Our faculty includes recording artists and international performers, many who have multiple graduate degrees and perform several musical styles or instruments. In addition, our faculty provides music instruction in a variety of musical forms, including classical, jazz, pop, and world music.
Pampa Rotolo | Early Childhood Program Coordinator
Pampa is a musician and educator with a background in ethnomusicology, early childhood education and arts administration. She has worked with students of all ages in schools and cultural institutions in Boston, Washington, DC and New York.
Pampa presently works with students in Cambridge and Boston Public Schools as a lead teacher at the New School of Music Ensemble Workshop and a Teaching Artist with Young Audiences Massachusetts. Pampa has served on the faculty of Conservatory Lab Charter School, Capital City Public Charter School, The Tremont School, The Franklin Montessori School and collaborated with the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress, The U.S. Holocaust Museum, The deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum and the Smithsonian Institute.
Pampa holds a B.A. in Music from Oberlin College with a concentration in Music History and Theory and an Introductory Credential in Dalcroze Education (Level I). She is currently continuing her Dalcroze studies through the Dalcroze Society of America Teacher Training (T2 Program). Pampa plays piano and sings and has performed with a diverse collection of ensembles ranging from the Cathedral Choral Society at the National Cathedral to local Latin American folk ensembles.
Pampa is committed to social justice through education and the arts. Originally from Buenos Aires, Pampa brings a global perspective to her teaching and is Spanish-English bilingual. When not in the classroom you can find her spending time with her family or playing clarinet with her favorite local street band, School of Honk.
Jeffrey Charland | Guitar/Bass
Jeffrey Charland is a musician and private lesson instructor who resides in Brighton, MA and performs and teaches in the surrounding area. Jeffrey earned a Bachelor of Music degree in 1992 from Berklee College of Music where he studied with renowned guitarist Jon Damian. After graduating from Berklee he took up independent study of the double bass and is now an in-demand bassist around the Boston area. He is the regular bassist in a variety of ensembles including Charlie Kohlhase’s Explorers Club, Gill Aharon Trio, Daniel Rosenthal Quintet, Clear Audience, The Blue Ribbons, and also does a varied array of freelance work. Jeffrey has performed in a variety of settings including the MDC Hatch Shell, Montreal Jazz Festival, Ryles Jazz Club, and on public radio station WGBH.
Tyler Cotner | Ukulele
“Music, more than anything else, is play. That’s why, when we’re doing it, we call it playing.” Tyler Cotner has been composing and performing music since they were 6 years old.
Growing up in a very musical household in sunny southern California, Tyler studied classical piano before branching out into playing a diverse selection of both styles and instruments, including drums, vocals, guitar, bass, ukulele, and many others. Throughout their teaching career, which started in high school, Tyler has always sought to keep music education both relevant to their students’ lives and accessible to those who don’t otherwise have access to it, which is why they have spent the past two years working for a musical non-profit in Hyde Park. As a performing musician, Tyler has played jazz piano in big bands and combos, keyboards in professional wedding and event bands, bass and drums in singer/songwriter recording sessions and live shows, and worked for three years as the musical director of Boston University’s premiere co-ed a cappella group, In Achord.
Education: Bachelor’s in Music Education, Bachelor’s in Music Composition from Boston University, 2018
Ben Icenogle | Ukulele
Ben is a teacher from Dunstable, Massachusetts. He aspires for musical breadth, with background in a variety of instruments (drums, guitar, piano, ukulele, and voice) and genres (pop, rock, jazz, classical, funk, hip-hop). He is currently in the second year of his masters in music education at Boston University. During the summer of 2017 he worked as the New School of Music’s summer intern, before being brought on as their ukulele teacher. He is excited to be working at such a welcoming school with strong community values!
