Jason Belanger is a sophomore at Hofstra University from Fayetteville, NY with a dual major in Drama and Psychology and minors in Musical Theatre and Math. At Hofstra, he is a part of both the Chorale and Chamber Choir and is studying voice and piano privately. He has had twelve years of private piano training and nine years of private voice training, along with three years of formal theory training. He is also the recipient of a 2014 National School Choral Award, as well as an Eagle Scout and a National Merit Scholarship recipient.
His main style is musical theatre, as he’s performed in numerous shows (mostly on stage, but also in the pit on piano) and has served as an Associate Music Director on multiple productions. He also has a strong classical background, however; he has participated in the New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) solo festival on both voice and piano for many years, culminating in a trip to Conference All-State for Mixed Choir in December of 2013.
Along with his musical experience, he also has a solid background of teaching and tutoring. He has tutored both music theory and mathematics at the high school level for three years, as well as teaching voice classes for young students at the Redhouse Arts Center in Syracuse, NY. He enjoys working with all levels of students and has a passion for music and sharing the joy of it with others.
Orhan Cam from North Babylon, Long Island is a freshman attending Hofstra University currently studying with Alexander Sharpe. He is studying for a BS degree and later on a PhD in Violin Performance and composition.
Ever since Orhan was a young boy, his musical side had always showed. First by starting on the piano at three years old. Later down the road, he had picked up the violin. He had loved the violin from the start and excelled greatly at it, becoming apart of small local youth orchestras. Upon entering grade school, he had always been the concertmaster for every concert all the way through high school. Learning more and more string instruments along the way as well as singing as much as possible as a soloist in his high school choir, vocal jazz group and acapella group “The Babylon sound”.
He had gotten tired of his usual simple routine in a public school orchestra and joined various orchestras such as first violin for the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra, as well as a first violin for the Gemini Youth Orchestra, Juilliard pre-college and lessons under Juilliard staff, and even becoming the concertmaster for the Dowling College Orchestra for three years. He had performed in venues including: Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Symphony Space and even the New York City subways.
While juggling these orchestras he had found time to perform for gigs including; weddings, parties, and even learning jazz and performing in various jazz clubs across New York with two musical colleagues and friends under the name “Basically Sax and Violince”. He has also attended a Counterpoint in Italy and Ireland as a featured soloist and quartet leader for modern classical and contemporary performances and compositions in 2013. He has written many works under a classical genre, as well as minimalism and electronic. He has taught many ages, levels and instruments, and encourages students to excel not only skillfully with their instrument but also musically.
Andrew Krahm is going into his Senior year of Music Education at LIU Post with a concentration in Violin studies, with a secondary focus on saxophone playing, classical and jazz alike. The violin and saxophone has been performed for over a decade each. Krahm has already toured with LIU Ensembles abroad on two separate tours. As a soloist, Krahm has already performed repertoire for a junior recital and is under going the process for preparing a set of music for a senior recital. As Krahm prepares to enter the student teaching process, he has become an aspiring conductor and had the opportunity to conduct the LIU Post Youth Camps, Performing Arts Academy Orchestra.
During his time at LIU, Andrew has been coached by Wynton Marsalis, members of Kronos String Quartet, Shanghai String Quartet, Sybarite-5 and many other musicians that have already excelled in their respective domains. Krahm has studied under the violin studio of Dr. Dale Stuckenbruck, saxophone studios of Dr. Tim Ruedeman and T.K Blue. He recently began to privately study conducting under the tutelage of Dr. James McRoy.
In his spare time, Krahm is an active member of the Rockville Centre Fire Department and is soon to be a Lieutenant of his company. He has been an active instructor in Chinese Gojo for several years as a second degree black belt.
Carl Millard was born and raised in Rocky Point, New York and began playing the violin at the age of nine. From a young age, his love for music began to flourish when he listened to many great orchestral works of composers such as Beethoven and Mendelssohn. He has experience performing in several scenarios including Symphony Orchestras, Pit Orchestras, wedding groups, solo and more. Carl has a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education and is currently pursuing a Master's Degree in Performance at the same college. He has experience teaching at William Floyd Elementary School and has been giving private lessons to students of all ages for several years.
Tom began playing double and electric bass when he was 11 years old. He became extremely active in his middle school and high school (principal bassist 11th/12th grade) orchestras. Outside of school, Tom was also selected to participate in regional orchestras such as the Suffolk County Music Educators’ Association Orchestra (SCMEA), the Long Island String Festival Association Orchestra (LISFA), the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra-Principal Orchestra (principal bassist), and the extremely competitive New York State Summer School for the Arts-School of Orchestral Studies.
