Kendell Dempster began his training at Newark School of the Arts under the direction of Alfred Gallman's Newark Dance Theater. This led to his acceptance into the Arts High School in Newark. Upon graduation he was named a Star Ledger Scholarship recipient in dance and attended Purchase College where he received a B.F.A. in dance. Kendell has also trained at American Ballet Theatre's Summer Intensives. From 2008-2010 he was a performing member of the Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble in Denver, Colorado. His musical theatre credits include performing with Ben Vereen in "Follow the Star". Kendell is also an accomplished costume designer.
Alonzo Hall (Ballet) grew up in Plainfield, NJ and began his dance training at his city's local dance studio at the age of eleven. Upon graduating high school he enrolled into Bloomfield College and studied music production and sound engineering. Hall later attended Rutgers University's Mason Gross School of the Arts where he received his B.F.A in Dance under the direction of Paulette Sears and Julia Ritter. Hall was a member of the school's pre-professional dance company known as University Dance Works under the direction of Randy James. Hall had the opportunity to perform works by Ronald K. Brown, Benoit-Swan Pouffer, Xiao-Xiong Zhang, Randy James, Ferdinand Dejesus, and Marie Alonzo-Snyder.
Carolina Jaurena (Salsa) Carolina's career is filled with a long list of
dance credits that includes Tango & Tango at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln
Center, Tango Fantastico at the Bellearyre Music Festival, on Broadway at
Town Hall in the show "Tangos for la Milonga" with Romulo Larrea and, in
2005, she traveled to Europe to perform with the Sudwestfalen Philarmonic at
the Symphonic Tango night in Hilchenbach-Lutzel, Germany. In addition, she
was also a featured dancer, singer and actress in the Two River Theatre
Company production of Blood Wedding and performed in the Buenos Aires month
celebration at the World Financial Center. She was also invited to perform
at The 10th Annual Orlando International Fringe Festival in Florida, "Tango
Summit" with the Panamerican Symphony Orchestra, and "100 años de tango, de
Villoldo a Piazzolla" at the prestigious Solis Theatre in Montevideo,
Uruguay. Carolina is also a much sought after performer in television and
film, having appeared on such shows as Fox 5 "Good Day New York" with Penny
Crone, "Today in NY" on NBC. In 2006 she was a first prize winner on the
popular program Sábado Gigante on Univision. However, the height of her
professional career was marked by her role as a primary dancer in the
feature film Random Hearts directed by Sidney Pollack and starring Harrison
Ford. Carolina talents are not just limited to teaching, but she is a much
respected and sought after instructor as well. Over the years, she has been
invited to perform and teach at several Dance Festivals including; Colorado
Dance Festival, D.C. Tango Festival, Boston Tango Festival, and the "Tango
Norte" 2007 Stockholm Tango Festival and with "Tango Five at the Einhalden
Festival in Germany. She performs regularly with Symphony and Chamber
Orchestras in the United States including, Nashville Chamber Orchestra,
Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, the Westfield Symphony Orchestra, and
Phoenix Symphony Orchestra.
Kamille King (Hip Hop, African Dance, Tiny Steps) Born and raised in East Orange, New Jersey, Kamille King was introduced to Performing Arts at Cicely Tyson School of Performing and Fine Arts and trained by Clarissa Newby-Phillips. Although Kamille was surrounded by young artists of many creeds, it was there where she discovered ballet, modern, jazz, West African, and musical theater. During her high school years, Kamile join the Usaama Dance Company under the direction of Karen Love. After graduating Cicely Tyson, she spent four years at Smith College where she majored in African American Studies and developed a thesis in the Dance Department. While at Smith College, Kamille studied with Clarrissa Newby-Phillips, Alfred Gallman, Susan Waltner, Roger Blum, Mark Morris Co, Mark Allen Davis, Nia Love and Donna Meija. Later she returned to New Jersey to work with the Sharron Millers Academy of Performing Arts where she began her career as a dance instructor. In addition to the Sharron Miller's Staff, Kamille serves as a Teaching Artist and Choreographer to Irvington High School, Quitman Street Community, and several elementary schools in Montclair and East Orange, New Jersey. While her passion for teaching excels, Kamille finds joy and fulfillment in performing and creating work. "Art is the only way to run away without leaving home." - Twyla Tharp
Leslie Lucy (Hip-Hop) received her training from Premier Dance Theater, NJ and Broadway Dance Center in NYC. She began her professional dance career performing in numerous music videos, touring Europe with Jodeci and dancing "back-up" for several Hip-Hop and R&B artists. She has performed as a "back-up" dancer on: Soul Train, The Party Machine, HBO's Def Comedy Jam, and BET. She has also danced on MTV's "The Grind" for three years. Leslie also includes movie credits to her resume. She has appeared in films such as "The Money Train", "Drop Squad", and "Substitute 2". Miss Lucy is currently a dance mentor for an all girls adolescent program called "Best Friends" and is presently teaching for Maria Priadka School of Dance and Newark School of the Arts.
