ARTISTIC MANAGEMENT:

Peter Tiboris

39 years
General Director and Music Director of MidAmerica Productions
at Carnegie Hall and MidAm International
Email: mozart11@aol.com
Tiboris@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 239 or 212-736-1617

Mobile: 973-725-2622

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Peter Tiboris, Greek American conductor, music director, and producer, has enjoyed a worldwide career for more than forty years of which the past thirty have been in New York City. He is the founder and artistic director of MidAmerica Productions, which has produced concerts in Carnegie Hall, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall (now called David Geffen Hall), and Alice Tully Hall in New York; the Festival of the Aegean in Syros, Greece; performance series in Vienna, Austria, and Florence, Italy; and concerts throughout Europe and the U.S. Maestro Tiboris is also the founder of the Manhattan Philharmonic, Elysium Recordings, and most recently, MidAm International.

Since 1983, he has presented more than 1300 concerts worldwide and 1000 in New York, including 550 on the main stage of Carnegie Hall, where he has also conducted many of the concerts. He is Music Director and Conductor of the Manhattan Philharmonic, which he founded; and the Pan-European Philharmonia, in Warsaw, Poland; and Principal Guest Conductor of Orchestra da Camera Fiorentina, in Florence, Italy.

He made his European conducting debut on July 1, 1983, in Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia, with the Moscow Philharmonia as part of the Dubrovnik Festival; and his New York conducting debut on January 7, 1984, with the American Symphony Orchestra at Lincoln Center. He has conducted in 20 countries, among them Mexico; Russia, in St. Petersburg and Moscow at Column Hall, Tchaikovsky Hall, and Shostakovich Hall; Great Britain, in London at the Barbican and Royal Festival Hall; Austria, at Vienna’s Konzerthaus; Poland, in 11 cities including Warsaw; Czech Republic, in Prague’s Rudolfinium and Smetana Hall with Virtuosi di Praga and the North Czech Philharmonic; Italy, at Teatro di Roma, Teatro Filarmonica di Verona, Regio di Parma, and 20 other locations; Portugal; Turkey; and Egypt, at Cairo’s National Opera House. Mr. Tiboris has conducted such renowned orchestras as the Royal Philharmonic, London Philharmonia, Oxford’s Philomusica, Niedersächsische Orchester Hannover, the Prague and Brno philharmonics, National Opera Orchestra of Cairo, American Symphony Orchestra, Moscow Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra, Société Philharmonique de Montreal, Israel Symphony Orchestra Rishon Le-Zion, Orchestra del Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, and Orchestra di Siciliana di Palermo. In March 2016, he made his Asian conducting debut with the Macao Symphony Orchestra and Taipei Philharmonic Chorus in Macao, China. Additionally, he has conducted nearly every major choral work as well as countless symphonic works, selected operas, and ballet.

On his Carnegie Hall series, he has showcased hundreds of guest conductors and thousands of visiting ensembles from throughout the world. He has conducted or presented hundreds of works with numerous and significant world and American premieres, including music by Rossini, Mozart, Beethoven/Mahler, Taneyev, Cherubini, and Theodorakis. The concerts have been hailed by The New York Times, New York Daily News, New York Post, and The New Yorker, among other noted publications.

His company, Elysium Recordings, has released 30 recordings, most of which are premiere and first-time commercial releases. He performs on ten of those. The International Festival of the Aegean has recently concluded its 12th season in Syros, Greece; and MidAm International, Inc., founded in 2013 as a producer of concerts abroad, has presented performances in Vienna, Florence, and Syros, with proposed concerts in China and France.

Peter Tiboris studied music at the University of Wisconsin and received a doctorate from the University of Illinois, but he credits his move to New York City some thirty years ago as the most important event in his musical and professional life. He is married to the soprano Eilana Lappalainen, and they reside in Germany, Greece, and the U.S.

 


Eilana Lappalainen-Tiboris

15 years
Principal Artistic Administration for MidAm International
and Director of Vocal Division for MidAmerica Productions at Carnegie Hall
Email: elappalainen@aol.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 222
Mobile: 918-629-8803


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Eilana Lappalainen, of Finnish-Canadian descent, has performed title roles to critical claim in the world’s premier opera venues including Teatro alla Scala, Opera di Roma, Hamburgische Staatsoper, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Opéra de Montréal, Bellas Artes, Teatro Verdi Trieste, New Israeli Opera, Lithuanian National Opera, Finnish National Opera, Polish National Opera, Opera North, Staatstheater Essen, Prague State Opera, Gran Teatre del Liceu Barcelona, New York City Opera, Seattle Opera, San Francisco Opera, Cincinnati Opera, Michigan Opera, Minnesota Opera, Nashville Opera, Kentucky Opera, Portland Opera, Virginia Opera, Opera Hamilton, Opera Ottawa, Marin Opera, Arizona Opera, and Opera San Jose, and in cities such as Wiesbaden, Dessau, Halle, Mannheim, Bremen, Würtzburg, Bielefeld, and Winterthur.