Chris Jenkins | Guitar
Chris attended Berklee College of Music as a performance major, receiving the Berklee Achievement Scholarship. He studied with Kenny Werner, Jon Damien, Hal Crook, and had masterclasses with Pat Martino, Mike Stern, Joe Lovano, and Pat Metheny. Chris has performed with Phil Wilson’s Rainbow Band, Jon Damien, Christopher Holliday, Billy Bowker, Rob Bargad, in many theater productions, and has had an annual gig at John Travolta’s New Year’s Eve party. With over 10 years of teaching experience, Chris is a former faculty member at the Gainesville Guitar Academy and Academy of Music and Art in Gainesville, Florida. Currently, he is a faculty member at the Music & Arts Center in Peabody, MA.
Chris brings a jazz background to his teaching style with emphasis on ear training, theory, improvisation and their application to all styles of music. He is equally comfortable with the beginner to advanced of all ages and styles, including jazz, rock and blues, on both acoustic and electric. Many of his students have won scholarships to the nation’s top music programs.
Kai-Ching Chang, Chamber Music Coordinator
Kai-Ching Chang, pianist is the only winner of Prix de Musique de Chambre from Fontainebleau School in France in 2010. She is also the third prize winner of Czech Prague Music Festival Piano Competition, Youth Division in Asia (1999); first prize winner of 7th Annual National Piano Competition of Taiwan Victor Musical Instrument Company (1994); and finalist of New Tang Dynasty International Piano Competition in New York (2008). As winner of the Longy School of Music Concerto Competition in 2008, she performed the Shostakovich Piano Concerto No.1 with Longy Chamber Orchestra.
To provide accessible arts to the community,she directed When Notes Fly Chamber Music Ensemble and collaborated with local artists, architect designer, theater producer, and ballerinas to perform twenty-four free concerts at Voltage Coffee & Art in Boston in one year. Inspired by this innovative series, award-winning filmmaker Tatyana Bronstein produced a documentary “When Notes Fly” based on Ms. Chang’s work. In the summer of 2012, Ms. Chang participated in the El Sistema program in Colón, Venezuela, where she witnessed the children’s incredible passion for music-making and was subsequently awarded Distinguished Visitor of Táchira State. In October 2012, she performed on an art installation by Os Gêmeos (Brazilian Artists) at the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston.
As a collaborative pianist, Ms. Chang has appeared as a performing associate in International Bowdoin Music Festival. Ms. Chang performed as a guest artist in the Harvard University Dudley Arts Chamber Music Series in the 2011-2012 season. She has collaborated with Laurence Lesser, Paula Robison, Roger Tapping, Sergey Antonov, Carol McGonell, Meighan Stoops, and Nancy Zhou. In 2005, she worked as an assistant accompanist in National Symphony Orchestra (Taipei, Taiwan). Kai-Ching has collaborated closely with composer John Heiss, Paul Brust, and has premiered contemporary works by Samuel Beebe, Hsin-Lei Chen, Amit Gilutz, JwaBum Saho Kim, Caroline Park, Joel Schenk, Adam Jacob Simon, and Michael Taylor. She has performances throughout Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, Honk Kong, South Africa, France, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Vienna, Venezuela, and USA.
Ms. Chang served as a staff pianist at New England Conservatory (2010-2014) and the faculty of New School of Music in Cambridge (2007-present). She holds a B.M. from Soochow University in Taipei, and a M.M. in piano performance and an Artist Diploma in collaborative piano from the Longy School of Music (2008). Her teachers include Peter Serkin, Wayman Chin and Ingrid Tsung and chamber music studies with Roger Tapping. Her performance could be heard on WGBH radio and Youtube.
Harvey is one of the most accomplished jazz pianists in the Boston area. Over the years he has performed across the U.S. and in Europe. In Boston he has performed at Ryles Jazz Club, the Acton Jazz Café, the Regatta Bar, The Colonial Inn in Concord and many more venues. He has been a guest on WGBH Radio on the Eric Jackson Show “Eric in the Evening”.
Harvey has been described as “one of the unsung heroes of the Boston jazz scene since the mid-1960’s.” He was among Lennie Tristano’s (one of the great original improvisers who played with such luminaries as Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker in the 1940’s) last students in the 1970’s, and has done concert appearances accompanying celebrated jazz singer Sheila Jordan and jazz trumpeter Art Farmer (recipient of the 1999 NEA Jazz Master Award).
