Do you wish that you could express yourself through music? Interested in learning to sing or to play a musical instrument from an expert who can either explain the basics or take your skills to a higher level? At College of DuPage, we offer private lessons in voice, piano, guitar, percussion, and all band and orchestra instruments. Students can take classes with more than two dozen experienced instructors with outstanding expertise, qualifications, and advanced degrees, with lessons for all ages and ability levels.
Private Lessons for college credit: contact Pamela Eiten, Applied Music Coordinator, (630)-942-2391, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Non-credit lessons: Contact Continuing Education (630) 942-2208.
|Richard Armandi (Bass, Tuba/Euphonium, Jazz Bass)||Dr. Jennifer Barnickel-Fitch (Voice)|
|Alexander Djordjevic (Piano)||Daniela Folker (Violin)|
|Dr. Michael Fritsch (Piano)||Marsha Foxgrover (Organ)|
|David Govertsen (Voice)||Dr. Steven L. Havens (Piano)|
|Cathy Kuna (Cello)||Marlene Meyer (Voice)|
|Carolyn May (Flute)||Elizabeth Murphy (Voice)|
|Emi Murata (Piano)||Timothy Omerod (Woodwinds)|
|Steve Ramsdell (Guitar)||Dave Rice (Jazz Piano)|
|Dr. Karol Sue Reddington (Piano)||Thomas Sergey (Guitar)|
|Dr. Michael Stewart (Trumpet)||Cynthia Trowbridge (Piano)|
|Ben Wahlund (Percussion)||Paulette Velazquez (French Horn)|
|Ann Field Williams (Voice)|
Richard Armandi (Bass, Tuba/Euphonium, Jazz Bass) is one of the most versatile and in-demand musicians and educators on the Chicago scene today. As a jazz bassist he has performed with such luminaries as Marion McPartland, Barry Harris, Bobby Shew, David Baker, Jamey Aebersold, Dick Hyman, Scott Hamilton, Carl Fontana and many others, and has performed with such stars as Rosemary Clooney, Bob Newhart, Martin Short, Phyllis Diller, Rich Little and many others. As a tubist hehas performed with the Lyric Opera, American Ballet Theater, Grant Park Orchestra, Chicago Brass Quintet, and as featured soloist with the New Philharmonic, Ethos Chamber Orchestra, Concordia University Wind Ensemble, and at the 1992 International Tuba-Euphonium Conference. He has been recorded on many album projects including three with the Maxwell Street Klezmer Band, and on many commercial jingles. He is in constant demand as a bassist and tubist in almost every conceivable musical genre. As an educator he has served on the faculties of College of DuPage (Glen Ellyn, IL), Triton College (River Grove, IL), and Trinity Christion College (Palos Park, IL) teaching bass, low brass, jazz combo and improvisation. He has also served on the faculty of the Jamey Aebersold Summer Jazz Workshops since 1990.
Dr. Jennifer Barnickel-Fitch (Voice), Soprano, received her Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Michigan under the guidance of Lorna Haywood. She has won awards from the Metropolitan Opera National Counsel as well as Milwaukee Bel Canto Chorus and the Ann Arbor Musical Society. She is a member of The National Association of Teachers of Singing and has been part of the faculty at College of DuPage since the fall of 2003.
She is a frequent recitalist and her oratorio works include, Handel’s Messiah, Mozart’s Requiem and Mass in C, Schubert’s Mass in G, Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis and Mass in C, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Rutter’s Magnificat, and most recently, Verdi’s Requiem. She has been a member of Chicago Symphony Chorus and Lyric Opera Chorus and has covered the title role of Verdi’s Aida and Leonora in Il trovatore for da Corneto Opera, as well as being broadcast on WFMT in Chicago.
Dr. Barnickel-Fitch believes that everyone can learn to be a better singer. Her strengths lie not only in her ability to diagnose what is happening with the voice, but also to understand and teach the person as a whole. She believes in teaching the individual and finding the natural and distinctive voice within. Through a positive approach and solid technique, which focuses on support, diction and connection of mind and body, she can help instill proper control and confidence in the individual, and prepare the student for the professional world. Dr. Barnickel-Fitch has extensive experience in teaching many styles of music and has students with successful careers in opera, on Broadway, and in the pop/country/jazz world as performers, singer songwriters, arrangers, and teachers. She works with people of all ages and levels of ability.
