Meridian Music’s studios are filled with the finest teachers in the Indianapolis area. We have a diverse and highly qualified group of teachers who are capable of teaching students of all ages! Teachers are available Monday-Saturday. Lessons are scheduled at your convenience! Feel free to contact the teacher’s direct voicemail line with specific questions for the teacher, or you may call Hillary Blake, Director of Education at 317-805-0933 to schedule lessons.
Scroll down the page or click a category below to find an instructor.
Jennifer Campbell, piano & violin, 805-5625
Jennifer has been teaching piano and violin for more than 20 years. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Music from Ball State University and continues her piano study with renowned teacher Gerda Fisher-Kley. Jennifer also teaches Kindergarten in the Warren Township school district. Jennifer focuses her teaching on the importance of technique, fingering skills, and rhythmic accuracy through teaching classical music. She also feels it is important to allow her students to explore other types of music including pop and jazz. Jennifer strives to adjust to the personality of each student and can teach students from age 3 to adult. Jennifer was named Meridian Music Teacher of the Year in 2002.
Kathryn Carpenter, piano & voice, 805-5626
Kathryn Carpenter, piano and voice instructor, has been teaching since 2006. What a blessing and privilege it is to teach music to stdents of all ages a variety of forms of music, as well as a love for music! Kathryn’s educational background includes a B.A. in music business with a vocal performance minor, and a M.A. in music, studying jazz piano. Kathryn’s piano teaching experience includes teaching traditional piano, classical music, improvisation on hymns, jazz standards, or other popular forms, as well as chords and theory. Her vocal teaching experience includes teaching classical voice, jazz, gospel, Christian music, and music for children. Growing up in a musical family, Kathryn’s family, the Georges, ministered through music in churches, and the family continues to perform occasionally! Kathryn’s music can be viewed through CD baby, as well.
Paulo Castro, piano & voice, 805-5627
Paulo holds a Bachelor’s degree in piano from the State University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, where he specialized in chamber music and accompanying, and a Master’s degree in Choral Conducting from Butler University. He’s an active performer, clinician and teacher, in the Indianapolis area, other states and abroad, having performed and taught in Brazil, Argentina and Asia, where he was part of the Indianapolis Symphonic Choir Tour in China, performing venues like the Great Wall and the Forbidden City Hall in Beijing. He also did a tour performing Bossa Nova music throughout China, performing both solo and in collaboration with other local and international artists. Paulo works also with The Indianapolis Children’s Choir as one of the regional choir’s director and accompanist. He is also the Music Director at the S. Andrew Presbyterian Church.
Tiffany Darring, piano, 805-5621
Tiffany is a graduate of Ashworth College. She has taken piano and music theory with some of Meridian Music's finest instructors. Tiffany has been teaching piano for 18 years and has been the Music Director for JILCF for 20 years. Tiffany is a very patient teacher and has a passion for teaching students of all ages and abilities. She teaches basic skills, such as sight reading, timing, and exposure to theory through scales and chords. Tiffany believes that music should be fun, enjoyable, and a rewarding experience that should last a lifetime.
Timothy Gondola, piano
Timothy is a Macalester College graduate with a minor in music. He has been continually learning, performing and playing piano since beginning classical piano lessons at Meridian Music at five. For or the past two years, he has devoted his time to learning and mastering jazz piano. He joined the Macalester Jazz Band as pianist during his junior year. During his four semesters as part of the band, Timothy performed at the Eau Claire Jazz Festival and formed a modern jazz quartet. The quartet, Lawnmower Music, performed at the Dakota Jazz Club in Minneapolis and released a self-titled album in 2015. Just about all of Timothy’s knowledge and experience in jazz has stemmed from being immersed in the music, whether it be through small and large ensembles, deep personal practice, or simply listening. This type of engagement with music helps accelerated learning, and can be closely replicated in a studio setting. Timothy is inspired by Victor Wooten’s philosophy of music and applies principles derived from his personal learning experience to teaching. The quickest and most effective way to learn any instrument or genre, is above all, to be directly involved in the musical process: playing. Much of the jazz theory Timothy learned during his time at Macalester was already part of his musical vocabulary, although he hadn’t ever formally learned this material before. As a classically-trained pianist, Timothy is also highly interested in students who are classically-trained, and seeking to branch out into jazz. He is developing a theory/philosophy and approach to improvisation and jazz piano, based on his experience in teaching jazz to classical pianists.
