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Meet the Faculty of FAA...

 

Art | Dance | Music | Theatre

Making the arts available to the community...

The Fine Arts Association's faculty is one of the most highly qualified collection of instructors in northeast Ohio. Nearly all of our instructors are degreed in their particular craft, and have pursued specialized study in related areas. In addition to unquestionable educational background, many continue to perform in their art, thus bringing a new dimension of vitality and professionalism to the classroom.

Students of all ages continue to take classes in our expansive facility. From preschoolers through senior citizens, thousands of students have experienced the satisfaction of learning a new craft, or the excitement of performing Chopin on the piano.

Highlights

Looking for music for your special event?  Check out our Artists Directory.


Dance

Crooks, Jessica

Jessica began studying Ballet nineteen years ago, including training with BalletMet.  In addition she has studied Jazz, Tap, and Hip hop at Generations Performing Arts Center near Columbus, where she danced competitively for four years. During her studies at Malone University Jessica founded a student lead dance group which provided college students a chance to experience different styles of dance, learn about technique, and perform at school functions. Since college Jessica has studied Zumba, which she practices actively. She has also choreographed Seymour Performers Workshop's performance of "The Wizard of Oz" and "Music Man" at  Andrews Osborne Academy.

Fields, Kailei

Kalei has studied Ballet, Tap, Modern, Jazz and Hip Hop for more than 17 years. She is currently studying dance at Lake Erie College in combination with a major in Psychology.

Hammett-Parker, Beatrice

Ms. Parker is a dance instructor at Lakeland Community College as well as Cleveland School of the Arts. Her training includes a multitude of dance forms including: jazz, modern, African and other cultures around the world. She is also involved with The Fine Arts Association’s Sarah Weeden Richardson Minority Scholarship Committee.

Sanders, Rebecca

BFA, Dance Performance, The Ohio State University. Trained in a variety of dance forms including jazz, ballet, tap, modern and character. Six years of performing and teaching experience with Inlet Dance Theatre, a modern dance company. Extensive teaching experience with adolescent through adult students. Has choreographed various musical theatre productions.

Smith, Janice

Imperial Society of Teachers for Dance ( London , England ) Fellowship, Enrico Cecchetti Final Diploma. Certification in Applied Anatomy and Physiology for Dance (Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance). Certified Pilates instructor/teacher trainer. Training completion through Yoga Fit. Resist-a-Ball core trainer. Certified personal trainer A.C.E., A.F.A.A.

Ziegler, Hannah

B.F.A. with Concentration in Dance, Lake Erie College; Ten year training in dance, Fine Arts Association. Studied with Helanius Wilkins, Cha-Lee Chan, Habib Iddrisu, and Marlene Leber. Choreographed for Lake Erie College and local community theaters. Ballet, jazz, modern, tap, and creative movement teaching experience.


Music Brass | Guitar | Harp | Music Therapy | Percussion | Piano | Strings | Voice | Woodwinds

Brass

Hughes, Kenneth (tuba/euphonium)

M.M. Northwestern University; B.M. Ohio State University. Retired from Conn-Selmer, Inc. and is a member of the Suburban Symphony Orchestra, Lakeland Civic Band and Heights Chamber Orchestra Seasonal Brass.

McKee, Scott (trumpet)

B.M. in Trumpet Performance from Cleveland State University.  Postgraduate studies at the University of Colorado at Boulder.  Scott has studied with Geoffrey Hardcastle, Charles Couch, Jack Sutte, Dennis Reynolds, Brad Goode, Terry Shawchuck and Art Lande.

Trumpeter Scott McKee has earned acclaim for his performances both in his hometown of Cleveland as well as across all of North America. He has appeared as a trumpeter with Tito Puente Jr., Aretha Franklin, The Temptations, Guy Lombardo’s Royal Canadians, Clark Terry, Bobby Shew, MOJO The Generations Big Band, Sammy DeLeon y su Orquestra, Ernie Krivda and the Fat Tuesday Big Band, No Exit New Music Ensemble, and the Cleveland Jazz Orchestra.

Check out this youtube video, giving you further insight into Scott McKee.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aQ13Fr8KoNg

Rapier, Chris (French horn)

B.M. University of Massachusetts, concentration on French Horn Performance and Instrumental Music Education; participant in Blossom Summer Music School Camp, and Sewanee Summer School. Teaches at Mercyhurst College ( Erie , PA ). Principal horn for Erie Philharmonic & Erie Chamber Orchestra. Performs with Opera Cleveland, West Virginia Symphony and Canton Symphony.


Guitar

Bush, Lee (guitar)

Guitarist, arranger, composer, producer, recording engineer and educator. Education includes degrees from Baldwin-Wallace College, the University of Missouri and private study of music theory and composition with Phil Rizzo. Also studied guitar under Lloyd Casterline, Dick Lurie and George Morel. Co-leads the Nice Jazz Trio. Performed with the Ernie Krivda Fat Tuesday Big Band and Swing City for many years. Member of the Music Department faculty at Cleveland State University.