Alexander Djordjevic (Piano) is known for his “formidable talent and technique,” “profound poetic sensitivity” and “elegant, expressive, yet powerful and electrifying playing.” The Washington Post has declared him “a constant infusion of original insight.”
“Djordjevic’s mastery and commitment are never in doubt,” writes Gramophone Magazine.
The 2010 winner of the Hungarian Liszt Society’s 35th Annual Franz Liszt International Grand Prix du Disque for his CD, Gray Clouds: Piano Music of Franz Liszt, Mr. Djordjevic follows an esteemed list of notable pianists who have received this honor for their Liszt recordings, including Vladimir Horowitz, Claudio Arrau, Alfred Brendel, and Andre Watts, among others. ?As a Fulbright Scholar, Alexander Djordjevic furthered his piano studies with the Russian pianist and pedagogue Vitaly Margulis at the Hochschule für Musik in Freiburg, Germany. In addition to being named a Fulbright Scholar, Djordjevic was a prizewinner in numerous piano competitions and has won acclaim for his concerto and recital performances in the United States and Europe.
Alexander Djordjevic has taught piano at the College of DuPage since 1994, and is also on the piano faculty of the Music Institute of Chicago.
Daniela Folker (Violin), Master of Music Performance, Roosevelt University, Chicago, IL, is the Principal Second Violinist for the Elgin Symphony Orchestra. Additionally, she is violinist with the Chicago Philharmonic, Chicago Sinfonietta, Ravinia Festival Orchestra and Chicago Opera Theater. Daniela has performed with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and the Lyric Opera of Chicago as well as performed for numerous televised programs including Oprah, Late Night with David Letterman, Soundstage, and with Celine Dion for an NBC Special. She has performed with such artists as Luciano Pavarotti, Andrea Bocelli, Josh Groban, Seal, Natalie Cole, and many others.
Dr. Michael Fritsch (Piano) received the Doctor of Music degree in Piano Performance from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois where he also was inducted into Pi Kappa Lambda, the music honor society. He is frequently called upon to present lecture-performances across the state. This season he is presenting master classes for piano teachers and students in Oak Park, Naperville, and Milwaukee.
Marsha Foxgrover (Organ) received her Master of .Music degree with honors in Organ Performance from the University of Southern California, where she was a student of Irene Robertson, a piano student of Lillian Steuber, and studied harpsichord with Mme. Alice Ehlers. She is also a graduate of Whittier College (California), and Moody Bible Institute where she studied with Robert Rayfield. She is a past winner of the Gruenstein Memorial Organ Competition in Chicago. Marsha’s concerts include Far Western Regional Conventions of the American Guild of Organists, an opening concert for the University of Michigan Organ Conference, the First Congregational Church of Los Angeles, and a solo Friday evening concert at the Mormon Tabernacle in September, 2010. She has performed at numerous colleges, churches and AGO Chapters, and is a past winner of the Pasadena, (CA) AGO competition. Her CD, “Barber’s Adagio and a Concert of Organ Classics,” has been widely acclaimed. A review in the Los Angeles Times stated: “. . . she has to be one of the most fantastic players around. Her playing is clear, vital, and her technique is phenomenal.” She is currently organist of the Wheaton Bible Church in West Chicago, Illinois, and Batavia Covenant Church (Illinois), is on the music faculties of the College of DuPage and Rockford University, and was the 2010-2011 Artist-in-Residence in Organ at Aurora University, (IL). Marsha also performed for the WFMT Bach Organ Project in October, 2014, as well as playing a concert on the Organ Series at Loyola University, Chicago.
After several years of teaching at Azusa (CA) Pacific University and Rockford (IL) University, Marsha began teaching organ at the College of DuPage in 2006. She is well qualified to teach the coordination required of manual and pedal technique to those with limited keyboard background, as well as helping students acquire repertoire of major composers and practical church repertoire. She considers it a privilege to inspire students to develop a love of organ music.
David Govertsen (Voice) recently stepped in on short notice at Lyric Opera of Chicago where he “handsomely replaced the ill Peter Rose as the producer La Roche” opposite Renée Fleming and Anne Sophie von Otter in Capriccio. Mr. Govertsen also appeared on short notice as Arkel in Pelléas et Mélisande with the Chicago Symphony under Esa-Pekka Salonen and as a soloist in James MacMillan’s Quickening with the Grant Park Orchestra. A former member of the Ryan Center at Lyric, his other mainstage assignments have included roles in Die Zauberflöte, Boris Godunov, Werther, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Madama Butterfly, and Roméo et Juliette. He returns to Lyric this season as the Sprecher in Die Zauberflöte and Priam in Les Troyens.