Tom graduated from the University of Delaware in May of 2014 where he majored in Music and Music Management with a concentration in Double Bass and a minor in Economics. He studied bass and took lessons with Mr. Craig Thomas, a decorated jazz musician who has played with luminaries such as Frank Sinatra, Buddy Rich, and Mel Lewis. At UD, Tom had the opportunity to play in various ensembles such as the UD Symphony Orchestra (principal bass for 3 years), Jazz Big Band Ensemble, Jazz Chamber Ensemble, Chamber Orchestra, and Opera Orchestra to name a few. His Jazz Quintet, Groove Society, was constantly in demand for playing receptions, cocktail hours, and restaurants in northern Delaware. He has played everywhere from Carnegie Hall in New York, to the Dover Downs Casino in Dover, Delaware, to La Catedral de Sal in Zipaquirá, Colombia. Tom has experience teaching students in Elementary, Middle, and High School levels.
Tom currently lives on Long Island and works for a music publishing company in downtown Manhattan.
Matt Hart is a current Music Education student at the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College. He has been playing trumpet for the past 12 years. He was a principal trumpet player throughout grade school and holds the position in the Symphonic Wind Ensemble in college. He has been involved in music festivals since middle school performing in SCMEA Division 1 and 3, as well as SCMEA Jazz Day.
He has been a clinician at SCMEA Jazz Day (2015) and has assisted conductors for the past two years at the MEANYC Middle and High School Festivals. He is held in high regard by board members of both organizations.
He is the current president of the schools National Association for Music Education (NAfME) Chapter. He also is the manager of the Aaron Copland School of Music Performance Library as well as personal librarian for the Orchestra (Fall 2016) and Assistant Librarian to the Symphonic Wind Ensemble. Matt has performed with almost every ensemble at the college including, but not limited to, Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Queens College Orchestra, Queens College Big Band, Brass Ensemble and Chamber Orchestra. He has had the opportunity as an undergraduate student to record an album with the Queens College Big Band that can be found on Spotify and iTunes.
He currently holds the position of Orchestra Stage Manager for the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra and Music School Festival Orchestra at the Chautauqua Institution Amphitheater for the 2016 summer season.
As the son of a music educator, his father has been teaching general music and choral studies from K-Collegiate for 25 years, Matt has a deep understanding of what a supportive music environment is and is always eager to share his passion with his students and peers.
Daniel Maguire is currently completing a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Composition with a Guitar Performance concentration from Hofstra University. Daniel has been studying guitar since age 14 and has performed in a number of jazz, rock, and classical ensembles. He is also a percussionist and singer, and is currently involved in the Hofstra University Chamber Singers and Percussion Ensemble. His compositions have been performed by a number of large and chamber ensembles, including the Hofstra Symphony Orchestra.
As a guitarist, Daniel has received several awards, including the Rhoda Pinsley Levin Endowed Award for Excellence in Musical Performance and the Woody Herman Jazz Award for Outstanding Leadership. He has performed with a number of ensembles, including the Hofstra University Guitar Ensemble; in several bands throughout the northeast; and as a soloist, performing traditional classical works by composers such as Britten and Villa-Lobos, as well as several original works.
Vincent Melia began playing double bass in 4th grade at Manetuck Elementary School in West Islip, New York. During his grade school years, he participated in NYSSMA, the Suffolk County Music Educators Association festival, and the Long Island String Festival numerous times. During his senior year of high school, he had the privilege of attending the NYSSMA All State festival and also was the principal bassist of the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra.
Vincent is currently going into his junior year at SUNY Fredonia where he is pursuing a Bachelor of Music in Music Education. He is a member of the Fredonia College Symphony Orchestra and was the principal of the orchestra during the 2014 spring semester. He also was invited to play in the Chamber Orchestra for both semesters of his sophomore year.
Vincent has taught private students in hopes of sparking their interest in music. He has advanced proficiency on the violin and viola and is also proficient on the cello. His private instructor was his greatest influence and he hopes that he can someday be looked up to by his students and peers the same way that he looks up to his teachers.
Randolph started playing trumpet in 4th grade at P.S. 15 in New York. He began on piano and moved to trumpet as soon as he heard the concert band in his Elementary School. Later, he attended Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School for Music and Art in Manhattan while still playing in the Q5 Youth Jazz Band. The Q5 Youth Jazz Band was a jazz combo formed by a group of 5 Junior High School students that just wanted to play more! They were based in Saint Albans, Queens and played at local community events and performed annually at the St. Albans Jazz Festival.
