MEET THE FACULTY
To find out more about our faculty, please contact us at your convenience.



LOCATION

2790 W. College Ave., Ste. 7
  State College, PA 16801
PHONE

814-238-3451

Evelyn Bookhammer (Traditional and Suzuki Cello) studied at Mansfield University and Penn State University, and currently performs with Altoona Symphony and Juniata College Symphony. Ms. Bookhammer is certified through book 5 in Suzuki Repertoire, and has studied up through book 7 overview courses through the American Suzuki Association.  Ms. Bookhammer has been teaching Suzuki cello in State College since 1989.  She also teaches private and group lessons in Hollidaysburg, and is an adjunct faculty member at Juniata College in Huntingdon, PA.  She has studied with Marco Branda, Irwin Borodkin, Leonard Feldman, and Kim Cook.  Evelyn is skilled in teaching anyone!  She loves beginners and experienced players from age 3 up to adult, believing all have inborne talent that can be developed in a positive environment with the proper nurturing.  Evelyn loves teaching cello and believes her students are a blessing! 
Brandy Davis (Clarinet, Saxophone) holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education from the Pennsylvania State University.  She has been teaching clarinet and saxophone lessons for 12 years.  Brandy is also a freelance musician with experience in performing a wide variety of music with various groups.  Some of these groups include the Nittany Valley and Altoona Symphonies, FUSE Productions, Singing Onstage Studios, Penn State Centre Stage, P & J Productions, Moshannon Valley YMCA Student Youth Theatre Program, and the State College Area Municipal Band.
Michael Divino (Violin) is currently a Graduate Teaching Assistant at Penn State University, where he studies with Professor James Lyon.  At Penn State, he is a member of the Philharmonic and Chamber orchestras, and is responsible for teaching violin lessons to non-majors.  After completing his undergraduate studies with Akemi Takayama at Shenandoah Conservatory, he built a studio of private students in Southern Maryland, with students ranging in age from 5-50. He was most recently a participant in the Wintergreen Summer Music Academy, nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains.  
Justin Dorsey (Double Bass, Electric Bass Guitar, Electric Guitar, Basic Guitar and Intermediate Level Guitar) began his training both in the State College public schools and alongside local musicians including his father and brother playing roots music. From there both an interest in jazz and improvised, as well as orchestral and chamber, music flourished. Earning both his bachelor’s degree and a professional performance certificate at Penn State studying with Rob Nairn, he was able to establish a foundation for string playing and pedagogy rooted in the Viennese tradition. Then going on to earn his master’s degree at Duquesne University studying with Aaron White of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. This range of training from bar band musician to orchestral bassist, has imbued Justin with an appreciation for all forms of music and the power for change it represents.
Diane Gold
Diane Gold Toulsen (Recorder, Flute, Piano) has been on the faculty of the Music Academy since near its inception. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music and Columbia University, she is principal flute of the York (PA), Nittany Valley, and Altoona Symphony Orchestras. A member of the Huntingdon Trio and Easterly Chamber Players, she has performed extensively in the United States and Europe. Ms. Gold Toulson taught for many years at Bucknell University, and Juniata and York Colleges.
Arthur Goldstein
Arthur Goldstein (Piano, Composition, Jazz Studies) holds an MFA in composition from Pennsylvania State University with emphasis in piano and has studied at the Eastman School of Music and the Berklee College of Music. Mr. Goldstein teaches jazz history and music appreciation at Penn State University and is active as a solo recitalist, accompanist, and leader of his own jazz quartet. Mr. Goldstein has two solo recordings, "Piano Solos" and "Intersections", devoted to twentieth century piano literature.
Paul Kim (Cello and Suzuki Cello) picked up the cello at four years of age after watching his older siblings taking lessons on the piano and violin. He began with Suzuki instruction, working his way through Book Four before eventually enrolling at the Peabody Institute's Preparatory Division in Baltimore. Transitioning to traditional solo studies under Paula Skolnick-Childress, he also undertook chamber studies with the Peabody Trio and orchestral studies with Rebecca Henry and Gene Young. As a member of the Peabody Sinfonia, he had the opportunity to tour Germany, The Netherlands, and Belgium.  While earning his BM in Music Production and Engineering at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Paul's solo cello studies continued under Eugene Friesen, branching out beyond classical music into jazz, blues, and folk traditions. Ensemble and orchestral work with Friesen, Mimi Rabson, and Mitch Haupers, as well as studio session work, allowed him to explore contemporary styles and free improvisation. Suzuki-certified for cello through Book 5, Paul hopes to inspire a passion for the instrument in his students, and to have them see possibilities within and without the classical realm. In addition to offering private lessons, Paul will be leading various group and ensemble classes.
