- Dr. Shiho Vogel – School Director
- Maggie Schlageter – Group Piano; Office Manager
- Dr. José Beviá – Classical & Jazz Piano
- Wayne Weng – Piano
- Soo Yeon Cho – Piano
- Alex Valencia – Guitar: Classical, Jazz, Latin, Rock
- Euntaek Kim — Piano
- Sara Louise Petrocelli – Voice & Musical Theater
- Tina Chang-Chien – Violin & Viola
- Kristin Roney – Voice, Musical Theater & Theory
- Anna Keiserman – Piano
- Liza Marie Johnston Siegel – Voice, Musical Theater & Group Piano
- Dr. Robert Grohman – Piano
- Lisa Smith – Piano
- Jessica Walch – Voice & Musical Theater
- Jenna Myers-Kane – Kindermusik, Group Piano
- Margaret Ahn – Piano
- Robert Mellon – Voice & Musical Theater
- Chih-Tung Cheng – Piano
- Rob Keiser – Piano
- Kelly Powers – Classical & Jazz Piano
- Elli Murphy – Piano & Group Piano
- Dr. Soyeon Park – Piano
Dr. Shiho Vogel
Pianist, Dr. Shiho Vogel holds a Doctorate of Musical Arts degree in Piano Performance from Michigan State University under critically acclaimed pianist, Panayis Lyras, and Master of Music degree from Manhattan School of Music and Hunter College of City University of New York as a pupil of Miyoko Lotto, Arkady Aronov and late Constance Keene. Recipient of numerous honors and accolades such as the Margaret Rusk Griffiths/Kleist Music Scholarship, the Sophie Albrecht Piano Scholarship, the Cleveland Musical Arts Society Scholarship, Esther Hoffman Prize and Scholarship, and Dr. Benno Lee graduation award from the City University of New York., she has appeared as soloist and chamber musician in concert halls throughout North America and Japan.
The founding faculty member and executive Director of Lindeblad School of Music, Dr. Shiho Vogel balances her performance schedule with an active involvement in music education and piano pedagogy. She has served as a Commissioner on the Oswego’s Cultural Arts Committee (IL), an Academy Director at Fox River Academy of Music and Art (IL), and an Artistic Coordinator at Amati Music Festival (NY). She previously taught at Fox River Academy (IL), Michigan State University (MI), Amati Music Festival (NY), Amati Conservatory (NJ), Baldwin-Wallace College Conservatory Preparatory Department (OH), and Manhattan School of Music Summer program (NY) sponsored by ASCAP and the New York City Board of Education. As an adjudicator and clinician, she is invited to judge piano competitions for young artists as well as give lecture-recitals and master classes throughout USA and Japan. Her students have graduated to pursue music in leading Universities and Conservatories and have excelled at various competitions.
My teaching philosophy emphasizes the individuality of each student. I believe in providing students with the tools and skills that they can use to teach themselves. Through each learning process, I want students to gain a better understanding of self, learn work-efficiency, and expand their artistic personae. Piano learning should be a rewarding, fun, interesting, fulfilling, and exciting process. I am an enthusiastic teacher who believes in creating an environment in which students can learn. Throughout years of extensive teaching experience, I have helped students across a wide spectrum of levels, ages, nationalities, and backgrounds. I enjoy sharing my experience and musical ideas with students and colleagues.
Additional specialty: preparation for competition, college entrance audition, and music examinations (theory, piano, etc). I also welcome home-schooled students, adult students, and special needs students.
Group Piano Faculty; Office Manager
A native of New York, Maggie Schlageter began her piano study at the early age of 7, and has since studied with numerous world-renowned artists; Bob Hallahan (jazz piano), Marta Puig, Dmitri Shteinberg, Wayne Weng (classical piano), Doug Richards (composition, theory, and arranging), and Jeanai LaVita (voice).
Maggie has previously worked as the drama and dance director at Camp Columbus, an all ages day camp for individuals with special needs, and as the founder and director of the Richmond Chapel Choir.
With over 9 years of teaching experience Maggie has developed the ability to captivate and engage students; encouraging them on their path to individual musical success. Her teaching experience includes collaborating with the nGomusa Zulu gospel choir in Durban South Africa, and instructing private piano lessons in Hyderabad India, as well as leading children’s choirs and ensembles with as many as 120 non-English speaking children.
Maggie holds a Bachelor of Arts in Jazz Piano Studies and General Business from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Dr. José Beviá
Classical & Jazz Piano Faculty
José Beviá graduated from the Valencia Conservatory of Music where he studied classical piano with José Luis de Prado; Berklee College of Music, and Florida State University where he earned a Doctor of Music Degree in Music Theory and Composition. Dr. Beviá has studied composition with Ladislav Kubík and Mark Wingate, and jazz piano with Marcus Roberts and Bill Peterson. He has also participated in composition seminars with Pulitzer Prize winning composer Ellen Zwilich, jazz composer Bill Holman, and has been a member of the BMI Jazz Composers Workshop, where he studied with jazz composers Michael Abene, Jim McNeely, and Mike Holober. He has also attended the 2012 Jazz Composers Orchestra Institute Readings at UCLA and Columbia University, directed by George Lewis.
