Music Faculty

Li-Ly Chang

Piano (BM, MM)

Pianist, composer, and chamber musician. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from National Taiwan University, her Master of Music in Piano & Composition from University Of Texas. She also did special graduate studies at Peabody Conservatory of Music in piano, composition and chamber music. Ms. Chang has studied with Sacha Gorodnitzki, Leon Fleisher, Sequeira Costa, Fernando Laires, Walter Hautzig, Jack Winerock and Ming Tcherepnin.

She has received many awards, grants, and has given recitals, lecture recitals, workshops and performed concertos in Asia, Europe and the U.S.

Her performance includes the Dame Myra Hess Series, Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Roosevelt Hall, Trinity Church Series, Shriver Hall and Strathmore Hall. She has given master classes and lecture recitals in George Washington University, Savannah on Stage Festival, Mannes School of Music, Delaware State College, Levine School of Music, McDaniel College, La Plata University, Georgetown University and New England Conservatory, U.S. State Department, World Piano Pedagogy Conference,.

An active chamber musician, she has performed with members of National Symphony, Baltimore symphony, National Philharmonic Orchestra, Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, White House Orchestra, Army Band. She is in constant demand for adjudication. She has judged in the Chamber Music Foundation of New England in Carnegie Hall and American Asian Music Society in New Jersey. This August she is invited to perform at the Shanghai International Youth Cultural and Arts Festival 2011 in Shanghai, China.

She loves gardening and feels teaching is like working on the garden, waiting patiently for the plant to grow and bear fruit. From sewing the seeds, watching it starts to grow is like watching the students grow & progress. It is such a joy to her. Her students have won solo, ensemble and concerto competitions at Laurel, Columbia, Montgomery County, Maryland State Music Teachers Asso. & International Competitions. Thus they have played at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, Carnegie Hall, Mekin Hall, The Opera Ho in NY. She often brings students to senior homes, Art galleries, Brookside Garden to perform, teaches them how to share their talent by serving the community at a young age.

She was a music panelist for the Maryland State Arts Council and is the Director of the International Young Artist Piano Competition that she founded in 1985.Now the IYAPC is in all States and overseas such as Germany, France, Singapore, China, Taiwan, with International board members and juries. In 1995 she founded the Musical Arts International Inc.

Sophie Chang

Cello (BA, MM)

Sophie Chang holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Cello Performance from Ithaca College and a Master’s Degree in Performance from the University of Tennessee Knoxville, where she was a graduate teaching assistant. She is trained through Suzuki Book 3 and teaches Suzuki and traditional cello lessons. She has taught in various group and private settings in the United States and Tanzania as part of the Daraja Music Initiative. As a performer she attended the Brevard Music Institute and the Bowdoin International Music Festivals and was principal of the University of Tennessee Symphony Orchestra, the Ithaca College Chamber Orchestra, and the Avanti Masterworks Festival orchestra.

David Chentian

Cello (BM, MM)

David Chentian has performed as a soloist, recitalist, symphony orchestra musician and chamber musician across North America and Asia, including various performances at Strathmore music center, Altria Theater, Strand-Capital music center, Roland Convention Center, Cathedral of Incarnation, Falls Church Episcopal. He is a member of several professional symphony orchestras in the DC and Baltimore region, including Richmond Symphony, National Philharmonic, York Symphony, Mid-Atlantic Symphony, and Tysons McLean Orchestra. He was interviewed by Epoch time newspaper and has recognized by the Epoch Time for his “significant achievements as a brilliant cellist”.

David is an active passionate musician, string specialist, and music educator in the DC-Baltimore area. He has served as String coach at the East County string program by Strathmore & Maryland Classic Youth Orchestra, String coach at Capitol Symphonic Youth Orchestra, Cello Teaching Artist at Mason Arts Academy, Cello instructor at Washington DC Levine Music camp, Competition judge of the NVMTA youth string concerto competition, Virginia Lions District Music Scholarship Competition and Fairfax Solo & Ensemble music festival. David has studied the Suzuki string method from the Peabody Institute. Several of David’s students participate at DC area Youth orchestras. David’s several students won the American Protégé International Piano& String Competition 2019 First Award, Washington Performing Arts Feder Competition First Award, York symphony Youth concerto competition winner. David received certification from competition for extraordinary dedication and achievement in the field of teaching. David commends a music style that is very clean, accurate and elegant. Not only did he have a natural flair and wonderful techniques, but also he has the ability and intention of a true artist, expressing himself in a unique way that the audience is grasped and touched.