Clarissa Newby-Phillips (Dance Director) received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance from Rutgers University's Mason Gross School of the Arts, and a Masters of Arts degree in Dance In Higher Education from New York University. Mrs. Phillips holds N.J. Certification in Dance: Teacher of Vocational Arts and Production. Her professional career experiences include: Dance Specialist and Day Camp Director of YWCA of West Essex and Hudson in Orange, NJ; Teacher of Jazz Dance, Rutgers University Mason Gross, New Brunswick, NJ; New Jersey Performing Arts Center United Way Artist-in-Resident where her dance work was selected to be presented for Judith Jamison at the annual Women's Day Luncheon, Newark, NJ. She has taught Dance Education at Cicely Tyson School of Performing and Fine Arts, East Orange, NJ. She was also Director of Dance at the prestigious Blair Academy in Blairstown, New Jersey. Clarissa is currently Adjunct Professor in the division of Humanities and Social Sciences at Northampton Community College in Allentown, PA and Teacher of Performing Arts at Adelaide L Sanford Charter School, Newark, NJ. "Dancing with excellence portrays growth of body and mind."
Crystal Newby-Reynolds (Jazz Dance) studied dance at the official schools of the Garden State Ballet and Gallman's Newark Dance Theatre. She performed professionally with Gallman's Dance Theatre and the Baltimore Tilt Dance Company. Mrs. Newby-Reynolds is a graduate of Morgan State University, Baltimore, MD where she studied dance and physical education earning a B.S. and was honored with an "Outstanding Senior Award." She was also the recipient of the Dorothy Stanley Scholarship Fund which provided a scholarship to study dance at the Alvin Ailey School, New York. She received a Master of Arts from New York University after studying Performing Arts Administration and Dance Education. Her passion and love for dance is seen throughout the community, for she teaches and choreographs dances for children and adults in the public schools, churches and for various organizations. She is the Dance Ministry Director for St. Matthew AME Church, Orange, NJ. She has served on numerous committees to develop dance curriculum for the public school. Mrs. Newby-Reynolds taught dance at Whitney E. Houston Academy of Creative & Performing Arts, East Orange, NJ where her students have performed for numerous events including NJPAC, the New Jersey Educational Law Center’s "Kids in Concert" and a campaign pep rally for Senator Barack Obama. She founded the Arts Conservatory, Inc. in pursuit of her vision to "Empower people through dance." She is currently the dance teacher and lead teacher for the performing arts department of Cicely L. Tyson Community School of Performing and Fine Arts (Elementary).
Dennis Wilson (Tap) is a native of Niagara Falls, NY. He earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and Theater Arts Studies from Niagara University. He is an accomplished choreographer, having staged productions of Ragtime, Sophisticated Ladies, Smokey Joe's Cafè, Cabaret, Jesus Christ Superstar, Ain't Misbehavin, All That Jazz, Miss Saigon, and The Wiz. Mr. Wilson studied dance (Tap, Jazz, Ballet) with the late great Beverly Fletcher. Performance credits include: The National and Canadian Touring Companies of Five Guys Named Moe and many Regional performance credits. Mr. Wilson can now add the title of Producer to his credits, having founded his production company Dendewil Productions. The company produced Shades of Gray, Reading Between The Color Lines. Directorial credit: Little Butchie Sings. Mr. Wilson is a member of The Actor's Equity Association and is the Teacher of Theatre Arts at Cicely L. Tyson Community School Of Performing and Fine Arts (Elementary) in East Orange, NJ.
Donna L. Holmes (Drama Chair) Actress/Storyteller/Playwright. Theatrical Education: Negro Ensemble Professional Actors Workshop; H/B Studios, and American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Performances include: For Colored Girls...; The Piano Lesson; Colored People's Time; Ode To Panama; Dracula; Godspell; Stage Door; George White's Scandals. As an artist, she has worked with the following institutions: Negro Ensemble Company; CBA Theater; The Colfax Group; African Globe Theater; NJ Symphony Orchestra; NJ Historical Society; Newark City Hall; and the Whole Theater. In the role of Artist Facilitator she has worked for Plays For Living NY, Playwrights Theater of NJ and Child Assault Prevention Project of NJ. In addition to her duties as Drama Chair/Instructor at NSA, she works as a teaching artist for NJPAC in schools public and private throughout Essex County. During the summer, she is the resident Drama Instructor for the Summer Youth Performing Arts Program at Newark Symphony Hall.
