Megan O'Brien is a classically-trained soprano, with experience leading song in churches across the United States and European festivals. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Vocal Performance from the Benjamin T. Rome School of Music at Catholic University of America, and continued her studies in New York and performed with the Amalfi Coast Music Festival. Megan has been a member of the St. Patrick's Cathedral (New York) choir, Baltimore Symphony choir, and the soprano soloist in churches from New York, Baltimore, to San Francisco. Most recently she has led the men's Catholic choir at San Quentin Prison. When she's not singing, she homeschools her children and is a private tutor, so she brings various pedagogical methods and supportive demeanor to her voice teaching.
Irene Cheng is a musician, dancer, conductor, and educator. In 2022, she completed her Master’s of Music degree in Vocal Performance from Cal State East Bay (CSUEB) and in 2023 the Music Education Certificate Program also from CSUEB. She is currently the Assistant Conductor for The Dragon Singers community choir in the East Bay. Irene is also a concert percussionist for the West County Winds and for the Kensington Symphony Orchestra.
In the 2022-23 school year, Irene served as the Associate Conductor for the Cal State East Bay University Choir, as well as the Associate Conductor for the East Bay Youth Orchestra, led by Dr. William Harrington, where she also rehearsed and conducted one or two pieces per concert set. Since 2013 Irene has been teaching either group or private lessons for piano, singing, percussion/drum set, and ukulele. For ten years, Irene has also played keyboard, and drums, and sang for various church worship bands, and for a country band called Suzi and the Sidewinders.
The fondest musical childhood memories began with the family watching The Lawrence Welk Show after dinner. They featured all sorts of musical acts, and Irene’s father held her in his arms and danced around the living room to old-fashioned polka music. Formal music training started with private classical piano at age nine, but a few years later, a different teacher taught Irene how to improvise with chords. By the time she got into a high school jazz band, those improvisational skills came in handy on the piano and vibraphone. In middle school and high school Irene started her journey as a percussionist too. Marching band, concert band, and drumline filled her early mornings, afternoons, and weekends. In college, Irene began singing with the Women’s Chorale at UC Berkeley, where she first became aware of how music performed well has the power to move audiences, even though they could not understand the words.
As she got married and had children, Irene decided to be a homeschooler. While teaching her own children, she also volunteered to teach group classes with HEARTS Homeschool Coop one day a week for other homeschooled children: group piano, percussion, drum set, choir, partner dance, choreography, dance aerobics, long distance running, work working, machine sewing, art, creative writing, and more. Mrs. Cheng was the “Fun Mom.” People would say that they were surprised how these fun
classes were actually not easy, but kids were willing to put in the time because they loved what they were learning. In those 18 years of volunteer teaching, Irene grew deeper in her calling to keep teaching even after her children grew up and left home. To prepare for becoming a professional music teacher, Irene went back to college later in life and studied music for 9 years. Music is one of the very best things in life, and there is nothing that brings more joy to Irene then shared it with others by giving them the tools to make music their own.
Madeline Belknap (she/her) is a musician, actor, and educator based in San Francisco. As a music teacher, Madeline has worked with students of all ages as a private piano, voice and flute teacher, choir instructor, and music director. She is trained in classical and collaborative piano, classical flute, and musical theatre and pop voice. Her music directing credits include The Aristocats Jr, Frozen Jr, The Magic Tree House: Pirates Past Noon, and Seussical The Musical Jr. She also is a composer for Theatre for Young Audiences, and her previous compositions include Fantastagirl and the Math Monster at Adventure Theatre (nominated for a Helen Hayes in Washington, DC), and The Seaside Adventures of Zoey Brine at the Bowie Center for the Performing Arts. She earned a BA in Music and a BA in Drama from the Catholic University of America.
Jennifer is a musician based out of the SF Bay Area. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Music from Sacramento State. She was choir director, piano accompanist and vocalist for St. Anthony Parish in Winters, St. Peter Catholic Church in Dixon and St. George Episcopal Church in Carmichael. She played drums and piano for Holy Spirit Church in Fairfield. Jennifer taught piano and voice at Natomas School of Music in Sacramento and Music Works in El Cerrito (now Rockin' Robbies). She taught preschool group music classes at Young World Preschool in Daly City and Gymboree Play & Music in San Francisco. She was drummer for the Beatles cover band, the Peptones, and she enjoys singing in many genres, including opera, jazz, funk and R&B.
