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1146 Greentree Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15220
The Pittsburgh Music Academy

Why choose PMA?

The cornerstone of our school is the conviction that every child can,with careful teaching and parental support, become a successful musician able to make music a part of his or her life. We believe music study will enrich their lives through appreciation of beauty, development of disciplined work habits, and increased self-esteem.

Our parents say it best
Administration and Faculty

Beth Allison, Financial Administrator

Jeremy Colbert, Guitar Department Chair

Jennifer Madge, Academy Director

Amaury Morales, Piano Department Chair

Carrie Walsh Erdely, CEO, String Department Chair, Director of Marketing

Tara Yaney, Flute Department Chair

 

Faculty

Jeremy Colbert, guitar - BM Music Education, Shenandoah Conservatory. Studied with (guitar) Rick Whitehead and Chadwick Becks; (voice) Michael Forest, Lisa Reagan, and Robert Shafer who is the Grammy Award winning director of the Washington Chorus and founder of the City Choir of Washington. Suzuki training with Andrea Cannon. Member of PMA faculty since 2009. 

Jeremy Colbert received his bachelor degree in Music Education from Shenandoah Conservatory along with the Student Teacher of the Year Award in 2009. He has since been a faculty member of the Pittsburgh Music Academy where he teaches guitar and voice--leading the guitar department 2013-present. In addition, Jeremy has directed the Summer Dreamers ‘Music Alive!’ program through Pittsburgh Public Schools and has co-founded the Summer Rock Academy. Jeremy performs regularly with folk-rock group Nameless in August, and has performed in the past with the groups Grey’s Fool, Boon, & The Voodoo Babies. During his performing experience he has shared the stage with The Doobie Brothers, Jerry Douglas, Meatloaf, Fuel, Everclear, Howie Day and the same venues as Dave Matthews Band, Dead & Co, Heart, Def Leppard, John Mayer, Train, and The Pittsburgh Steelers. Jeremy also enjoys musically accompanying yoga classes in the region. 

Gina Glenn, piano – BS Respiratory Therapy, Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Gina worked in several hospitals in the Pittsburgh area for over 22 years before beginning her career as a piano teacher. She started at the Pittsburgh Music Academy as a parent in 1992 with her son, and her daughter began taking lessons shortly after in 2000. After spending many years at PMA as a parent, she began teaching Music Together® and piano as a member of the PMA faculty. In 2010, an orthopedic injury prevented her from continuing to teach Music Together® and working in healthcare, and has been a piano teacher ever since. She describes her job as one that people only dream about, teaching children how to make music with joy in their hearts. Gina completed her Suzuki training with Katherine Monsour Barley, and has been a member of the PMA faculty since 2001.

Beth Goldstein-McKee, cello, brings her extensive performing and teaching experience to her work with students and teachers at institutes and workshops across the United States and in her studio. A registered Suzuki Association of the Americas Cello Teacher Trainer, she has had the honor of teaching students from around the world at the 16th World Convention in Matsumoto, Japan and training teachers from South and Central America at the 24th International Suzuki Festival in Lima, Peru. She has served on the Board of Directors of the SAA, as Cello Coordinator for the 2016 SAA Conference, and she has been a presenter at the American String Teachers Association and the SAA conferences. Beth has recently moved to Western PA where she is starting a new generation of students.

For many years, Beth maintained a multi-level and age studio in Ashland, OR, was the cello sectional and chamber music coach for the Youth Symphony of Southern Oregon, and played with the Rogue Valley Symphony, Rogue Opera, and in chamber orchestras. Previous to moving to Ashland, OR, Beth was on the faculty of Holy Names College’s Suzuki Program and the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts, and maintained a private studio in Berkeley, California. She was the cellist in several new music ensembles in Boston, NYC, and London, England, and she received the National Endowment for the Humanities Youth Grant to bring contemporary classical music to new audiences. Beth, a native of NYC, graduated from Brandeis University and trained as a teacher of the Suzuki Method at the School for Strings, NYC.

Margaret Anna Hamstead, piano - BA Music Eduction, Shepherd College; MA Musicology, Boston University; MS Reading/Language Arts, Syracuse University; Ed.D. Nova Southeastern University. Studied piano with Guy Frank at Shepherd, Maria Clodes at Boston University, piano and chamber music with Robert Merfeld and the Apple Hill Chamber Players; Suzuki training with Katherine Monsour Barley. 

Margaret is an accomplished pianist; still, she continues to study piano and piano teaching, discovering new strategies and techniques for both! She loves working with and learning from students, and enjoys playing with local chamber music groups.