Elma Adams (Voice, Staff Accompanist) a graduate from the Juilliard School of Music in Piano Performance, she also received a B.A. and M.A. from Kean University where she is presently an adjunct piano faculty since 2003. She is also an adjunct piano faculty with the Westminster Choir College.
Linda Battle (Voice and Piano) B.A. Jersey City State College. Since 1998, Ms. Battle has taught grades K-8 in vocal music and directs the chorus for the Paterson Board of Education. Previous to that, she taught vocal music and directed chorus for K-8 for the Irvington Board of Education. From 1989 to 1995 she played principal roles in films, soap operas, commercials and corporate videos. From 1973 to 1989 she taught music and directed chorus for the Newark Board of Education.
Karina Bruk (Artist-in-Residence) pianist, holds degrees from Manhattan School of Music (BM, MM) and Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University (DMA). Her principal teachers have been Marc Silverman and Paul Hoffmann. She has performed solo, chamber music and lecture recitals both in United States (Weill Recital Hall, Steinway Hall, New Jersey Performing Arts Center among others) and abroad (most recent were the World Piano Conferences in Novi Sad, Serbia), as well as presented Master Classes and Workshops on performing and auditioning at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center and throughout the local area. Currently she concertizes with pianist Paul Hoffmann as a Bruk-Hoffmann duo. Dr. Bruk has been a recipient of numerous awards; among them the Genia Robinor Award for Teaching Excellence presented by the Piano Teachers Society of America. She has articles published in DSCH Journal and the Musicians and Composers of the 20th Century Encyclopedia; her doctoral treatise entitled " The 20th-century Well-Tempered Clavier: 24 Preludes and Fugues of Dmitry Shostakovich" was presented at the 4th International Conference of Arts and Humanities in Honolulu, Hawaii. From 2003 to 2011 she served as the Piano Department Chair of the Newark School of the Arts instructing in piano and chamber music. She is one of the judges for the Jeffrey Carollo Scholarship Auditions at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center. Dr. Bruk is currently a full-time faculty member at the Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University where she serves as the Graduate Advisor/Coordinator of Graduate Studies, Director of Chamber Music and Coordinator of Piano Lab.
Marilia Caputo (Piano) Brazilian pianist Marilia Caputo has performed throughout Europe, Latin America and the United States both as soloist and as a collaborative pianist with violinists Koh-Gabriel Kameda, Daniel Guedes and Ignace Jang, the São Paulo String Quartet, with singers Reginaldo Pinheiro and Juliana Gondek, and cellists Antonio Del Claro and Barbara Switalska. Caputo has performed at the Pepperdine University Festival (USA), Northern Chamber Music Festival (Brazil), Para International Chamber Music Festival (Brazil), Summit Festival (USA) and Hawaii Performing Arts Festival (USA) where she also coached. She has performed in New York at Weill Hall; in Moscow at Rachmaninoff Hall, Malie Sall, and Glinka Museum; in Salzburg at the Mozarteum, and in Rio de Janeiro at Cecilia Meireles Hall. Marilia was awarded the “Virtuose” scholarship by the Brazilian Ministry of Culture, while studying with Boris Slutsky at the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore. She has also participated in Master Classes with Arminda Quintero, Reginald Stewart, Daniel Pollack, Vladimir Viardo, Oleg Maisenberg and Hans Graff, among others. Caputo is a DMA candidate at Rutgers University and studies with Prof. Paul Hoffmann.
Michael Costantino (Piano, Jazz Piano, Jazz Studies) attended Berklee School of Music in Boston as a recipient of the "DOWN BEAT" magazine scholarship. He has studied with such prominent musicians as Keith Jarrett, Charlie Banacous, Madame Chaloff, and Jesse Green. Mr. Costantino has performed in United States and abroad as both sideman and conductor. He has done numerous television and live shows. Among them are: "The Mike Douglas Show," "The Don Ho Show," "The Al Harrington Show" (from Hawaii Five-O fame), "The Dick Jensen Show" and the off-Broadway musicals "Oh! Calcutta" and "Hair" as a pianist, arranger and conductor. He and the Ralph Graham and Easy Pieces Band opened for such notable artists as Earth, Wind and Fire, Richard Pryor Coasters, Robert Kline, Esther Phillips, Etta James, Martha Reeves, Sha Na Na, and the Persuasions. Since 1996, Mr. Costantino has been on the faculty of Newark School of the Arts, maintained a private studio in Hackettstown, NJ and performs regularly at Cortinas in Paterson, New Jersey.
