Our Team - Music Faculty
Cathy graduated from Shenandoah University with a BM in French Horn Performance in 1997. She and her husband Walt moved to Wyoming in 2006 to be closer to family. A mom to 4 girls, Cathy and her children took our Musikgarten class in 2006, and she started teaching several Family Music classes and Preschool classes with Ms. Mary in January 2015. She is currently the Artistic Director of the Cincinnati Civic Orchestra, and the Registrar/Office Manager here at The Center.
Cheryl Raine, MM
Cheryl Ann Raine is both a CCM and Miami graduate, with a Masters of Music Education in Supervision and a Major in Organ. She has been active as a music educator and church musician for over 35 years. Cheryl is the current Music Director of Hartzell UMC and is an adjunct professor here at the College of Mt. St. Joseph, teaching Organ lessons and Class Piano. Degrees: M.S. Music Education, Miami University.
Claire Timmerman's diverse musical studies, travels, and innate passion for teaching have led her to have a dynamic and holistic approach as a music educator. She enjoys teaching children and adults, and lives and breathes the Suzuki philosophy that “every child can” taking it one step further, believing that “every person can”. Claire believes that music, being truly universal, is an integral part of the human experience, and that everyone should have an equal opportunity to learn and love music. She strives to share her love of music with her students, and to nurture and cultivate their artist within.
A native of Cincinnati Ohio, Claire Timmerman has been teaching since she was a teenager herself, and currently teaches at the Cincinnati Music Academy and out of her residence in Northside. She has taught violin, cello and guitar at the Cincinnati Music Academy since 2011, and was the director of the Suzuki Strings program from 2014-2016. She also spent many years teaching at the Wyoming Fine Arts Center on all instruments in both private and group class settings, and is regularly invited back as a guest teacher and speaker for Suzuki parent talks. Her students regularly receive accolades in competition, performances, and auditions. Several students have continued their music education at the School for Creative and Performing Arts, and most recently had a student perform with the Honors Performance Series at Carnegie Hall in New York City.
Ms. Timmerman returned home in 2011 after several years of residence and music studies in Paris, France. Claire was born into a musical family where her passion for music was nurtured from a very young age. Her parents, both Suzuki teachers, studied in Japan under the direct tutelage of Dr. Suzuki. At the age of 2, Claire started playing the violin using the Suzuki method, and started cello shortly thereafter. By her late teens, she began her Suzuki teacher training and taught at her first Suzuki workshop in St. Petersburg, FL. Soon thereafter, she was being invited to teach Hip-Hop and Jazz violin courses at different workshops and group classes in the midwest.
In 2008, Ms. Timmerman began teaching violin, cello and guitar at the Peaslee Neighborhood Center in Over-the-Rhine with underprivileged students. There she taught classical, hip-hop, jazz and blues, in a curriculum designed by herself and her colleagues and heavily influenced by Suzuki Method principles. Her innovative teaching approach further inspired her to create and teach a music curriculum in a math tutoring program at Mr. K’s Enrichment College Consortium beginning in 2009.
Claire attended SCPA in Cincinnati, Ohio, and later graduated from Interlochen Arts Academy, in Michigan, where she majored in violin performance. She then majored in Music Therapy with a minor in Cello Performance at the University of Dayton. In 2009, Claire took residence in Paris, France, where she studied Jazz at Paris VIII Université and began touring internationally as an independent singer-songwriter, performing her original work at some of Europe’s acclaimed festivals and venues. Claire released her first album of original works entitled “Between Worlds” in the spring of 2013. Since then, she has continued to perform regularly in small chamber groups and as a Singer-Songwriter.
Instrument or Specialty:
Piano (ages 4 through adult)
Voice (ages 9 through adult)
Darlene taught her first piano lesson as a teenager and loved her award-winning high school show choir. After earning her Music Education degree from Florida State University, she taught high school and middle school choir and trained church vocal groups in Florida. In 1999, she moved to Cincinnati and established her private voice and piano studio; additionally, she taught preschool music classes and participated in church music programs.
Darlene loves to help people of all ages grow in ability and confidence as they explore the world of music.
