What an amazing group of faculty we have for 2017! Read on! (Instruments, followed by faculty names listed in Alphabetical Order)
Matthew Gold – Bass
Matt Gold fell in love with the double bass when he began playing the instrument at the age of nine. He went on to study with John Chiego at the University of Memphis on a full scholarship, and later with the distinguished bass pedagogue Lawrence Hurst at Indiana University where he earned a Masters Degree in Music Performance. While at IU, Matt also had the privilege of working with Bruce Bransby, former Principal Bass of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and Stanley Richie, the world-renowned Baroque violinist. Matt has been a tenured member of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, and has played with the Louisiana Philharmonic and Virginia Symphony Orchestras. Nowadays, he can frequently be seen on stage at Richmond’s Carpenter Theatre with the Richmond Symphony.
Matt has always had a strong interest in a variety of eclectic styles. In high school, he began rock and jazz lessons on guitar and studied jazz bass at the University of Memphis with Tim Goodwin, formerly of the Kennedy Center “Jazz Ambassadors” program. Matt has also taken composition lessons from Prix deRome winner Kamran Ince. He currently plays double bass in Goldrush, a Richmond-based rock band.
A dedicated teacher, Matt is a classical bass instructor at the College of William & Mary and the Omaha Conservatory of Music Summer Institute, alongside a very successful studio of private bass students. When he is not making music, Matt loves to go on runs through Richmond’s beautiful Museum District with his wife, Treesa Gold, violinist, and their two dogs, Ringo and Rubeus.
Beth Cantrell – Cello
ELIZABETH CANTRELL, “Dr. Beth”, has taught children and adults at Suzuki Institutes and workshops throughout the United States for over 30 years. She is currently adjunct faculty at Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, Locally, she maintains a private studio at Crozet Arts. In addition to teaching, Dr. Cantrell has performed with Opera on the James, the Charlottesville Chamber Orchestra, the Waynesboro Symphony, the Richmond Symphony, Roanoke Symphony, and the Wintergreen Festival Orchestra. Dr. Cantrell earned degrees in cello performance and music history from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Florida State University, and the University of Georgia. Prior to moving to Virginia with her family in 2001, she was principal cellist for the Atlanta Ballet Orchestra, and was on the faculty of Kennesaw State University. She was active in the Atlanta area for 18 years as a teacher, chamber and orchestral performer, adjudicator, and recording studio musician.
A devoted performer and educator, Zachary Sweet began his cello studies in Berlin, Germany with Nella Hunkins at the age of 8. In high school Zachary attended the Interlochen Arts Camp, Indiana String Academy, FAME Arts Festival and was a member of the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra and String Octet.
Zachary completed his Master’s in Performance and Literature at the Eastman School of Music in 2006 where he served as a Departmental Assistant for Alan Harris. During his studies there, he became a member of the Eastman Chamber Society, was Principal of Eastman Philharmonia, Eastman Chamber Orchestra, and Eastman Opera Orchestra, and studied chamber music with the Ying Quartet, Elinore Freer, Dr. Jean Barr, Kenneth Grant, and Alan Harris.
As a performer, Zachary has performed extensively throughout the Tri-State area. Venues have included Shewan Recital Hall at Roberts Wesleyan College, Gibson Hall at Elmira College, Bristol Hall at Westminster Choir College, the Hochstein Performance Hall, Kilbourn Hall at Eastman School of Music, and the “Nassau at Six” recital series in Princeton, NJ. He has had the honor of performing with artists such as Sharon Sweet, J.J. Penna, Phyllis Lehrer, Jose Melendez, Yin-Min Chang, Tabatha Easley, Patrice Pastore, Nick McBride and the late Erik Freedman. Future performances include three performances at Cornell’s “Locally Grown Dance Festival” in March ‘12, and a solo recital in Ithaca, NY in April ‘12 with pianist Kathy Hansen.
Currently, Zachary plays with the Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes, the Binghamton Philharmonic, the Tri-Cities Opera, and the New Violin Family Orchestra. He has also had the pleasure of mentoring local Youth Orchestras in Tompkins County. From 2001-2003, Zachary held the Talented Students in the Arts Initiative Fellowship at the Aspen Music Festival, where he acted as mentor to the Concert and Symphonic orchestras while playing with the Festival Orchestra under the batons of David Zinman and James Conlon.