Daryl Covington (Percussion) Drum instructor Daryl Covington has been studying drums for over 15 years. He attended Berkelee College of Music in Boston, Drummers Collective in New York, and Sam Ash Music Institute. Experienced in all styles of music, he currently works in the tri-state area professionally as a freelance musician.
Anna Dukhovny (Piano) has a B.A. in piano performance and accompaniment from State Music College, Ukraine and a M.A. from St. Petersburg Academy of Culture,, Russia. She has twenty-five years experience in teaching piano in public and private music schools in the Ukraine, Russia, Israel and New Jersey, instructing children and adults. She uses classical and modern methods in developing interpretation, technical proficiency, sight reading and ear training.
Dr. Grace Hackett Faroul (Voice) is on the faculty of Newark School of the Arts, the New York City Department of Education, and The Assisi Performing Summer Arts Festival in Italy, where she performs in opera and concerts. She received her Ph.D. from Trident University International, a Master of Science degree in Supervision and Administration from Mercy College, and Bachelors and Masters degrees in Voice and Music Education from Manhattan School of Music. She has toured Holland, Swizerland, Germany and Basle under Schweizer Tournee, performing the role of Frankie in its production of Carmen Jones. Dr. Hackett has also performed in the New York and New Jersey metropolitan area, Mexico and the Caribbean in opera, oratorio and recital. She is a frequent soloist with various groups, including the United Choral Society under the baton of David Randolph and the Essex Chorale with the esteemed conductor, Dr. DeCosta Dawson. Dr. Hackett made her professional debut at Carnegie Recital Hall. The New York Times and The Amsterdam News respectively stated: "Ms. Hackett has a regal stage presence, and her low register has a lovely timbre." She was also part of the cast that performed Porgy & Bess on the Lake Stage in Bregenz, Austria, and also at the Metropolitan and New York State Theaters in New York City, where the "Live From Lincoln Center" telecast of that opera was nominated for an Emmy as the Outstanding Classical Music/Dance program of the 2001-2002 season. Dr. Hackett was also part of the cast at New York's City Opera that premiered the opera Margaret Gardner by Richard Danielpour, based on Toni Morrison's Pulitzer prizewinning novel, Beloved. Dr. Hackett shares the spotlight as one-third of the musical/dramatic aggregation known as Talent-In-Triplicate. Her discography includes two seasonal CDs - Birthday Of A King and Because This Child Was Born - A Riverside Labor Of Love and A Black Heritage Concert with the Bel-Canto Quartet. She can also be heard on CD and Video in Spirituals In Concert and A Carnegie Hall Christmas with sopranos Kathleen Battle, Jessye Norman and Frederica Von Stade, under the direction of Andre Previn and James Levine.
Eugene Feigin (Piano) M.M. in piano solo, ensemble and accompaniment. Mr. Feigin was a founding member of the Rachmaninoff Trio and the Feigin Duo. He performed extensively in his native Russia, Israel, Europe and the United States. He recorded with Centour Records and Moscow Radio. He has 40 years of teaching experience and was a former faculty member of the Gnessin Institute of Music and Ippolitov-Ivanov College of Music in Moscow. For the last 22 years he has been a piano and ensemble teacher (last 10 years as director of the music).
Suzanne Forsberg (Music Theory, Music History, Piano), a tenured professor at St. Francis College, Brooklyn, NY, holds a B.Mus. degree from the University of Utah, an M.A. from Harvard University, and a Ph.D. from New York University. At St. Francis College, she founded and directs a concert series that brings artists from throughout the U.S. and Europe. In November, 2010, she received a Merit of Honor Award from the University of Utah Alumni Association for distinguished professional achievements and service. Since 2003, she has participated as a Speaker in the Humanities program, sponsored by the New York Council for the Humanities. Her lecture on J. S. Bach was featured during both the NY State Humanities Month and the first NYC Early Music Festival. Dr. Forsberg specializes in the symphony and concerto of the eighteenth-century. In addition to co-authoring a volume in the Garland Series The Symphony 1720-1840, she has written for The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, MGG, Current Musicology, MLA Notes, and Haiti-Observateur. A lead article on her rediscovery of the symphonies of Joseph Camerloher was published in Musik in Bayern. Her chapter on Joseph Camerloher and Placidus von Camerloher will appear this year in The Symphonic Repertoire, Vol. I: The Eighteenth-Century Symphony (Indiana University Press). She has been a board member of the Society for Eighteenth-Century Music and in April 2010 chaired the Conference Arrangements for the Biennial Meeting in Brooklyn, NY. She was recently elected treasurer of the Mozart Society of North America. Dr. Forsberg participated in piano master classes at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, and piano pedagogy at the Aspen Music Festival. A Woodrow Wilson fellow, she spent a year in Munich as the recipient of a German Academic Exchange Fellowship.