Gecik, George (guitar, electric bass, banjo)

Master of Music coursework, Youngstown State University; BA in Music, Kent State University; Classic Guitar Studies with Aaron Shearer, Carlos Barbosa-Lima and Sophocles Pappas. Narciso Yepes Master Classes in Paris, France 1975. Mr.Gecik has over forty years of experience as a guitar instructor. He serves as an Adjunct Faculty member at Lakeland Community College in Music Business and as a guitar Instructor. Adjunct Faculty at Youngstown StateUniversity as a classic guitar instructor for 15 years. He was the Founder/Owner/President/CEO of Special Productions, Inc. in Mentor, OH. for 28 years. Mr. Gecik taught guitar, bass and banjo at the School of Fine Arts from 1973 to 1995.

Student ages and ability levels:
Classic Guitar, Jazz, Folk styles with emphasis on musicianship and solid fundamentals. Beginners thru advanced. Ages 7 and up.
Electric Bass (beginners through intermediate) and 5-String Banjo (beginners).

Teaching Methods:
Combine reading music, theory, ear training etc. with learning the entire fingerboard through unique "Fingberboard Navigation" system developed with Lee Bush over past 30 years.
Teach Aaron Shearer's system of proper hand alignment and movement.

Guerrieri, Alfredo (bass guitar, upright string bass, guitar)

M.M. Cleveland State University, B.M. Berklee College of Music (Boston), Bass Principle, Magna Cum Laude. A.A. Musician's Institute (Los Angeles), Professional Performance. A.A. Lakeland Community College.

Upright and Electric Bassist and Guitarist who has toured all over the United States, and parts of Australia and Hong Kong. Has performed and/or recorded with an array of artists such as the Keith McKelley Project, Audible Distraction, The Goonz, We The People, Joe McBride, Richie Reece, The Speedbumps, Allison Piccioni, Catwalk Blue, Sophie Stern, and Chad Szeliga (Breaking Benjamin). Proud Endorsee of S.I.T. Strings and Campbell American Guitars.

Student ages and ability levels:   Electric Bass: all levels, styles, and ages.   Upright String Bass: Age: preferably Junior High and up.  Styles: Jazz, Classical, Bluegrass

Guitar: Preferably age 8 and up.  Styles: Rock, Folk, Blues

Piano: Preferably age 10 and up.  Styles: Rock, Folk, Blues

Teaching Methods:   All of my lessons are based around using songs as a teaching mechanism, all the while incorporating reading, theory, ear training, scales, technique, and GROOVE!

 


Music Therapy

Mann, Ellen, MT-BC (music therapy, voice, piano, guitar)

B.M. in Music Therapy, Marywood University, Scranton, PA., Board Certified Music Therapist (2004). Has practiced as a music therapist since 2004 and joined the Fine Arts music therapy staff in 2007. Serves clients on-site at The Fine Arts Association and through the Fine Arts Off-Site Education program. Experience working with a variety of populations including young children, teens, and adults with special needs in addition to hospice patients and families. Ellen is currently the research clinician for Lake Health's music therapy and diabetes research study. Member of the American Music Therapy Association.

Musat, Danielle E., MT-BC (music therapy)

B.M in Music Therapy, minor in Psychology, Baldwin-Wallace College in 2000.  She spent the first 3 years of her career working as a Music Therapist in a residential treatment facility for children and teens with behavioral health problems.  Danielle then became the full-time Music Therapist at Lorain County Board of DD, where she spent 8 years working with children from 18 months old through adults into their 80's.  She led a choir for 18 adults with developmental disabilities and a children's bell choir.  She has a studio out of Royalton Music Center, where she sees children and adults with developmental/physical disabilities.  Danielle also works with the iCan program in Independence, facilitating drum circles, music and movement activities, increasing self-esteem for individuals with all developmental disabilities and is a Musical Kaleidoscope instructor at Baldwin Wallace University where she teaches communication, socialization, direction following to children with developmental disabilities and their caregivers, through musical experiences.  Danielle serves varying populations, including: cerebral palsy, quadriplegia, autism, speech delay, fine/gross motor delay, non-verbal individuals, individuals with augmentative communication devices, as well as many more.  She is very excited to join the Music Therapy team here at The Fine Arts Association.

Raddell, Ann Marie, MT-BC, NICU MT (music therapy)

B.A., Music Therapy, University of Dayton. Board Certified Music Therapist. Certified Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Music Therapist. Former music therapist in the Positive Education Program at Phoenix Place and Phoenix Point and at Twin Valley Behavioral Healthcare. Member of the American Music Therapy Association.


Percussion

Black, Dave (percussion)

Studies in Music Education, Ohio University; Played w/the Navy Bands (1989-1995); freelances as a professional musician.

Chastain, Neil (percussion)

Neil completed studies in Percussion Performance and Jazz at Interlochen Arts Academy, The University of Michigan and Cleveland Institute of Music. He is a professional percussionist with Kokolo Afrobeat NYC, Roberto Ocasio’s Latin Jazz Project and former music director/composer and performer of SAFMOD Performance Ensemble. He is a music educator and teaching artist, a five time international touring drummer with Kokolo Afrobeat (US, Europe, Canada) and a recipient of the Creative Workforce Fellowship granted through Cuyahoga Arts & Culture.

Kochan, Greg (percussion)

Masters degree in Education., Cleveland State University; B.M.E., Bowling Green University.  Mr. Kochan has thirty-seven years of teaching experience, most recently at Perry High School for twent-eight years.  He is also a professional musician who performs with area ensembles.  Prefers starting students at 10 years of age and older although he will consider younger students if qualified.  Please call FAA's Customer Service staff at (440) 951-7500 to set up an interview with Mr. Kochan.