Harvey regularly performs with the Working Man’s Jazz Band and other area musicians, including with his daughter, Hannah Rose Diamond, an accomplished singer.
B.M., M.M. piano with Honors from the New England Conservatory. Solo and chamber music recitals including performances at the Gardner Museum, Brown University, Kneisel Hall (Blue Hill, Maine), and Dartington Festival (Devon, England). Faculty: UMASS/Boston. Studies with Theodore Lettvin, Katja Andy, and Tatiana Yampolsky.
Hsuan Lee | piano, violin, viola
A native of Taiwan, Hsuan began her music study with piano at the early age of 4. She was then accepted into a sponsored musical program at age 10, where she studied both piano and viola. Hsuan later added violin to her repertoire as a secondary major while she was obtaining her master’s degree.
An avid chamber musician, Hsuan has toured in the U.S., Czech Republic, Japan, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. During these travels, she’s been fortunate to have collaborated with renowned artists such as Andres Cardenas, Bela Horvath, Megumi Kasakawa, Ryan Meehan (Calidore String Quartet,) and Joann Whang (Argus String Quartet.) As a recipient of Earl V. Moore Scholarship, Lloyd H. and Virginia L. Arnold Music Scholarship, and Music Merit Graduate Scholarship, Hsuan holds a post master’s degree from University of Michigan and is now a doctoral candidate at Stony Brook University, studying with the world-renowned Emerson String Quartet.
Today, Hsuan is an experienced instructor of violin, viola, piano, and chamber music. Before moving to Boston, she served as Stony Brook University undergraduate chamber music coach and Stony Brook Symphony Orchestra teaching assistant. She also has assisted students with orchestra auditions, music festivals, scholarships, music theory tests, and NYSSMA. Hsuan is very proud to say that her students once received the highest score in NYSSMA and have been admitted into orchestra programs and music camps with scholarships, such as the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp and the Pioneer High School orchestra.
Hsuan is fluent in Mandarin and English and can also speak a little bit of Japanese. In her spare time, Hsuan enjoys hiking, reading, and watching movies.
Sachiko Murata | Piano & Oboe
Sachiko Murata is an Oboe player and Composer based in Boston. Praised for her “Nicely
tuned and highly accurate in execution.” (Boston Musical Intelligencer), Sachiko Murata has
distinguished herself as a soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral musician. She is currently
Principal Oboe with The Claflin Hill Symphony Orchestra and The Du Bois Symphony Orchestra
in Massachusetts. Recent concerts include appearances at Sanders Theatre, Jordan Hall,
Mechanics Hall in Massachusetts, Hakodate Performing Arts Center in Hokkaido, Japan, and
Fondation Biermans-Lapôtre of Cité Internationale Universitaire de Paris in France.
Winning first prize at the Ralph Gomberg Oboe Merit Award Competition led to numerous
concert appearances, including a début recital with pianist Edmund Arkus at Hakodate
Performing Arts Center, Japan and performance at Pickman Hall as a soloist with Longy
Chamber Orchestra. As a composer, her recent commissioned work, Sorrow Songs for orchestra, was highlyacclaimed at the Du Bois Orchestra Concert in honor of the 150th birthday of W.E.B. Du Bois in 2019. She joined the Kurofune Ensemble concert tour in Japan in 2016 as a resident composer, arranger, and oboist. The Kurofune Ensemble is an exciting new cultural exchange collaboration between musicians, dancers, and educators from Japan and the U.S.
Ms. Murata studied the oboe in middle school under the instruction of her father, former
Principal Oboist of the Sapporo Symphony Orchestra. She took first prize at the Hakodate City
Music Youth Competition. Ms. Murata continued her studies in Tokyo with Yoko Kojima, Oboist
of the NHK Symphony Orchestra, and then on scholarship at Longy School of Music in
Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she studied with Keisuke Wakao, Associate Principal Oboist,
of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
Pianist Joe Reid maintains a busy schedule performing in jazz clubs, with chamber ensembles, dance troupes, and numerous theatre groups. He has worked as a piano accompanist for the Boston Conservatory, the Longy School of Music, the Mark Morris Dance Company, various choral groups, and NSM (where he also teaches jazz piano and jazz ensembles). Joe is a recovered lawyer and lives in Belmont.
