Accompanists - Keyboard

Dmitri Korneev   Dmitri Korneev
Collaborative Pianist - Coordinator
Main Office: 973-655-7212
korneevd@mail.montclair.edu

In addition to his performances as a collaborative pianist at the Cali School, Dmitri Korneev is actively involved in vocal auditions and regional competitions for singers. He is also Executive Director of the “You Need Music” Educational & Performing Enterprise, which holds an annual regional competition with the winner’s recital in Carnegie Hall. As a solo pianist Dmitri spent several years giving recitals throughout Russia, Greece, Italy and United States. His performances in the States included such prestigious concert halls as Carnegie Hall and United Nations Concert Hall in New York. While living in Texas, Dmitri worked at the University of Texas at San Antonio and served as principal accompanist at the San Antonio Lyric Opera. He is a graduate of the Russian Academy of Music (Gnessin) as well as the Central Music School at Moscow State Conservatory. Among Dmitri’s teachers, Prof. Alexandrov and Prof. Slesarev were the most influential.  He has participated in masterclasses held by Claude Frank and Arkady Aronov, and in the La Belle Epoque Festival in New York. In 1998 he became a laureate of the International Piano Competition IBLA Grand Prize in Italy.


Crystl Baltazar   Crystl Baltazar
Adjunct Professor
Theory/Aural Skills
Collaborative Pianist
Vocal Coach
Main Office: 973-655-7212
baltazarc@mail.montclair.edu

Pianist Crystl Sonomura Baltazar maintains the roles of both performing artist and educator. A native of Honolulu, Hawaii, she is a graduate of the University of Hawaii and holds a doctorate from the Eastman School of Music. As a collaborative arts specialist, she accompanies and coaches in many of the voice and instrumental studios, as well as performing with faculty in recital. As a soloist, Ms. Baltazar won awards in the Young Keyboard Artist's Association and International Piano Recording Competitions. Also notable are collaborations in recitals with International Horn Competition Winner, Karl Pituch, and masterclass studies with Dalton Baldwin and Malcolm Bilson. She has performed in several concert series, as well as seasons with the Honolulu Symphony and Chamber Music Hawaii. Her teaching credits include Nazareth College and the New Jersey School of Arts. In addition, she freelances for various vocal, choral and chamber venues in the New York metro area.


Michael S. Caldwell
Collaborative Pianist
Vocal Coach
Main Office: 973-655-7212
caldwellm@montclair.edu

Michael S. Caldwell has degrees in Piano and Vocal Performance from Westminster College (New Wilmington, PA) and Hartt School of Music (Hartford, CT), where he performed in leading roles in The Rape of Lucretia, La Traviata, Cosí fan tutte, and The Rake’s Progress. He appeared with Central City Opera as Angelotti (Tosca), Mercutio (Roméo et Juliette), and Tom/John (Face on the Barroom Floor). At Virginia Opera, he performed as Antonio (Le Nozze di Figaro), Mr. Gobineau (The Medium), and Michael in the world premiere of Michael Ching’s opera Cue 67. A featured baritone at the Steans Institute at Chicago's Ravinia Festival, Michael also has extensive background in art song and lieder, both as pianist and singer. As a pianist, he enjoyed collaborating with the artists at the International Institute of Vocal Arts in Chiari, Italy. Michael has appeared with the Metropolitan Opera extra chorus in Fidelio, Die Meistersinger, Moses und Aron, Lohengrin, Orfeo, and Samson et Dalila.


Hsuan-Wen Chen
Collegium Musicum, Director
Collaborative Pianist
Main Office: 973-655-7212

Hsuan-Wen Chen, pianist and harpsichordist, is a native of Taiwan. She received her Bachelor of Music degree and Master of Music degree in Piano from the Cleveland Institute of Music. She also holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in harpsichord performance at Stony Brook University where she studied with Arthur Haas. Ms. Chen has been Assistant Director for the International Baroque Institute at Longy, Baroque Academy at Amherst Early Music Festival, and Baroque Opera Workshop at Queens College. She is the artistic director of The Soul’s Delight, a period instrument chamber ensemble that seeks to explore the broad spectrum of music of the 17th and 18th century. As an active soloist and chamber music player, Ms. Chen has performed in the United States, Canada, and Taiwan.


