Elena Alamilla, B.M. ’73, cellist, was appointed Assistant Principal of the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic after graduation. Since returning to the United States Alamilla has performed with many local orchestras, including Naples Philharmonic, Miami Symphony and Symphony of the Americas.
Sally K. Albrecht, M.M. '79, is the Director of School Choral & Classroom Publications for Alfred Music Publishing Co., Inc., a position she has held for 22 years. She currently has over 325 popular choral publications in print and over 50 larger works, including musicals, songbooks, and cantatas.
Dean W. Anderson, B.M. '72 is a percussionist with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Boston Pops Orchestra, Cantata Singers Orchestra, Boston Music Viva, and the Boston Lyric Opera. He is also a professor at Berklee College of Music.
Steve Bailey, B.M. '84, bassist, is serving as chair of the bass department at Berklee College of Music. Bailey is famous for his pioneering work with the six string fretless bass.
David Bebe, D.M.A. '09, cellist, is a faculty member at the College of Saint Rose where he serves as the director of the Saint Rose String Program, conductor of the Saint Rose Orchestra, and cello Instructor. He has served on faculties of Indiana University String Academy and the String Academy of Wisconsin.
Susan Moyer Bergeron D.M.A. ’09 , cellist, has been a member of the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra since 2006. She performed as a member of the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra for 10 years. An active chamber musician, Bergeron has performed extensively in South Florida. She is a founding member of the Dalbergi Trio and has played for 12 summers with Chamber Music Palm Beach.
Ken Berry, B.M. '85 recently composed the theme and background music for the first season of Jerry Seinfeld’s Marriage Ref. He has written music for such television programs as Behind the Music, Survivor, Temptation Island, Joe Millionaire, Big Brother, My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiancé and Trading Spouses. He has won three BMI Awards for his work with Dave Vanacore Productions, and this spring he will be awarded two more for the theme for Undercover Boss and additional music for Out of the Wild.
Lindsey Blair, BM '80, MM '93 has worked as guitarist on the Don Francisco Presenta TV show on Univision for the past 9 years. He previously played with Gloria Estefan, Jon Secada, Maynard Ferguson, 2 Live Crew, Bobby Caldwell, Word of Mouth, Cheyenne, Raul Midon, Aurturo Sandoval, LeeAnn Womack, Les Hooper, Ed Calle, and Jeff Berlin. Blair majored in studio music and jazz.
Charles Mason, B.M. '77, is associate professor and chair of the Department of Theory and Composition at the University of Miami Frost School of Music, where he received the Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2009. He has received many awards for his compositions including the American Composers Orchestra “Playing it Unsafe” prize, the 2005 Rome Prize, the Premi Internacional de Composició Musical Ciutat de Tarragona Orchestra Music prize, and a National Endowment of the Arts Individual Artist Award.
Vicente Chavarria, B.A. '09, M.M. '11, serves as Director of the Gloria Dei Choir in La Habra, CA. He recently presented papers on Mexican Baroque music at international conferences in Santa Barbara and Mexico City.
Huifang Chen, M.M. ’05, violin, enjoys a dual career as a performer and educator. After receiving her B.M. from Curtis Institute and her M.M. degree from the Frost School of Music, she was named Director of Orchestra at Florida International University. She is currently serving on the violin faculty of the new World School of the Arts and, conductor of the Greater Miami Youth Symphony which performed in Carnegie Hall under her baton. She is also Concertmaster of the Ars Flores Symphony and a member of the Florida Grand Opera Orchestra.
Mark Colby, B.M. '72, M.M. '75 formerly with Maynard Ferguson, Bob James, Frank Sinatra, and Jaco Pastorius, has solo recordings on Columbia, Hallway, and Origin Records. He has toured Europe, Japan, Canada, Central America, China, and all 50 U.S. states. He has been associate professor of jazz saxophone at DePaul University since 1983 and Elmhurst College since 1998, a Selmer saxophone clinician since 1987, and a Vandoren Reeds clinician since 2000.