Li-Han “Lily” Tseng | Curriculum Coordinator
Li-Han “Lily” Tseng received her Doctor of Music Arts in vocal performance from The University of Alabama and Master of Music degrees in voice performance from Longy School of Music of Bard College and Taipei National University of the Arts.
Dr. Tseng is an active performer in chamber music, choir, recital and opera. She was an assistant accompanist for the Adult Chancel Choir and the principal accompanist for the Children’s Worship Arts Choir at First United Methodist Church at Tuscaloosa, AL. With years of performing experience, Tseng’s wide-ranging interests and expertise include working with professional musicians, adult avocational singers at all levels, and young singers. Tseng’s performance experiences included with the University of Alabama Opera Theatre, University Singers, the Contemporary Ensemble, and Ethos, a newly-formed professional choral ensemble in residence at First Methodist Church of Tuscaloosa. Recently, she has performed the role of Patience in Patience with University of Alabama Opera Theatre (UAOT), The Foreign Woman in The Council (UAOT), The Witch in Hansel and Gretel (UAOT), and Mrs. Discobbolos in Mr & Mrs. Discobbolos with the UA Contemporary Ensemble.
Dr. Tseng has experience teaching private voice and piano students in addition to teaching musicianship lab and accompanying undergraduate and graduate students studying voice. Tseng’s teaching is based on a comprehensive approach to the training of students and incorporates strong technical skill-building for all kind of music genres.
Trudi Van Slyck
Piano Diploma, Longy School of Music. Grant recipient for study in Berlin, Germany. Summer study at Yale University. Soloist with Boston Pops Orchestra, Vermont Symphony Orchestra, Merrimack Valley Orchestra, and Harvard Club Orchestra. Solo and ensemble concerts at Gardner Museum, Sanders Theater, Harvard University, MIT Kresge, National Gallery in Washington, DC, as well as other venues in New England. Radio recitals and American Consulate recitals in Germany. Teaching experience at Longy School of Music, Lesley University, UMass Boston, Indian Hill Music School, Boston Center for Adult Education, and others. Duo piano concerts with husband Nicholas Van Slyck, composer. Recordings produced; three CDs of instrumental and vocal music by N. Van Slyck. www.vanslyckmusic.com
Ting Sung | Piano & Harp
Harpist Ting Sung began her musical adventure with the piano at age of five and the harp at age twelve. She is known for her powerful sound on the harp and performances ranging from classic orchestral, opera, and musical performances to novel contemporary compositions. She holds both a Masters and Bachelors of Music Performance under the tutelage of BSO harpist Jessica Zhou and solo harpist Bridget Kibbey, respectively. Ms. Sung is also experienced in teaching students from age four to adult in early to intermediate piano and harp lessons, early guzheng lessons and advanced music theory lessons. Ting finds joy in sharing her love for music and inspiring creativity in all.
Carlos’ performances have taken him throughout the United States, South America, and many countries in Europe and in venues such as Teatro el Circulo in Argentina, Sala Eduardo Brito in the Dominican Republic, and Wiener Saal in Salzburg. A native of the Dominican Republic, he began his studies at a young age with renowned Cuban pianist and pedagogue Karelia Escalante. Since a young age, Carlos has been an active participant and winner of national and international competitions, such as the Manuel Rueda award in year 2005 in the Festival of Latin-American music celebrated in his country. Other prizes include third prize in The Steinway Competition of Massachusetts, second prize in The Churchill Scholarship Competition, and second prize at the Bradshaw and Buono International Competition. During the 2008 season, Carlos toured Argentina with his duo partner Sebastian Plano, giving concerts as the special guests for “Teatro el Círculo” along with the orchestra of Rosario, Argentina. He was also invited by the President of the Dominican Republic to play for the opening of the literary festival, which is celebrated every year in Santo Domingo. Carlos has a particular interest in developing programs that facilitate musical education to people from all social and economic backgrounds who wouldn’t have the opportunity to receive this type of training. Because of this, Carlos was awarded, since 2008, a grant by the Boston Public Library that allows him to create a piano program for dozens of kids to receive lessons in piano and theory for free. Carlos was also awarded, since 2005, the Zitrin scholarship and completed both his B.A. and M.A. at the Boston Conservatory on full scholarship under the guidance of Dr Jonathan Bass. For more information about Carlos, visit www.facebook.com/carlosvpiano.
