Current Students
Who Are They?
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Alumni
Where Are They Now?
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Gonzalo Aguilar

Gonzalo Aguilar began his piano studies in 2008 at the National Conservatory of Music, in Lima, Peru, under the tutelage of Professor Larissa Belotserkovskaia.

In 2009, Aguilar won a competition to play with the National Symphonic Orchestra of Peru. He has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in many prestigious venues in his home country.

Between 2011 and 2013, he attended master classes given by the Russian pianist Alexander Paley, who praised Gonzalo's big sound and musicality. He was one of three students chosen in Lima to play for the famous Chinese pianist Lang Lang, who said "Gonzalo plays the piano magically." Gonzalo was also invited to attend the Golandsky Institute Summer Symposium that took place at Princeton University, where he performed Liszt's Sonata in B Minor.

Gonzalo finished his studies at the National Conservatory of Music in December 2014 with the highest accolades, he received the prize "Premio Conservatorio Nacional de Música" (The National Conservatory of Music Award).

Two years later, in 2016, he was admitted to Westminster Choir College of Rider University in Princeton, New Jersey, where he would earn a Master's in Piano Pedagogy and Performance. He studied with prestigious Professor Ingrid Clarfield, and graduated with honors.

Gonzalo has performed Liszt's Piano Concerto N.1 in E flat Major with the Westminster Community Orchestra conducted by Ruth Ochs. He was invited by Art Quitilinga, of the Quedlinburg Art Association in Germany to offer a piano recital at the Richter Haus. In 2017, he performed a recital of Peruvian compositions with William Wielgus, oboist of the prestigious National Symphonic Orchestra in Washington D.C. The recital called "Panorama de la Música Peruana," took place in the International Student House in Washington D.C. That same year, he was invited by the Peruvian Embassy to give a recital and master classes at the Prague Conservatory.

-- Gonzalo
AJ Baal

AJ Baal is a second year graduate student and is studying Piano Performance and Pedagogy under Ingrid Clarfield at Westminster Choir College. Before college, was an active student member in the Delaware Music Teachers Association where he has participated in recitals, solo piano festivals and won several state-wide competitions. A Delaware native, AJ received his B.M.A.S. at the University of Delaware in Piano Performance with minors in Music Management and Theater Production. As an undergrad, AJ studied under Christine Delbeau and was actively apart of multiple collaborative performances, the Community Music School, the UD Symphony Orchestra, the Cinema Series Chamber Orchestra, Master Players Concert Series, Opera Chamber Orchestra and other solo recitals at UD and around the Delaware area. Currently, AJ serves as a graduate student faculty member at the Westminster Conservatory teaching group piano classes and private lessons.

-- AJ
Joe Buttram

I am a upper-class non-traditional student majoring in piano at Westminster Choir College. I am born and raised in New Jersey, and I have most recently placed in 2nd place in the sophomore division in the annual in-house piano competition.

-- Joe
Richmond Denzel Garrick

Richmond Denzel Garrick is an aspiring classical pianist. He has studied the Piano & Pipe Organ privately. Presently, he is a student at Westminster Choir College, majoring in Piano Performance in his third year under the guidance of Professor Ingrid Clarfield, a nationally recognized teacher, clinician, pianist, and author.

Richmond has performed in numerous piano recitals and the "Associated Music Teachers League", recently selected him after auditioning, to play in a 'Young Musicians Concert' in Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall.

He has done three annual solo piano recitals between 2011-2015 at the United Methodist Church in New Brunswick, New Jersey and Christ The King Episcopal Church on Charleston Road, in Burlington, New Jersey. Richmond also received an outstanding honor from the New Jersey State Governor, Chris Christie, for his musical accomplishments.

He won first and second place in the NJMTA Young Musicians Competition for the Collegiate Piano division in the falls of 2016 and 17. His outstanding performance at the Regional Piano Competition of the "National Association of Negro Musicians" earned him a second place position. He was also one of the three top finalist at the "National Princeton Piano Festival" in June 2010 and he also received Honorable Mention at the "West Chester University Annual Piano Competition" in 2011, hosted by West Chester University. He was also awarded the Robert B. and Frances Tice-Claytor Endowed Scholarship along with first place in the Sophomore Division for Westminster Piano Competition from Rider University in this spring semester. In the spring of 2017 he was awarded the Damien Dixon award and was in a two tie for first place in the Junior Division for Westminster Piano Competition. In the spring of 2018, he performed the first movement of Schumann Concerto in A minor op. 54 with the Westminster Community Orchestra. Past accomplishments include a Gold Star from South Jersey Music Teachers Association, as well as honors from the New Jersey Music Teachers Association. He finds time to entertain the elderly residents at the Monroe Village Rehabilitation Center, Merwick Care & Rehabilitation in Princeton, and Care One in Moorestown.

Judges have praised his musicality, technical confidence, sensitivity, artistic maturity and charisma in auditions and competitions. They believe "He is on his way to becoming a fantastic pianist."

Natalya Marie Leistiko

Natalya Marie Leistiko is a Senior Piano Major at Westminster Choir College of Rider University in Princeton, New Jersey. She is majoring in piano under the direction of Professor Ingrid Jacobson Clarfield and completed her Junior Recital in February 2016.

Natalya had studied with Ms. Sheila Paige for five years and has performed at the Crescendo International Competition Winners Concert at the Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall for 5 consecutive years. She also received a 13-Years Award from the New Jersey Music Teachers Association in 2016.

Natalya is interested in pursuing a career which will afford her to combine her two passions: music and science. Natalya experiences music as a pianist in bloom, and she is interested in advancing her music training in college. She is also interested in unraveling the music of the mind in advanced scientific studies which will afford her to understand and apply how the brain processes music.

Natalia Mamardashvili

My name is Natalia Mamardashvili (born Georgia,1964). Back then it was part of USSR.In 1970 I was enrolled to music school(7 year in length) that I graduated with honors. I was taught piano,theory,literature,and singing through choir.

I graduated from Tbilisi high school in 1981,then went to Tbilisi State Medical school and graduated in 1989 with honors(GPA 4.0).

I came to US in 1989 with my family by winning Green Card lottery from my country. I was working different odd jobs to provide for my chilldren(upon divorce in 2003). Even though my credentials were translated in Columbia University,it’s illegal to work as MD without going to medical school here,and thatis challenging for me(time and financial issues).

I always had a dream to become a professinal pianist(and were encouraged by friends who heard me playing),and as funny as it sounds, I took this advice, and went to BCCC first,and then I was audition here at WCC where I was accepted on Master’s program.I was very honored to have such an opportunity to study with such an outstanding teachers.

Thank you to all my teachers!

-- Natalia
James Morris

James Hunter Morris is 19 years old, born in Newark, New Jersey. He attends Westminster Choir College of Rider University. James is currently a junior completing a Piano and Theory Composition degree. Currently studying with Professor Ingrid Clarfield for Piano and Stefan Young for Composition. He has performed many compositions at various venues by Mozart, Beethoven, Grieg, Liszt and Chopin. James' style and influence can be attributed to his inspiration of composers; Mozart and Chopin. He has composed multiple pieces registered in the Library of Congress....a String Quartet, Nocturne, and Etude. All compositions were composed without any assistance and were inspired by his attractions.