Randolph Smith also attended Juilliard’s Music Advancement Program (MAP) where he participated in and studied classical music, jazz, stage presence, chorus, theory and brass ensemble. In High School, Randolph was busy with New York City’s All City Concert Band, New York Youth Symphony’s Jazz Band Classic, pit orchestra, and volunteer work with young children at the Montessori Progressive Learning Center. He soon attended Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music where he participated in the Marching Hundred, David Baker’s Jazz Band, jazz combo, orchestra and the Soul Revue Ensemble. During the summers, Randolph was a CIT (Counselor in Training) at Hartwick College Summer Music Festival & Institute in Oneonta, NY, worked at Montessori Progressive and also taught group lessons at Joe’s Music and Dance Academy.
Most recently, after graduating Indiana University with a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies in 2011, he completed 4 contracts with Carnival Cruise Lines as a Show Band musician. While on the seas and traveling, Randolph played for the ship’s production shows, dance sets and jazz sets. He is now completing his Master of Science in Music Education at Long Island University Post in Brookville, NY. In addition to performing and teaching music, he is also pursuing a career in voice acting and voiceovers.
Matt Nobile currently holds a BM in Music Education from C.W. Post's School of Visual and Performing Arts with a concentration in percussion performance. His main percussion instrument is timpani, but has experience preforming on marimba and drum set. During his time at C.W. Post, Matt has performed in numerous ensembles, including Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble as his mine ensembles. He also had appearances in the C.W. Post Orchestra, Percussion Ensemble, Jazz Ensemble, and Chorus. With the Symphonic Band and Chorus, Matt and the rest of the ensemble have performed at Carnegie Hall in 2011 and 2012.
Outside of the university, Matt has performed with the DCA drum and bugle corps. The Long Island Sunrisers in 2013, as well as the WGI indoor marching percussion ensemble, Rage in 2006 and 2012. Aside from his performance, Matt has worked with numerous high school marching band on Long Island, including Mineola High School, Longwood High School, and Division Avenue High School. His main school Division Avenue, works as the front ensemble arranger and instructor for their competitive season.
James Hein is from Smithtown, Long Island. He began playing double/electric bass at the age of 10 and has been very active in the music community since middle school. He has held principle and assistant principle honors in both middle school and high school orchestras, as well as many outside orchestras/festivals. These include the Long Island String Festival Association (LISFA), the Suffolk County Music Educators' Association (SCMEA), The New York State Summer School for the Arts (NYSSSA) School of Orchestral Studies, and the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra's Principle Orchestra. James was also the bassist of his high school jazz band for multiple years.
James graduated from the University of Maryland in 2014 with a Bachelor of Music Education. While at Maryland, he studied bass under Robert Oppelt, the principle bassist for the National Symphony Orchestra. He performed in the University Symphony Orchestra (UMSO) and has performed in many venues such as Carnegie Hall, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and Lincoln Center. James currently teaches elementary music in the Three Village School District as well as private bass instruction.
Although Matt’s first instrument was the alto saxophone, his passion for music was ignited when he began to play the guitar at age 12. Initially inspired by rock music, Matt, under the guidance of his first private instructor, soon gravitated toward playing jazz. Years later, this brought him to Berklee College of Music in Boston, where he earned his Bachelor of Music degree in Jazz Composition in 2013. At Berklee, Matt had the opportunity to study with some of the world’s most innovative and sought after jazz guitarists, including David Gilmore and David Fiuczynski. He also honed his skills as a composer and arranger, writing for big bands as well as smaller groups and solo performances. Matt has performed as a guitarist throughout the New York and Boston metro areas with various jazz, funk, R&B, rock, and pop groups. Since 2010, he has taught private lessons in guitar, piano, bass guitar, woodwinds, drums, and music theory/composition. Currently, Matt is in the process of earning his Master of Arts degree in Music Education at Hunter College.
Victoria Astuto graduated from the University of Northern Colorado in May 2015 with a Master of Music Performance in Clarinet. She was a Graduate Teaching Assistant for Dr. Lauren Jacobson where she taught 15 undergraduate clarinet students weekly and private students in Greeley, Colorado. In 2013, she graduated with a Bachelor in Music Education from the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam.
After graduating from the University of Northern Colorado in 2015, Victoria started her job as a Woodwind teaching artist for El Sistema Denver where she taught middle school students flute, clarinet, bass clarinet and saxophone. Later that year, she taught 6th grade Social Studies and English at Prairie Heights Middle School in Greeley, CO.
The past two summers Victoria has attended three music festivals in Wisconsin, Luxembourg and Philadelphia. She was able to study with members of the Chicago Opera, Philadelphia Orchestra, and Los Angeles Philharmonic.