A Professor of Music at County College of Morris in Randolph, New Jersey, Dr. Beviá has seen his classical, jazz compositions, and arrangements performed by the Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra, the North Czech Philharmonic, Walter Boudreau and Orquesta Sinfónica del Estado de Michaocán, the American Composers Orchestra, the Sydney Contemporary Orchestra, Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, The BMI/ New York Jazz Orchestra, The Millennium Jazz Orchestra, Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, and the Count Basie Orchestra. His works have been commissioned by The Commission Project, the BMI Foundation Charlie Parker Composition Prize, Harpist Arielle, and Ferdiko Piano Duo. At the same time he has been invited to present his music at the 2005 North Sea Jazz Festival The Hague, The Netherlands; the 2008 International Jazz Composers Symposium in Tampa, Florida; the Society of Composers National Conference in Turlock, California; the College Music Society National Conference in Portland, Oregon; the College Music Society Regional Conference at the University of Vermont; the Florida State University Festival of New Music; the Czech American Music Summer Music Institute in Prague, Czech Republic, the CMS International Conference in Seoul, Korea, the 2013 American Composers Orchestra Jazz Composers Institute at the University of California LA, and the 2014 NYC Electro acoustic Music Festival. He has been composer in residence at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris, France; the Visby International Centre for Composers, Sweden; and a Visiting Artist and Scholar at the American Academy in Rome, Italy. The University of Northern Colorado Jazz Press publishes his compositions worldwide. In September 2009 Dr. Beviá released a C.D. of contemporary classical music with MSR recordings, featuring The Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra.
Dr. Beviá is the winner of the 2014 Robert Avalon International Competition for Composers in Houston, Texas, the 2011 Lee Ettelson Composer’s Award in San Francisco, California, the 2010 International Music Prize for Excellence in Composition in Neapolis, Greece, the 2007 BMI Foundation Charlie Parker Composition Prize in New York, and the 2006 University of West Florida Phillips Jazz Piano Competition; he is also finalist at the 2006 Brussels Jazz Orchestra International Composition Contest, the 2009 Artez International Composition Contest in The Netherlands, the 2014 International Composition Competition Cittá di Udine, the 2014 New York Composers Circle Competition, and Honorable Mention at the Minnesota Orchestra Composer Institute.
Winner of 2013 Iowa International Piano Competition, Pianist Wayne Weng’s playing has been described as “bold, vibrant, and immensely musical," and as having “delicacy amounting to almost reverence […] through gossamer touch." (Wiltshire Gazette & Herald) He has performed in Canada, the United States, England, France, Holland, Belgium, Austria, Serbia, Egypt, and Hong Kong, as a recitalist as well as a collaborative pianist. He has been featured as a soloist with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Victoria Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Seattle, and the Avanti Orchestra. He has also been heard on radio stations such as the WQXR New York, CBC Radio, and Seattle King FM.
Mr. Weng has won prizes at the Washington International Competition for Piano, Tunbridge Wells International Young Artists Competition, Haverhill Sinfonia Soloists Competition, Pacific Piano Competition, CBC Debut Concert Artists Auditions, and the Kingsville International Young Performers Competition. He has also been a recipient of the Solti Foundation Grant and the British Columbia Arts Council Senior Scholarship.
In addition to performing, he has served as an adjudicator at the Festival on the Lake in Vancouver and the International Chopin Youth Competition in Houston.
He has participated at such summer festivals as the U-HAC International, International Holland Music Sessions, International Keyboard Institute and Festival, TCU/Cliburn Piano Institute, Bowdoin International Music Festival, and Ecole d'Art Americaines in Fontainebleau, where he was awarded the Piano Prix.
Mr. Weng is currently pursuing the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the City University of New York Graduate Center, where he studies with Ursula Oppens. He has previously studied with Donna Fishwick, Sasha Starcevich, Natalya Antonova, Pavlina Dokovska, Joan Havill, and Peter Frankl. He holds degrees from the Eastman School of Music, Mannes College of Music, Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and Yale University.
Soo Yeon Cho
Ms. Soo Yeon Cho received both Bachelor of Music and Master of Music Degrees at The Juilliard School, 2004-2010 under the instruction of Robert McDonald. She is an honor graduate of the Peabody Preparatory in 2003. During her years at Peabody, she was the winner of many auditions and given opportunities to perform at various venues at the institution and other venues in the Washington D.C region. In the year 2003, she won the Concerto Competition and performed Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 3, celebrating the grand opening of the Miriam A. Friedberg Concert Hall. Upon her graduation with many scholarships and prizes, she was the fourth prize winner in the Missouri Southern International Piano Competition and first prize winner in the two-piano ensemble category in the New York Piano Competition. In 2009 she was named the 3rd prize winner of the Kingsville Young Performers Competition.
Ms. Cho was honored to receive a various scholarships that were provided by The Juilliard School such as Irene Diamond Scholarship and Vladmir Horowitz Scholarship during her 6 years of stay at The Juilliard School. She is an active solo pianist as well as an avid chamber musician. During summer of 2007 and 2008, she was invited to participate in Piano Masterclass Program in Banff and studied with Marc Durand, Julian Martin, and Robert McDonald and also gave a several public performance during her stay at Banff. Ms. Cho appeared in recitals at Paul Hall, The Juilliard School as a solo pianist and also chamber musician with her colleagues. She especially loves collaborating with a violinist. In 2009, she played with a violinist as a chamber ensemble under the instruction of Kyung Wha Chung and Jonathan Feldman.
