youth Symphony, the Colorado College Summer Music Festival orchestra and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro orchestra. Dr. Shoemaker was a founding member of the Relevents Wind Quintet, and has toured with the ensemble throughout the United States and Germany. She has also performed with the Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players, including concerts in Washington, D.C. and New York City. Dr. Shoemaker is currently Principal Bassoonist of the Shreveport (LA) and Waco (TX) Symphony Orchestras. She has previously held positions with the Greensboro, Salisbury and Hendersonville Symphony Orchestras (NC). She has performed often with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra (TX), the Charlotte, Winston-Salem, Asheville (NC), Greenville (SC) Symphony Orchestras, and the South Carolina Philharmonic. Dr. Shoemaker currently serves as Assistant Professor of Bassoon at Baylor University in Waco, TX and has previously been on faculty at Furman University, Davidson College, and the North Carolina School of the Arts. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Furman University, and a Master of Music degree from Yale School of Music, where she was awarded the Nyfenger Award for Outstanding Woodwind Performance. Dr. Shoemaker has additional training from numerous summer music festivals, including Aspen and Tanglewood. She recently completed her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where she was a Hayes Fellowship recipient. Her primary teachers include Michael Burns, Frank Morelli, Carol Lowe, and Kevin Hall. Dr. Shoemaker is a Fox Bassoon performing artist.
Staci A. Spring joined the music faculty at Stephen F. Austin State University in 2013 as Lecturer in Bassoon and Musicology. She held previous appointments in Abilene, TX at the McMurry, Hardin Simmons, and Abilene Christian Universities, where she taught courses in applied bassoon, music history, music appreciation, woodwind methods, and chamber music. A versatile musician, Spring performs regularly with several professional orchestras throughout Texas and Louisiana, and is a co-founder of the professional chamber ensemble Key City Winds. Passionate about creative programming and collaboration, she has performed numerous solo and chamber recitals, and recently performed a trio for bassoon and percussion at the 2013 International Double-Reed Society conference in Redlands, CA. She was a co-founder/pianist for the McMurry faculty jazz combo MCMJ, and now performs as a member of the Stone Fort Wind Quintet at SFA. Spring is originally from Chattanooga, TN, and began her bassoon studies in high school with Eric Anderson. She completed her undergraduate degree at Brevard College under David Kirby, and went on to earn dual masters degrees in Bassoon Performance and Historical Musicology at The Florida State University under the tutelage of bassoonist Jeffrey Keesecker and scholar Denise Von Glahn. She is currently completing a DMA in Bassoon Performance at the University of North Texas, where she studies with Kathleen Reynolds. As a Priddy Scholarship recipient at UNT, she completed a Graduate Academic Certificate in Arts Leadership in 2012. Spring was a winner of the 2013 Nicholas & Anna Ricco Ethics Award essay competition at the University of North Texas, as well as being awarded a 2012 Yamaha In-Residence Fellowship from the College Music Society. Other activities include interning with the City of Chattanooga’s Department of Education, Arts and Culture, publishing several biographical essays for Salem Press, presenting at College Music Society conferences in 2008 and 2013, attending and teaching for numerous music festivals and camps, and being selected for the 2009 and 2011 Banff Centre Master Classes with Frank Morelli. She is the Educator Liaison for the 2014 Meg Quigley Vivaldi Competition & Bassoon Symposium.
Greg A Steinke is the retired former Chair of the Departments of Art and Music (The Joseph Naumes Endowed Chair in Music) and Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies at Marylhurst University, Marylhurst, Oregon. He was also Associate Director, Ernest Bloch Music Festival (‘93–97) and Director of the Composers Symposium (‘90–97) (Newport, OR); Professor Steinke holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Oberlin Conservatory, a MM degree from Michigan State University, a MFA degree from the University of Iowa, and a Ph.D. from Michigan State University. He is the author of articles on new oboe literature and music composition; he has done the revisions to the Paul Harder Harmonic Materials in Tonal Music, 6, 7, 8, 9 & 10th ed., Basic Materials in Music Theory, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 & 12th ed., Bridge to Twentieth-Century Music, Rev. ed. for Prentice-Hall, and a revision to the Harder-Reed Basic Contrapuntal Techniques for Warner Bros. Pub.; an article, "Music for Dance: An Overview" in The Dance Has Many Faces, 3rd ed., Ed. by Walter Sorell, a cappella books. Holding membership in a number of professional organization, he has served as the National Chairman of the Society of Composers, Inc. (1988–97) and is currently national President of NACUSA (‘12–) and Board Member of NACUSA Cascadia. Professor Steinke is very active as a composer of chamber and symphonic music with a number of published/recorded works and performances across the United States and internationally, as well as a speaker on interdisciplinary arts and an oboe soloist specializing in contemporary music for oboe. His most recent composition honors include: Co-winner – ’10 of 5th NACUSA Texas Composition Competition for From ARMGART for Soprano and Piano. One of six finalists – ‘10 for RAM 2010 call for scores (for saxophone quartet) with IN MEMORIAM: SACACAGWEA Winner of Delta Omicron International Music Fraternity Composition Competition, ‘12. Second Place winner of Robert Avalon International Competition for Composers – ’12. Finalist in the America Prize in Composition Competition for (2012 Orchestra - Professional Division - All in a Moment's Time for Viola and Orchestra); 2013 Chamber Music - Professional Division – Expressions II for 2 Saxophones, Two Percussion and Piano) A winner 2012 Bassoon Chamber Music Composition Competition winner (SUSPENDED for Bassoon & Strings); Winner of Con Vivo's Composers Competition (NATIVE AMERICAN NOTES (Image Music VI) for String Quartet); OMTA Composer of the year 2012–13.
