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Click on underlined names for more information about our 2014-2015 performers. Vitas are added as they are received. All concerts are FREE.

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Programs 2014-2015 

Abilene Chamber Players Anastasia Markina, piano
Jane Aten, violin Alessandro Mazzamuto, piano
Deborah Austin-Totter, piano Yuxin Mei, pipa
Azul Piano Duo Marcelo Melo, guitar
Elizabeth Boyson, violin Menagerie Multicultural Ensemble
Laura Logan Brandenburg, harp Mark Miller, violin
Brent Buemi, clarinet Ute Miller, viola
Cole Burger, piano Mount Vernon Music
Young-Hyun Cho, piano Thiago Nascimento, piano
Ron Clinton, piano Peter Neubert, viola
Charles Coltman, clarinet Jeffery Ou, Piano
Karah Cruse, violin Gretchen Nichols, cello 
Dante Davis Open Classical
Nathaniel Earhart, guitar Daniel Pardo, flute 
Adam Gordon, Baroque trumpet Hannah Payne, piano
Amy Gustafson, piano Susan Poelchau, piano
Emily Hartnett, viola Debbie Ragsdale, flute
Randall Hooper, conductor Mary Alice Rich, violin
Kristin Isaacson, cello Nicholas Rothouse, world percussion
Peter Isaacson, violin Sonja Ryberg, viola
Eunice Keem, violin Jan Sloman Violin Students
Clara Kim, violin Hye-Young Song, piano
Camille King, soprano Leslie Spotz, piano
Joseph Kingma, piano Laurie Shulman, piano
Kithara Duo, guitar Sopon “Jokobo” Suwannakit, jazz piano
Mark Landson, viola/violin Texas A&M University-Commerce Chamber Singers - Randall Hooper, conductor
Megan Lin, violin Jonathan Tsay, piano
Sheng-hsin Lin, clarinet Christopher Wright, double bass

Abilene Chamber Players

The Abilene Chamber Players was founded in 1998 by the instrumental performance faculty in the School of Music and Fine Arts at Hardin-Simmons University in Texas. The current members include faculty from both Hardin-Simmons University and Tarleton State University.

Charles Coltman, clarinet; Peter Isaacson, violin; Peter Neubert, viola (not pictured); 
Kristin Isaacson, cello; Leslie Spotz, piano

The ensemble performs a wide variety of music from the Baroque to the most contemporary music of the 21st century. 

In the last several years, the Abilene Chamber Players have presented concerts throughout Texas for the San Angelo Museum of Art Sunday Concert Series, The Langdon Center, Music at Marvin Concert Series and for the Dallas AGO chapter. More recently the ensemble has performed abroad in several venues in London, England including: The Space, St George’s Bloomsbury and Southwark Cathedral. In 2013, the Abilene Chamber Players performed an American Music program at the Conservatorio di Milano and the Ambrosianeum Fondazione Culturale at Sala Falck in Milan, Italy.

The Abilene Chamber Players hold degrees from the University of North Texas, Curtis Institute, The Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, Indiana University and the Eastman School of Music. Members of the Abilene Chamber Players have recorded for Centaur Records and Lenore Records.

The group will be presenting an interesting program of chamber music that dates from the 18th century with Crusell’s Clarinet Quartet, to more contemporary works by Pulitzer Prize- winning composer, Karel Husa, and works by Peter Schickele and Astor Piazzolla.

Artistic Director, Charles Coltman, has been proactive in programming contemporary music of the 20th and 21st centuries by presenting the music of Bernard Scherr, Dana Wilson, Michael Daugherty, and others. The Abilene Chamber Players have also presented a multi-media performance of Hindemith’s Der Damon with the simultaneous projection of visual art from the expressionist period and are planning an expansion of the ensemble to perform Nina Rota’s Nonetto in the spring of 2015 on the campus of Hardin-Simmons University.


Jane Aten, violin


Jane Linn Aten is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin String Project, and has taught in a variety of assignments from kindergarten through college levels. Currently, she maintains a violin/viola studio, works with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra as a Young Strings teacher and curriculum writer, and plays in the Texas Winds Hospital Trio.




Deborah Austin-Totter, piano

Deborah Austin-Totter is a freelance pianist for the Dallas Symphony Orchestra (DSO) and is an accompanist, and coach for the DSO’s nationally recognized “Young Strings” program. She is staff accompanist for the DSO sponsored “Lynn Harrell” competition. She performed for the DSO Nasher chamber music series and has served as accompanist for several national and Texas state competitions. Deborah also teaches adult piano students at Dallas/Music, Inc.

Deborah has worked with the students of Jascha Heifetz, Ivan Galamian, Jan Mark Sloman, Itzhak Perlman, Midori, and Nathanial Rosen. She has accompanied in master classes for Midori, Pinchas Zukerman, Shlomo Mintz, Arnold Steinhardt, Jaime Laredo, Elmar Oliveira, Ani Kavafian, Rachel Barton, Stephanie Chase, Fredell Lack, Alisa Weilerstein, and others.

Deborah performs regularly with Dallas/Fort Worth professionals and students of all instruments, specializing in violin repertoire. She has performed in many U.S. cities, as well as Canada. Deborah was the soloist in the North American premier of Robert X. Rodriguez’s Piano Concerto #2, and has recorded on the CoDa and DBH labels.

Deborah completed her Bachelor of Music degree, magna cum laude, as well as her Master of Music degree in piano performance at SMU. She began her study of the piano at age 3, and by nine, she added cello. The choice of second instrument was fortuitous, allowing her to develop a heightened sensitivity and awareness in the performance of the stringed instrument repertoire, with which she is now extensively involved.

At SMU, Deborah continued her study of cello. She also did extensive work in piano pedagogy, chamber music, accompanying, and orchestral playing. She received the Paul Vellucci Award for outstanding senior pianist and the Sigma Alpha Iota Award for outstanding ensemble player.


Azul Piano Duo

Duo Azul, made up of Korean pianist Hyeyoung Song and American pianist Amy E. Gustafson, was founded in 2009, out of a deep friendship and a mutual love for the four-hands and two piano repertoire. The two met in Austin, Texas while they were both completing their doctoral degrees at the University of Texas. The Duo’s first performances were in 2010 in Texas, and they are both thrilled to be back together for several performances in the 2014 – 2015 season with a program that centers around American and Spanish music and influences, but also includes some French and Russian composers. See


Elizabeth Boyson, violin

Elizabeth Boyson’s musical interest began while “tagging along” with her older brother and sister to their weekly violin lessons. Attending the music lessons and listening to her siblings practice for hours piqued her fascination with music, and naturally, Elizabeth wanted to do what her older brother and sister were doing. Initially, Elizabeth would pick up one of the several violins in our home and demonstrate an uncanny ability to play them. Eventually at the age of six, Elizabeth was able to follow in her siblings’ footsteps, and she eagerly began her very own formal violin instructions. Elizabeth received her first lessons through the Suzuki Music Institute of Dallas with Mrs. Andrea Venincasa. Then, from the fall of 2013 until the spring of 2014, Elizabeth studied with the late Arkady Fomin. During that same time, Elizabeth participated in the New Conservatory of Dallas and performed in the “2014 Next Generation Concert”. Mr.Fomin was a guiding and nurturing influence for Elizabeth and is dearly missed. One final gift from Mr. Foman was the introduction of Mr. Jan Sloman who took over as Elizabeth's musical instructor and mentor in the fall of 2014. Elizabeth is an inquisitive, nine year old student. She is an avid reader; in fact, she is the number one student in her homeschool class while enjoying history, Shakespeare, and foreign languages. Elizabeth also looks forward to her evening swim practices with the Dallas Mustang Swim Team.


Laura Logan Brandenburg, harp

Laura Logan Brandenburg has served on the Texas Christian University School of Music faculty since 2001, where she teaches harp and harp pedagogy, coaches the TCU Harp Ensemble and is director of the TCU Summer Harp Workshop. She is founder, director and member of the Octavia Harp Ensemble, performing in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and beyond for the past 20 years. A highly regarded free lance harpist, Laura currently serves as Principal Harp with the Lewisville Lake Symphony. She held the position of Principal Harp with the Richardson Symphony Orchestra from 1990 – 2010 as well as Principal Harp in the Oklahoma City Philharmonic from 1995 - 1997. Her recent adventures on harp include concertizing with Jeff Walters as The Logan/Walters Harp Duo, performing all original transcriptions and arrangements for two harps. 

Active as a camp clinician specializing in harp ensemble repertoire, Laura was founder and director of the popular HarpFire summer camp, which celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2010. In 2011, she directed one of two Institute Ensembles at the 9th Summer Institute of the American Harp Society. 

She has been the head of the TCU Summer Harp Workshop since 2012. Laura has served as a long time board member of the American Harp Society in Dallas chapter and is currently the Southwest Region Director of the AHS. In addition to her duties at TCU, she maintains an active private Suzuki harp studio.