In her own words: Music is a great outlet to express oneself and develop practical skills such as focus, listening, coordination and timing. There is nothing quite like music that combines fun, complexity and discipline all at once. I am happy to share that experience with others as a teacher and performer.
Olga Korolev is a classically trained singer, pianist and theater artist. Coming from a musical
family, she officially started her musical journey by beginning to learn the piano at 8 years old.
She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music with a voice concentration and a Theater and Biblical
Studies Minor from Biola University. While at Biola, she sung with the Biola Chorale at the
2016 Western Division ACDA Conference and continued her piano studies as well. She has
served as a choir accompanist for church and was a Conservatory Fellow at the American
Conservatory Theater working with the Young Conservatory and Studio A.C.T. programs.
Before moving back to the Bay area, she taught Suzuki piano to students ranging from 3 years to
adult in the Sacramento region. She is certified with the Suzuki Association of Americas in the
ECC (Every Child Can) course and Book 1 where she received her training under Caroline
Fraser and Annette Lee. She is also a member of the Suzuki Association of Americas. She is
passionate about building up students as well-rounded musicians and also as individuals where
ever they go in life.
Since 2020, Isabelle has been teaching piano to students ranging all ages. As a passionate music educator, Isabelle hopes to inspire the next generation of musicians by fostering a supportive and engaging learning environment. Her aim is to not only impart technical skills but also to ignite a lifelong love for music in her students. Through her guidance, she hopes to empower them to explore their creativity, develop their musical abilities, and discover the joy of self-expression through music.
Isabelle has been playing the piano as long as she could sit at the piano bench. She took classical piano lessons for over 10 years, dedicating her later years studying the colorful compositions of Debussy, George Winston, Yann Teirsen and Vince Guaraldi to name a few.
Isabelle attended Cal Poly Humboldt where she pursued a Minor in Music in addition to her degreed focused in Education. She had the opportunity to perform in several ensembles including the renowned Calypso band, Jazz band, University Singers and the World Percussion ensemble. Isabelle also formed her own trio, Tessoulation, inspired by jazz-soul fusion and world percussion, performing as the lead singer and songwriter, guitarist, and keyboard player.
If you or your child is ready to embark on a musical journey, Isabelle welcomes you to join her in a collaborative and inspiring musical experience. Isabelle focuses on teaching classical music curriculum but is also capable of preparing students who are interested in or already working on ABRSM exams through grade 6. Get in touch to schedule a lesson and embark on an exciting path of musical discovery together.
“My parents always had classical music blasting on the record player and we all went to lots of concerts,” Hilary says. “I loved singing in school and church choirs when I was young.” In grade school, Hilary’s grandmother gave her a tiny little electric organ with a book, and Piano lessons followed, continuing through high school. Hilary went on to UC Santa Cruz, receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Music, with an emphasis on piano and performance. She’s taught piano both privately and at the San Francisco Community Music Center for over 24 years. She was even a church music director for a number of years in Point Richmond.
American Soprano, Tamara Haskin, made her international stage debut in 2009, at the Macedonian
Opera in the title role of Verdi’s Aida. Since that time, she has earned critical acclaim as a Verdian
soprano singing close to 100 performances of AIDA, as well as other important verismo roles on the
national and international opera and concert stages throughout the USA and Europe. Tamara earned
her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance at Wichita State University, with Master’s work at the
Philadelphia College of Performing Arts, and intensive vocal studies at the DeJean International
Institute of Vocal Arts in Paris, France. For 16 years of her career life, Tamara lived in Paris, France
and Berlin, Germany, where she traveled and sang extensively throughout Europe. She speaks both
French and German.
As a voice teacher, Tamara enjoys working with beginners, intermediate, advanced singers and
established professionals. She has maintained private voice studios in the United States and Europe
throughout her singing career. She has held Adjunct Teaching positions at North Central College and
Music Tech in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In her 18-year of extensive vocal training and mentorship
from the noted international vocal pedagogue David Jones, Tamara has developed important teaching skills necessary to remedy various vocal issues, by employing concepts from the Swedish-Italian school of singing. These concepts are geared toward developing freedom and balance of voices of any age, genre or musical style. Working both as a vocal technician and a vocal coach, Tamara is passionate in helping singers discover vocal freedom in a fun, positive and nurturing environment. Ms. Haskin currently teaches online only.