Last November, she appeared with Rutgers Symphony Orchestra as a soloist after winning the concerto competition at Rutgers University where now she's pursuing her doctoral degree in piano performance, studying with Dr. Min Kwon.
Music is like a mirror image of the ones who create/play it. I believe that teaching music is not just about playing the right notes, right rhythms, or knowing music theory; it is about telling a story, communicating with your own voice. I teach students how to utilize his/her voice to deliver what's behind hundreds of music notes given in front of them. In order to succeed, I, myself, try to communicate with each one of my students, get to know them, and find what's needed for him/her - which varies from one individual to another.
I have taught many stuents of different ages who need help preparing competitions, auditions, performances, or etc but I'm always open to share with my passion and love of music with anybody who's willing to take this musical journey with me!
Guitar Faculty – Classical, Jazz, Latin, Rock
Alex began playing the guitar at the age of thirteen. He was accepted to the Academia Superior de Artes de Bogotá in Colombia in 1999 where he received extensive training in Latin American Music. Alex spent several years performing across the USA both as a soloist and an ensemble musician. He has been granted numerous scholarships including the School of Visual and Performing Arts Scholarship, the David Movshow Memorial Music Scholarship, and the Wilf Family Scholarship. In addition, Alex won first prize in the ASTA/NJ 2007 String Competition in the senior division.
Alex Valencia received his degree in Guitar Performance with the highest honors, from Kean University in New Jersey, where he studied under Christopher Kenniff. After his graduation, Alex moved to Chicago to study with world-renowned guitarist Denis Azabagic. Alex has also performed in master classes for guitarists such as Jason Viauex, and Kevin Gallaguer.
With more than 12 years of teaching experience, Alex is extremely versatile, instructing in diverse areas ranging from Latin music to jazz and Classical. He has extensive experience in preparing students for performances, auditions, and Carnegie-Hall Royal Conservatory of Music Examinations, along with instructing students in improvisation, comping, and ensemble music. While teaching at Fox River Academy in Chicago, Alex helped develop their music theory program and taught pre-college theory in addition to his guitar studio.
Pianist Euntaek Kim, native of Incheon, South Korea, has established himself as one of the most promising young talents of his generation. Hailed by the New York Times as “nimble,” and “colorful,” and by La Libre Belgique as "sovereign,” and “luminous," Mr. Kim won prizes from many prestigious competitions, the 2001 Oberlin International Competition and the 2002 International Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians, among many others.
Mr. Kim has appeared at numerous major venues around the world, such as the Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, the Steinway Hall, the Museum of Modern Art, the Kumho Art Hall in Seoul, South Korea, the Brown Theatre in Louisville, KY, the Cullen Theatre at the Wortham Theater Center in Houston, TX, the Neurosciences Institute in La Jolla, CA and the Benedict Music Tent in Aspen, CO, to name a few. He has appeared as a soloist with several orchestras around the world, including the Xiamen Philharmonic in China, the Korean National University of Arts Chamber Orchestra in South Korea, the Lexington Philharmonic, Dubuque Symphony Orchestra and the Louisville Youth Orchestra in the United States, among many others.
A frequent guest in major summer music festivals, Mr. Kim has been present in Aspen Music Festival and School, Music Academy of the West, and Kneisel Hall Chamber Music Festival. He has also been an active chamber musician, collaborating with Bonita Boyd, Phillip Ying, Jerome Lowenthal, and Itamar Zorman, to name a few.
Mr. Kim began his piano studies at four and, at age eleven, entered the Pre-College Division of Korean National University of Arts. Mr. Kim is also an alumnus of the Yewon Art School, one of the most prestigious art schools in South Korea. In 2001, He moved to New York and soon began his studies at Juilliard's Pre-College Division under a full scholarship. Mr. Kim currently holds the Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from The Juilliard School, and the Artist Diploma from the Yale School of Music, and has studied with Jerome Lowenthal and Boris Berman.
Sara Louise Petrocelli
Voice & Musical Theater Faculty
Sara Louise Petrocelli, mezzo soprano from New Jersey, has over 10 years experience as a private vocal instructor and foreign language coach. She has performed with opera companies throughout the United States and Europe, and most recently joined the chorus of the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Purchase College Conservatory of Music and a Master of Music degree from Carnegie Mellon University, with a minor in Italian Studies completed at the University of Pittsburgh. While Sara’s performance career has focused on classical vocal repertoire and opera, she has studied and taught extensively in all genres of music, spanning Musical Theatre, jazz, sacred music, and pop. She is qualified to teach musical style and singer’s diction in English, Spanish, Italian, German, Latin, French, Russian and Czech.
Sara’s voice students have been accepted to prestigious institutions such as Westminster Choir College and Manhattan School of Music. She has extensive experience preparing students for successful auditions for the NJ All-State Chorus and Bergen County Chorus.
In addition to teaching privately, Sara maintains an active performance schedule. She was most recently seen on stage as Beppe in Mascagni’s L’Amico Fritz with Winter Opera St. Louis. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch said, “In the trouser role of Beppe, mezzo-soprano Sara Louise Petrocelli was a standout in both the singing and acting departments.” In the 2014-2015 season she was also seen at the Metropolitan Opera in Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg under the baton of Maestro James Levine, and as the title role in Carmen with Western Plains Opera. She was also invited to join the Metropolitan Opera Guild’s performance series under the direction of Jane Marsh to sing excerpts of Charlotte from Werther. Additionally, Sara has been seen on stage with Tulsa Opera, Sarasota Opera, the Caramoor Festival, Opera Company of Middlebury, Opera Saratoga, Natchez Opera, New Rochelle Opera, the Szeged National Theater of Hungary, the Teatro Comunale di Milano, and the National Lyric Opera among others.