Mr. Govertsen recently created the roles of David/Bonobo in Matthew Aucoin’s new opera Second Nature for Lyric Opera Unlimited. Other operatic highlights of the past season include a reprise of La Roche at Santa Fe Opera, 2nd Soldier and 5th Jew in Salome with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, and the title character in Cimarosa’s Il Maestro di Capella with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. On the concert stage this season he appeared with the Madison Symphony, Fort Wayne Philharmonic, Bach Week Festival, Battle Creek Symphony, and Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra, among others.
Mr. Govertsen made his Carnegie Hall debut in 2011 as the Herald in Otello with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra conducted by Riccardo Muti. He is an alumnus of both the Santa Fe Opera and Central City Opera apprentice programs and holds degrees from Northwestern University, Northern Illinois University and the College of DuPage. Locally in Chicago he has performed dozens of roles, among them the title roles in Don Giovanni, Le Nozze di Figaro, Don Pasquale, and Gianni Schicchi, the Four Villains/Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Sarastro/Die Zauberflöte, Colline/La Bohème, Basilio and Bartolo/Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Don Magnifico/La Cenerentola, Zaccaria/Nabucco, Sparafucile/Rigoletto, Padre Guardiano/La Forza del Destino, Nick Shadow/The Rake’s Progress, and Friedrich Bhaer/Little Women.
Dr. Steven L. Havens (Piano) earned a Master of Music in piano performance from the University of Texas at Austin, and his PhD from the University of Iowa. Dr. Havens also studied at the Hochschule für Musik [Mozarteum] in Salzburg, Austria as a Rotary International Scholar. Principal areas of academic concentration include piano performance, collaborative piano, and piano pedagogy. Primary instructors include Michael Campbell, Danielle Martin, and René Lecuona. Dr. Havens holds membership in Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honor Society, Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society, and Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society. Dr. Havens was selected to participate in the International Festival-Institute at Round Top, Texas, as well as the Vienna International Masterclasses in Austria. He has performed in Austria, Germany, France, England, Belgium, and the Netherlands. He has served on the piano faculty of the University of Iowa All-State Music Camp, has been affiliated with Wheaton College Conservatory of Music, and served as a teaching assistant at the Interlochen Summer Arts Camp in Michigan. Dr. Havens is currently a member of the piano faculty at College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, Illinois, where he was named one of the outstanding faculty members in 2005. For further information, please visit stevehavens.net
“It is my sincere commitment to offer my students all I can to inspire outstanding performance and skill development in a manner that is inviting, accessible, and meaningful. As an instructor of piano, my primary objective lies in helping to foster and cultivate in each of my students his or her highest capacity in confident, expressive, imaginative, and intelligent music making. Success in music study – both in process and outcome – is dependent upon a number of factors, among them: thoughtful planning, effective communication, constructive guidance, creativity, and good humor on the part of both student and instructor.
Over several years of teaching, my students have taken part in a number of solo and concerto competitions. In addition to local and regional contests and events, these include: the Tuesday Morning Music Club Competition, the World Youth Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Youth Concerto Competition. My students have also attended programs such as the Credo Chamber Music Program at Oberlin College, the National Music Camp at Interlochen, and the University of Texas at Austin Summer Workshop for High School Pianists. Students have gone on to distinguished educational institutions such as Northwestern University, Roosevelt University, Elmhurst College, Wheaton College, Michigan State University, and Indiana University, among others.”
Cathy Kuna (Cello) joined the College of DuPage music faculty in 1991. She earned degrees in cello performance from the Wheaton College Conservatory of Music (student of David Szepessy, Bachelor of Music, 1985) and Northwestern University (student of Hans Jørgen Jensen, Master of Music, 1990). Mixing her classical training with strong influences of global and American roots music, she has performed and recorded with a number of Chicago area rock, folk, and improvising artists.
Ms. Kuna is a dynamic teacher who strives to instill in students a deep understanding and love of music. Lessons include the development of expressive playing, technical advancement, music theory, improvisation, composition, traditional cello repertoire and popular music. Ms. Kuna enjoys working with all ages and levels of students, including adult beginners, and designs the program of study to meet the particular needs and goals of each student.