Laura considers her most significant lifetime achievement to be her two sons, Ethan and Luke, who have fallen asleep to the sound of harp music their entire lives and never once complained.  


Brent Buemi, clarinet

Brent Buemi graduated with a Master of Music degree in clarinet performance at Southern Methodist University in May 2010. He received a Bachelor of Music degree in clarinet performance at Southern Methodist University in 2008 and studied with Paul Garner, Associate Prinicpal Clarinet of the Dallas Symphony. Brent grew up in Duncanville, Texas and first studied with Jeff Garcia. He currently is the second clarinetist of the Las Colinas Symphony. He maintains a private studio and freelances in the D/FW area and has performed for The Wagner Society, Walden Chamber Society, Music in the Mountains, Pro Musica and Voices of Change.


Cole Burger, piano

Dr. Cole Burger serves as Instructor in the College of Musical Arts at Bowling Green State University, where he teaches and coordinates class piano and piano pedagogy. Previous places of employment include the University of Nebraska at Omaha, the University of Texas, the Levine School of Music, and Armstrong Community Music School. Cole is also on the faculties of Lutheran Summer Music and Camp Encore/Coda. Dr. Burger holds degrees in piano performance and economics from Northwestern University and the University of Texas.

He has performed in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall as a First Place Winner of the American Protégé International Piano and Strings Competition. Other performances include the conferences of the National Flute Association, International Double Reed Society, College Music Society, and Music Teachers National Association, in addition to venues throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. He has also given benefit recitals for worthy non-profit organizations that have raised more than $50,000. For more details, please visit


Young-Hyun Cho, piano

Young-Hyun Cho currently serves as Assistant Professor of Piano on the faculty at The University of Texas at Arlington. She received her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Eastman School of Music of University of Rochester, Master of Music and a Graduate Performance Diploma from Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University, and Bachelor of Music from Seoul National University. Her major teachers include Nelita True, Boris Slutsky, and Mi-Kyung Kim.

As an international performer, Dr. Cho has performed with the Seoul National Symphony, Korean Broadcasting System Symphony, Korean Symphony, Daejeon Philharmonic, International Chamber Ensemble of Rome, Eurasian Philharmonic, Holland Symphony, Eastman Symphony, and The University of Texas at Arlington Orchestra. Her accolades on the national and international piano competition circuit numerous competing in Louisiana International Piano Competition, Virginia Waring International Piano Competition, the Harrison Winter Competition, Eastman Concerto Competition, Korea Music Association Competition, Seoul Arts Center Orchestral Festival Music Competition, KBS Music Competition, and the JoongAng Times Music Competition. 

Over the past several years, Dr. Cho has been invited to present recitals and master classes across North America, Asia, and Europe. She has appeared as invited guest artists/faculty at California State University, Levine School of Music, Louisiana State University, University of Central Oklahoma, Humboldt State University, Bowling Green State University, Auburn University, South Carolina State University, Missouri State University, Southern Methodist University, Texas Christian University, Baylor University, Oakland University, McNeese State University, Henderson State University, Texas State University, West Texas A&M University, Midwestern State University, Morningside College, Briar Cliff University, Northwestern College, Texas Music Teachers Association, German Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand and Seoul, Korea, AUA Auditorium in Chiang Mai, Thailand, the University-College Sedaya International in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, the World Piano Conference in Serbia, Regensburg University in Germany, IUGTE Conference in Austria, Yonsei University and Seoul National University in Seoul, Korea. 

Dr. Cho has been invited to adjudicate as a juror in numerous music competitions, including Dallas Chamber Symphony International Piano Competition, World Piano Teachers Association International Piano Competition, and Young Artists Piano Competition. 

She taught as a guest faculty at 2013 Piano Texas International Academy and Festival in collaboration with 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. 


Ron Clinton, piano

Dr. Ron Clinton currently serves as Executive Vice President for Instruction at Northeast Texas Community College in Mt. Pleasant, TX. Before coming to NTCC as a faculty member in music and humanities, he performed extensively throughout the United States, Asia and South America as a concert pianist, appearing as guest soloist with symphony orchestras in Houston, Austin, Lubbock, and the Republic of South Korea. In 1983, he was awarded a Doctor’s Degree from the University of Texas at Austin in Piano Performance where he studied with William Race and performed in master classes with such notable artists as Augustin Anievas, Claude Frank, Anton Kuerti, and Leon Fleisher. He later went on to serve as artist in residence at the University of Mokwon in Taejon, South Korea.

During the 2000-2001 academic year, Dr. Clinton was invited to join the faculty at the Conservatory of Music at the University of Southern Chile in Valdivia, Chile where he taught piano, served as guest conductor of the Conservatory Orchestra Austral de Chile, and performed concerts throughout the country, including performances at the prestigious Frutillar International Music Festival in southern Chile. He was married to Betty Whitlock (a violinist and former MVM Board member) for 36 years until her recent passing and has two children, Amy Muldoon and Evan Clinton. 


Karah Cruse, violin

Karah Cruse, age 13, lives in Roanoke where she attends Chapel Hill Christian Academy. She began studying the violin at the age of 4. As a member of the Fort Worth Youth Orchestra, she won both the 2010 Young Performer’s Concerto Competition and the 2011 Young Artist’s Concerto Competition and performed them both with the orchestra. Karah was a top prize winner in the Young String Soloist’s Competition for 2012 and again in 2013 as well as the 2013 and 2014 DMTA Symphonic Festival. She enjoys attending the Institute for Strings during the summer.


Dante Davis, baritone

Dallas native, Dante’ Davis is a graduate from The University of the Arts in Philadelphia, PA with a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance. While attending the University Davis was a featured soloist in various opera scenes programs playing roles such as Porgy (Porgy and Bess) and Don Giovanni (Don Giovanni). He has participated in numerous master classes with notable opera singers including George Shirley and Shirley Verrett. In 2006-2007 He was a guest artist with Opera North participating in their outreach program “Opera in the Schools.” 

Also in 2006 Davis was the Grand Prize Winner in the Pro-Arts Society Vocal Scholarship Competition and was a finalist in the Leontyne Price Vocal Arts Competition. He did extensive solo work at various churches in the Philadelphia area and in 2007 did his first live recording of Handel’s Messiah with Drexel United Methodist Church Chorale. During the 32nd season of the Black Academy of Arts and Letters under the direction of Curtis King Mr. Davis was a featured artist in The Dallas Tenors a highlighted performance of Davis’ young career.  


Nathaniel Earhart, guitar

Nathaniel holds two degrees from Southern Methodist University, a B.M. and M.M., both in Guitar Performance. He currently teaches classical guitar as an adjunct professor at Collin College, Hill College (Hillsboro, Cleburne campuses), and North Lake College in Irving. Prizes he has won include, first prize in the duet division in the professional/college category of the 11th UT Brownsville guitar competition, and the 2013 Dallas Allegro Guitar Society’s open audition/competition. In July 2013 Nathaniel was a top finalist in the prestigious Taxco, Mexico International Guitar Competition.

Earhart is currently working on a Performers Diploma from SMU also on a full tuition scholarship, candidate May 2016.


Adam Gordon, Baroque trumpet

Adam Gordon is Assistant Principal Trumpet of the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra. Previously he was Principal Trumpet of the Sacramento Symphony, Opera San Jose, the Monterey County Symphony, and the Cabrillo Festival Orchestra. Adam has performed with the San Francisco Symphony, Opera, and Ballet orchestras. Overseas, he has performed with the Jerusalem Symphony and the National Orchestra of Mexico. Adam also performs on baroque trumpet with Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra (San Francisco), Mercury Baroque (Houston), Banchetto Musicale (Boston), Portland Baroque Orchestra (OR) and many other period instrument groups across the US. He also teaches Baroque trumpet at the University of North Texas. 


Amy Gustafson, piano

Yamaha Artist Amy E. Gustafson, has performed around the United States, Eastern and Western Europe and Asia. She has won numerous awards, including second prize in the International Young Artists Piano Competition, second prize in the Joyce Dutka Arts Foundation Competition, and the Special Presentation Award and Alumni Presentation Award from Artists International. 

Recent performances include two tours in China, a ten-recital tour in the south of the United States, solo recitals in Spain, a solo recital at Trinity Church Wall Street’s Concerts at One, as well as solo recitals at Weill Recital Hall, Steinway Hall, the Tenri Cultural Institute, CAMI Hall, and the Kosciuszko Foundation. Her major teachers include Julian Martin, Andre-Michel Schub, Miyoko Lotto, and Constance Keene.

Gustafson is a Resident Teaching Artist at Bloomingdale School of Music, the founding director of The Stony Brook International Piano Festival (, the Vice-Director of the Gijon International Piano Festival (, and the Vice-President of the Spanish American Music Council ( HTTP://WWW.AMYGUSTAFSON.COM


Emily High Hartnett, piano

Emily High Hartnett, a native of Brownsville, Tennessee, came to Texas to attend the University of North Texas. After studying there with Silvio Scionti and Stefan Bardas, she received her M.Mus. degree with a major in Performance under the guidance of Dalies Frantz at the University of Texas. She has performed widely as soloist, accompanist and as a member of various ensembles in both Tennessee and Texas.  