Her repertoire includes leading roles in Salome, Der Rosenkavalier, Arabella, Der Fliegende Holländer, Lohengrin, Fidelio, Peter Grimes, Wozzeck, Der Freischütz, Jenůfa, Giovanna D’Arco, Un ballo in maschera, I masnadieri, Il trovatore, Pagliacci, Cavalleria rusticana, Medea, Andrea Chénier, Madama Butterfly, Suor Angelica, Il tabarro, La fanciulla del West, Turandot, and Tosca. At Carnegie Hall, she has sung Verdi’s, Mozart’s and Fauré’s Requiems; Zanetto; A Gala Concert; Vivaldi’s Gloria; a recital in Weill Recital Hall, and recently, the New York premiere of To Be Afraid of the Dawn. Her recording of Zanetto was released in 2008, and a CD of Mahler songs was released in 2013, both by Elysium Recordings. This past summer she sang the role of Nedda in Pagliacci at Festival of the Aegean. Recently, she has performed in such diverse places as New York, Arizona, Catania, Calabria, Florence and Macao. Her future engagements include Aida in Thessaloniki, and concerts in Taormina, Paris, New York, Prague, and Passau, Germany. She is working on a new recording, “Dramatic Divas,” which will be released in 2017.

In addition to her singing career, she is the Artistic Director of Opera Productions of the Festival of the Aegean, General & Artistic Director of Greek Opera Studio, Festival of the Aegean Manager, and Artistic Administrator, Director of the Vocal Division at MidAmerica Productions.

 


Norman Dunfee

30 years
Production Manager for MidAmerica Productions at Carnegie Hall
Email: ndunfee@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 208

 


Eric Spiegel

4 years
Director of Program Development
Email: espiegel@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 201
Mobile: 646-801-4326

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Eric Spiegel joined the MidAmerica Productions team in 2016 with experience teaching Middle School and High School vocal/general music. A native of New Jersey, Eric holds a Master of Music Education degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, as well as a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Miami Frost School of Music. As a performer, Eric has sung and acted in choirs, jazz groups, a cappella ensembles, and theatrical productions across the United States and around the world. Eric also conducts the Brooklyn chapter of HaZamir: The International Jewish Teen Choir, teaches private voice lessons, and sings seasonally with Manhattan Holiday Carolers.


 

 


CORE ADMINISTRATION:

Joseph J. Bill

24 years
Vice President & Director of Administration
Email: jbill@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 217

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Joseph J. Bill was previously a senior administrator and financial manager for Comex, a membership organization for commodities trading. Originally from Long Island, New York, he attended Pace University and presently resides in New Jersey. He plays the keyboard as a hobby, although previously as a piano student, he performed in Carnegie Hall.

 


Joyce Howard-Brazel

24 years
Vice President & Director of Account Operations
Email: jhoward@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 219

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Joyce Howard-Brazel came to MidAmerica Productions in 1997, after serving for eight years in the U.S. Army as an Electronic Warfare Systems Repairer, attaining the rank of Specialist Promotable. Previously, she worked as a Customer Account Coordinator for WTGS-28, a FOX network affiliate station in Savannah, Georgia. A native of Brooklyn, New York, she attended the State University of New York at Purchase. She is currently studying music composition. In her spare time, she enjoys playing tennis, crocheting, reading, cooking and traveling.

 


Molly Waymire

29 years
Director of Audience Development
PipTix
Email: molly.waymire@piptix.com
Mobile: 917-513-3080


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Molly Waymire studied mathematics and computer science at Indiana University. Over the past 20 years, she has gained experience in treasury and management through her work at several theaters, performing arts centers, and theme parks throughout the United States. She was appointed to her present position in 1993.

 


Daniel Guss

2 years
Director of Public Relations and Publications
Email: dguss@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 204

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 A recovering recording executive, Daniel Guss spent more than two decades at a company known variously as RCA, BMG and Sony, first in the direct marketing division as classical A&R manager, then in the Red Seal international marketing department as head of product development for reissues. He next served as public relations account executive for Nancy Shear Arts Services, representing artists, compact disc releases and New York concert presentations.

