Arianne Abela is Director of Choral Activities at Amherst College and is founder and artistic director of Kaleidoscope Vocal Ensemble, renowned professional ensemble focused on early and new music with dedication to the intersection of racial, ethnic and gender diversity, and the intersection of arts and social justice. Kaleidoscope has performed as a headliner at ACDA, Podium in Canada, and other renowned festivals and conferences. She is a sought-after clinician in composition, conducting and DEIA initiatives. In Detroit, Abela founded the Detroit Justice Choir and Detroit Women’s Chorus, as well as guest conducted with Detroit's OperaMODO and Vancouver-based opera company, Re:Naissance. In 2012, Abela was featured conducting on NBC's Today Show and was a semi-finalist in Season 8 of America's Got Talent as director of Connecticut-based 3 Penny Chorus and Orchestra. The ensemble later recorded for the soundtrack of Hollywood film Walk of Shame starring Elizabeth Banks. Abela holds a doctorate from University of Michigan, masters Yale University, and bachelor of arts from Smith College.
Julie Andrijeski is celebrated as a performer, scholar, and teacher of historical music and dance. She is a faculty member at Case Western Reserve University and Teacher of Baroque Violin and Stage Movement at the Cleveland Institute of Music. She is a Visiting Lecturer at the Juilliard School and is often invited to present workshops at universities nationwide. Her article on historical violin performance is published in A Performer’s Guide to Seventeenth-Century Music. A Grammy Award winner, Andrijeski is Artistic Director of the Atlanta Baroque Orchestra and Co-director of the New York-based ensemble Quicksilver, and performs with several other ensembles.
Praised for her “alluring” performances and “easy virtuosity,” soprano Elena Mullins Bailey has wide-ranging interests in the field of early music. As a performer of period chamber music she has appeared with The Newberry Consort, Les Délices, Early Music Access Project, and the Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra. She takes a scholarly interest in the performance practices of early repertoires, and co-founded the medieval music ensembles Trobár (Cleveland) and Alkemie (Brooklyn). She holds a DMA in Historical Performance Practice and a BA in Musical Arts from The Eastman School of Music. She returned to CWRU in 2016, where she directs the Early Music Singers, and has taught on the voice faculty at Cleveland State University since 2019.
Hannah De Priest is a fearless performer of a wide range of lyric soprano repertoire. Hailed a “breakout artist” (Boston Globe) with “a voice that is theater itself” (Classique News), recent credits include her Kennedy Center debut, (Opera Lafayette, La servante maîtresse), European debut at the Innsbruck Early Music Festival, (Gilde, L’amazzone corsara), and multiple productions with Boston Early Music Festival. The young soprano is set for more important debuts in the 2023-24 season, including role and house debuts with Chicago Opera Theater, Atlanta Baroque Orchestra, and Haymarket Opera, among others. On the concert stage, notable upcoming and recent engagements include Handel’s Messiah with Apollo Chorus & Orchestra and Billings Symphony Orchestra, Bach’s Johannes-Passion with Columbus Symphony and Elmhurst Symphony, and Handel’s Dixit Dominus with the Elgin Master Chorale & Symphony. De Priest’s “glittering, easy soprano” (Merkur) is equally at home on the opera stage and in chamber music and she is especially renowned for her “masterful” (Olyrix) singing of Baroque repertoire. Her critically-acclaimed debut performing French baroque cantatas with Les Délices was hailed as “sensational” (Schmopera) and more engagements with the renowned ensemble have followed.
First prize winner in the 2012 Musica Antiqua Bruges International Harpsichord Competition, Canadian harpsichordist and organist Mark Edwards is recognized for his captivating performances, bringing the listener “to new and unpredictable regions, using all of the resources of his instrument, […] of his virtuosity, and of his imagination” (La Libre Belgique). An active chamber musician, he is the artistic director of Poiesis, collaborates regularly with Les Boréades de Montréal, and has performed with Il Pomo d’Oro, Pallade Musica, and Flûtes Alors!. He has also given solo recitals at the Utrecht Early Music Festival and Brussels’ Bozar and performed concertos with a number of award-winning ensembles, including Il Gardellino (Belgium), Neobarock (Germany), and Ensemble Caprice (Canada). He is currently a PhD student at Leiden University and the Orpheus Instituut, Ghent, where his research examines the intersection of memory, improvisation, and the musical work in seventeenth-century France. Since 2016, he is Assistant Professor of Harpsichord at Oberlin Conservatory.