James has been awarded 5 Gold Medal for the State of New Jersey. One in the category of music composition and two for instrumental classical for the State of New Jersey, NAACP ACT-SO competition. He also has achieved the 2 honors at the 2015 NAACP Act So National competition. James received a Gold and Silver Medal for his Compositions and a Bronze Medal for Instrumental Classical for the New Jersey Newark Act-So. James has also placed first in the Westminster Piano Competition in 2017(freshman) and 2018 (sophomore) and placed second in the Westminster composition competition in 2018. He was also a recipient for The Damien Dixon Memorial Scholarship in 2018. This summer James studied at Brevard Music Festival with Dr. Jihye Chang-Sung for piano.

His goal and aspiration is to become a concert pianist and composer, committing to educating himself and improving as an artist.

-- James
Melissa Redway

Melissa Redway is a junior majoring in Music Education. This past year she served as Treasurer for the NJMTA Collegiate Chapter. She is looking forward to serving as president of the chapter for this school year.

-- Melissa
Nina Schierow

I am a freshman majoring in sacred music and theory/composition with a piano pedagogy minor. I love counterpoint, and everything tonal. In addition to piano, I play organ, flute, drum set, and a little of everything else.

Working with Professor Clarfield is an exhilarating experience. As someone that has physical ailments, I feel comfort and motivation working with someone that doesn't limit themselves, no matter what obstacles one may face. I'm excited to continue my studies here and to develop my skills and repertoire with such an inspiring teacher.

-- Nina
Erica Tran

Erica Tran is a second year graduate student at the Westminster Choir College of Rider University, studying under the direction of Professor Ingrid Clarfield. Erica graduated from the University of Western Ontario with a Bachelors of Music with an Honours Specialization in Music Education and studied piano with Professor Gwen Beamish. She is dedicated to learning about teaching music, and is determined to share her passion with those around her. Currently working towards her graduate degree in Piano Pedagogy and Performance, Erica is a Canadian pianist who is actively looking to improve her musicality and skills.

-- Erica
Jianyu Zhao

My name is Zhao Jianyu, and my English name is Janie. I am from China, here in the U.S. as a Junior in the piano performance major at Westminster Choir College. I started playing piano at the age of seven, and now it has been thirteen years. I love music and I can feel the emotion inside of it. When I play Bach pieces, I feel peace and calm in my heart because Bach always played his music in the church on Sabbath. Bach, Chopin and Liszt are my favorite composers. I love the romanticism of Chopin's music; it is beautiful and amazing.

I LOVE PROFESSOR CLARFIELD. She is a great teacher and is kind, humorous, patient and musical who helps me a lot. I feel like I have improved with the rhythm and expression of performing. I am really glad to study with her. It is hard to believe that I am already a Junior in WCC; the time has gone by so fast already. As a soloist, I have participated in NJMTA and I had my Junior recital earlier this year. I have also won second prize in both the freshman and sophomore levels of the WCC Annual Piano Competition.

-- Jianyu
Yiran Zhao

Yiran Zhao is 19 years old and she is currently a sophomore at Westminster Choir College, pursuing Sacred Music and Theory & Composition double degrees. In spring 2018, she received both 1st place of piano award and 1st place of composition award as a freshman at Westminster Choir College.

Yiran started playing piano at the age of 4 and she started studying with Prof. Clarfield in Spring 2018. She joined Beijing Philharmonic Choir at the age of 8 and she traveled around the world with her choir giving performances and competing in international chorus competitions. She also performed the Olympic Anthem at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games Opening Ceremony. Yiran is currently a member of Westminster Choir, and they are traveling around the world throughout the year performing a large variety of chorus works.

Yiran was accompanist of her elementary, middle and high school choirs and she started worshiping as a pianist at Beijing Kuanjie Church at the age of 13. She started composing at the age of 14, and she has written works for choir, orchestra, small ensembles and solo instruments. Several of her choral pieces were performed by Sunday school children at Beijing Kuanjie Church. Some of her choral pieces were also performed by Beijing Philharmonic Choir and Westminster Choir College students, all conducted by Yiran.

Yiran is currently working as a piano and theory tutor at Westminster Choir College, pianist at Christ Congregation Church and vocalist at Lamington Presbyterian Church. She is also one of the student accompanists of Westminster Chapel Choir and Westminster Schola Cantorum.

-- Yiran
Claire Zhu

My name is Zijun Zhu, and my English name is Claire. I am a first-year graduate student of Westminster Choir College in piano pedagogy and performance. After 14-hour flight from China, I come to the USA to study piano with Professor Clarfield, it's my honor and my dream!!!

I am an honor undergraduate student of SOOCHOW UNIVERSITY, and hold a B.M. in music education. From my childhood, I dreamed to be a piano teacher. I am and will be dedicated to teach talented children and pass the power of music to others as many as possible.

-- Claire

 

 

 

 
Laura Amoriello
Laura Amoriello has recently been appointed Assistant Professor of Piano at Ithaca College, where she teaches Secondary Piano and serves as faculty advisor for the MTNA Collegiate Chapter. She has presented at the National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy and the National Group Piano and Piano Pedagogy Conference, and has been published in Piano Pedagogy Forum and Clavier Companion. She holds the Doctor of Education degree in college music pedagogy from Teachers College, Columbia University.
Minjae Back

Pianist Minjae Back has actively appeared as a soloist, accompanist, and teacher both in South Korea and America. Ms. Back has also collaborated with instrumentalists and vocalists performed concerts at various venues including The John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts and Steinway Hall in New York City as one of The New York Piano Group members.

Ms. Back completed her Master of Music degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from Westminster Choir College of Rider University, where she studied with Ingrid Clarfield. While at Westminster, she had been teaching students ranging in ages and levels at Westminster Conservatory of Music. She earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance at Dong-A University, Busan, South Korea. Also, she went to study abroad at Brahms-Gesellschaft Scheleswig Holstein e.V. in Hamburg, Germany, where she received professional certification in Piano Performance. Ms. Back resides in Iowa City, Iowa with her husband, tenor Samuel Cho.

Anthony Baron

After Graduating from Westminster with degrees in Piano and Voice in 2011, I went onto Eastman and got a masters in Voice. In 2013 I received 1st Prize in the MTNA Young Artist Voice Competition. Since 2013, I have been working on my DMA still at Eastman and even though my degree will be in voice, this year I have started taking piano lessons with Dr. Jean Barr.

This Fall I am giving recitals in Bloomfield Hills, MI at Cranbrook Schools and Rochester, NY. I will also be at Lynchburg College for a week giving lectures and a recital. In addition to working towards a doctorate I have been affiliated with a program called the Institute for Young Dramatic Voices which is designed to help prepare young singers for the repertoire of Verdi, Strauss, and Puccini.

