Director, Latino Arts Strings Program & Mariachi Juvenil; Violin/Viola Instructor
Dinorah Márquez was born in Mexico City. At the age of 10, she immigrated with her family to El Paso, Texas, where she began her musical studies with violinists James Angerstein and Abraham Chavez. Ms. Marquez did her undergraduate studies in American Studies, at Northwestern University, and a minor in International Studies at the University of Florence, Italy. She later worked as Assistant Press Secretary for Mayor Harold Washington in the City of Chicago. After several years, she returned to her musical activities both in the U.S. and Mexico, where she was a guest performer with the Filarmónica del Bajío in Guanajuato, the Orquesta de Mexico in Mexico City, and the Camerata del Estado de Veracruz.
Ms. Marquez founded an ethnomusicology project, which continues to this day. It focuses on the preservation of indigenous violin traditions in Xico, Veracruz, Mexico. She received a Master’s Degrees in Viola performance and String Pedagogy from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She also received a Certificate in Chamber Music from the Leonard Sorkin International Institute of Chamber Music where she studied with the members of the Fine Arts Quartet.
Upon graduation, Ms. Marquez established the national award winning Latino Arts Strings Program. The LASP has given her the opportunity to provide immigrant Latino children with the type of musical training she received as an immigrant child. In 2007, she received the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Education Forum Award. In 2008, the Latino Arts Strings Program received the national Coming Up Taller Award, given by a Presidential Committee and the National Endowment for the Arts and the Humanities. In 2009, she was named Milwaukee Artist of the Year. In 2010, she was invited back to the White House with several of her students as part of First Lady Michelle Obama’s efforts to promote the arts.
In 2012, the Civic Music Association and the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra named Ms. Marquez “Music Teacher of the Year”; and the Wilson Center granted the LASP the Eddy Award, for enhancing the level of arts education in the Milwaukee area. In 2013, the program won the National “Afterschool Innovators” award and Milwaukee Magazine named her one of Milwaukee’s 20 most creative people. In 2013 and 2014, the program was named one of the Top 7 Music Communities in the country, and won a visit from the John Lennon Bus and the NAMM Music Education National Conference.
Jessicca Williams received a Bachelor of Music with Honors from Evangel University in Missouri and a Master’s of Music in String Pedagogy from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She is a former student of Bernard Zinck, Myron Kartman and Larry Dissmore and studied String Pedagogy with Darcy Drexler. Ms. Williams served on the violin faculty and Board of Directors at The String Academy of Wisconsin at UW-Milwaukee from 2004-2012. From 2012-2013, she instructed students in violin at the Hmong American Peace Academy, a Milwaukee charter school, working with the Hmong community. In addition to teaching, Ms. Williams is also an active performer, performing with the Green Bay Symphony. She has also had performance and teaching opportunities, which include the Tuscia Opera Festival in Viterbo, Italy and Friends of Music Festival in Incheon, South Korea. In her free time, Ms. Williams enjoys cycling, running, swimming, cooking and spending time with family and friends.
Jonathan Brodie studied modern violin with Abraham Chavez at the University of Colorado (M.M. 1977) and viola with Robert Emile at the University of Nebraska (M.M 1982.) Both degrees were in Musicology. He currently teaches stringed instruments at the Whitefish Bay Public School, where he has taught for the past 25 years. He enthusiastically works to incorporate a wide variety of musical genres into his daily teaching; from consort music of the 15th and 16th Century to Eastern European folk music of more recent times. As a modern violist, he has played in the Lincoln Symphony, the Omaha Symphony, and the Nebraska Chamber Orchestra. As a Baroque violist, he has been a member of several Midwest early music ensembles; St. Louis Baroque, and Shakespeare's Band; in Milwaukee with The Playford Trio, and most recently, Ensemble Musical Offering and a Milwaukee Symphony sponsored ACE ensemble The King’s Musique. He also plays folk-klezmer violin with The Chai Guys and finds both solace and recreation in playing viola da gamba in Milwaukee area early-music consorts. In 2009, he was named "Music Teacher of the Year" by the Civic Music Association of Milwaukee.
Cello & Piano Instructor
Trischa Loebl has a Bachelor of Music degree in cello performance and piano performance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Ms. Loebl holds a Master of Music degree from Northwestern University. Her principal cello teachers are Parry Karp, Alan Harris and Uri Vardi. Ms. Loebl has been with the LASP as cello instructor since 2006. Previously, Loebl taught at the String Academy of Wisconsin at UW-Milwaukee from 1990 until 2006. Her students have won many competitions and have played as concerto soloists and recital soloists, including the Racine symphony solo competition and the Wisconsin Cello Society Solo Competition. An active performer, Ms. Loebl plays in the Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra, Bel Canto Chamber Orchestra and sits as principal cello of the Waukesha Symphony. In 2014, Ms. Loebl was awarded the “Excellence in Youth Music Education” award by the Civic Music Association.
