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Faculty


(Vivace String Camp Faculty 2013)
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Click on photo or name to see biography.
Martha Thomas Steve Thomas Sam Marchan Rintaro Wada
jMarone
Lisa Lantz Bill Staebell Jim Ieda James Marone
gavinmo
Sarah K. McIlhatten Mary Anne Cappellino Kelley Hijleh
paul    
Paul Tsujimoto  
   
 
Directors



Founder and Executive Director

Violinist and teacher, Martha McIlhatten Thomas has performed with some of the greatest musicians of our time—Aaron Copland, Joseph Silverstein, Arnold Steinhardt, Ida Kavafian, Nadja Salerno- Sonnenberg, Dizzy Gillespie, Marvin Hamlisch, Glenn Dicterow, Leonard Slatkin, and Kurt Mazur.
She also solo-serenaded baseball legend, Yogi Berra, on his 74th birthday! For nine years, she studied with Sally Thomas, Ivan Galamian's assistant and a member of the Juilliard violin faculty, attending both The Mannes College and the prestigious Meadowmount School.
As Assistant Principal Second Violin with the Virginia Symphony for eight seasons, Ms. Thomas also performed extensively in New York City, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. Before moving to Buffalo, she held a teaching post at Montclair State University, where thirteen of her younger students were selected to perform for violinist, Joshua Bell.
Ms. Thomas holds a Bachelor's Degree in Early Childhood Education, the equivalent in Music, a Master's Degree in Violin Performance, and extensive Suzuki Certification.
Former Concertmaster of the Amherst Symphony Orchestra, and currently performing with WYNCO, the Southern Tier Symphony, and at Shea’s, Ms. Thomas has teaching studios in both Amherst and Houghton.
She is a proud mother and grandmother who lives with her husband Steve Thomas and enjoys needlepoint and fitness walking. Martha and Steven Thomas will also be filling the role of registrar this coming year with Vivace String Camp.

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Artistic Director

Steven Thomas
is the Artistic Director of Vivace String Camp. At camp he is a full time teacher of strings and piano who collaborates with our guest artists as accompanist, chamber musician and mentor. During the rest of the year Steve promotes and administrates camp activities along with his fellow directors. 2010-2011 is Steve’s 15th season as Conductor and Music Director of the Amherst Symphony Orchestra, an adult community orchestra in Western New York. Presenting five concerts each season in Amherst, the orchestra performs free of charge with guest artists that have included pianists Steven Manes, Claudia Hoca and Barry Snyder, violinist David Kim, flutist Carol Wincenc and ensembles including the Amherst Saxophone Quartet and the Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus. This is the Amherst Symphony’s 65th season of presenting themed programs with fabulous guest artists, free of charge to our community. Mr. Thomas is a frequent guest conductor of student orchestra festivals. He has conducted the Long Island String Festival Association orchestras at all levels, county festivals in Erie, Chautauqua, Niagara, Monroe, Onondaga, Oswego and Putnam counties of New York, and New York State School Music Association Area All State festivals in Potsdam, Cortland, Oswego and Syracuse as well as festivals in Massachusetts and North Carolina. Steve and Martha are now living close to Vivace String Camp’s home at Houghton College, in Fillmore, NY, starting a new experience together after Steve’s retirement after 31 years of teaching in the town of Amherst, NY. Steve now has a little more time to care for and fly a Cessna 150F. Also, Steve is an avid bicyclist, fisherman and outdoorsman. Look up next time you see a red and white Cessna fly overhead! It just might be Steve and Martha!