Historical violinist Jonathan Goya is a PhD student in Musicology at Case Western Reserve University and directs the CWRU Collegium Musicum. They recently presented a lecture-recital on the role of violin duos in the career of Louis Spohr as well as a recital of French Baroque music for the Boston Early Music Festival Online Fringe Concerts. Jonathan is the violist of the mixed chamber ensemble Wit's Folly, which specializes in music from the dawn of Romanticism. Jonathan has served as concertmaster for period orchestras in performances including Handel's Samson and Messiah, Vivaldi's Teuzzone, and led the string band in many of Continuo Collective New York's 17th-century opera projects. Jonathan's dissertation research at CWRU integrates histories of music pedagogy, theory, publishing, and economics to understand how musicians have navigated tumultuous political and economic conditions.
Haitham Haidar is a Lebanese-Palestinian Canadian tenor based in Montreal. He is a proud graduate of Yale's Institute of Sacred Music, McGill's Schulich School of Music, and the University of British Columbia. Praised for his 'ductile,' 'bright,' and 'robust' tenor, Haitham enjoys performing oratorio, opera, and chamber music across North America, Europe, and Asia. Haitham is also a proud member of Kaleidoscope Vocal Ensemble (KVE), whose mission aims to present vocal music with the highest artistic excellence, while celebrating racial, ethnic, and gender diversity. Haitham has been seen as a tenor soloist on a US and European tour with Apollo’s Fire and as the Evangelist in Bach’s St. John Passion at the Winnipeg Baroque Festival. He has also been a recent soloist and ensemble member TENET Vocal Artists, Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra and Conspirare. Coming up, Haitham will be performing as the Evangelist in Schütz’s Weinachtshistorie with Folger Consort as well as the tenor soloist for Bach’s Easter Oratorio with Apollo’s Fire. Haitham’s approach to performance has always been humanity first. Being an Arab immigrant in North America comes with its unique set of oppressive challenges and it is because of that and what he sees around him in the field, that he aims to touch people’s hearts with music and compassion and make change in the world the best way he knows how.
Caitlin Hedge, violin, has been praised for her “dark and earthy…visceral and emotional playing” (Seen and Heard International), and her musicianship and versatility as a genre-crossing multi-instrumentalist captivates audiences. Performing frequently with early music ensembles, she has collaborated with Alkemie, Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra, Apollo’s Fire, and ACRONYM. Recent recordings include debut solo album Stranger (2023), The Galant David Rizzio (2022) with Scottish baroque band Makaris, and Science Ficta’s Ronde de Saisons (2023). Caitlin is currently pursuing her degree in Historical Performance at CWRU.
As a conductor whose work has been praised as “superb” (The New York Times), “well-prepared and joyful” (Detroit Free Press), “excellent,” and “fluent and fresh” (Opera News), Noah Horn recently began tenure as Music Director of Cantata Singers, a prominent ensemble in Boston. His other current positions include serving as chorus master for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and artistic director and founder of the professional vocal ensemble Audivi. With Audivi he has conducted historically-informed landmark performances of Bach’s Mass in B minor and Monteverdi’s Vespers, as well as premiering dozens of new compositions and touring several times around the US. He has worked with ensembles in Austria, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Sweden, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Turkey, Greece, Canada, and the Philippines. Committed to celebrating diversity and inclusion in all areas, Noah co-founded and sings with Kaleidoscope Vocal Ensemble, a group that focuses on a diverse representation in its membership, and which has recently given headliner performances in 2022 at Podium (Canada’s national choral conference) and ACDA’s Southern Regional Convention. He has commissioned dozens of works by composers from a wide variety of cultures and backgrounds, and considers it essential to do the work of advocacy and education with every artistic decision.
The Kaleidoscope Vocal Ensemble presents vocal music with artistic excellence, while celebrating racial, ethnic, and gender diversity. Led by Artistic Director Arianne Abela, the group of professional singers from around the United States have thriving national and international solo careers as well as a love for vocal chamber music, and focus primarily on presenting early and new music. In addition to performances and artistic residencies, the ensemble engages in creative educational outreach to audiences and students, particularly in communities of color, and promotes the study, research, performance, and recording of music from various eras with special attention to the intersection of arts and social justice. KVE has been featured as a headliner ensemble for the ACDA Southern Region Conference in Raleigh, MC and for the 2022 Podium Conference in Toronto. In March 2022 the ensemble premiered 15 new works at the Five Boroughs Music Festival Songbook premiere. Recent performances include a collaboration with the Folger Consort. In 2024, Kaleidoscope will sing as a headliner ensemble for the ACDA Central Division conference, and hold residencies at Nebraska Wesleyan University and University of Iowa. Kaleidoscope has interacted with high school, elementary, and university students all over the United States in workshops, discussions, and performance collaborations.