Randall Hooper, conductor

Dr. Randall Hooper, the Director of Vocal Activities at Texas A&M University-Commerce, conducts of the University Chorale, Men’s Chorus, Women’s Chorus, University Singers and the Chamber Singers while overseeing the masters program in choral conducting and teaching undergraduate courses in conducting and music education.

Dr. Hooper earned the Bachelor of Music of Education degree from Texas State University, the Master of Music degree in choral conducting from Baylor University where he studied with Donald Bailey, and the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in choral conducting from Louisiana State University where he studied with Kenneth Fulton and Sara Lynn Baird.

Prior to his position at Texas A&M University-Commerce, Dr. Hooper held similar positions at Tennessee Tech University, Georgia State University and taught high school choral music for eleven years in Texas.

Dr. Hooper has been invited to conduct honor choirs, adjudicate and present interest sessions and in-services throughout the south and southwest. Choirs under Dr. Hooper’s leadership have performed in Carnegie Hall, by invitation for the Southwestern Division of the American Choral Directors Association, the Tennessee Music Educators Association Conference, the Georgia Music Educators Association and for the International Anthony Burgess Foundation Symposium in Liverpool, England along with touring Germany, Austria, England and France. In 2005, Dr. Hooper was invited to present a paper on the choral music of Anthony Burgess for the International Anthony Burgess Foundation Symposium in Manchester, England which was published in Anthony Burgess and Modernity. In 2012, Dr. Hooper was the guest conductor for the Festival Internacional de Música de Campina Grande in Brazil. The A&M Commerce Chorale collaborated with the A&M Commerce Wind Ensemble in a performance in Carnegie Hall and for the Southwestern division of the College Band Directors National Association. In July of 2013, the A&M Commerce Chorale was invited to perform at the Festival Internacional de Música de Campina Grande in Brazil.
Dr. Hooper has served as the Texas Choral Director’s Association as the College and Community Choir Vice President.

He is also actively involved with church music and musical theatre. He has served as music director for churches in Texas, Louisiana, Tennessee and Georgia. He is currently the Director of Music of Kavanaugh UMC in Greenville, TX. He has served as the musical director for San Marcos Summer Theatre, Playmakers of Baton Rouge, LA and the Cookeville Children’s Theatre in Cookeville, TN.


Peter Isaacson, violin

Peter Isaacson is Associate Professor of violin at Hardin-Simmons University and Director of the Hardin-Simmons University Orchestra. He earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Kentucky in 2006 and holds a Master of Music degree from the Juilliard School and a Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music. His primary teachers have been Catherine Tait, Sally Thomas, Renato Bonicini, Stephen Clapp and Daniel Mason. During the course of his applied study, Mr. Isaacson performed in masterclasses with Peter Salaff and Jaime Laredo. His chamber studies have been with members of the Cleveland and Audubon String Quartets, Toby Appel, John Graham, André Emilianoff, Lewis Kaplan and Zvi Zeitlin. 

As an active performer, Mr. Isaacson has performed with the Abilene Chamber Players, Soundscapes, the Lenape Chamber Ensemble, Craftsbury Chamber Players and the Absolute Ensemble in New York City. He has also performed on the Musica Viva concert series, the Focus Festival, Music at Marvin, San Angelo Museum concerts and the Wednesdays at One concert series in Alice Tully Hall. His performances have been broadcast on the Woodsongs Radio Hour and WRGV Public Radio in Georgetown, Kentucky. 

Mr. Isaacson has held faculty positions at Missouri State University (formerly Southwest Missouri State), Cumberland College, Camp Encore/Coda, the American Festival for the Arts in Houston, Texas, Kentucky Governor’s School for the Arts, and the Abilene Summer Music Festival where he serves as Artistic Director. As a member of the Niles String Quartet, he was a semi-finalist at the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition and was selected to participate in the Audubon String Quartet Seminar at Virginia Tech. Mr. Isaacson has collaborated in performance with members of the Audubon String Quartet, Meliora Winds, Phil Ying, and folk-singer Michael Jonathan. In 2010, Mr. Isaacson released a recording of chamber works by Josef Rheinberger for Centaur Records. During the summer of 2011, Mr. Isaacson performed concerts with the Abilene Chamber Players in London, England at the Space, St. Georges, Bloomsbury and Southwark Cathedral. Also in 2011, Mr. Isaacson pursued further study in pedagogy at the Royal College of Music in London through interviews with Professor Jan Repko along with observations of studio teaching and masterclasses. In the summer of 2013, Mr. Isaacson performed concerts with the Abilene Chamber Players in at the Sala Falck and the Conservatory in Milan, Italy. 


Clara Kim, violin

Clara Kim was born in 2003 in Grand Rapids, MI. She started taking violin lessons when she was four and a half years old. She moved to Texas with her family in 2013. Her previous violin teacher was Mrs. Orit Beder. She is a student of Mr. Jan Sloman since September 2014. She is in 6th grade and attends Pioneer Heritage Middle School. She is also a member of PHMS Orchestra.


Eunice Keem, violin
Born in Chicago, violinist Eunice Keem joined the Dallas Symphony in September of 2011. She has first prizes at the Kingsville International Competition, Johansen International Competition, ASTA National Competition, and Carnegie Mellon University¹s Concerto Competition (both as a freshman and graduate student). She was also a top prizewinner at the Irving Klein, WAMSO, Schadt, Sorantin, and Corpus Christi International Competitions, and was awarded the Paganini Prize in the 7th International Violin Competition of Indianapolis.
Eunice has been a featured soloist with numerous orchestras throughout the United States, and has given solo recitals across the states and in Europe. An avid chamber musician, she has received first prizes in the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition and Rembrandt Chamber Players Competition. She was a founding member of Carnegie Mellon University's Starling Quartet, having performed across the United States, China, Costa Rica, and France.
Eunice completed her studies at Carnegie Mellon University under Professor Cyrus Forough. She has also participated in the Chateau de Champs Masterclasses in Paris and the Rencontres Musicales Internationales des Graves in Bordeaux, France, Meadowmount School of Music, Bowdoin International Music Festival, Sarasota Music Festival, the Atlantic Music Festival, and the International Music Academy in Pilsen, Czech Republic as a junior faculty member. 


Camille King, soprano

Camille King, soprano, joined the voice faculty of Southern Methodist University in the Meadows School of the Arts in 2010 where she is Adjunct Assistant Professor of Voice. She received a Bachelor of Arts in French from the University of California. She studied voice with French Canadian tenor, Leopold Simoneau, at the San Francisco Conservatory and later with American soprano, Judith Raskin, at the Manhattan School of Music. Her career in opera has included leading roles in productions with Rome Opera, Innsbruck Opera, San Francisco Opera, Minnesota Opera, Central City Opera, Chautauqua Opera and Colorado Opera Festival. She has also appeared as a featured soloist with the Los Angeles Master Chorale, the Virginia Symphony, Santa Barbara Symphony, the Tulsa Oratorio Society and the Los Angeles Mozart Orchestra. In Texas she has performed with the Richardson Symphony, the Fort Worth Symphony, the Austin Symphony and Texas Camerata.

She continues to have an active career in chamber music, recital and oratorio performances throughout the United States where she is particularly known for her interpretation of the works of Mozart, early music and French vocal repertoire.

Recent performances include a concert of early music with members of the Philharmonia Baroque in Port Townsend, WA for their Centrum concert series and a program of French chamber music in Los Angeles which included La Bonne Chanson by Faure. Performances in 2014 include Bach Cantatas 51 and 199 in Fort Worth and Dallas, a concert of chamber music and lieder by Schubert in Los Angeles and an early music concert with Texas Camerata at the Kimbell Museum in Fort Worth . In 2015 Ms. King will perform the rarely heard Parafrasi del Christus by Donizetti at St. Thomas Aquinas in Dallas and a recital with trumpet, Adam Gordon at the Downtown Dallas Public Library. Recently she will performed La Bonne Chanson by Faure with string quintet and piano on a faculty recital at Southern Methodist University.


Joseph Kingma, piano

Award winning pianist Joseph Stern Kingma has been praised by the Musical Arts Society of New Orleans for his “dazzling technique”, and his interpretation of Liszt's Sonata in B minor was described as an “especially personal account". He has won prizes at numerous competitions, including the 2010 Brevard Music Festival Piano Competition, the 2010 Rice University Concerto Competition, and the 2012 Sorantin International Young Artist Competition, and has also competed internationally as a semi-finalist in the 2010 American Paderewski International Piano Competition, the 2011 Concert Artist Guild International Competition, and the 2012 New Orleans International Competition.