Piano

Binda, Francesco (piano)

Master of Music in piano performance at the University of Nebraska. Studied with Dr. Mark Clinton.  Mr. Binda also holds a diploma in piano performance at the Cleveland Institute of Music under the guide of Ms. Emanuela Friscioni. Prior to coming to the United States in 2006, Mr. Binda studied and graduated from the Conservatorio A. Boito of Parma, Italy. His teachers included Maestro Marco Giovanetti and Maestro Konstantin Bogino.

In 1997 Mr. Binda started his official activity as a performer. He played as a solo pianist for Italian institutions and associations. During these years, he participated in national and international competitions and Master Classes conducted by Maestro Paolo Bordoni and Aldo Ciccolini.

As a collaborative pianist, Mr. Binda was involved in numerous activities and performances during his studies in the USA. He often played with ensembles, university choruses and orchestras. At the present, he performs regularly with vocalists and instrumentalists. Furthermore, Mr. Binda works extensively as part of the BindaFeola Duo, formed with his wife Lauren Feola, who is a soprano.

Brandelis, Bella (piano/violin)

M.A. Cleveland State University , B. A. Moscow Conservatory. Member of Suburban Symphony Orchestra (violin). Suzuki teacher training in violin and piano. Member of National Guild of Piano Teachers and the Ohio Music Teachers Association.

Guerrieri, Alfredo (piano, upright string bass, bass guitar, guitar)

M.M. Cleveland State University, B.M. Berklee College of Music (Boston), Bass Principle, Magna Cum Laude. A.A. Musician's Institute (Los Angeles), Professional Performance. A.A. Lakeland Community College.

Upright and Electric Bassist and Guitarist who has toured all over the United States, and parts of Australia and Hong Kong. Has performed and/or recorded with an array of artists such as the Keith McKelley Project, Audible Distraction, The Goonz, We The People, Joe McBride, Richie Reece, The Speedbumps, Allison Piccioni, Catwalk Blue, Sophie Stern, and Chad Szeliga (Breaking Benjamin). Proud Endorsee of S.I.T. Strings and Campbell American Guitars.

Student ages and ability levels: Piano: Preferably age 10 and up.  Styles: Rock, Folk, Blues

Teaching Methods:   All of my lessons are based around using songs as a teaching mechanism, all the while incorporating reading, theory, ear training, scales, technique, and GROOVE!

Kearns, Sanni (piano)

M.A. in Music History and Literature, Kent State University, B.M.E. with emphasis in piano performance, Baldwin-Wallace College; Graduate Studies in Dalcroze Eurhythmics, Carnegie-Mellon and Lowell Universities. Suzuki teacher training, professional organist and accompanist. Member SAA, SANO

Klonowski, Barbara (piano)

Graduate Studies, Cleveland Institute of Music; Peabody Conservatory of Music. Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance; four year talent scholarship. Chamber music, Bowdoin College. CIM Preparatory School. Piano studies with David Bean, Elizabeth Pastor, and Vitya Vronsky. Piano pedagogy with Tinka Knopf. National Certification with Music Teachers National Association. Performing member of the Cecilian and Fortnightly Musical Clubs. Professional affiliation with Western Reserve Piano Teachers and the National Guild of Piano Teachers. Delta Omicron national honor society. Frequent adjudicator of piano events. Collaborative performances throughout NE Ohio, the Midwest, and on both coasts of the USA. Recorded a record/CD with mezzo-soprano Aldona Stempuzis-Svedas. Member of the Encore Chamber Trio. Students have garnered honors at the national, regional, state and local levels. Has served in numerous capacities at The Fine Arts Association, including Recital Coordinator, and Piano Department Chair. A second generation artist/teacher.

LaBonne, Feroza (Suzuki & traditional piano)

Piano Teaching Diplomas from both the Royal Schools of Music and the Trinity College of Music, London, UK. Her Masters Degree in Music Education from Case Western Reserve University-Cleveland Institute of Music Joint Program.  She was awarded the Permanent Professional Certificate from the Music Teachers National Association.  Forty years of successful teaching have proven that an individualized approach to technic, interpretation and appropriate repertoire, includ8ing performance and audition opportunities, ensures the success of every student.

Ms. LaBonne was formerly an adjunct piano faculty member in upstate New York's Union College and concurrently the music critic for the TIMES UNION daily newspaper of Albany, New York.  Ms. LaBonne is the National Winner (1992) of a grant given by the Music Teachers National Association to one Nationally Certified Piano Teacher chosen from across the fifty states.  She is also the recipient of a fully funded National Fellowship from the Music Critics Association.  

She is a third generation pianist, her mother being India's leading piano teacher.  International Welsh composer Hilary Tann dedicated her two-piano work, "Waters Edge" jointly to Feroza Dubash LaBonne and her mother Farida Dubash.  It was published by Oxford University Press and premiered by Feroza's students in New York.  Feroza and her prize-winning piano students have appeared over WAMC Northeast Public Radio, an affiliate of NPR.  Her students have placed at the state, regional and national levels in solo and concerto events.  Recently her former student from Juilliard was a semi-finalist at the Cleveland International Piano Competition.  Feroza has been a performing member of various chamber music groups including the Trio Appassionata and the Duo Fantastique and a concerto soloist with the Bombay Philharmonic and the Glens Falls Symphony Orchestra, NY.