Ms. Kuna is a founding member of Kairos String Quartet Chicago (www.KairosStringQuartet.com) and is a versatile arranger of music for string quartet and cello ensembles. She has worked in theater as a composer and improviser. She has had the pleasure of performing and collaborating with improviser, composer, and clarinetist James Falzone, pianist Sandra Carey, Turkish cabaret singer Gunduz Ast, jazz drummer Jimmy Bennington, contemporary folk musicians Sons of the Never Wrong, the Celtic/Americana duo Switchback, and erhu artist Ma Xiaohui. Ms. Kuna studied with Arabic oudist and violinist Simon Shaheen at the Arabic Music Retreat at Mt. Holyoke College, MA.
As an educator, Ms. Kuna has collaborated with the International Music Foundation teaching young students about the connections of language and music. Along with her private teaching, she is passionate about coaching chamber music, and also leads workshops in improvisation and world music. She has served on the music faculty of Opus Chamber Music Camp (Naperville, Illinois) for over a decade, and has previously taught at Wheaton College. Active as a church musician, she brings her love of creative arranging and improvising to the worship setting.
Carolyn May (Flute) received her bachelors’ degree in Music Education from the University of Illinios-Urbana and her Master of Music from Northwestern University. Ms. May has been principal flutist of New Philharmonic at the College of DuPage since its inception in 1977 and has been a soloist on numerous concerts. She has taught flute lessons at the College of DuPage since 1980 to students from age 7 to age 70! Also an accomplished pianist and accompanist, Mrs. May is a band director in School District 102, LaGrange. She also teaches privately at her home in LaGrange, and freelances in the Chicago area.
Marlene Meyer (Voice) earned a Master of Music in vocal performance from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. She is a past winner of the Rose Fae Thomas Competition, the American Opera Society of Chicago Competition, the Union League Emma Roe Competition, and both District and Regional Metropolitan Opera Auditions. She has been a soloist with the Chicago Symphony, the Grant Park Orchestra and Chorus, and the Cleveland Orchestra at the Blossom Festival.
“I believe there should be no barriers to studying voice. I particularly enjoy working with young students just discovering their voice, helping them develop their core skills and helping them prepare auditions to further their studies. I also enjoy working with older students wishing to maintain their skills as they age, or those who are beginners to the joy of singing and wish to supplement their enjoyment of participation in community or
Emi Murata (Piano) , MM, NCTM has taught Class Piano, Keyboard Kapers and offered private instruction at the College of DuPage since 1991. She enjoys teaching a diverse population, including children as young as age 3, college majors, as well as retirees. Ms. Murata focuses on her students’ unique and individual needs, whether they are taking lessons for leisure, for more serious study, or choosing a career in music. Competition winners, students who have limited time to practice, as well as those who have specific goals, have found success in her studio. Ms. Murata believes that good communication is a major key to success and works towards giving her students experience in a variety of musical styles and genres.
Over 30 years experience teaching piano, theory, sight singing and ear training to all ages and abilities, Ms. Murata served on the faculty in institutions such as Columbia College, College of DuPage, and Sherwood Conservatory. Equally adept at instructing beginner through college levels, Ms. Murata also has a private studio in Oak Park, and is an experienced clinician, has published articles, and enjoys presenting master classes throughout Illinois. An avid spokesperson on the benefits of ensemble playing, her students have performed in this capacity at state and national levels.
Ms. Murata made her debut at age sixteen as concerto soloist with the Elmhurst Symphony Orchestra. She earned her B.S. in Mathematics and Computer Science, with distinction in Music from University of Illinois at Chicago, and received her Masters of Music in Piano Performance at University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. In addition to performing as a soloist, Ms. Murata is a member of Piano à la Quartette and co-organizes the Glorious Grands: A Piano Extravaganza!!!, an 8 Steinway grand piano concert held here at COD’s McAninch Arts Center, and at Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Symphony Center for their Keys To The City Piano Festival.
Emi Murata is an active member of several performing and educational organizations. Former president of both Musicians Club of Women and Salt Creek Music Teachers Association (awarded Music Teachers National Association’s 2011 Local Association of the Year), she was voted Member of the Year by her colleagues at Chicago Area Music Teachers Association as well as Salt Creek Music Teachers Association, and was chosen to be a 2014 MTNA Foundation Fellow, a distinction held only by one other SCMTA member in the Foundation’s 15 year history.