Donald Broerman, a Cincinnati native, earned his BM in Classical Guitar Performance at the University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) under the direction of Clare Callahan, graduating Magna Cum Laude in 2013. He has also studied with David Case at the University of Oregon (School of music), as well as, Jazz guitar with Mike Denny and Chris Sorenson and started his training at the Musical Arts Center in Cincinnati.
During his time at CCM, Mr. Broerman performed in master classes from internationally acclaimed artists such Oscar Ghiglia, David Russell, Robert Belinic and Rupert Boyd and participated in classes given by Zoran Dukic, Marcin Dylla, Carlos Perez, Johannes Möller, Daniel Lippel and others. Coruses completed for degree include: Guitar Pedagogy, Guitar repertoire and History, Guitar Ensemble.
Mr. Broerman is an active composer, whose compositions are primarily solo guitar works. He briefly studied composition with Terry McQuilken at the University of Oregon, Orchestration at CCM and private lessons with Jennifer Jolley (Composition Professor at Ohio Wesleyan, President and Co-founder of N.A.N.O. Works Opera Company). A budding interest in this field has led to performances of his own works at CCM’s North of Here, Classical Revolution and a commission by The Ascend Project.
Mr. Broerman serves the community through his work in non-profits. He is the current President of Greater Cincinnati Guitar Society, as well as, a member and guitar adjudicator for the Ohio Music Educators Association. Donald is a dedicated pedagogue. His students have won gold medals in the Royal Conservatory of Music examinations. He currently teaches at Indian Springs Academy of Music, Wyoming Fine Arts Center and Leaves of Learning, select Cincinnati Public schools and is a co-director of and instructor for the CCM Guitar Youth Workshop.
Elaine Wisniewski, MM
Elaine Wisniewski joined the Wyoming Fine Arts Center in June 2016. An active teacher over the last 9 years, Elaine has taught at Music Notes Academy, Montclair State University Preparatory Center for the Arts, and Franklin Township Suzuki Program.
Ms. Wisniewski graduated from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville in 2016 with a Masters in Suzuki Pedagogy. She also holds a Masters in Viola Performance from Rutgers University where she studied with Craig Mumm, Associate Principal Violist of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. Elaine completed her Bachelor of Music Education degree at Montclair State University where she was also president of the American String Teachers Association chapter.
An active performer, Elaine Wisniewski has performed with the Garden State Opera, the Tim Keyes Consort, the Freelance Ensemble Artists of New Jersey, the Livingston Symphony Orchestra, and the Metropolitan Orchestra of St. Louis. During the summers Elaine has participated in Stokes Forest Music Camp, ASTA’s Chamber Music Institute, and Meadowmount School of Music. She has also performed for Patricia McCarty, Jeffrey Irvine, Sheila Brown, Karen Ritscher, Chris Tantillo, and the Shanghai Quartet in masterclasses.
Originally from New Jersey, Ms. Wisniewski has been taken all over the country through her music adventures. In 2015 she attended a Violin Craftsmanship Institute where she learned to repair instruments and rehair bows. In May 2016 she relocated to Ohio to join the Cincinnati Music Academy faculty and the Wyoming Fine Arts Center.
Gayna Bassin, MM
Gayna Bassin teaches traditional violin to students from age 6 to adult, with emphasis on reading skills, technique and musical styles. She has been on the faculty of the Wyoming Fine Arts Center since 1997.
Mrs. Bassin was a member of the First Violin section of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra for twenty years. She has performed as Concertmaster for Musica Sacra and the Cincinnati Community Orchestra. During college, she performed in many international music festivals, including Blossom (Kent State University, OH), Tanglewood (MA), the Casals Festival in Puerto Rico, and the Orchestra de les Jeunesses Musicales.
Mrs. Bassin has been a soloist with Cincinnati Community Orchestra,the Colorado Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Windsor Symphony. She has played many solo and chamber music recitals locally and is an active member of Matinée Musicale Cincinnati. She also plays klezmer violin in the Queen City Klezmorim band.
Mrs. Bassin received a Bachelor of Music Degree from the Curtis Institute of Music, where she studied with Ivan Galamian, Jaime Laredo, and Jascha Brodsky. She received a Master of Music Degree from Indiana University at Bloomington, IN, where she studied with Josef Gingold. She has been coached in chamber music by members of the Guarneri, Curtis and Budapest Quartets.