For the past couple years I have been serving as a Director of Music at Our Mother of Sorrows Church and teaching voice for the Eastman Community Music School teaching younger students and adult students - making use of many of the learning techniques and information taught in the Piano Pedagogy courses I had to take at Westminster - even though they are voice students! This year I also was invited to join the voice faculty at Nazareth College where I teach Music Majors and Musical Theatre.

- Anthony
Wayne Barr
  • DMA in Church Music from the University of Michigan, 1999
  • Master of Music in Choral Conducting and Master of Sacred Music with organ concentration from Southern Methodist University, 1992
  • BM in Church Music from Westminster Choir College, 1988
  • Director of Choral Activities at Tuskegee University since 2001
  • Assistant Head, Department of Fine and Performing Arts, and Coordinator of the Music Degree Program since Fall 2015
  • 2009 - 2014: Co-Director of the Italian Opera Study Abroad Program, which offers students of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) a four-week study of Italian opera with a renowned coach in Italy.
  • 2010: served as a national conductor for the Kennedy Center performance of the 105 Voices of History, a choir made up of student representatives of the 105 HBCUs as defined by the White House Initiative on HBCUs
  • February 2015: presented concerts with Coro Sinfonico Bolivia and American soloists in La Paz and Cochabamba, Bolivia under the auspices of the U.S. Embassy in Bolivia.
  • June 2017: taught at the Härnösands Folkhögskola in Härnösand, Sweden.
  • Organ recitalist and church music workshop clinician.
-- Wayne
Anthony Bernarducci

Originally from New Jersey, Anthony Bernarducci began his career as a church musician and piano teacher. He earned his bachelors degree in music education, with a concentration in piano, from Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ, and in 2005 moved to Tucson to commence his Masters Degree in Choral Conducting at the University of Arizona. Having completing his masters in 2007, Anthony began teaching high school, conducting community choirs and served as the Director of Music Ministries at Christ Church United Methodist in Tucson Arizona.

In 2012 Anthony began his doctoral studies at The Florida State University in Choral Conducting and Music Education, under the tutelage of Dr. André Thomas. During his first year he was the Assistant Conductor of the Tallahassee Community Chorus under the direction of Andrè Thomas for the choirs 25th anniversary season celebrating with choral masterworks such as Beethoven's Missa Solemenis and Mozart's Great Mass in C minor. This year Anthony is enjoying his role as teaching assistant to the university's graduate Chamber Choir in preparation for the fall performance of Handel’s Solomon.

-- Anthony Bernarducci
www.AnthonyBernarducci.com
Ryan Brechmacher

Ryan Brechmacher is an active composer, performer, teacher and pianist. As a solo pianist he has given recitals in Ohio and New Jersey, and has served as faculty accompanist for Princeton Day School, accompanist for the Princeton Girlchoir (Concert Choir, Quarter Notes and Ensemble), the Westminster Youth Chorale, Voices Chorale, and many singers and instrumentalists in the area. He has taught at Bowling Green State University's Summer Piano Camps, Westminster's Middle School Piano Camp with Lillian Livingston and at Westminster's High School Piano Camps with Ingrid Clarfield.

An accomplished composer, his works have been heard across the United States and Europe. He has had pieces premiered by the Westminster Schola Cantorum, Westminster Youth Chorale, Bowling Green Junior High School Bands, the Bowling Green Area Community Band, the Cincinnati Children's Choir, the Voices Chorale, the Princeton Girlchoir, and the Princeton Day School Chorus and Chorale. His piece, "The Lobster-Quadrille", won the 2010 Cincinnati Children's Choir Choral Composition Competition. His works have been published through Transcontinental Music Publications, Alfred Music Publishing, and GIA Publications.

Originally from Bowling Green, Ohio, he studied piano with Anne Tracy, Doris Anderson and Carol Steiner, and composition with Carol Steiner and Dr. Donald Wilson. He earned his Bachelor of Music degree in both Piano Performance/Pedagogy and Theory/Composition, studying with Ingrid Clarfield, Stefan Young and Joel Phillips at Westminster Choir College of Rider University.

Mr. Brechmacher has been teaching private piano lessons at Princeton Day School since the Fall of 2007, where he also serves as the Faculty Accompanist and AP Music Theory teacher in the Upper School. He lives in Lawrenceville, NJ, with his wife and son.

Candice Choi

Candice Choi, M.M. '12 is enjoying her life in San Francisco as the director of Musicians in the Making, where she runs a program of teaching group and private piano lessons and preschool music! In 2017, her school added a guitar program and is excited to see it blossom. Her students love to hear about her graduate school days at WCC with Mrs. Clarfield and in fact, they love learning from her books too! Candice is so thankful to do what she loves every day and loves watching her students grow up. Candice enjoys serving on the boards of Music Teachers Association of California San Francisco branch and the San Francisco chapter of MTNA.

Victoria Chow

Mrs. Victoria Chow-Torres has both her Bachelors and Master's in Music (Piano Performance and Pedagogy) and studied with Ingrid Clarfield (internationally renowned pedagogue) for over 6 years where she respectfully graduated Summa Cum Laude and with Distinction. She is recently recognized as a Nationally Certified Teacher of Music in Piano through Music Teachers National Association in August 2017.

Mrs. Chow is currently an Adjunct Professor of Piano at her alma mater, Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ.

Mrs. Chow has maintained a private piano studio for over 15 years. As a member for both New Jersey Music Teacher's Association, Music Teachers National Association, and 2017-2019 President and Festival Chairperson for Central New Jersey's Piano Teacher's Forum, Mrs. Chow's students are highly involved in competitions, festivals, auditions and recitals. Her students have been invited to perform at Carnegie Hall and Kimmel Center in recognition of the highest state score for the Music Development Program, Rising Talents Music Fest, Crescendo Music Festival, NJMTA High Honors Recitals, NJMTA Honors Recitals and PTF Honors recitals. Every year, her studio presents a Winter Recital and Spring Recital. Additionally, Mrs. Chow facilitates studio classes monthly (free of charge) to encourage a less solitary approach to piano.

Mrs. Chow is proud to have tenured at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in West Windsor, NJ as church musician from 2006-2016. She is currently the Collaborative Artist at Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Princeton in Princeton, NJ. Mrs. Chow was the recent Director of Piano and certified MusikGarten teacher at Musicians in the Making Music School in Plainsboro, NJ, Piano Teacher for St. Rose of Lima Catholic of Freehold, NJ and Piano Camp Teacher for Calgary Arts Summer School Association in Canada.

Robert Colby-Witanek

Robert has completed a Bachelor's degree in Piano and a Master's degree in Piano Pedagogy and Performance at Westminster Choir College, and he has taught piano at Raritan Music Center, Westerhoff School of Music and Art, World Wide Piano and Music, and Allegra School of Music and Arts, in addition to teaching piano independently. He worked as a section leader for two-and-a-half years at St. Thomas Church, Whitemarsh and now plays the piano at St. James Memorial Episcopal Church in Eatontown, NJ. He has been accompanying the Chin-Yun Chorus for the past year, and he is now starting a position as a choral accompanist at Drew University. He has played the piano and the synthesizer for musical productions and other performances for the Westminster Players, Princeton Day School, the West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School District, and the Center School. Robert received the Damien Dixon Memorial Scholarship in 2015.