Messina, Maryann (piano)

B. Mus. Ed. Cleveland State University. Professional study with area jazz performers. Graduate classes taken in Piano Pedagogy. Professional freelance keyboard/pianist.  Ms. Messina's teaching methods are personalized to a student's needs.

Minnis, Timothy (piano)

D.M.A., Ohio State University, M.M., Manhattan School of Music. Has taught at Kenyon College, Ohio State, the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, the Metropolitan Music School of New York City, where he was also director, and at the Beck Center for the Arts. A frequent recitalist and chamber musician in New York and the Midwest, he is the author of a book on the piano music of Albert Roussel.

Syroney, Marge (Suzuki and traditional piano)

B.M. The Cleveland Institute of Music; B.S. in Education, University of Akron ; M.M. in Music Ed., University of Akron. Private study with Arthur Loesser and William Kurzban and Marie Martin. Sanctioned Suzuki instructor. Elementary Music Teacher in area Catholic Schools. Local church musician-organist and pianist. Member of MENC/OMEA

Witczak, Martin (piano)

M.A. in Music Education from Case Western Reserve University.  B.S. in Music Education through dual program at Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Institute of Music.  Mr. Witczak has taught at North Olmsted City Schools and Kirtland City Schools as a band director and elementary music teacher.

Martin has performed with many local jazz groups, including the Dan Zola Orchestra, the PrimeTime Big Band, the Swingtime Big Band, and the MOJO Jazz Orchestra.  He has been a guest soloist with the University Circle Wind Ensemble and the John Carroll University jazz ensemble.  In addition, he is a member of the U.S. Air Force band program as a pianist, tubist, and euphonium player, most notably as a member of the 555th Air Force Band from Toledo, OH.  He has performed as a pianist and brass musician on tours with the U.S. Air Force Band of Flight, the U.S Air Force Academy Band, and the Air National Guard Band of the Northeast.

Martin also freelances as an accompanist, cocktail pianist, brass player and coach, and clinician both locally and remotely.


Strings

Brandelis, Bella (piano/violin)

M.A. Cleveland State University , B. A. Moscow Conservatory. Member of Suburban Symphony Orchestra (violin). Suzuki teacher training in violin and piano. Member of National Guild of Piano Teachers and the Ohio Music Teachers Association.

Cirvencic, Ann (Suzuki & traditional violin/viola)

M.M. Viola Performance, Cleveland Institute of Music; B.M. Violin Performance, Western Michigan University; Graduate level Suzuki training at Indiana University with Mimi Zweig. Mrs. Cirvencic performs with many ensembles throughout Northeast Ohio, and loves working with students of all levels. She has previously served as founder and director of the Suzuki program at Cleveland Music School Settlement. Accepts students ages four and up.

Crowe, Elizabeth (Suzuki & traditional cello)

B.A. the American University in Paris. Freelance cellist in the Cleveland area. Ms. Crowe studied cello in Paris, France, with Dmitry Markevitch, at the Russian Music Conservatory. Member of several musical groups, including the Ancestors, a Ukranian Folk band, the Afro-Caribbean ensemble of TRI-C and in several classical ensembles. Regular performer at the Cleveland Zoo for Zoo Lights, Boo at the Zoo, and other holiday events.

Edwards, Jonathan (Skip) (cello)

Skip also teaches at the Rainey Institute (an arts education organization) and attended CIM and the Berkeley College of Music. In addition to cello, Skip teaches upright bass and electric bass.

Godfrey, Lauren (Suzuki and traditional violin)

B.M.E. Heidelberg College , Suzuki teacher training, Ithaca College. Further studies with Alvaro deGranda. Member of S.S.A. Lakeland Civic Orchestra member.

Guerrieri, Alfredo (upright string bass, bass guitar, guitar, piano)

M.M. Cleveland State University, B.M. Berklee College of Music (Boston), Bass Principle, Magna Cum Laude. A.A. Musician's Institute (Los Angeles), Professional Performance. A.A. Lakeland Community College.

Upright and Electric Bassist and Guitarist who has toured all over the United States, and parts of Australia and Hong Kong. Has performed and/or recorded with an array of artists such as the Keith McKelley Project, Audible Distraction, The Goonz, We The People, Joe McBride, Richie Reece, The Speedbumps, Allison Piccioni, Catwalk Blue, Sophie Stern, and Chad Szeliga (Breaking Benjamin). Proud Endorsee of S.I.T. Strings and Campbell American Guitars.

Student ages and ability levels: Upright String Bass: Age: preferably Junior High and up.  Styles: Jazz, Classical, Bluegrass  Electric Bass: all levels, styles, and ages.

Guitar: Preferably age 8 and up.  Styles: Rock, Folk, Blues

Piano: Preferably age 10 and up.  Styles: Rock, Folk, Blues

Teaching Methods:   All of my lessons are based around using songs as a teaching mechanism, all the while incorporating reading, theory, ear training, scales, technique, and GROOVE!

