VCC2020 Artistic Director
'That Cello Piece' Ep.2
As a contemporary international artist, Diana Wuli has performed in concerts throughout the USA, UK, Europe, Australia, and Asia. She has also performed with Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, New Zealand Opera and Ballet Orchestra, and International Chamber Orchestra of Puerto Rico. Diana has been the recipient of numerous prestigious prizes and awards, including the Donovan Johnson Travelling Scholarship (AUS), Thornton Foundation Award (UK), Eva Heinitz Cello Award (USA), and Janos Starker Scholar (USA).
A passionate educator, Diana is currently on faculty at Vincennes University (USA) as Adjunct Professor in Applied Strings and Director of VU String Ensemble. She gives workshops and masterclasses as guest lecturer at universities, including Miami University, Fresno State University, Indiana University, University of South Dakota, and Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico. Her on going dedication to research in string pedagogy has seen her create and develop new and innovative cello and string teaching methods.
As an avid believer in the purpose and power of music, Diana is actively involved in projects with the mission of exchanging, connecting, and collaborating in music and music education, bringing together communities around the globe.
VCC2020 Masterclass Series
Cara Elise Colón
Cellist, Cara Elise Colón enjoys a career as a chamber musician, pedagogue and arts administrator. Most recently she was invited to perform with the Mammoth Lakes Music Festival, L’Ermitage Foundation Series of Los Angeles, Lancaster International Piano Festival, Killington Music Festival, UCLA Bruman Concert Series, Orquesta Sinfónica de Guayaquil Ensamble de Violoncello, PSPA International Chamber Ensemble on tour in Malaysia, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Chamber Series, Ware Center Concert Series in Pennsylvania, Fundación Musical Chamber Series in Puerto Rico and served as principal cellist of the Ashlawn-Highland Opera Company. She has studied with many leading musicians including Janos Starker, Sidney Harth and Anne Martindale-Williams and performed in master classes for Mstislav Rostropovich and the Diaz Trio.
As a pedagogue, Cara has held positions on the faculty of the Indiana University String Academy and the Indianapolis Academy of Music. She has been invited as a guest clinician for the Fairbanks Cello Festival, London Suzuki Group, Killington Music Festival, Cello|Fresno Festival, ‘Low Strings Attached Festival’ and for pedagogy courses at Indiana University.
As an arts administrator, Cara serves as Vice President of the American Cello Institute whose project, the International Chamber Orchestra of Puerto Rico, received two consecutive awards from the National Endowment for the Arts for promoting arts access in underserved communities on the island.
'Bach & Baroque'
Kevin Flynn is pursuing his Doctor of Music in Cello Performance at Indiana University as the Eva Heinitz Memorial Scholar and as assistant to his teacher, Emilio Colón. He received a Master of Music in Cello Performance at Indiana University, and a Bachelor of Arts with a double major in Cello Performance, studying under Pablo Mahave-Veglia, and in Philosophy from Grand Valley State University.
He has played in New Music Detroit’s Strange Beautiful Music VII, VIII, and IX, and in venues from Constellation Chicago to Yellowstone National Park. He has been heard on American Public Media’s Performance Today and hisfirst commercial recording as a member of the Grand Valley State University New Music Ensemble, a CD of newly-commissioned works celebrating the centennial of the National Parks Service, will be released in April 2020 through Innova Recordings.
VCC2020 Masterclass Series
Leo Kim began musical studies in 1981 with Maxine Madden as a violinist. Coming to his senses realizing he had no talent for the instrument and that he would be competing with his older, smarter sister, he began cello studies under the late Pearl Winter. He participated in the California Music Educators Association and California Orchestra Director’s Association Honor Orchestras as principal cellist. After service in the US military, he served as principal cellist in both the Fresno City College String Ensemble and the Fresno City College Symphony Orchestra.
For one exceedingly hectic and fortunately brief semester, Mr. Kim was principal cellist in both of the Fresno City College Ensembles, Musica Pacifica Baroque Orchestra, and the Fresno State Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Kim has performed in master classes taught by Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, Wendy Warner, Emilio Colon and finished his graduate studies with Thomas Loewenheim. He plays an 1846 Thomas Kennedy Cello.
VCC2020 Masterclass Series
Dr. Sonja Kraus, a native of Germany, is an internationally acclaimed cellist, teacher, and music scholar, whose career has taken her through Europe, Asia, Latin America, and the United States.
Currently, Kraus holds the position of Assistant Professor of Cello/Bass at the University of South Dakota and is the cellist in the renowned Rawlins Piano Trio. Prior to joining the faculty at the University of South Dakota, Kraus was the Cello Professor at the Universidad de Especialidades Espíritu Santo as well as the principal cellist of the Orquesta Filarmónica Municipal de Guayaqil in Ecuador.
During the past few years, Kraus participated as teacher and performer in several music festivals around the world including Habana Clásica, the International Chamber Orchestra of Puerto Rico, and the Fresno Summer Orchestra Academy to name a few. She is also a sought-out clinician and instructor of masterclasses throughout the US, Latin America, and Germany.
VCC2020 Masterclass Series
Adam is a well-known musician and educator who is currently Head of Lower Strings at Scotch College teaching performance, orchestral studies and Chamber Music. Previously Adam has taught Cello at Wesley College, Trinity College and Melbourne Grammar.
He completed his bachelor Degree with Nelson Cooke at Melbourne University then further studies in France where he studied with Michel Strauss. He then completed his Graduate Diploma of Education at Monash University.
As a performer Adam has performed and recorded with Michael Bublé, Kylie Minogue, Tina Arena, Delta Goodrem, John Farnham and in numerous stage musicals. He can credit his repertoire with Film music scores, Television, Opera and Ballet.
Adam has furthered his development as a performer and educator, attending the Piatiagorgsky Cello Festival at USC in California and ASTA national Conference in Tampa Bay Florida. He also attended conducting courses hosted by Symphony Australia. Adam has also been a conductor at the State Music Camp of Victoria.
At Scotch College he works alongside four other cello teachers, with a total of approximately 70 students undertaking individual cello lessons. He conducts the Intermediate Orchestra and coaches the Symphony Orchestra, Year 3 String Orchestra, year 5 & 6 String Orchestra and a number of Chamber Music groups.
'That Cello Piece' Ep. 2
Hailed for his "mastery, precision, and passion", pianist Dominic Muzzi began training in the art of classical piano at the age of four, having shown keen aural ability before that age. Shortly thereafter, he began performing locally in his childhood home of central Florida, giving his first public solo recital at the age of eleven. By the age of fourteen, Dominic had earned the American College of Musician’s National Level performance certificate. Presently, Dominic has performed across the United States and Europe, holding over a dozen top prizes in solo piano and concerto competitions.
The previous season has been immensely successful for Dominic, having earned gold medal and first prize in the 68th Wideman International Piano Concerto Competition, as well as first prize at the National finals of the Music Teachers National Association's Young Artist Competition. A rising star on the concert circuit, this year Dominic performed the first two piano concerti of Sergei Rachmaninoff with the Shreveport Symphony and Symphony New Hampshire, where they were received as "brilliant" and "incredible." He also performed recitals across the country on behalf of the Chopin Foundation of the United States, the Wideman foundation, and the Texas Street Arts Series.