Mr. Kingma has performed across the United States in such venues as the St. Cecelia Music Society in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Roussel Hall in New Orleans, Louisiana, Jones Hall, Stude Concert Hall and Duncan Recital Hall in Houston, Texas, among many others. He was recently featured as a guest artist on Lone Star College's Recital Series and the Concert Series of First Presbyterian Church of New Canaan. This season's engagements include performances with the Manassas Symphony Orchestra, Illinois Valley Symphony Orchestra and the Brazos Chamber Orchestra, among other solo engagements including but not limited to Chicago, Dallas, and Houston.

He has taught at the Kingwood Music School and Houston's First Baptist School of Fine Arts. He was also a judge for the first annual Houston Music Teachers Association Bach-Baroque Festival Competition. Currently he teaches privately out of his home in Pflugerville, TX.

Mr. Kingma’s earned his BM and MM from Rice University, were he studied under the tutelage of Dr. Robert Roux. Former teachers include John Mortensen, Aviram Reichert, Philip Pletcher, and Elena Arseniev. He currently studies with Anton Nel at University of Texas at Austin where he is a first-year DMA student.


Mark Landson, Violin/Viola

Mark Landson is a violinist, violist, composer, and the founder and Director of Open Classical. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, he studied with noted professors Bruce Plumb, George Taylor, and James Dunham, violist of the Cleveland Quartet. Mr. Landson has performed throughout the United States and Europe as a member of various orchestras and chamber ensembles including the Rochester Philharmonic, the New American Chamber Orchestra, and La Orquesta de Granada (the Orchestra of Granada, Spain).

During his four years with La Orquesta de Granada he toured throughout Europe and Morocco, recorded several compact discs, and appeared on television and Spanish national radio in both orchestral and chamber music groups. At this time he was also a member of the Boccherini String Quartet, which toured in Spain and Morroco, playing 15-20 concerts per year and performed in festivals with some of Europe's well-known chamber ensembles. During this time, he began to develop a new type of classical composition melding classical motivic development with rock and pop sensibilities of harmony and pacing, and also was hired to create orchestral arrangements for the Orchestra of Granada.

Upon returning to the United States, Tom Sime of The Dallas Morning News wrote of Mark Landson, “a talented young composer...reminiscient of Stravinsky at his most lyrical”. Soon after, he formed Neo Camerata, a group dedicated to performing his classical chamber music works in a variety of settings, including rock clubs and classical concert halls. The focus for Neo Camerata was to prove that new classical music could be received well in all manner of venues and in front of very diverse audiences. Neo Camerata performed on programs with both classical orchestras (Oakland East Bay Symphony and the Irving Symphony) in large concert halls (Kennedy Center in Washington, DC) and also small to medium sized rock clubs with rock and pop artists, both of local and international acclaim (Ben Jelen and Rejane Magloire from Technotronic).

In 2005, Neo Camerata released recordings of Mark Landson’s chamber music (“Travels”, on New Roads Records/Well-Tempered), and also collaborated with Ms. Magloire on the recording of her hip-hopera “Forbidden Opera”, which was released on EMI. Neo Camerata performed at the Cannes Film Festival and also in Vienna, Austria with Ms Magloire. As with all rock/pop collaborations the group took part in, these concerts featured Neo Camerata both as support to Ms Magloire’s hip-hop music and also as a featured performer of Landson’s classical chamber music on the same programs.

In 2011, Landson discovered that a doctoral piano student had begun an open mic for classical music at a local coffeeshop/restaurant. He saw great potential in the idea, and when the people running it decided to call it quits soon after, Landson eagerly accepted the challenge of developing the concept into a series of programs which would attempt to create a ground-up community of support for alternative presentations of classical music. The organization soon after became known as Open Classical, to reflect not only the origins as the classical open mic, but also to showcase the welcoming spirit of opening classical music to a broader spectrum of music lovers. Now in its third year of existence, Open Classical produces a variety of innovative classical music programming, including costumed variety shows, amplified chamber music concerts and dinner concerts as well as the signature Classical Open Mic, both in Dallas and surounding areas.


Megan Lin, violin

Megan Lin, 14, started learning violin at the age of 4, and at age 8 she starting learning piano. In 2010 she got Honorable Mention in the Collin County Young Artist Competition Junior Violin division, and she got 2nd place in TMEA Trophy Competition for piano in 2011, and Honorable Mention in 2012. Over the years Megan has joined three different orchestras. In 2006 she joined DAAYO (Dallas Asian American Youth Orchestra), and 2 years later she joined GDYO (Greater Dallas Youth Orchestras). In 2012, she played in the New Conservatory of Dallas until its disbandment in 2014. In 6th grade, she placed third in the Sinfonia All Region Orchestra, and in both 7th grade and 8th grade, she was concertmistress in the Chamber All Region Orchestra. Her interests include reading and she is a straight A student.


Sheng-hsin Lin, clarinet

Born in Tainan, Taiwan, Sheng-hsin Lin is currently a doctoral candidate in clarinet performance at the University of North Texas (UNT) under the tutelage of Professor John Scott. She has served as the assistant principal clarinet of both the Tainan and Chi-Mei Symphony Orchestras in Taiwan. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from National Kaohsiung Normal University in Taiwan and a Master of Music in clarinet performance from Indiana University at Bloomington where she studied with James Campbell. From 2010 to 2013, she was a Teaching Fellow at the UNT College of Music. 

Ms. Lin is an active performer and participates in various ensembles and performances. Some of her appearances include a clarinet and guitar duo recital at La Casa de la Cultura Azcapotzalco, a lecture recital presenting Taiwanese folk music at El Colegio Azcapotzalco in Mexico City, and Trio Indiana Concert (IU Faculty Chamber Concert/Bernard Portnoy Memorial Concert). In addition to traditional clarinet repertoire, Ms. Lin enjoys contemporary works and has premiered many Taiwanese compositions. Important performances include Dr. Sansan Chien’s Dolly's Family for solo clarinet at the International Conference on Musical Arts and Pedagogy, Dr. Chien’s Overture to Medusa as the clarinet soloist with the NKNU Music Department Orchestra, and Tsen-Ling Lin’s The Memory of Clarinet, Interactive Music for Clarinet and Computer. At UNT, she has performed with the Center for Chamber Music’s Graduate Woodwind Quintet, the Symphony Orchestra, the Wind Ensemble, NOVA (New Music Ensemble), and has participated in CEMI (Center for Experimental Music & Intermedia) Concerts.

She was awarded the first place at the Taiwan Arts Cup Competition, a winner of the Concerto Competition at the NKNU Music Department for her performance of Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto, and the Tainan Young Musician Competition. Other accolades include the Music Merit Award, the Earl O. Bates Scholarship, and the Dean’s Scholarship from Indiana University at Bloomington. She also won the George and Sandy Papich Chamber Scholarship, the Marceau C. Myers Memorial Scholarship, and the Woodwind/Percussion Scholarship from UNT. 

Ms. Lin has participated in a series of GIA recording projects and has performed at the national conferences of symphonic bands and ensembles such as WASBE (World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles) and CBDNA (College Band Directors National Association) under the baton of Eugene Corporon with the UNT Wind Symphony. Lin seeks to use her clarinet as a method to build friendships between people from different cultures and origins. 


Anastasia Markina, piano

Anastasia Markina was born in St. Petersburg, Russia in 1978. She started playing piano when she was almost four winning her first competition six years later. Her first teacher, Tatyana Shrago led her to win her first international piano competition in Marsala, Italy in 1992. After graduating from Music School, she took lessons with Alexander Mndoyants and Maria Mekler. In 1994, she entered the Rimsky-Korsakov College of Music where she studied for four years in the studio of Mary Guseva, student of Pavel Serebryakov. While there, she won several international piano competitions, including 1st prize at the 1st International Maria Yudina Piano Competition, 1st prize in solo and 1st prize in chamber music at the Beach of Hope International Music Festival and Competition in Dobrich-Albena, Bulgaria, and was one of the three prize winners at the Peter the Great Music Festival in Groningen, Holland in 1997.

After receiving her diploma with honors from the College of Music, she was invited to study in the United States by Victor Rosenbaum, well-known teacher and pianist, and director of the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, MA. In 1999, she moved to the Dallas-Fort Worth area to continue her education at the University of North Texas in the studio of Prof. Vladimir Viardo (Gold medalist of the 1973 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition). While studying at UNT, she continued winning competitions in the United States, including 1st prize at the San Angelo Sorantin International Music Competition, 1st prize at the First Boesendorfer International Piano Competition, 1st and Grand prize at the Young Texas Artist Music Competition, and 2nd prize at the First Jose Iturbi Music Competition both in 2007 and 2008. In November 2005, she has performed Rachmaninoff's Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini with the San Angelo Symphony under Hector Guzman. In January 2007, she has performed Ravel Piano Concerto in G with the Phoenix Symphony under Lawrence Golan. She performed with Jalisco Philharmonic under Jules Gail and Conroe Symphony in summer of 2008. Her upcoming performances include solo, chamber music and orchestra appearances in the United States and Europe. She is currently pursuing her Artist Certificate Diploma.



