Group Class Instructors

dianeaureliusDIANE AURELIUS (2015) Music for Children. Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Diane has been working in the field of early childhood education as a Waldorf teacher and preschool director since 2001. She graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara with a BA in Liberal Arts. She then completed training from The Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training with emphasis on early childhood education. A passion for language and travel, Diane lived and worked in Israel, and Holland, and visited parts of Africa, Cuba, India, the Middle East and Europe. Working as a choreographer and dancer, she created satirical semi-biographical dances from 1990-1995, and performed her original works at ODC, Brady Street Studios, and Theater Artaud. Diane brings her love of movement and story-telling to her work teaching music for children. A current student at the CMC, Diane is a member of Bill Fiege’s woodwind ensemble class, playing alto saxophone, as well as studying privately with Dorothy Barnhouse.

DOROTHY BARNHOUSE (1974), sight singing, voice, Singing Rounds and Canons. BA, Linguistics, Harvard University; Voice and Vocal Pedagogy, Musikhochschule, Berlin; MEd, Education, Harvard University; MA, Music Theory, San Francisco State University. Dorothy performed as mezzo-soprano soloist in Germany, Boston and the Bay Area. From 1988-1999, she trained youth to teach music to children in barrios of Managua, Nicaragua. Dorothy resumed teaching at CMC in 1999.
Also speaks Spanish.

javier cabanillasJAVIER CABANILLAS (2012), Mission District Young Musicians Program. Conga player, composer and educator Javier Cabanillas is most recognized for his recording and touring work as conga player for GRAMMY-Award Winner Pacific Mambo Orchestra. Cabanillas started his musical career in the marginalized areas of Tijuana, Mexico. National and international travel landed him studies at San Diego State University and The Jazzschool Institute in Berkeley. Cabanillas has performed for television programs, festivals, and prestigious venues and has been featured in various magazines, newspapers and website articles for his playing, teaching, touring and recording contributions in the genres of Tropical, Latin Jazz and World Music. Cabanillas enjoys sharing historical, traditional and technical styles with his students that lead up to an ensemble and performance setting. He then builds his students’ confidence, providing them a safe place to make mistakes and challenges them to listen and play from their hearts. Cabanillas has taught in private music education systems in Mexico and from kindergarden-high school in the California public schools. Also speaks Spanish.

IRENE CHAGALL (1984), Music For Children. Irene Chagall has been making music with young children for more than twenty-five years. She has taught music and puppetry at numerous elementary schools San Francisco and Marin County. She was appointed as a Research Associate with the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage from 2006-09, and is currently directing Let’s Get the Rhythm, a documentary on handclapping games, in collaboration with Steve Zeitlin and City Lore of New York, with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, Traditional Arts division. She plays with CMC’s Middle Eastern Ensemble. She is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley. Her Master of Arts degree is from Lone Mountain College, University of San Francisco. She completed one year of intensive private study of classical guitar with Maestro Jose Tomas in Alicante, Spain.

nola_curtisNOLA CURTIS (2013), Community of Voices accompanist. Nola Curtis a.k.a. Cyd Qurtisse is a vocalist, musician, teacher, dancer/choreographer, and former ice skating coach with a Bachelors of Science in Business Management and a minor in music. She is also a student of world-renowned music virtuoso, producer and author Maestro Curtis, of whom she is married with five children. Her husband has worked with a legendary who’s who of musical icons. Nola has worked as a session vocalist on some 15 CD recordings, has opened for music icons like Michael Franti and has had the honor of being lead vocalist with the Internationally known Jazz Hieroglyphics. Nola has performed in some of the most famous venues in the San Francisco Bay Area including the Palace of Fine Arts, the Great American Music Hall, John Lee Hooker’s Boom Boom Room, Rassela’s Jazz Club, the Sheba Lounge, the Buriel Clay Theatre, the Juneteenth Festivals, the Fillmore Jazz Festival, and at the historic Marcus Books, which was once the home of the famed jazz venue, Bop City. Nola’s skills as a musician, singer, dancer, and performer, have been a direct result of the great teachers that have guided her career and she finds it a great privilege to take on the role of a teacher herself.