Between commutes around southern California, bassoonist-composer John Steinmetz has become fascinated with music’s ability to reach across lines of difference and animosity. He played with Camerata Pacifica’s Catholics and Protestants on tour in the two Irelands. He and the Apple Hill Chamber Players and guest Arab and Jewish musicians played John’s One and Many in Israel, Palestine, and Gaza. With the Santa Rosa Symphony he premiered his bassoon concerto, musically exploring human interdependence with the rest of nature. He wrote On My Way for the Keene Chamber Orchestra and 200 elementary school singers. Another KCO commission, Together, premiered in Jordan, with the Amman Symphony Orchestra joined by sixty beginning string players from elite schools and a refugee camp. Some of John’s compositions have parts for the audience (A Small Ceremony for bassoon, horn, and cello), and some confront real-world issues (War Scrap for piano trio and percussion, Fourteen Prayers for trombone). John’s music has been released on CDs from several different labels, and TrevCo publishes his double reed music, along with his new Boulder Bassoon Band Quartets, edited with Bill Douglas, of bassoon quartets by Josquin, Bach, and Mozart. Among John’s recent pieces are two commissioned by large consortia of players: Songs and Dances for oboe and bassoon and Three Pieces for ten winds. He is working on a new woodwind quartet. John’s love of laughter has led to comic pieces like The Monster that Devoured Cleveland and What’s Your Musical I.Q.? (A Quiz). He wrote the text for Tacet Art, bassoonist Dave Riddles' book of cartoons of studio musicians. Sometimes he mixes serious with funny: Possessed for cellist/narrator is a comedy with a pensive ending. John teaches bassoon at UCLA and serves on the board of Renaissance Arts Academy, a public school offering intensive arts training regardless of background or experience. He has written articles for Chamber Music and other publications. John and his multitalented wife Kazi Pitelka live in Altadena; they have two children. More information is at johnsteinmetz.org.
Maya Stone is a champion of music. She has commissioned and premiered several works by American composers, including William J. Lackey, Spencer Lambright, Paul Osterfield and Stephen Gorbos. Recent projects include solo bassoon in Black Gospel Music, which includes collaborating with composers Raymond Wise, Mark Lomax and William Menefield. She is honored to be a member of the Rushes Ensemble, which premiered and recorded Michael Gordon’s concert-length work for seven bassoons. The group recently toured Europe showcasing the work, and continues to bring the piece to notable venues. Dr. Stone gives recitals and master classes around the U.S. each year. She has been a member of the Sphinx Orchestra since 2008, and won Second Bassoon position with the Huntsville Symphony in 2007. She plays at the International Double Reed Society Conference, and performs regularly with orchestras around the southeast. Dr. Stone loves to teach and she maintains an active teaching schedule whether in the academic or private setting. She has held visiting professorships at the University of Missouri in Columbia and Bowling Green State University in Ohio. She has held the position of Assistant Professor of Bassoon at Middle Tennessee State University, and in 2004, she was Visiting Professor of Double Reeds at Austin Peay State University. Dr. Stone received a DMA in bassoon performance from the University of Texas at Austin in 2010, an MM in bassoon performance and woodwind specialty from Michigan State University in 2003, and a BM in music education from SUNY Potsdam in 2001. Her teachers include Kristin Wolfe Jensen, Barrick Stees, Michael Kroth and Frank Wangler. Maya just recently moved back to the southeast, and is thrilled to be living there again. She loves the green, rolling hills and mountains, and the crisp sun that is so prevalent in the region. For fun and recreation, Maya likes to dance salsa, run, and hang around nature and art.