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Conductors


Steven Thomas, Details TBA

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Violin

 

Violinist and teacher, Martha McIlhatten Thomas has performed with some of the greatest musicians of our time—Aaron Copland, Joseph Silverstein, Arnold Steinhardt, Ida Kavafian, Nadja Salerno- Sonnenberg, Dizzy Gillespie, Marvin Hamlisch, Glenn Dicterow, Leonard Slatkin, and Kurt Mazur.
She also solo-serenaded baseball legend, Yogi Berra, on his 74th birthday! For nine years, she studied with Sally Thomas, Ivan Galamian's assistant and a member of the Juilliard violin faculty, attending both The Mannes College and the prestigious Meadowmount School.
As Assistant Principal Second Violin with the Virginia Symphony for eight seasons, Ms. Thomas also performed extensively in New York City, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. Before moving to Buffalo, she held a teaching post at Montclair State University, where thirteen of her younger students were selected to perform for violinist, Joshua Bell.
Ms. Thomas holds a Bachelor's Degree in Early Childhood Education, the equivalent in Music, a Master's Degree in Violin Performance, and extensive Suzuki Certification.
Former Concertmaster of the Amherst Symphony Orchestra, and currently performing with WYNCO, the Southern Tier Symphony, and at Shea’s, Ms. Thomas has teaching studios in both Amherst and Houghton.
She is a proud mother and grandmother who lives with her husband Steve Thomas and enjoys needlepoint and fitness walking.

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Lisa Lantz, Chair of the Division of Performing Arts at Alfred University, is an Associate Professor of Music/Strings, and Music Director of the AU Symphony Orchestra. She is also an Adjunct in Italian for the Division of Modern Languages.
Dr. Lantz received her Master of Music from the University of Michigan, where she studied with Ruggiero Ricci, and her Doctor of Musical Arts from the Ohio State University. She also studied with Aaron Rosand in Nice, France; Nathan Milstein in Zurich, Switzerland; and Jacob Krachmalnick, former concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra.
An experienced orchestral and chamber musician, Dr. Lantz has performed with many regional orchestras including as Co-Concertmaster of the Southern Tier Symphony, The Orchestra of the Finger Lakes, Flint, Saginaw, and Ashland Symphony. She has taught at Kenyon College, Ohio University, The Ohio State University, University of Michigan, and University of Toledo, and has served as a chamber music clinician for the Delaware Music Festival at Ohio Wesleyan University.
Within the community, Dr. Lantz is the music director of the Alfred University Youth Orchestra, Junior Strings, and heads the Beginning String program, all of which she founded upon her arrival at Alfred University.
Dr. Lantz is an experienced orchestral conductor with performances in both symphonic works as well as choral, including Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, Bach’s Magnificat, Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana, and Mozart’s Requiem. In June 2005, Dr. Lantz participated in an International Conductor’s Workshop, in Varna, Bulgaria.

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James Ieda
is a native of Western New York who left to pursue a B.M. from SUNY
Potsdam, study at the Birminghm Conservatoire, teach in St. Lucia, and later return to
accept a position teaching elementary strings in Clarence. He completed his Masters
in Violin Performance from SUNY Fredonia in 2004 and has been an active freelance
violinist in the WNY area for the past decade. An Elementary All County Orchestra
chair for several years, he also conducted Jr. High All County in Oswego. Residing in
Clarence with his musician wife Anneke and their two children, James is the Concert
Master of the Orchard Park Symphony, He also performs with the Clarence Summer
Orchestra, the Southern Tier Symphony and with anyone he can scare into coming
over to read String Quartets. In his free time, James is an avid hunter, jeeper, and
snowboarder.

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Viola

Sam Marchan, a native of Venezuela, has established himself as an outstanding performer and teacher. He is part of the Artist Faculty at the Walnut Hill/Sphinx Academy in Boston.

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Cello

Rintaro Wada is the Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Society of Olean. His solo, chamber music, and orchestra performances have been given in Japan, Italy, and the US. and he has been invited to perform by radio programs, universities and concert associations.
He studied in Rochester, NY, and Japan, earning a Master of Music in performance and literature from Eastman School of Music and a Bachelor of Music degree and post-graduate diploma in cello performance from Showa College of Music.
He has studied cello performance with Joichi Sano, Ryoichi Hayashi, Hiromi Uegusa, Hirofumi Kanno, Stefan Reuss, Marcy Rosen, Nathaniel Rosen, Steven Doane, and Alan Harris, also chamber music with Richard Killmer, Paul O’Dette, Christel Thielmann, Margery Hwang, and John Graham as well as with members of the Amadeus Quartet, Bartok Quartet, Mendelssohn Quartet, Ying Quartet, and Fine Arts String Quartet.
Mr. Wada is a cellist of the Western New York Chamber Orchestra, and orchestra teacher of the Olean City School District, adjunct faculty of the Houghton College, Greatbatch School of Music as well as the St. Bonaventure University.