Soprano Michele Kennedy is a versatile specialist in early classical and new music. Praised by The Washington Post as “a fine young soprano with a lovely voice,” whose “excellent and engaging soprano” possesses "a graceful tonal clarity that is a wonder to hear" (San Francisco Chronicle), Michele's recent venues include Carnegie Hall, Davies Symphony Hall, The Getty Museum, Lincoln Center, and Washington National Cathedral. Michele's recent highlights include the Bach Magnificat and St. John Passion with San Francisco Symphony Chorus, Handel Messiah with Trinity Wall Street NYC, Poulenc Gloria with The Bach Society of Saint Louis, and Undine Smith Moore's Scenes from the Life of a Martyr at UC Berkeley. She's performed The Monteverdi Vespers of 1610 with Dark Horse Consort & The Thirteen Choir, Bach Cantatas w/ American Classical Orchestra, and works by Barbara Strozzi and Francesca Caccini with Folger Consort, alongside Mendelssohn's Midsummer Night's Dream with SF Ballet and the Orchestra of Saint Luke’s. This past season she debuted with Agave Baroque in a feministic In Her Hands recital, and with Shenandoah Bach Festival, Berkeley Early Music Festival, and Portland Baroque Orchestra in June 2022 for some delightful Handelian Fireworks. Michele lives in Oakland, where she enjoys redwood forests and bay vistas with her husband, visual artist Benjamin Thorpe, and their daughter, Audra May.
Grammy® and Latin Grammy® nominee, mezzo-soprano Laura Mercado-Wright, has been lauded by The New York Times as “superb”, “dramatically astute” and “stunningly agile”. She performs and records regularly with Conspirare, and has appeared with other acclaimed ensembles including The Crossing, Seraphic Fire, Vocal Arts Ensemble, and Artefact Ensemble. Notable appearances include Charles Wuorinen’s cantata It Happens Like This with The MET Chamber Ensemble at Carnegie Hall, and the west coast premiere of Toshio Hosokawa’s one-woman opera, The Raven at the Los Angeles International New Music Festival. Ms. Mercado-Wright has appeared as a soloist with the symphony orchestras of Austin, Fort Worth, Dallas, and the Boston Pops with Keith Lockhart. In addition to performing, Laura has been composing since 2020, and has premiered several of her pieces with VAMP, a female vocal quintet based in Austin, Texas. www.lauramercadowright.com
Scott Metcalfe is the director of Blue Heron, acclaimed by The Boston Globe as “one of the Boston music community’s indispensables,” winner of the 2018 Gramophone Classical Music Award for Early Music and the 2015 Noah Greenberg Award. He was music director of New York City’s Green Mountain Project from 2010-19 and has been guest director of TENET, the Handel & Haydn Society, the Tudor Choir and Seattle Baroque, Pacific Baroque Orchestra, Quire Cleveland, and the Dryden Ensemble. Metcalfe also enjoys a career as a baroque violinist, playing with Les Délices (dir. Debra Nagy), L’Harmonie des Saisons (dir. Eric Milnes), and other ensembles. He has edited songs from the Leuven Chansonnier for the Alamire Foundation (Belgium) and is the author of several recently-published essays on performance practice. He has taught at Boston University, Harvard University, the New England Conservatory, and Oberlin Conservatory.
Praised for her “warm, colorful mezzo” by Opera News, Sophie Michaux has become one of North- America’s most versatile and compelling vocalists. Born in London and raised in the French alps, Sophie’s unique background informs her artistic identity, making her feel at home in an eclectic span of repertoire ranging from grand opera to French cabaret songs. Recent solo engagements include the role of Alcina in Caccini’s La Liberation di Ruggiero dall’Isola d’Alcina,(Haymarket Opera), Olofernes in Scarlatti’s La Giuditta (Haymarket Opera), and the Alto solos in the Handel’ Dixit Dominos (Upper Valley Baroque), DeFalla’s El Amor Brujo (Lowell Chamber Orchestra). She is thrilled to collaborate with Blue Heron, The Lorelei Ensemble, Les Délices, The Boston Early Music Festival, Roomful of Teeth, Bach Collegium San Diego, Palaver Strings, and others. Last season, she was also part of the Lorelei Ensemble’s US tour, premiering Her Story by Julia Wolfe with the Boston, Chicago, Nashville, and San Francisco Symphony Orchestras.