Andrew Hayward (Clarinet) currently holds a B.M in clarinet performance from Rowan University and a Masters from the Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University. He is currently pursuing his DMA from Rutgers under the guidance of teacher Jessica Phillips, acting principal clarinetist of the Metropolitan Opera. Over the last decade, Andrew has had the opportunity to be a featured soloist with many groups at both Rowan and Rutgers. In his spare time, Andrew runs a marching band design company based out of New Jersey.
Nadine Herman (Music Director, Voice) Newark School of the Arts Soprano, Nadine Herman, received her M.M from the Juilliard School and her B.M. from Temple University. Some of her solo appearances have included performances with the Festival of Contemporary Music of the N.Y. Philharmonic (Richard Dufallo,Conductor) under the auspices of Pierre Boulez; the Orchestre de Bordeaux-acquitaime with the legendary Pierre Dervaux and Orchestre de I'le de France. She has been heard in concert in such festivals as the B.K.A. in Berlin, Germany (one woman show); Festival de I'le de France, Festivale of Trieste, Italy. Ms. Herman has won critical acclaim from the NY Times for her performances of contemporary music ranging from the German composer, Aribert Reimann to the U.S. premiere of "Harawi," the brilliant song cycle of Oliver Messiaen, one of the great composers of the 20th century. She has been a teaching fellow at the Juilliard School, given master classes at the College of William and Mary and the C.I. F. M. of the Nice Conservatory in France with Lorraine Nubar and Dalton Baldwin. Voice teachers and coaches have included Beverly Johnson, Lorraine Nubar, Dalton Baldwin and Gérard Souzay. Latin singing sensation Frankie Negron studied with Nadine Herman at Newark School of the Arts. Nadine Herman has been very successful in getting her students into the leading conservatories such as The Manhattan School of Music, Mannes College of Music, Oberlin College, The New England Conservatory, Eastman-Rochester School of Music, Carnegie Mellon University and the Julliard Pre-College.
Daryl Hester (Guitar, Lute, Recorder) B.A., Kean College of New Jersey. A resident of Linden, New Jersey, Mr. Hester began his guitar studies at the age of 10 and performed in master classes with guitarists Alice Artz, Raymond Burley, Eliot Fisk, Jorge Morel and lutist Paul Odette. Upon graduating, he began and is currently a student of Patrick O'Brien, studying guitar and lute. Mr. Hester has appeared on radio and television and is a prolific recitalist throughout the United States. He recently made his Carnegie Recital Debut in 1988 at Weill Recital Hall (Carnegie Hall). He has appeared with St. Luke's Chamber Ensemble, Ars Musica Antiqua and is a member of Rutger's Collegium Musician. Mr. Hester is also on staff at the Fred W. Martin Center for the Arts in Jersey City, NJ.
Hayes Johnson (Jazz & Bass Guitar) Mr. Johnson has studied Jazz and Pop music for over twenty years. He has performed with the late Sarah Vaughan, George Benson, Joe Thomas Quintet, Jimmy McGriff, Richard "Groove" Holmer, Johnny Hammond and has worked with many big bands and orchestras. Mr. Johnson is also a member of the Musicians Guild of Essex County.
Aki Kasuga (Flutist and Pianist) was born in Kyoto, Japan. She is a graduate of the Kyoto Horikawa Municipal Senior High School of Music (Kyoto, Japan) and of the Mannes College of Music (New York). She was a finalist at the Mainichi Competition in Osaka in 1996 and 1997, and garnered further attention when she was one of ten young musicians selected from all over Japan to play at the Cosmo Youth concert in 1997. In 1998 she arrived in New York to continue her musical education. Her principal flute teachers included Mary Barto, Toyoko Ogumi, and Shoko Imai. During her year of study she participated frequently in master classes with notable artists, including James Galway, Michael Martin Kofler and Jean Claude Gerard and became a member of the Japanese Taiko drum performance group "Taiko Masala," specializing in Japanese Flute (Shino-bue). In the past year She has worked as a keyboardist/flutist and recorded and toured with a number of accomplished acts including Kirsten Price, Erika Matsuo, Dreemtime, Big Brooklyn Red, Jessica Colasante and World Sound Traveler.