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Bass

Bill Staebell has been teaching music at the Iroquois School District since 1983, where he conducts five orchestras and coaches numerous chamber groups. He is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music; he studied Jazz studies and contemporary media/music education, and received his Masters Degree from Fredonia College.
Bill is currently conductor of the Southtowns Youth Orchestra, and has also conducted Orchard Park Symphony, Erie County Festival groups and various All State and County Orchestras throughout New York State. As a classical bassist, he has performed with major symphony orchestras, including the Buffalo Philharmonic, Rochester Philharmonic, New Mexico Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, National Symphony of Canada in Ottawa, Gulf Coast Symphony,Florida, and the Boston Pops Orchestra.
In demand as a Jazz bass player, he has recorded on Motown Records with Bobby Militello, on Chrysalis Records with the group "Auracle" and performs with many local artists such as Sal Andolina, Mary Stahl, Rick Strauss and Carla Valenti. Bill resides in Orchard Park with his wife and three children.

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James Marone
has been teaching at Sweet Home since 1997 where he directs the Symphony Orchestra, Concert Orchestra, Jazz Ensemble and Chamber Orchestra. He has previously held positions in the Olean City School District, Lancaster and Fredonia Central Schools. Mr. Marone received his Bachelor of Music from SUNY Fredonia and Masters of Music from Florida State University.
As a bassist, Mr. Marone has been a member of the Western New York Chamber Orchestra (Fredonia, NY) for over 20 years. He also serves as principal bassist of the Clarence Summer Orchestra, performs with the Southern Tier Symphony in Olean, NY. Mr. Marone has also performed with the Erie Philharmonic, Erie Chamber Orchestra, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra.
Mr. Marone has studied bass performance with William Staebell, Dr. Harry Jacobson, Kevin Casseday and Paul Bresciani and attended the Aspen Music Festival in 1992 and where he studied with Stuart Sankey. Mr. Marone maintains a private bass studio and has students that have attended the Eastman School of Music, Northwestern University, Duquesne University, SUNY Fredonia and Roberts Wesleyan College to pursue their musical careers.

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Piano

An educator, conductor and performer, Steven Thomas has taught high school orchestra programs in the town of Amherst, New York for 28 years. Recognized for their fine musicianship and technical skill, Mr. Thomas's orchestras have earned Gold with Distinction awards at the New York State School Music Major Organization Festivals and Superior ratings at Dixie Classics Music Festivals.
Many of his students have established careers in music and include David Kim, the concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra, Karen Wagner, oboist in the Oregon Symphony, Leslie Ryang of the Hong Kong Philharmonic, and Amy Schroeder of the Attacca String Quartet.
Mr. Thomas is the Conductor and Music Director of the Amherst Symphony Orchestra (ASO), a regional orchestra in Western New York. Guest artists with the ASO have included pianists Steven Manes, Claudia Hoca and Barry Snyder, violinists David Kim and Amy Glidden (BPO Assistant Concertmaster), flutist Carol Wincenc and ensembles including the Amherst Saxophone Quartet, Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus, Philharmonic String Quartet and the Amherst Bel Canto Choir.
Mr. Thomas has guest conducted the Long Island String Festival Association orchestras, county festivals in Erie, Chautauqua, Niagara, Monroe and Putnam counties, and NYSSMA Area All State festivals in Potsdam, Cortland, Oswego and Syracuse as well as festivals in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Summers have found Mr.Thomas on the staff of Crane Youth Music and the ASTA with NSOA String Conference at Fredonia. Mr. Thomas lives with his wife Martha and is a father, grandfather, pilot, bicyclist and outdoorsman.