Melanie Harris, piano & voice, 805-5632
Melanie Harris has taught music for many years. She has taught music in both the public school system and in a private setting. Melanie holds a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Butler University where she has also taken some graduate courses in Music Education. In addition, she has a Piano Pedagogy Certificate from Indiana State University. Professional organizations include Indiana Music Teachers Association, National Federation of Music Clubs, Indiana Piano Teachers Guild, and the American College of Musicians. Melanie is also an active church musician. She enjoys teaching students of all ages and abilities.
Laura Hedrick, piano, 805-5634
Laura has been a piano teacher for Meridian Music and IUPUI Music Academy for over 9 years. She also teaches beginning voice and is a certified Harmony Road instructor. Laura studied performing arts at Butler University with the emphasis on piano, voice, and dance which led her to be a featured performer on SeaEscape and Premier Cruise lines. Later she studied with Steve Robberson and received her Piano Pedagogy certificate from Butler. She has also studied piano with Steve Glover and Martin Marks. Laura enjoys teaching students of any age from beginning level to advanced.
Olena Ivanova, piano, 805-5636
Olena has been teaching for more than 15 years and has taught at Meridian Music since 2003. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Music Theory and History of Music and a Master’s degree in Musicology from Lviv State Academy of Music in Ukraine. Olena teaches classical music to piano students of all ages and skill levels. Olena doesn’t just teach “note reading.” She believes it is important for her students to feel the music. Olena was named Meridian Music Teacher of the Year in 2006.
Bill Kinz, piano, 805-5638
Bill is one of the original Meridian Music teachers. Bill began teaching piano as a young man and has continued with much success for many years. Bill has studied with renowned teacher Gerda Fisher-Kley. He was chosen by Gerda to teach at Meridian Music. Bill teaches students of all ages and skill levels and shows a high level of commitment to both his students and to Meridian Music.
Cindy Neil, piano, 805-5642
Cindy has been teaching piano at Meridian Music since 2003. She holds an Associates degree in the Arts from Mt. Vernon Nazarene University. Since her time at Meridian Music, Cindy has built a studio of dedicated students Her gentle approach makes her a good teacher for both young children and adults.
Drew Pace, piano & organ
Pianist, organist, and composer Drew Pace recently moved to the Indianapolis area with his wife
Amanda. He holds an M.M. in Organ Performance from the Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey where he also studied composition with Dr. Joel Phillips and conducting with Dr. Joe Miller; his audition at Westminster won first prize in both the Piano and Organ Scholarship Competition and the school-wide Scholarship Audition Competition. As a section leader in the Westminster Symphonic Choir, he performed with renowned orchestras such as the Vienna Philharmonic, the New York Philharmonic, and the Philadelphia Orchestra regularly. Prior to Westminster he studied Piano Performance and Composition at the University of Central Florida, and earned a Certificate in Sacred Music and Organ from the Saint Andrew's Conservatory under Dr. Terry Yount. As a recitalist on multiple keyboard instruments, he has performed around the United States, as a member and soloist with various symphonies and chamber ensembles, and internationally including an appearance as a guest performer at the 2012 International Orgel Meisterkurse held at Bach's Thomaskirche in Leipzig, Germany. As a commissioned composer, he and his works have been featured and performed at various festivals and concerts, with upcoming performances in 2015. He has over seven thousand hours of teaching and coaching experience, and emphasizes a proper technical foundation and careful preparation as a gateway to wherever a student's interests might lead. He teaches piano, organ, composition/theory, and Baroque and modern improvisation.
Marty Preston, piano, 805-5647
Marty has been teaching piano since 1985. She holds a Master’s degree in Music from Butler University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Butler. Marty continues to work as a pianist and organist for worship services, weddings, and other events. In addition to her classical piano studies, Marty has also studied jazz piano at Butler University. Marty is a hardworking teacher with an excellent academic background. She looks forward to sharing her knowledge with students at Meridian Music.