Sylvia Constantinidis, M.M. '93 and '08, is artistic director at Omorfia Contemporary Music Ensemble and Secco Southeast Contemporary Chamber Orchestra. She is a pianist, conductor, writer, music educator and composer. Throughout her career she has performed and conducted in Ukraine, England, Norway, Canada, Venezuela, Germany and Spain. She was elected new member of the Officers Council for the National Advisory Board of the National Association of Composers of the USA in December 2011 and has received numerous awards. Most recently, the American Society of Composers award for concert music in 2010 and 2009.
After receiving his D.M.A. degree from the Frost School of Music, Tomas Cotik, violin, became involved in six commercial CD recording projects, including Mendelssohn Viola Quintets with James Dunham, and the first volume of the complete works of Franz Schubert for violin and piano. He tours in the U.S. and Canada as a concerto soloist, and is Principal Second Violin of the Florida Grand Opera, and violinist of the Delray String Quartet.
Claire Courchene, B.M. ’07, multi-instrumentalist, recently played on three seasons of American Idol (cello and trombone), and appeared with P. Diddy on the Jimmy Kimmel Show. Courchene recorded the solo cello song “Eclipse” for the Twilight Breaking Dawn movie.
Wells Cunningham, B.M. ‘96, cellist, is the first cellist to win the University Miami’s concerto competition. Currently he serves as faculty at the Frost School of Music Young Musicans’ Camp. Upon graduation from Frost in 1996, he was invited to tour Europe as principal cellist and soloist with a nationally assembled orchestra. While in France, he performed the Elgar Cello Concerto.
Douglas J. Cuomo, B.M. '83 composes for concert and theatrical stages, television, and film. Recent concert music includes Black Diamond Express Train to Hell for the American Composers Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, Arjuna's Dilemma at the BAM Next Wave Festival, Only Breath at Ravinia, and others. Work for television and film include: themes for Sex and the City (HBO), NOW with Bill Moyers (PBS), and Wide Angle (PBS), and music for Homicide: Life on the Street (NBC).
Carolyn Dachinger, M.M. '11, is a board certified music therapist with experience working with a variety of populations, including adults with mental illness and substance use disorders, children and adults with developmental and/or neurological disorders and older adults in skilled nursing and assisted living facilities. She is currently working as a music therapist at Whole Steps Creative Arts Center in Miami Dade County. She was previously a music therapist at Master Musicians, Inc., a company that provides individual and group music therapy sessions to clients. She has volunteered for Covenant Hospice and interned at Florida State Hospital. While at the Frost School of Music, Dachinger was a graduate teaching assistant. She majored in music education.
Misha Dacić, B.M. '07, recently recorded an album titled Liszt: Piano Music for a Dutch record label. Listeners have said “this is one of the finest and most important recordings of Liszt's music ever made,” and “the engineering of this CD is absolutely first-rate.”
Steve Danyew, B.M. '06 was recently named the winner in the Brighton, MI Bands 75th Anniversary Wind Ensemble Fanfare Composition Competition for a fanfare based on his extended work Flash Back. The full version of Flash Black earned 3rd prize in the international wind ensemble composition contest held by Wegmans/Penfield Wind Ensemble in spring 2010. Daynew is currently busy composing new choral and wind ensemble music. He received his Master’s degree at the Eastman School of Music in May 2010 where he currently serves as editor for the website, Polyphonic On Campus. He majored in music composition at the Frost School of Music.
Nicholas D’Angiolillo, B.M. '08, received his bachelor’s of music degree in Music Business and Entertainment Industries from the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami, where he was awarded a Stamps Endowed Music Scholarship. D’Angiolillo is the Licensing Representative at Naxos of America, Inc., a leading classical music label with over 360,000 recorded music tracks that are licensed and streamed around the world.
Lauren Denney Wright, D.M.A. '10, is the Director of Wind Ensemble Activities at Berry College in Georgia. While teaching in the metro Atlanta, Ga., area, Denney Wright taught an active private studio consisting of more than 45 students. She also taught master classes throughout the metro Atlanta area. From 1999-2000, she performed studio work in Nashville, Tenn., for the movie "Ancient Evil" and background music for a live radio reading of "The Secret Garden."
Jennifer Doyle, M.M. ’09, Ph.D ’12, is a visiting assistant professor of music education at the University of Maryland School of Music where she teaches courses in instrumental music education and supervises student teachers. Her research areas include urban music education, music teacher education, culturally relevant teaching, affective assessment, and social justice through music education.