Sarah Brett England
Collaborative Pianist
Main Office: 973-655-7212


Diana Hughes
Adjunct Professor
Piano for Non-Majors
Collaborative Pianist

Main Office: 973-655-7212
hughesy@mail.montclair.edu

YiKyung Diana Hughes holds a Doctorate in piano performance from Rutgers University.  She received both a Masters and Bachelors degree in piano from the Mannes School of Music in New York City.  As a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral pianist Diana has performed in South Korea, Spain, the USA and Canada. Currently she is on the faculty at the Bergen Community College and Montclair State University. Diana freelances as a soloist, chamber musician and accompanist in the greater New York area.


Soyeon Kim   Soyeon Kim
Adjunct Professor
Piano
Keyboard Musicianship
Collaborative Pianist/Vocal Coach
Main Office: 973-655-7212
kimsoy@mail.montclair.edu

Soyeon Kim has appeared as a solo and collaborative pianist throughout the United States, Europe and Korea. In 2010, she performed at the Water for Haiti Benefit Concert at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center, and has performed in many similar venues including the Metropolitan Museum of Arts, Zankel Hall at Carnegie Hall, Weill Recital Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, Sejong Center and ArKo Arts Theater in Seoul, Korea, the Croatian Music Institution in Zagreb, Croatia, Konzerthaus in Berlin and Gasteig in Munich, Germany. She has also performed in many chamber series including those sponsored by the Princeton Symphony Orchestra, Cathedral Saint John Divine, Trinity at One, and Music at Penn Alps. She has won awards in several competitions including First Prize and Best interpretation in the Liszt in William Garrison Piano Competition, Second Prize in the Artur Balsam Competition for Duos, and the New Triad Foundation Fellowship (New York City). She has participated in masterclasses with such artists as Marilyn Horne, Thomas Hampson, Anna Moffo, Dalton Baldwin, Glenn Dicterow and Edgar Meyer. She has received B.M. and M.M. degrees in piano performance from Seoul National University, and a M.M. degree and D.M.A. degree in accompanying from Manhattan School of Music.


April Kuhr   April Kuhr
Collaborative Pianist
Vocal Coach
Main Office: 973-655-7212
kuhra@mail.montclair.edu

Pianist April Kuhr received undergraduate degrees in piano performance and accompanying from Pacific Lutheran University and a masters degree in piano performance and literature from the Eastman School of Music. As a Rotary International "Graduate Fellow", she studied at the Konservatorium der Stadt, Wien in Vienna, Austria. Active as a soloist and chamber musician, Ms. Kuhr has performed in Austria, Germany and Italy, as well as throughout the US, including Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall with baritone, Duncan Harman. Recent projects include a solo performance at the Chopin 200 Piano Festival in New York City, a solo piano recital for the Mason County Community Concerts Association, violin/piano duo recitals with Michael Gillette, Susan Heerema and Marya Columbia, oboe and piano and organ performances with Robert LeClair and trumpet/organ duo recitals with Dominic Derasse. Ms. Kuhr is Director of Music at Saint Cecilia's Church in Englewood, NJ. She has served as organist and choir master for the Catholic Chapel at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, where her duties included training and touring with a choir of West Point Cadets. She has also served on the faculties of Hamilton College, Muskingum College, Stephens College and the State University of New York.


Ron Levy   Ron Levy
Collaborative Pianist
Main Office: 973-655-7212
levyr@mail.montclair.edu

Ron Levy has been called "first-class" by the New York Times. He regularly appears as soloist and in partnership with many of the world's leading singers and instrumentalists. A graduate of Oberlin, Mr. Levy is a founding member of the Hudson Trio, Kaleidoscope, the New World Trio, the Manchester Chamber Players, the Breuckelen Trio, and the Palisades Virtuosi; he has been pianist and harpsichordist of the Oberlin Orchestra, the Adelphi Chamber Orchestra, the New Jersey and North Jersey Philharmonics, the Westchester Symphony, and the Albany Symphony. Presently he is Associate Artist with the All Seasons Chamber Players, and is the pianist of the Orpheus Men's Chorus and Ridgewood Choral. Recordings by Mr. Levy are available on the Albany, Centaur, Eroica, Koch International, MMF and High Point labels. In the summer of 2008, Mr. Levy made his debuts in St. Petersburg, Russia, and at the venerable Stratford Summer Music Festival, CA.