Judy Richards, piano, 805-5648
Judy has been teaching piano for more than 30 years. She is a member of the Indiana Piano Teacher’s Guild, the Indiana Piano Teacher’s Association, the Indiana Federation of Music, and Matinee Musicale where she serves on the board as Secretary. She is also an active pianist performing for weddings, funerals, church services and special events. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in music from Northwestern University and a Master’s degree in piano performance from Butler University. Judy’s strength is in classical music, but she does teach popular pieces and holiday music as well. Judy believes it is important to understand each student’s unique personality and assign pieces that are a good “match” for the student’s personality and aptitude. Judy is skilled at teaching beginning to advanced students. Judy encourages recital participation and expects students to be prepared and have music memorized.
Caryn Smith, piano & guitar, 805-5651
My name is Caryn Smith. I began piano lessons when I was 5 with renowned teacher Gerda Fisher-Kley and also studied piano privately with Martin Marks at Butler University. I have been teaching piano since 2000 and joined Meridian Music in 2006. I teach from age 5-adult beginning piano lessons through college level. I love teaching. I truly teach every child/adult individually based on their natural abilities, dexterity, drive, attention span, and their love of music. I view my teaching and my students’ learning as a team effort. I work hard to keep my students excited about learning music, and they in turn enjoy practicing and working hard to achieve their goals. As a result, I have most of my students from elementary school age through to when they leave for college. It is just as exciting for me to see their growth in their music abilities as it is for their parents. In addition to piano, I also teach beginning guitar and classical guitar. Feel free to contact me if you have additional questions. Thank you.
Everett Sparks, piano, 805-5652
Everett Sparks graduated from I.U. in 1981 with a Bachelor’s degree in Piano Performance. After graduation, he worked with many fine musicians and award-winning ensembles, honing his skills in various musical styles while teaching and performing extensively throughout the Midwest. For the last several years, he has focused almost exclusively on his first love, which is classical music. Everett is currently the pianist at the Journey church in Brownsburg.
Alan White, piano, 805-5657
Dr. Alan White taught piano at Meridian Music from 2003-2009, and it is a privilege to welcome him back. He has multiple degrees including a BA from Wabash College, DDS from IU Dental School, and an MM with a major in piano performance from Butler University. Dr. White’s professional experience includes concerts, parties, weddings, and a large variety of social functions plus accompaniment for vocal and instrumental performance. Dr. White was pianist for the Carmel Symphony Orchestra for 25 years. He was the organist for St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church. He is presently the accompanist for the Crawfordsville Community Chorus. Alan’s lessons focus on performance, theory, sight reading, and tone quality.
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Katie Fansler, guitar & voice, 805-5629
Katie Fansler has taught guitar for 20 years. She has a Bachelors in Music Education degree with a major in voice and a Masters of Divinity degree. Katie sang in the chorus of Starlight Musicals at Butler; she was a vocalist/dancer with the entertainment group the Spurrlows, a guitar/vocalist with Youth With A Mission, recorded an EP of original songs while living in Nashville, was the Worship band director/guitarist/lead vocalist for Horizon's Community Church in Lincoln, NE, Chapel band leader/guitarist/vocalist at TPCA, and is currently a Vineyard Community Church band member. Katie loves helping people enjoy the gift the music.
Phil Lashley, guitar & bass guitar, 805-5639
Phil Lashley began his studies of the guitar at age thirteen learning basic musical concepts such as reading standard notation, chord patterns and finger style guitar. By age sixteen he began his study of the classical guitar and was accepted into the Shortridge School of Performing Arts program in Indianapolis. In addition to the guitar he also studied music theory, sight singing and music history. After high school he was accepted into the Ball State University School of Music and received the Young Artist Award which is the highest award given by the university. After receiving his Bachelor of Music degree from Ball State, Phil taught at Illinois State and Indiana Universities teaching non-majors in a class room setting. Since 1993 Phil has taught the guitar privately teaching students of all ages, levels and styles. As a private teacher Mr. Lashley has organized recitals allowing guitar students to perform a wide variety of musical styles including: Rock(all eras), blues, jazz, country, finger style and classical. Phil has also prepared students for auditions to schools of music in universities and conservatories, many of whom have won scholarships. Phil is also a performer that plays in rock bands, traditional Irish bands and as a soloist. He appears regularly at the local Claddagh, 9 Irish Brothers, Indianapolis Irish Fest and the central library. Mr. Lashley also performs at weddings and other special events with a band and as a soloist.