As a consultant in various capacities, his clients have included Sony BMG Masterworks, EMI Classics, Universal Music Classical, the New York Philharmonic and, most recently, the Early Music Foundation, where his responsibilities encompassed public relations, marketing, audience development and program notes for its performing arm, Early Music New York, and for the biennial New York Early Music Celebration.

A New York city native, Daniel attended the Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music and Art, graduating from the stage of Carnegie Hall. He went on to Northwestern University (B.Mus.) and the University of Connecticut (M.Mus.), earning degrees in theory and composition. A master of music but still a slave to it, he plays the piano and sings, but finds that when he doesn’t sing, he has more friends.

 


Cindy Zhang

3 years
Managing Director of MidAm International’s Programs Abroad
Email: czhang@midamerica-music.com

In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 293

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Cindy Zhang graduated from New York University in May 2016 with a master’s degree in music business.  Additionally, she holds a master’s degree in piano performance from Ithaca College. Her experiences have been on both sides of the curtain.  As a pianist she performed at Lincoln Center in 2013, while as a production assistant she has worked at multiple international music festivals throughout Europe and Asia.


 


Sherry Manokara

2 years
Associate Director of Operations for MAP and MIDAM
Email: smanokara@midamerica-music.com

In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 218

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Sherry Manokara was previously a bridal consultant for Macy’s. She is currently studying to attain her Bachelor’s of Science in Criminal Justice. A native of Queens, New York, she is certified in various health programs such as phlebotomy and enjoys reading during her spare time.


 


DISTINGUISHED COMPOSERS & CONDUCTORS:

Michael John Trotta

Red Bank, New Jersey, USA
Distinguished Composer & Conductor


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Fueled by a passion to share new music that engages conductors, ensembles, and audiences alike, Michael John Trotta (b.1978) is fast becoming one of the most “exciting and prominent new composers of choral music.” Drawing on his experience as a conductor and clinician, he brings artistry and excellence within reach for thousands of musicians each year.

From Carnegie Hall to classrooms all over the world, Trotta’s unique blend of engaging and artistic music creates opportunities to experience new music and empowers individuals to realize their artistic potential. His engaging style fuses tradition and innovation to create moments of beauty that “effectively carry out a dialogue between the [music] and the modern listener.” (Choral Journal)

Prior to his work as a full-time composer, his experience as an educator at the elementary, middle school, high school, and university levels – as well as a church music director – infuses his works with “an intimate knowledge of the human voice” and a “rare sensitivity to the capabilities of a choral ensemble.” This, combined with his degrees in music education and a doctorate in choral conducting, have grounded his style in tradition, which blend with his modern sensibilities to “inform the thoughts and aspirations of the people and the time” (Choral Scholar) and to create “tender harmonies and a palette of glowing vocal and instrumental colors.” (Gramophone)

Driven by a desire to support hardworking directors who work to bring out the best in their ensembles, Trotta has developed keynotes that connect conductors to the educational and artistic goals that drew them to the profession in the first place. “Your Perfect Choir,” “Developing Artistry,” and “Empowering Ensembles” create experiences that connect people to the power of music and its ability transcend barriers and teach us more about each other and ourselves.

An ardent advocate for under-resourced and overworked arts organizations, Trotta has pioneered the development of the consortium model of commissioning. As a result, the opportunity to premiere a major work for choir and orchestra is now within reach for more choirs than ever before. The Carnegie Hall premiere of the inaugural work, Seven Last Words, was heralded as a “modern classic.” Passionate about removing barriers to new music and artistic excellence, Trotta’s “Win a Free Commission” initiative allows any choir the opportunity to have a work written for them at no cost to the ensemble.

Recently, Dr. Trotta has had world premieres commissioned for conventions at TMEA (Texas Music Educators Association) and ACDA (American Choral Directors Association), in addition to being invited to conduct premieres of commissioned major works at Carnegie Hall, and at St. Paul’s Papal Basilica in Rome.

His works are published through JW Pepper, Carl Fischer, ECS Publishing, MorningStar Music, Hal Leonard, Choristers Guild, BriLee Music, Shawnee Press, Alliance Music, GIA, Kjos, Colla Voce, and Walton Music.

Read reviews of his works in Choral Journal, Choral Scholar, and Gramophone, or watch his Inside Voice interview with JW Pepper.

Recordings can be found on iTunes for the following works: For a Breath of Ecstasy, Light Shines in the Darkness, Seven Last Words, Totus Tuus and Gloria.

When he is not traveling for guest conducting and composer residencies, Dr. Trotta spends his time at the beach in Bay Head, New Jersey, where he lives with his wife Rachel.