Inna Terekhov, MM
Education and Training
- Bachelors and Masters degrees in piano performing, Piano pedagogy, Master of accompanying and chamber music ensemble at Music College of Kishinev, Moldova USSR 1966-1971 and State Conservatory of Music 1972-1977 Moldova USSR
- Post-Graduate study in Piano Pedagogy
- State Institute of Music and Pedagogy by Gnessin-1984-1985 Moscow Russia
- Certified Suzuki Piano Teacher
- Suzuki Association of America, Inc. Cincinnati, OH 1992
- Organ Courses with professor: Dr. David Mulberry
- Piano Faculty at NKU Music Preparatory Department 1995-Present
- Center for the Arts Wyoming ,OH 1995-Present
- Private Studio Wyoming OH 1990-Present
- College Mount St. Joseph Preparatory Music Department 1991-1995
- School of Creative and Performing Arts Cincinnati OH 1990-1995
- Piano faculty Kishinev Music College Moldova USSR 1970-1989
Ultimately, she strives to create musicians, each with their own heart, soul, mind, and a natural musical talent. Her students have praised her dedicated and inspiring teaching. She strives to instill a love for piano and overall appreciation for all music. Mrs. Terekhov wants to show the beauty and breadth of classical repertoire. She ensures that every student is confident in themselves and their musical abilities. She want them to be proud of who they are and what they are able accomplish. Mrs. Terekhov won’t allow her students to settle for less; on the contrary, aspire to be their very best.
Inna Terekhov is an active member of the OMTA, RACE and RCME certificate programs. Her warm and patient teaching approach is particularly suitable for beginners and kids, but her exceptional performance background and artistry gives her the ability to confidently teach and prepare students at the most advanced levels. In addition to a very active teaching career, she has founded and in an acting Director of the Summer Piano Camp and Ensemble workshops at the Wyoming Fine Arts Center since 1998.
Every year a large number of her students participate in the National and Local auditions, such as JMF Music Guild, Audition –Festival CCM, and JME where students are recognized with exceptionally high scores. Many of her students are prize winners in Local, Regional and National Competitions, such as OMTA, Buckeye, Heidelberg University Performance Competition, DePauw University, Young Artists Piano Competitions, Concerto competition at the UC- College-Conservatory of Music and others.
Her students are very active in community service. Students in collaboration with Mrs. Terekhov have registered with the Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce as part of a non-profit music organization, “Share the Music”, founded in 2007. As part of this program, students perform throughout the Tri-State region at various retirement centers, nursing homes, hospitals and schools receiving great appreciation for sharing their passion of music and quality of performances.
Mrs. Terekhov students often appear at Showcase recitals conducted by the OMTA at the Aronoff Center and Art Museum.
Dr. JaeEun Lee, DMA
Dr. JaeEun Lee has both her master's and doctoral degrees in violin performance from University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music (CCM). Her minor studies are in string pedagogy. Dr. Lee holds a bachelor's degree in music performance. It was completed in South Korea.
Dr. Lee has been playing the violin for eighteen years. Her playing experience consists of participation at numerous music festivals in South Korea, Guam, China, Indonesia, and Italy. She also holds High School teaching certification in South Korea.
Her teaching experience spans both South Korea and Cincinnati. As a Suzuki teacher, she trained Suzuki method in North Carolina and California and currently teaches at the Wyoming Fine Arts Center and the University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music Preparatory Department. She teaches both Suzuki and the traditional method.
In her childhood, Dr. Lee also studied piano and organ. She currently serves also as an organist at the Sacred Heart Church. This experience allows her a unique approach to teaching, as she is able to also accompany her students in their lessons.
Jennifer Higgins Wagner
Jennifer Higgins Wagner began her studies on the cello at the age of 12 and five years later made her solo debut with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. After receiving her Bachelors’ Degree in Music Performance in 1997 from the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music, she began teaching privately and performing professionally both locally and across the United States. She has played in Master Classes with Janos Starker and the Tokyo String Quartet and has performed with the Kentucky Symphony Orchestra, the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and the Starling Chamber Orchestra, with whom she toured Germany in 1992.
