2017 Faculty



  Joan Kinsella, Director of Strings

Cellist Joan Kinsella has established a reputation as both a teacher and a performer. Dedicated to a performing career focusing on a variety of genres, Ms. Kinsella appears regularly as a chamber musician and orchestral player in upstate New York. Recent performances include WXXI’s “Live from Hochstein” broadcast, SUNY Brockport Fine Art Series and shows with artists including Idina Menzel, Josh Groban, and Michael Bublé. She has performed with the national tours of numerous Broadway productions, including Newsies, Pippin, Kinky Boots, Lion King, Phantom of the Opera, and West Side Story. She routinely performs with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, the Rochester Oratorio Society Orchestra, Rochester Lyric Opera and Geva Theatre Center. Ms. Kinsella has been a member of the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, the Syracuse Camerata Chamber Orchestra, and ensemble.twenty.21.

Ms. Kinsella received her Bachelor of Music degree in cello performance from the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music and studied at Syracuse University in a graduate string fellowship program. Her teachers include Gabor Rejto, Eleonore Schoenfeld, and David Wells. She grew up outside of Boston and Chicago where she studied with Don Moline of the Chicago Symphony and was a member of the Chicago Civic Orchestra.

Prior to joining the Eastman Community Music School in 2016, Ms. Kinsella was a member of the cello and chamber music faculty at the Hochstein School of Music (Rochester, NY) for twenty-five years and held various administrative positions including Registrar and Dean of Students, Co-Chair of the String Department, and String Chamber Music Coordinator. Her dedication to students was recognized with the presentation of the Faculty Service Award in 2007. She has been active in collaborative efforts with Rochester area arts organizations to coordinate master classes, workshops, performances and community outreach for her students.

Within the Rochester community, Ms. Kinsella has served on the Rochester Philharmonic Board and the Hochstein School of Music Board. She has been an active advocate for improvements in urban education within the Rochester City School District over the past fifteen years as a member of school based planning teams, PTO officer, and classroom volunteer. She is currently serving on the Wilson Magnet High School Student Recruitment Team.


 Lauren Eisenreich, low brass coach

A strong advocate for music education, Lauren was the 2016 recipient for the Jack L. Frank Award for Excellence in Teaching and the 2016 Frank Faculty Development Research Grant at the Eastman Community Music School (ECMS). Lauren is also Assistant Director for the ECMS Trombone Choir and teaches privately. She currently studies trombone with Larry Zalkind and previously studied with Mike Crist, Jeff Bush, John Olsson, and Sam Blakeslee. Lauren has performed with the Diva Jazz Orchestra in Cleveland,  principal trombonist with the Greenville Symphony Orchestra and Youngstown Scoring Stage, and lead trombonist in the First Class Big Band. She is an active freelance musician in the Rochester and Pittsburgh areas.

Lauren has received the highest award given by the Eastman School – the Performer’s Certificate. She serves as the teaching assistant for the Eastman (collegiate) trombone choir and trombone studio, and as an Eastman Institute for Music Leadership Assistant. She earned her bachelor’s degree in jazz performance from Youngstown State University, where she was selected for the Dean’s Award in the College of Creative Arts and Communication as well as the university-wide Senior Academic Award for Outstanding Student Scholarship.



HowardSpindler_051  Howard Spindler, Piano, Dalcroze Eurhythmics

Howard Spindler is a Rochester NY native, and a graduate of the Eastman Preparatory Department. He earned the BA with majors in both Music and German from Oberlin College; he returned to Eastman and completed the MA degree in Musicology. He pursued postgraduate work at the Folkwang Hochschule in Essen, Germany and completed the Artist Diploma in Piano and Accompanying. He returned to Rochester and joined the faculty of the Eastman Preparatory Department, later named Community Education Division, later again renamed Eastman Community Music School. His piano teachers include Paul Badura-Skoda, Cecile Genhart, Maria Luisa Faini; he studied chamber music with John Celentano.

Spindler’s performing career has been diverse; he is very active as a chamber musician and accompanist. His teaching career at Eastman has included piano teaching, chamber music coaching, and classroom teaching, both in the Community School and Collegiate Division. Through Eastman’s Institute for Music Leadership, Howard has directed a certificate program for graduate students interested in honing their studio teaching skills. He was awarded the Jack L. Frank Award for outstanding teaching in Eastman’s Community Music School (1988), and he served as Interim Director of the Community Education Division for 2 1/2 years preceding the appointment of Associate Dean Howard Potter.

Howard has a special interest in the study of rhythmic movement: he was fortunate to study Dalcroze Eurythmics at Oberlin Conservatory with the eminent Professor Inda Howland, who herself had been a disciple of Emile Jaques-Dalcroze in Switzerland. At Eastman, Howard’s piano professor, Cecile Genhart had also been a Dalcroze protege, having assisted the master in teaching improvisation at the Geneva Conservatory. Howard has taken Dalcroze teacher-training courses, and he incorporates Dalcroze practice in his teaching.

As Chairman of the Piano Department, Spindler managed an overhaul of the Piano Syllabus, leading an initiative to include improvisation and ear-playing. In connection with that initiative, he undertook a recording project with Eastman colleagues: the result was Eastman Folk Sing (2006), a CD folk song resource for the school and the entire community.

Spindler enjoys developing new audiences and new venues for concerts. He has performed through Young Audiences, as well as programs of the Rochester City School District. He initiated a weekly noontime concert series, Eastman at Washington Square, which is going strong more than a decade later. He worked with the administration of Elmira College to bring Eastman musicians to Elmira for a new arts and letters series, Encore! Their program is also thriving after many successful seasons. His music appreciation courses and mini-courses through Eastman and through the Monroe County OASIS program have won acclaim.