Mexican-American pianist Laura Villafranca is an active soloist and chamber musician. After playing her debut with the Mexico City Chamber Orchestra at the age of thirteen, she won a scholarship to continue her musical studies at Interlochen Arts Academy in the United States of America. Ten years latershe won the Silver Medal at Mexico’s National Piano Competition “Angélica Morales-Yamaha” where she was also given the prize for best Bach interpretation. Other awards include first prize at The Boston Conservatory Concerto Competition, Honorable Mention in the Corpus Christi International Competition and the A.R.T.S Competition where she was selected for the Who’s Who Among American High School Students, the Oberlin Conservatory’s Dean’s Scholarship, the Wilfred Churchill Competition and the Benjamin Kasser scholarship which earned her full tuition at The Boston Conservatory.
Ms. Villafranca has performed with the Mexican National Symphony Orchestra at the Palacio de Bellas Artes, the Querétaro Philharmonic Orchestra, the Mexico City Chamber Orchestra, The Boston Conservatory Orchestra in Harvard’s Sanders Theatre and the Sinfonia Perusina in Italy. Recent appearances include chamber recitals at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City, live broadcasted performances in Mexican classical music stations Radio IMER and Radio UNAM.
Laura Villafranca studied with Michael Lewin, Angela Cheng, Stephen Perry, Victoria Mushkatkol and Benjamin Valdes Aguilar.
For further information visit: www.lauravillafranca.com
Pamela Ambrose | Cello
Diploma, Longy; M.M., Boston University. Student of George Neikrug and Madeleine Foley. Faculty: Winchester Community Music School, Arlington After School Program. Member of the Charles River Trio. Major studies with Raymond Davis, Madeline Foley and George Nekrug, Chamber music studies with Louis Krasner. Chamber music performances: Museum of Fine Arts, Decordova Museum, Berklee School of Music, Ryles Jazz Club. Can be heard on the recent recording, Poetic Reflections.
Anna Griffis | Violin & Viola
Equally at home on modern and period instruments, violist and violinist Anna Griffis has given recitals in Mexico,Turkey, Austria, Taiwan, and throughout North America. She is a member of the New Bedford Symphony (principal), and Albany Symphony, and performs with the Rhode Island Philharmonic, Emmanuel Music, Odyssey Opera, BMOP, Blue Heron, and Les Bostonades. She co-founded Trio Speranza, prize winners at the 2014 Early Music America baroque competition, and performs with and is executive director of the Ludovico Ensemble, a group focused on music of the European avant-garde. Anna studied at Lawrence University, The Hartt School of Music, Tanglewood Music Center, and Boston University. She is on faculty at the Dana Hall School of Music and the New School of Music, and maintains a private studio. She teaches, coaches chamber music, and oversees P.R. for the Tufts University Music Department. Anna lives in the great neighborhood of Lower Allston with her bassoonist partner and their cat, Pig.
Hsuan Lee | piano, violin, viola
Please see Hsuan’s bio under “Piano faculty”
Sally Martin | Suzuki Violin, Violin, & Viola
BM Performance, Indiana University. Performed for 4 years with the Osnabrueck Symphony Orchestra in Germany. Performed chamber music and toured with the Nordwestdeutsches Kammerensemble. Has performed with the Spoleto Festival Orchestra (Italy), the Graz Festival Orchestra (Austria), the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra, among others. Suzuki training from Ronda Cole, Edmund Springer, Edward Kreitman, and Mary Cay Neil. Currently on the faculty at All Newton Music School. Freelances and performs with various area orchestras.