Emi’s passion for teaching is evident, as her students travel from as far as Michigan to study with her, and stay active in her studio for many years. Emi is looking forward to working with you and your individual learning style and catering to your unique needs.
Elizabeth Murphy (Voice) has a Master of Music degree from Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois. She has been a member of the Music Faculty at College of DuPage since 1995 and was recently honored to be named as one of College of DuPage’s Outstanding Faculty Award winners. Her performance experience includes The Britten Pears Festival, Aldeburgh, England; Chautauqua Institution, Chautauqua, New York; Blossom Festival, Cleveland, Ohio. In addition to solo work with local orchestras and ensembles, Elizabeth’s Chicago area performing includes work with Chicago Opera Theater, DuPage Opera, Illinois Opera for the Young, and Light Opera Works.
Timothy Omerod (Woodwinds) started his musical career playing sax at the age of nine. He earned a Master of Music in bassoon performance from Northwestern University, in Evanston Illinois, where he studied under Wilbur Simpson from the Chicago Symphony. He started teaching in high school, continued through college, has taught at the College of DuPage since 1996 and in the westerns suburbs of Chicago since 1983. He studied sax, flute, clarinet, and oboe from professional performers in the Chicago area. He is a member of the National Flute Association, as well as the American Federation of Musicians, Chicago Local.
His playing experience has covered a broad spectrum: principal bassoon with the Fox Valley Symphony; sax, flute, keyboards, and vocals in top forty bands across the Midwest; Naperville Chamber Winds; Willowcreek church in Barrington Illinois; and shows, jazz, studio work, and jobbing dates around Chicago as a woodwind doubler, since 1983.
Also a composer, Mr. Omerod has written original middle school level solos for sax, flute, clarinet and oboe, where they are performed in competition each year. He also writes original music and lyrics for pop and contemporary religious genres.
As a doubler, Mr. Omerod understands the concerns of playing various woodwinds. He has experience across the entire spectrum of styles. He has successfully taught every age level for many years. He believes that playing is a passion that can always remain enjoyable, while instilling discipline and organizational ethics to insure progress.
Steve Ramsdell (Guitar) earned a Bachelor of Music in guitar performance and a Master of Music in jazz pedagogy, both from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. He performs commercial music, original music as a leader, jazz classics, and solo classical music. Some highlights include New Year’s Eve celebrations at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Steve’s Looking For… CD release party at SPACE in Evanston, performances with Spider Saloff at the Iridium in New York, and shows with Matt Geraghty at Ondojazz in Lisbon and the Chicago Jazz Fest. Steve’s musical arrangements can be heard on Spider Saloff’s CD Like Glass, while his original compositions appear on his release Looking For… and his first CD, Steve Ramsdell Group. Steve has taught private guitar lessons and leads guitar ensembles at College of Dupage since 1994, and has also taught at Wheaton College since 1998. Mr. Ramsdell enjoys working with all levels and strives to help students develop the skills needed to pursue their musical goals.
Dr. Karol Sue Reddington (Piano) has performed and held faculty and administrative positions in the US, and internationally in Paris, Fontainebleau, Zurich, Moscow, Prague, Reykjavik, Bermuda, Jamaica, and in Hong Kong and Tokyo. Dr. Reddington’s 2002 Carnegie Hall debut, at Weill Concert Hall (NYC), was shared with Swiss violinist/colleague, Mathias Boegner (available upon CD). As COD piano faculty of 7 years, Karol Sue was awarded a College of DuPage Liberal Arts Faculty Grant expediting the lecture-performance of Olivier Messiaen’s Vingt Regards., subsequently an invited presention at the 2010 Fine Arts International Conference, Srinakharinwirot University, Bangkok, Thailand. Messaien was also a highlight of her Les Arts Georges V concert series performance, American Cathedral of Paris. In support of new composers, recent performances/works of Jonathan Zimmer and John Booth are available upon CD.
Receiving the Doctor of Musical Arts performance degree from the College Conservatory of Music (CCM), University of Cincinnati, Dr. Reddington’s pianistic work includes study with Eugene & Elisabeth Pridonoff, Marion Hall MacFayden, Soulima Stravinsky, Alfonso Montecino, James Tocco, Hans Graf, Rafael de Silva, and Gaby Casadesus. She has also coached with Menahem Pressler of the Beaux Arts Trio, the Tokyo String Quartet, the Quatuor Via Nova de France, and the IRCAM Ensemble Contemporain de France.As director/artistic director, and faculty of Bermudian music conservatories/schools, she initiated the establishment of the international chamber music series ‘Some Enchanted Evening’.