Sara was named a district winner in the 2012 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. In July 2010, she received the Grand Prize in the International Concorso Lirico in Arquata Scrivia, Piemonte, and she is the recipient of a 2007 Career Grant from the Anna Sosenko Assist Trust. She garnered awards from the 2005 Young Singers’ Foundation, the 2007 Queens Opera Vocal Competition, and the Carnegie Mellon Concerto Competition as the soloist in Ravel’s Shéhérazade.
This Fall Sara returns to Opera Company of Middlebury to sing Dido in Dido & Aeneas. She is also scheduled to appear again in May 2016 with the Metropolitan Opera Guild’s Masterly Singing series on a program of Mozart and Salieri. Sara currently serves as cantor for Epiphany Church in Cliffside Park, and frequently visits other churches throughout Bergen County as a guest cantor and special event vocalist. She and her husband, baritone Chad Armstrong, make their home in Englewood, New Jersey.
Violin & Viola Faculty
Tina Chang-Chien is an active music educator and performer with over 25 years of experience in the music industry. Ms. Chang-Chien’s education background includes the Juilliard School and Manhattan School of Music. She made her Carnegie Hall debut when she was just 17 years old. As an active performer based in New York City, she gives concerts regularly at Avery Fisher Hall, Alice Tully Hall, and Carnegie Hall. She is a member of the Grammy-winning Albany Symphony Orchestra, who collaborates and performs with such artists as Joshua Bell, Cho-Liang Lin, and Yo-Yo Ma. Ms. Chang-Chien was featured as the principal violist with the Albany Symphony when they performed in Carnegie Hall in 2013. Outside of classical music concerts, she has performed with such artists as Gloria Estefan, John Legend, Patii LaBelle, Kenny G., and Carlos Santana at the 2008 Latin Grammys in Houston, TX.
A passionate advocate for her love of music, Ms. Chang-Chien actively participated in pedagogy courses and workshops in college, and taught violin classes for educational outreach program for under-privileged students at the Children’s Storefront in East Harlem, NY. She also coached students at the Manhattan School of Music Pre-College Orchestra in helping them to learn their assigned music. She was invited to the North Carolina Governor’s School in Winton-Salem, NC as a teaching artist in 2011. In 2013, she was invited to be an adjudicator for N.Y.S.S.M.A. to evaluate the elementary students’ violin and viola performances.
Voice, Musical Theater & Music Theory Faculty
Kristin Roney, mezzo-soprano, recently relocated to the New York area from Phoenix, Arizona. Recent highlights include Mrs. Segstrom (A Little Night of Music) with Light Opera of New Jersey, Idamante (Idomeneo) with Cantanti Project, Zulma (L’italiana in Algeri) with Utopia Opera, Duruflé Requiem alto soloist with Immaculate Conception Concert Series, and guest recital artist for Immaculate Conception Winter Recital Series. This past summer she also performed with the New York Philharmonic as a chorister for their production of Honegger's Joan of Arc at the Stake. Last spring, she performed at Carnegie Hall in the world premiere of Ola Gjeilo’s Dream Weaver with Manhattan Chorale, with whom she has performed the last two seasons. Other roles include Dryad (Ariadne auf Naxos) with Manhattan Opera Studio, and Bradamante (Alcina) for New York Lyric Opera.
She earned her Master's degree in Opera Performance from Arizona State University. While at ASU, she performed the role of Florence (Albert Herring) and Cherubino (Le Nozze di Figaro) with Lyric Opera Theatre. Additionally, she covered the roles of “Stephano”, “Suzuki”, “Kate Pinkerton”, and “Orfeo” through the joint AZ Opera/ASU Study Cover program. Before leaving Arizona, she made her professional debut with the Phoenix Symphony. She received her B.M. in Vocal Performance from Willamette University in Salem, Oregon.
Kristin has maintained an active voice studio since 2009. In lessons, Ms. Roney offers instruction on various aspects of singing and piano. She tailors her approach to meet the individual needs of each student through the study of healthy vocal technique, musicality, and interpretation of song. She is dedicated to helping students develop strong technical foundations through age appropriate repertoire and vocal production.
Anna Keiserman, born in Ekaterinburg, Russia, began her piano studies at the age of 5 in Volgograd music school, Russia. By the time she completed her studies she had received many national awards. She played her first recital at the age of 14. At the age of 15 she made her debut with Volgograd Symphony National Orchestra.
She continued her professional education in Volgograd Serebriakov College in 1997. She is a winner of several national and international competitions including 2nd prize National Chamber music competition Volgograd 2001, 1st prize on International Piano competition of Young musicians Volgograd 2002, 2nd prize of International Piano Competition Saratov 1999, semifinalist of International Russian Music Competition, San Hose 2010, semifinalist of Ima Hogg International Concerto Competition, Houston, TX 2011.
Anna holds a Bachelor and Master’s degree from Moscow State Academy of Music by the name of Gnessins where she studied with Professor Vladimir Tropp. Vladimir Tropp describes her as a pianist who is playing “extraordinary-elegant, intelligent, and acutely sensitive... her warm legato hints at a string player's sensibility… Bright, free running and spontaneous...”