David has conducted the Banneker middle school Youth string orchestra and Rockville Evangelical Mission Youth string orchestra. He has several years conducing experience and regularly leads string sectionals for Youth orchestra concerts. David completed his Bachelor of Music degree with academic honors from the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, he received his Master of Music degree and Graduate performance degree from the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University. David has attended many music festivals throughout the United States on full scholarship and worked with many renowned conductors and cellists including Carl St. Clare, Hans Graf, Leon Fleisher, Marin Alsop. He was selected to be the principal cellist for TMF/ AMF orchestra concerts. He has a wide range of experience playing in orchestra and as a soloist. He enjoys sharing the joy of music through performing and teaching.

Nayoon Choi

Flute (BM, MM)

Nayoon Choi is an active flutist, teacher, and freelancer in the Northern Virginia and Washington, DC areas.  Ms. Choi has over fifteen years of experience to teach the flute and piccolo in London, South Korea, and the USA. She teaches various skill levels from beginner to advanced and students of all ages in both private and group lessons. Her students have won various competitions and have continued their studies at the university level. Recently she served as adjunct professor at George Mason University to teach music fundamentals class and gave a series of performances in Vienna, Austria.
Ms. Choi has given solo recitals throughout Korea, London, and the USA, and toured Spain and the UK as a member of the Meridian Trio for flute, viola and harp. She has won concerto competitions at George Mason University and Illinois State University, and 2nd prize in the North-London Chamber Festival. Ms. Choi made her solo debut with Masan Youth Symphony Orchestra in South Korea at the age 13. She has performed in numerous master classes with Sebastian Bell, Andras Adorjan, Susan Milan, Wissam Boustany, Jeffrey Khaner, and Christina Jennings. Her formal teachers include Young Kim, Susan Milan, Paul Edmund-Davies, Jamie Martin, Wissam Boustany, and Dr. Kimberly Risinger.
Ms. Choi earned her Bachelor of Music degree from the Royal College of Music in London, her Postgraduate Diploma from the Trinity College of Music, also in London, and her Master of Music degree in flute performance from Illinois State University. Currently she is a doctoral candidate at George Mason University concentrating in flute performance.

Maribeth Frank

Violin, Viola (BM, MM)

Maribeth Frank began her violin studies at the age of three at the New School of Music in Philadelphia. She continued on to study at many pre-eminent schools including the Meadowmount School of Music, North Carolina School for the Arts and the University of Houston under the tutelage of many well-known teachers including Ivan Galamian, Jascha Brodsky, Linda Cerone, and Elaine Richey. While living in Houston, Texas she played with the major Orchestras in the area, including the Houston Symphony, Houston Ballet, and Houston Grand Opera Orchestras, as well as enjoying a fulfilling career of private teaching. Since moving to the Northern Virginia area in Oct. 2002, she has played as Concertmaster with the Annapolis Symphony as well as a member of the Washington Ballet, Richmond Symphony, and Alexandria Symphony Orchestras as well as teaching extensively at her private studios.

Dr. Luis Gonzalez

Piano (DMA)

Dr. Luis Gonzalez received his B.M and Licensure in Piano Performance from the University of Costa Rica and M.M. in Piano Performance from the University of New Orleans. He also earned a M.M in Collaborative Piano from Florida State University and D.M.A in Piano performance and Pedagogy and Literature from James Madison University.

Dr. Gonzalez was a concerto competition finalist at U.C.R (1985) and JMU (2008). Former piano faculty and staff accompanist at U.C.R. and the National Institute of Music in Costa Rica. He was also a founder member of Young Chamber Musicians in San Jose, Costa Rica.

Dr. Gonzalez was an Organist for the Metropolitan Choir at the National Cathedral in San Jose. He is currently an adjunct faculty at Mary Baldwin College. He also participated in the Early Music Workshops at Oberlin’s Baroque Performance Institute, Amherst Winter Baroque, and Virginia Baroque Academy. He performed a Solo and collaborative recitals in Costa Rica, El Salvador and the United States. He also participated in the Research on the use of cinematic imagery in piano pedagogy.