Alessandro Mazzamuto, piano

Pianist Alessandro Mazzamuto is “one of the most inspiring, extraordinary pianists that I have had the joy to hear” writes Martha Argerich. He is “no virtuoso of show, no ruthless technician, but a pianist absorbed in the music who plays with as much spontaneity as poetry,” claims Pizzicato Magazine. Winner of International Classical Music Awards’ 2013 Young Instrumental Artist of the Year, the 26-year-old Sicilian pianist has won more than 60 national and international competitions in piano and chamber music.

Mazzamuto has appeared as soloist with orchestras such as La Verdi (Milan), the Rias Berlin Youth Orchestra (Germany), the Chamber Orchestra of Kiev (Ukraine), the Philharmonic Orchestra of Ploesti (Romania), and the Bacau Philharmonic Orchestra (Romania), with conductors such as Daisuke Soga, Amaury du Closel, John Axelrod, Tomasz Bugaj, Ovidiu Balan, Valentin Doni, Ovidiu Marinescu, and Epifanio Comis. He has performed in numerous European and American venues such as the Salle Cortot (Paris), La Fenice (Venice), Maly Hall of the Moscow Conservatoire (Russia), University Romano of Bacau (Romania), Il Tempio (Florence), Auditorium Giuseppe Verdi (Milan), Caruth Auditorium (Dallas), and the Opera House Massimo Bellini (Italy).

Finalist at the 58th edition of the prestigious Ferruccio Busoni International Piano Competition in 2011, Alessandro Mazzamuto was awarded the special prize "Gianandrea Lodovici," which consisted in the production of a CD for the German label ARTS with worldwide distribution. This prize was given at the discretion of the president of the jury, Martha Argerich, being chosen for “a particular depth and originality of interpretation." Thanks to the recording of the above-mentioned CD with music by Rachmaninov, Mazzamuto, together with the ARTS record company, was awarded by international critics the prize "Supersonic - Pizzicato" in 2012. Most recently, Alessandro became a winner of 2014 Center for Musical Excellence (CME) International Grant, Birte Moller Young Artists Award, and a CME Young Artist. His New York debut recital at Carnegie Weill Recital Hall will take place in 2015.

Alessandro Mazzamuto graduated with honors from the Music Institute "Vincenzo Bellini" in Catania, under the guidance of Epifanio Comis. He also studied International Piano Academy in Imola. Currently, Alessandro is a student in the Performers Diploma program at SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts in Dallas, TX, where he studies with Professors Carol Leone and Joaquin Achucarro.

Alessandro has taught piano at the Musical Institute "Pietro Vinci" in Caltagirone (Italy), the Municipal Institute "Giuseppe Privitera" in Syracuse (Italy) and the Accademia Musicale Siciliana in Adrano (Italy). He and his brother, violinist Lorenzo Mazzamuto, perform often as a celebrated duo. 


Yuxin Mei, Pipa 

Yuxin Mei, a Pipa performer, is a current graduate student of Ethnomusicology in UNT. Ms. Mei completed a bachelor and a master degree of Pipa Performance and Education in China Conservatory of Music, Bei Jing, and Xing Hai Conservatory of Music, Guang Zhou, in China. From 2006-2012, she was a faculty member teaching in Xing Hai Conservatory of Music. Before that, she was an Artistic Director and Soloist of Chinese Music Chamber Orchestra, Zhu Hai. 

Ms. Mei started her career as a professional musician when she became the soloist of Chinese Music Chamber Orchestra, Zhu Hai. From 1997 to 2012, Mei performed the concerts in China, Portugal, Singapore, France, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macau and other countries and regions. She taught the master classes in Macau Art School and Chong Hong Chinese Music Association, Macau. As a Chinese Culture Promotion Ambassador, Mei performed concert tours in Norway, 2012, 2013 and 2014.


Marcelo Melo, Guitar

Marcelo Melo is a guitarist and composer from Brazil. He began his jazz guitar studies at Musicians Institute – GIT, California. Since then, he has played and recorded with many Brazilian musicians. Marcelo is currently attending the Jazz Studies Program at the University of North Texas. Since coming to UNT in Fall 2013 he has played with the Super 400 and the L-5 Jazz Guitar Ensembles. 


Menagerie Multicultural Ensemble

The Menagerie Multicultural Ensemble was founded in March 2014 on the principles of friendship and musicianship amongst differing countries, cultures, and languages. The ensemble aims to seek new possibilities in unorthodox performance formats and has benefited from the resources of one of the largest comprehensive music schools in the world; the University of North Texas. Musicians in the ensemble represent their home countries including Brazil, Thailand, Taiwan, China, Columbia, and the United States. They also encompass varying music majors such as Classical Performance, Jazz, and Ethnomusicology. The instrumentation is non-traditional and flexible with the incorporation of the clarinet, pipa, violin, flute, a jazz rhythm section, and world percussion. The mission of Menagerie is to explore multicultural music making in an increasingly diverse world.

Collectively, Menagerie believes that music is the universal language of the world and can bring people together in common expression. Through the process of creating music together, the ensemble is able to create an innovative sound for the world to unlock the barriers of varying nations, histories, and beliefs. The power of music has been known to humanity at all points in time and to all peoples. It is the human language that bridges generations and is the originality the ensemble. 

Performers are: Sheng-hsin Lin (Taiwan) - Clarinet; Marcelo Melo (Brazil) - Guitar; Yuxin Mei (China) - Pipa; Daniel Pardo (Colombia) - Flute; Sopon “Jokobo” Suwannakit (Thailand) - Jazz Piano; Nicholas Rothouse (USA) - World Percussion; and Christopher Wright (USA) - Double Bass.


Mark Miller, violin

Presently concertmaster of the East Texas Orchestra, violinist Mark Miller also performs with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra and other area ensembles. He is a founder and president of Mount Vernon Music Association, a membership-based nonprofit devoted to bringing outstanding performances of classical, cultural and jazz chamber music to underserved audiences in rural Northeast Texas. He also co-directs the chamber series “The Color of Sound” at Texas A&M University – Commerce, where for eleven years he taught and performed as an Artist-in-Residence with his wife, violist Ute Miller, and the ensemble Duo Renard. Their most recent recording, on the Fleur de Son label, is of music by Mozart and contemporary composer Benedikt Brydern. Following studies at SUNY Purchase, Indiana University - Bloomington and Boston University, Mark studied with Jürgen Kussmaul in Germany, where he was assistant concertmaster in the Robert Schumann Chamber Orchestra of Düsseldorf and a member of the Beethoven Orchester Bonn. He has appeared as soloist with the East Texas Symphony Orchestra.  


Ute Miller, viola

Ute Miller serves as principal violist of the East Texas Symphony, and performs regularly with the Dallas and Fort Worth Symphony Orchestras. She has appeared as a soloist with the East Texas Symphony Orchestra. Ute is a founder, treasurer and managing director of Mount Vernon Music Association. Her musical studies include the prestigious Konzertexamen diploma from the Robert Schumann Hochschule Düsseldorf, and a year at Boston University as a student of Raphael Hillyer, founding member of the Juilliard Quartet. In addition to playing with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony, she served for seven years as assistant principal violist of the Gürzenich Orchester-Cologne Philharmonic, and for eight years as principal violist of the Dallas Opera Orchestra. 


Mount Vernon Music

The Mount Vernon Music Association is a membership-based nonprofit devoted to bringing outstanding performances of classical, cultural and jazz chamber music to underserved audiences in rural Northeast Texas. The group personnel varies depending on what is programmed. For this concert Mark Miller, violin, Ute Miller, viola and Ron Clinton, piano will play.




Thiago Nascimento, Piano

Thiago Nascimento is a pianist praised for his innate musicality, impressive technique, and ability to improvise in a variety of styles. Born in Brazil, he was raised in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. His unique talents span classical piano technique, expressive musicality, "stride" jazz piano, improvisation and composition. In addition, his comedic nature and ability to seamlessly integrate slapstick comedy and combine any melodic fragment into any other piece of music on the spur of the moment (no matter how serious or inappropriate) inevitably brings to mind visions of a young Victor Borge. Belying his fluency of pianistic gymnastics, which might lead one to believe his first toy as a child was a grand piano, Mr. Nascimento in fact only began teaching himself how to play piano at the age of thirteen and began studying classical piano with a teacher at fifteen, an age when most child prodigies are already entering their mid-life crisis. Nonetheless, after a year of study, he was accepted into Dallas' Booker T. Washington arts magnet high school. He began his college studies at Peabody Conservatory and continued them at Southern Methodist University, where he graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor of Music degree as a student of Alessio Bax. Thiago currently works as a professional pianist in the DFW area, equally at home is the realms of classical, jazz, ballet, and musical theater.


Gretchen Nichols, cello

Gretchen Nichols began her study of the cello with Audrey Anastasi, who was a longtime member of the Dallas Symphony. In her teen and college years at SMU she studied with Lev Aronson, who was Principal Cellist of the Dallas Symphony for many years. Later she studied with Yves L'Helgoual'ch. She has played in many local and regional orchestras, churches, and various ensembles around Dallas. She has been a coach for the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra for 15 years. She plays in a string trio for Texas Winds which is a Musical Outreach Organization and for The Singapore Slingers which is a group that plays music from 1900 to 1935. 