Nadiia Khodakovska (Violin) At the age of six Nadia began her path as a musician showing her passion for music since before she started everyday schooling. She has taken part in Regional Competitions in Ukraine and won First Prize twice. Nadia performs the violin with a professional passion that you can rarely find in any occupation. She gained her bachelor's degree from Music College (Lutsk, Ukraine) and her master's from prestigious National Music Academy of Ukraine by P.I. Tchaikovski in Kiev. From 2001-2003, while working full-time in the National Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine, Nadia toured all over the Europe: Germany, France, Spain, Switzerland, Austria, Poland. During this time she performed under famous conductors such as Roman Kofman (today principal conductor of the Bohn Symphony Orchestra) and Volodymyr Diadiura. For a short period of time, Nadia took part in the Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2004, Nadia founded the Dolce Vita String Quartet which, as an ensemble, took part in festivals throughout the Ukraine and Europe with the repertoire of over 200 music pieces by composers including Mozart, Brahms, Schubert, Ravel and Vivaldi. They have been performing onboard luxury cruise ships in New Zealand and Australian waters, Asia, USA and Canada. Nadia started her teaching career while studying at music college. Since then, teaching has always been an important part of her professional path. In 2009, Nadia moved to New York where she successfully continued concert activity with the Dolce Vita string quartet. Today, she is working as a private music educator and an independent contractor with different orchestras including the Manhattan Chamber Orchestra, Lehman College Symphony Orchestra and Manhattan Camerata.
Angela Manso (piano) has served as musical director/pianist for over forty operas and musical theater productions, including twenty for New York's Bel Canto Opera Company. She served as assistant conductor for the Carnegie Hall performance of Mrs. H. H. A. Beach's Grand Mass in E Flat Major, a work that was subsequently recorded on the Newport Classics label. Ms. Manso was the official accompanist for the first World Harmonica Championship on the Isle of Jersey, U.K., during which she performed in recital with harmonica virtuoso Cham-Ber Huang, and she accompanied internationally renowned artist Larry Adler and Mr. Huang performing the Bach Double Violin Concerto arranged for two harmonicas. Also a composer, Ms. Manso's Abdu'l-Baha's Prayer for New York City was recorded by Roya Bauman, soprano and Linda Head, pianist, on Roya Bauman's CD, Fruits of the Tree of Life, and can be found on CDBaby. Her Prayer for Mankind was performed by the Central City Chorus with Director Mr. Charles Pilling and organist Harry Huff. Women Singing, a women's choir directed by Phyllis Clark, performed O Son of Spirit!. The Celestial Tree was performed by Monica Jalili, soprano and Angela Manso, pianist, at the Festival of the Arts presented by Global Music on June 29, 2002 in New York City. Ms. Manso has appeared on WQXR and WBAI radio, and has performed in master classes with Robert Casadesus, Grant Johannessen, Dalton Baldwin, and Walter Robert. A piano performanve major with a minor in organ and harpsichord at Illinois Wesleyan University, she has pursued additional piano study at the Fountainebleau Conservatory in France, The Juilliard School, and graduate choral conducting studies at Westminster Choir College. She has taught at New York University, New York School of Music, Henry Street Settlement, and the Newark School of the Arts from 1986 – 1996, where she served as head of the piano department for five years.
Inez McClendon (Voice, Drama) B.A. and M.A. in Music Education from Montclair State College and a M.A in speech and theatre from Montclair State University. Ms. McClendon is a music and drama instructor for the Boys' and Girls' Clubs of America Summer program, choral director of the South Side (now Shabazz) High School Alumni Chorus, choral director/organist for the Male Chorus of First Hopewell Baptist Church, Newark, NJ, and music affiliate/drama instructor for the St. John Baptist Church. Ms. McClendon shares the spotlight as one-third of the musical/dramatic aggregation known as the Talent-In-Triplicate, and she is the star of the traveling one-woman show of dramatic renditions entitled, "The Many Faces of Inez". Past credits include numerous radio and television performances & lectures, nationwide & European tours in churches, schools, colleges, and concert halls.
Susan Morehead (Voice, Chorus, Orff) Ms. Morehead holds a B.A. degree from Rutgers University, M.A. degree from Jersey City State College, and pursued studies at the Academy of Vocal Arts, in Philadelphia, and New York University. She has appeared in numerous operatic roles performing with the Festival Chorus of New Jersey, the Masterwork Chorus and Orchestra, Orpheus Chamber Singers, the Plainfield Symphony, Ars Musica Antiqua, the Garden State Chorale, the State Repertory Opera, Jersey Lyric Opera, Choral Baccarelli (Sao Paulo, Brazil), the Academy of Vocal Arts Opera Theatre (Philadelphia, PA), Montclair Chamber Orchestra, and numerous others. In 1989, she was the award-winning collaborator along with composer Loretta Jankowski, of a song cycle entitled Phoenix, published internationally by Boosey & Hawkes, in December 1993. . Under auspices of the United States Embassy, Ms. Morehead toured Brazil. She is a recipient of several Lila Wallace/Reader's Digest Incentive Grants, for performance and research. She is a member of the New York Singing Teacher's Association and is also a composer of children=s songs. Her voice teachers and coaches include Franco Rossi-Roudett, Terrence Shook, Helen Fenstermacher, Chloe Owens, Daniel Ferro, Marlena Malas, Dorothea Discala, Frank Valentino, Deborah Taylor, and Dolores Cassinelli. She has appeared in master classes with Elly Amelling, Jerome Hines, Judith Raskin, and Daltin Baldwin.