Pierre Guertin

Piano, Clarinet, Flute, Saxophone, Trumpet (BM)

New to Virginia from the New York area, Pierre Guertin is a performer, private teacher and freelance artist on Saxophone, Clarinet, Flute, and Trumpet. Having 35 years of teaching experience, his approach inspires and motivates through a creative, practical and efficient methodology, expediting the learning process easily for students of all technical levels and musical styles.

Mr. Guertin has had numerous instrumental and vocal concert appearances which include performances with Keith Richards, Jose Feliciano and Jazz Great Hank Mobley, back-up singer for Pete Seeger, opening for the rock bands ‘YES’ and ‘The Village People’, the Opening Ceremonies for the Provincial Parliament of Ontario (Canada), the US Coast Guard Base, Flotilla 73, the World Peace Center (NYC), the ANZAC Commemoration Service, British Empire Building, Rockefeller Center (NYC), the 150th Anniversary of ‘Taps’, and the J.F.K. Assassination 50th Anniversary Commemoration (Arlington Cemetery, VA). He also collaborated with the Blues Music Award Album of the Year Nominee, Paul Gabriel-2014, and has been an On-Air Personality with various radio stations.

Mr. Guertin studied Music Education at the University of Florida, and after touring with Florida State Theater’s production of “Ain’t Misbehavin” playing saxophone and clarinet, moved to the New York area for the last 25 years working with world-renowned Gospel singer Georgia Louis accompanying her on Piano and Saxophone (Ms. Louis was the first black woman to host a nationally syndicated television show, “TV Gospel Time” in the 1960’s and was named Louis Armstrong’s “Musical God-Child”). He also studied voice with Dr. William H. Collins, Jr. and Robert LaRocco, both of New York City and has had extensive experience as a Gospel and Jazz vocal/instrumental soloist and accompanist.

Dr. Elizabeth Hill

Piano (MM)

Pianist, Elizabeth G. Hill, DMA, is an accomplished soloist, chamber musician, orchestral pianist, and educator. Her concert appearances in the Washington, DC area include performances for the Embassy Concert Series, the Arts Club of Washington, and the Lyceum. She has most recently performed internationally in Freiburg, Wörlitz, and Zwickau, Germany.

After receiving her early musical training in her hometown, Anchorage, Alaska, Elizabeth earned the Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Performance through the Program for the Exceptionally Gifted at Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, VA. Elizabeth was then awarded a full assistantship to attend James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA, where she earned her Master of Music degree in Piano Performance. As a master’s student, Elizabeth’s interest in contemporary music lead to performances of works by John Hillard, Liviu Marinescu, and the premier of the cycle “Mosaics,” for solo piano, by Tim Rumsey.

In 2015, Elizabeth graduated from The Catholic University of America, in Washington, DC, attaining the Doctorate in Musical Arts in Chamber Music. As a doctoral student, her enjoyment in presenting lecture recitals led to presentations on solo piano and chamber works by numerous composers including Hayden, Janáček, and Mieczysław Weinberg. Her most recent topic “Chamber Music in Exile” is an exploration of the intimate musical narratives composed by émigré composers of the World War II era. Elizabeth’s principle instructors of solo and collaborative piano include Drs. Lise Keiter, Eric Ruple, Gabriel Dobner, and Ralitza Patcheva. She has performed in masterclasses with Jean-Paul Sevilla, Charles Fisher, Andrew Willis, and Leonard Hokanson. In addition to her performing career, Elizabeth maintains a successful studio of private students, and has enjoyed teaching in the Washington, DC area since 2008.

Tae Ho Hwang

Clarinet, Saxophone (BM)

As a passionate performer and educator, Tae Ho Hwang is dedicated to advancing the saxophone repertoire by exposing new works to audiences and inspiring future generations. An advocate of expanding the saxophone repertoire, Tae Ho Hwang often commissions and performs music of living composers. This coming year, he plans to premiere works by composers Nicholas Bentz, Elliott Grabill, Laura Spence, and Sam Torres. Tae has performed works of world-renowned composers such as William Albright, Luciano Berio, Edison Denisov, and Robert Muczynski.

