Kai Ono is a composer-pianist, raised in the bustling suburbs of Irvine, California and currently living in the mosaic city of Queens, New York. He likes the color grey, the sound of laughter, and things that fly.
A player and writer of multiple genres, Kai has demonstrated his prowess in performance and composition with his numerous national and international awards in competitions, including his recent Downbeat Magazine student award for a big band composition and Rosalyn Tureck Award for a Bach performance. Recently, he was a featured artist in the Classical Beat festival in Eutin, Germany, where he had the opportunity to perform in classical and jazz groups as well as give a European premiere of one of his pieces.
Kai’s primary goal as an educator is to teach freedom in musicians. Through his years of teaching, he has emphasized technique and ear training that give students the choice to perform difficult classical works, read jazz chords, play pop songs by ear, or freely improvise. Recently graduated from the University of Kansas with a BM in Piano Performance and Composition with distinction, Kai is eternally grateful for his amazing mentors he’s had thus far – classical piano with Dr. Scott McBride Smith and jazz with TJ Martley.
John started playing the piano the summer before his seventh birthday, continuing a tradition of music that was passed down from his guitarist father and vocalist mother.
The following thirty years would bring experiences in concert performance, musical theatre (where he would meet his future wife), vocal accompaniment, Big Band Swing Orchestra, and an opportunity to
play Mozart on the Fibonacci Steinway Grand Piano.
His training includes fifteen years’ piano instruction in the Orf and Suzuki methods, ten years of musical theatre performance, five years of Dalcroze education culminating in a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education from California State University, Dominguez Hills and over thirty years of playing the piano.
John’s teaching experience includes private vocal and piano lessons, The Imagination Machine creative writing program and, as an Alzheimer's Caregiver for six years, John has witnessed therapeutic qualities
of music. He believes that it is never too early to teach music, and it is never too late to learn.
Renée's love of piano started as a young child when she would spend hours at the pianos at her friends' homes in Chicago. She would learn to play her favorite songs by decoding the harmonies, melodies and rhythmic figures. Renée convinced her parents to begin music training several years later and went on to pursue a BA in music from Columbia College Chicago and a MMEd (master's degree in music education) from VanderCook College of Music.
Following graduation from her master's degree, Renée operated her own music studio in Chicago for 7 years before leaving in 2017 to pursue music in New York City. Renée has toured the US with various bands and ensembles over the years including an indie-rock quintet, a 10-piece chamber rock ensemble, Girl Group Chicago, a big band orchestra and as a solo musician. Renée has accompanied for the Music in the Parks competition and has participated as a theatre pit musician in various Chicago productions for Porchlight Music Theatre, Stage Door Fine Arts and The Neo-Futurists. She composes and performs her own music and recently released her debut solo album.
Renée teaching specialty is with children and young adults but enjoys teaching students of all ages. She works with each student to develop a curriculum that is in line with the student's goals. Renée strives to keep lessons fun while helping students discover their musical voices. She teaches rock, pop, folk, classical and songwriting.
Evelyn Hu has been teaching piano professionally for more than fifteen years. A graduate from the renowned Berklee College of Music, Mrs. Hu is a composer, conductor and pianist. She served as judge for the youth piano competition SYMF, and as member of China National Orchestra Youth Series Committee. Trained in both classical and jazz styles, Mrs. Hu encourages her students to be creative, disciplined, and most importantly - to enjoy music.
A native of Italy, Daniela Ginatempo O'Reilly lived in Puerto Rico since 2004 and moved to Los Angeles in 2016. She joined the University of Puerto Rico in 2009, where she spent two years studying foreign languages and taking music courses with her piano professor Félix Rivera. O'Reilly moved to the Conservatory of Music of Puerto Rico in 2011, and completed a bachelor's degree in Piano Performance, under the tutelage of the same teacher. She accompanied other instrumentalists and participated in ensembles of chamber music, and even collaborated with the Orchestra of the UPRRP and Orchestra of the Conservatory of Music.
She is certified to teach the Suzuki method, which she taught as a piano teacher at the Conservatory of Music of Puerto Rico and has extensive experience teaching pianists of all ages. She has an ongoing passion to share her knowledge and love for music, and helps her students to achieve their best. She has taught Classical, Pop, Rock and Contemporary music.
Some of her favorite composers are: J. S. Bach, S. Rachmaninoff, R. Schumann, S. Prokofiev, D. Shostakovich, Béla Bartók, Nobuo Uematsu, David Buckley, Yhann Tiersen and many more.
Manuele took his first steps in the music world at the young age of four, exploring the beautiful notes of the opera from works by composers such Verdi and Puccini. He later attended “Girolamo Frescobaldi” State Conservatory in Ferrara, where he studied piano, harmony, composition, and chamber music. He often received high praises through article reviews and from critics.
For six years, he had committed himself to teaching music to children and actively collaborated to the creation of the music department at Smiling Service International School of Ferrara.