Linsenmeier, Dr. Carol (Suzuki & traditional violin/viola/fiddle)

Ph.D. in Special Education Research, Kent State University; M. Mus. Ed. University of Georgia; B. Mus. Ed., College of Wooster; Suzuki Teacher Training, Ithaca College Suzuki Institute. Over thirty years of teaching and performance experience.  Performs locally as a soloist and with ensembles.  Listed in Who's Who in America.  Teaches ages four through adult.


Voice

Feola, Lauren (voice)

Lauren obtained her Master of Music in Vocal Performance at the University of Akron and studied with Dr. Laurie Lashbrook. During her studies at Akron, she performed in Hansel and Gretel (Sandman), L’elisir d’amore (Giannetta), and La canterina (Gasparina). Prior to returning to school for her Masters, Ms. Feola studied with Ms. Sara Haus. For numerous years, she performed with the Cleveland Orchestra Chorus under the direction of Robert Porco and participated in several of Mr. Porco’s Master classes.

In the summer of 2009, Ms. Feola received a scholarship to study in Oderzo, Italy to participate in an EPCASO Opera Workshop for select vocalists. Under the direction of Claudia Pinza, she was chosen to perform in various cities as soloist and at an Italian military base. Her coaches included Enza Ferrari, Giovanni Cappelletti, Maurizio Arena, Vivica Genaux, and Maria Chiara. Ms. Feola’s interest in Italian music began in 2003 and 2004 when she travelled to Florence and studied with Franco Pagliazzi and Victor Micaleff.

In recent years, Ms. Feola performed for the Cleveland Composers Guild and the Cleveland Classical Guitar Society with guitarist Stephen Aron. She also performs regularly with her husband and pianist, Francesco Binda, most recently at the Judson Manor in Cleveland.

Godfrey, Bob (vocal music)

Bob Godfrey has appeared in operas and musicals in northeastern Ohio, including a number of professional roles in Cleveland Opera productions at the State Theatre in Playhouse Square. Mr. Godfrey has been a featured baritone soloist for productions of Handel's Messiah at Lake Erie College, in Painesville and Ashtabula, and at Kent State University and Heidelberg College, his alma maters. In addition, he has recorded two Gilbert and Sullivan operettas on compact disc. For the past 3 years, Mr. Godfrey has been heard on radio performances of “The Mighty Wurlitzer Radio Hour,” which aired on WCLV (and WCLV.com) in the Cleveland area and now can been seen on youtube. In the summer of 2013, he originated the role of Alan Jablonski in the world premiere musical Tuning In at E.J. Thomas Hall in Akron, Ohio. His favorite musical theater roles include the title role in Sondheim's Sweeney Todd, Nathan Detroit (Guys and Dolls), Reverend Shaw Moore (Footloose), Harry/Baptista (Kiss Me Kate), Harold Hill (The Music Man), Cervantes/Don Quixote (Man of La Mancha), Singer 1 (Forbidden Broadway), Archibald Craven ( Secret Garden), and his favorite, Tevye (Fiddler on the Roof). He retired 5 years ago from teaching public school vocal music, but now enjoys teaching private voice lessons in Lake County.) , and his absolute favorite, Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof ( SHT).

Koh, Evie (voice)

Evie Koh graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Music- Voice, minor in German Studies from Ohio Wesleyan University. While attending OWU she performed with the Ohio Wesleyan University Choral Art Society and Women's Chorus, and performed several roles with the Opera Theater Workshop including Suor Genovieffe in Puccini's Suor Angelica and Flora in Benjamin Britten's The Turn of the Screw. While at Ohio Wesleyan, Ms. Koh studied privately with Mrs. Marilyn Nims, and choral technique and conducting with Mr. Jason Hiester. She has also performed with the Blossom Festival Chorus, and the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus. She has a passion for the art song, specifically Lieder, and is IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) trained. Ms. Koh is also an actress having performed locally at The Fine Arts Association, Rabbit Run, Chagrin Valley Little Theater, and Lake Performing Arts Center.

Mattson, Doreen (vocal & general music)

Graduate Study College of Mt. St. Joseph , B.M.E. (Music Education) Wittenberg University , Level I Orff-Schulwerk Certification. Studied at Lakeland Community College and Cleveland Institute of Music with Irving Bushman. Professional soloist. Perfomed with Lakeland Civic Chorus for 17 years. Directs the Chancel Choir at Advent Lutheran Church, in Mentor.

Skok, Heidi (voice)

Heidi Skok, Mezzo-soprano, studied voice at The Fine Arts Association.  She graduated from Carnegie Mellon University in 1990 with a BFA in Voice followed by one year of tutelage under Tito Capobianco at the Pittsburgh Opera Center.  She then was invited to join the Metropolitan Opera’s Young Artist Development Program in 1991 by Maestro James Levine.  She continued to perform as an artist at the MET until 2003, when she transitioned to a lyric mezzo repertoire.  She continues to study under Patricia McCaffrey, Mezzo-soprano in NYC.

In 2009, Heidi founded an organization called RESONANZ, a three-week, summer intensive Vocal festival that operated out of the College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY.  RESONANZ now funtions as a foundation that supports financially all voice types to help further singing careers.  Please view www.resonanzfoundation.org

Heidi uses the Lilli Lehmann technique, which is bel canto. She has extensive experience teaching voice.  At the college level, she has taught classes for Bachelor of Music degree, Bachelor of Music Education degree, and Bachelor of Arts degree in Music.  She also has experience teaching theatre speaking voices and musical theatre singers.  She has taught at The New School University (formerly known as The New School for Social Research), Bennington College, the New England Conservatory in Boston, MA, the University of Kentucky, and the College of Saint Rose.  She has helped many students and faculty:  instructing a MET Finals Grand Winner, solving technical issues of vocal students, producing top-tiered undergraduate and graduate recitals. 