As an educator, Zachary has spent the past five years exploring music development in young children. In 2009, he completed a long-term training program in Talent Education at the School for Strings in Manhattan under the tutelage of Master Teacher Pamela Devenport. Zachary has also completed training with Sally Gross, Carey Beth Hockett, and Rick Mooney. He has been the recipient of the Margery Aber Memorial Scholarship and most recently The 2011 String Centre Scholarship, both awarded by the Suzuki Association of the Americas, and is currently on the faculty of Ithaca Talent Education. Since 2009, he has also been teaching non major students at Cornell University. In addition, Zachary is in demand as a Music Together Instructor, leading classes for Mixed Ages, Babies, Big Kids and Pre-Schools. He currently teaches for Music Together of Ithaca. In April, 2010, Zachary was awarded Music Together Certification Level I status, having demonstrated outstanding achievement in teaching, musicianship, program philosophy, and parent education. The award was granted by the Center for Music and Young Children in Princeton, NJ, Kenneth K. Guilmartin, Found/Director.
John began his cello studies at the age of 7, and grew up in Dallas, TX. He attended Bryan Adams High School where he was a member of the National Honors Orchestra. He received both Bachelors and Masters of Music degrees from Louisiana State University in Cello Performance. He also pursued a Doctoral degree in cello performance at North Texas University where he studied with Adolfo Odnoposoff. He has taught and freelanced as a cellist for many years in Texas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas.
He is a member of the Faculty at the Suzuki Music School in Fayetteville, AR, where he began teaching in 1993 and currently teaches. He also works as a cello coach for String Coalition. He has spent time in Suzuki Teacher Training with Rick Mooney, Jean Dexter, and Nancy Hare. His students love his devotion to teaching and encouraging young people to love music and love the cello!
William Kossler is a gifted guitarist in demand internationally as both a teacher and performer. He holds Undergraduate and Masters Degrees in Classical Guitar Performance from the University of South Carolina where he studied with Christopher Berg. William has placed as a finalist in regional and national competitions and received positive reviews for his compelling performances. He is the author of several publications on guitar pedagogy and his articles have appeared in Soundboard (the Journal of the Guitar Foundation of America), The Suzuki Journal (the Journal of the Suzuki Association of the Americas) and several other publications. He has conducted Long Term Artist Residencies with both the South Carolina and Tennessee Arts Commissions. As a recipient of a Rotary International Scholarship he spent a year in Japan studying with pedagogue Dr. Shinichi Suzuki. A co-author of the Suzuki Guitar Method, Mr. Kossler has conducted pedagogy workshops for guitarists throughout the United States, South America, Canada, Europe and Australia. He currently directs a Suzuki program in Winston-Salem with his wife Lauren, a violinist, teaches guitar at Piedmont International University and has served on the North Carolina Arts Council’s Touring Artists Directory as a performer on the guitar, lute, and vihuela.
Charles Krigbaum – Violin
Charles Krigbaum is a Suzuki Talent Education specialist and is the founder and Director of the North Texas School of Talent Education, a Suzuki violin and viola program located in Plano, Texas. Founded in 2001, NTSTE offers expert instruction in violin and viola, along with a full array of musical experiences designed to provide an extraordinary musical education for children ages 3 – 18, preparing students for a lifetime of music making at the highest level, regardless of professional aspirations.
He is a magna cum laude graduate of the Schwob School of Music where he studied viola with Manuel Diaz, a former student of the legendary William Primrose, and the father of international viola superstar and President of the Curtis Institute of Music, Roberto Diaz. He received his Master of Music degree, summa cum laude, at the University of Texas at Arlington where he studied viola as a student of Catherine Forbes and studied early childhood music education and music learning theory with Dr. Diane Lange. Charles has also studied violin pedagogy at Indiana University with Mimi Zweig and has completed hundreds of hours of Suzuki teacher training at the American Suzuki Institute in Stevens Point, Wisconsin.