In 2007 Jennifer began expanding her repertoire beyond the classical world. With her folk/pop/blues duo, Lines and Spaces she has made regular performances at the Rohs St Cafe, Speckled Bird Café and at the Southgate House, as part of the River City Music Club’s Monthly concert series “One More Girl on a Stage”. In 2007 Lines and Spaces gave made a history-making appearance at the Eden Song folk music festival where they were the only group to get a standing ovation in the nearly 3 decades the festival has existed. Since then Jennifer has performed with Crosby Still Nash and Young at the Sundance Film Festival, onstage at the Cincinnati Fringe Festival, and done a great deal of work in the recording studio both for local artists and for independent film scores.
Jennifer is a registered Suzuki Teacher trained through book 5. Her training has been with Jean Dexter, Nancy Hair, Carol Tarr and Carey Beth Hockett, as well as Rick Mooney. She has been on the Faculty at Earlham since 2003, and has taught Suzuki Cello with the Suzuki Co-operative of the Cincinnati Public Schools since 2008. Her students have performed with the Cincinnati Junior Strings and The Cincinnati Symphony Youth Orchestra and gone on to continue their studies at CCM.
Dr. Jill Phillips, DMA
Jill Phillips, mezzo-soprano, received her Doctor of Musical Arts degree in voice from the University of Cincinnati's College-Conservatory of Music. In addition to her studies, she has performed as an alto soloist with the Bach Ensemble of St. Thomas in Terrace Park, OH. In the fall of 2017, Jill sang the alto solos in J.S. Bach's Mass in B minor at Cincinnati's Christ Church Cathedral.
Jill performed as the alto soloist in the Peoria Bach Festival in 2017. In addition, she was the alto soloist in the Verdi Requiem with Bradley University in Peoria, IL, in the fall of 2016. During the summer of 2015, she was a Young Artist at Opera Saratoga, where she covered the roles of Dido in Purcell's Dido and Aeneas and Cenerentola in La cenerentola.
She earned her Master of Music degree in voice from the University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory of Music. While at CCM, Jill sang the roles of Marcellina in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro, the Old Prioress in Poulenc’s Dialogues of the Carmelites, and Baba the Turk in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. In addition, she participated in the Opera Fusion: New Works project with CCM and Cincinnati Opera.
Jill has been an Apprentice Artist with Des Moines Metro Opera and made her mainstage debut at DMMO in 2013 as the Zweite Mägd in the company's production of Elektra. She has sung with Kentucky Opera, NANOWorks Opera, Cincinnati Chamber Opera, and Dayton Opera. In addition, Jill has been a Studio Artist with Wolf Trap Opera.
She has sung scenes from such operas as Anna Bolena, Cendrillon, La cenerentola, The Crucible, Dead Man Walking, Don Carlo, Giulio Cesare, L'italiana in Algeri, Peter Grimes, and Vanessa.
In addition to performing, Jill teaches private voice lessons at the Wyoming Fine Arts Center in Wyoming, OH. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. While at Luther College, she performed in the opera scenes program and the spring opera productions.
Madison, is Musikgarten trained and certified in Music Makers (Pre-Piano) and Group Piano. She studies piano with Dr. Nozomi Yamaguchi at the College Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati. In spring (2018), she participated and placed 2nd in the international competition, "Great Composers Best Bach Performance."
As a young child, Madison's musical training started on her mom's lap with the Musikgarten curricula at the Wyoming Fine Arts Center. She began learning piano through the Musik Kids group class, and is now completing the circle by teaching Pre-Piano and Group Piano.
Mary has been teaching children since 1978, first as a classroom teacher, then as a music teacher in both private school settings and in her own music studio.
In 1999, Mary came to the Center as a Family Music teacher. Four years later, she started a full program encompassing all levels of the MusikGarten curriculum -- from Baby Music through Group Keyboard.
In addition to directing and teaching in the Musik Kids program, she is currently teaching for the Cincinnati Suzuki School at the Wyoming Fine Arts Center, bringing the MusikGarten curriculum to Suzuki's youngest children and teaching music theory to the older students.
Matt Wiles is a Cincinnati based professional bassist and instructor. Holding a Bachelor of Arts in music from Northern Kentucky University, Matt performs on both electric and acoustic basses in all styles. His performance schedule keeps him regularly busy in Cincinnati and its surrounding areas, as well as performances in Chicago and New York City.