--Robert
Matthew J. Gutwald

"I am teaching at Vivaldi Music Academy as one of their core piano faculty, holding a full time teaching schedule of 50-60 students per week. I also am auditioning for local young artist programs for the 2015-16 season that specializes in solo and chamber repertoire, so I'll keep you posted about those details as they come up. Starting in September, I'll accompany vocalists and instrumentalists from Rice University as needed.

Hope this helps!! Wishing you all of my best as the new school year begins!! I'll text everyone to make sure your candy dish is stocked and loaded at all times."

- Matt
Ayumi Hashimoto
"My name is Ayumi Hashimoto. My studies include Oberlin College Conservatory of Music (B.M.) with Sedmara Zakarian Rutstein and Westminster Choir College (M.M.) with Ingrid Clarfield. I am also an alumni of Mrs. Clarfield's High School Piano Camp! Presently, I am teaching in New Jersey, both privately and at music schools. My students have been selected as performers through various organizations for Weill Recital/Hall of Carnegie Hall, Kimmel Center, etc.; passed with distinction marks on exams of Associated Board of Royal Schools of Music; participated in events of NJMTA. One of the neatest experience was when my student played "Toccata Chromatica", a piece by Dennis Alexander, from Mrs. Clarfield's Keys to Stylistic Mastery, at Weill Recital Hall... "               
--Ayumi H
Shannon Hesse

" Dr. Shannon Hesse, pianist, has performed both nationally and internationally as a collaborative and solo pianist including a concerto premiere at the Curtis Institute of Music, a solo appearance at Weill Recital Hall, and as a choral accompanist at Carnegie Hall. Formerly on the faculty of Valdosta State University, she currently teaches piano, theory, song literature and opera workshop at Texas Southern University and is a vocal coach at Houston Baptist University. 

" Shannon completed her doctoral studies in Piano Accompanying and Chamber Music from the Eastman School of Music where she studied with Dr. Jean Barr. She also holds degrees from Westminster Choir College (B.M) and The Catholic University of America (M.M.) where she studied with Ingrid Clarfield and Marilyn Neeley respectively. Additionally, she spent two summers in the collaborative artists program at the Aspen Music Festival. Shannon lives in Houston with her husband, Houston Symphony cellist Anthony Kitai, and their two adorable cats.

-- Shannon
Daniel Hine

"I've been keeping very busy as a musician down here in Charlottesville, VA. I accompany two choirs (a local community chorus and a mens choir at UVA), run the music program for my church, gig a LOT, and still write a fair amount of music. As of this year, I have been appointed to the Diocese of Virginia Committee on Liturgy and Music, so I help plan and run all the worship services planned by our church diocese (ordination of priests and deacons, annual conferences, music training workshops, etc.) I work a few hours each week at Starbucks, which is fun and provides an endless supply of coffee!"

-- Daniel
Pana Hong

My name is Caesfianae(Pana) Hong. I have been teaching in local music school, Let's Play Music in Derry, New Hampshire since 2013 and will start teaching in the Manchester Community Music School in Manchester, NH this Fall. Also, I run my own private studio in Manchester, New Hampshire. I serve as a staff accompanist at Bedford ward, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and often play as a soloist and a member of trio locally.

I am not sure if you still remember that I told you I had a few talented students. Two of them actually won first prize in their categories in Golden key music festival and had their gala performances at Carnegie Hall in Jun. It was such a moment as a teacher to see their improvements, achievements, and love in music. And I had to say that I could have not been able to experience this without you. The classes and the internship with you was not easy(it was actually tough!), but it is so obvious that I learned tons of great things to be a good teacher from you. Thank you again!

- Pana
Rick Hoffenberg

In 2007, Rick Hoffenberg joined the faculty of Marywood University, where he is currently Associate Professor, Director of Choral Activities, and Co-Chair of the Department of Music, Theater, and Dance. He has also been Music Director of the Wyoming Seminary Civic Orchestra since 2013. He previously held faculty positions at the University of Northern Iowa and Williams College. During his doctoral residency at Yale University, he served as Principal Assistant Conductor of Yale Camerata and Assistant Conductor of Simon Carrington's Schola Cantorum. Dr. Hoffenberg has spent the past twenty summers at Chautauqua Opera, where he is a pianist, coach, and assistant conductor. He has also worked for New York City Opera, BMG Classics/RCA Victor Red Seal, Columbia Artists Management, the Milken Archive, and Spoleto Festival USA. As a pianist, he has performed at Orchestra Hall in Chicago; the Music Institute of Chicago; Rockefeller Chapel in New York City; and Richardson Auditorium, Taplin Auditorium, and Bristol Chapel, all in Princeton, New Jersey. He was the state winner, division winner, and national finalist in the 1994 MTNA-Wurlitzer Piano Competition. He holds degrees from Princeton University, Yale University, and Westminster Choir College of Rider University.

Ben Houghton

Ben Houghton recently completed 18 months working as a company pianist for American Ballet Theater, traveling and performing in venues around the world including the Metropolitan Opera House and the Emitates Palace Abu Dhabi. He is currently volunteering in India, teaching music at The Shanti Bhavan Children's Project.

Amy Hughley

Amy Hoffman Hughley joined the artistic staff of the Indianapolis Children's Choir in the fall of 2014 as director of Bella Voce, ICC's high school women's ensemble. In the fall of 2016, she began her role as ICC's Associate Artistic Director, overseeing ICC's Prep Choirs, Beginning Choirs and Neighborhood Choir Academies. Mrs. Hughley also serves the co-director of the Anderson Area Youth Chorale and the Anderson Area Concert Choir. She is an adjunct faculty member at Butler University, where she teaches Secondary Methods courses to music education majors. She also teaches private piano lessons, serving students of many ages and abilities.

From 2002 to 2012, Hughley taught choral music at Riverwood High School in Atlanta, GA, where she was named the 2011 Teacher of the Year. In 2013, she was elected president of the Georgia American Choral Director's Association, and her choral articles have appeared in national and state ACDA publications. She currently serves on the board of the Indiana Choral Directors Association (ICDA).

Mrs. Hughley's choirs have been selected to perform at the ICDA Conference in 2017, the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) Southern Division Conference in 2010, and the Georgia Music Educators (GMEA) In Service Conventions in 2008 and 2011.