During her studies she actively participated in the concert life of Gnessins Academy, performing as a soloist and a chamber musician. She graduated from Moscow Gnessins State Academy with a repertoire which includes variety of solo programs and 10 concertos for piano and orchestra. She has toured worldwide as a soloist and a chamber musician in such countries as the United States, Italy, Russia, Ukraine, has performed as a soloist on the television and on the radio in Russia. Her recital programs are a combination of baroque, classical, 19th century and contemporary works. She has always been fascinated by the connections between architecture and music.
After graduation from the Moscow State Academy of Music she was invited to study at the University of Minnesota with Doctor Alexander Braginsky. She was a winner of the concerto competition in 2012 and performed Beethoven 3rd Concerto under the baton of Doctor Mark Russel Smith. She finished her Master degree in Piano Performance in May 2013 from the University of Minnesota. NYU Steinhardt School of Music and Art, New York, granted Anna with the position of the adjunct faculty piano instructor starting from September 2013. She is currently studying with the Professor Eteri Andjaparidze. She is actively performing in New York, including Bellevue Hospital Concert in memory of the September 11th, box office theatre of NYU, and Columbia University faculty house concert series, Steinway Hall. Anna’s expressive playing and extraordinary musicianship has led her to perform at many important concerts and venues in USA. She also serves as a stuff accompanist for the Mason Gross School of Music, Rutgers University.
Anna has participated in numerous festivals around the world, including IKIF (New York 2008, 2009, 2010), received full scholarship for studying in the Round Top festival (Texas, 2012), New Paltz Piano Summer (2014). She has participated in numerous master classes and workshops studying under Victor Rosenbaum, Jerome Rose, Dmitry Rachmanov, Eduard Zilberkant, Tamas Ungar, and Joaquin Achucarro.
Liza Marie Johnston Siegel
Voice, Musical Theater & Group Piano Faculty
Liza Marie Johnston received a Master's degree in Music Education from New York University and a Bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from Baldwin-Wallace College Conservatory. She also holds a New York State Teaching Certificate in Music. Liza began her performance career at the age of thirteen when selected as a cast member in an elite performance ensemble that toured throughout the US as well as internationally. As an accomplished singer-songwriter, she frequently performs her original work in the East Village of Manhattan. She also plays piano, ukulele, violin, and guitar.
Liza has worked as a professional vocalist and musical theater actress in the U.S. and abroad for more than 10 years. Highlights of her past roles include originating the role of “Mary-Kate” in the Misadventures of Mary-Kate and Ashley, staring as “Jeanie” in the Off-Broadway production of Hair in the Downtown Cabaret, and touring with Clifford the Big Red Dog Live, as “Emily-Elizabeth” on the National Tour.
Her concert appearances include, the 20th Annual Holocaust Memorial Concert at St. John the Divine Cathedral NY as well as a soloist in “A Night with Rogers and Hammerstein” with The Cleveland Pops at Severance Hall. Liza is an original and current member of the New York University Singers Chamber Ensemble.
Liza has had the privilege of opening the door into the world of music for her students in many capacities. Previously, Liza has held positions as an instructor of music, voice, dance and musical theater at the Museum School, P.S. 333, James Madison High School (choir and musical theater), Stagecrafters and Beachwood Drama and Musical Theater, and served as a resident choreographer and theater school instructor of jazz, drama, and musical theater at Beachwood Community Theater.
A pure love of music lies at the very heart of Liza’s teaching philosophies. It is this love of music and song and dance that compels her to create and share musical experiences with all of the students she has an opportunity to work with.
Dr. Robert Grohman
Pianist Robert Grohman has been praised for his artistry and musical sensitivity and enjoys an active career as a soloist and chamber musician. New York Times music critic James Oestreich wrote of his most recent Carnegie Hall performance, “Robert Grohman stood out among the players.” His other recent performances have included solo recitals and chamber concerts in Washington, DC, New York City, and New Brunswick, NJ, as well as an appearance as soloist with the Vienna International Orchestra, where his original cadenza for Mozart’s Piano Concerto in C Major, K.467 was hailed by conductor Robert Lehrbaumer as “the best cadenza for this concerto that I have ever heard.” Other recent concert engagements have taken him from a live performance on Chicago’s WFMT Radio to two appearances in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall.
Mr. Grohman received his Doctorate of Musical Arts degree from Rutgers University, where he won the Irene Alm Memorial Prize for excellence in scholarship and performance, as well as the Music Department Award for excellence in performance. Most recently, he won the Rutgers Seminar Paper Prize for his article, “Not the Slightest Reverberation – Did Mozart’s fortepiano lack knee levers?” He had previously received a merit scholarship to attend the Mannes College of Music where he earned his Master of Music degree. His principal teachers have included Pavlina Dokovska, James Giles, Min Kwon, and Jeffrey Cohen. He has also worked closely with other teachers including Daniel Epstein, Jacob Lateiner, and J.Y. Song and has performed in masterclasses led by teachers including Jerome Lowenthal and Boris Slutsky. His studies have taken him to numerous summer festivals, the Manhattan School of Music, New Jersey Performing Arts Center, the University for Music and Performing Arts in Vienna, and Northwestern University, from which he holds both a Bachelor in Music and Bachelor of Arts degree in Math cum laude.