In addition to freelance performance, recording, and teaching, Matt performs with many original bands around town such as Cincinnati Entertainment Award winning jazz/funk/hip-hop band Eclipse Movement, salsa band Clave Son, and progressive jazz groups Art & Science and the Brandon Coleman Quartet.
Michael Ronstadt, MM
For two decades, Michael G. Ronstadt has entertained audiences throughout North America on cello, guitar, mandolin and voice. An exceptional musician-composer conversant with a wide range of styles, he not only executes captivating solo performances, but participates regularly in duo and trio situations with a diverse camp of young, innovative musician-songwriters including Lisa Biales, Serenity Fisher and David Trotta.
His versatile talents have been tapped for concert and studio work by such artists as David Bromberg, Linda Ronstadt, Muriel Anderson and Craig Bickhardt. Throughout his extensive performance schedule, he has been teaching steadily for the last 10 years in Arizona, Cincinnati, and the last 5 years in greater Philadelphia where most of his 12 students auditioned and blossomed in the Reading Youth Orchestra.
Working with students of all ages, Michael has also taught cello workshops for Common Ground On The Hill (Westminster, MD), Tucson Cello Congress (Tucson, AZ), Trappe Community School (Collegeville, PA), High Peaks Music Festival (Hunter, NY), as well as co-teaching with Scottish cellist Seylan Baxter at Patrick Burgh Halls (Glasgow, Scotland).
Michael displays genre-blending explorations on cello and guitar in complement to thought-provoking lyrics. He is a much sought-after studio musician, who has appeared on more than 75 albums in the last dozen years. Dan Buckley writing for The Tucson Citizen noted his “amazing command of the typical and exotic sounds of the cello, a true virtuoso and a man of instinctive musicality.” Michael holds both a Master and Bachelor of Music in Cello Performance and studied under esteemed pedagogues Yehuda Hanani, Nancy Green and Dr. Gordon Epperson.
Richard Seil, MM
Richard Seil (Suzuki Piano Coordinator) is a graduate of Indiana University (MM), Baldwin-Wallace College (BM), all in piano performance. His wide background in collegiate and private teaching extends over 20 years. In addition, Mr. Seil’s Suzuki certification through Book 5 of the piano curriculum has provided him with a wealth of skills to positively influence developing musical minds of all ages.
When he is not teaching or performing, Mr. Rich enjoys attending concerts, jogging, watching football, pampering his pets, rescuing animals and, of course, spending time with his fiancée in Northern Kentucky.
Rose Gowda, MM
Rose is a native of Cincinnati and received her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in performance from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, graduating summa cum laude. During her time at CCM, she studied with renowned violists Masao Kawasaki and Catharine Carroll and served as a graduate teaching assistant. Mrs. Gowda has been the recipient of multiple awards, including CCM’s Outstanding Academic Achievement Award, and scholarships from the Clef Music Club & Southern Ohio Music Teachers’ Association, and was a winner in the Geraldine B. Gee International Viola Competition.
A former Suzuki kid herself, she is a passionate advocate of the Suzuki philosophy and is a registered Suzuki instructor and member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas. She is the Director of the Suzuki String and Orchestra programs at the Wyoming Fine Arts Center, where she teaches a full studio of Suzuki violin and viola students ages 4 and up in private lessons, group classes, and orchestra. She is also a Director of Suzuki Violin for the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music’s Preparatory Department. She believes in nurturing and developing the whole child through music. In addition, she is a trained MusikGarten instructor.
Rose is an active and versatile freelance musician and performs a wide range of styles from classical to pop/rock. She performs extensively with several groups, including the Midnight Rose Trio, Serenity Fisher & the Cardboard Hearts, and the Rosenthorns (a Celtic band).
For the past decade, Serenity Fisher has taught private piano lessons, songwriting, and playwriting at the Wyoming Fine Arts Center. Her extensive training in piano, vocal technique, musical theatre and writing fuel her passion for teaching.
She offers a well-rounded, enjoyable musical experience for both children and adults. Lessons are tailored to the individual needs and interests of each student. The lessons may include: development of technique and theory using method books such as Faber, Bastien, and Alfred’s; using chord charts to play and sing popular music; songwriting and composition; and improvisation. Her teaching style is fun, inventive and engaging. Serenity’s teaching style emphasizes creativity and self-expression; maintaining a safe and respectful environment that values each students individuality; and fostering a lifelong love of playing music.