During his many summers at ASI, and at Institutes and workshops worldwide, Charles has studied pedagogy and Suzuki philosophy with some of the most illustrious Suzuki Teacher Trainers in the world, including: Barbara Barber, Helen Brunner, Linda Case, Ronda Cole, Carol Dallinger, Teri Einfeldt, Alice Joy Lewis, Edmund Sprunger, and Tom Wermuth. He has been profoundly influenced and inspired by his principal mentors Nancy Lokken, Edward Kreitman, and Kerstin Wartberg.
His students have consistently won high recognition in many solo competitions and contests, and are often selected to participate in prestigious performing groups including various All-Region Orchestras, all levels of the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra, and the Texas Music Educations Association’s All-State Orchestra.
Charles has won many awards for his scholarship, musicianship, and abilities as both a performer and as a teacher. National achievements include winning the American Suzuki Institute’s Shinichi Suzuki Scholar Award in 2004 and 2005, national finalist in the Music Teachers Nation Association Studio Teachers scholarship competition, Most Outstanding Graduate Student (University of Texas at Arlington), and membership in Pi Kappa Lambda, the national music honors society. In 2010, Charles became one of the first teachers in the country to earn the Certificate of Achievement from the Suzuki Association of the Americas, an award given to teachers that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to lifelong learning and excellence in their teaching.
In 2014, Charles became a registered Teacher Trainer with the Suzuki Association of the Americas. He has taught at workshops and Institutes throughout the United States, Canada, England, and Germany; he is also past President of the North Texas Suzuki Association, a Chapter Affiliate of the SAA.
As a professional musician, he has played viola and violin in a wide array of orchestras, chamber groups, and many other diverse performing ensembles across the country. His multi-faceted career includes teaching, performing, administration, conducting research in the field of string pedagogy, writing, and presenting lectures and workshops on various topics.
Eric Ryan-Johnson has taught Irish fiddle at workshops including the Ottawa Suzuki Institute Mid-Southwest in Kansas, the Greenville Texas Suzuki Workshop, the Northwest Arkansas Suzuki Winter Workshop and the O’Flaherty Irish Music Retreats and Youth Camps in the Dallas-area. Many of his Irish fiddle students have studied in master classes with Irish fiddlers such as Kevin Burke, Daire Bracken and Brendan Mulvihill.
In 1969, at age four Eric began studying Suzuki violin from Ernie Stanke in Madison, WI. He earned his Bachelor of Music-Composition from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He has studied Suzuki pedagogy with Craig Timmerman, Kay Slone, Marilyn O’Boyle and Alice Joy Lewis, and has registered teacher-training in the Suzuki method. He is an active member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas (SAA). Prior to moving to Tulsa, Eric was Assistant Director of Early Childhood Arts at MacPhail Center in Minneapolis and was a member of the Suzuki faculty.
Eric currently lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma with his wife Kara and son Seamus, and performs as a member of the Tulsa band, Cairde na Gael. He teaches both Suzuki violin and traditional Irish fiddle out of his home studio. He also conducts both the Symphony Orchestra and Jazz Ensemble at Booker T. Washington High School, the number one public high school in Oklahoma
Esther Fellows – Violin
Esther Fellows is a performer as well as teacher of violin, viola, and piano. In July, 2015, Esther became a Suzuki Teacher Trainer, the only one in Oklahoma. In addition to her position of Violin/Viola Instructor at Oral Roberts University and maintaining her own private studio, she is a section First Violinist with the Signature Symphony (Tulsa, OK) and Assistant Concertmaster of the Bartlesville Symphony Orchestra (OK), Principal Viola with the Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra (AR), as well as section violist in the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra (OK). As of August, 2015, she is First Violin in the Signature String Quartet. Esther received her BMEd from the University of Colorado, where her teachers included Abraham Chavez (violin), Oswald Lehnert (violin), and Guy Duckworth (piano), and Storm Bull (piano).