As a film composer, Manuele has widespread approval from the public and critics for his particularly charming and profound music. He has developed numerous collaborations with Award Winning Directors, as well as International emerging companies. One of his accomplishments include composing soundtrack for the CICAP chaired by the famous journalist-TV presenter Piero Angela, and the Docu-Fiction: Breaking the Silence that was directed by Frank Gigante.
Yuliana Wijaya is an up and coming young pianist from Indonesia who has already attained national and international success.
She began her musical training at age eight privately and later on, moved to Jakarta Conservatory of Music in Indonesia and Shenyang Conservatory of Music in China. In 2012, she moved to Lawrence, KS to study under tutelage Dr. Steven Spooner. She is currently a graduate student in Manhattan School of Music. A recent graduate of the University of Kansas, is an active participant in summer music festivals. She has performed in concerts and masterclasses around the world. In 2014, she was selected to perform with University of Allicante Orchestra in Italy under baton Dan Wen Wei.
As an educator, she has years of experience working with children of all ages and levels. Her students are active performers and are frequently featured in recitals at the Lawrence Arts Center, in addition to MTNA and Lawrence Accredited Music Teacher Association's events. Her focus in teaching is to retain the interest and joy of music in each student while building up their ability and skills continously. Her strength is classical music. However, she also combines and introduces other genres like jazz, pop, etc., to her students. Yuliana is also an active collaborator and ballet accompanist.
Jacqueline has played piano since she was 5, and her teaching experience began soon after when she would eagerly share her musical ideas with her friends. She loves teaching and considers it fundamental to her music practice. Originally from Chicago, she has lived and taught in various cities around the world before making her way to New York City- and her vast piano repertoire is a reflection of that. She studied jazz performance at California Polytechnic Institute in San Luis Obispo, CA and and subsequently led several jazz combos in the central coast of California. She has also lived in The Netherlands and in Madrid, Spain for several years, where she formed a love of international folk and pop music including Spanish flamenco rhythms and French chanson. She earned a masters degree from University of Illinois - Chicago while she concurrently taught for four years at the Old Town School of Folk Music. In Chicago, Jacqueline led a chamber trio and several experimental electronic collaborations to perform in many of the city's most historic venues. Currently, she performs with the collective "Palace Sound" and composes and produces solo piano and electronic pieces that feature looping of various synthesizers. She has also begun designing scores for short films and commercials and she is currently writing a dissertation about the theory of film sound. She teaches from beginning to advanced classical music, jazz and music theory, composition, and rock/pop/electronic. She is enthusiastic to work with students of any level who want to expand their skills and repertoire.
A Canadian born jazz pianist and educator, Sean Fyfe has a background that spans across Canada as well as in New York city, having been featured as a leader as well as a guest artist in festivals and on recordings. He has developed a style of teaching that is fun and effective for students of all ages, giving them all the tools they need to understand, play and enjoy music for a lifetime. Sean holds a bachelor's degree in music performance from McGill University, and a graduate degree in music performance from Manhattan School of Music.
A versatile pianist, Dr. Jin Lee has performed as a recitalist and soloist with orchestras throughout North America and abroad. She has been featured as a soloist with the Seoul Symphony, the Chungjoo Orchestra, and the Poland Krakow National Orchestra. Jin has also participated in various music festivals, including the San Francisco International Music Festival, Boston Conservatory Summer Music Workshop, Algonquin Music Festival in Canada, and Aspen Music Festival, where she has performed with Aspen Contemporary Ensemble. She has also performed with the San Francisco International Music Festival as a guest artist. She is a skilled teacher and has extensive teaching experience at both the collegiate and preparatory levels, serving as a lecturer in piano literature, keyboard harmony and class piano at several universities and music institutes. Jin is pursuing both a professional and an academic music career. she possesses a great understanding and compassion for her students and it is her goal to extend her knowledge and love of music to each child she teaches. As an experienced educator, she is both theory and piano coach of ABRSM and her students receive high scores each year. She has also been honored to study with the world renowned pedagogue, Nelita True, her mentor from the Eastman School of Music, where she obtained a master's degree in Piano Performance and studied at the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University with the Graduate Performance Diploma under the tutelage of Marian Hahn. Jin holds a Doctor of Musical Arts at Pennsylvania State University.
Eun-Hye Grace Sun is a composer, pianist, educator and arranger. Originally from Seoul, South Korea, she began her musical training at age six, focused on classical music, and church music.
At age 16, she moved to Russia and graduated pre-conservatory of St. Petersburg in piano major. Afterwards, she entered St. Petersburg State conservatory where she studied piano and composition under Sergey Slonimsky and Felix Tamulyevich. In 2010, she moved to New York and transferred to Aaron Copland School of Music where she has graduated in composition major with high honors. She studied composition with David Schober and Jazz Piano with Jeb Patton. Ms.Sun has been performing actively with different ensembles and choirs, which span a variety of genres including classical, jazz, gospel and pop.