Becky Keeley, cello, is a native Pittsburgher and PMA alumna! After receiving her BA in Cello Performance from University of Maryland she decided that her true passion was in teaching. She received her Suzuki training with Alice Vierra at the Greater Washington Suzuki Institute and opened her own Suzuki cello and piano studio in 2011. In addition, she has training in both Music Mind Games and Music Together and was the Music Director at Reston Montessori School where she started a Suzuki cello program for the Elementary students. Becky has had the opportunity to play with various groups in and around Washington DC. She has performed at The Kennedy Center, The Mansion on O Street, and The Atlas Theater as principal cellist of the Capital City Symphony. 

Josie Kost, flute - BM Performance, Wheaton College; MM Performance, Duquesne University; Artist Diploma, Duquesne University. Studied with Anita Rieder, Damian Bursill-Hall; summer study with Jill Felber. Suzuki training with David Gerry and Kelly Williamson. Member of PMA faculty since 2010.

Josie is the principal flute with the Greenville Symphony. She has also performed with Opera Theater of Pittsburgh, Westmoreland Symphony, Johnstown Symphony, and Altoona Symphony. She plays piano for church services at Port Vue United Methodist Church and also work as an adjunct professor at Duquesne University, conducting the flute ensembles. Teaching children is one of the most rewarding aspects of her week. She strives to engage each child in a way that is educational, fun and age appropriate. As a result, each child gains confidence that carries over from the instrument to other areas of daily life.

Jack Kurutz, piano – A native of New York, Jack Kurutz is an avid recitalist, chamber musician, and advocate of contemporary classical music. He is a founding member of the Living Room Chamber Music Project, which aims to make live music accessible and enjoyable by bringing performances from the concert stage into the home.   

Mr. Kurutz received his undergraduate degree from the University of Miami, studying with Ivan Davis, and earned his Master of Music from New England Conservatory in Gabriel Chodos’ studio. In 2005, Kurutz completed an Artist Diploma from Carnegie Mellon University, and currently coaches with Ralph Zitterbart.

In September 2007, Mr. Kurutz won First Prize, Artist Division, in the Liszt-Garrison International Piano Competition sponsored by the Baltimore-Washington Chapter of the American Liszt Society. Additionally, he was awarded a prize for the best interpretation of a Franz Liszt composition. He was a finalist in the 2009 Simone Belsky Competition and the 2010 Steinway Society of Massachusetts Competition.  In addition to serving on the faculty at the Pittsburgh Music Academy, he currently teaches a private studio, holds a teaching position at the Carnegie Mellon University Preparatory School, and teaches at the Greater Pittsburgh Suzuki Institute. Jack completed his Suzuki training with Katherine Monsour Barley, and has been a member of the PMA faculty since 2007.

Jennifer Madge, violin – MM Violin Performance, Duquesne University; BM Violin Performance, Summa Cum Laude, Duquesne University; Undergraduate studies in violin performance and music education, Wichita State University. Studied with Charles Stegeman (Pittsburgh Oper and Ballet, and Pacific Symphony Concertmaster), Huei Sheng Kao (Pittsburgh Symphony Assistant Concertmaster), Andre Grabiec (Rochester Philharmonic Concertmaster), Masao Kawasaki, Won Bin Yim. Suzuki Training with Vera McCoy-Sulentic, Linda Flore, Lorraine Fink, Edward Kreitman, Doris Preucil, Thomas Wermuth, Linda Case, Stevie Sandven, Katherine Monsour Barley. Member of PMA faculty since it’s founding in 1996.

Jennifer has taught violin in many different capacities – as a teacher, a professor, and an adjuct professor – at the Greater Pittsburgh Suzuki Institute, Carnegie Mellon Summer String Workshop, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Seton Suzuki School, Musik Innovations, Duquesne University Studio Teaching, and Three Rivers Young People’s Orchestra. She currently plays with the Pittsburgh Opera Orchestra and the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre Orchestra, and is a member of the Suzuki Association, Chamber Music America, and American String Teachers Association. 

Amaury Morales, piano - Regarded as “an authority in the classical music world (Ciudad Corazón)” and “a vigorous, energetic performer (Toplicke Vesti)” pianist Amaury Morales has performed widely in major venues of Latin America, the United States, Europe and Asia; Amaury has been praised as “a mixture of maturity and youth that reveals an underlying serenity (La Información).” For his methodical choice of repertoire, his performances of Latin-American music have earned him a reputation of an advocate of the region’s classical music: “It was really refreshing to hear a completely different, unconventional Latin rhythm performed by the pianist from this territory who has been awarded many times (Toplicke Vesti, Serbia).” The recipient of several awards, Amaury was awarded for three consecutive years with the Dr. Mark H Cooley scholarship award for outstanding achievement, and has received recognition in competitions such as 3rd place in the Latin American piano festival (2001), 2nd Place in the Manuel Rueda piano competition (2003), 2nd place in the American Protegé (2011) international competition and 1st place in the Silverman chamber music competition (2009). His orchestra appearances include the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Carnegie Mellon University baroque ensemble, and the Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic.