At her personal studio, Skok Studio, she has worked with singers who have sung at the Metropolitan Opera, English National Opera, Glyndebourne, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Leipzig Oper, New York City Opera, Washington National Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Chautauqua Opera, Steans Institute at the Ravinia Festival, San Diego Opera and the Santa Fe Opera and also had singers on Broadway in Damn Yankees and Hairspray.

She has produced her own album which sells on the Newport Classic label.

Ms. Skok continues to perform throughout the country while teaching voice here at The Fine Arts Association two days a week each month.

For more information on Heidi Skok, please view www.heidiskok.com.

Speirs, Phyllis (vocal teacher and coach)

Vocal teacher and coach who majored in Vocal Performance at Kent State University with continued studies at Cleveland Institute of Music and Cleveland State University. Phyllis is a soloist of opera, oratorios and recitals of German lieder. Debuted with Blossom Orchestra as "Kate" in Madame Butterfly. Sang with Cleveland Pops Orchestra under Louis Lane, Cleveland Orchestra Chorus, Cleveland Opera, Suburban Symphony and Robert Page Singers among others. Featured soloist in recording "It Must Be Heard." Has extensive experience in church music as soloist and choral director and recorded CD's of contemporary cantatas.  Organized and directs The Fine Arts Association Community Choir, which performs classical music annually in the spring.  She welcomes high school and adult singers.

Teaching Technique:
Phyllis teaches a technique which, regardless of style (Classical, Music Theater, Jazz, etc.), attributes to great flexibility and expression, tonal freedom, intense and sonorous tone, and good diction skill. It all depends on a steady and firm breath pressure (breath-control) more technically referred to as Diaphramatic-Costal Breathing. She will fully demonstrate this technique so you can utilize it for more satisfying singing regardless of style.

Teaching Philosophy:
Her philosophy is to teach one "how to sing" which requires more than learning notes and words. She recommends students be no younger than age 13 or 14 because of body development and mental discipline required. She will audition a student if younger. For singers who wish to refine and polish their skills, vocal coaching is available to further develop the essential aspects of professional performance Style, Musicality, Phrasing, Color, Diction and Stage Presence.

Ms. Speirs currently teaches at The Fine Arts Association and Cleveland Institute of Music.


Woodwinds

Baker, Charles (clarinet)

M.A. Case Western Reserve University ; B.M. Oberlin College Conservatory. Studied with Robert Marcellus, Alfred Zetzer, George Waln, Alois Heine and Thomas Thompson. Also studied at the Mozarteum Akademie in Salzburg, Austria. Performs in Lakeland Civic Orchestra (first clarinet) and taught in Wickliffe Public Schools. Freelance musician in orchestras and bands. Listed in "Who's Who in America."  He is also a member of The Fine Arts Woodwind Quintet.

Elias, Judith (flute)

B.M.E. Youngstown State University. Graduate study Kent State University. Studied extensively with Maurice Sharp and Raymond DeMattia. Ms. Elias is an adjunct faculty member with Lake Erie College and is principal flutist with Lakeland Civic Orchestra and a member of The Fine Arts Woodwind Quintet, as well as a frequent performer in area chamber music recitals and churches. She is listed in "Who's Who in America 's Teachers and Who's Who in America." Ms. Elias teaches students of ages 7 to adult, beginning to advanced, post graduate levels. Her philosophy is to encourage the student to achieve their optimal potential through correct practice techniques while still enjoying music. Lessons may include preparation for adjudicated events, (contest,) and auditions for placement or college.

Michaels, Ed (saxophone)

As a tenor saxophonist, Ed Michaels regularly performs with the top musicians of Northeast Ohio, among them some of his former students. He has recorded a CD, entitled Going Beyond on the Nice Jazz Label. Ed has performed with Phil Woods; Donald Byrd; Pacquito D’Rivera; Bobby Sanabria; and Clarence Cleamons. His quartet has played extended engagements at the Century Room of Cleveland’s prestigious Ritz-Carlton Hotel, the Grille Room of downtown Cleveland’s Embassy Suites Hotel, Cleveland’s Fat Fish Blue, Club Isabella, The Cleveland Museum of Art Summer Concert Series, and Cleveland State University Sundown Jazz Concerts.

Currently, Ed is the director of Jazz Impact, an honors jazz ensemble of area high school musicians sponsored by Lakeland Community College. The band has earned recognition through yearly outstanding performances at the Lakeland Jazz Festival, the Tri-C Jazz Fest, and the Essentially Ellington Contest sponsored by the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra.

Ed has been the Festival Director and Educational Co-Director of the annual Lakeland Jazz Festival (1999-2008). Building on the past success of the festival, Ed’s innovation was the addition of the Thursday night concert: “Tomorrow’s Stars”, which featured the top area middle school bands.

Mr. Michaels is also on the faculty of the Willoughby-Eastlake School District where he teaches instrumental music. One of his achievements was receiving an honorarium and publication from the Cleveland Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for his lesson plan “Timbre: Identifying the Tone Color of the Saxophone Using Pop/Rock Music Examples.” Ed was also instrumental is helping his school district receive a grant from the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation.