Highlights from her extensive musical credentials include becoming the first SAA Teacher Trainer in Oklahoma, being nationally certified by Music Teachers National Association on violin, viola, and piano (certification through recital, lesson videotapes, examination, and Pedagogy Notebook), registered in Suzuki training with the Suzuki Association of the Americas (SAA), advanced violin training at the Starling-Delay Symposium, at The Juilliard School. Esther has held the positions of Parliamentarian, President of Tulsa Accredited Music Teachers Association, as well as Chair of Scholarship Auditions, Recording Secretary and Chair of the Sonatina Competition for TAMTA. She is a member of Hyechka Club of Tulsa, Tulsa Accredited Music Teachers Association, Oklahoma Music Teachers Association, Music Teachers National Association, Suzuki Association of the Americas, American String Teachers Association, American Viola Society and the American Federation of Musicians. She is published in American Music Teacher and the American String Teachers Association. Esther is also listed in Marquis’ Who’s Who of American Women, Who’s Who of American Education, Who’s Who in America, and Who’s Who in the World.
Holly Smardo – Violin
Holly Smardo founding member of the Arkansas Philharmonic Youth Orchestras and the Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra, has had many years of successful Suzuki teaching, not only in Arkansas, but also in Kansas City, Washington D.C., and Illinois. Many of her violin students have gone on to successful careers as performers and music students around the country.
She has served as Concertmaster of North Arkansas Symphony Orchestra and currently performs with Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra (APO). Holly is committed to bringing musical opportunities to Northwest Arkansas by working with the APO to develop programs such as Carnegie Hall’s Link Up. Holly is a graduate of the University of Missouri-Kansas City with a Bachelor’s degree in music education and an emphasis in performance. She has also completed long term teacher training with Carol Smith and Kent Perry receiving a Master’s degree in Suzuki pedagogy and performance from Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville.
Rachel Ringeisen serves as orchestra director at Cedar Ridge High School in Round Rock ISD and conducts the Camerata Orchestra as part of the Austin Youth Orchestra program. A violinist since age 5, she maintains a private violin/viola studio and is a regular clinician at Suzuki music festivals throughout central Texas. In addition to teaching, Rachel performs regularly in the Austin area and with the Waco Symphony Orchestra.
Rachel completed her Music and Human Learning degree (M.M) as a Sarah and Ernest Butler Excellence scholar, where she was the Preschool Coordinator for the University of Texas String Project and taught in a pilot string program at UT Elementary School. Additionally, Rachel developed an interdisciplinary curriculum in music and phonemic awareness as her master’s thesis. She was chosen as the UT representative to attend the 2011 Global Music Camp in Ghana.
Rachel received a B.M. in violin performance and pedagogy from the Wheaton College Conservatory (IL), where she was Concertmaster of the Wheaton College Symphony Orchestra, Senior Class Representative, a Presidential Honors Award recipient and a Memorial Merit Scholar. Rachel has studied the violin with Professors Sandy Yamamoto, Anne Akiko Meyers, Paul Zafer, Dr. Lee Joiner, and Elizabeth Suh-Lane. She is a member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas and Texas Music Educators Association.
Rhea Edelman is currently finishing her DMA at the University of North Texas under the instruction of Dr. Felix Olschofka. In addition to teaching at the Suzuki school, Rhea is a Teaching Fellow at UNT where she teaches string pedagogy.
Raised in Portland, Oregon, Rhea graduated magna cum laude from Whitman College with BAs in both music and biochemistry. In 2008, she completed her M.M. in Violin Performance and Suzuki Pedagogy at the Cleveland Institute of Music studying with David Updegraff and Kimberly Meier-Sims.
While at CIM, Rhea taught Suzuki violin extensively through both the Sato Center and the Solon Center for the Arts, where she maintained a large private studio. Rhea has also been a guest clinician at workshops across the country, including Texas, Ohio, Arkansas and Maine. She spent four summers on the violin faculty of the Encore/Coda summer music camp in Sweden, Maine where she was head of the string department and chamber music coordinator.
Along with teaching, Rhea enjoys playing as a member of several regional orchestras including Dallas Bach and Abilene Philharmonic.
In addition to modern violin, Rhea studies Baroque violin with Cynthia Roberts and has a related field of Early Music. She performs with Dallas Bach and has toured internationally with the Baroque group Musica Angelica. She has studied with members of the Tafelmusik orchestra at TBSI and at the Oberlin Baroque Performance Institute.
While attendingWhitman College, Rhea was a NCAA Division III competitive swimmer and is also an accomplished equestrian. In addition to music, Rhea enjoys spending time with her fiancé and their two rescue dogs.