In addition to serving as a Piano Examiner of Canada’s Royal Conservatory of Music, and after returning to the USA (2006), she has participated as judge/adjudicator/master-class presenter for Northern Illinois University, the Music Institute of Chicago, the Chicago Merit School of Arts, the Glen Ellyn Piano Teachers Guild Competition, Wheaton College’s Concerto Competition, Chicago Roosevelt University’s Roberta Savler Competition, and for the Illinois State Music Teacher Association’s State Collegiate Young Artist Piano Competition, Northwest Regional Piano Competition, and ISMTA piano assessments. Dr. Reddington was awarded the 2014 designated ‘Outstanding Member of the Year’ of the Music Teachers National Association west suburban chapter. In spring of 2014, Dr. Reddington was the ‘dedicatee’ of Margaret Philbrick’s acclaimed book, A Minor, A Novel of Music, Love and Memory, the story/commentary of an emerging young pianist. Maintaining an active private studio, her students have achieved inclusion/awards in the Cairn-Maling Piano 2012 Piano Competition of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. So supportive and involved in the great musical brilliance, involvement and growth of young pianists, she is the current Director of the Berkley-Pendell Piano Scholarship Competition, the newly rejuvenated youth competition of the western Chicago suburban area.
Dave Rice (Jazz Piano) began studying piano at age 6, and has played professionally since age 16. After playing in bands and singing in choir and music productions through school, he received a Bachelor of Arts in Music Education from SIU Carbondale. Dave traveled on the road extensively through the 70’s and 80’s. In 1992 Dave began touring with Otis Rush. He has toured Europe, Asia, and North and South America with Otis Rush. On those tours he played shows with Ko Ko Taylor, Lonnie Brooks, Ronnie Baker Brooks, and Luther Allison. He has warmed up for artists such as George Benson, Buddy Guy, Pearl Jam, Jimmy Page, Herbie Hancock, and Robert Plant. Dave received a Master of Music degree from VanderCook College of Music in Chicago. He released an album in the 1990’s called “Locution”. The title track is in video form on his website (www.davericeproductions.com). He also has played with Donna Lori, the Cryan Shames, Gloria Newlun, Bobbi Wilsyn, Carlos Johnson , Pistol Pete, Dan Hayes Orchestra, Buddy Rich Band and many others. Dave has written a book “Improvisation on the ii-V-I and Blues progressions”. Dave teaches in the Valley View School District in Bolingbrook/ Romeoville and at College of Dupage, and plays music full time. Most recently he has organized and runs an open jazz jam session at Shanahan’s in Woodridge on Thursday nights. He continues to play nightly throughout the Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin areas. The schedule of where Dave is appearing is also on his website.
Thomas Sergey (Guitar) teaches students of all ages and skill levels and in all guitar styles. He is as enthusiastic about teaching beginners as he is working with advanced musicians. Using traditional, Suzuki, and other teaching methods, Tom adapts his teaching style to the individual goals, skill level, and temperament of each student. His passion for teaching is inspired by seeing his students succeed, whether it is in an individual lesson, on the concert stage, or in the recording studio. Tom has a Master of Music degree from the University of Miami and has been teaching for ten years at the College of DuPage. He has also taught at Roosevelt University and the University of Illinois. Besides teaching and performing, Tom is also active as a composer and regularly participates in contemporary music concerts.
“One of the rewarding aspects of teaching guitar is that, due to the instrument’s widespread popularity and its use in a variety of musical styles, I have the privilege to work with students of all backgrounds and skill levels and who differ in their musical aspirations. With all my students, I make every effort to motivate each one to develop into the best musician they can be. And so, it’s thrilling to see my students make progress and become more accomplished musicians, as it elevates their self-confidence which in turn motivates them to achieve still higher levels of performing skill. In this way I endeavor to provide my students with musical skills for a lifetime of musical enjoyment and participation, whether it is of a recreational nature, at the professional level, or anywhere in between.”