Jeffery Ou, piano

Taiwanese-American pianist, conductor and former television personality Jeffery Ou (b. 1991) is a fast-rising artist in his generation and today's concert circuit. At just 23, he has nevertheless established a rich and diverse musical upbringing that distinguishes himself from many of today's forthcoming young artists. bsp;

A previously avid competitor throughout his teenage years, Ou performed to great acclaim in virtually countless events, including, to name a few: 2004 North Texas Youth Music Competition (First Prize and Overall Grand Prize Winner); 2006 Collin County Young Artist Competition (Third Prize); 2006 Northeast Texas Piano Competition (Second Prize overall); three-time prizewinner in the Dallas Symphonic Festival (2006-2008); two-time prizewinner in the Baylor-Waco Piano Competition (2006, 2008). He was a Semifinalist in the 2007 Vladimir Viardo International Piano Competition, 2009 Lennox International Young Artist Competition, and 2009 Juanita Miller State Concerto Competition. He was also a Finalist in the 2009 Vernell Gregg (national) Young Artist Competition and the 2009 Fort Worth Symphony Young Artist Competition. In 2014, Ou was named the runner-up for the Isabel Scionti Piano Performance Scholarship Fund, an annual award given to one pianist each from the University of North Texas and Texas Women's University in Denton.

Ou is perhaps best known for his brief television career when, at the age of 18, he achieved national acclaim on season 4 of NBC's summer reality hit, "America's Got Talent." He would advance to the Top 48 Quarterfinals and ultimately into the Top 20 Semifinals, with his performances broadcast live to thousands around the US weekly, and to studio audiences which included Piers Morgan, Sharon Osbourne, David Hasselhoff and Nick Cannon. This feat, stemming from an initial pool of tens of thousands of individuals auditioning across the nation (including record-breaking numbers in Houston, TX where Ou auditioned), launched the young pianist into a period of hometown celebrity for the latter half of 2009. In October of that year, then-mayor of the City of Carrollton, Ronald Branson, formally established October 18th as "Jeffery Ou Day." In addition, Ou's post-AGT homecoming was honored by then-mayor of the City of Balch Springs, Carrie Gordon, who presented him with the prestigious Key to the City as well as the role of Grand Marshal in the city's annual Christmas parade. Ou was also invited to present a public homecoming concert at DFW Piano Gallery in Dallas, in which he chronicled his performances on America's Got Talent and was presented with a crystal award to commemorate his experiences. Further honors included an invitation to appear on DIFFA 2010, hosted by Queen Latifah. Throughout late 2009, Ou was a media sensation, pursued and documented by such news agencies as Carrollton Leader, Dallas Chinese Times, Dallas Morning News, NBC, Neighborsgo, and the University of North Texas News Service. 

Jeffery Ou is currently in his second year of graduate studies at the renowned University of North Texas College of Music in Denton, Texas, where he is a candidate for the Master of Music (M.M.) Degree in Piano Performance, studying with acclaimed Mexican-American concert pianist, Gustavo Romero. He received his Bachelor of Music (B.M.) in Performance in August 2013 under Dr. Steven Harlos, Chair of the Division of Keyboard Studies at UNT. At the time of his initial enrollment in the Fall of 2009, Ou was the only freshman and one of just three undergraduate piano performance majors in the College of Music. During his undergraduate years, Ou was a 4-year member of the university's coveted and selective Emerald Eagle Scholars Program, an endeavor aimed at providing assistance to academically exceptional but financially struggling students whom are also Texas residents. In December 2009, he was recognized by the EESP as a Distinguished Scholar. From 2009-2011, he was a tenor and featured soloist in the university's Mens' Chorus. In addition to piano, Ou has also studied harpsichord with Bradley Bennight and Petra Somlai, and is currently completing a minor in Orchestral Conducting under Maestro Clay Couturiaux, Assistant Director of Orchestral Studies at UNT and director of the Concert Orchestra. From 2010-2013, Ou served as a member of the Dean's Student Advisory Council (undergraduate representative for keyboard studies division). In May 2014, Ou was inducted as a lifetime member of Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honor Society.

Most recently, Ou successfully auditioned for, and was invited to participate in, the American Institute of Musical Studies (AIMS). This intensive six-week summer workshop, founded in 1969 and held annually in the city of Graz, Austria since 1971, attracts the most promising young pianists, vocalists and instrumentalists from around the world to engage in career-building essentials through masterclasses, collaborative performances, and artistic training with respected European and American pedagogues. In addition, AIMS also offers qualified participants the opportunity to audition for agents/presenters who come to Graz in search of talent, and is regarded as a leading summer program of its kind in Europe. During his time at AIMS, Ou received intensive training in collaborative piano under Dr. Charlene Harb and vocal coaching under Patricia Amato. He made his European performance debut in July 2014, presenting works by George Gershwin, Gian Carlo Menotti and Kurt Weill in the "American Opera Classics" concert at the Graz Casineum. Additionally, he was a featured performer in the "AIMS Artists in Recital" series and toured extensively throughout Austria, to cities including Graz, Hallstatt, Salzburg and Vienna. 

Upcoming engagements for the 2014-2015 season include performances with the Shepton High School Orchestra, under Joshua Thompson (with whom Ou made his soloist debut in October 2011) in Plano, TX; a two-piano, all-Mozart recital with Polish pianist Liam Lech Furdyna, and performances with UNT's newly-assembled North Texas Collaborative Pianists (NTCP). In 2016, to commemorate Mozart's 260th anniversary, Ou will undertake an ambitious, year-long project that traverses the oeuvre of this great and beloved composer. All 19 of Mozart's complete sonatas for solo piano will be presented, in 6 recitals, within 12 months at venues across North Texas.

Over the years, Ou has performed in masterclasses for such diverse artists as David Lomascola, Juyeon Kang, Bart van Oort and Jeaneane Dowis. His past principal teachers include Wells Yi Wu (pupil of Aldo Antognazzi and Joaquin Achucarro) and Daredjan "Baya" Kakouberi (pupil of Sergei Dorenski and Vladimir Krainev). At UNT, he has also received coaching from violinist Szemoke Jobbagy, and pianists Imre Patkai and Liudmila Georgievskaya. He is in great demand locally as a collaborative musician and accompanist, and has given world premieres of works by 4 UNT students. His performances have taken him to venues across Texas, California, Louisiana, Nevada and Tennessee. In April 2014, Ou became a United States citizen.


Open Classical

Open Classical is an organization composed of orchestral and vocal musicians dedicated to performing classical music in non-traditional venues. Now in its third year of existence, Open Classical produces a variety of innovative classical music programming, including costumed variety shows, amplified chamber music concerts and dinner concerts as well as the signature Classical Open Mic, both in Dallas and surounding areas. Mark Landson is the founder and director. See their website at:



Daniel Pardo, Flute
Flutist Daniel Pardo belongs to a new artistic generation that fuses Western classical training with sounds from ethnic traditions and technology. Born in Bogota, Colombia, Daniel grew up with the music of the Andes Mountains by playing Quena and Zampoñas with folkloric ensembles. As a student at Universidad Javeriana, he studied classical flute with Maestro Fabio Londoño. Daniel became one of the most sought-after flutists of Caribbean and Spanish music, often performing live in Bogota and recording for CD productions and jingles for national radio and TV. 

After coming to the US in 2001, Daniel enlisted in the United States Marine Corps as a military musician. After serving his country, Daniel traveled throughout the US, performing and recording with producers K.C. Porter (Tom Petty), J.B. Eckl (Santana), ukelele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro (Dragon and Walking Down Rainhill), Millero Congo, and Austin, TX’s The Brew. Daniel completed studies in classical performance (B.M. with Adah Jones at Texas State University and M.A. with Mary Karen Clardy at the University of North Texas), and also a Master Certificate in Music Production from the Berklee College of Music. Representing Texas State University, he toured Italy, performed at the White House, was awarded outstanding soloist at the North Texas Jazz Festival, and presented at the International Society for Improvised Music held in CalArts 2009. In the same year, Daniel presented at the Texas Music Educators Association convention. 

After traveling through China and Hong Kong in 2012, Daniel continues to explore the sounds and possibilities of native flutes from a variety of cultures. He immerses himself into Chinese dizi and xiao, Japanese shakuhashi, Irish whistles, Persian nei, Armenian duduk, Romanian chromatic pan flute, “Keita” (a new Colombian hybrid between gaita de San Jacinto and quena), and the EWI (Electronic Wind Instrument). Daniel released his debut album Joy to the Other World in 2011. He also leads the world-music group From a Land Far Away, featuring virtuosos from Italy, China, Puerto Rico, Colombia, and the US. In 2012, Daniel appeared as a soloist with members of the Fort Worth Symphony and East Dallas Christian Church’s Chancel Choir featuring his own arrangements of Christmas carols. In December of 2013, Daniel recordrd the Concerto for Folded Space as a member of Steve Wiest’s Electric Eclectic Band with legendary trombonist James Pankow (Chicago) and saxophonist Bob Mintzer (Yellowjackets). 