Although the majority of her training is in clarinet, Victoria started playing flute in 4th grade and began learning saxophone, bass clarinet and clarinet in high school. She has taught all levels of woodwinds instruments from elementary to college.
Currently, Victoria resides in West Islip, NY and is actively playing and taking professional auditions for orchestras and bands.
Dian Torres is a recent graduate from Five Towns College where she received her bachelors in music education, with a concentration in voice. Dian is an advanced pianist and vocalist. She began studying both instruments at the age of 14. Dian has performed with various vocal groups through out her school career, including select choirs and select barbershop groups, as well as solo voice recitals. Dian began teaching private piano and voice lessons at the age of 21, where she has had the opportunity to work with students of all ages and of all music levels. Dian has also worked with small and large groups of students during her student teaching in the West Islip school district, where she taught general music k-5, and various high school vocal ensembles. During her stay in the West Islip school district Dian conducted two vocal groups for their spring concert. Dian loves working with all students and finds true passion through teaching music.
From age three Karina Aristy's love for the violin began when her parents would take her to the NY Virtuosi concerts held at Westbury High School. She was fascinated by the way the concertmaster would play with such emotion. From then on she knew she wanted to be like that violinist. At age 9 she began to play the violin at Drexel Avenue School. Throughout the years she excelled within the performing groups and was given the title of Concert Mistress from grade 7 through grade 12. During her high school years she was a member of Gemini Youth Orchestras, All County Orchestras, USDAN's Orchestra IV, and participating in various school musicals. She graduated Westbury High School in June 2011 and is continuing her degree in musical education at LIU Post. She is a student of Anton Polezhayev and studies the violin at LIU with Professor Dr. Dale Stuckenbruck.
Meet Our Teachers:
Jamie Ehrenfeld is a music educator residing in Ridgewood, Queens. She
teaches vocal music at Eagle Academy for Young Men in Brownsville,
Brooklyn and leads a youth centered artist development lab with New
York University's Music Experience Design Lab called the Ed Sullivan
Fellows Program. She also mentors City As School's Music, Design, and
Art (MAD) Academy students. She graduated from NYU in 2014, is skilled
in both classical and popular singing, and offers student centered
lessons in voice, songwriting, basic music theory, and introductory
Raised in Thailand, Jadakorn "Jay" Thawornpradit began his classical training in piano at the age of 5, by age 9 his love for piano flourished as he began to perform in recitals. He is musically certified by Trinity Guildhall through Trinity College in London with a level 6 certification in Piano performance. Jay graduated Five Towns College on Long Island in 2013 with a Bachelor degree of Music Education. He has worked as a student teacher, taught general music, conducted choirs and various ensembles in May Moore Primary, JFK intermediate, and Robert Frost Middle School. Jay has studied piano under Vincent Loccisano of New York University, one of Kenny Werner's students and protoge'. He has also studied Master courses in Jazz arts under Greg Bobulinski, who has tremendous experiences working with world class groups of musicians, such as Clark Terry's Big Band and Red Garland's Quintet. Jay has performed in many settings such as big bands, choirs, jazz groups, weddings, accompaniments, and solo performances.
Jay is experienced in preparing students for NYSSMA. He promotes and encourages students' individualism through his music teaching. His methods aim to invite students to know and love their instruments while learning how to play their instruments with efficiency. He has worked with students of all ages and aspires to preserve the art of jazz while exploring new musical frontiers.
Originally from Massapequa Park, NY, Timothy Diovanni now studies at Columbia University where he is pursuing a B.A. in Music. While at Massapequa High School, Timothy participated in the All-County, All-State, All-Eastern, and All-National music festivals. Also, Timothy has participated in the LIU Post Chamber Music Festival as well as the New York State Summer School for the Arts. In the summer of 2015, Timothy will attend the Aria International Summer Academy as a Richard and Brooke Kamin Rapaport Summer Music Performance Fellow.
Timothy believes in the importance of giving back to the community through music. He has participated in organizations such as "Piano for Patients," "Playback," and the Oyster Bay Community Band, which play for students, senior citizens, and community members.
An avid chamber musician, Timothy performs in several chamber music groups at Columbia University. He also plays in the pit orchestras for Columbia University's theater productions as well as in the university's orchestral groups. In addition to playing clarinet, Timothy sings bass-baritone and composes music, having studied composition with Dr. Herbert Deutsch while in high school.