richard daquioagRICHARD DAQUIOAG (2015), Community of Voices accompanist. Richard Daquioag, MS (Piano Accompanist) was born and raised in San Francisco. He received a BA in English from UC Berkeley and a Masters in Social Work from San Francisco State University. Although he learned how to read music in the third grade, he only began his music studies in 1995 at the Community Music Center while on a break from Social Work. He benefited from piano instruction at the Community Music Center. He began playing professionally at San Francisco local clubs soon after his studies began. He can be heard regularly at the Revolution Café and RiteSpot with his trio and quartet, Conscious Contact.

EVELYN DAVIS (2016), piano, Young Musicians Program Instructor. Detroit native and general wanderer Evelyn Davis is an inside/prepared/new music pianist, improvisor, pipe organist, composer, vocalist, synthesist, teacher, songstress, and maker of /participator in oddly shaped musics with an occasional side of performance art. Most recently this last propensity manifested in joining with Bay Area weirdos Jack o’ the Clock, and longtime indie-pop band Lunchbox, and life tics along, with the constant hum of teaching, song-writing and recording, forever exploring classical music, and improvising with friends. Evelyn holds an AA in Jazz Performance from the School for Music Vocations at Southwestern Community College, a Bachelor’s in Composition from the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, and a Master’s in Performance and Improvisation from Mills College.
Mission District Branch

BILL FIEGE (1989), clarinet, flute, saxophone, Woodwind Ensemble. A lesson is a journey, many sounds from many times and places. I act as a facilitator to guide you to the technique and skills you will need to make your own music, and to be comfortable playing the written and improvised music that you enjoy. To make yesterday’s music live in the moment and to find the sounds you want are some of the goals. I have spent the last half century making public and private music as often as possible. Big bands of Les Elgart, and Federico Cervantes, R&B with Little Anthony, film & radio credits are a few highlights. BM Berklee College of Music MM San Francisco Music and Arts Institute. Some theory, some technique some history, some discovery, some fun, is the mantra. “Let the beauty that we love be what we do.” – Rumi

SCOTT FOSTER (1992), Inner City Young Musicians Program. Scott Foster received his Bachelor of Music degree from Berklee College of Music in Boston. He pursued additional music studies at University of California Davis and private studies with Jon Damian, Rick Peckham and Henry Robinett. Scott is an active performer as leader of the Scott Foster Trio and Quartet and as a sideman with many local groups. His recent recordings range from industrial pop to country and folk to modern jazz.


CHRALIE GURKE (2015), saxophone, CMC Jazz Ensemble.
Charlie is a saxophonist, composer, and educator active in the jazz and latin music scenes in the San Francisco Bay Area. You can hear him perform at venues and festivals around the bay with his own ensemble, Gurkestra, with cuban son quintet Latido, and with the salsa band Candela. Charlie teaches jazz ensembles and jazz history at Laney College in Oakland, CA, has been an artist-in-residence at the SF School of the Arts, and a performing artist with the SF Symphony’s Adventures in Music program. He holds a BA in music composition from Cal State East Bay, and a MM in jazz studies from the University of Oregon, where he was a graduate teaching fellow.
Mission District Branch

JONO KORNFELD (2000), theory, composition, jazz piano, ear training, sight singing, theory/musicianship group classes. MA in Composition and post-graduate music study, SFSU; BA, English, University of Rochester, NY. Composition/theory studies with Ronald Caltabiano, Carlos Sanchez-Gutierrez, Richard Festinger at SFSU, and with Michael Czajkowski at the 2001 Aspen Music Festival. Jazz and classical piano studies with Adam Domash. Author, Music Theory and Notation for Intelligent Beginners. On the faculty at SFSU and also teaches privately.

JOHN KYRK (1999), Children’s Chorus Accompanist. BA, Syracuse University; MA, Harvard University. John has played piano since he could reach the keys, and he became an organist and choir director at twelve. He continues to play and compose, and is also a CMC recital accompanist. As a musical coach, he explores musicianship and performance. He also built a clavichord from scratch.