Dave Morgan, guitar, 805-5641
Dave has been teaching guitar for more than 33 years and has taught at Meridian Music since 2005. He spent 12 years as a guitar professor at IUPUI. Dave holds a Bachelor’s degree in History and English Literature. He is also affiliated with the Cross Roads Blues Society. Dave teaches a wide variety of guitar styles, including blues, slide guitar, ragtime, jazz, rock, country, and some classical. Dave believes it is important to teach students to teach themselves. Dave has conducted children’s seminars and adult clinics and is confident teaching people of any age. In addition to being a wonderful teacher, Dave is also an accomplished performer and recording artist. He has recorded albums with Slippery Noodle Sound, Waterview Records, and Fretknot Records. He spent 10 years performing on Norwegian Cruise Lines. Dave has also done 5 European tours, 1 tour in South America, and 2 tours of Ireland, England, and Scotland. He was the opening act at the Chicago Blues Festival in 1996. He was one of two teachers named Meridian Music Teacher of the Year in 2006.
Jackie Schrader, 805-5649
Jackie has been teaching for more than 30 years, and she has been at Meridian Music since 1996. Jackie took private guitar and voice lessons from 1974 to 1995. Jackie is an excellent musician and specializes in classical guitar, finger picking, vocal accompaniments, and church music. Jackie believes it is important to teach music reading along with chord structure, but she ultimately wants lessons to be fun goal oriented.
Robert Wood, guitar, bass guitar, mandolin, & banjo, 805-5659
Robert has been teaching at Meridian Music since 2002. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in music from the University of Indianapolis. Robert is confident teaching all styles of music including classical, folk, blues, and rock. In addition to his expertise on the guitar, Robert has experience singing in choir and playing the piano. He has also studied music composition. Robert’s performance experience includes playing locally at weddings, clubs, and parties.
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Violin, Viola & Cello
Timothy Barnett, violin & piano, 805-5622
Timothy Barnett has been teaching violin and viola at Meridian Music since 2014 after graduating from Ball State University with a violin performance degree. He began playing professionally in 2006, regularly rehearsing and performing on violin and viola with a string quartet. Timothy now plays with the Hendricks Symphony Orchestra and the Fishers Chamber Orchestra. He also practices and performs on piano, organ, bass guitar, and double bass. He draws influence from a diversity of musicians, from Bach, Beethoven, and Debussy, to jazz musicians like Miles Davis, Thelonious Monk, and Herbie Hancock, as well as rock bands like the Mahavishnu Orchestra, Frank Zappa, and Led Zeppelin. He enjoys playing in many different environments with different people and genres, sometimes with sheet music and other times, with more creative freedom to discover original music with others.
Kati Harrison, violin & viola, 805-5633
Kati E. Harrison was born and raised in the Northwest suburbs of Chicago. She began her musical career at the tender age of 6 and by the age of 9, she decided Viola would be her defining instrument. She has toured with her viola to many countries including Germany, Austria, and Australia for the 2000 Winter Olympics. Ms. Harrison completed a Bachelors of Music degree in Music Theory and Composition from the Jordan College of the Arts at Butler University in Indianapolis, IN. While she studied at JCA, she belonged to the Butler Symphony Orchestra, JCA Composers Orchestra, and Sigma Alpha Iota Music Fraternity for Women. After Butler, Ms. Harrison completed a Masters of Music in Music Theory from The Hartt School in West Hartford, CT. Her thesis titled, “Music Structure and Rhythmic Displacement Present in Sir William Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast.” While in grad school, she actively performed for the New Music Ensemble of the Hartt School. Ms. Harrison studied viola with Bette Lebovic, Keith Conant, Roland Vamos, Csaba Erdelyi, and Michael Strauss. She has taken voice lessons with John Hacker of the Chicago Lyric Opera. Her composition teachers include: Robert Ina Winstin, Frank Felice, and Michael Schelle. She is an active performer with Marion Philharmonic Orchestra, Anderson Symphony Orchestra, Kokomo Symphony Orchestra, Danville Symphony Orchestra and Orkestra Projekt, as well as a substitute violist for many symphonies within the area. Harrison has been a guest Music Theory lecturer at St. Joseph College and Ball State University. She currently resides in Fishers, IN with her black cats Rossini and Fanny.