Jeremy Fox, D.M.A. '00, was recently selected to present a clinic at the 2012 International Jazz Education Network Conference in Kentucky, where he will present a clinic on Vocal Jazz Arranging to the members of the organization. Fox was also selected to be the Guest Conductor for the 2012 California All-State Vocal Jazz Group, which represents a group of 16 of the finest high school jazz singers in the state.
Gary Fry, B.M. '76 is the composer-in-residence for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Welcome, Yule! Christmas concerts. He had 11 works on last year's program, including premiere performances of his original Things We Do Each Christmas as well as his arrangements of Deck the Hall and Believe, and his adaptation and re-orchestration of William Henry Fry's Santa Claus Symphony (1853). He is also the artistic consultant and arranger for the Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s Christmas Celebration concerts. Fry's Christmas music was also performed by the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Colorado Symphony, the Seattle Symphony, and other orchestras this Christmas season.
Marie-Elaine Gagnon, D.M.A. '06, cellist, is an assistant professor of cello at the University of South Dakota, where she has played in the Rawlins Piano Trio since 2009. The Rawlins Piano Trio has distinguished itself as a leading American chamber music ensemble. Since its founding in 1987, it has given performances throughout the United States and abroad.
Ashley Garritston, D.M.A. '10, has served as principal cellist of the Chicago Civic Orchestra and is currently principal cello of the Miami Symphony where she performed the South Florida premiere of the Mark O’Connor Double Concerto with another Frost School graduate, Daniel Andai. She also serves as Artistic Director of the Monteverdi Festival of the Arts in Tuscany, Italy and is adjunct professor of Cello at Broward College in Davie, Florida. "Garritson plays with burnished tone and deep sensitivity." -The Miami Herald
Beth Gibbs, D.M.A. '10, in choral conducting, is assistant professor of music and director of choral studies at Florida Southern College in Lakeland, FL.
Jon Gilutin, B.M. '79, has released his first solo effort, When the Heart Speaks, including many solo piano pieces, instrumentals, and songs with guest vocalists. As a songwriter, he won a Grammy award for his song “New Attitude” from the Beverly Hills Cop soundtrack and has had many other songs recorded by great artists. He has also written music for countless national television commercials.
Andrea Green, B.M. '75 is a playwright, composer, lyricist, director and music therapist. She is nationally known for her work creating Broadway style musicals for children that entertain but also are vehicles for teaching tolerance. Her work is being performed on professional stages across the country as well as in educational settings. For 30 years, Andrea has partnered children from Germantown Friends School, with youngsters from the HMS School for Children with Cerebral Palsy, using her musicals to encourage communication, understanding and friendship.
Sara Duncan Grimes, M.M. '08, is assistant orchestra director at Walton High School in Marietta, Georgia. She has previously taught at Barber Middle School in Cobb County, Georgia and West Laboratory Elementary in Miami. While at the Frost School of Music, Grimes was a graduate teaching assistant and taught undergraduate string techniques. She majored in music education at the Frost School.
Gerhard Guter, B.M. '97, is a member of Vocalogy: Distilled. He has scored six short films, one of his orchestral film scores was featured at the Orpheum Theater for the 2004 Ovation Awards. His work has been aired on The History Channel and he has written music for the online gaming phenomenon World of Warcraft. He has taught commercial music and jazz courses as an adjunct instructor for California State University Long Beach & Cuesta, Riverside, Cypress, Fullerton Community Colleges in California.
T. Geoffrey Hale, B.M. '69, M.M. '70 is presently principal bassoon of the Miami Symphony Orchestra (MISO) and the Miami City Ballet Orchestra. As an educator, he has been Bassoon instructor at the New World School of the Arts in Miami for the past 11 years. He has taught privately for the past 43 years aiding his students to achieve scholarships at UM Frost School of Music, Cincinnati Conservatory, Julliard School of Music, New England Conservatory, and Florida State University. For the past 30 years, Hale has also been a member of, among others, the South Florida Symphony, Florida Chamber Orchestra, Miami Philharmonic, Miami Beach Symphony, and the Miami Chamber Orchestra.