Gaelen_McCormick_0006  Gaelen McCormick, Camp Director


Ms. McCormick has been a member of the Rochester Philharmonic’s double bass section since 1995.  Before joining the RPO, she held positions with regional orchestras such as the Erie (PA) Philharmonic, the Binghamton Philharmonic and the Albany Symphony.   Ms. McCormick has performed regularly with other major orchestras, including the Buffalo Philharmonic and the Syracuse Symphony.  She holds degrees in performance from the Eastman School and Carnegie Mellon University.

Teaching the double bass to students of all ages has become a significant part of Gaelen’s life. She joined the faculty of Nazareth College in 2010, and has been the bass instructor for the Eastman Community Music School since 2001.  She enjoys working with talented high school aged string players in the summer at Eastman’s Music Horizons program where she teaches chamber music and gives bass lessons.  In 2003, she was invited to teach for the year at Duquesne University’s City Music Center, a program for talented, pre-college students. Gaelen has given masterclasses and recitals at Ithaca College, Williams College, the College of St. Rose, and Roberts Wesleyan College. In 2013, she gave classes on double bass technique at both the International Society of Bassists convention in Rochester and the NYSSMA Winter Conference.  “Mastering the Bow” parts 1&2 (of three books) on double bass bow technique, was published by Carl Fischer in 2013 and 2016, and the third will be published during the 2017 season.
Gaelen has been involved in volunteering and arts advocacy, and is proud to be the representative for the RPO in the International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians.  She is honored to be a member of Phi Kappa Phi and Pi Kappa Lambda, groups recognizing and supporting excellence in the humanities and in music specifically.


 Melissa Kindy, woodwind teacher

Teaching is a primary focus of Melissa’s musical career. She has taught clarinet lessons since 2008 and teaches Secondary Lessons and Doubling for Jazz Majors through TA positions at Eastman. She has also served as a TA for multiple summer programs, including the MPulse Summer Performing Arts Institute at the University of Michigan and the Stetson University Clarinet Clinic. Melissa has extended her teaching abilities through completing minors in Education (Stetson) and Music Theory (Eastman) in order to more effectively help her students.

Melissa works to expand her knowledge and experience by participating in performance programs such as the Marrowstone Music Festival and Buffet Crampon USA Summer Clarinet Academy, taking advantage of unique educational opportunities like studying contemporary music theory in Paris, and attending conferences. Melissa holds professional memberships in the International Clarinet Association, College Music Society, Chamber Music America, Pi Kappa Lambda, and Sigma Alpha Iota.

Melissa Kindy is a candidate for the Doctorate of Musical Arts degree in Clarinet Performance & Literature at the Eastman School of Music. Prior to her time at Eastman, Melissa received Master of Music degrees in Clarinet Performance and Chamber Music Performance from the University of Michigan and a Bachelor of Music degree in Clarinet Performance from Stetson University.


 Colin Mann, Chorus Director, voice instructor, head counselor 

A native of Buffalo, New York, conductor and baritone Colin Mann is a candidate for the Master of Music degree in choral conducting at the Eastman School of Music. He serves as founder and artistic director of Rochester’s East Ave Chorale and director of choirs at Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Greece. Colin has participated in Berkshire Choral International and other summer conducting workshops around the country. He has sung professionally with Voices chamber choir, under the direction of Dr. William Weinert, and assists as chorus manager for the Eastman-Rochester Chorus.  Colin earned a Bachelor of Music degree in music education and voice performance with honors at the State University of New York at Fredonia along with NYS initial teaching certification in music (K-12).


Russek Headshot Mary Russek, violin faculty 

Mary Theresa Russek proudly represents her hometown of Hershey, PA as a violinist and teacher. She is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY, earning a Bachelor of Music in Music Education and Violin Performance with Oleh Krysa. In 2014, she performed at Carnegie Hall as a member of the Hershey Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Dr. Sandra Dackow. She also has performed at many venues throughout Central Pennsylvania and with the Eastman Philharmonia. Her most memorable experience was playing with the Central Pennsylvania Suzuki Strings in a Governor’s Awards for the Arts ceremony honoring television personality Mr. Rogers.

As a young teen, Mary performed with the Hershey Symphony Festival Strings at numerous national conferences including the American String Teachers Association, National Association for Music Educators, Midwest Clinic, and the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association where she was concertmaster of the 2011 All-State Orchestra. Mary is an Active Member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas. She is privileged to perform on a 1772 violin made in England by Benjamin Banks.


  Micah Harrow, percussion faculty 

Micah Harrow is percussionist currently perusing a double major in music performance and music teaching and learning at the Eastman School of Music, where he studies percussion with Michael Burritt. Micah is a graduated Eastman Community Music School where he earned an Honors Diploma. He was the 2015 Special Award winner in the RPO League Young Artist Competition and he has performed a solo concerto in Eastman Theatre with the Rochester Philharmonic Youth Orchestra. Micah will spend the summer of 2017 studying at the National Orchestral Institute at the University of Maryland. Micah has also participated in the MasterWorks Festival in Cedarville, Ohio where he served as a percussion TA and was selected as a concerto competition recitalist. Besides his ensembles at Eastman, Micah has been a member of the Greece Symphony, the Brighton Philharmonic, the MasterWorks Festival and Philharmonic Orchestras, and the Eastman Brass Guild.