ANN LAM (2011), Young Musicians Program Instructor. Violinist Ann Lam has performed in major concert venues across the country, including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and the Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center. Through her outreach work as a solo, chamber, and orchestral musician in classrooms across the globe, she strives to joyfully impart music fundamentals while fostering a curiosity for lifelong learning. Privately, Ann teaches violin to students of all ages and levels, with a special emphasis on body and breath awareness. She received her master of music degree in violin performance from the State University of New York at Purchase, where she also served on faculty teaching and assisting undergraduate courses in music appreciation and music history. Ann recently moved from New York City, where she served as principal second violin of Camerata Notturna. She is delighted to call San Francisco home and excited to be a part of Community Music Center.

ARWEN LAWRENCE (2015), Camp CMC Director. Arwen Lawrence is vocalist, dancer, and player of traditional Latin American rhythm guitars and small percussion. As a vocalist, her special attention to poetry, emotion and phrasing has won her acclaim as one of the favorite interpreters of Mexican song and bolero of her contemporaries. Arwen began her performing career as a mariachi singer, guitarist and folklórico dancer in Los Angeles. In 1999, she co-founded Cascada de Flores, a music ensemble dedicated to the exploration, preservation and dissemination of Northern Latin American music and dance. They have 4 recordings, and perform locally, nationally and internationally for both adults and children. Arwen is also an educator. She earned her Masters in Music Education at Holy Names University in Oakland, specializing in the use of traditional music in the elementary Spanish-immersion classroom.

HECTOR LUGO (2014), Musical Discovery Camp, Mission Kids Co-op. Hector Lugo is a percussionist, singer, songwriter, producer, and educator. A native of Puerto Rico, he has performed and recorded with a variety of prominent artist in the Bay Area’s Latin, Jazz, and Afro-Caribbean music scenes, including Louis Romero and Grupo Mazacote, the Larry Vuckovich Jazz-Latin Quartet, Jackeline Rago and the Venezuelan Music Project, Bobby Céspedes and Conjunto Céspedes, John Santos and the Machete Ensemble, and many other internationally-known artists. He is the founder and director of the Caribbean roots music and dance ensemble La Mixta Criolla and musical director of the Afro-Puerto Rican folkloric ensemble Aguacero. Hector has lectured on the history of Puerto Rican music at Stanford University, UC Berkeley, Mills College, San Francisco State University, and Humbolt State University, and has taught workshops on Latin percussion in the Bay Area, Mexico, and Spain. He is founder and co-director of The Bomba y Plena Workshop at La Peña Cultural Center and coordinator of the Music of Our World program of the Oakland Youth Chorus. Mr. Lugo has a Masters in Sociology from UC Berkeley, and has done extensive research on the sociology and cultural history of Latin America and the Caribbean. Also speaks Spanish.

MICHAEL MOHAMMED (2009), Opera and Musical Theater Scenes Workshop. Michael Mohammed is a director and performer. Directing credits include X: The Life & Times of Malcolm X (Oakland Opera Theater), River of Women (Opera Cultura), and What They Seem (Two Mimes Productions). His production of Wilde Boys (New Conservatory Theater) is a 2008 Bay Area Critics Circle Award winner for Best Musical Production. He has also directed for Peninsula Teen Opera, Bay Area Summer Opera Theatre Institute, Goat Hall Productions, and Pocket Opera. He is on faculty at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and New Conservatory Theater.

ERIK PEARSON (2002), guitar (acoustic and electric), banjo and ukulele. Erik studied Music Composition and Cultural Anthropology at Oberlin College and Conservatory of Music. He has played and recorded in many bands, written chamber music for local choreographers, and performs with internationally known storyteller Diane Ferlatte. The styles he teaches
range from old time folk music and singer-songwriters to free-improv jazz-rock. Most recent projects include: The Evie Ladin Band, Crooked Jades, Nearly Beloved, Sonya Hunter, Mushroom, and Billy Talbot.