Lori Honer, cello, 805-5635
Dr. Lori Honer is an experienced teacher with over twenty years of cello teaching and chamber music coaching experience at the pre-college through collegiate levels. Since 2012, she has maintained a cello studio at Meridian Music. In addition, Dr. Honer enjoys an active performing career as a soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral player and has performed throughout the Midwest and Northeast. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from DePauw University, her Master’s Degree from The Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, and in 2013 she completed her doctorate in cello performance at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. Her principle teachers include Cassel Grubb, Adriana Contino, Rostislav Dubinsky, Lee Fiser, Helga Winold, Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, and William Grubb.
Nataliya Nizhalova, violin & viola, 805-5643
Nataliya Nizhalova, a violinist of Russian origin, regularly performs as a soloist, chamber and orchestral musician. She has given solo recitals in the United States, Russia, Holland and Ukraine. Ms. Nizhalova has been awarded a number of prizes from various national and international competitions. These include Second Prize in Matinee Musicale Collegiate Competition (Indianapolis, IN), First Prize in the International Competition "Art of the 21th Century" (Lisbon, Portugal), Second Prize in the International Competition "Musica-Classica" (Russia). As an active chamber musician Ms. Nizhalova has been a founding member of the Russian string quartet “Cantando” which becomes widely recognized in Russia. The quartet has a strong commitment to performing modern music and recently has been appointed as a partner of the Russian Composer Association. Her experience as an orchestral player includes working regularly with the Muncie Symphony Orchestra, Anderson Symphony Orchestra, Kokomo Symphony Society. Before coming to the USA she held the position of Assistant Concertmaster of the N. Novgorod Opera and Ballet Theatre Symphony Orchestra. She has appeared at some music festivals including National Repertory Orchestra (Colorado), Round Top Summer Music Institute (Texas), International Holland Music Session (Holland), Music in European Castles (Lithuania). Besides, she enjoys teaching violin and helping people to love music. Ms. Nizhalova holds her BM and MM from N. Novgorod State Conservatory (Russia). Currently she is working towards a Doctor of Arts degree at Ball State University where she is also a Graduate Teaching Assistant.
Dr. Youngsin Seo viola & violin
Dr. Seo, originally from South Korea, recently earned her Doctor of Music degree from Indiana University in violin performance. She holds a Master of Music degree from the same institute. She has been teaching over 10 years both major and non-major students of a wide age range, coming from different educational and cultural backgrounds. As an active orchestra player, she currently plays with Evansville Symphony Orchestra and Owensboro Symphony Orchestra.
Leah Suttner, viola & violin, 805-5653
Leah Suttner is a graduate of Carmel High School and Butler University, where she majored in Music Education. While at Butler, she played viola in the Butler Symphony Orchestra. She taught middle school orchestra at the Orchard School and Avon Intermediate Schools for five years before deciding to stay home with her twin boys. She has played viola with the Kokomo Symphony and the Anderson and Noblesville Symphonies, along with playing at many different venues around the state. Leah has taught violin and viola privately for over 10 years, and has attended the ASTA National Conference and IU’s Retreat for Professional Violin and Viola Teachers to further her teaching skills. She uses Suzuki books along with many others to help her students achieve their goals. She especially enjoys working with beginners to help them build a strong foundation for success as they grow as musicians.
Ginny Womack, violin & viola, 805-5658
Ginny Karel Womack, violinist, is a native of Evanston, Illinois, and is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. She has played in orchestras in Venezuela and Italy, and since 1988 has been a member of the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra. Over the years Ginny has accompanied such performers as Luciano Pavarotti, Sandi Patty, Rod Stewart, Michael Feinstein, and Barry Manilow, amongst others. In addition to playing in the Lockerbie String Quartet, Trio Bel Suono, and being an active studio musician, Ginny is the founder and leader of INDYKLEZ, Central Indiana’s premier klezmer band- an ensemble that performs a variety of Eastern European folk music. She also directs the Youth Klezmer Band at Congregation Beth-El Zedeck in Indianapolis, as well as the Bows and Strings Violin Choir which is comprised of her class of private violin students.
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Hillary Blake, voice 805-0933
Hillary began teaching at Meridian Music in 2001. In 2005 Hillary began directing the Music Education program and continues to maintain an active voice studio. In addition, she is a certified Harmony Road Music Instructor. Hillary holds a B.S. in Music with a concentration in voice from Manchester College. She enjoys teaching and performing all styles of music including classical, musical theatre, pop, and jazz. She has played various roles in musical theatre productions including “Katherine/Lilli Vanessi” in Kiss Me Kate and “a wife” in The King & I. Hillary has also performed as a soloist with the Manchester Symphony Orchestra and enjoys performing recitals. She currently sings with the Holy Family Episcopal Church Choir and is frequently a soloist. Hillary has also directed children’s choirs at Holy Family Episcopal Church in Fishers, IN, Northminster Presbyterian Church in Indianapolis, and at Culver Summer Camps in Culver, Indiana. Hillary enjoys teaching students of all ages!