A multi-instrumentalist, Allison Monroe has appeared with the Boston Camerata, Newberry Consort, Les Délices, Apollo’s Fire, Atlanta Baroque Orchestra, and Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra, playing violin, viola, vielle, rebec, and singing. Since earning her DMA in Historical Performance Practice from Case Western Reserve University (CWRU), Allison particularly enjoys creating her own musical opportunities: as Artistic Director and performer for Fair and Princely Branches, an album of English Renaissance music, released in 2020; as violinist and violist on an album of classical and early romantic duos with multi-instrumentalist Cynthia Black, recorded in July 2021; and as a founding member and co-director of Cleveland-based medieval ensemble Trobár. In the 2021-22 season, Allison looks forward to resuming live performances as a freelancer, presenting Trobár’s Cleveland series and a residency at Purdue University, Fort Wayne, teaching courses for the Siegal Lifelong Learning Center at CWRU, and directing CWRU’s Collegium Musicum and Baroque Orchestra.
Joseph Monticello’s playing has been praised by the New York Times and Wall Street Journal as “graceful” and for being as “exciting as the singers.” Equally at home on modern and historical flutes, Joseph is the principal flutist of Boston Baroque and assistant principal flutist with the Florida Grand Opera and Palm Beach Symphony, making his home in Miami. Joseph is also a licensed professional of the Yamatogaku style of shamisen, the traditional Japanese three-stringed lute. Under the given name of Yamato Josho, Joseph made his professional debut at the National Theatre of Tokyo in Spring 2023. In addition to several albums with the Nu Deco Ensemble, Joseph’s playing can be heard in the 2022 Disney film, Rosaline, and on The Berlin Friday Academy’s critically-acclaimed “Janitsch: Trio Sonatas” album, released under the Brilliant Classics label. Joseph is a graduate of The Juilliard School, Oberlin Conservatory, and Interlochen Arts Academy. His passion for musical curatorship is furthered by his role as part-time Archivist for the New World Symphony in Miami Beach.
“A baroque oboist of consummate taste and expressivity” (Cleveland Plain Dealer) with a musical approach that’s “distinctly sensual…pliant, warm, and sweet,” (New York Times), Debra Nagy, director, is one of North America’s leading performers on the baroque oboe. She plays principal oboe with the American Bach Soloists, Seattle Baroque Orchestra, and Apollo’s Fire, and is a regular guest with the Handel & Haydn Society, Boston Early Music Festival, and Portland Baroque Orchestra, among other ensembles. Following studies at the Oberlin Conservatory, Conservatory of Amsterdam, and Case Western Reserve University, Debra has received many awards for her creative and scholarly pursuits including first-prize in the American Bach Soloists Young Artists Competition, a 2009 Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities, and a 2010 Creative Workforce Fellowship from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture. She has recorded over 30 CDs with repertoire ranging from 1300-1800 on the Chandos, Avie, CPO, Capstone, Bright Angel, Naxos, and ATMA labels, and has had live performances featured on CBC Radio Canada, Klara (Belgium), NPR’s Performance Today, WQXR (New York City) and WGBH Boston.
Soprano Sherezade Panthaki’s international success in music of the Baroque and beyond has been fueled by superbly honed musicianship; “astonishing coloratura with radiant top notes” (Calgary Herald); “a full, luxuriously toned upper range” (The Los Angeles Times), and passionately informed interpretations, “mining deep emotion from the subtle shaping of the lines” (The New York Times). An acknowledged star in the early-music field, Ms. Panthaki enjoys ongoing collaborations with many of the world’s leading interpreters including Nicholas McGegan, Masaaki Suzuki, Martin Haselböck, Mark Morris, Nicholas Kraemer, Matthew Halls, Stephen Stubbs, and Gary Wedow. Ms. Panthaki is a founding member and artistic advisor of the newly-debuted Kaleidoscope Vocal Ensemble – a vocal octet of world-renown artists of color, celebrating racial and ethnic diversity in performances and educational programs of early and new music.
