Performing Arts Staff
Wendy Avon has been teaching the performing arts to children for more than 10 years. She is a graduate of Columbia College, where she studied theater and dance. Wendy has acted in many recent theatrical productions in Chicago. She has also performed in professional films and commercials, and brings enthusiasm and a variety of creative skills to her teaching.
Christine Kostuchowski received her bachelor’s degree in Speech and Performing Arts from Northeastern Illinois University. As an accomplished actress she has appeared in many local community theater productions. She has an extensive background in technical theater as a director, costumer, stage manager, and make-up consultant. She interned with the Illinois Theatre Association and was the costumer for the opening ceremonies of the World Cup Soccer games.
Kirsten Markham has extensive background in dance, singing and acting. She is a professional choreographer and dance instructor. She has studied with Gus Giordano and Second City, Chicago, and appeared in local theatrical productions. She received a degree in Early Childhood Education and taught kindergarten before returning to adult and children’s theater.
Francesca Sherrill is a graduate of Milliken University where she received degrees in voice and piano. An accomplished dancer as well, she has performed on cruise ships, theme parks and several other professional venues including Light Opera Works in Evanston.
Canzonetta Youth String Chamber Orchestra Staff
Hilel Kagan, conductor and artistic director of Canzonetta. Founder, conductor, and artistic director of Concertante di Chicago, a chamber orchestra that has gained critical acclaim. He has conducted orchestras in Hungary, Norway and France, and has led violin and chamber music master classes in Roubaix Conservatory, France. He was Principal 2nd violin, 30 years, Lyric Opera Orchestra of Chicago, former professor of violin and chamber music, De Paul University and Music Institute of Chicago.
Helia Schramm, co-artistic director of Canzonetta, she appeared twice as soloist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Youth Series. Concertmistress of Civic Orchestra; 1st violinist of Arcturus String Quartet, performing concerts in Chicago and the Midwest. Principal 2nd violin of Philharmonic Orchestra, Aspen Music Festival. On the faculty of the Suzuki Institute, Stevens Point, WI, and Music Institute of Chicago. Founder, Lincolnwood School of Music. Visiting violin instructor, Roubaix Conservatory, Roubaix, France.