Making music is one of the most enjoyable, thought-provoking, and fulfilling pursuits that one can undertake. Music is both a deep art form, capable of conveying the entirety of the human experience in sound, as well as a form of universal entertainment. Through the piano, my students learn to express themselves through sound, explore their imagination, and challenge themselves to develop into musical artists. In piano lessons we will work on the skills necessary to becoming a musician and gain an understanding of how to create music, both from the printed score and from students’ own invention. My goal is to to help students find their own unique voice and their love for making and sharing music.
On a weekly basis, lessons will be both challenging and fun, as students will: Develop music-reading skills in order to play music from the score, work to understand and play with musicality and expressiveness, refine technical proficiency in order to control the instrument, study music theory to understand how music works, and train the ear to aurally identify musical patterns and qualities. Additional exercises will include improvisation and composition drills, listening exercises, and performance etiquette.
Lisa Smith has 28 years of piano teaching experience. She is a member of the New Jersey Federation of Music Teachers and Pompton Valley Music Teachers Association.
Since joining in 1997, her students have received superior ratings in the NJ Federation at William Paterson University each year.
Her classical training began at the age of four under the direction of Irwin Buchner. From the age of 13 to receiving her Master's of Music degree she studied extensively with Juilliard-trained teachers. During this time she was a National Member with superior ratings in the Guild Auditions, held superior ratings in the MEA Competitions and was the winner of Outstanding Artistic Achievement award for Montclair State College.
Being a mother of four, she possesses a great understanding and compassion for her students and it is her goal to extend her knowledge and love of music to each child she teaches.
She is a skilled teacher in the Alfred, Bastien, and Faber method as well as the Baroque, Classical, and Romantic genres. She holds a Bachelor's of Music from Montclair State College and a Master's of Music from Montclair State University.
Voice & Musical Theater Faculty
Soprano Jessica Walch is a versatile emerging young artist and voice teacher. She recently graduated from Montclair State University with a Master’s in Vocal Performance. In both 2013 and 2014, Jessica was recognized by the Continuo Arts Foundation's Minuetto Music Festival as an Emerging Artist Award Winner. Earlier this year, she was seen in Disney’s production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame at the Paper Mill Playhouse. Other recent performance credits include Angelica in Handel’s Orlando, Josephine in HMS Pinafore, Lady Saphir in Patience, Nursing Sister & Alms Sister in Suor Angelica, Edith in Pirates of Penzance, and Violet Hilton in Side Show. She has worked with such opera and theater companies such as Light Opera of New York, Ridgewood Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Co., Garden State Opera, New York Lyric Opera, Stony Hill Players, and the Montclair State University and Muhlenberg College performance ensembles. She is a member of the Continuo Arts Foundation Civic Chorale and professional choir Sonare. She is a Grammy-nominee for her vocals on an Americana/Roots album by Savior Soul called Cast Your Bread. In the summer of 2014 she attended a professional development opera intensive called Opera Ischia with voice teacher Michael Paul. In 2010 she participated in the Manhattan School of Music Summer Voice Festival and studied with Neil Rosenshein. Jessica received her Bachelor’s degree from Muhlenberg College with a double major in Vocal Performance and Communications.
She has been teaching voice for the past several years to students of all ages and is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing.
Jenna Myers-Kane holds a degree in both music and theatre with a concentration in vocal performance from Ramapo College. She has been fortunate enough to study under mezzo-soprano Dr. Lisa Lutter and bass-baritone Mark Moliterno. She has sung in competitive choirs and won competitions around the world including the International Festival of Academic Choirs in the Czech Republic. Jenna has a background in piano and guitar and has sung a classical recital. She has played numerous leading roles in both musical theatre and other dramatic and comedic works, including Annie Get Your Gun (Annie), One Touch of Venus (Gloria), Bernstein on Broadway (Maria) and The Taming of the Shrew (Bianca). Jenna successfully programmed, staged and performed, Simply Sondheim and all Sondheim Cabaret.
Jenna Myers-Kane is also a business owner and has much experience in business management and consulting. She is the owner and operator of My Gym Princeton where she teaches children ages 6 months to 10 years of age on a weekly basis. Jenna is a licensed Kindermusik teacher and teaches all Kindermusik with Miss Jenna classes. She sincerely loves music and teaching children.
Miss Jenna has over 8 years of teaching experience especially in the education of children under 3 years old. Miss Jenna believes that it is truly a gift to be an educator of young children. It is extremely important to her that all children feel comfortable and successful in her programs. She feels that praising the child for every milestone whether small or large is so important to development and self-esteem. Miss Jenna also prides herself on the connection she makes with each and every student. She works tirelessly to lay the groundwork for further music education as the child grows and hopes to instill a life long love of music in each child she teaches.
Margaret began playing piano at the age of 4 at her native country South Korea and began winning major music competitions from the age 6. She won several major competitions in Korea including Teachers College, Ye-Won, Horugel, and Wol-gan music competitions. At the age of 12, she won the grand prize at Ihwa national music competition, which is one of the most prestigious music competitions in Korea.
She came to the U.S. to study at the Juilliard School at the age of 13, and began her studies with Ms. Jane Carlson at the Juilliard pre-college as a scholarship student. She went on to study with world renowned pianists Abbey Simon and Gyorge Sandor obtaining a bachelors degree in piano performance from the Juilliard School. She won many competitions in the U.S. including The Juilliard Pre-College Concerto competition, Arnold Bullock Piano competition, and Ima Hogg Young Artist competition.