AMANDA POWELL, soprano, has been praised as “the star of the evening” (Seen and Heard International, UK) and "charismatic and theatrically arresting” (San Francisco Chronicle). A versatile musician, she is at home in repertoire spanning Baroque, Jazz, and global folk styles. Amanda has performed internationally including at the Irish National Opera House, the Aldeburgh Festival (UK), the Metropolitan Museum (New York), the National Gallery (Washington D.C.), and The State Opera Theatre in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. Her 2019 debut as Messiah soloist with Calgary Symphony won kudos as "the soloist of the night... singing to perfection." Amanda is a fluent improvisor and has collaborated with such artists as Bobby McFerrin and Jamey Haddad. Amanda currently tours with the Italian band, Alla Boara (Anthony Taddeo). Amanda is on the voice faculty at Cleveland State University. She is also the Community Arts Liaison for the Cultural Arts Center at Disciples Church, Cleveland Heights.
Cellist and gambist Rebecca Landell Reed’s “luminous” (Cleveland.com) and “notable” (The New York Times) sound elicits a range of expression “from classically evocative to Hitchcock horrifying” (Washingtonian). Her solo appearances include performances with Apollo’s Fire, Atlanta Baroque Orchestra, Les Delices, The Smithsonian, and Batzdorfer Hofkapelle. Rebecca will be working on a Beethoven recording at the Smithsonian this season, along with continued collaborations with Apollo's Fire and Les Delices. Rebecca's teaching career includes her faculty position at the Baroque Performance Institute and at Oberlin Conservatory teaching baroque cello and viola da gamba.
James Reese is a frequently sought tenor soloist with leading orchestras and ensembles throughout North America and Europe. A noted interpreter of baroque music, James gives performances that are both "splendid" (San Francisco Chronicle) and "captivating" (Broad Street Review). He regularly collaborates with notable performers including Philharmonia Baroque, Tafelmusik, the Boston Early Music Festival, the American Bach Soloists, and the Portland Baroque Orchestra. He won a GRAMMY award as a soloist in 2023, appearing on the album Born released by The Crossing. James is also an active recitalist, frequently collaborating with pianist Daniel Overly in song recitals throughout the United States. He is a graduate of Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music, and holds a masters degree from Yale University’s School of Music. He lives in Philadelphia.
Gaia Saetermoe-Howard, praised for her “poignant, pliant sound” (New York Classical Review), performs historical and modern oboes and recorders throughout North America. Her recent engagements include performances with Tempesta di Mare, the Handel and Haydn Society, Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra, Musica Angelica, and the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra. As an artist-scholar, she focuses on contextualizing global perspectives of Baroque music by tracing the background of historical musical styles around the world. Gaia also teaches in her private music studio, and has taught for renowned programs like S’Cool Sounds, the Wildwood Institute of Music, and the Juilliard Music Advancement Program. A student of Gonzalo Ruiz, Geoffrey Burgess, and Richard Killmer, she holds degrees from the Juilliard School, the Eastman School of Music, and the University of Rochester. She originally hails from Los Angeles, but now lives on the East Coast with her fiancé and their many tropical plants.
As a composer, conductor, educator and music director, Brandon Waddles enjoys a multifaceted career spanning the musical gamut. A Detroit native, he is no stranger to the city’s rich musical legacy. Currently Director of Choral Activities at Wayne State University and Artistic Director of the Rackham Choir, Brandon’s commitment to music in schools and community envelops the wealth of his creative experience and outlook. Brandon’s choral compositions and arrangements have been published and performed by choral ensembles around the world. In 2019, he was awarded as the inaugural recipient of the ACDA Diverse Voices Collaborative Grant. In addition, he has worked as a transcriber of Black gospel music for numerous choral octavos, hymnals and hymnal supplements published by GIA, including his work as a contributing editor for the One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism hymnal.