Lisa Breitwieser, voice
Lisa started singing professionally at the age of 12 when she recorded a re-recording of Alice In Wonderland album for Disney Productions, produced in Indianapolis downtown, at what was Music Mother Studio's on Illinois Street. She instantly fell in love with studio recording. She was one of 10 children selected by her music teacher in middle school, for this project. Auditions were held statewide. Lisa then started singing/recording commercials, "jingles" singing for locally and regionally broadcast :30 and :60 radio and television commercials. In high school, she continued singing for studio productions and became a member of the Carmel Ambassadors throughout high school, as well as performing in theatrical productions. She began light voice training in middle school and by the end of high school, was training at Jordan School of Music for her audition to the IU School of Music as well as the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, in which she was offered admission to both schools. Lisa studied at IU school of Music (now Jacobs School of Music); Bloomington in which she trained in Vocal Performance, Opera & Jazz Studies with a secondary study in piano/keyboards. She began performing in Indianapolis several times a week with a band, so she transferred to Butler University and finished a degree in Journalism as well. She graduated in 1987 with a B.A. in Journalism and Music. However, it was Music that was and still is, her main source of income. From performing in a popular private local band since 1986, to recording down in Nashville, TN on music row, to being played on broadcast radio and also internet jazz stations, Lisa is performing locally on an average of 3-4 nights per week, in her own band, Baldwin2Baldwin Smooth Jazz. She currently performs every Sunday night at Rick's Cafe Boatyard, 2-3 Friday nights per month at Sullivan's Steakhouse, she appears frequently at Georgia Reese's Southern Table North and Downtown, in the Cafe at Kroger (Carmel); District Market (Carmel) lounge, Vireli's Fine Dining, and other upscale venues. She and her son both performed at the talent extravaganza for The Palladium in Carmel, grand opening 5 years ago. To sum it up, she has over 30 years of professional experience. She works with many local and regional booking agencies as well, performing and recommending other acts. Lisa worked with her son and helped him get connected locally to start performing at the age of 13, he is a guitarist, vocalist, songwriter. He is now 19 and living in Los Angeles, performing regularly and recording his CD with a team of musicians who have connections to major record labels. She coached him and connected him and his band members with local contacts who booked them and managed them, until they all graduated and either went to music school, or started a career in music. She also mentored high school aged students she performed with, in the St. Luke's Later Praise and Worship band. She has coached part-time for those, who want to take their talent a step further. Concentration is "coaching for today's type real-world auditions and professional performances" and also can help the young professionals get connected in the community. "At the end of the day, when your child or person you've mentored nails it [the audition or performance] there isn't any better feeling in the world. I experience every emotion because I've been there. Now it's my time to give back. I'd like to share what I know now, that I desperately needed to know when I was younger." – Lisa Breitwieser
Vandi Enzor, voice & piano
Vandi Enzor recently moved back to the Indianapolis area after finishing a Master of Music in Vocal Performance at the University of Akron where she studied with Dr. Laurie Lashbrook. She has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theatre from Shorter University. Vandi is classically trained in voice and piano and has significant performing and teaching experience. Having performance experience in multiple genres including opera, film, straight theater, musical theater, big band/swing, jazz, country, pop, rock, sacred music, and contemporary Christian, Vandi is comfortable teaching a wide range of musical genres. She has worked with students of all ages and skill levels and offers piano and voice lessons, audition techniques and theater coaching, and musical skills lessons. As part of Vandi’s voice studio, you will have the opportunity to participate in regular studio classes and educational workshops and will be able to perform in a studio recital three times per year. Some of Vandi’s recent performances have been in Carmel, Indiana as a soloist and in the musical duo, Bye Girls, in concert settings, with the University of Akron’s Opera Lyric Theater in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel (Gretel), singing Spanish folk songs with the University of Akron’s Guitar Ensemble, performing as a soloist in the University of Akron’s commencement ceremonies, and leading, coordinating, and performing with the contemporary service band at Advent Lutheran Church in Uniontown, Ohio. Some of Vandi’s favorite performances have been The Worst One Ever (Jennifer), Die Fledermaus (Rosalinda), Bastien and Bastienna (Bastienna), La Rondine (Magda), Cendrillon (Le Fee), and Penelope’s Revenge (Penelope). Vandi is thrilled to be working at the Meridian Music School and is excited to meet you!