Mrs. Hughley has been a choral clinician and adjudicator for several honor choirs and festivals throughout Georgia and Indiana. She received her Masters of Music Education from The University of Georgia and her Bachelor of Music degrees in Music Education and Piano Pedagogy from Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey. During her undergraduate studies, she was a three-year member of the Westminster Choir under the direction of Joseph Flummerfelt, where she toured to Korea, Taiwan, and France, and sang in many of the operas performed at the Spoleto USA Festival in Charleston, South Carolina. She studied piano with Ingrid Jacobson Clarfield, voice with Laura Brooks Rice, and conducting with James Jordan, Andrew Megill, Allen Crowell and Melanie Jacobson. She has led seminars on the piano music of Claude Debussy at Westminster Choir College, and she taught High School Piano Camp at Westminster Choir College for eight summers.

Mrs. Hughley lives in Indianapolis with her husband, Brad and her daughter, Katharine.

Hyo Jung Huh

Pianist HYOJUNG HUH was hailed as having “crystalline perfection”, “the tonal beauty of individual notes” and described as showing “new interpretation on old music” by the New York Concert Review on her Carnegie Debut recital in 2013. One year later Ms. Huh returned to Carnegie hall, and Frank Daykin from the New York Concert Review described her performance as “a display of superior pianistic skill, with thundering climaxes, ethereal pianissimi, lyricism, beautiful tone, and totally committed playing”.

Ms. Huh has actively performed as a soloist and recitalist in such prestigious venues as Carnegie Hall, Darton Center in Michigan, Musikverein Hall in Vienna, Austria, Seoul Arts Center and Sejong Arts Center in Seoul, Korea, Palazzo Fava, Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Bologna, and Falcone Borsellino Hall in Sicily, Italy. She made appearances in several summer festivals, including the International Keyboard Institute and Festival in New York, the Piano Summer in New Paltz, the Wiener Musikseminar International Summer Course in Vienna, Austria, and most recently the Gilmore Keyboard Festival.

Recipient of several prestigious scholarship awards, Ms. Huh is one of select few to receive scholarship in the Arts by the Kwanjeong Educational Foundation. For over eight years, her living expenses and tuition during her stay in the USA was fully supported by the Kwanjeong Educational Foundation. Ms. Huh is a prizewinner of numerous competitions including the Korean Teenagers National Competition, the Hankuk Ilbo (Korean Newspaper) National Competition, the Korean Piano Society Competition, the Duo Society Competition, the Irving Shain Beethoven Competition, and the latest at the Bradshaw and Buono International Piano Competition in New York as well as the IBLA Grand Prize International Music Competition in Italy.

She has pursued various art-related fields and has sought profound depth in her musical interpretations. In addition to her piano performance study at Seoul National University (B.M. summa cum laude & M.M., studying with Hie-yon Choi), Westminster Choir College (M.M. with high distinction, Ingrid Clarfield), Indiana University-Bloomington (P.D., Shigeo Neriki) and the University of Wisconsin-Madison (D.M.A., Christopher Taylor), she has also majored in aesthetics (B.A. summa cum laude, College of Humanities, Seoul National University), sacred music (M.M. with high distinction, Westminster Choir College) and choral conducting (M.M. University of Wisconsin). Such additional studies have granted her unique insight into her piano repertories. In her undergraduate thesis at Seoul National University, Ms. Huh interpreted the development of musical forms as a realization of Zeitgeist, the spirit of the times. For her master’s thesis at Seoul National University, Ms. Huh traced Messiaen’s outlook based on Catholic ontology, Catholic liturgy and biblical language, which led her to identify how his outlook was revealed in his piano compositions. Her D.M.A. final project at University of Wisconsin-Madison involved examining the metaphysical and theological depth of Shinuh Lee’s Chorale Fantasy for Piano No. 1 “Comfort, Comfort My People”.

As a dedicated advocate for Shinuh Lee’s works, Ms. Huh gave the US premier of Chorale Fantasy No.1 at Rutgers University in 2012, the World Premier of Chorale Fantasy No.2 at Seoul Arts Center in 2013, the EU Premier of Chorale Fantasy No.1 at Musikverein Hall in Vienna, and the German Premier of Chorale Fantasy No.1 and No.3 at Hochschule für Musik und Theater München in 2014. Ms. Huh’s recording of the complete cycle of Chorale Fantasy by Shinuh Lee was released in Dux label record in 2014.

Alicia Wareham Jones

I'm still working at Carnegie Hall, now as Senior Manager of Program Planning where I oversee the contracting and budgeting of the Carnegie Hall Presentation season. Sue Landis (another WCC alumni) is a colleague of mine as well, working in the Weill Music Institute - Carnegie Hall's education programming department. I love working in Performing Arts Admin, and definitely wouldn't have the career I have without my experiences and education at WCC.

-- Alicia
Lauren Kooistra

Lauren Kooistra is Associate Director and Research Associate of the Institute for the Arts and Humanities at The Pennsylvania State University. She holds degrees in Piano Performance (B.M.), Piano Performance and Pedagogy (M.M.), and Music Education (Ph.D.), and has continuously kept a piano teaching studio for students of many ages. Her research focuses on the nature of young children’s learning and musical development, particularly within individualized settings involving the piano. She is interested in the ways that children enact their personal musicianship, and her scholarship has been internationally published and presented. At Penn State she has been an instructor in the Music department, and has continued her piano learning by collaborating on many Voice and Choral department projects.

Raymond Lau

Raymond Lau was born in NYC and has lived the past twenty years in Princeton, New Jersey. He received his Bachelor's Degrees in Computer Science and Music from Rutgers. Raymond previously studied piano with Dr Larry Kauffman from Summit University. He is currently earning his Masters in Piano Performance and Pedagogy and works with the Westminster Conservatory as a Graduate Assistant.

David Leifer

Dr. David Leifer joined the faculty of Westminster Choir College in the fall of 2011 as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Piano. He has experience teaching each of the various sections of the piano secondary sequence at Westminster. Dr. Leifer earned a Bachelor of Music degree, summa cum laude, in Piano (2006) and a Master of Music degree, with distinction, in Piano Pedagogy and Performance (2008) from Westminster Choir College of Rider University, where he studied with Professor Lillian Livingston and Professor Ingrid Clarfield, respectively.

While at Westminster, he won the 2004 annual Westminster Piano Awards competition, and had the honor of performing in the Weill Recital Hall of Carnegie Hall in 2007. Dr. Leifer completed his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Piano Pedagogy and Performance in 2011 from the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance, where he studied piano and pedagogy with Dr. John Ellis. His dissertation work culminated in a lecture recital on ragtime piano music, a solo recital of works by Beethoven and Schumann, and a research paper on performance anxiety and the developing pianist.

Dr. Leifer is a Permanent Professional Certified Teacher of Music by the Music Teachers National Association. He successfully maintains a large private piano studio of over thirty students of varying ages and levels. His students have performed in Carnegie Hall, and have been successful in music festivals and graded piano exams by the Royal Conservatory of Music and the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music. In addition to all of his teaching assignments, Dr. Leifer serves as the music director of the Allentown United Methodist Church in Allentown, NJ.