In 2015, Tae won the annual Concerto Competition at the University of Delaware and performed, as a soloist, Alexander Glazunov’s Concerto for Saxophone and Orchestra with the University’s Symphony Orchestra. In recital, Tae has performed throughout the Mid-Atlantic area, in cities like Philadelphia, Baltimore, Annapolis, and Newark, Delaware since 2014. In addition, Tae has participated in Master Classes presented by distinguished saxophonists like Timothy McAllister, Joseph Lulloff, Timothy Roberts, Ray Ricker, as well as saxophone quartets like Musato Kumoi Quartet, Donald Sinta Quartet, and New Thread Quartet. In concerts, Tae has been involved with ensembles that have toured throughout Taipei, Taiwan for the International Band and Orchestra Conference, Washington D.C., Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia.

An advocate of education, Tae Ho Hwang has been teaching a variety of subjects to students of different ages and backgrounds for five years. Tae earned a degree in Music Education from the University of Delaware in 2016, where he is certified to teach grades K-12 at public schools in Maryland and Delaware. Tae has also been teaching private lessons since 2012.

Currently, Tae Ho Hwang is working towards a Master’s Degree in Saxophone Performance and Pedagogy at the Peabody Conservatory of The Johns Hopkins University, where he is studying with renowned saxophonist, Gary Louie. Tae also is a private instructor around the Baltimore area, a substitute teacher for the Baltimore County Public School System, and a teaching assistant for the OrchKids Program directed by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.

Youngik Jang

Guitar, Piano (BM, MM)

Korean guitarist and pianist Youngik Jang has been proving his musical passion at numerous music festivals, mainly in Maryland, New York, Virginia, and the District of Columbia. Starting with performance at “Charlie Byrd Memorial Scholarship series at Mainstay” in Rock Hall, Maryland, Youngik has received many performance opportunities, which became even more augmented with his recent achievement of winning second prize at Edwin H. & Leigh W. Schadt String Competition in Allentown, Pennsylvania. Youngik is also internationally active and he received the invitation at Sungshin Women University in South Korea as guest artist.

Youngik’s first musical experience started at the age of four by learning piano, then classical guitar starting from the age of ten. With the decision of pursuing a musical career, Youngik started to perform recitals while attending “Yewon Art School” in South Korea, with achieving first prize at “Seoul Baroque Competition” under the guidance of the alumni of Peabody Conservatory, Byeong-woo Lee. With his sagacious advice, Youngik decided to study abroad in United States of America, and attended “Idyllwild Arts Academy” in Idyllwild, California while studying classical guitar from Kenton Youngstrom. Youngik later attended Peabody Conservatory in the studio of Julian Gray, with enormous scholarship award, and pursued a Bachelor of Music and Master of Music with Teaching Assistant offer.

Besides being a soloist, Youngik is also active in an ensemble. His guitar quartet performed and received positive acknowledgement at Guitar Foundation of America in New York Regional Symposium in 2012 and 2014. Furthermore, Youngik’s quartet also won the “Small Ensemble Showcase” competition at Guitar Foundation of America in Denver, Colorado in 2016.

Youngik has also been participating in the field of composition. He performed his composition at “Computer Music Consort” in 2014 at Peabody Conservatory, and worked as film scoring engineer in the South Korean movie industry since 2012 with several great hit movies: ‘Ode to My Father,’ ‘The Face Reader,’ ‘Perfect Number,’ and ‘The Neighbors.’

Youngik has played the piano since the age of four, as well as teaching piano. He involved piano performance in many of the concerts he has given in the United States and Canada. Additionally, he composed piano pieces during his film scoring experience in Korea.

Youngik is currently active as a soloist and chamber artist since being a member of Phoenix Arts Management in 2014, and concentrating on performance and composition while pursuing a Doctoral of Musical Art (DMA) at Shenandoah University with full-scholarship and Teaching Assistant position.

Colin Johnson

Voice (BM, MM)

Known for his warm resonant voice, Colin B. Johnson, bass-baritone, is a dynamic educator, performer and researcher. At Shenandoah Conservatory, he served as a post-masters teaching assistant for the past three years while pursuing a doctorate in voice pedagogy. Colin earnestly teaches private voice lessons in a variety of genres including both classical and contemporary commercial music. His approachable but passionate style generates a fun collaborative environment.