Margaret performed as a soloist with orchestras such as The Juilliard Orchestra at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center and the Seattle Symphony Orchestra. When she performed Saint-Saens Piano Concerto Number 2 with the Seattle Symphony orchestra at the Seattle Opera House she received a full house standing ovation that lasted for 10 minutes.Critics raved her performance as powerful yet poetic and called her the rising star.
She made many recital appearances throughout the U.S. and south-east Asia including Hong-Kong and Japan. She also made her recital debut at the Hindemith House in Switzerland and in Vienna, Austria.
Margaret has been an active musician and a music educator over the years, serving as a piano faculty at Indian Hill Music School in Massachusetts, Lexington Christian Academy, Grace Chapel School of Creative Arts, and Mason Gross extension division at Rutgers University.
Margaret believes she is a more compassionate teacher and a musician after becoming a parent and has been focusing on nurturing students with love and care.
Voice & Musical Theater Faculty
American baritone Robert Mellon is a native of Long Island, New York. Mr. Mellon was a 2015 Gerdine Young Artist with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis and a 2015 young artist with PORT opera in Portland, Maine. A graduate of Manhattan School of Music with a masters degree in music performance along with an undergraduate degree in music education from SUNY Potsdam, Mr. Mellon performs regularly along with maintaining a steady schedule for teaching. Operatic credits include Gianni Schichi (Gianni Schicchi), Sam (Trouble in Tahiti), Falstaff (Falstaff), Figaro (Le nozze di Figaro), Escamillo (La tragédie de Carmen), Angelotti (Tosca), and Don Alfonso (Cosi fan tutte). Mr. Mellon studies voice with world renown musical theatre star Ron Raines.
Fun + Learning = Positive Assessment. This is the equation that I use in my everyday teaching. Without a balance of fun and learning there is no way to get a fair assessment of the students learning. My teaching focuses on creating an even Italianate sound with strong, low breathing as a foundation. This technical balance enhances all singing whether that be pop, jazz, musical theatre or classical singing. I make it clear that singing is not difficult; we've just forgotten how easy it is. My goal as a teacher is to give each of my students the tools to be successful both as a musician and a person.
Chih-Tung Cheng is a pianist from Taiwan. Since her move to New York City in 2005 to pursue further music study, she gave recitals in Mannes Music College and the CUNY Graduate Center, as well as solo performances in the places such as The Goethe-Institute New York, Consulate of the Republic of Poland, Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church, and Jazz at Lincoln Center. She also premiered the pieces by brilliant young composers, such as Ines Thiebaut and David Bridge. Chih-Tung’s own composition, three preludes, will be premiered by herself in March, 2013 in GUNY Graduater. Chih-Tung has special love for J.S. Bach’s music. She was invited to give recitals with All-Bach program in Taipei Artist Village and Taipei Cultural Center Wen-Shan Branch construction; the programs include J.S.Bach’s Well-tempered Clavier Book One and keyboard suites. During the years of studying in New York City, Chih-Tung’s interest in J.S. Bach’s keyboard works leaded her to explore early music on period instrument and had learned harpsichord with known harpsichordists Arthur Haas. Chih-Tung played the harpsichord in the Baroque ensembles in Mannes Music College and CUNY Graduate Center, where she was coached by renowned Bach-scholar Raymond Erickson.
As a chamber musician, she has collaborated with musicians such as Bonnie Mcalvin, William McNally, I-Ting Huang, Mary Hubbell, Danya Katok, and Emily Egan. Her interest expand to ballet music as well; she worked closely with choreographers Lance Westergard and Rachael Kosch in the New York Theatre Ballet School as a piano accompanist.
Chih-Tung enjoys teaching piano. She believes the goal of piano instruction is to help students not only learn how to play, but also how to think and develop their personality through musical learning. Chih-Tung received musical studies on performance and composition/music theory as well as professional educational training during the years in National Taiwan Normal University. She is a certificated high school teacher qualified by The Ministry of Education in Taiwan and taught music class in National Sun Yat-Sen University Affiliated High School from 2003-2005 in Taiwan. She has been an active piano instructor in New York City since 2006 and currently is a member of piano faculty in Piano School of New York.
Chih-Tung holds a B.M from National Taiwan Normal University, M.M. and PS.D from Mannes College for Music. She is currently a DMA student in CUNY Graduate Center, pursuing a dissertation on the topic on Beethoven’s late piano music. Ms. Cheng’s major teachers include Yu-Chen Lin, Lina Yeh, Edward Aldwell, and Thomas Sauer.
Mr. Rob Keiser received his Bachelors in Music in piano performance from Ithaca College, winning the prestigious Mary Hayes North Piano Competition Award in 2008. He received his Masters of Arts in piano performance form Hunter College, CUNY, winning their coveted concerto competition in 2012 for his performance of Liszt’s Totentanz. Mr. Keiser is busy as a performer in New York and New Jersey, most recently playing several recitals at the CUNY Graduate Center in Manhattan, where he is studying to receive his Doctorate degree.