Rebecca Leshures

Rebecca Leshures is a Canadian pianist based in New York City. She completed her B.M. in Piano with Ingrid Clarfield at Westminster Choir College, then continued her education at Manhattan School of Music, completing her M.M. in Piano Performance in 2012 with Philip Kawin. She is currently a faculty member of Bergen Academy of Music and teaches privately in Manhattan. She has also been successful as a collaborative pianist, and has been a Staff Accompanist at both Mannes and Manhattan School of Music Precollege Division. Her Masters Recital can be viewed on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/rebeccaleshures

Ming Luke

With the "energy, creativity and charisma not seen since Leonard Bernstein" and "mind-blowing" and "spectacular" conducting, Ming Luke is a versatile conductor that has excited audiences around the world. Highlights include conducting the Bolshoi Orchestra in Moscow, performances of Romeo and Juliet and Cinderella at the Kennedy Center, his English debut at Sadler's Wells with Birmingham Royal, conducting Dvorak's Requiem in Dvorak Hall in Prague, recording scores for a Coppola film, and over a hundred performances at the San Francisco War Memorial with San Francisco Ballet. He has been recognized nationally for his work with music education and has designed and conducted education concerts and programs with organizations such as the Berkeley Symphony, Houston Symphony, Sacramento Philharmonic, San Francisco Opera and others. Luke has soloed as a pianist with Pittsburgh Symphony, Sacramento Philharmonic, and San Francisco Ballet, and currently serves as Music Director for the Merced Symphony and Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra; Associate Conductor for the Berkeley Symphony; and Principal Guest Conductor for the San Francisco Ballet. Long time critic Allan Ulrich of the San Francisco Chronicle said, "Ming Luke delivered the best live theater performance I've ever heard of [Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet]"and in 2016 Luke's War Requiem was named best choral performance of 2016 in the San Francisco Bay Area.

For the 18-19 season, Luke serves as an Assistant Conductor for the San Francisco Symphony, opens the Berkeley Symphony's season, works with the ARIA program with San Francisco Opera, and will return to the Kennedy Center and Sadler's Wells in London with San Francisco Ballet. Guesting at the San Bernardino Symphony, Billings Symphony, and Opera San Jose, Luke will also embark on a Baltics tour with the Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra, a well regarded chorus for whom he is only the third Music Director in over fifty years.

Passionate about collaborate with dance companies and deepen the impact of movement to live music, he has guested with Boston Ballet, New York City Ballet Orchestra, Nashville Symphony/Ballet, San Diego Ballet and others and conducted l'Orchestre Promethee in Paris as part of San Francisco Ballet's residency with Les Etes de la Danse. Noted for is work with Ballet. Famed dancer Natalia Makarova stated, "Ming has a mixture of pure musicality and a sensitivity to needs of the dancers, which are such rare qualities."

Luke has written, arranged, and performed over 150 education concerts with the Berkeley Symphony and has served on grant panels for the National Endowment of the Arts and the Grants and Cultural Committee of the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission. An exciting pops conductor, Luke has created and conducted a variety of pops concerts in many venues, from baseball stadiums, to picnics in the park with over 4,000 people in attendance, traditional concert halls and recording for Major League Baseball.

Ming Luke holds a Master of Fine Arts in Conducting from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Music in Music Education and Piano Pedagogy from Westminster Choir College of Rider University.

Nikita Mamedov

Nikita Mamedov received his Ph.D. in Music with concentration in Music Theory and minor in Musicology from Louisiana State University. He also holds a Master of Music degree in Piano Pedagogy & Performance and Bachelor of Music degree in Piano and Music Theory & Composition from Westminster Choir College of Rider University, where he studied with Professor Ingrid Clarfield between 2009 and 2014. In 2011, Dr. Mamedov was a winner in the Westminster Piano Scholarship Competition and was a finalist at Princeton Piano Competition. He also performed with the Westminster Community Orchestra and at the annual Rangeley Friends of the Arts concert series at Rangeley, Maine between 2009 and 2018. In addition, he has conducted research and published articles on Schenkerian theory, interval relations, and harmonic dissonance in the works of Chopin and Scriabin. He has presented papers at the following conferences:

  • 2016 International Chopinological Conference in Poland;
  • 2017 Modus-Modi-Modality Conference in Cyprus;
  • 2018 International Conference on New Music Theory Concepts in Italy;
  • 2018 Russian — Italian Musical Connections Conference (as part of Orfeo Festival) in Italy;
  • 2016, 2017, and 2018 Bridges Conferences in Finland, Canada, and Sweden. Bridges Conference is an annual event dedicated to interdisciplinary studies of math, music, and art.
Radek Materka

"I have presented solo recitals, chamber music concerts in North and South America, Europe and Asia. This year I also played several concertos with orchestras throughout Latin America (Mozart´s D minor concerto K.466, Beethoven´s Coral Fantasy op. 80 and Paderewski´s A minor concerto). I have recorded 2 recitals for television and the Mexican Radio institute. Currently I am a full-time tenured Profesor of Piano at the School of Music of the National Fine Arts Institute in Mexico City where I work with highly gifted young pianists. My students have been prizewinners and finalists of several national and international piano competitions in Mexico, Spain and Costa Rica. This summer, I was invited to present piano masterclasses and pedagogy sessions for teachers at the John Perry Academy of Music´s Summer Festival in Los Angeles."               

Rose McCathran,
B.M., M.M., NCTM

Pianist Rose McCathran is a teacher, lecturer, adjudicator, and performer who loves sharing her passion of music. She serves as a solo and collaborative artist and has given performances in the United States and Germany. Dedicated to teaching, she runs McCathran Piano Studio; a studio consisting of thirty-five students ranging in ages and levels. Her piano students have performed beautifully in studio recitals, won composition competitions, successfully fulfilled musicianship examinations, given full-length solo piano recitals, and enthusiastically participated in high level piano competitions and festivals, some of which have awarded her students solo piano performances at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall, New York. Several of her intermediate and advanced students have continued to study piano professionally in college as majors, minors, and as recreational students. 

A chorister as well, Ms. McCathran has performed in the Westminster Choir and the Westminster Symphonic Choir at Carnegie Hall, the Lincoln Center, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, and the Kimmel Center with the world’s leading orchestras and conductors. She has presented lectures to undergraduate music majors at Harvard University via Skype Presentation, to graduate students at  Westminster Choir College, to adult students at Westminster Conservatory of Music, and to high school students at Barnes and Noble in Princeton, New Jersey. 

Ms. McCathran holds a Master of Music degree and a Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from Westminster Choir College of Rider University, where she studied under internationally renowned teacher and pianist Ingrid Clarfield. Ms. McCathran is a Nationally Certified Teacher of Music (NCTM) and is on the distinguished faculty of the Westminster Choir College Piano Pedagogy Certificate Program, where she teaches courses in piano technique. She is also a member of the Artist Piano Faculty at the Westminster Conservatory in Princeton, New Jersey. In addition, Ms. McCathran serves as an adjudicator for local music festivals and competitions. She resides in Lawrenceville, New Jersey with her husband, composer and pianist  Ryan Brechmacher (ASCAP), and their beautiful son. 