Thomas Price (Percussion) B.A., Shaw University. Mr. Price has studied composition and arranging at the Berkeley School of Music and was on the music faculty in the Newark public schools. He has performed at the Newport Jazz Festival, the Village Vanguard and Top of the Gate and has recorded for E.S.P. label. Mr. Price is also a certified special education teacher.
Dr. Amneris Puscasu (Violin) serves on the violin faculty at Rugers University Extension Division, Newark School of the Arts and Marymount School. She holds degrees from Mannes College of Music of Music (M.M., P.A.D.) and Rutgers University (D.M.A.). She has performed solo, chamber music and orchestral concerts both in United States (Weill Recital Hall, New Jersey Performing Arts Center, Alice Tully Hall, and Merkin Hall among others) and abroad, as well as been a member of several orchestras including Hartford Symphony, Albany Symphony and "George Enesco" Philharmonic. Currently she is a member of the New England Symphonic Ensemble which presents concerts at Carnegie Hall - Isaac Stern Hall on a regular basis. She has participated in numerous festivals including Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, Rome Festival, Mozarteum Hochschule für Musik in Salzburg, Austria and Utah Festival among others, and in masterclasses given by Guarneri String Quartet, Orion String Quartet, Colorado String Quartet, Miro Quartet, Arnold Steinhardt, Daniel and Todd Phillips, and Lewis Kaplan. She has played with such conductors as Christoph Eschenbach, Rossen Milanov, Phillipe Entremont, Kurt Masur, Sergiu Comissiona, Michael Tilson Thomas, Donald Runnicles, and John Rutter. She is the recipient of several awards and fellowships and she has been a judicator for the annual Young Artist Talent Search Jeffrey Carollo Scholarship Auditions at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center. Dr. Puscasu's professional organization affiliations include American String Teachers Association and The College Music Society.
Erin Rivers (Violin) was born in Newark, New Jersey and studied violin at Newark School of the Arts from age 5-17. She then went on to obtain a B.A. in communications from Clark Atlanta University in Atlanta. Georgia. While there she joined the Atlanta University Center orchestra in which she held 1st chair. Erin has performed many solo and chamber recitals in concert halls such as NJPAC, Alice Tully Hall, and Carnegie Hall to name a few. She has also graced the stage with artist such as Wyclef Jean and Eric Clapton.
Carmen Santos-Robson (Offsite Chorus) is a graduate of New England Conservatory of Music in Boston where she earned a Bachelor of Music and a Master of Music Degree in vocal pedagogy. She has sung at the Boston Lyric Opera and was the National Anthem singer for the Red Sox, Bruins, and Patriots sports teams. Ms. Santos has performed at the Tanglewood Music Institute in Lenox, MA where she was a student for two summers and has traveled through Asia where she performed with the New England Conservatory Symphony Orchestra. Carmen is a certified Music Together teacher and a Lango instructor, has been teaching young children for over three years and has been conducting children’s choirs at Gregory School Elementary in West Orange.
Megumi Saruhashi (Violin) is a graduate of the City College of New York with a degree in BFA Jazz Performance. In addition to playing violin she has studied classical piano for thirteen years. She has a passion for both teaching and performing. She has been learning a violin method derived from Alexisander technique. She has appeared on WBAI radio, off-Broadway musicals, Big Band, and currently plays with her band in various venues and gospel churches in New York City.
Ron Scott (Trumpet, Clarinet, Saxophone, Recorder) B.A, and Masters Degree in Music Education from New Jersey City University and a Masters Degree in Educational Leadership, Supervision and Administration from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Currently, Ron teaches instrumental music and band in the New Jersey Public School System. A veteran of big bands, Latin and Jazz groups also Classical Orchestras throughout his professional career, Ron has toured with the Doo-Wop production The Big Show and performs regularly with The Ray Abrams Big Band, The Somerset Jazz Consortium, The Metropolitan Italian Festival Band, The New Jersey Workshop for the Arts Concert Band and R&B/Funk groups in and around the tri-state area.