He has extensive experience collaborating with vocalists and instrumentalists, most recently performing a recital with a vocalist at the CUNY Graduate Center. Mr. Keiser is currently teaching as an adjunct lecturer at Hunter College, where he teaches several theory, piano, and musicianship classes, along with private students. Mr. Keiser has been the musical director in several off-Broadway shows and continues to partner many vocalists and instrumentalists as collaborative pianist. Summer festival appearances include Italy’s Adriatic Chamber Music Festival in 2009 and the Brevard Music Festival in 2010. He is a student of Geoffrey Burleson at the Graduate Center.
I believe music is simply a language through which we express our deepest thoughts and emotions. Through my teaching I make sure to maintain, above all else, the individuality of the student. When playing music the performer must not only tell the composer’s story, but also must tell his or her own story. I try to get to know my students on a personal level, along with challenging them musically and intellectually. I encourage each student to consciously think about the musical choices they make, from the finest detail to the overall picture. When teaching young students I try to encourage a technique that will help them accomplish everything possible in their playing when they become advanced.
Classical & Jazz Piano Faculty
Kelly Powers is a pianist, composer and improviser based in New York City. She graduated magna cum laude from Jackie McLean’s Institute for Jazz Studies at the Hartt School of Music, University of Hartford. She also received her Master’s degree in Jazz Performance from Manhattan School of Music. She has released two original albums including The Kelly Powers Trio (feat. Grammy-nominated drummer Kendrick Scott) and The Kelly Powers Project (co-produced by Harold Mabern, with all tracks composed and/or arranged by Kelly). She has many years experience playing with big bands and small jazz groups. Highlighted performances include: tours with the Artie Shaw Orchestra and Cab Calloway Orchestra, Bjorkestra at the Regattabar and Kelly Powers Quartet featuring trumpeter Jeremy Pelt at Smoke Jazz Club (NYC). She has also performed with all-female bands (featuring Sharel Cassity and Linda Oh) at the annual Women in Jazz Festivals at the Zinc Bar.
Kelly has maintained a private piano studio for thirteen years: most recently as jazz piano instructor at Swarthmore College and as Head of Keyboard Department at the True School of Music in Mumbai, working with students on improvisation and founding the school’s first ever jam session. Also, while abroad, she performed at the Mahindra Blues Festival for audiences of 3000 people, opening for the Grammy Award winner Derek Trucks.
My goal as a teacher is to cultivate real, noticeable growth for each of my students. I accomplish this with a friendly yet disciplined learning approach, in which I provide my students with the environment to follow their creative passions while guiding them on the fundamentals of piano. In short, I supply the structure that best promotes each student's progress, by teaching them essential listening techniques, rhythm structures and stylistic approaches. With this arsenal of lasting skills, each of my students, hobbyists and aspiring professionals alike, can appreciate and experience music as a lifelong journey.
Ms. Elli began her piano studies at the age of five. Her first teaching experiences consisted of teaching applied music theory as an undergraduate teaching assistant at Western Washington University, where she completed a B.M. in piano performance on scholarship. Upon graduation, Elli was accepted into the U.S. Navy Band as one of seven keyboard instrumentalists in the entire Navy Fleet Band program. During those years, she toured with Navy Band Great Lakes’ Wind Ensemble, Jazz Big Band, Jazz Diplomats Combo, and also performed as a solo pianist.
Upon completion of her Naval service, Elli completed a M.S. in Music Education (all grade levels) from Long Island University and became a New York State certified music teacher. During her time in Long Island, NY, she has served as a full-time faculty at a community music school in Northport, NY for three years, and also enjoyed maintaining a private teaching studio. Her students’ ages have ranged from three through adults. She considers herself to be a lifelong learner and is committed to dedicating her life to becoming the best musician and educator she can possibly be. She continues to perform as a collaborative pianist throughout the Greater NYC area, and studies privately with concert pianist Yuri Kim.
Elli Murphy has a passion for working with young children, ages three to six. She connects with her students by entering their worlds and figuring out what excites them. This allows her to tailor analogies and choose developmentally appropriate piano games, with respect to the musical concepts being taught. She continuously strives to create a comfortable atmosphere where laughter and learning take place at each lesson.
Dr. Soyeon Park
Pianist Soyeon Park has performed in the United States, Canada, and South Korea as a soloist and chamber musician. She has performed concertos with the Hope College Symphonette, Hope College Wind Symphony, Orchestra of St. Vincent and the Good Samaritan Symphony Orchestra. As a chamber musician, she has collaborated with many artists, such as violinist Charles Castleman, Er-Gene Kahang and members of Grand Rapids Symphony. She has also presented performances at Lincoln Center, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Northwestern University, Bradley University, Hope College, Gustavus Adolphus College, Aspen Music Festival, and Las Vegas Music Festival. She has presented at ISMTA conference on “Comprehensive Approaches to Teaching Harmonization” in 2014.
Soyeon Park received a bachelor's degree in music from the Juilliard School under Herbert Stessin. She went on to receive a master of music in piano performance with pedagogy emphasis, and a graduate performance diploma from the Peabody Conservatory of Music under Ann Schein and Marian Hahn. At Northwestern, she received a doctor of music degree in piano performance under Alan Chow, Marcia Bosits, and Karen Kan-Walsh. Dr. Park taught private lessons in the Northwestern Music Academy and keyboard skills classes in the Bienen School. In addition, she is an active chamber musician and adjudicator in Chicago area and is a member of MTNA. She also serves as a piano faculty at the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp during the summer.