Angela Meyers
"Greetings fellow Clarfieldites and visitors!!  I just recently graduated from WCC in May 2005 with my Master of Music in Piano Performance and Pedagogy, of course studying with our Favorite Diva.  I received my Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from the Lawrence Conservatory of Music in June 2003.  I am currently living in the very wealthy state of Connecticut where I am on the piano faculties of Sacred Heart University and the Westport School of Music.  Between the two schools, I have 50 private students!!  Yeah, I'm pretty sure I'm not going to get all their names down.  But, who would of thought, I'm making a good living as a piano teacher!!!  I'm also getting a chance to do some performing for the faculty concerts at the schools I'm working for, and I'm preparing a recital geared towards children that features Poulenc's The Story of Babar and Jon Deak's Shiver Me Timbers--piano music that incorporates a narrated story(I love talking while I play!).  So far, life is good."               
-- Angela (aka Diva Jr.)
Raymond Nugent

Ray Nugent was raised in Red Bank, NJ and graduated from Red Bank Regional High School in 2010

Ray graduated from Westminster Choir College in 2014 summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in Piano, and in 2016 with a master‘s in Piano Performance and Pedagogy, with distinction, while holding a Graduate Assistantship for the Piano Department. While at Westminster, he placed second in the freshman level Annual Piano Competition and third in junior level competition, and in his sophomore year he received the Damien Dixon Scholarship Award. Ray was also the accompanist for the Westminster Conservatory Collegiate Chorale in their production of Titanic: The Musical, and the for the Westminster Players in their production of the musical, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. Besides piano, he was also a member of the Westminster Concert Handbell Choir for five years, which tours different regions of the country annually.

Currently, Ray Nugent teaches piano privately in the Princeton area and provides music for The United First Presbyterian Church of Amwell. He also co-directs the Ewing High School Handbell Choir and accompanies Winter and Spring concerts for several different schools throughout Central Jersey.

Joy Parker
B.M., M.M., NCTM

Joy Parker is currently residing in Xi'an China- a big city in China. She teaches oral English to graduate students at Petroleum University. She has only been in China for about a month, but has already begun teaching a piano student, observed at Xi'an Conservatory, and begun to make contacts with musicians who teach at the conservatory. In the future Joy will be leading a children's choir that will be doing a Christmas presentation and possibly leading an early childhood music and movement class.

Audrey Peterbark

I am now a General Music Teacher in the great state of Texas! I work for Cedar Hill, Independent School System in Cedar Hill Texas just outside of Dallas. I am the Associate Director of Music at the First United Methodist Church of Keller in Keller, Texas. I am an active member of the Dallas Metroplex Musicians Association and I am still an Independent Piano Teacher!!!

Sabina Pauta Pieslak

Jonathan and I are living in Hawai'i on research leave until January 2018, through a special grant that allows us to have time away from the classroom. He's now a full Professor at CCNY, I'm continuing as Adjunct Associate Professor, and helping high school students with their college applications, essays, SAT prep, etc., through my business, www.selecteducationalconsulting.com.

We're also surfing, watching dolphins, and our big news -- we're getting ready to adopt twin baby boys from South Korea! We're excited and look forward to meeting them and bringing them home soon, hopefully this coming spring.

-- Sabina Pauta Pieslak

Anthony Rafaniello
Anthony Rafaniello, Class of 2005, graduated with a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education and Sacred Music. He is the Director of Choral Activities at Cranford High School, a position he has held for the past ten years. In 2010, Anthony completed a Master of the Arts degree in Music Education at Teachers' College, Columbia University. He currently serves as Music Director and Organist at Trinity Episcopal Church, Cranford, has served as the piano accompanist for the New Jersey All-State Chorus for the past two years, and is Secretary of the Westminster Choir College Alumni Council.
Asher Severini

Asher Severini began his formal music training at the age of 8. Although originally passionate about composition, he became enthralled with the genius of composers such as J.S. Bach, Chopin, as well as Elliott Carter, Samuel Barber and other 20th Century icons. He studied piano and theory at New England Conservatory as an un-dergraduate studying with Wha Kyung Byun, Russell Sherman, and Gabriel Chodos and Deborah Stein. During Steve Reich's residency at NEC in 2007, Asher participated in a performance of Reich's Six Pianos at Jordan Hall. The following year he partici-pated in NEC's Carter Centennial Celebration performing Elliott Carter's Piano Sonata on a program with the Chiara String Quartet. At NEC’s Jordan Hall in 2009, Asher per-formed Katie Agoc's, Division of Heaven and Earth, a solo contemporary work as part of the third annual Arthur Bergur Memorial Concert. He has been called a performer of "relentless intensity." In 2013 Asher began his Masters in Piano Pedagogy and Per-formance at Westminster Choir College studying with Ingrid Clarfield. During this 2 year period Asher was the winner of the Princeton Festival Piano Competition, Open Class Category and played in masterclasses taught by Steven Spooner, Joseph Kalichstein, and Marina Lomazov, Daniella Mineva, and Natalya Antonova. During re-cent summers Asher has attended music festivals in Europe and in the US such as MusicFest Perugia and the Atlantic Music Festival.

Asher’s main piano teachers have been James Goldsworthy, Maria Clodes Jaguaribe, Gabriel Chodos, Wha Kyung Byun, and Russell Sherman, Ingrid Clarfield and Robert Koenig. Asher currently is pursuing his DMA in both solo and collaborative piano as a student of Robert Koenig at UCSB and is the recipient of the Regents Fellowship Award.

Asher's Video Link: Click here

Seth Slaymaker

Seth Slaymaker holds a Bachelors '07 and Masters of Music in Piano Performance and Pedagogy '09 from Westminster Choir College. Upon graduation Seth went on to audition, enlist and become an Army Bandsman graduating Bootcamp from Fort Benning, GA. and the Army school of Music in Norfolk, VA. 2010. From there Seth moved to Los Angeles to become a part of the 300'th Army Reserve Band playing in various jazz, rock, orchestral and marching ensembles providing musical support for various Army related events, duties, and community outreach programs throughout California and the west coast (he is still actively serving). In November of 2011 Seth married his wife Jessyca and then opened Slaymaker Music Studios where he teaches a variety of instruments to children and adults as well as CardioBody Fitness, a gym where Seth and his wife teach kickboxing and various weightlifting classes daily. Both studios are located in Sherman Oaks, CA. Outside of teaching music and fitness, Seth is also a very active performer playing bass guitar and many other instruments with a variety of country rock artists (Aaron Pax Taylor, Chris Lozano, Nate Moran) and rock (Jason Blair). He can be seen performing weekly throughout Southern California, the west coast and occasionally the east coast. Seth is also a father of two boys, Avery (born March 19, 2013) and Riley (born February 10, 2017). Follow him on Instagram: @SethSlaymaker and on Facebook: Seth Slaymaker Music to see where he is playing next and what other upcoming projects are in the works.