You can connect with Michael John Trotta at www.mjtrotta.com

 


Nestor Taylor

Athens, Greece
Distinguished Composer


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Australian born (Melbourne 1963) Greek composer Nestor Taylor has a strong presence in the field of opera, and important collaborations and commissions worldwide. His compositional work has a distinct post-romantic orientation with intense lyricism, virtuosic orchestration and dynamism.

Mr. Taylor studied piano, harmony and counterpoint at the Athens Conservatory with George Diamantis and composer Menelaos Pallantios. He continued his studies at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama under Francis Shaw and Robert Saxton, where he was awarded the following diplomas: ALCM in Conducting, LGSM in Composition, LGSM and GSMD in Choral Composition and Orchestration. He completed his M.Mus and M.Phil degrees in Composition at Royal Holloway under the supervision of John Woolridge and Peter Wiegold. In 2005, Mr. Taylor was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship, which enabled him to carry out research as a composer at Yale University.

Mr. Taylor has held the posts of lecturer in Harmony and Composition in the Department of Music Studies of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki; teacher of Music History at the State School of Dance and the Greek National Opera Ballet School; and Artistic Director at the Central Conservatory of Music in Athens. He also served as Head of International Relations, Casting Director and Artistic Advisor to the Director at the Greek National Opera between 2009 and 2016. At present he is a full-time freelance composer.

Mr. Taylor’s concert music includes two piano concertos – Concerto Romantico and Jigsaw – and works for large and medium-sized orchestras, including Pandemonium; Vocalise for soprano and orchestra; and The Path of the Archangel for strings. Chamber and choral works include On a Ray of Winter Sun; And then it is Dusk for mezzo-soprano and ensemble (winner of the first prize in the Mediterranean Composers’ Competition in 2002), and So Fades a Summer cloud away for mixed chorus, cello octet and organ. He has composed several song cycles, as well as music for solo piano and harp, the latter recorded for the Puzzle-Musik label.

Among Mr. Taylor’s most recent compositions is the “dramatic opera-oratorio” Eleni (2019, libretto by Fergus Currie, based on the best-seller by Νicholas Gage) commissioned by MidAmerica Productions for Carnegie Hall, due to premiere on March 25, 2021 followed by a series of performances worldwide.

 


Michael J. Glasgow

Raleigh, North Carolina, USA
Distinguished Composer & Conductor


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Michael J. Glasgow is a native of Detroit, and his family still lives in Michigan. An honors graduate from the College of Charleston (SC), he holds B.A. degrees in music theory/composition, and in journalism. He holds a summa cum laude Master of Church Music degree from Concordia University Wisconsin as a rare double-emphasis student, in both choral and handbell music.

Mr. Glasgow has composed four musical plays (two of which premiered in Charleston's Sottile Theatre), as well as numerous original sacred choral, orchestral, and handbell compositions. His setting of the Latin Requiem text premiered on April 8, 2001, with full orchestra and choir, at North Raleigh United Methodist Church, where he has served as Minister of Music since 1998. Its ten-year anniversary presentations on April 10, 2011 received tremendous acclaim. On June 11, 2017 – his 40th birthday – Mr. Glasgow made his Carnegie Hall debut, conducting the work in New York City’s iconic venue; and conducted its European premiere in Vienna in June 2019.

An active member of the American Composers Forum (ACF), American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), the Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and the Worship Arts (FUMMWA), Handbell Musicians of America, and Mensa, Mr. Glasgow participates in many extracurricular and educational pursuits. He also serves as the bass section leader for the North Carolina Master Chorale.

A composer heralded for his “abundant melodic gift” (New York Concert Review), Mr. Glasgow strives to creatively advance the choral, handbell, and orchestral literature. His music has won numerous accolades and recognitions in composition contests, and he has fulfilled more than 40 commissions, including Concerto for Castings, a multi-movement symphonic work featuring a virtuosic part for a solo percussionist on a handbell-keyboard instrument. In March 2020, he will lead Hong Kong’s Millennium Youth Orchestra in the world premiere, with soloist Matthew Lau.

On the podium, Michael Glasgow is a dynamic, energizing musician who connects well with people and music, and as such is sought after for conducting engagements throughout the country and abroad. Summer 2013 marked his international conducting debut, as a conductor for the Handbell Ringers of Great Britain Ringing Residency Week in Sheffield, England; a return engagement was almost immediately booked for 2015, and then 2017. He has also conducted in the Eastern Caribbean, eastern and western Canada, Hong Kong, Austria, and Singapore.