Tammany Shankle, voice & piano, 805-5650
Tammany Harding has been teaching voice at Meridian Music since 2006. Tammany has had experience working with children in various environments, but she especially enjoys working with young musicians. She holds a Bachelor of Music Education for the University of Maine and a Master of Music in Voice Performance from Butler University. While at Butler, Tammany taught private lessons for the Butler Community Arts School. In addition to teaching, Tammany enjoys performing. While at the University of Maine, she performed with the University Singers, Athena Consort, the Oratorio Society, and the U. Maine Opera Workshop. She has also performed with the Gilbert and Sullivan Society of Hancock County, Penobscot Theatre Company, Maine Shakespeare Festival, and Bangor Community Theatre. During her tenure at Butler, Tammany performed with Butler Lyric Theatre and the JCFA Composers’ Orchestra, including premier performances of works written specifically for her. She also sang in JCFA’s collaborative production of Philip Glass’s The Photographer. Tammany was the soprano section leader at Zion Evangelical United Church of Christ in Indianapolis from 2004-2008. Currently, she is the director of the Celebration Choir (grades K-2_ and the soprano section leader at Northminster Presbyterian Church in Broad Ripple. In addition to teaching voice, Tammany teaches piano.
She specializes in teaching the young beginner.
Jane West, voice & piano, 805-5656
Jane West has more than 30 years performing and teaching experience. She has Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Vocal Performance from Butler University and has performed in Opera, Oratorio and Musical Theater throughout the State of Indiana and the Baltic Countries with the Indianapolis Opera Company, the Indiana Opera Theater, Indianapolis Civic Theater, Anderson Summer Music Festival and the Christian Theological Seminary Theater to name a few. However, she found her true passion 30 years ago when she was tapped to teach private voice and piano lessons in the IPS Performing Arts Magnet. Since then she has taught those subjects plus Music Theory and Piano Keyboard Class in grades 5 through 12 and also served on the Music Faculty at now, Marian University. Jane especially enjoys helping students (of all ages) find their dramatic center enabling them to become the performers they dream they can be. Her teaching philosophy is twofold: A) Music is a language. In order to speak it, one must be able to read it! B) Music (to many) is life, itself. The student of music must be allowed to have fun with learning. Students should be encouraged, challenged, and above all nurtured in this magnificent relationship with music!
Brass & Woodwinds
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Ryan Caldwell, bassoon, oboe, clarinet, & saxophone, 805-5624
Ryan has taught bassoon and oboe since 1998, both privately and in group contexts. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Illinois Wesleyan University in music composition and performance (major in bassoon, minor in oboe) and a Master of Music degree from Indiana University in bassoon performance. He has been second bassoonist with the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic since 2005 and principal bassoonist with the Carmel Symphony Orchestra since 2007.
Joe Faith, clarinet, saxophone, flute, voice, & piano, 805-5628
Joe comes to Meridian Music with a diverse background in Music. Joe has a Bachelor’s degree in clarinet performance from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, OK and a Master’s degree in clarinet performance from Indiana State University. Not only is Joe an accomplished clarinet soloist, he is also a gifted tenor. He has experience teaching students of all ages and has been a woodwind instructor at Vincennes University. He is also an experienced church musician having served as Minister of Music at various churches. Joe also plays several instruments, including Celtic harp, recorder, trumpet, French horn, and cello.
Katherine Peters, clarinet, saxophone, flute & piano, 805-5645
Katherine comes to Meridian Music with a wealth of experience as a teacher and musician. Katherine has a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from the University of South Florida. She has experience teaching both privately and in the classroom. Katherine has been affiliated with the following organizations: International Clarinet Association, Florida Music Educator’s Association, Music Educators’ National Conference, National Dan’s List, and Golden Key Honor Society. Katherine also has experience as a pianist, composer, and arranger.