Classical Guitar Instructor
Sara D’Ippolito began her studies with Marco Rossetti in her native country, Italy. Ms. D’Ippolito then continued with Arturo Tallini and graduated in Classical Guitar Performance and Education from the Santa Cecilia Conservatory of Music in Rome, Italy. Some of the Master classes Sara has completed are: Baroque and Renaissance Music taught by Rolf Lislevand; Contemporary Music and Didactic Approaches to Improvisation with Nuccio D’Angelo; Improvisational Composition with renowned jazz pianist Enrico Pieranunzi; and Dodecaphonic Music with Roman Vlad. Ms. D’Ippolito has had considerable experience teaching in both classroom and private individual settings with groups of all ages. In Rome, Ms. D’Ippolito taught at the Luigi Pirandello Elementary School. Ms. D’Ippolito is also devoted to musical theater and vocal performance. In 2010, she was in an Italian national production of Shakespeare’s “Two Gentlemen of Verona” with music directed by Oscar winner Nicola Piovani at the Globe Theater in Rome. In the same year Ms. D’Ippolito moved to the Milwaukee area. In the summer of 2012, she joined the Latino Arts Strings Program.
Folk Guitars, Vihuela, & Guitarron
Alberto Cardenas was born in Zamora, Michoacán, Mexico. He comes from a family of musicians. His grandfather was a band leader and his mother and aunts had a group known as “Las Hermanitas.” He began his guitar studies at the age of 12 and studied with Cadena y Duarte and with Roberto Martinez. He began a Mexican musical ensemble known as a “Rondalla” in 1976, and in 1979 he entered the Music Conservatory Las Rosas in Morelia, Michoacán. After a few years he began to work with the Mexican Trio genre and in 1989 he moved to Los Angeles where he studied flamenco guitar with Cornelio Ramos, and participated in various musical groups in East L.A. In 1992, he moved to Milwaukee and began working with the Mariachi genre. Since 1994, he has directed various ensembles: Raíces Mexicanas, Mi Tierra, Trío México and Trío Alma Latina. Currently he directs and performs with Voces y Cuerdas de Mexico, a quartet that includes violin, vihuela, guitar and guitarron.
John Babbitt has been a faculty member of the LASP for the last five years and the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music since 1994, an adjunct in the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Music Department. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee with a Master’s degree in performance on double bass. He has worked and taught extensively throughout the Midwest as a professional bassist and educator in both jazz and classical formats. Mr. Babbitt served as Wisconsin Conservatory of Music faculty chair of the String Department from 1996 to 1999, and has also served as adjunct faculty at UW-Milwaukee, UW-Stevens Point, Concordia University, Carroll College, Alverno College Community Arts Department, the String Academy at UW-Milwaukee and the Oshkosh Summer String Camp. Mr. Babbitt also works with the Progressions Program of the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra, a program designed to train young bassist of diverse backgrounds. Mr. Babbitt currently works with our high school students.
Kate Krueger has a Bachelor of Music degree in double bass performance from Butler University where she studied with David Murray. She also has a master’s degree in music performance from the University of Michigan where she studied with Diana Gannett and Stephen Molina. Ms. Krueger has also spent several summers studying with world-renowned double bass virtuoso Gary Karr in Victoria, BC as well as a summer at the Aspen Music Festival and School where she studied with Bruce Bransby. She has taught young bassists for several years on the faculty at the Golden Gate Bass Camp in California. She also maintains a private double bass studio and is the professor of double bass at Beloit College. Ms. Krueger is an active musician, regularly playing with orchestras and ensembles throughout Wisconsin including the Green Bay Symphony, Festival City Symphony and the Kenosha Symphony. She currently works with our grade school and middle school students.
Naeim Rahmani was born in Iran and moved to the United States in 2003. He began his classical guitar studies in Seattle, WA and graduated from the University of Washington with Bachelor’s of Music in guitar performance where he studied with Michael Partington. Naeim finished his master’s degree at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee where he studied under renowned guitarist Rene Izquierdo.
In the summer of 2014, Naeim performed a series of concerts in the north of Spain along the route of the Camino Santiago. He has performed in master classes for Eduardo Fernandez, David Russell, Göran Söllscher, and Jorge Caballero, among others. He has taught guitar classes at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and was an adjunct guitar instructor at the Maranatha University in Watertown, Wisconsin. Most recently Naeim was a third prizewinner in several competitions, including the 2015 Northwest Guitar Festival and Competition, the 2015 San Francisco Bay Guitar Competition and the 2015 University of Louisville Guitar Festival and Competition. He currently teaches and performs in the Milwaukee area.