Rutherford, Marjorie (bassoon, saxophone)

M.M. and B.M. in Education, Cleveland State University. Currently performs in The Fine Arts Association Woodwind Quintet, w/Lakeland Civic Orchestra, the Village Saxophone Quartet, Corners Clarinet Quartet and Lakeland Civic Band.

Wilson, Lisa (oboe)

B.M. in Music Education, Cleveland State University. Private study with David McGuire and Thomas Moore. Full-time playing member and President of the Board of Directors with the Cleveland Philharmonic Orchestra. Freelance musician playing with various local ensembles and orchestras. Music director for a local church. Member of The Fine Arts Association Woodwind Quintet.


Theatre

D'Apice, Doriann

M.A. in Humanities, John Carroll University. B.S. in Education, Kent State University. Certified to teach English, Speech, Journalism and Theatre for grades 7-12. Actor in many local productions.

Hill, Dawn

B.S. from Miami University in K-Primary/Elementary Education with a concentration in Dramatic Expression. Masters in Elementary Administration, Cleveland State University. Performs locally in theatre productions.

Koh, Evie

Evie Koh holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music- Voice with a minor in German Studies from Ohio Wesleyan University. While at OWU, Ms. Koh participated in the Ohio Wesleyan University Choral Art Society, Ohio Wesleyan University Women's Chorus, and Opera Theater Workshop. During her final year at OWU she recieved a Student Assistantship with the Early Childhood Center as the Music and Drama Specialist. As a local actor, director, and stage manager, Ms. Koh has worked with the Cleveland Shakespeare Festival, Lake Performing Arts Center, Chagrin Valley Little Theater, Rabbit Run Community Arts Association, Willoughby South High School, and The Fine Arts Association.

Kosovich Peck, Sandy

Local actress appearing in many area theatre productions. Also directs youth theatre productions as well as instructs youth drama class. FAA Theatre Arts Camp Director, FAA Young Actors Ensemble Director, FAA Chili Con Comedy Improv Troupe Director.

Lister, Maria Thomas

B.A. Theatre and English, Oberlin College.  Training in Scenic Design, Scene Study, Stage Managing and Costuming.  Experienced Theater instructor, director, costume coordinator, stage make-up and youth leader.  Has acted in productions throughout the Cleveland area.  Special skills include Singing, Piano, Dialects, Comedy, Improv and "Cartoon" voices.

Malinowski, David

B.A. Theatre, with minors in English and Philosophy, Ashland University. Active in Theatre as Actor, Teacher, Director and Stage Manager. Previous experience includes Theatre Teacher and Assistant Director at Stagecrafters Summer Theatre Camp as well as at The Fine Arts Association. Has appeared in numerous community productions as Actor, Director and Stage Manager. Productions include: "Beauty and the Beast" (The Beck Centre for The Arts), "You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown" (The Fine Arts Association), "A Man of No Importance" (The Beck Centre for The Arts), "Woo and Woe" (Ashland University), and "Shelter" (The Cleveland Playhouse). Additionally skills in dance, juggling, playing the violin, stage combat, and singing (baritone).

Steck, Justin

Justin completed his Dramatic Arts degree from Cleveland State University with concentrations in Acting, Directing and Theatre Education. As well as acting all over Cleveland, Justin has directed and taught for various schools including Garfield Heights High School and Middle School, Cuyahoga Heights High School, Cleveland State University, St. Ignatius High School and Wickliffe Middle School.  He is currently the Artistic and Managing Director for the Garfield Heights Youth Theatre.


Visual Art

Crooks, Jessica

Jessica earned her B.A. at Malone University in Visual Art. She is also a licensed visual arts teacher K-12 in the state of Ohio.  Jessica teaches on site classes at The Fine Arts Association, as well as off site education programs for The Fine Arts Association, where she travels to different schools in the Willoughby-Eastlake School District. She has had three summer of experience as the Creative Arts Director at Camp Tecumseh YMCA in Indiana. She student taught in the Ceramics lab at Glen Oak High School and also abroad at the Kilmore International school near Melbourne, Australia.  Jessica is currently continuing her interest in art at Ursuline College where she is studying Art Therapy and Counseling.

Fleisch-Hughes, Diane

B.F.A. in Illustration & Advertising Design, Fashion Institute of Technology (NYC); Teaching Licensure, Notre Dame College; Professional Artist whose works have been featured in more than 25 art shows including: "International Juried Show" Art Center of Northern NJ, New Milford, New Jersey, "6 th Annual Art Inter/National, Here and Abroad" Boxheart Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA, "52 Works/52 Weeks" The Pop Shop Lakewood, Cleveland, OH, "The World As I See It" Mosaic the Gallery, Cleveland, OH, "Artist Open Studios" Lake Erie College, Painesville, OH, "The Figure Unveiled" Center for the Creative Arts, Yorklyn, Delaware. Substitutes as an arts educator in area schools. www.dianefleischhughes.com

Hauber, Erik

Erik is a licensed visual arts teacher (K-12) from Cleveland State University. He earned his Bachelor’s in Fine Arts (Drawing) from Ohio Wesleyan University and gained experience through an internship at Nickelodeon Magazine Inc. in NYC. Erik's work has been featured in local art shows, as he continues to create and experiment, allowing spontaneity to inspire his visual storytelling.