Peter Paetkau | Violin, Group Violin Class
Peter Paetkau, violinist, is a founding member of the chamber music collective, “Analog By Choice” and a recent graduate of the Longy School of Music where he studied with Anna Williams. He has performed in a variety of venues across the Americas and Europe also attending festivals including the Cremona International Music Festival and the Longy Divergent Studio. He has performed with various ensembles where he held principal positions and is an avid chamber musician focusing on well-known and under-represented composers. Paetkau has worked in a variety of El Sistema-inspired educational settings where his passion for music as an emotional and communicative art drives both his teaching and performing practice.
Ting Sung | Harp & Piano
Please see Ting’s bio under piano faculty.
Anne Hooper Webb | Violin & Fiddle
B.S., Mannes. Student of William Kroll, Raphael Bronstein, and Sandor Vegh. Played for nine years with the Camerata Academica of Salzburg and the Sinfonieorchester Graunke of Munich. Freelances in the Boston area. Member of Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra and Boston Philharmonic. Scottish Fiddle National Champion, 1993, 1998. Faculty: The Rivers Music School, Lexington Schools.
Alexandra Deitrich | Co-Director, Kids’ Cabaret
Alex Deitrich is a music educator, music director, and pianist in Boston, MA. Alex teaches K-5 Music in Milton Public Schools, where she enjoys providing the youngest learners with a foundational music education. In her role as a music educator, Alex has also served as an elementary choral director and an instructional leadership team member. Alex is active as a theatrical music director/pianist, recently at Brookline Public Schools, Milton Public Schools, Riverside Theatre Works, the University of Rochester, and the French Woods Festival of Performing Arts. Alex holds a degree in Music Teaching & Learning from the Eastman School of Music. She is looking forward to joining the team at the New School of Music and having lots of musical theatre fun at Kids Cabaret!
David Flowers | Co-Director, Kids’ Cabaret
David Allen Flowers is a music director, and conductor based in Boston, MA. In addition to working on productions with the Arlington Children’s Theater and the Solomon-Schechter Day School of Greater Boston, he has also served with the education departments at the Ogunquit Playhouse and Chicago Opera Theater. As a composer, he has worked with the Cantata Singers and Chicago Opera Theater to write original songs with kids in Boston and Chicago Public Schools, respectively. He has also co-written and composed several musicals as assistant director of ensembles at the ‘etc.’ Music School.
As a conductor he has served as assistant and interim director for the Ridgeville Band of Evanston, assistant conductor for the Savoyaires, director of the Penn State Campus Orchestra, and assistant conductor of the Penn State Philharmonic. When he is not working in musical theater, he is working to produce a performance of Sarah Kirkland Snider’s “Mass for the Endangered”, in partnership with Cappella Clausura, which will go up this fall. He teaches piano at the North End Music and Performing Arts Center, and forgets not to hum showtunes while riding the T. He’s excited to join the team at the New School of Music this summer!
Cindy Giron | Songs and Stories from Around the World
Cindy Giron is a dedicated music educator born and raised in the suburbs of Boston, with Guatemalan and Spanish heritage. She teaches piano, music theory, composition, and electronic music production private lessons and group classes, in addition to general music classes. With more than 10 years of teaching experience, she believes everyone learns music via personalized guidance in listening and feeling by the virtue of practice and reflection.
Cindy’s music education started at the early age of five, with thorough classical music instruction throughout her formative years at the New England Conservatory Preparatory School of Music; studying piano, composition, theory, chamber duo/ensemble, orchestral performance, and participating in Boston’s prestigious piano seminar led by A. Ramón Rivera. She continued higher music education at the Manhattan School of Music where she studied a Bachelor of Music, majoring in Music Composition and minoring in Piano Performance. She has earned two masters degrees, one in Music Theory and Composition from New York University, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development; and another from The Royal Conservatory of the Hague, in Practice-Based Research, with a focus on composing with silence, while also minoring with contemporary piano performance. What’s more, while living abroad in the Netherlands, she studied the ‘One-Year Course Programme’ at the Institute of Sonology, combining composition and piano performance with the addition of electronic music studies; learning music programming, acoustics, analog synthesis, installation design, and the art of improvisation.