Tara Hanish, M.M. ’04, cellist, is currently on faculty at the Cleveland Institute of Music Preparatory School and the Fairmount Center for the Arts. Hanish has been a member of the Akron Symphony Orchestra since she moved to Cleveland in 2004. She performs often with the Canton Symphony Orchestra, Erie Philharmonic and Suburban Symphony.
The Scottsboro Boys' Joshua Henry, B.M. '06 is on the road to becoming a leading man. Originally from Miami, FL, Henry is currently starring in The Scottsboro Boys as Haywood Patterson - a young African-American man falsely accused of raping a white woman in 1931 Alabama.
Maria Halloway, D.M.A. '03, was invited by the National Foundation for the Advancement in the Arts to participate as a collaborative pianist for YoungArts Week. She was invited to participate again in 2012, which was held at the New World Symphony venue in Miami Beach. In the summer of 2011, Holloway taught piano classes at the Greater Miami Youth Symphony summer camp. She performed Rachmaninoff second piano concerto with the El Salvador National Symphony Orchestra. Her piano playing was featured in the soundtrack of the documentary film "Portraits of the Malecon," which was shown at the MiamiDoc Film Festival.
John Holt, B.M ’81, M.M. ’85, John Holt is associate professor of trumpet and chair of the Division of Instrumental Studies at the University of North Texas. Holt is also principal trumpet with the Dallas Opera Orchestra, a position he has held since 1989. Holt has appeared as a soloist with orchestras throughout the United States and has commissioned, premiered and recorded numerous works since 2003. Trumpet Panoply, released in April 2011, is Holt’s seventh solo album recording with Crystal Records.
Bruce Hornsby, B.M. '97, is a 13-time Grammy nominee, has won three Grammys: 1987 “Best New Artist” for the debut album The Way It Is; 1989 “Best Bluegrass Recording” for his hit “The Valley Road” from the album Will The Circle Be Unbroken, Volume II; and with Branford Marsalis in 1993 for “Best Pop Instrumental Performance” for their song “Barcelona Mona,” written for the Barcelona Olympics. Hornsby’s latest nomination was in 2008 for “Is This America?” (Katrina 2005) with Charlie Haden, Pat Metheny, and Jerry Douglas.
Sam Howard, B.M. '03, lives in Portland, Oregon where he is very active playing sessions and shows on upright and electric bass and vocals. He has toured the world with Jazz at Lincoln Center's Rhythm Road program, and is currently touring with folk singer Ruth Moody (The Ruth Moody Band), The Tony Furtado Band, and the Nathaniel Talbot Quartet. He has released two instrumental solo albums with the Sam Howard Band, and is currently working on an album of original country songs to be released soon. Howard is a member of Americana chamber-pop band National Flower and plays with the electrifying guitarist Scott Pemberton.
Laurence Kaptain, M.M. '75 was named Dean of the LSU College of Music & Dramatic Arts in July 2009, where he also is the Penniman Family Professor of Music. Prior to joining LSU, Kaptain was the dean of the Shenandoah Conservatory of Shenandoah University in Kentucky. Prior to his appointment at Shenandoah, he was director of the Schwob School of Music in Georgia and vice-provost at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.
Bruce Kiesling, D.M.A. ‘06, recently conducted the Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles for 14,000 at the Hollywood Bowl, as they accompanied international Latin superstar, Juanes featuring his own arrangements for Juanes' hit songs. Kiesling also prepared the top YOLA orchestra for a joint performance and open rehearsal with Simon Rattle. He continues his side career as a film composer including the recently completed feature film "Desperate Acts of Magic" and the upcoming "Desires of the Heart," now shooting in India. Kiesling is Music Director of the Tulare County Symphony in California's central Valley, which has twice featured Frost School of Music faculty member, Richard Todd. Kiesling majored in instrumental conducting at the Frost School of Music.
Carey Kleiman, B.M. '73, M.M. '75, is currently an adjunct professor of music business and clarinet at Broward College. He previously taught at Florida International University, Florida Atlantic University, and the University of Hawaii, and has performed with the Miami Philharmonic, the Honolulu Symphony, and the Ft. Lauderdale Symphony and on many recording dates in South Florida and Hawaii. In earlier years he performed with, and produced for numerous artists including Ray Charles, Frank Sinatra, Boyz to Men, Tony Bennett, Woody Herman, and The Bee Gees, to name a few. He also served as a music supervisor and contractor for syndicated television shows. In the 1980s he formed his own music production company and served as the music and entertainment director for the Diplomat Hotel. He later formed CK Entertainment, specializing in corporate & meeting entertainment.