In his admittedly limited spare time, Mr. Glasgow enjoys weightlifting, yoga and gourmet cooking. Additional information and samples of his work may be found at www.michaeljglasgow.com and on YouTube and Twitter: @MichaelJGlasgow.

 


CONDUCTORS:

David R. Thye

12 years
Conductor/Program Development
Email: dthye@midamerica-music.com
Mobile: 940-765-2956

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David R. Thye is a passionate conductor, educator, lecturer and clinician. While inspiring excellence through discipline and musical integrity, he consistently delivers cutting-edge live performances with sincerity, focus and enthusiasm.

In addition to his work with MidAmerica Productions, Thye is a freelance festival, state, and honor choir conductor, clinician, adjudicator, and consultant.  Prior to his present posts, he was the Robert L. Burton chair of graduate conducting at Southwestern School of Music and music director and conductor of the Master Chorale (the principal chorus of the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra).  Over the past four decades, he has been director of choral activities at Arizona Christian University in Phoenix, the University of Montana in Missoula, and the University of Sioux Falls in South Dakota.

Having received his B.A. degree in music education and voice from the University of Sioux Falls, Thye began his teaching career as a public school choral director. He earned both M.M. and D.M.A. degrees in conducting from the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music. He has studied with such noted teachers as Eph Ehly, Weston Noble, Margaret Hillis, Don Moses, Glenn Block, Ron Nelson, Rod Walker and many others.

Under Dr. Thye’s baton, various professional, collegiate, community, and high school choral organizations have been selected to perform in Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall and Carnegie Hall in New York City and other premier concert halls and venues across the nation and Europe. In recognition of his outstanding success, the University of Sioux Falls presented him with its Alumni Pacesetter Award.

 


Candace Wicke

5 years
Conductor/Program Development
Email: cwicke@midamerica-music.com

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Hailed as a ‘true maestro’ conductor Candace Wicke made her Carnegie Hall debut with MidAmerica Productions in 2002. As a champion of new music, Dr. Wicke has premiered many compositions in her Carnegie Hall appearances and was recently featured in the nationwide PBS documentary “Requiem for my Mother.” Sharing the stage with the likes of the Vienna Philharmonic, Christoph Eschenbach, and Helmuth Rilling, she was the first woman conductor to appear on the prestigious Festival Internazionale pro Musica e Arte Sacre Series in Italy and also conducted the first concert in history by a US organization inside the Sistine Chapel.

Wicke served as Chorus Master for the world premiere of Disney’s “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” at the Paper Mill Playhouse and according to the New York Times, “…the signal pleasure of the show was the Continuo Arts Symphonic Chorus.” Her international experience includes conducting the City of Prague Philharmonic, the Festival Internazionale Di Arte Per Giovani Musicisti in Italy, the United States representative Wind Ensemble at the Taipei Presidential Inauguration and concert tours in Ireland, France, Italy, Australia, Taiwan, and the Czech Republic.

Wicke is the founder, president, and executive director for the Continuo Arts Foundation and conducts the Continuo Arts Intergenerational Choral Ensembles. She is the recipient of the 2014 Distinguished Alumni of the Year for Evangel University, New Jersey’s 2016 Women of Excellence in Arts & Humanities Award Winner and received a 2016 Congressional recognition for dedication and excellence in the Arts.

 


Brian J. Bacon, Jr.

4 years
Conductor/Program Development
Email: bbacon@midamerica-music.com
Mobile: 931-337-7050

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Mr. Brian J. Bacon, Jr. is Conductor/Program Development Associate at MidAmerica Productions, Inc. and MidAm International in New York City. He is also the Director of Music Ministries at Saint Oliver Plunkett Catholic Church in Snellville, Georgia, and the Artistic Director of the Festival Chorale of Fairfield Glade in Fairfield Glade, Tennessee. Mr. Bacon has had the opportunity to serve many churches throughout Tennessee and Missouri, including: Prince of Peace Catholic Church (Flowery Branch, GA), Christ Lutheran Church (Fairfield Glade, TN), St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church (Fairfield Glade, TN), St. Mark the Evangelist Catholic Church (Independence, MO), Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church (St. Joseph, MO), Sand Branch United Methodist (Knoxville, TN), United Church: Chapel On the Hill (Oak Ridge, TN) and First Christian Church: Disciples of Christ (Rockwood, TN). He has participated in the MidAmerica Productions Carnegie Hall Choral Concert Series on six different occasions in several different facets, including chorister, bringing his own choirs to participate and, most recently, as Guest Conductor in 2013 and 2015. Mr. Bacon's studies have included Roane State Community College (Harriman, TN), where he received the Outstanding Musician Award and conducted the Roane State Chamber Choir; Maryville College (Maryville, TN), where he received his Bachelor of Arts in Music and Liberty University, where he earned his Master of Arts in Music and Worship. Mr. Bacon is currently in the Doctoral of Worship Studies program at Liberty University. He has had the opportunity to perform with many well established choruses including: Knoxville Opera Company Chorus, Roane Choral Society, Cumberland County Community Chorus, Saint Joseph Community Chorus, Roane State Community College Concert Choir and Celebration and the Maryville College Concert Choir, Off-kilter and Community Chorus and Mastersingers at Tennessee Tech in Cookeville, Tennessee. Most recently, Mr. Bacon traveled to Rome, Italy where he conducted the Festival Chorale(s) of Fairfield Glade and North Georgia in multiple performances and Masses, including the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord at St. Peter's Basilica presided by Pope Francis. He is an active member of the National Association of Pastoral Musicians and American Choral Director’s Association.