Countertenor Michael Walker II is celebrated both as a brilliant soloist and versatile chamber musician. Praised for his “luminous tone, weighted with pathos,” Michael has performed throughout the world as a recitalist, a soloist with orchestra, and a chamber ensemble member. As an early music specialist, Michael finds pleasure in exploring literature from the medieval, renaissance, and baroque eras. He has been heard as a soloist with the Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra (Bach’s St. John’s Passion), Kokomo Symphony Orchestra (Handel’s Messiah), Marquette Choral Society (Bach’s Magnificat), and Incantare (Schütz, Magnificat). As a new works and contemporary music enthusiast, Michael was the featured soloist in the U.S. premiere of Tarik O'Regan’s Triptych for wind band and the countertenor soloist in Leonard Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms with IU Summer Philharmonic Orchestra. As a passionate advocate for celebrating inclusion, diversity, equity, and access (IDEA) within the classical arts, Michael in collaboration with the historical instrumental ensemble, Alchymy Viols, developed a program of Negro Spirituals arranged for voice and viols da gambas title Deep River: American Spirituals My Mother Taught Me. Also, Michael is a member of the Kaleidoscope Vocal Ensemble; a group of dynamic professional singers that promote IDEA while presenting vocal music with artistic excellence. Michael holds a Master of Music in Early Music Performance Practices from the Historical Performance Institute at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music. Additionally, Michael currently serves as the Major Gifts Officer for the Washington Bach Consort and is Sphinx LEADer Fellow with the Sphinx Organization.
Jonathan Woody is a versatile musician maintaining an active schedule as a bass-baritone soloist, chamber musician and composer across North America. Jonathan appears regularly with historically-informed ensembles including Apollo's Fire, Pacific MusicWorks, the Choir of Trinity Wall Street, Seraphic Fire, Kaleidoscope Ensemble, and TENET Vocal Artists. Festival appearances include the Boston Early Music Festival, Staunton Music Festival, Five Boroughs Music Festival, Portland Bach Festival, Carmel Bach Festival, and the Aldeburgh Festival at Snape Maltings. Recent and upcoming opera roles include Pandolfe in La Servante Maîtresse with Opera Lafayette, Le Grand Prêtre in Circé with Boston Early Music Festival and Elymas/Sorceress in Dido’s Ghost with Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra. Recording credits include the Choir of Trinity Wall Street's Grammy®-nominated Israel in Egypt (Musica Omnia), ACRONYM’s Cantica Obsoleta (Olde Focus Recordings), Boston Early Music Festival’s Circé (CPO), New York Polyphony’s Roma Æterna (BIS Records), and Skylark Ensemble’s it’s a long way.
Violinist Shelby Yamin brings signature vivacity to performances across the globe, from the historic state rooms of George Washington's Mount Vernon to the storied chapel at Versailles. Shelby has appeared as a soloist with Philharmonia Baroque Chamber Players, Voices of Music, New York Baroque Incorporated and The Oregon Bach Festival orchestra. Dedicated to diversifying the canon, Shelby regularly researches, performs, and records lesser known works, including 18th-century repertoire from the music library of Nelly Custis and, more recently, the violin duets of Maddalena Lombardini Sirmen (1745-1818). Shelby's discography includes the first ever recording of Sirmen's entire opus of violin duets on period instruments (Orpheus Classical Label, 2021). Shelby has earned degrees from the Manhattan School of Music, the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and The Juilliard School, where she won the Historical Performance Concerto Competition. In addition to performing regularly with Les Délices in concert, Shelby is the Associate Producer of SalonEra. She currently resides in New York City.
Sue Yelanjian is the Principal Bassist for Apollo's Fire, The Cleveland Baroque Orchestra and performs with many other early music groups including Tafelmusik, Relic, The Handel and Haydn Society and Charlotte Bach Akademie. She recently performed with Il Pomo D'oro for their North American Eden tours with Joyce DiDonato. She has appeared at many music festivals including Tanglewood, Ravinia, Ojai and the Klang Und Raum Festival in Germany. She attended Oberlin Conservatory and received degrees from the Cleveland Institute of Music and Boston University.
Clay Zeller-Townson is the founder of the critically-acclaimed baroque band Ruckus. He is a bassoonist and educator based between Vermont and New York City. As a bassoonist, he plays with the leading period instrument ensembles in North America including: Tafelmusik, The Handel and Haydn Society, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Boston Baroque, Trinity Baroque Orchestra and American Bach Soloists. Clay has given coachings on performance practice and masterclasses at New England Conservatory, UCLA, The Colburn School, The University of Missouri and The Eastman School of Music. Clay was born in Nova Scotia, raised in eastern North Carolina, and found his way to the baroque bassoon by way of the tenor saxophone. He holds a Bachelor’s degree and Performer’s Certificate from The Eastman School of Music, a Master’s degree from The Juilliard School and the Advanced Certificate in Music Education from CUNY-Brooklyn College. A fierce advocate for the arts in rural communities, he teaches K-8 general music two days a week in Stamford and Readsboro, Vermont.