Rodney Lancaster, D.M.A. '09, is the jazz trombone soloist in the Harlem Renaissance Orchestra in New York City. He is instructor of music at La Salle Academy, New York City. During his career he has played with numerous artists, including backing Ella Fitzgerald at the very start of his career. Lancaster has performed with the Illinois Jacquet Orchestra, Maynard Ferguson & Big Bop Nouveau, the Lionel Hampton Orchestra, Betty Carter, the Manhattan Symphony Jazz Orchestra, David Berger and the Sultans of Swing, the Radio City Music Hall Orchestra and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and The New Jersey Pops, to name a few.
David LeBlanc, M.A. '11 one of the first graduates from the Arts Presenting and Live Entertainment Industries Program at the University of Miami Frost School of Music, is the assistant to the Rhythm Road program in the tour department of Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York City. The Rhythm Road is a program that sends American music groups on international tours to promote cross cultural exchange through music.
April M. Liberty, B.M. '09, is the conductor of the Young Musicians' Junior and Intermediate Orchestras within the Coral Gables Congregational United Church of Christ Community Arts Program where she is a violin and viola instructor. Liberty teaches violin to children in grades 3-5 at Florida Youth Orchestra's S.T.E.P.S group at Hialeah Gardens Elementary School and gives private after-school violin classes at Carrollton. She also instructs a group of students at West Lab Elementary School. When not teaching in schools, Liberty runs a private studio where she teached more than 30 violin and viola students throughout South Florida.
Tomasz Liebig, M.M. ’95, D.M.A. ’98, is concertmaster of the Bruckner Orchestra in Linz, Austria, and concertizes extensively in Europe as a soloist and chamber musician. He was second violinist of the Bergonzi String Quartet after receiving his DMA from the Frost School of Music.
Kacey Link, M.M. '09, was the recipient of a Graduate Research Grant from the Center for Latin American Studies, which allowed her to pursue research on Argentinean tango music. She has traveled numerous times to Argentina and throughout the United States to ascertain contemporary performance practices of touring internationally-acclaimed Argentine tango artists/ensembles such as Nestor Marconi Trio, Sonia Possetti Sextet, Pablo Ziegler and Bajofondo.
Aaron Ludwig, D.M.A '11, cellist, is a member of the New World Symphony. He has performed solo, chamber and orchestral music throughout the United States and Europe.
Before enrolling at the Frost School, Mei Mei Luo, M.M. ’07, held positions in the Philadelphia Concerto soloists and the Philadelphia Orchestra under Ricardo Muti. She served as assistant concertmaster and concertmaster of the Florida Philharmonic. After receiving her M.M. degree from Frost, she won positions with the Palm Beach Chamber Music Festival, the concertmaster post of the Miami Chamber Symphony, and has performed as associate concertmaster of the Florida Grand Opera. She is currently first violinist of the Delray String Quartet.
Cristian Măcelaru, B.M. '03, was named associate conductor of The Philadelphia Orchestra in December 2012. His new title is a step up from the assistant conductor position he held for a year. Măcelaru will continue to conduct special non-subscription performances, and cover concerts for new Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin, as well as many of the Orchestra’s guest conductors. Additionally, he will now conduct his own subscription week.
Raquel M. Montalvo, M.M. '82, Ph.D. '91, has been teaching at the Inter American University of Puerto Rico for 30 years. She is an Associate Professor of Music and Music Education, Chair of the Graduate Music Education Program. She is the Music Minister at Centro Cristiano de Restauracion Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico.
Mario Ortiz, B.M. '93, M.M. '95, has been nominated for a Latin Grammy in the category of Best Salsa Album of the Year for "Mario Ortiz All Star Band Tributo 45 Aniversario," dedicated in tribute to his late father who was a revered bandleader and arranger in Puerto Rico.
Chung Park, D.M.A. ‘08, is the new Director of Orchestral Activities at Appalachian State University where he is the administrative head and conductor of four orchestras. This past year Park worked with many fine soloists including the Marcus Roberts Trio, violinist Yosuke Kawasaki and the Waitiki 7.