Mary Pinto
Collaborative Pianist
Main Office: 973-655-7212

Accompanist and vocal coach Mary Pinto has worked with international opera singers and major American opera companies for the past 25 years. She served as a coach for Metropolitan Opera star and International soprano, Deborah Voigt in preparation for the three Brünnhilde's for the Met's 2011-2012 production of the Wagner Ring Cycle. Ms. Pinto appears in the documentary, Wagner's Dream: The Making of the Met's Ring which has been broadcast globally. She also privately coached many singers, including a young Susan Graham. She has been a coach for the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Ryan Opera Center, preparing performances ranging from Don Giovanni to Bright Sheng's The Song of Majnun and Bruce Saylor's Orpheus Descending. She worked as a rehearsal pianist and coach at Florentine Opera of Milwaukee, where she prepared singers for Tosca, Otello and André Chénier, and was a staff rehearsal pianist for Dallas Opera, working on Carmen with Denyce Graves. She served as the audition pianist for the Metropolitan Opera National Council Regional Auditions in San Antonio and Chicago. In addition to coaching and teaching, she recently served as rehearsal pianist and harpsichordist for New Jersey State Opera's production of Il barbiere di Siviglia.


Steven Ryan   Steven Ryan
Collaborative Pianist
917-414-3025
ryans@mail.montclair.edu
Steven W. Ryan - Website

Steven W. Ryan joined the Cali School faculty in 2006. He has performed as an orchestral keyboardist with most of the major orchestras in New York City, including members of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. He has played celesta with the legendary Berlin Philharmonic at Carnegie Hall; piano, harpsichord, and portative organ with the Dessoff Choirs; and synthesizer with the Moody Blues rock band. He has collaborated with conductors such as Lorin Maazel, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Neeme Järvi, Bernhard Haitink, Gerard Schwarz, and Maxim Shostakovich, among others. Mr. Ryan took first place in the 2001 Concours des Grands Amateurs de Piano. At the close of this international competition he was engaged to perform Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-Flat Minor at the Sorbonne in Paris.  In addition to winning the French competition, Steven took second prize in the 2000 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition for Outstanding Amateurs.


 Victoria Schwartzman

Victoria Schwartzman
Collaborative Pianist 
Vocal Coach
Main Office: 973-655-7212
schwartzmanv@mail.montclair.edu

Born in St. Petersburg, Russia, pianist Victoria Schwartzman has performed internationally as a soloist and chamber musician. She has performed at the Music Mountain Festival with members of the St. Petersburg String Quartet, in the New York Philharmonic Ensembles series at Merkin Hall, at Bargemusic, and the Nicolas Roerich Museum concert series in New York City. As a member of the Yanvar Trio, she was a prizewinner in the Val-Tidone Chamber Music Competition and a finalist in the Zinotti International Chamber Music competition, both in Italy. She is a member of the Brahms Piano Quartet. She has performed as soloist with the Jerusalem Chamber Orchestra and the Riverside Orchestra. She has participated in the Tel-Hai International Piano Festival in Israel and the Lyrica Chamber Music Festival in New Jersey. She was vocal coach and accompanist at Boston Lyric Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, the Brevard Music Center, and the American Institute of Musical Studies Festival in Graz, Austria. She graduated from Jerusalem Conservatory, and studied at the Longy School of Music and New England Conservatory. She has performed in masterclasses given by Menahem Pressler and Richard Goode, among others. Her principal teachers include Irina Kivaiko, Issak Kossov, Victor Rosenbaum, Sally Pinkas, and Eda Shlyam.


Barry Spatz
Collaborative Pianist - Musical Theatre
Main Office: 973-655-7212


Matthew Stephens
Collaborative Pianist
Main Office: 973-655-7212


Michael Wittenburg
Collaborative Pianist
Main Office: 973-655-7212

Hailed as a “real virtuoso” by the late Ruth Laredo, pianist and conductor Michael Shane Wittenburg made his professional opera conducting debut with Amore Opera's recent production of Faust and has served with multiple opera companies including in Nashville, Orlando, and Sarasota. As an Assistant Professor of Music at Lee University, he was Music Director of both the Chamber Orchestra and Opera Theatre. He has made solo appearances as pianist with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, The Chattanooga Symphony and Opera, the World Youth Symphony Orchestra, the Eastman Wind Ensemble, and the Ocala (FL) Symphony as both pianist and conductor, and he has appeared in collaborative recital with such artists as Metropolitan Opera soprano Stella Zambalis and concert violinist Livia Sohn.