JENNIFER PERINGER (2000), piano, Beginning Latin Jazz Workshop, Building Performance Skills, Chamber Music Ensembles. Jennifer Peringer earned a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of London, and both a Master of Music degree and a Music Teaching Credential from San Francisco State University. Her musical horizons are broad; she has played keyboards, congas, tablas, saxophone, and accordion with salsa, latin jazz, Indian music, folk and pop bands. Her work as a classical pianist involves solo performances, vocal and theatrical accompaniment, and collaboration with various chamber music ensembles, including her trio The Bernal Hill Players. She has been teaching at CMC since 2000, where she currently offers classes in piano (primarily Classical and Latin Jazz), ear training, beginning Latin Jazz ensembles, and a variety of classical Chamber Music ensembles. She individualizes curriculums to meet her students’ needs, and uses a wide variety of teaching strategies, including hands-on games, physical technical exercises, learning by ear, learning to read music, intellectual analysis, and intuitive improvisation. Also speaks Spanish.

BILLY PHILADELPHIA (2015), Older Adult Choir Director and Accompanist. Billy Philadelphia has played many of the pianos in the Bay Area in the past 40 years. In cabaret, he has performed nationwide with his wife, Meg Mackay. They have recorded three CD’s. As a musical director, Billy has led several older adult choirs and has worked in television, theatre (Berkeley Rep, San Jose Rep, Aurora Theatre) and accompanied the incomparable Dame Edna in her San Francisco debut. He is co-author and lead actor in Hoagy, his tribute to songwriter/actor Hoagy Carmichael, which has had productions in San Francisco, Milwaukee and Miami. Billy has also taught since he was 16 years old when his piano teacher referred a beginning student to him. He has taught at many schools, most recently nine years at Convent of the Sacred Heart High School. He has enjoyed a 20-year run at One Market Restaurant, where he currently plays on Friday and Saturday nights. His favorite gig of all time was playing the calliope while leading the parade honoring the 2012 World Champions, San Francisco Giants.

ELLEN ROBINSON (1985), Anything Goes Chorus I and II Director. Ellen Robinson is a true pied piper of singing. One of the San Francisco Bay Area’s busiest music directors, she has helped take many a vocalist from the level of simply wanting to sing to the stage. She has sung folk, rock, Broadway, a cappella, jazz and is notable for guiding vocalists toward mastery of nearly any genre of song. Ellen is definitely at home as a jazz vocalist and performer herself with a bevy of concerts at major venues (Yoshi’s, Freight and Salvage) as well as recording and producing her own jazz CDs. Ellen founded (1980) and directs the Anything Goes Chorus. She also teaches jazz singing at The California Jazz Conservatory and is a vocal coach for musical theater classes at Stagebridge, the nation’s oldest senior theatre company. She received a Bachelor of Music from Ithaca College, completed graduate studies at Bank Street College of Education, SUNY-Stony Brook, Hofstra University and C.W. Post, and is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing.

MARTHA RODRIGUEZ-SALAZAR (2000), ear training, flute, piano, recorder, sight singing, voice, Director of CMC’s Older Adult Choirs and Community of Voices Choirs, Latin Music Vocal Workshop, Camp CMC, Mission District Young Musicians Program Project Coordinator. Recognized as a “Luminary” in 2011 by the Mexican Consulate in SF and most recently as “Excelencia Latina” by LAM and Mundo Fox, singer, flutist, conductor and producer Martha Rodríguez-Salazar has been bringing Latin American folk, classical and contemporary music to the Bay Area for more than 15 years. As a core member of the Bernal Hill Players, she has been involved in the commissioning and performing vibrant, rhythmic, energetic new work by Bay Area and Mexican composers that challenge commonly-held assumptions about new music. Born in Mexico and classically-trained at Mills College as a concert flutist and opera singer, she currently works with the San Francisco Symphony as the curator for its annual Día de los Muertos celebration; and with the Community Music Center directing four older adult choirs in the Mission District, teaching flute, voice, piano, sight-reading, Latin Vocal Workshop, summer camp, coordinating the Mission District Young Musicians Program and directing and co- producing the annual Mexican musical “La Posarela”. Also speaks Spanish.