Kelly A. Parkes, Ph.D. '06 assistant professor of teaching and learning in the School of Education in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences at Virginia Tech, received the university's 2010 XCaliber Award for excellence as an individual involved in teaching with technology.
Kendra Preston Leonard, M.M. '98, is highly active as a musicologist, with published articles and research presentations at such notable conferences as the 2012 Society for American Music Conference, 2012 South Central Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies Conference, and the 2011 American Shakespeare Center Blackfriars Conference, to name a few.
Marina Radiushina, D.M.A. '10 has been accepted into a two-year residency at Carnegie Hall called The Academy.
After earning his Bachelor of Music degree at the Frost School of Music, Nicolas Repetto, B.M.'03, performed throughout the world, including the Luzerne Music Festival, Les Rasse, Switzerland, the Dante Alighieri society, Rome, Italy, and in the Caribbean and South America. He moved to Los Angeles where he is pursuing his dream of scoring television shows, films, video games, and other multimedia.
Yani Rubio, B.M. '97, M.M. '01 established the music therapy program at Creative Children Therapy (CCT), a non-profit clinic in Miami, FL that serves children and adolescents with developmental disabilities or neurological disorders. Yani collaborates with occupational and physical therapists, as well as speech/language pathologists to promote children's physical development, communication skills and social/emotional functioning. In this setting, Yani also provides clinical supervision for University of Miami music therapy practicum students.He majored in music therapy at the Frost School of Music.
Jon Secada, B.M. '83, MM '86, is a three-time Grammy winner and international superstar. With sales of more than 20 million albums worldwide, Secada is also a veteran of Broadway, television, and an accomplished producer. Secada joined Gloria Estefan’s band as a background singer when he left UM, where he composed several ballads for Estefan, including the number one hit “Coming Out of the Dark.”
Armen Shaomian, D.M.A. '08, M.M. '05 recently started his own arts and business consulting company, Armenize Inc., specializing in helping non-profits and businesses reach their goals while staying true to their mission. He was most recently the national programs manager and associate producer of the YoungArts program at the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts.
Robert Sheldon, B.M. '75 is a composer of concert band and orchestral music with over 200 publications in print. He has completed over 120 commissions since 1984. Sheldon, a 25 time recipient of the ASCP Standard Award, is the Concert Band Editor for Alfred Music Publishing.
Kyle Siebrecht, M.M. '08, became the Associate Director of the Center for the Humanities at the University of Miami in January 2009. She has served as marketing and management consultant to the Miami Bach Society/Tropical Baroque Music Festival andfounded Florida Historical Performance Company, where she is the Artistic Director. Siebrecht was Executive Director of Seattle International Music Festival, an international classical music festival for six years. The Festival, under the artistic direction of Dmitry Sitkovetsky, had a European orchestra in residence, and featured international artists such as Bella Davidovich and Vladimir Feltsman.
Beau Silver, B.M. '07, has been working as a software engineer for Avid, a company known for award-winning video and audio production solutions, for more than four years. At the Frost School of Music, Silver was Recording Studio Manager at the University Miami Weeks Studio and was awarded outstanding graduating senior. He is currently working on his M.A. in Music Science and Technology at the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics program at Stanford University’s school of music.
Kathryn “Kate” Lynn Simon, Ph.D. ‘12, is an assistant professor of music education at Towson University. She was recently appointed Youth and Student Activities Chair for the Maryland and Washington D.C. Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association.
Ed Smart, B.M. '84, M.M. '87 is enjoying a diverse career as a composer and multi-instrumentalist. Composing credits for feature length productions include Denzel Washington’s Oscar-nominated and Peabody award-winning documentary Hank Aaron: Chasing the Dream, D.A. Pennebaker’s film Al Franken: God Spoke, and Shaquille O’Neal’s award-winning movie series, Sports Theater (Nickelodeon).
Esperanza Spalding, alumna of the Henry Mancini Institute, received a Grammy award in the Best New Artist category at the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles on February 13, 2011.
Elizabeth Gaile Stephens, Ph.D ’12, is an assistant professor of music education at Emporia State University. During her time teaching elementary education in Georgia she was selected as Teacher of the Year. Most recently Stephens presented her research on Singing Perceptions in the General Population at the 2012 National Association of Music Educators Conference in St. Louis.