As a performer, he has been heard in many opera houses and theatres across the country as well as in Germany and Italy. In 2005, Colin had the honor of performing with Stephanie Blythe in Opera Colorado’s production of Handel’s opera Guilio Caesare. Another performing highlight was singing at Carnegie Hall in 2008 as the Norman Carlberg Award Winner in the Liederkranz Foundation. His roles include Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro, Leporello in Don Giovanni, Dr. Dulcamara in L’elisir d’amore, Méphistophélès in Faust, Caspar in Der Freischütz, and Sam in Trouble in Tahiti. He has performed with such opera companies as Opera Lancaster, Opera Naples, Des Moines Metro Opera, Opera Colorado, Connecticut Opera and Sarasota Opera. His other concert works include Baritone Soloist in Brahms’ Requiem, Elijah in Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bass Soloist in Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, and Handel’s Messiah. Colin had the honor of performing the bass solo in Verdi’s Requiem in Lancaster, Pennsylvannia. Colin is also a devoted Lieder singer having performed Schubert’s Winterreise, Schumann’s Dichterliebe and Vier erneste Gesänge by Brahms.

He holds a Masters of Music in voice pedagogy from Shenandoah Conservatory and Bachelor of Music in voice performance from the University of Iowa. Colin’s research interests include applying motor learning strategies to the singing voice studio as well as vocal tract acoustics. This past June, Colin presented research on motor learning feedback in the singing voice studio at the Voice Symposium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He also is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), Pan American Vocology Association (PAVA) and has completed the first session of the Summer Vocology Institute with renown voice researcher and educator Dr. Ingo Titze.  

Soo Kim

Piano (BM)

Ms.Soo Y. Kim graduated Ewha Womens’ University in Seoul, S.Korea and she studied both Musical Composition and Economics. She grew up and lived in musical family. Her sister is very dedicated organist in S.Korea and she has a lot of relatives who majored in music.

She has been teaching piano over 10 years at various locations including her home studio and piano accompaniment experience at local churches. She also teaches early childhood music at local preschool. She is a active member of NVMTA (Northern Virginia Music Teachers Associations) and many of her students have been participating local piano festivals and competitions.

In her spare time, she likes to watch movies and compose her own children’s songs.

Sylvia Lim

Violin, Viola (BM, MM)

Sylvia Lim has had the honor of performing for a variety of audiences in various countries such as Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Thailand, Bolivia, The Dominican Republic, Costa Rica and Italy.

She began her violin studies at age six with Olga Khroulevitch. In 2007, she was the only violinist to be admitted into the National Symphony Orchestra Youth Fellowship program where she continued her studies with Ricardo Cyncynates; Assistant Concertmaster of the National Symphony Orchestra. She obtained her Bachelors of Music degree in Violin Performance from the University of Maryland studying with Dr. James Stern. She continued her graduate studies with a Performance Certificate from Ohio University.  Other notable teachers and mentors include Jody Gatwood; Concertmaster Emeritus of the National Philharmonic Orchestra and Mrs. Jennifer Kim, first violinist in the National Symphony Orchestra. For her Masters, she was awarded with a full scholarship and assistantship and was in the Klinder Graduate String Quartet.

Recently, she graduated from Ohio University, obtaining her Masters degree in Violin Performance studying with Dr. Dawn Wohn.

Sylvia has had lessons and master classes with Arnold Steinhardt of the Guarneri String Quartet, David Kim; Concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra, Nurit Bar-Josef; Concertmaster of the National Symphony Orchestra, Pamela Hentges; Principle Second violinist of the National Symphony Orchestra; Mr. Joel Smirnoff, Dr. Caroline Chin and Lara St. John. At age fifteen, she performed for world renown Russian conductor and violinist, Vladimir Spivakov.  She has performed in concert halls such as the Kennedy Center Terrace Theatre, Millennium stage as well as Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall. She has performed in the Ohio Valley Symphony Orchestra as well as the Huntington Symphony Orchestra.  She has attended and performed at the International Music Festival of the Adriatic in Italy as well as Aria International Summer Academy.

Since 2004, Sylvia and has been an active music missionary working with non-profit organizations like The New Life Foundation, visiting various countries and sharing the gospel with music.  Her other interests include art, travel, animals and watching her favorite basketball teams, the Golden State Warriors and the Washington Wizards.