Dr. Michael P. Stewart (Trumpet) holds the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC. Dr. Stewart maintains a busy schedule as a private teacher, performer, recording artist, director, author, composer and arranger. He has taught trumpet in numerous Chicago-area high schools for over twenty years. Over 30 of his trumpet books are available in Kindle or iBook formats, and over 100 of his compositions or arrangements have been published in the United States and Europe. He has led or performed with the Chicago Grandstand Big Band, the Shout Section Big Band, the Gold Coast Orchestra, the Dana Legg Jazz Band, the Deep Blue Big Band, and the Chicago Brass Choir. He has released three recordings of trumpet solos. More information about Dr. Stewart is available online at www.stewmuse.com.
Cynthia Trowbridge (Piano) earned a Master of Music in piano performance from Indiana University, where she studied with Menahem Pressler. She received her Bachelor of Music from DePauw University. She has been a private piano teacher, class piano instructor, and staff accompanist at College of DuPage since 1992.
Ms. Trowbridge performs as a collaborative pianist, vocal coach and soloist throughout the Chicago area. Currently an accompanist for vocal and instrumental studios at Wheaton College, she has also served as pianist for the Glen Ellyn Children’s Chorus and DuPage Opera Theater, and as music director for Wheaton College Opera Music Theater productions.
Ms. Trowbridge enjoys working with students of all ages and abilities. She incorporates theory and technique into all levels of study, and enjoys the relationships that she establishes with her students. Her emphasis is on Classical repertoire, but is happy to incorporate varying styles of music in which her students show an interest.
Paulette Velazquez (French Horn) holds a Bachelor of Music in horn performance from the University of Illinois and a Master of Music in horn performance from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Before settling in Chicago, Paulette was principal horn of La Filarmonica de Jalisco for two years, located in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico. Paulette’s principal teachers include A. David Krehbiel, former principal horn San Francisco Symphony, and Dan Gingrich, principal Chicago Symphony. Paulette is an active freelance musician playing regularly with Elgin Symphony, Chicago Sinfonietta, Joffery Ballet, the New Philharmonic and at various theaters in Chicago. Paulette is a member of the applied faculty at Lewis University and the Saint Xavier University as well as The College of DuPage. She also maintains a very active private teaching schedule teaching students from the Joliet, Lockport, Frankort and Plainfield area schools. Since students all have different learning styles, Ms. Velazquez constantly looks for new ways to explain musical ideas and tries to reach every student by whatever means possible. Although some students may only achieve the basic level of enjoying music while others may attain a high level of understanding, Ms. Velazquez believes that all levels of musicianship are important to our society.
Wahlund serves as the Director of Percussion at the College of DuPage and music education faculty at North Central College. He conducts the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra Percussion Ensemble and is Program Director for the Birch Creek Summer Music Performance Center’s Percussion and Steelband Session in Egg Harbor, Wisconsin.
Locally, Ben Wahlund is a percussion specialist for Naperville-School District 203 where he directs the NCHS Drumshow – a high school percussion ensemble concert that draws over 2,000 paying audience members in one weekend (www.nchsdrumshow.com)and enjoys teaching many successful private students in his home studio – Black Dog Music Studio (blackdogmusicstudio.com).
Ben Wahlund serves as the Director of Publications for the Illinois Percussive Arts Society, performs as part of area orchestras, the ¡The Screaming Norwegians! Percussion Duo, the Naper Chamber Players, endorses Innovative Percussion Sticks and Mallets and Sabian Cymbals, and his compositions are performed around the world (published by Bachovich Music, HoneyRock Publications, and Innovative Percussion). Ben enjoys running, watching movies, reading books and attending concerts.
Ann Field Williams (Voice) earned a Master of Music in vocal performance from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, under the tutelage of Susan Clickner, Terry Decima and John Moriarty. She has been a member of the College of DuPage voice faculty since 1998, and is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing.
An accomplished performer and a passionate advocate for the art song, Ms. Williams is active in recital, chamber and church music. She has been a featured soloist with regional choruses and opera companies, including DuPage Chorale, New Classic Singers and various roles with Opera North (Vermont), Dallas Lyric Opera and DuPage Opera Theatre. Prior chamber performances have been with the Blossom School of Music (Ohio) and Applehill Center for Chamber Players (New Hampshire).
Ms. Williams has a gift for understanding each student’s needs and providing them with a better understanding of their own voice and its potential, through an enduring technique which encompasses breathing, diction, and execution of text. Her knowledge and experience allows her to instill confidence, professionalism, and a strong work ethic in her students, whether beginning vocal studies or building upon an established vocal foundation.