 


Sonja Sepúlveda

7 years
Conductor/Program Development
Email: ssepulveda@midamerica-music.com
Mobile: 803-316-3487

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Sonja Sepúlveda is Director of Choral Activities and professor of music theory at Salem College in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and conducts the Salem Chamber Choir, Chorale, and SuperTonics. She came to Salem College following positions at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Kentucky and Brewton Parker College in Mt. Vernon, Georgia.

Graduating from Winthrop University with Bachelor of Music Education and Master of Music degrees, Sonja Sepúlveda earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of South Carolina where she studied under Larry Wyatt and Carol Krueger. 

Sonja Sepúlveda is former SC Choral Festival Chairman and served as SC All-State Chairman for four years. She also served as her state ACDA Chairman for Jazz and Show Choirs. Her choirs have toured Europe, Mexico, and Canada. She sang with the Robert Shaw Festival Chorus for eight years and with the Carnegie Hall Chorus in 2000 and 2002.  She is well known for her work with youth choruses and is in demand as a choral adjudicator and clinician.

In 2006, she founded the Palmetto Voices, a choir of alumni students from Western Kentucky University, University of South Carolina, Brewton Parker College, Salem College and Sumter High School.  The choir strives to preserve the legacy of the Negro Spiritual and share the vision that this unique American choral art form is for everyone.

 


Marlynn Rey

2 years
Conductor/Program Development
Email: mrey@midamerica-music.com
Mobile: 480-313-5059

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Ms. Rey received a degree in piano and voice in her native country of Canada in 1989. She studied piano, conducting and composition with Canadian composer David McIntyre and with the late world-class concert pianist Stella Goldberg-Brimo. Ms. Rey has 30+ years experience as a piano teacher and choral conductor, both in Canada and the United States. Ms. Rey is a composer whose most recent compositions have been performed at Mesa Community College in Arizona, The Brooklyn Community Chorus in New York and University of Texas, San Antonio. Ms. Rey has served as a rehearsal director for Mid-America Productions at Carnegie Hall in 2008, in Syros Greece in 2017 and in Florence, Italy in 2018.

 


PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT:

James Redcay

5 years
Program Development for MidAmerica Productions at Carnegie Hall &MidAm International
Email:  jredcay@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 223
Mobile: 917-274-7652

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A native of Allentown, Pennsylvania, James Redcay recently joined MidAmerica Productions in April of 2015. A graduate of New York University, Redcay spent four years in New York City as an accomplished pianist, composer and teacher, performing and composing for numerous concerts and institutions. During this time Redcay also held the position of Composer-in-Residence at Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, NJ. After graduating from NYU, Redcay moved abroad to Macao, where he taught music at the Conservatory of Macao and created and managed arts and entertainment programs for Sands China Ltd., a subsidiary of Las Vegas Sands. After six fruitful years, Redcay relocated to the United States and now resides in New York City.

 


George Berry

2 years
Associate Director of Program Development
Email: gberry@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 292

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George Berry comes to MAP with a wide variety of administrative and performance experience. He has held various communications positions, including for the New York Philharmonic; as a consultant for the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra; for music downloading Web site HDtracks.com and its co-owner, multi-Grammy-nominated composer David Chesky; and for the JCC Thurnauer School of Music, where his responsibilities included promotion of concerts with Alan Gilbert and Paquito D’Rivera, among many other duties. George also has experience in operations management with The Curtis Institute of Music, and in librarianship with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. A professional trombonist, George has been a member of the Greenwich Village Orchestra since 2005; toured the U.S. and Canada in the pit orchestra for Bye, Bye, Birdie; and enjoys a varied performance career in the New York City area. He holds a master’s degree in public relations and a bachelor’s degree in music from Boston and Northwestern universities, respectively.