As a teacher, Cindy believes that one size does not fit all. Her intention is to tailor a pupil’s progression gradually in a natural way. She has pedagogical training in:
*Eurhythmics – Valuing improvisation, the use of rhythmical and physical movements to learn music, and ear-training games, created by Émile Jacques-Dalcroze.
*Musical Aurora – a method similar to eurhythmics, emphasizing solfege and listening games, created by Claudette Munné.
*Keys for Kids – an intensive group keyboard method in which students are encouraged to learn both listening and reading patterns, created by Inga Y. Magid.
*Waldorf education (also known as Steiner education) – a pedagogical approach in which educating a pupil is approached holistically, so as to integrate the intellect, the artistic, practical and psychological; created by Rudolf Steiner.
When she is not teaching, you may see Cindy as a multifaceted musician and human —she is a pianist, composer, electronic sound artist, installation designer, poet, sound healer, cyclist, and yoga instructor.
Rachael Chagat | Choir Ensembles
Rachael Chagat is a Teaching Artist with the Handel and Haydn Society and teaches K0-5th grade general music at the Winship School in Brighton. She also runs and directs the Choral Program at the New School of Music in Cambridge, MA. In the Fall of 2021, Rachael was named a Fellow in the 2021-2023 cohort of the Music Educator and Teaching Artist (META) Fellowship – a partnership of The Klarman Family Foundation and Mass Cultural Council which seeks to strengthen youth music pathways in Massachusetts by recognizing the critical role educators play in supporting youth. Previously, she has been a Choral Artist with the Metropolitan Opera Guild and served on faculty for the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Days in the Arts at Tanglewood program.
In addition to her work as a music educator, Rachael is an active performer in the Boston area. Dedicated to both art song and vocal chamber music, she has performed in venues across the U.S. and in Europe. Rachael is a founding member of Ensemble Lyrae, a Boston-based chamber ensemble composed of 4 voices and pianist.
Rachael graduated with Distinction from the Longy School of Music in Cambridge with both a Masters and Graduate Performance Diploma in Vocal Performance. While at Longy she was a 2005 Honors Competition winner and a finalist in the 2007 Concerto Competition. Ms. Chagat earned her Bachelor’s degree at Capital University in Music Education and a certificate from the Zoltán Kodály Pedagogical Institute of Music in Kecskemét, Hungary.
Jennifer Burks, soprano, is currently a graduate student at the New England Conservatory of Music studying Vocal Pedagogy under Dr Ian Howell and is in the voice studio of Lisa Saffer. She received her Bachelor’s in Vocal Performance from the University of Arkansas in 2015. Jennifer has been teaching private voice since 2017. Her commitment to every student is to provide a joyful environment that promotes confidence, individuality, and self-expression. Each student has goals that are individual to them and she believes her purpose as a teacher is to provide them with the tools they need to achieve those goals. Jennifer’s students have been accepted to multiple renowned music programs including Colorado All State Choir, Interlochen Summer Institute, various college music programs, and many other wonderful opportunities. She enjoys teaching students of all ages and experience levels!
As a performer, Jennifer has sung with the Boulder Bach Festival (Fellowship Artist), Boulder Opera Company (Princess: Puss in Boots), Boulder Symphony Chorus (La Traviata, La Boheme, Le Nozze di Figaro), Boston’s premier recording choir Vox Futura, and has placed in several competitions (World Bach Competition 2020: 2nd Place Community category, RICCO Messiah Competition: Soprano Winner, 2022). When she isn’t singing, you can find Jennifer running around the Boston Esplanade or curled up with a good book.
Natalia St Jean
Soprano Natalia St Jean delights in the fact that the more a musician learns, the more there is to
discover. To that end, she purses a wide variety of opportunities to perform opera, chamber works,
oratorio, and musical theater. Fluent in Spanish and Polish, Natalia is a keen linguaphile and explorer of new countries, new repertoire, and new stories. Engagements include appearances with Boston Conservatory Opera, the New England Opera Intensive, Opera NUOVA, and the Victorian Lyric Opera Company. She unites her twin passions for music and linguistics by designing supertitles for live and virtual productions by companies like Boston Lyric Opera. Most recently, she designed closed captions for Ma-Yi Theater Company’s new production of Once Upon a Korean Time at La MaMa Experimental Theater Company in Manhattan.