Steve Petry, brass, piano & voice, 805-5646
Steve has taught at Meridian Music since 1990. In 2007 Steve was named Meridian Music Teacher of the Year. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from The University of Indianapolis. He has also taken courses at the Master’s level from Indiana University and Butler University. He has studied with I.S.O. musicians and top-notch University professors. Steve enjoys all music, but especially loves classical, musical theater, and film music. Steve sees himself as an “encourager” and believes that music should be taught as a discipline but should be enjoyable at the same time. Steve plays with the Covenant Symphony Orchestra of East 91st Street Christian Church and has sung with the Indianapolis Symphonic Choir. Steve has enjoyed working at Meridian Music because of the positive environment for teachers and students.
Jessica Robinson, bassoon & oboe
From Indianapolis, oboist and English horn player Jessica Robinson received her master’s in orchestral performance from Mannes College of Music studying with the New York Philharmonic’s Assistant Principal Oboist, Sherry Sylar. She holds her bachelor’s in oboe performance with a psychology minor from Butler University where she studied with Dr. Malcolm W. Smith. She has appeared with the Muncie Symphony, Richmond County Orchestra, International Chamber Orchestra of America, and the Vocal Production NYC. She has been an Artist-in-Residence at New York City’s International House and has performed as both a chamber and orchestral musician in the Ameropa Chamber Music Festival, Prague, and at the Finger Lakes Student Chamber Music Festival in New York. Jessica served as principal oboist in the Doctor’s Orchestral Society of New York, Mannes Orchestra, and Butler Symphony Orchestra. Jessica has had extensive training in solo works as well as orchestral performance of opera, ballet, chamber, and contemporary music. Currently she teaches beginning double reed classes, holds a private studio, and is serving as a performance Graduate Assistant at Ball State University.
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Brett Wiscons, songwriting
Brett Wiscons is a graduate of Marian University of Indianapolis and an ASCAP songwriter based in Zionsville, IN. His latest release, The Heineken Sessions (Deluxe), was released on Captain Beardo Records and produced by two-time Grammy winner Mark Bryan of Hootie & The Blowfish. Brett’s music has been heard on AAA radio, Australian television, and the Tony Kornheiser Show. He’s shared a bill with Zac Brown, Darius Rucker, Trace Adkins, Taylor Hicks, Maia Sharp, Days of the New, Seven Mary Three, The Why Store, Carl Storie, Joe Firstman, Brian Vander Ark of The Verve Pipe, and Katy Perry.
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Joyce Buchholz, harp, & piano, 805-5623
Joyce has been teaching music for many years. She holds a B.S. in harp performance from Indiana University of Bloomington and an M.B.A. from Indiana Wesleyan. In addition to teaching piano and harp, Joyce is also a certified Harmony Road instructor. Not only is she a highly qualified teacher, but she is also a certified harp technician. Joyce is affiliated with the Folk Harp Society, American Harp Society, the World Harp Congress, and American String Teachers Association. She also plays with the Indianapolis Philharmonic Orchestra. Joyce believes that people of all ages can learn music. She also believes that music can “feed your soul like few things can.” Joyce is a classically trained musician, but she enjoys performing and teaching all styles of music including pop music and jazz.
Erzsébet Gaál Rinné, harp, piano, & flute, 805-5630
Dr. Erzsébet Gaál Rinné is a Hungarian-American harpist, a Kodály pedagogue, and a researcher in physical wellness for musicians. She has given concerts all across Europe and America. She is a recipient of the Pro Artibus Award that she has received from the Artisjus Foundation for promoting Hungarian contemporary music abroad. Dr. Rinné has received numerous invitations to share her expertise, for example, at the fifth and eighth World Harp Congresses in Copenhagen, Denmark and in Geneva, Switzerland; The American String Teacher Association National Conferences in Columbus, OH, Dallas, TX, and in Kansas City, MO; Third International Conference on Arts and Humanities in Honolulu, Hawaii; The Phenomenon of Singing International Symposium V, in Newfoundland, Canada; and the Seventeenth International Kodály Symposium in Leicester, England. Her professional work can be heard on her solo harp CD recording Harpa Hungarica, and seen on her DVD program Harp Playing for Life. Dr. Rinné is an honor graduate of the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music, Budapest, Hungary, holding a Doctor of Music degree from Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana. She is a member of the faculty at the University of Evansville, Evansville, IN and Meridian Music, Carmel, IN.