 

 


Joseph Stebbins

18 years
Program Development for MidAmerica Productions at Carnegie Hall &MidAm International
Email: jstebbins@midamerica-music.com

Mobile: 917-517-3764


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Joe Stebbins has been involved in concert development and production with MidAmerica Productions for almost ten years. During his tenure, he has assisted conductors, music directors, and countless performers, in experiencing life-changing performances in New York’s historic Carnegie Hall. As a student assistant at International Schools in Hamburg, Germany, and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, he enjoyed traveling to sing and sometimes compete with choirs in Paris, Amsterdam, London, Mexico, Singapore, Bangkok, and Hong Kong. He received his bachelor of arts degree at Columbia University and continued post-graduate studies at Hunter College and City University of New York pursuant to a master’s degree in musicology with an emphasis on late period Romanticism and 20th-century performance practice. In his leisure time, Joe enjoys teaching guitar, attending good films, and instrumental arranging.

 


Cher Thye

8 years
Program Development for MidAmerica Productions at Carnegie Hall & MidAm International
Email: cthye@midamerica-music.com

Mobile: 940-765-2954

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Cher Thye grew up surrounded by beautiful mountains in Bozeman, Montana. After marrying her college sweetheart, David R. Thye, she has lived in several different places in the Midwest, Southwest and Northeast. With her husband she has traveled extensively across North America and Europe getting to know the people and culture of each place they visit. Cher has a degree in Business Administration and Elementary Education. During her 25 years of teaching in the classroom she directed many music presentations. Another area of music she has had the privilege of being part of is singing under the baton of her husband in different venues including Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall. One of the most thrilling performance moments is the first cut off in the dress rehearsal in Carnegie Hall. Every time it gives chills when you hear what some call the Ghosts of Carnegie Hall singing back to you. As Program Development Associate with MAP and MidAm, Cher is honored to have the privilege to work with outstanding music ensembles and to be a small part of Changing Lives One Concert at a Time.

 


Diana Charlop

First year
Program Development Associate and Assistant in Concert Development and Music Production
Email: dcharlop@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 216

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Diana Charlop recently joined MidAmerica Productions. She returns to her native New York after a summer touring Europe, including performances in Austria and Italy. Prior to that, Diana received her Bachelor’s of Music in Vocal Performance from Vanderbilt University. During her academic career, Diana has performed the roles of Cunegonde in Candide, Susanna and Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, Despina in Cosi fan Tutte, and Musetta in La Boheme as well as several premiere operatic works. She has performed as the soprano soloist in Mozart’s Requiem and Mozart’s Coronation Mass. Diana has also enjoyed performing at Carnegie Hall, Tanglewood and Alice Tully Hall. In addition to her singing endeavors, she enjoys mentoring at Opera America for the National Children’s Chorus’ program for young adults.

 

 


Alex Wong

2 years
Program Development Associate and Assistant in Concert Production
Email: awong@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 294

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Originally from San Diego, Alex Wong comes to MidAmerica Productions with many years of experience working as a violist in the New York City freelance music industry. He is currently a substitute violist with The Phantom of the Opera on Broadway and, prior to joining MAP, he toured the United States with the First National Tour of “Love Never Dies” - The Sequel to Phantom of the Opera. As an avid educator, he has held positions as Adjunct Viola Instructor at NYU and worked with VH1’s Save The Music Foundation: a nonprofit organization dedicated to funding music education in underfunded public schools. He holds both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in Viola Performance from New York University.

 

 


Lu Liu

2 years
Program Development Assistant
Email: lliu@midamerica-music.com
In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 214

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Originally from China, Lu Liu is an award-winning pipa musician with 20 years of performance experience. As a member of the China Nationalities Orchestra Society, Chinese Music Ensemble of New York, and Chinese Theatre Works, she has given performances at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Asia Society, Off-Broadway, United Nations, and Federal Hall among many others. With over five years of producing and managing experience in music, theater, dance, fashion, and film, she has involved in the off-broadway "1001 Nights - Pay No Attention To The Girl" at Target Margin Theater; "ECHO" concert at Carnegie Hall; "NYC Multicultural Dance and Music Festival" at Alvin Ailey Theater and "Booking Dance Festival Showcase" at Jazz at Lincoln Center; High-tech stage adaptation of "How to Train Your Dragon" of DreamWorks in China. Lu Liu is a graduate from Pratt Institute majored in Arts and Cultural Management and is dedicated in conducting Sino-American cultural and musical exchanges.