-- Seth
Feifei Tang

Feifei Tang received her B.M. degree in Music Education of Piano Performance at Xinghai Conservatory of Music in 2011 and got her M.M. in Piano Pedagogy and Performance with distinction from Westminster Choir College of Rider University in May, 2013. After she graduated, she moved back to China and gave a piano recital at Xinghai Music Hall on December 21th, 2013. She is currently working at Guangdong Radio and Television in China and is also teaching private piano lessons at her own studio. Last year, she had an interview on a chat show talking about the differences between Asian traditional piano training and American training style that she experienced on GDTV International channel. The show is called 'FaceTime' which also been upload on YouKu website: http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XNjAyNDE3NDM2.html

Heather Atagan Thorarinson

Heather Atagan Thorarinson '04 & '06 is currently living in the North suburbs of Chicago Illinois. Aside from maintaining her private studio in the north shore, Heather is busy being a mom to her two children Ariana and Roman and hanging out with her husband Joel.

Kristen Todd

Kristen Todd completed her Master of Music degree in May, 2014 at Westminster Choir College, where she studied with Ingrid Clarfield. In 2012, she graduated summa cum laude from Capital University with her Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance and Keyboard Pedagogy. Among her accomplishments and honors include her being selected to present at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research 2011 and 2012; induction into the National College Honor Society, and the National Music Honor Society.

While at Westminster, she completed internships with Betty Stoloff working with college class piano, and Dr. Jim Goldsworthy working with adult and younger private students. She has been teaching since arriving in Princeton in 2012 and currently teaches 30 students ranging in ages and levels. She is an active member of NJMTA and MTNA, and also serves as pianist/organist at the Martinsville United Methodist Church.

  Kristen Topham

Kristen Topham is an Adjunct Professor of Piano at Longwood University in Farmville, VA where she teaches piano primary and secondary lessons, class piano, duo/duet repertoire, and music theory. She is also the pianist for the Longwood Advanced choirs. Mrs. Topham is also the Director of the Longwood Center for Community Music, a successful new program that offers quality music instruction to children and adults in the Farmville and surrounding communities. She directs the group piano program at the center which includes teaching the group classes and mentoring the college music majors who student teach the follow-up private lessons. She also teaches the classes for young beginners and adults through the Center where her students develop creative musical expression at the piano. Her private students build a solid technique that connects directly to sound production and musicality.

Prior to living in Farmville, Kristen maintained an active piano studio in Princeton, NJ. Her students performed in the Weill Recital Hall of Carnegie Hall and the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia. She was an Adjunct piano professor at Westminster Choir College for seven years and an artist faculty member at the Westminster Conservatory. Each summer she returns to the Westminster campus as a teacher at the High School Piano Camp.

Kristen holds an MM in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from Westminster Choir College and a BM in Piano Performance from Brigham Young University. He is a Nationally Certified Teacher of Music, and currently serves as the corresponding secretary to the Richmond Chapter of the VMTA.

Monica Wallace

Hi Everyone!  After graduating from WCC in ‘06, I moved back to the Boston area.  Since then, I’ve been happily dividing my time between teaching and accompanying.  I currently have around 40 students (ages 4 – 17), so that keeps me quite busy.  I’m enjoying both the freedom of running an independent studio out of my house and also the camaraderie of teaching at a couple community music schools.  As far as accompanying, I work with the Treble Chorus of New England, a great youth choir in my area.  I’ve also done some free-lance work with a couple singers; performing Dichterliebe last year was a highlight for me.  I’m currently collaborating with a wonderful soprano (Alison Trick), and we’re hoping to make a CD in the near future.  Long term, I’m hoping to return to school in the fall of 2009 (to study church history).  In other news, my first niece was born on August 24, 2008!  I’m loving being an aunt!

-- Monica Wallace
Tyler Weakland

Praised for his adroit collaborative piano playing, Tyler Weakland works as a staff accompanist and coach at Westminster Choir College accompanying classical voice students in operatic and art song repertoire and at Rider University accompanying musical theatre students. Mr. Weakland received a Bachelor of Music in Sacred Music with concentrations in piano and voice from Westminster Choir College, where he studied with Ingrid Clarfield, J.J. Penna, and Kathy Price. Mr. Weakland has performed with noted singers such as Laquita Mitchell, Elizabeth Sutton, and Rochelle Ellis, and has worked with Dalton Baldwin, Sharon Sweet, Laura Brooks Rice, and Harold Evans. An experienced choral accompanist, Mr. Weakland has worked extensively with the choirs at Westminster Choir College and has spent summers accompanying for Weston Noble, Charles Bruffy, Vance George, and Bruce Chamberlain. Mr. Weakland was a member of and accompanist for the world-renowned Westminster Choir, enjoying tours across the country and residencies at the Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston, South Carolina, where he was also a member of the Spoleto Festival Orchestra as portative organist.

Tyler Weakland is also an accomplished conductor, who made his international conducting debut at St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna, Austria. In the summer of 2014, Mr. Weakland was a conducting fellow at the Choral Music Institute at Oxford where he conducted the Westminster Williamson Voices and studied conducting with James Jordan and James Whitbourn. Other conducting teachers include: Joe Miller, Amanda Quist, Steve Pilkington, Tom Shelton, and Lynn Drafall. Mr. Weakland is the Minister of Music at St. Paul Lutheran Church in East Windsor, New Jersey, where he directs the senior choir and bell choir.

Richard Woo

"Hello all, I am happy to have moved over to the "Alumni" side of this page! I graduated with an MM in May 2010 in Piano Pedagogy/Performance and Music Education. I am now teaching a full load of students at Westminster Conservatory in Princeton. I have also continued to work with Mrs. C's High School Piano Camp in the summers. So even after having graduated, I will always have Mrs. C close to my heart!"

-- Richard
Joseph Woodhull

"After graduating from Westminster Choir College of Rider University with a Bachelor of Arts in Music degree, Joseph Woodhull worked for 2 years as the Coordinator of Internet Projects for Rider University where he was instrumental in the design and maintenance of the Rider and Westminster website. He recently moved to the New York City area and took a position at Carnegie Hall as Associate Web Producer in the Marketing Department. Music will always be his true love and in his free time he composes music and performs in a band.

-- Joe
Grace Yang

Grace Yang is a second year graduate student in the Piano Pedagogy and Performance major of Westminster Choir College. She holds a Master Degree of Music in Organ Performance from Ewha Womans University in Seoul, South Korea.

Prior to joining Westminster Choir College, Grace had 14 years experience working as Church Pianist and Organist in many churches including the largest Methodist church in the world. Grace also won the 1st Prize in Organ Performance Competition in Westminster Choir College in 1998. In summer 1995, Grace was selected as Concert Finalist Solo Performance in two international musical festivals in Geneva, Swiss and Stuttgart, Germany.

Grace currently actively involves in teaching piano in Westminster Conservatory and maintains an independent studio in Princeton, New Jersey. She is also working as part-time Church Pianist and Organist in two local churches.

-- Grace Yang