Natalia holds an M.M. in Vocal Pedagogy from Boston Conservatory and studies voice with Kathryn
Wright. Her teaching experience includes work as a public elementary music teacher (Frederick, MD), musicianship instructor and assistant conductor with the Frederick Children’s Chorus, teaching fellow with Boston City Singers, and private instructor at New School of Music (Cambridge, MA). Now in her third year at NSM, Natalia is dedicated to deepening her students’ understanding of their own voices so each singer can let go of inhibitions, allow themselves to create authentic, meaningful art, and care for their vocal health as their voices grow and change. By creating a respectful, collaborative environment in the teaching studio, she provides students a safe space to play with sounds, take risks, be vulnerable, find joy, and develop the courage, resilience, and flexibility that singers need, whatever their level of experience or reasons for singing.
BM, Berklee College of Music. Studied with Susan Lincoln, April Arabian, Maggie Scott, Bob Stoloff. Performs rock, jazz, country, folk, soul, blues and original music. Performed and/or recorded with Vox One, Tim Gearan, Davis Goodrich, Bruce Millard, Peter Mulvey, Chris Smither, Thank God for Science, Wayworn Travellers, and Groovasaurus which won two Boston Music Awards and Boston Magazine’s Best Rock Band.
Zack Bacak | Saxophone, Flute, Clarinet
Zack Bacak is a freelance performer, educator, and composer based in Boston, Massachusetts. For 5 years, Zack spent his formative years at Florida State University, receiving degrees in music education and music performance. While in Tallahassee, he was able to meet and perform with artists and groups such as Carmen Bradford (The Count Basie Orchestra), Ana Gasteyer (Saturday Night Live), and the Tallahassee Jazz Symphony Orchestra. It was through these experience that led him into the role of a bandleader, performing original music and arrangements throughout the state.
Following his graduation, Zack was selected as a member of the 2017 Disney All-American College Band in Anaheim, California. Since then, he spent the next few years touring and performing with a variety of talent that includes John Clayton, Networks Productions, and the Springfield Pops Orchestra. When not performing, Zack is an avid educator. In addition to leading a private studio, he is the founder and director of the Summer Jazz Workshop at the Hopkinton Arts Center. He currently leads groups like the Zack Bacak Big Band, a compositional project featuring a variety of artists.
Kristine Kirby | Flute
Kristine’s classical training began in Rochester, New York; where she pursued musical studies with Eastman School of Music faculty and members of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. After moving to Boston, she expanded her interests into jazz and improvisational music. More recently, she has studied both classical and jazz styles with noted instructors through New England Conservatory’s Continuing Education program.
Kristine has played flute and piccolo with the Thayer Symphony Orchestra in central Massachusetts, has also performed as a member of the Tufts University Flute Ensemble. Currently, she regularly serves in the pit orchestra for community musical theatre productions in the Metrowest area and frequently performs for a variety of cultural, educational and social events in her capacity as an active freelance musician.
Kristine has taught flute to all levels of students since 1995, and has participated in instrumental music programs at the Atrium School in Watertown, Blanchard School in Boxboro, Brimmer & May School in Brookline and Hudson’s Arts Alliance. She also maintains a thriving teaching studio at her home in Concord.
Elise Tally | Clarinet, Flute, Saxophone, & Recorder
Elise Tally (formerly Kopesky) is a passionate music teacher of clarinet, flute, saxophone, and recorder. Mrs. Tally is an active chamber and orchestral musician based in Greater Boston. She has performed at venues such as Edward M. Pickman Hall, Lily Pad, Regattabar, Boston’s Old South Church, and Symphony Hall. She is a founding member of Iris Winds, and performs with other area ensembles specializing in new music. Mrs. Tally earned her Undergraduate Diploma and Master of Music degrees from the Longy School of Music, where she was a winner in the 2007 Honors Competition.