Aura Marina Trevino, a bassoon soloist from Venezuela, is one of the founders of the internationally recognized music program known as "El Sistema." She now works as Bassoon Teacher and a Manager of International music affairs of the Latin-American Bassoon Academy in Caracas. A well-known freelance bassoonist in the South Florida area, Aura plays for several orchestras including Miami Symphony Orchestra, Symphony of the Americas, Florida Chamber Orchestra, Atlantic Classical Orchestra and Southwest Florida Symphony Orchestra. She received a Licentiate in Bassoon Teaching Diploma from the Royal Academy of Music in London, and a certificate of Advance Studies in Bassoon. She earned a master’s degree from the University of Miami then attended the DMA program of Boston University (ABD) where she studied with Richard Svoboda and Dr. Mathew Ruggiero. Her most recent appearances include the Second Chamber Music International Festival in Caracas, and the International Double Reed Society conference in Redlands, CA. As a bassoon instructor she worked at the Florida International University and with the Pembroke Pines Charter Schools System. In Texas, where she now resides, she works for the San Felipe Del Rio Consolidate Independent School District and the North Side Independent School district of San Antonio. Her teaching work has also reached South Texas Universities such as Sul Ross State University and South West Texas Junior College of Del Rio where she has giving several lecture performances and works as a Music Appreciation Instructor.
Colette Valentine has performed extensively throughout the United States and Asia, in such venues as New York City’s Merkin Concert Hall and Weill Recital Hall; the National Gallery and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.; Suntory Hall and Casals Hall in Tokyo; and Hoam Hall in Seoul. She has been featured as guest artist in chamber music concerts with the Left Bank Concert Society (D.C.), Meet the Composer (NY), St. Luke’s Chamber Ensemble, and the Grand Teton Music Festival, among others, and for many years toured and performed with her ensemble, Ecco Trio. Ms. Valentine serves as assisting pianist for numerous national and international competitions and events, including the William Kapell International Piano Competition, the Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition, the National Flute Association National Convention, and the Washington International Competition for Strings, and has collaborated on recordings for the Naxos, Albany, Antara, CRI, fontec, and Well-Tempered labels. She teaches and performs at the Interlochen Adult Chamber Music Camp each summer, and for many years, she taught at New Jersey City University and Long Island University/CW Post. In the fall of 2008, she moved from New York City to join the faculty of the newly created Collaborative Piano Department at the University of Texas at Austin’s Butler School of Music. Ms. Valentine received BM and MM degrees from the University of Maryland with Dr. Nelita True, and a DMA from Stony Brook University with Gilbert Kalish.
David A. Wells teaches bassoon at California State University, Sacramento. He earned his DMA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he studied with Marc Vallon; his dissertation is a history and discography of the bassoon in jazz. His previous teachers were Jeff Keesecker and Jeffrey Lyman. Wells is Principal Bassoon of the Sacramento Choral Society & Orchestra, the Townsend Opera, and the Merced Symphony, and freelances throughout northern California. He also plays bassoon, clarinet, and saxophone in the swing quintet Hot Club Faux Gitane. His past performance activities have varied widely, from renaissance and baroque music on period instruments (shawms, recorders, baroque bassoons and oboes) to avant-garde chamber music on electric bassoon. Wells has given world premieres of works by Stephen Blumberg, Bruce Rieprich, Thomas C. Lang, and Stephen Lewis, among others. In addition to his studio at CSU Sacramento, Wells is on faculty at San Joaquin Delta College and California State University, Stanislaus. He has taught at the Festival de Música de Santa Catarina in Jaraguá do Sul, Brazil as well as at the Sequoia and CalCap Chamber Music Workshops in Northern California. Wells holds an MA in Musicology from UW-Madison and is an active music scholar. He contributed eleven articles to the new second edition of The Grove Dictionary of American Music, has written CD liner notes for Nadina Mackie Jackson and Nicolasa Kuster, and has given papers at the conferences of the American Musicological Society and IDRS. He also writes on a variety of bassoon-related topics at davidawells.com.
Kim Woolly is Associate Professor of Bassoon at the University of Southern Mississippi. In addition to teaching bassoon, performance practice, and courses in woodwind literature and pedagogy, she performs as a member of Category 5, the faculty wind quintet. Dr. Woolly holds an undergraduate degree in music from Wellesley College, a Master of Music in bassoon performance and literature from the Eastman School of Music, and a Doctor of Music in bassoon performance from the Florida State University. A native of Little Rock, AR, Dr. Woolly is formerly a faculty member of Ohio University, the University of Florida and the New England Music Camp. Her teachers include John Hunt, Jeff Keesecker, and Isabelle Plaster. Dr. Woolly is a member of the Mobile (AL), Meridian (MS) and Mississippi Symphonies. She is formerly Principal Bassoon with the Gulf Coast Symphony Orchestra and a member of the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra. She also performed frequently with the Jacksonville Symphony and the Orlando Philharmonic, among others. Her performance credits include solo recitals at several Conferences of the International Double Reed Society and at the International Computer Music Conference, as well as performances and master-classes given in Brazil, Panama, Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, and Florida. She performed with the orchestras of the Tanglewood Music Festival, the Heidelberg, Germany Schlossfestspiele, and the Victoria Bach Festival, and has also participated in the festivals of Sarasota, Swannanoa, Chautauqua, Brevard, and Bowdoin.