Born in the Dominican Republic, Amaury started his piano studies at the Institute of Culture and Arts in the city of Santiago. He studied piano with Dr. Hilda Melis, and music theory with Mercedes Machín. He received Bachelor’s degree at the Boston Conservatory as a student of Max Levinson, and earned his Master’s Degree at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, where he studied with Dr. Sergey Schepkin. Amaury furthered his artistic education with legendary German pianist Klaus Schilde as an active participant of pianosummer-Vranje festival in Serbia. A devoted educator, Amaury has given masterclasses in Latin America, Istanbul, Serbia, Singapore, and the United States. Along as serving as the Chair of the Piano Department at the Pittsburgh Music Academy, Amaury also belongs to the piano faculty of Carnegie Mellon University’s preparatory division. Amaury completed his Suzuki training with Katherine Monsour Barley. For more information, visit www.amaurymorales.com.

Elizabeth Mortimer, piano

Nicole L. Myers, cello, is a Pittsburgh-based cellist and music educator. Well-versed in both classical and alternative styles, Ms. Myers is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Master of Music in Cello Performance. Ms. Myers teaches both traditional and Suzuki lessons for students of all ages, and is a faculty member at the Pittsburgh Music Academy, Carnegie Mellon's Music Extension Division, and Lydia's Music Center. She is a founding member of Cello Fury, a progressive rock/classical fusion ensemble, and is the director of the Pittsburgh Cello Fest.  Ms. Myers received Suzuki training from Gilda Barston, Carol Tarr, Annette Costanzi, and Beth Goldstein-McKee. 

Margaux Matz Pisula, violin & viola, began her musical profession as a nine-year-old Suzuki violin student and holds degrees in violin and viola performance from Duquesne University. She is a member of the Youngstown and Huntington Symphonies, and has also performed with several other orchestras, ensembles, and festivals within the US and Italy. Margaux has taught through the Pittsburgh Music Academy since 2007 and has also held teaching positions through Hope Academy of Music and the Arts, Lyons Guitar & String, the Greater Pittsburgh Suzuki Institute, and Greenville I.S.D.’s Suzuki in the Schools program in Greenville, TX. Notable Suzuki pedagogues that Mrs. Pisula has studied with include Sonja Zeithamel, Marilyn O’Boyle, Roger Stieg, Ronda Cole, David Strom, William Preucil, Sr. and Dr. Julia Hardie. Margaux is happily married to her sweet husband Aaron Pisula, a paralegal and trombonist. They reside in Pittsburgh’s Mt. Washington neighborhood with their green eclectus parrot, Jasper.

Dawn Posey, violin, is an in demand chamber musician, teacher, and performer both in Pittsburgh and beyond. She has performed with the Boston Conservatory Honors Quartet, Festival A Tempo in Caracas, Venezuela, the Chamber Music Festival of Amman, Jordan, Blossom Music Festival, and Tanglewood Music Center. Additionally, she has appeared as a soloist with orchestras in Missouri, Indiana, and England. Dawn also makes regular appearances with the new music ensemble, Alia Musica.

She is a founding member of Kassia Ensemble, a new chamber music ensemble in Pittsburgh made up entirely of female performers. Kassia Ensemble seeks to empower women through quality performance, collaboration, and outreach. Dawn is also a devotee of baroque performance practice, and a frequent guest artist with Chatham Baroque. Dawn was a member of the violin faculty at the Sherwood Conservatory, the Merit School of Music, and the University of Evansville, Indiana, and she continues to teach at the Pittsburgh Music Academy and as adjunct professor of violin at St. Vincent College in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. In Evansville, Dawn was the second violinist with the Eykamp String Quartet and Associate Concertmaster with the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra. She has also served as assistant concertmaster with both the Youngstown Symphony and the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra. Dawn is currently associate principal second violin with the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra and a member of the Pittsburgh Opera Orchestra. Dawn completed her Suzuki training with Nancy Jackson, Edward Kreitman, Moshe Neumann, and Anna Montzka-Smelser, and has been on the faculty of PMA since 2009.

Jane Schwarz, piano - Studied music at the University of Rochester; BA Psychology and Masters in Social Work from University of Pittsburgh. Studied with Patricia Pavlack, Maria Caruso, and Mr. Lenti. Suzuki trained with Katherine Monsour Barley. Member of PMA faculty since 2002.

Jane often plays in local churches and enjoys participating in choir and instrumental ensembles. She is also a mental health therapist with Chartiers MH/MR Center. She has experience teaching piano to children with disabilities. She is a member of Suzuki Association of the Americas.