As an educator, she has been teaching piano and music theory classes at levels ranging from early childhood development as well as advanced level for 10 years. According to her experiences from three different countries, she mixes and matches methods what work the best depending on the student. Ms.Sun’s teaching focuses on helping students enjoy the music by emphasizing musicality and maintain a balance between musical technique and music theory. She also encourages students to interpret stories or specific scenes through music.
From Nagano, Japan, Hitomi Honda started her piano lessons at five years old. She was an active accompanist from age ten to fifteen in her hometown. However, due to her left hand pinky's serious injury, she had to stop her piano career. At the age of twenty, she moved to New York to study English as well as music since her love of music never ended. In 2006, she enrolled at City College of New York to study music history. Her music history professor, Arison Deane, then suggested for her to audition for piano performance when she noticed Hitomi's piano talents. She continued her studies at the Brooklyn College Conservatory of Music for her Master of Piano Performance in 2009 with Dr. Adam Kent. Upon her graduation in 2011, she participated in multiple festivals including the Metropolitan International Piano Festival; and the Keyboard Festival by Mannes College of Music with scholarship in 2012. In spite of relatively short career on her piano, she achieved a high level of piano techniques. Her debut in Japan took place in Tokyo in 2011. Since then, she continues to perform in various venues in New York City. Her performance of J.S. Bach had been used for the Japanese movie Odayaka, which was invited to Tribeca Film Festival in 2013.
She believes that learning to play the piano helps with memorization and presenting oneself in front of people. These experience are essential to a student's everyday life -- young or old. It is important for Ms. Hitomi to enrich her students' lives with such goals all while teaching them how to play the piano beautifully!
Laura Harrison Ryan received her Master of Music from Boston University and her Bachelor of Music from Butler University.
Most recently, Ms. Ryan taught in Los Angeles at UCLA Lab School and the Laurence School for an Emmy award winning organization, Childrens Music Workshop. She performed often in LA and completed a European tour in 2012 with her ensemble, appearing in Paris, Amsterdam, Berlin, Prague, London, Copenhagen and Cejero, Denmark.
In New York, Ms. Ryan has appeared at Webster Hall, Hiro Ballroom, 92nd Street Y Tribeca, Knitting Factory, Le Poisson Rouge and Issue Project Room. She has performed at BAM Next Wave Festial, Suoni Per il Popolo (Montreal) and WIRE Magazine Adventures in Modern Music festival.
Ms. Ryan's teaching focuses on establishing a strong foundation of music theory and instrumental technique. She encourages her students to challenge themselves through performance and competition while sustaining their imagination through inspired musical exploration.
As the proud and lucky mother of an amazing five year old boy, Ms. Ryan is thrilled to share her talents and love of music with her students through Wunderkeys.
Chris DeAngelis began playing the piano at age 8, and began teaching and playing professionally while in high school. He earned a B.A. in Music from UMass Boston, during which time he was twice commissioned by the university to compose for the University Chorus, and composed musical scores for several student films and plays.
For the past ten years, Chris has worked as a professional musician, appearing on several albums and touring extensively through the United States and Europe with jazz and classical ensembles, and several bands. He has also composed music for film and television promotions, most recently composing for the official 2012 South Asian International Film Festival promotional trailer.
In addition to private piano instruction, Chris has since 2009 worked as a Teaching Artist at LeAp, an award-winning New York City public school program. At PS 279 in the Bronx, Chris teaches both a Piano Performance class and a Songwriting / Composition / Recording class.
When Chris was a young piano student, his teacher was extremely encouraging of his creative process, and as a teacher Chris has always worked to incorporate a student's aesthetic inspirations into the methods of formal training. Whether a student is sight-reading, composing, or training his or her ear, there is always a wealth of knowledge to be gained. Chris has always worked to accommodate the unique styles and goals of each student to build confidence and independence, and to explore creativity.
Inspired by watching her mother play Fur Elise, Jennifer Roberts began studying piano at the age of 5. She soon developed an interest in learning other instruments and slowly added cello, gyil (African xylophone), and steel drum to her list.
Jennifer studied piano performance at Oakland University in Michigan with Flavio Varani. While there, she played a piano concerto with the Pontiac Oakland Symphony, and she received the Outstanding Student in Piano award. In 1998, Jennifer had the honor of becoming the first African-American to receive a Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance at Oakland University. This has inspired her even more to move forward in the world of music and teaching piano.
As an active musician, Jennifer has been involved in many areas of music with different instruments. With piano she has been enjoying teaching private piano lessons for the past nine years. She has been an accompanist for choirs, solo instrumentalists and vocalists for the past 11 years. For eight years she was a cellist in two community orchestras as well as the Hartford Cello Ensemble which was led by Nadine Delury. In 2003 Jennifer and her duet partner won the 7th place award in the Trinidad Steel Pan Festival, which was held in Trinidad and Tobago. Jennifer also performed with Southpaw Isle in Manhattan as a part of the first African Xylophone Festival.
Jennifer believes that music is a gift to share, not to hide or keep to oneself. It is her dream and determination to continue the tradition of classical piano with others.