Marcus ShelbyMARCUS SHELBY (2013), Teen Jazz Orchestra. Marcus Anthony Shelby is an accomplished teacher, composer, arranger, and bassist. From 1990-1996, Shelby was bandleader of Columbia Records and GRP Impulse! Recording Artists Black/Note and is currently the Artistic Director and leader of The Marcus Shelby Orchestra, The Marcus Shelby Hot 7, and the The Marcus Shelby Trio. Shelby was awarded a 2009 Black Metropolis Research Consortium Fellowship in Chicago for summer 2009 to conduct research for his commission to compose “Soul of the Movement.” Shelby was also a 2006 Fellow in the Resident Dialogues Program of the Committee for Black Performing Arts at Stanford University to conduct research for his commission to compose “Harriet Tubman.” Shelby has had the honor of arranging for and conducting the Count Basie Orchestra featuring Ledisi, performing and recording with Tom Waits, and receiving the City Flight Magazine 2005 award as one of the “Top Ten Most Influential African Americans in the Bay Area.” As the 1991 winner of the Charles Mingus Scholarship, Shelby’s studies include work under the tutelage of composer James Newton and legendary bassist Charlie Haden. Shelby is also very active in music education and currently teaches at Rooftop Alternative School in San Francisco, and the Stanford Jazz Workshop at Stanford University.  In March 2013, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee appointed Shelby to the San Francisco Arts Commission.

EUGENIO SOLINAS (2015) cello, Young Musicians Program Instructor. Eugenio Solinas began his study of music at the A. Vivaldi Conservatory of Music in Alessandria, Italy. After his graduation (2009), he studied with the renowned concert cellist Umberto Clerici. In 2013, he moved to the United States to attend a master’s program at the Mannes School of Music at The New School under the guidance of Ms. Barbara Stein Mallow. In New York, he performed in some of the most esteemed concert halls in the city, such as Symphony Space, Alice Tully Hall, and Carnegie Hall. He also has a particular focus of study on Baroque music. He studied first at the St. Rocco Ancient Sacred Music Academy in Italy, and subsequently was involved in the Baroque Music Ensemble coordinated by Nancy Wilson at Mannes College and more recently the Baroque Ensemble at the SF Conservatory of Music. Currently, he is attending a Ph.D. program at the SF Conservatory of Music, studying cello with Jennifer Culp, and Baroque cello with Elizabeth Reed.

LORETTA TAYLOR (1986), violin, Chamber Music Ensembles, String Orchestra Workshop. BA, Music, SFSU. Participant at the Music Academy of the West and the Blossom Festival School. Performed with orchestras in San Juan, Puerto Rico and Perth, Australia. SF Sinfonietta Concertmaster and principal second violin of the Santa Cruz Symphony. Artist-in-residence, SF School of the Arts. Also speaks Spanish.

ERIK IAN WALKER (1998), composition, ear training, piano. BM, Composition, SF Conservatory of Music. Erik has been coaching students in the beginnings and finer points of improvisation for 25 years. Learning riffs, building solos, playing through changes, using your intuition. Erik performs with Music for Squares and runs his studio, WackoWorld Music. For sample piano lessons and more information, visit

BETH WILMURT (2000), Children’s Chorus Director, Teen Singers Director. BA, Musical Theater, SFSU. Also trained with the Saratoga International Theatre Institute. Has taught singing, dancing and acting for numerous youth arts programs. A working actress and singer who has been nominated for three Bay Area Theater Critics Circle Awards. Founding member and co-producer of Art Street Theatre.

SHIRLEY WONG-FRENTZEL (1972), Chinese instruments, harpsichord, recorder, Collegium Musicum, Eastern Music. BA with honors, Composition, Mills College, studied with Darius Milhaud, Leon Kirchner and Morton Subotnick; MM with highest honors, Harpsichord, New England Conservatory. Member, Pi Kappa Lambda honor society. Formed Darius Milhaud Ensemble locally with Philharmonia Baroque soloists. Former faculty, Mills College, UCSD, and SFSU. Co-manager of Flowing Stream Ensemble and member of Phoenix Spring Ensemble. Also speaks Cantonese.