Klein, Danielle, ATR (Art Therapist)

Master of Arts in Art Therapy, Ursuline College, Registered Art Therapist (2000). In 1997 she began her career working with at-risk adolescents at an alternative school teaching students anger management skills, coping and organizational skills, and reinforcing healthy life choices. She also served clients at a counseling center working with children, adolescents, and their family members. At this center, art was used as a form of expression, communication, insight, and a means to strengthen relationships. In 2000 she facilitated art therapy groups as a prevention specialist.  Here she used art therapy as a tool when working with clients diagnosed with ADD or ADHD, autism, or behavioral and mental health issues. She also used art therapy as a means to increase social, organizational, and communication skills, teach coping skills with grief or divorce, and to promote healthy self-esteem. Danielle currently works part-time at a local school teaching bully prevention. Here she works to promote a bully free environment and healthy social skills for all students. She is also a member of the American Art Therapy Association.

Mercer, Kathy

Associate of Applied Science in Early Childhood Education and Associate of Applied Business in Graphic Arts, Lakeland Community College. Former Director and Preschool Teacher at St. Felicitas Preschool. Substitute teacher at Lakeland Community College TLC. Local artist specializing in watercolors.

Nagy, John

John describes himself is a mostly self taught artist.  He studied drawing at the collegiate level for several years at Cleveland State University and received his BA in Drawing in 2011. His work has been featured in area art shows, auctions and other local events. He strives to inspire his students to go further and to explore ways of using technique and skill to create compelling works of art.

www.jlnartistry.blogspot.com

Patterson, Sandy

M.A. & B.A. University of Louisville. Attended the Art Institute of Chicago on scholarship for 6 years. Taught at St. Xavier College , Chicago; Beverly Hills Fine Arts Association, Chicago; Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI; Lakeland Community College, Mentor. Has art work in the permanent exhibits of Louisville , KY Art Museum, The Phillip Morris Collection and The Providence , RI Art Club. Listed in Who's Who in American Art.

Peck, David

A.A., Lakeland Community College, B.A. in English Secondary Education, Art Secondary Education and Lutheran Teaching Diploma, Concordia University, Ann Arbor. Certified K-12 arts instructor currently teaching 7th and 8th grade at St John-Nottingham School. He has extensive experience in developing integrated curriculum and in preparing students for high school and college acceptance. He is also the art instructor for FAA's Summer Theatre Arts Camp.

Schleder, Laura

Ms. Schleder holds an MA in Teaching from Kent State University with a major in Art Education and a BA in Theatre with a focus in Lighting and Sound from Miami University.  Her teaching experience includes teaching Stagecraft, Ceramics, Drawing and Art at Stow-Munroe Falls High School in Stow, Ohio.  She has assisted with Governor’s Show artwork selection and entrance processes.  She has experience with many aspects of theatre:  the audition process, set construction, scenic painting, props mistress, costume construction, light board and sound board operation, and electric.  She has also run crew.  She is a member of Alpha Psi Omega, USITT, and NAEA.  She has a passion for working with students and helping them to experience the visual and performing arts.

Stiver, Dianne

B.F.A. Cleveland Institute of Art, with a major in Ceramics and a minor in Photography.  Ms. Stiver has taught Ceramics for twenty-five years and has exhibited and sold her ceramics artwork nationally and locally for nearly thirty years.   Her holiday ornaments hang in the White House.  She has been a featured artist in Cleveland Magazine and received her OSTNA (Ohio State Tested Nurse Assistant) in 2001.  She is a visiting artist at several local elementary schools and nursing homes.

Urbas, Mary

B.F.A., Cleveland Institute of Art majoring in Textile Design and Silk-Screening with a minor in Weaving and Printmaking. Fine Arts Gallery Coordinator and Diversity Program Specialist at Lakeland Community College.  Independent art consultant for Tri-Point Hospital, local and regional art galleries and artist clientele. More than thirty years teaching experience, guided gallery tours and seminar presentations including Textile Design, Silkscreen Printing, Printmaking, and Fiber.  Practicing Textile Artist and Surface Designer.  Memberships and affiliations include the Surface Design Association of America, Ohio Arts and Crafts Guild, Baycrafters, Larchmere Neighborhood Association, Craftsmen Guild of Pittsburgh, American Crafts Council, Chagrin Falls Merchants Association and Shaker Square Area Development.

Wolf, Robert

M.A. Ohio State University , B.F.A. Ohio State University , B.S. (Education) Ohio State University. Certified Art Educator. Has taught at the School of Fine Arts since 1958. Retired Mentor School Art Teacher.

Zolten Wood, Linda

Linda Zolten Wood has been inspired by the diversity of many cultures and has explored the world through paint-on canvas and public spaces; in works of clay fiber and jewelry. She is a graduate of Cleveland Institute of Art, has appeared on HGTV's National Interior Design program, ROOM BY ROOM; NORTHERN OHIO LIVE, CLEVELAND MAGAZINE, and the national THE ARTISTS' MAGAZINE. She held a Solo exhibit in The Corning Gallery, Cleveland Museum of Natural History, in 1993. View Zolten Wood's work at www.ZoltenWoodDesign.com.


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