Serenity is a dynamic group instructor, teaching groups of students the art of songwriting. She is also versed in teaching students to compose using not only their own voice, but also on piano, ukulele, and guitar.
She provides opportunities for her students to perform outside of recitals, including playing at professional music venues and local festivals, sometimes opening for sets her own performances.
She performs original music with her band, Serenity Fisher and The Cardboard Hearts, which features two other teachers from The Center: Rose Reidmiller Gowda on violin and Michael G. Ronstadt on cello. She’s released three studio albums: Watercolor Harmonies, Rogue Strawberry, and Carousel of Love. The band call their music: theatrical indie dream pop with a Tim Burton-esque twist.
Serenity co-founded the Tangled Leaves Theatre Collective with playwriting partner Robin O’Neal. She’s written, produced, and acted in five original plays, three of which were winners of the Cincinnati Fringe Festival’s “Audience Pick of the Fringe” award. As a theatre instructor, Serenity enjoys helping students develop characters and story lines and to learn how to collaborate with others to create an entirely original theatrical production.
Serenity is happy to call Cincinnati home, though she tours and teaches both nationally and internationally, including teaching piano, voice, and choral pieces at a music camp in Ireland. When not teaching or performing, she enjoys doing puzzles and listening to audiobooks.
Song-Hun Nam, MM
- Master of Music in Piano, University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music
- Bachelor of Music in Piano, University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music
- Freshman year at Xavier University, Cincinnati, OH
Professional Teaching Experience
- Adjunct Professor of Piano, Music Department, Northern Kentucky University
- Piano Faculty, Preparatory Department, Northern Kentucky University
- Piano Faculty, The Center for the Arts, Wyoming, OH
- Private studio students from across Greater Cincinnati area
- Director of Music, Pianist, Organist, St. Thomas Church, Ft. Thomas, KY-present
- Pianist, Matthew 25 Ministries, Blue Ash, OH
- Pianist and Music Director, St. Andrew Kim Church, Cincinnati, OH
- Frequent Solo and Chamber Music Concert Appearances in US and S. Korea
- William Black-University of Cincinnati
- Dana Buel-Xavier University
- Further studies with James Tocco, Frank Weinstock, Richard Morris, Richard Fields
- Chamber Music Studies: Peter Oundjian (Tokyo String Quartet), Henry Myer (LaSalle Quartet), James Tocco, Sandra Rivers, Donna Loewy, Yehuda Hanani, Norman Johns, Erez Ofer
Awards and Scholarships
- Special Recognition Award of Faculty by Graduating Seniors, Northern Kentucky University
- Prize awards from the McEloy Piano Competition, the Rildia B. O’Bryon Cliburn Competition
- University Graduate Scholarship Awards, University of Cincinnati
- Undergraduate Scholarship Awards, University of Cincinnati
Spencer Elliott, MM
Spencer is a working musician. Outside of lessons, he plays across the Midwest with Zack Attack, the “Greatest Throwback Party Band Ever.” With Zack Attack, Spencer regularly plays clubs and casinos, weddings, private parties, and corporate events. At weddings, Spencer often provides lovely instrumental ceremony music, or lively instrumental cocktail music.
Spencer plays as a soloist for private parties and events, performing jazz, classical, and solo guitar arrangements of popular songs. His “solo career” has had him performing at some of the most beautiful destinations for weddings and private parties across New England and the Midwest.
As a performer, Spencer has gained valuable experiences that he gladly shares with his students. Through work with cover and event bands, Spencer has had to learn to transcribe by ear and prepare guitar parts to be performance ready. In lessons, he uses this training to transcribe songs that students want to learn. Through his work as a soloist, Spencer has had to arrange entire ensembles into a single guitar part. In lessons, he can arrange a guitar part to a particular student’s skill level. His transcription and arrangement skills allow students to learn almost any song they please.
Spencer doesn’t just teach how to play songs, but finds connections between songs, patterns in songwriting and guitar parts, and directs each student’s lesson plan along a smooth arc of learning. This allows students to hone old skills while tackling new skills.
Rather than just playing guitar, Spencer understands music. In part, this is due to his experience as a professional musician, but he also benefits from a Master of Music in Music Education (Boston University, 2013), and a Bachelor of Arts in Music (Otterbein University, 2006). The balance of higher education and practical application of that education has given Spencer a broad, open-minded approach to music and music education.