Greatly inspired by his dear friend Pedro Eustache, Daniel is currently furthering his education at the University of North Texas as a candidate for the Doctor of Music Arts degree. 


Hannah Payne, piano

Hannah Payne is a 2013 graduate of Southern Methodist University where she earned her M.M. in Piano Performance and Pedagogy. From 2009-2013 she taught in SMU's Piano Preparatory Department where she received one-on-one and group training with the leading piano pedagogues in the country. Hannah studied piano performance with acclaimed pianist and teacher Alfred Mouledous. She teaches out of her own piano studio, is a staff accompanist at SMU, and accompanies at Lake Highlands United Methodist Church.


Susan Poelchau, piano

Educated in Texas, pianist Susan Poelchau has performed extensively as an accompanist and continuo player in Dallas and Germany. Currently the Chair of the Sunday Concert Series, she also is active as a singer, handbell director and performer on several Renaissance music instruments. 


Debbie Ragsdale, flute

Debbie Ragsdale is principal flute in the East Texas Symphony Orchestra and a free lancer in the DFW area where she performs with several chamber music groups and teaches privately. After studying with her mother, Myrna Brown, she received her degrees in flute performance from UNT and SMU where she studied with Dr. George Morey and Jean Larsen Garver. 


Mary Alice Rich, violin

Violinist/composer Mary Alice Rich has been a member of Musical Arts Club for several years. Most of the musicians who will join her for this collaborative Library Recital are also members of Musical Arts: Susan Poelchau, Gretchen Nichols, Jane Aten, Emily Hartnett, Laurie Shulman, Debbie Ragsdale, Laura Logan Brandenburg, Sonja Ryberg, and Dante Davis.

The program will feature works by Ms. Rich, including selections from her opera Wading Home based on the novel by Rosalyn Story. The opera was awarded an MPower Grant from the Sphinx Competition and will be presented in concert form on April 2, 2015 at the Dallas City Performance Hall. A graduate of University of Illinois and three-time winner of the Texas Orchestra Directors Association Composition Contest, Ms. Rich's music is available through Neil A. Kjos Music Company, Wingert-Jones Publications, RBC, Tempo Press, Latham Music, Alry Publications, and SmartMusic.


Nicholas Rothouse, World Percussion

Nicholas Rothouse was born and raised in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and now lives in Denton, TX where he studies music at The University of North Texas. While at UNT, he has performed in various regards with premiere ensembles including the North Texas Symphonic Band, UNT Percussion Ensemble, 2:00 Steel Band, Afro-Cuban Ensemble, Brazilian Ensemble, the award-winning Green Brigade Marching Band, and the UNT Latin Jazz. He has studied privately with Christopher Deane, Mark Ford, Dave Hall, Jose Aponte, among others. As an educator, he is currently the front ensemble director at Hebron High School in Carrollton, TX and maintains an active private teaching studio in the LISD area. 


Sonja Ryberg, viola

Sonja received her Bachelor of Music Ed. from Wichita State U, summa cum laude. After ten years of practicing law, she returned to her first love, playing viola. Since that time, she has played with most DFW area orchestras, including the Dallas Opera. Currently, she is principal viola of the Wichita Falls Symphony, a tenured member of the East Texas Symphony and also performs with the Lewisville Symphony. In addition to her own studio, Sonja teaches at the Dallas Suzuki Academy, has registered Suzuki teacher training, and is the viola/violin 3 coach for the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestras3 string orchestras.


Laurie Shulman, piano

Laurie Shulman is well known to North Texas audiences as the long time annotator of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. A cheerleader for the arts and humanities, she comes from a family of professional musicians. Dr. Shulman studied European History as an undergraduate, subsequently earning an M.A. and Ph.D. from Cornell University in historical musicology. 

Her gift is weaving together the strands of history, music, and culture that make our world fascinating. Her animated delivery, entertaining explanations, and enthusiasm have made her a popular and frequent public speaker.

For 26 years, Laurie has furnished program notes for orchestras, chamber music series, and summer festivals throughout the United States. She works extensively with living composers. Her articles have appeared in Symphony, Chamber Music Magazine, Clavier Companion, Journal of the American Viola Society, Playbill, and several newspapers. She is a contributor to the 1980 and 2001 editions of The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, The New Grove Dictionary of Opera (1992) and the forthcoming second edition of The New Grove Dictionary of American Music (2014). Dr. Shulman is the author of The Meyerson Symphony Center (2000), a lively chronicle about Dallas’ celebrated concert hall in its socio-political context. 

She is a fitness fanatic, which allows her to indulge her passions for cooking, wine, and travel. For further information please visit


Sopon “Jokobo” Suwannakit, Jazz Piano

A current student from the University of North Texas, Sopon “Jokobo” Suwannakit is pursuing Master of Music in Jazz Studies at the College of Music with merit-based jazz scholarship. He studies jazz piano with Prof. Stefan Karlsson and classical piano with Assoc. Prof. Gustavo Romero. Sopon received his Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies with secondary emphasis in Classical Performance and Composition (1st class honors) from the Conservatory of Music, Rangsit University from Thailand, in 2013. He primarily studied jazz piano with Asst. Prof. Dr. Denny Euprasert; classical piano with Aree Kunapongkul; and music composition with Boonrut Sirirattanapan. Sopon performed Mendelssohn Piano Concerto No.1 and Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No.2, as a soloist, with Rangsit University Symphony Orchestra in 2010 and 2012 respectively and performed under the baton of Maria Schneider with Rangsit University Jazz Orchestra in September 2010. In early 2012, he performed the world’s premier performance of Gandis (a Thai composer) Piano Concerto with Royal Thai Navy Orchestra. 

For years, Sopon participated in many music festivals. His classical contemporary work Conjugation for viola and piano was performed in Thailand International Composition Festival 2012 and his large jazz ensemble piece Schrödinger was performed in Shanghai Jazz Education Festival 2012, Thailand International Jazz Conference 2013 and RSU Jazz Orchestra Monday Night Live 2013. His arrangements for double quartet, the combination between jazz quartet and string quartet, were performed in Thailand International Jazz Conference 2012. His combo had opportunities to perform in various international jazz festivals, e.g., the 5th JEN Conference (USA) and the Celebration of Jazz 2013 (Malaysia); and also local jazz festivals, e.g., Hua Hin Jazz Festival, Thailand International Jazz Conference, Bangkok City of Jazz, Sawasdee Jazz Festival. 


Violin Students of Jan Sloman: Lizzie Boyson, Clara Kim, Karah Cruse and Megan Lin

Jan Mark Sloman served as associate concertmaster of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra since 1977 and is now retired. A former University Scholar and Naumburg Grant recipient at Princeton University, Mr. Sloman was accepted without audition at the Curtis Institute of Music. He performed as concertmaster of the Orchestra del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino in Florence, Italy, with conductors such as Carlos Kleiber, Zubin Mehta and Carlo Maria Giullini, and has performed as guest concertmaster of the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande in Geneva, orchestras in Lugano and Melbourne, and the Pittsburgh Symphony at the invitation of Lorin Maazel. A noted teacher, Sloman was named Texas Music Teacher Association's Music Teacher of the Year in 2004. The competitive success of his students has brought him not only national recognition but also recent invitations to teach in Europe and China. 

He will present some of his outstanding students in a program of Fiocco, Bach, Haydn and Lalo.


Hye-Young Song, piano

Pianist Hye-Young Song, First Prize winner of The Janice K. Hodges Piano Competition, is an accomplished pianist who has appeared throughout the United States and Korea. After she got her Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Ewha Woman’s University with highest honors in performance, Ms. Song moved to the United States to further her piano studies. She received an Artist Diploma in Piano Performance from Texas Christian University, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin where she served as a Teaching Assistant.

Dr. Song received the top prizes in competitions including the Janice K. Hodges Contemporary Piano Competition, the Sydney Wright Accompanying Competition, International Chopin Piano Competition in Corpus Christi and Ewha University Concerto Competition. As a soloist and chamber musician, she has studied or been coached with renowned artists and pedagogues, including Gregory Allen, Elliot Antokoletz, Jose Mendez, Sophia Gilmson, Harold Martina, Tamas Ungar, Mijae Youn, Anne Schein, Aldo Parisot, Miyoko Lotto, Philippe Bianconi, Benedetto Lupo, Krassimira Jordan, Jose Fegahli, Robert Blocker and Richard Cass.

Dr. Song is also a deeply dedicated teacher. She previously served as a Teaching Assistant at the University of Texas at Austin as well as piano faculty at the Central Texas College, University of Texas Piano Project, and the Orpheus Academy of Music. In 2005, Ms. Song received the Best Teaching Assistant Award at University of Texas for superior teaching as recognized by both students and professors. Her various musical interests include conducting, church music, ballet music, twentieth century music, women composers in music as well as solo and chamber music. She is an active member of Music Teachers National Association, Texas Music Teachers Association and Dallas Music Teachers Association.