 

 


Dallas Wicke

First year
Program Development Assistant

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Dallas Wicke made his first appearance as a performer in Carnegie Hall at the young age of 9. Since that time, he has sung in Lincoln Center, the Music Center at Strathmore, Boardwalk Hall and close to a dozen concerts in Carnegie Hall. Mr. Wicke has been on tour with Andre Rieu and the Johann Strauss Orchestra, performed internationally at the Festival Pro Musica e Arte Sacra in Rome, the International Festival di Musica per Giovani Musicisiti in Rome and Prague and at the International Festival of the Aegean. Mr. Wicke continued his musical studies at Evangel University and during which time he served as a production associate for several national and international tours. He is featured in a PBS performance documentary, has recorded several albums including the recently released “Requiem For My Mother” which topped the Billboard Charts for over ten weeks.

 

 


Amanda Blutner

2 years
Assistant Program Development Associate
Email: ablutner@midamerica-music.com

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Amanda Blutner joins the MidAmerica team with over 6 years experience in Arts Administration, performance, and education. She holds a Master of Arts in Music and Music Education from Teacher’s College of Columbia University as well as a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Westminster Choir College. In addition to working with MidAmerica Productions, Blutner is Programs Manager and Assistant Conductor for the Continuo Arts Foundation, as well as a Music Educator within the Elizabeth NJ Public School District. She actively performs as a conductor, vocalist and trombonist in the Greater New York City Area.

 

 


DIGITAL & SOCIAL MEDIA:

Kirk Naylor

Lisette Gonzalez

7 years
Web Consultant & Development

 

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Originally from Chicago, Lisette Gonzalez is a web developer who joined MidAmerica Productions in 2012. For the past 6 years, she has worked in web development and digital communications for arts organizations in New York City. Lisette is a Microsoft Certified Professional in HTML5/JavaScript/CSS3 and is an Adobe Certified Expert in Photoshop. Her hobbies include WordPress and Drupal development, hiking, cooking, and attending live musical performances.

 

 

 


ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANTS:

Nicole Lewin

2 years
Festival & GOS Associate; Production Associate
Email: assistant@midamerica-music.com

In NYC: 212-239-0205, ext. 210

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Nicole Lewin is a singer and voice-trainer originally from Berlin, Germany, with extensive studies in music- and expressive arts therapy. After she received her graduate degree from The European Graduate School in Switzerland, she moved to New York City, where she teaches at the Harrison Music School in Harrison, New York and at Brilliant Kids NYC, and works for Eilana Lappalainen and MAP.

For over a decade she wholeheartedly pursued a career as a teacher, singer and music therapist while working for various schools and institutions in Berlin. During this time she developed voice training, music therapy programs and concepts for individuals, public elementary schools and cultural centers. Through voice work, music, and the arts she likes to bring shifts, healing, abundance, and expansion of the vocal range.

As a singer she has performed in many genres including classical, jazz and electro-pop music projects. Nicole also loves singing in diverse choirs, such as the “Choir of World Cultures” (directed by Barbara Morgenstern) at the House of World Cultures in Berlin ("The pregnant Oyster“) and the classical ensemble Canterbury Choral Society (directed by Jonathan De Vries) in NYC.

Nicole has many years of administrative, backstage, and organizational experience in the field of music festivals. She worked for the old company Bittersweet that organized music events and festivals in Berlin and Brandenburg (e.g. Melt Festival, Pfefferbank) and for the "Musikfestspiele Potsdam Sanssouci.“ Now, she is very excited to support Ms. Lappalainen and her team.


 


NEW ENGLAND SYMPHONIC ENSEMBLE:

Preston Hawes

29 years
Artistic Director, New England Symphonic Ensemble and Principal violinist
Email: ne.ensembles@gmail.com
Mobile: 203.535.8595

 

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Hailed by the European Academy of Arts and Sciences as an “electrifying and virtuosic” performer with “exquisite taste and rare talent,” Canadian violinist, Preston Hawes is a laureate of the Concours de Musique Du Canada, the Andrews International Music Competitions, the Prix de Musique de Chambre à Fontainebleau, and recipient of the JC Van Hulsteyn award and Peabody Career Grant. He has been heard as a soloist in over 35 countries and in venues such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Kennedy Center, and Plovdiv Symphony Hall.  He holds a Master of Music degree and the coveted Artist Diploma at Yale University, and a Doctorate of Musical Arts from the Peabody Institute of Music. He is assistant professor of music and director of strings at Washington Adventist University in Takoma Park, MD and is artistic director of the New England Symphonic Ensemble.