Stephen Starkman (Violin/Viola) began his career with a Carnegie Hall debut at age 10. Violin studies followed at Julliard and Indiana University with renowned pedagogues Ivan, Galamian, Josef Gingold and Nathan Milstein. After earning a Bachelors and Masters degree in addition to many national awards for outstanding performances, he embarked on a 16-year tenure with the Pittsburgh Symphony. During his tenure he collaborated with many of the world's great conductors including Previn, Bernstein, Maazel, Michael Tilson Thomas as well as all the great soloists of the day. Mr. Starkman established the first collaborative chamber music series in Pittsburgh (1984-1996) using symphony and freelance musicians. He served a music director of the Edgewood Symphony (1988-1992), and has guest conducted extensively. He has also been a violin soloist with more than a dozen orchestras nationwide. Mr. Starkman has served on several prestigious faculties including Ohio University (Athens), Rhode Island Youth Orchestras, Music Conservatory of Westchester, and has been a distinguished judge for the Julliard pre-college string competitions.
Jessica J. Walker (Piano, Organ, Voice) attended Columbia University, Westminster Choir College and received a Doctoral Degree in Religious/Church Music from Miller University, pursuing studies in piano, organ, voice and accompaniment. She maintains an active career throughout the New York/New Jersey Metropolitan area as a pianist, accompanist, music and choral director. Jessica is at present the Coordinator and Director of the "Candlelight Series," Director of Music at Mt. Carmel Presbyterian Church in Somerset, New Jersey and a staff accompanist at Newark School of the Arts. She is a music consultant throughout New Jersey, New York and Boston.
VISUAL ARTS FACULTY
Beatrice East (Visual Arts) B.A. at Kean College of New Jersey and completed her Master in Fiber Arts at Montclair State University. Ms. East is coordinator of the Visual Arts Department of NSA. She has taught at the Newark Museum for over eleven years, in the Newark Public School system for twenty-five years and is currently employed by the East Orange School District and Montclair State University. She received many years of training under an Artist in Residence program for New Jersey State Council of the Arts/Artist Teacher Institute. Many of her works reflect her travels to Senegal, Gambia, Ghana, Kenya and Egypt. Her works are part of a collection of Carol Martin, formerly of Channel 2 News, Montclair State Graduate office and other public institutions.
Marilyn Lobos (Offsite Visual Arts Instruction) received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design from Rutgers University, Newark, NJ. Ms. Lobos is a photographer and enjoys experimenting with filming and editing. She has had many experiences working with children as a Summer Youth counselor and, more recently, as the Summer Youth Director at the YMCA of Passaic, NJ. She believes in the power of the arts to empower students academically and socially.
Grace Marquinhos (Visual Arts Chair) has a BFA in Fine Arts and a teaching certification from Rutgers University in Newark, NJ. Since graduation, I've exhibited state-wide and currently in New York City with shows of my own work, which include paintings and sculpture. My sculpture pieces were inspired by artist George Segal, who also does life casting with plaster. Besides sculpture and painting, I am also a photographer, model, and costume designer/maker. I have assisted in painting murals in Newark as well as become involved in arts organizations and charities throughout New Jersey.
Armisey Smith (Art Gallery Curator) A native of Brooklyn, New York, received her BFA in Illustration from Parsons School of Design and a MPS in Arts and Cultural Management from Pratt Institute where she received a graduate scholarship for academic achievement. Currently, Ms. Smith works for the Newark Arts Council, facilitating arts in education initiatives such as the AIR, Artist-In-Residency Program, assist in the coordination efforts of the Arts in Education Roundtable and Strategic Planning process and manage ArtStart grants. Ms. Smith's professional experience includes working at STUDIO in a School (SIAS), as Director of Special Programs; administering in-depth, 14-week artist-in residency programs in New York City Schools. Prior to her time at SIAS, Ms. Smith was employed at the Hetrick-Martin Institute for a period of nine years. Her most rewarding experience at HMI entailed developing a grant proposal for the New York State Department of Health/AIDS Institute that awarded HMI $300,000 to develop an HIV arts prevention program. Ms. Smith also freelances as graphic designer/illustrator for various for-profit, non-profit and civic organizations. Her training provided by Parsons School of Design, one of the premier design schools in the country, imbued her with the foundation to work through challenges and still produce an exceptional product. Her painting practice supports the authenticity and vigor in the work she does every day. In 2010, she was accepted into the Leadership Newark, a two-year fellowship program for qualified professionals committed to the Greater Newark community. Ms. Smith relishes her dual role as an artist and arts manager. It has allowed her various opportunities to interact with dynamic people in her professional life and also impart her knowledge and skills to improve arts education opportunities for youths and families. Ms. Smith lives in the Forest Hill section of Newark.
Hiram Smith (Digital Photography and Cartooning) A native of Brooklyn NY, received his BFA in Illustration at Parsons School of Design. From there, he went into several freelance jobs designing company logos, greeting cards and character designs. He has taught grades K-5 visual arts with the NYC Board of Education.