Dr. Song resides in Frisco Texas, with her husband. Currently, she is on faculty at North Central Texas College and Weatherford College.


Leslie Spotz, piano

Leslie Spotz, Associate Professor of Piano at Tarleton State University, enjoys an international performing career that spans four continents and has included solo performances in Moscow at Tchaikovsky Hall of Moscow University, South Bank Center of London, Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., the famed Academy of Music in Philadelphia, her highly acclaimed tours of Germany, concerts in Italy at the Lorenzo de’Medici Institute, solo recitals in Taiwan and Brazil, and her performance at the inaugural opening of Philadelphia’s magnificent performance venue, the Kimmel Center. She returned to Italy in June 2013 for performances at the Conservatorio di Milano and the Ambrosianeum Foundation. Also in June 2013 she performed in Buenes Aires, Argentina with soprano Marika Kyriakos and returned to London in May 2011. February 2010 included an all-Chopin Bicentennial recital in New York City at the Tenri Cultural Institute. December 2010 she returned to Germany in a solo recital at the Heilig–Kreuz–Kirche in Berlin. Hailed by the prestigious Süddeutsche Zeitung of Munich, Spotz’ Beethoven was described thus: “Stripped of veneer, revealing all the edges and corners, Spotz earnestly confronted Beethoven’s tempi and dynamic indications, leaving mediocrity and shallow beauty behind and bringing out truth. In all, a concert of the highest critical standard, further proof of the high carat quality of this series.” Spotz has performed extensively throughout the U.S. from coast to coast. Concert highlights include her 2007 performance at Tarleton as soloist with the Fort Worth Symphony, performances of twenty Beethoven Sonatas at Rutgers University and her recitals for the Bach Festival of Philadelphia.

Receiving a full scholarship to the Curtis Institute of Music, Spotz studied for five years with the legendary, Mieczyslaw Horszowski. She completed her doctorate at Rutgers University in 2002. Her appearances as soloist include the Mozart Society of Philadelphia, South Jersey Symphony, Curtis Symphony, Kinhaven Symphony in Vermont, the Piedmont Chamber Orchestra in North Carolina, the Old York Road Symphony in Abington, PA, and the Clear Lake Symphony in Texas. March 2013 she was soloist with the University of Texas – San Antonio Symphony.

Spotz has become an advocate for women musicians through her performances, collaborating with flutist Adeline Tomasone on the critically acclaimed CD Fantasias, and women composers are featured on her solo CD, issued by Leonore Records in 1999. She has collaborated with violinists: Maria Bachmann, Joseph Genualdi, and Mark Steinberg; flutist Laurel Zucker; David Wetherill, former co-principal horn of the Philadelphia Orchestra; Frank Kaderabek, former principal trumpet of the Philadelphia Orchestra and Joseph Depasquale, former principal viola of the Philadelphia Orchestra. Among the notable international singers for whom Spotz has accompanied are sopranos Amanda Squitieri, Julianne Baird, Gwendolyn Bradley, Judith Lovat and Donna Connolly, and tenors Martin Dillon and Robert Guarino. She regularly performs as a member of the Abilene Chamber Players. According to the The Philadelphia Inquirer, "Miss Spotz commands the resonant sound and the elegant gesture… playing of great color, boldness, and suavity… most engaging…".


Texas A&M University-Commerce Chamber Singers

The Chamber Singers specialize in chamber vocal music from all periods of music history. The 11-voice ensemble is noted for its excellence in the choral art. The Chamber Singers perform a Fall and Spring Concert and at community and University events. Singers are Jasmine Johnson, Jodi Mitchell, Michaella Prussack, Leisa Baker, Hannah Brownring, Mille Saenz, Taylor Brimager, Micah Krajca, Jon Erik Garza, James Melton and Ryan Scott. They are directed by Dr. Randall Hooper.


Jonathan Tsay, piano

Born and raised in Arlington, Texas, Jonathan started his piano studies with Carolyn Savko at the age of five. Under the tutelage of Carol Leone, Jonathan earned a Bachelors of Music with Honors at the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University (SMU). While at SMU, he was the recipient of the van Katwijk Award, the Roy and Sue Johnson Award, and the Mu Phi Epsilon Award. Jonathan entered l’Université de Montréal in 2005 as a Masters of Music student of Marc Durand, and through an accelerated program received his doctorate in 2009.

Jonathan has participated in the TCU/Cliburn Piano Institute in Fort Worth, Le Centre d’arts Orford in Quebec, and the Banff International Keyboard Festival. Through these institutes Jonathan has received instruction from some of the premier musicians from around the world, including Joaquín Achúcarro, Boris Berman, Jerome Lowenthal, John Perry, Boris Petrushansky, Abbey Simon, Arnold Steinhardt, and Tamas Ungar.

Jonathan has remained active as a chamber musician; of an appearance in a concert with violinist Stirling Trent, Scott Cantrell (The Dallas Morning News) writes: “Their impeccable performance... was the afternoon’s highlight.” Jonathan has collaborated with some of the world's most recognized musicians such as Alessandra Marc, Chee-Yun, Nathan Olson (Co-Concertmaster, Dallas Symphony Orchestra), and Jing Wang (Concertmaster, Hong Kong Philharmonic). He has been a featured soloist with orchestras including the Fort Worth Youth Orchestra, the Houston School for the Performing and Visual Arts Orchestra, and the Meadows Symphony Orchestra.

First prize in the 4th annual Concours de musique de Repentigny (2006), Jonathan made his Canadian solo debut during the following concert season. He was a top prizewinner in the collegiate division of the Janice K. Hodges Contemporary Piano Performance Award, and was also a top prizewinner in both solo and concerto divisions of the Texas Music Teachers Association (TMTA) piano competitions. He is also the winner of the South Central division of the 2004-2005 Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) Young Artists Piano competition and was a national finalist. Recent and upcoming performances with Dallas-based new music ensemble Voices of Change and the Avant Chamber Ballet.

Jonathan’s other musical backgrounds include violin studies with Irene Lau, percussion studies with Joey Carter, composition studies with Simon Sargon and David Karp, and conducting lessons with Jack Delaney and Paul Phillips. Jonathan served as pianist, violinist, violist, and percussionist for the Fort Worth Youth Orchestra, where he also won the Young Artists’ Award.

Jonathan has composed scores to multiple documentaries; most recently he wrote music for Parker Brown’s exploration into college smoking entitled DRAG, which can be found on internet podcasts and public broadcasts throughout the US. Jonathan's recordings can be found in Brahms - A Listener's Guide: Unlocking the Masters Series, published by Amadeus Press and available on A CD featuring the works of Rachmaninoff, Shostakovich, Debussy, Liszt, and Muczynski was released worldwide May 2009.

Jonathan also participated in various extra-curricular activities including football, track-and-field, and Teen Court. He was a three-time winner of the Eagle Award, given out yearly to the top competitor in the Traditional Karate League. In his spare time, Jonathan enjoys playing football, maintaining his website (, and watching cartoons. His long-term goals include purchasing a small island at the US/Canadian border with his close friends and building a summer haven there.

Jonathan currently is the Artistic Director of ensemble75, a chamber music series based out of Dallas, Texas.


Caen Thomason-Redus, flute

Whether it is a recital of virtuoso baroque sonatas, a chamber concert of French impressionism or an entire program of unaccompanied contemporary African American music, Caen Thomason-Redus makes each performance a unique, engaging experience. Holding several principal flute positions, performing for two years in the Detroit Symphony Orchestra as their Minority Fellow, and teaching at universities such as the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and the University of Evansville (IN), he enjoys a diverse career of teaching, performing and recording. Caen has had the privilege of working with some of today’s great composers including Philip Glass, Gunther Schuller, Chinary Ung, Mario Davidovsky, Barbara Kolb, David Maslanka and Robert Beaser, and recently premiered works by Shawn Okpebholo and Carlos Rafael Rivera. He recorded The Flute Collection and the Moyse Collection of Flute Classics, a total of five recordings and anthologies published by G. Schirmer, and later this year will be recording two albums of Latin and contemporary music for flute and guitar. He is professionally active with the National Flute Association, Early Music Now, the Center for Black Music Research, and is a Muramatsu Artist. Caen earned performance degrees from Rice University and the University of Redlands (CA) and did additional studies at the University of Michigan and the Mozarteum Akademie in Salzburg, Austria. His primary instructors were Leone Buyse, Candice Palmberg and Yaada Weber. He is married to hornist Kristi Crago and they enjoy spending lots of time with their three young children.


Christopher Wright, Double Bass

Christopher Wright began playing bass at age 15, and played in both the All Region and All State jazz ensembles in his home state of North Carolina. He later received a bachelor's of music at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is currently working to complete a Masters degree at the University of North Texas in jazz bass performance. He currently performs with the Three O’ Clock Lab Band and several groups based within Denton.  

Contact Information
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