Gil Teixeira, guitar - Gil Teixeira (www.gilteixeira.com) is a prolific artist and educator that sees Sound as the unifying core of his many practices. A native of Portugal, Gil grew up studying classical guitar with some of the great masters of the instrument. He holds a Bachelor degree in Guitar Performance. Alongside his classical studies, Gil started the post-rock band La La La Ressonance (www.lalalaressonance.com) , a group that pushed the artistic boundaries of what a band is and does, mostly due to their bold cross-artistic experiments.  In 2012, Gil moved to London to pursue a Masters in Music at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, where he developed a keen interest in the exploration of technology in collaborative music making contexts and started working on CEEMI (www.playceemi.com). His artistic practice also shifted from playing music into a more experimental and abstract exploration of Sound more in tune with Soundart and Multimedia Installation.  Gil has taught guitar, led workshops, and performed all over Europe and the U.S. He moved to Pittsburgh PA in January of 2015. He got his Suzuki guitar training with William Kossler at the Greater Pittsburgh Suzuki Institute.

Carrie Walsh Erdely, violin, has been teaching the violin and viola for over 15 years. She has her Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Violin Performance from Duquesne University, and also attended Carnegie Mellon University. Carrie teaches students of all ages and has had great success in placing many students in youth orchestras throughout the Pittsburgh area. Mrs. Erdely is the Head of the String Department as well as the Director of Marketing at the Pittsburgh Music Academy. Since 2010, she has proudly been a part owner of PMA as well. From 2005-2013, Carrie was a violin master class teacher and group teacher at The Greater Pittsburgh Suzuki Institute. In 2014, she was named the Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Intensive Camp, sponsored by the Pittsburgh Music Academy. Along with her studio, Carrie is also a performing violinist as well. She has played with, and continues to play with, many local orchestras in the Pittsburgh area such as the Wheeling Symphony, Chamber Orchestra of Pittsburgh, Butler County Symphony, Washington Symphony, and the Youngstown Symphony. She performs regularly at her church giving recitals as well as weddings throughout the area. Carrie completed her Suzuki training with Carrie Reuning Hummel, Ed Kreitman, Roger Stieg, and Barbara Barber, and has been a member of the PMA faculty since 2002.

Doris Weir, piano -- Bachelor or Music, Duquesne University.  Piano study with Beverly Nero.  Organ study with Brett Edler and Ann Labounsky Steele.  Suzuki training with Kiki Barley.  PMA faculty member since 2000.

In addition to teacheing piano, Ms. Weir served as Director of Music Ministry, Organist and Choir Director at Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish.  Currently, she is playing for various churches for weddings, funerals and other masses and services. From Ms. Weir, "Being with and teaching children is an absolute joy.  As a mother of five, I understand the uniqueness of each child and feel my parenting enhances my ability to teach."

Lauretta Werner, violin – M.M. Suzuki Pedagogy, Ithaca College; B.M., Violin Performance, Ohio University. Violin study with Stephen Miahky, Solomiya Ivakhiv, and Susan Waterbury. Suzuki Method Long-term Training with Carrie Reuning-Hummel. Suzuki Method Short-term training with James Hutchins, Kimberly Meier-Sims, Tom Wermuth, and Ed Kreitman. Member of PMA faculty since 2016.

Lauretta began her studies in violin at age 7 at the Pittsburgh Music Academy in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Lauretta has performed at the Brevard Music Festival, the Montecito International Music Festival, the Vianden International Music Festival in Luxembourg, the Wintergreen String Chamber Music Academy, Texas Christian University's Intensive String Quartet Workshop, and The Artwork String Festival alongside friend and violinist, Amelia Thornton, in Montana's Flathead Valley area. In addition to performing, Lauretta is interested in teaching in areas without access to musical instruction and resources. In June 2016, Lauretta taught beginner Suzuki violin in Puerta Plata, Dominican Republic to 34 children between the ages of 4-19 at La Sociedad Cultural Renovación. In addition to teaching at PMA, Lauretta is currently pursuing her D.M.A. in Violin Performance at West Virginia University where she studies with Dr. Mikylah McTeer and works as a graduate assistant.

Tara Yaney, flute – BM Flute Performance, Peabody Conservatory of Music; BS Physics, University of Pennsylvania. Studied with Robert Willoughby. Suzuki training with David Gerry.

Tara is the principal flute player of the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra and the third flute and piccolo player of the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra. She has also performed with the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra, the Canton Symphony Orchestra, the Altoona Symphony Orchestra, Quantum Theatre, the Bach Choir of Pittsburgh, the International Chamber Ensemble in Rome, Italy, the Ohio Light Opera Orchestra, and numerous pit orchestras in the Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Baltimore, and Pittsburgh areas. She performs regularly as a soloist, in Duo Cieli with guitarist John Marcinizyn, and with Cincopation, a Pittsburgh-based woodwind quintet. 

Upcoming Events
Friday, September 1 through Sunday, May 22 - Check out our Google Calendar to see what is happening at the Pittsburgh Music Academy!

Introduction to Cello for the Very Young