Dr. You Jin Park

Piano (DMA)

Dr. You Jin Park, pianist, accompanist, and music teacher, was born in Busan, South Korea. She completed her B.M. and M.M. in piano performance at Dong-A University (Busan, South Korea), where she was honored for the top GPA scores for both of her degrees. Dr. Park was awarded five years of full scholarships, while also serving as the educational assistant teacher within the Department of Music. She then completed her doctoral degree (D. M. A.) in piano performance at Shenandoah Conservatory in Winchester, Virginia, where she performed as the winner of Bach-Handel Competition and the Student Soloists Competition. In 2016, she started her professional teaching career at Washington University of Virginia as adjunct faculty. To enhance and extend her musicianship, Dr. Park began the Artist Graduate Certificate Program in piano performance at George Mason University where she performed at the Arts by George Showcase (2016), Honors Recital (2018), and at various Chamber Music Recitals (2016, 2018) while studying with Professor Anna Balakerskaia. In 2017, she was chosen as semi-finalist of American-Liszt International Piano Competition and went on to perform at Ohio State University. Dr. Park has been teaching over ten years in her private studio in addition to being an active member of MTNA (Music Teachers National Association) in both Northern Virginia and the Shenandoah Valley Association. Starting in 2014, as the conductor and accompanist of the Hepzibah Youth Community Outreach Club, Dr. Park, along with its youth volunteers, goes out & performs in regional community centers. For serving the organization, she received The President’s Volunteer Service Award in 2016-2017 (Silver) and 2015 (Bronze).

Fumiko Reeder

Piano (BM)

Member of National Guild of Piano Teachers National Honor Roll, Mrs. Reeder has over 44 years of experience of private piano teaching, and incorporates theory and ear training instruction into the lessons. She enjoys teaching students of all ages.  Her students have gone on to study with world renowned piano teachers, such as Emilio Del Rosario at Music Institute of Chicago, and Menaham Pressler at Indiana University School of Music. They have also received many awards from National Guild of Piano Teachers, MTNA, Society of American Musicians, National ARTS Recognition Program, and many regional and national competitions.

Dr. Steffany Shock

Violin, Viola (MM, DMA)

Steffany Shock, a native of Toledo, Ohio, began her musical studies on the violin through a public school string program. At the age of 14 she joined the violin section of the Bowling Green (Ohio) Symphony Orchestra and went on to play in many other orchestras in the area, including the University of Toledo Orchestra, the Firelands Symphony Orchestra, and the Lima Symphony Orchestra. She received her Bachelor of Music from Bowling Green State University, where she studied with Penny Thompson Kruse. She then received her Master of Music from the Pennsylvania State University, where she studied with James Lyon. She recently received her Doctorate of Music from James Madison University, where she studied with Wanchi Huang. Steffany currently performs in the violin sections of the National String Symphonia, the McLean Orchestra, the Huntington Symphony Orchestra, and the Northern Tier Symphony Orchestra.

Ruei-hwa Shyu

Piano (BA, MM)

Mrs. Shyu graduated from Tunghai University from her native country Taiwan. She also earned a certificate from Royal College of Music, London and two Master of Music degrees from Boston University, one in piano performance and one in organ performance.

As a chamber player, pianist and organist she has performed in Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, and Rockville MD.

She has been teaching piano for years with great success. She has also taught group classes for Yamaha Music School and Music for Young Children. In the past, she served as the music director/ organist/pianist at Rockville Presbyterian Church and organist/pianist at Living Faith Lutheran Church in Rockville MD.  And St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Landover Hill MD. Currently, she is the organist/pianist at Rockville United Methodist Church, Rockville MD.

She has a great passion for performing and teaching. In her spare time, she enjoys a game of tennis and line dancing.

Sonia Yon

Voice, Theater (BM, MM)

Ms. Sonia H. Yon graduated with Bachelors of Music from Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea and Masters of Music from Milano Giuseppe Verdi Conservatorio di Music, Milan, Italy.

She started singing at age three and gave her first singing performance at the age of five, the same age she began studying piano.  She appreciates her mother for supporting her early start in music. When she was in Italy, she won many international competitions. She received 1st prize at the Flaviano Labo international competition, and 3rd prize at the Mario Basiola international competition;  she also won prizes at Imperia, Katia Ricciarelli, Vinas, Viotti, Angelica Catalani international competitions in Italy.

Ms. Sonia H. Yon has performed in main role in many operas, such as Madama Butterfly, La Boheme, La Traviata, Un Ballo in Maschera, Il Trovatore, La forza del Destino, Tosca, Don Carlo, Requiem, Sour Angelica, Manon Lescaut, Anna Bolena, and Il Corsaro in Italy and South Korea. She also performed in the opera Magic Flute in Vienna, Austria. She performed over 500 concerts in New York, Fairfax and many cities in Europe and South Korea.

