John Feierabend is considered one of the leading authorities on music and movement development in early childhood. He is a professor of Music and the Director of Music Education at the Hartt School of the University of Hartford and is a past President of the American Kodály Educators. A music educator for over thirty years, he continues to be committed to collecting, preserving and teaching the diverse folk music of our country and to using that folk music as a bridge to help children understand and enjoy classical music.
In addition to serving as the lead scriptwriter for the Van Cliburn Foundation's "Musical Awakenings" program of classical concerts for children, Dr. Feierabend promotes music education through frequent presentations in the United States and abroad. He is the author of more than 60 books, recordings and DVDs including the popular "First Steps in Music" series and the "Conversational Solfege" curriculum materials.
Peggy Dettwiler is Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities at Mansfield University in Mansfield, PA, where she conducts the Concert Choir, Festival Chorus, and Mansfieldians, and teaches choral conducting and methods. Dr. Dettwiler has been a guest conductor and lecturer throughout the United States, working with singers of all ages from university, public school, church, to community choirs.
The Mansfield University Concert Choir, which she has conducted for twenty-two years, has been invited each of the last twenty years to perform at state, regional, national, or international choral conventions. In 2008, the Concert Choir won the World Championship in the Gospel & Spiritual Category at the World Choir Games in Graz, Austria. This past summer the Concert Choir won three gold medals and the World Choir Games in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Dr. Dettwiler received her Doctor of Music Arts in Conducting at the Eastman School of Music. She also has a Master of Music Degree in Choral Conducting from the University of Texas at San Antonio, and a Master of Music Degree in Music Education from the University of Wisconsin. She is past president of the PA Chapter of the ACDA and is currently serving as the PA representative on the Board of Directors for the National Collegiate Choral Organization.
Christopher Azzara - pianist, arranger, composer, and educator - Chris Azzara has made important contributions to advancing the understanding of creativity and improvisation in the music learning process. An innovator in the area of music teaching and learning, Dr. Azzara is Professor of Music Education, Chair of the Music Education Department, and Affiliate Faculty of Jazz Studies and Contemporary Media at the Eastman School of Music.
Teaching and performing internationally, he is the author of numerous articles, arrangements, and books including Developing Musicianship Through Improvisation, Creativity In Improvisation, and Jump Right In: THe Instrumental Series (GIA). His research and publications are concerned with meaningful relationships among listening, creating, improvising, reading, composing, and analyzing music in vocal and instrumental settings. He performs as a soloist and in various ensembles, including the Chris Azzara Quartet, an has played on and produced many studio and educational recordings. Dr. Azzara has presented and performed extensively throughout the Unites States and abroad. He received a Bachelor of Music degree from George Mason University and taught instrumental music in the Fairfax County Public Schools. He later received a Master of Music and Ph.D. in Music Education from the Eastman School of Music.
Lillie Feierabend is known for her work with young children and instilling a love of music within them. This is her twelfth year as faculty at the University of Hartford Magnet School and her thirteenth as a director for the Connecticut Children's Chorus. She received the 1998 Teacher of the Year Award from her district for her innovative and inclusive music programs.
In 2008, Lillie again received her district's Teacher of the Year Award and Outstanding Elementary Music Educator Award from the Connecticut Music Educators Association. Lillie is a frequent clinician at local, state and national conferences, speaking on many aspects of early childhood music.
Eve Montague is Director of Creative Arts Therapies, Chair of the South Shore Conservatory's Music Therapy Department, and a member of the voice faculty. She is a board certified music therapist, working for over 25 years with both children and adults in educational and vocational settings, implementing a diverse range of programs. She is skilled in instrument adaptation and modification, as well as adapted technology and access. She is Director and Conductor of the South Shore Conservatory Community Voices, a performance ensemble serving individuals with developmental disabilities.
Eve holds a degree in music education from the University of Western Ontario, her music therapy equivalency fom Western Michigan Univerity, and her Masters of Science in Management from Emmanuel College. She is the president for the New England Region of the American Music Therapy Association, and has presented and trained extensively throughout the state, regionally and nationally.
Mary Correia is presently an elementary music specialist in the Billerica Public Schools, and serves as the coordinator of the Embracing the New Music Educator mentoring program for the Northeast Distrtict of the Massachusetts Music Educators Association. In addition to her extensive support of young music educators around the state, she supervises the student teaching practicum placements and advising of ungergraduate music education majors at Gordon College and Berklee College of Music.
Mary received her Bachelor of Music in Music Education and M.Ed.Arts. in Education from the University of Massachuetss at Lowell. She began her carreer at the Dutile Elementary School in Billerica, MA, and in addition to her public school responsibilities she was the Laboratory School Supervisor for the Univeristy of Lowell Methods Course. In Reading, MA she served as an elementary music specialist and as choral conductor for the middle and high school choir ensembles. She has directed the Childrens Musical Theater Arts Program for the Westford Suzuki School of Muisc and has been a vocal coach for local theater.
Sean Hagon is currently the Director of the New England Conservatory's School of Continuing Education. Prior to his appointment at NEC, he was the Director of Music for six years at Pingree School, a private college preparatory school in South Hamilton, MA. While at Pingree, Hagon directed the jazz and chamber music ensembles, started a percussion and guitar ensemble program, taught AP music theory, and pioneered Pingree's first-eve music technology lab, with courses in music production and technology.
An experienced and well rounded musician in all genres, Sean graduated from Berklee College of Music with a degree in Professional Music focusing on music technology, composition, and music education. He also holds a master's degree from Indiana University - Purdue at Indianapolis in Music Technology. Sean has extensive computer music and music technology expertise and is a composer for the film, video game, television and advertisement industries.