Jamie Tagg, B.M. 04, engineered three Grammy-nominated CD’s: A Seraphic Fire Christmas, performed by Seraphic Fire, a professional chamber choir based in Miami and Brahms: Ein Deutches Requiem, Op. 45, also performed by Seraphic Fire. Peter Rutenberg, Grammy-winning conductor and record producer, was nominated for Producer of the Year for his work on the Brahms Requiem and Vanishing Nordic Chorale CDs, both of which Tagg recorded.
Ed Toth, B.M. '94, has worked with many American Rock bands. He is currently one of two drummers for The Doobie Brothers. Before joining The Doobie Brothers, Toth worked with Vertical Horizon for nine years, where he landed a multi-platinum smash with the bands RCA debut “Everything You Want” in 2000. The title track was the most played song on U.S. radio that year and won three Billboard awards. The album also yielded the hits “You’re A God,” and “Best I Ever Had.” Vertical Horizon followed up with “Go” in 2003. He has shared the stage with performers as diverse as Willie Nelson, Michael McDonald, Warren Haynes, and Erin McKeown. Toth majored in music education at the Frost School of Music.
Andres Vera, B.M. '10, cellist, is a member of Cello Street Quartet, a group of all classically trained musicians who blend a classical music tradition with modern pop tunes. Veras is also a graduate of the San Francisco Conservatory. He has been a member of the Miami Symphony Orchestra for six years.
Luis Federico Vindver, B.M. '08, is a touring musician, songwriter and producer. He recently finished a world tour with Ricky Martin as a keyboard player, arranger and co-producer of the show. He traveled to Europe, Asia, and South America as well as writing a song in his most recent album. Vindver has worked as pianist and arranger of Franco de Vita, where he recorded his "Primera Fila" album, which won two Latin Grammys, including "Best Male Pop Album.” He received an award in Billboard magazine in the music and advertising convention for his song called "Miracle," written for a documentary about children in India.
Ken Wakia from Nairobi, Kenya graduated from Frost with a M.M. in Choral Conducting in 2005. He is the Cultural and Educational Affairs Specialist at the American Embassy in Nairobi, running more that two dozen cultural and educational exchange programs between the peoples of Kenya and the US including the Fulbright program.
Aurora Wells, M.M. ‘99, bass, has performed with the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra, the Palm Beach Pops, Ellington's Jazz Club, Southwest Florida Symphony and The Naples Players. Wells has enjoyed numerous engagements as musical director and conductor with theatre organizations in the Caribbean and Southwest Florida, where she calls home.
Brian Wesolowski, Ph.D ’12, is an assistant professor of music of music education at the University of Georgia Hodgson School of Music, where he teaches instrumental music education. Wesolowski has performed with Natalie Cole, The Pussycat Dolls, Lalah Hathaway, Erykah Badu, and Jane Monheit, among many others. His studio work includes national spots for Carnival Cruise Lines, Sandals Resorts, Telemundo, Pet Supermarket, and Hardrock Casinos.
Matthew White, MM '06, D.M.A. '11, trumpeter and composer, is currently serving as Assistant Professor of Trumpet and Coordinator of Jazz Ensembles at Coastal Carolina University.
Martin Camacho Zavaleta, D.M.A. '06 has been appointed Dean of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences of the Community College of Rhode Island, the largest community college in New England, and will begin serving in the Fall of 2010. In addition, he recently performed piano recitals in Italy and will be releasing his first CD with Ruiz Armengol’s Cuban Dances under the Digital Urtext label in late 2010. He majored in keyboard performance at the Frost School of Music.
Zoe Zeniodi, D.M.A. '10 was named assistant conductor for the Florida Grand Opera in December 2012. Before being named assistant conductor, Zeniodi was Music Director of the Broward Symphony Orchestra starting the 2010-2011 season. In addition, she and has been named Associate Guest Conductor for the Alhambra Orchestra in Miami.
Bruce Zimmerman, B.M. '81, film and video composer, recently won his fourth regional Emmy for scoring Season 3 of Jonathan Bird's Blue World, an underwater nature program airing across the United States on Public Television.