Tom Buckley is one of the most in demand drummers and drum instructors in the Cincinnati area. While attending the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati, he performed with a variety of ensembles including the Jazz Lab Band, the Jazz Ensemble, and numerous small jazz combos. He also played in several of the school’s highly acclaimed musicals. He was the first recipient of the now annual Bob Bodley award and scholarship, which is given to the student who most exemplifies characteristics of humility, creativity, and professionalism.
He has been teaching private lessons regularly for 11 years and has experience teaching students as young as 3 years old up through adults that are active, professional musicians. He has also instructed drum lines in the Cincinnati area and has taught at several marching band camps and drum set camps around the country.
In addition to his busy teaching schedule, Tom regularly performs with some of the best musicians in the area. He can be heard with his band FLOCKS, The Cincy Brass, the Brad Myers Trio, the Rick Van Matre Quintet, and the Buckley/Kline Duo. He can be heard on several acclaimed recordings including FLOCKS self-titled debut, Dan Karlsberg’s Tales From the Winter Solstice with JD Allen, Brad Myers/Mike Sharfe’s Sanguinaria, Buckley/Kline Duo Live at Filament, the Brad Myers Quintet album Prime Numbers, the Rick Van Matre Quintet album Lines Above, and Will Wedmedyk’s Awakening.
Tom is from Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he started playing percussion at age nine.
Valerie Bobosh, MS
Valerie received her Bachelor of Music from SUNY Potsdam, and her Master of Science in Education with a concentration in music education from the University of Dayton. Suzuki Piano Teacher Training, levels 1 through 6, was pursued at Capital University. Further professional development includes Kodaly music education from the Kodaly Institute at Silver Lake College, and Orff –Schulwerk music education. Additionally, Valerie is a licensed and certified Musikgarten instructor.
As an Ohio certified teacher of Music Education, K-12, she has taught in both public and private schools. Her professional experiences also include over 20 years as a liturgical choir director, choral accompanist, and ballet school accompanist.
Victoria Ellington, MM
Soprano Victoria Ellington received her Master’s of Music from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) where she studied with Professor William McGraw. During her time at CCM, she was able to workshop several new operas including Blind Injustice and Awakenings with the Opera Fusion: New Works program, a joint collaboration between Cincinnati Opera and CCM Opera. In past seasons she has performed at Cincinnati Opera and the Kennedy Center among other places.
Victoria earned her B.M in Voice Performance, as well as a B.A in Religion, from Oberlin College and Conservatory of Music. While studying at Oberlin, she performed the role of La Feé in Cendrillon. A versatile performer, Victoria also participated in performances with Oberlin’s Theater productions of Dessa Rose and for colored girls. Midway through her undergraduate tenure she started to study Jazz Voice under La Tanya Hall in addition to her classical studies with Timothy LeFebvre. In collaboration with Cleveland Opera Theater's New Opera Initiative, Victoria performed the role of Rachel in the Midwest premier of Nkeiru Okoye’s Harriet Tubman: When I Crossed the Line to Freedom.
Victoria has been the recipient of many awards, including First Prize in the George Shirley Vocal Competition and a recipient of the A. Grace Lee Mims award from the Cleveland Foundation for her work in preserving the art and performance of the Spiritual.
Victoria has been teaching voice lessons privately for a few years. She specializes in Opera, Classical, Musical theater, Jazz , Gospel and Pop. Victoria is a teaching Artist with Cincinnati Opera, and teaches by guiding each student to form solid technical foundations to unlock their potential and allow let their voice soar.
Yuko Tsujimoto, MM
As a Starling Competition first prize winner, Yuko studied at CCM where she completed her Bachelor’s degree in Violin Performance. While at CCM, Yuko was the concerto competition winner and performed the Tchaikovsky violin concerto with the Philharmonia Orchestra. Upon completion of her studies at CCM, Yuko went on to receive Master’s Degree in Violin Performance from Indiana University with Violin Pedagogy as a cognate field. Her teachers include Naoko Tanaka, Franco Gulli and Won Bin Yim. Yuko is also a former member of the Kentucky Symphony Orchestra and has been on faculty at the Center since 1997.