Ms. Yon has 18 years of teaching experiences. She was an adjunct professor in South Korea for seven years. She taught Voice, Piano, Italian diction, and Opera Theater. She has been a church choir conductor for over 15 years, which has given her excellent understanding of the dynamics of group singing.

Ms. Sonia H. Yon has been giving lessons in the traditional Bel Canto technique to professional singers, as well as high school students who are going on to major in vocal music. She is able to teach Italian songs, German songs, French songs, and any kind of Opera scores and Broadway songs. Moreover, she is enjoying teaching Musical Theatre based on her profound opera experiences. Ms. Yon absolutely loves children, and delights in seeing their musical growth and progress.

Dr. Ying Zhao

Piano (MM, DMA)

Dr. Ying Zhao is a music educator, active solo and collaborative pianist. Dr. Zhao holds a Master of Music degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Piano Performance from Pennsylvania State University, where she also served as a teaching assistant and rehearsal pianist. Her primary teachers include Steven Smith, ​Marylène Dosse and Lanlan Guo. She also played in masterclass of ​Jerome Lowenthal, Leon Fleisher, Boris Slutsky and Richard Becker. An active performer, Dr. Zhao has appeared on stages throughout United States and China, including San Francisco State University, California State University Fullerton, Chinese Consulate General in San Francisco, Beijing Normal University, Xiamen University, Pittsburgh Heinz Hall, National Archive Museum, Penn State’s President’s Concert, Garcia Piano Competition, National City Christian Church, and Mayflower Music Festival.

Gianne Ge Zhu

Piano (MM)

Born in Jiangsu, China, Gianne Ge Zhu began her study of piano at age five. In 2008, Ms. Zhu came to the United States to further her training at Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University under the tutelage of Professor Yong Hi Moon. Currently she is a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree candidate at James Madison University (JMU). She also serves as the state music theory chair for the Virginia Music Teachers Association (VMTA).

Gianne Zhu earned Master of Music degrees in Piano Performance, Piano Pedagogy, and Music Theory Pedagogy, at Peabody Conservatory in 2014. They reflect her interest and passion for teaching, in addition to her love for performance. Her research projects on piano teaching were selected to present at the Music Teachers National Association Collegiate Piano Pedagogy Symposium at UT-Austin in 2018, and UNF in Jacksonville, FL in January 2017. Prior to her graduate study, she received, also at Peabody Conservatory, a Bachelor of Music Degree in piano performance.

As an active pianist, Ms. Zhu has been performing in solo and chamber music, and has also engaged in intensive accompaniment in the U.S., China, Germany, Italy and Malta. Her recent solo performances included a solo concert in Jiangsu, China and performing the Chopin First Piano Concerto with the James Madison University (JMU) Symphony Orchestra. She was a finalist of the 1st Brescia International Piano Competition (Italy), and won prizes in several competitions: West Virginia International Piano Competition, JMU Concerto/Aria Competition, Virginia Music Teachers Association (VMTA) Piano Concerto Competition, VMTA Young Artist Piano Competition, and Baltimore Music Club Competition. She has also been active participating and performing at music festivals with scholarships, including Miami Music Festival, Malta International Piano Festival (Malta), Talent Music School (Italy), Orford Music Festival (Canada), Bowdoin Music Festival (Maine) and Brevard Music Festival (North Carolina). Ms. Zhu also performed in many master classes for Jeremy Denk, Pavel Gililov, Balázs Szokolay, Juan Lago, Albert Mamriev, James Giles, Eugene and Elizabeth Pridonoff.

As an accompanist, Ms. Zhu has been collaborating with the flutist Guilherme Andreas recording an album featuring Brazilian Classical Music labeled by Fina Flor (Brazil). They have been invited to perform at Duke University (NC), Lancaster, PA, Whippany, NJ, and Harrisonburg, VA. Ms. Zhu also serves as a staff accompanist for Ballet and Contemporary dance at JMU. In the summer of 2015, Ms. Zhu was invited to Freiberg, Germany, being awarded a full assistantship, for accompanying rehearsals for the operas at Freiberg and Döbeln Theaters as well as accompanying the Brahms Lieder Concert at the Schumann-Haus in Zwickau.