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Ritsuko Wada's Bio coming soon.

 

Guitar

Chris Thomas Bio coming soon..

Photographers

Sarah K. McIlhatten, currently in sarasota, Fl. is based in New York City. Sarah has been passionate about photography for several years now.  Sarah has assisted many professional photographers in the NY/NJ area. Sarah is currently working as a portrait photographer for World Yacht Dinner Cruises in New York City. Sarah enjoys her work, and being creative every day.

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Tracey Ling, bio coming soon.

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Production Director

Gavin Morgan, is currently based in the New York metro area. He is an avid fan of art and design of all kinds, creative from a young age he decided to pursue his love of art as a career. An associate of Graphic Design from Keiser University in Sarasota, Fl. He has garnered experience in the photography, textile and fashion industries, as well as freelancing from college to now in layout, branding,and web design projects. Has created textiles that have been produced nationwide and overseas, selling to such clients as Delia's, Nike, Macy's and The Gap. Currently Webmaster for Vivace and Designer helping with productions and branding for the camp.

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Water Colorist

Mary Anne Cappellino

With more than 20 years experience designing fitness programs, MaryAnne motivates her listeners to positive lifestyle change as a national speaker, wellness consultant, watercolor artist, author and exercise trainer. MaryAnne has helped thousands of people change their bodies and direct their minds in new and positive ways. Mary Anne serves as spokesperson for “Be Active" New York State, The American Heart Association and is wellness director for The Buffalo Athletic Club. Her passion for exercise and her commitment to a healthy lifestyle is contagious and her dynamic speaking style engages audiences everywhere in the fun of fitness and the importance of investing in a healthy future!

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Tai Chi



Paul Tsujimoto
is a 5th degree Black Sash in the art of Tibetan White Crane Kung Fu
He has studied since 1994 and is one of several senior students teaching and continuing
to learn under Master Lowell Sarber. In addition to the empty hand and weapons skills,
Sifu Tsujimoto has also studied the Tai-Chi, meditation and healing arts of this style.
(Master Sarber has over 65 years in the Tibetan White Crane System learning the Art
from Masters Lau J. Hum and brother Lau Quan Yen and also directly from Grand
Master Wen Jen Ho (Wong Lam Hoi) in China.)
A martial artist for over 40 years, Sifu Tsujimoto has also studied Okinawan KaraTe,
and Aikido.
He has studied with other notable martial artists Nick Gacenin, Billy Adams, Sam
Masich and Chi Gung Master Angela Yen.

In addition to the Martial Arts, Sifu Tsujimoto has been an active sportsman through
out his life. He is a backpacker, trekking most of the Adirondack State Park. He is
an experienced cyclist, canoeist/kayaker and Rock/Ice Climber. An avid skier, he is
a traditional diagonal stride Nordic skier and taught Alpine and Telemark Skiing at
Labrador Mountain Ski Area (Cortland, NY) for 7 years rising to a PSIA (Professional
Ski Instructor of America) Level II Certified instructor in Alpine Skiing.

Sifu Tsujimoto’s vocation is designing/engineering knives for KA-BAR Knives/Cutco
Cutlery. He has been in the cutlery industry for 23 years working for Camillus Cutlery,
Ontario Knife and KA-BAR/Cutco. He also provides technical expertise for AKTI
(American Knife and Tool Institute) and Knife Rights (a legislative knife organization).

Musically, Sifu Tsujimoto plays the cello having studied under Mr. John Armesto and
Ms. Dorthea Pepky at Iroquois Central School. He performs regularly at the Cuba
United Methodist Church and also sings tenor and bass in the Choir.

He currently resides in Cuba, NY with his wife Sandra (a teacher) and son Joshua.

Adminstrative Assistant / Registrar

The role of registrar this year will be filled by M. Sara Thomas, bio coming soon.

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