Being surrounded by music his entire life, Michael has always had an affinity for all different types of music, ranging from classical to broadway. After becoming profoundly moved while hearing a violinist play at Church, he begged for a violin and lessons. Then, receiving his first violin as a Christmas present, he immediately began lessons and this quickly became his passion. Developing quickly, Michael became concertmaster of the Gemini Youth Orchestra (Philharmonia) during his first year participating. Soon after Gemini, Michael began lessons with Juilliard Alumni Yonitte Ryger and has been working intensively with her (twice a week) ever since. After Gemini, Michael participated in The Children's Orchestra Society for two years, conducted by Michael Dadap and run by Dr. Yeou-Cheng Ma. While with "COS", he had performed with talents such as Placido Domingo Jr., Sirena Huang, The American Ballet Theater, etc., and at venues ranging from Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center to the United Nations Headquarters in Manhattan.
Throughout summers while still taking lessons, Michael has participated in festivals such as LIU Post Chamber Music Festival, the Summit International Music Festival studying with talents such as the violist of the Amernet String Quartet and the concermaster of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, and the NYACK Music Festival studying with a teacher from Manhattan School of Music. After graduating High School, Michael took a year off to study extensively and prepare for auditions to music conservatories such as Manhattan School of Music, The Peabody Institute of Music at John's Hopkins University, and The Hartt School of Music. After being accepted to all three conservatories as well as two others, Michael will be attending Manhattan School of Music in the fall.
Throughout attending festivals and working with orchestras, Michael has worked with students from all around the world and has taken lessons with teachers from Juilliard, Manhattan School of Music, Mannes School of Music, and The Peabody Institute. Michael has studied most of the standard Violin repertoire and is very familiar with what techniques and pieces will help best in each individual students development! Michael is open to any and all kinds of students, and would love the opportunity to work with them!
Victoria Kavitt graduated Summa Cum Laude from the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam in May 2015 with a BM in Music Education, Minor in Spanish and Concentrations in Music in Special Education and Horn Performance. During Victoria’s time at Crane she studied under Kelly Drifmeyer and Caroline Steiger and performed in many ensembles such as the Crane Symphony Orchestra, Crane Wind Ensemble, Crane Brass Ensemble, Crane Horn Choir and many other chamber ensembles. Her recent performance experiences include 4th horn in the Orchestra of Northern New York, 3rd and 4th horn in Northern Symphonic Winds and the North Shore Pops Orchestra.
Although Victoria is primarily a horn player, she began her musical studies in elementary school on flute and has studied voice under Megan O’Brien. In addition to flute, voice and horn she also has experience teaching trumpet, trombone, euphonium, tuba, and clarinet. She is extremely passionate about music education and is grateful that as a music educator she has the opportunity to share music with her students.
Danae Sciolino was born and raised in Buffalo, NY. She attended SUNY Fredonia where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education, with a secondary concentration in clarinet performance. During her time at Fredonia she studied under James East. Danae was the principal clarinetist of the College Symphony Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra, and Wind Ensemble. She received the music school’s highly regarded Performers Certificate for giving two successful recitals, judged by a panel of the faculty, and was chosen as a winner of their annual Concerto Competition in 2008. As a result of winning this competition, Danae was a featured soloist at a Wind Ensemble concert both on campus, and again while touring with the group in China that spring.
Danae moved to Long Island in 2009 where she began teaching private music lessons, and working on her Master’s degree at SUNY Stony Brook. She received her Master’s in Liberal Arts with a music concentration in 2013. She is currently teaching 4th grade band in the William Floyd School District and up until recently was a member of the Dowling College and Community Orchestra.
Danae uses an adaptive teaching style to meet the needs of her students. Every student is an individual and may learn differently than the next. She uses different strategies to determine what works best for each student. By doing so they will be able to reach their fullest potential by learning in the way that feels most natural to them.
Billy Ruvolo started playing the guitar at the age of 10. His passion and love for the guitar, as well as music, has allowed him to become a versatile guitarist and musician, and to be successful in many different styles of music including classical, jazz, blues, rock and many more. Billy received a B.S in Music from LIU Post. He had the honor of studying under the tutelage of Harris Becker and Mark Marino. He also had to opportunity to perform with the LIU Post Chamber Singers under the direction of Dr. Mark Shapiro, and the LIU Post Guitar Ensemble directed by Harris Becker. He is also a member of the Sonic Pioneers Jazz Combo under the direction of jazz instructor and artist Matt Wilson. During his time performing with these groups, Billy performed multiple times in Carnegie Hall with the choir. Billy also had the opportunity to travel to countries such as Costa Rica and Ireland where he performed on the guitar and sang in choirs. In addition to being a member of these performing groups, Billy has also been a member of multiple rock bands over the years, currently a member of the band One Day At A Time, a band who is gaining popularity in the Long Island music scene. Billy hopes to one day become a music teacher, and inspire his own students to reach their potential and appreciate music just as he does.