Hannah Lin (Traditional and Suzuki Violin) completed a master's degree in Suzuki pedagogy from Ithaca College, studying violin with Calvin Wiersma and Suzuki pedagogy with Carrie Reuning-Hummel. In addition to her long-term (through all ten Suzuki violin books) training at IC, Hannah has received teacher training from Suzuki pedagogues Edward Kreitman, Kimberly Meier-Sims, Thomas Wermuth, and Sharon Miller. For her undergraduate studies, Hannah attended Penn State as a Schreyer Honors Scholar, earning a bachelor's degree in music education. At PSU, she studied violin with James Lyon and string pedagogy with Robert Gardner. As a teacher, Hannah has taught privately since 2011 with students ranging from age 4 to adult. She served as a graduate assistant to James Mick at IC, teaching beginner strings to undergraduate music education students. In addition to her teaching activities, Hannah enjoys performing as a solo, chamber, and orchestral musician.
Joshua Long
Joshua E. Long (Euphonium, Trumpet, French Horn, Trombone) holds degrees in band/wind ensemble conducting, music education, and euphonium performance.  Currently, he is completing a PhD in adult education at the Pennsylvania State University and is the Bellefonte Community Band Director.  Joshua has experience as a public school teacher, performing musician, community ensemble instructor, and conductor of university bands.  He has research interests in community music ensembles, nutrition for musicians, instrument repair, and historical bands.  Joshua performs as a conductor, community band director and euphonium soloist with various musical groups.  Joshua and his wife Becky also own and operate the Art & Music Emporium where he is the primary music instructor and instrument repair technician, specializing in brass.  To find more information, please visit www.joshuaelong.com.
Mark Minnich (Suzuki Violin) holds a B.M. in Violin Performance from Bowling Green State University, as well as an M.M. in Violin Performance and an M.A. in Music Theory and History from Penn State. Mark has performed in the United States, Canada, Germany, Austria, Poland, China, Greece, and Tanzania, and has played as soloist with the Toledo Youth Orchestra, the Toledo International Youth Orchestra, the Firelands Symphony, and the Pennsylvania Centre Orchestra. An enthusiast of diverse musical styles, he has participated in jazz combos, Latin rock bands, new music ensembles, string quartets, and fiddle camps, as well as with the Mannheim Steamroller orchestra, the world tour of Chicago: The Musical, and Grammy award winning pianist Billy Childs. Mark performs as concertmaster with the Williamsport Symphony Orchestra and with his wife in the innovative violin duo Revamped. He holds positions teaching violin, viola, chamber ensembles, and group classes at the State College Suzuki Program and the Grier School.
Sally Williams Minnich (Suzuki Violin) began Suzuki violin lessons at age four and was accepted at age 16 as a preparatory student of David Russell at the Cleveland Institute of Music. She has appeared as a soloist at numerous events, including the Electronic Music Midwest Festival in 2011 and the Pennsylvania Centre Orchestra in 2014. She also recorded strings for Superchic[k]’s album “Rock What you Got” which was nominated for a Grammy in 2008. She performs regularly with her husband in the innovative violin duo Revamped. Williams Minnich holds bachelor's degrees in violin performance and music composition and a master’s degree in violin performance from Bowling Green State University as well as a master's degree in music education from Pennsylvania State University. She has had the privilege of studying with violin pedagogues Vasile Beluska and James Lyon and with composers Burton Beerman, Marilyn Shrude, Elainie Lillios, and Mikel Kuehn. She also teaches violin at the Grier School for Girls in Birmingham, PA and is Suzuki-certified through violin book 3.
Victoria Petrosky
Victoria Petrosky (Piano, Theory, Solfege, Accompaniment) trained as a child at The Moscow Children's Music School #36. She is a graduate of the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow, with a B.A. in music theory, and of Gnessin's Russian Academy of Music in Moscow, where she obtained a Master's degree in music theory and piano pedagogy. At the Gnessin Academy Victoria studied with Galina Turkina (of the famed Galina and Yulia Turkina duo). Victoria has been teaching for over twenty years, first at The Moscow Children's Music School and later at the Main Line Music Academy near Philadelphia. She has served as music director and editor on music programs for Russian Radio and has been active as an accompanist, including several ballet companies and the Bolshoi Theater Choreography College in Moscow.
Joanne Rutkowski
 Joanne Rutkowski (Children's Music) Professor Emeritus at The Pennsylvania State University, taught general and choral music, K-8, in Ohio and New York and continues to teach music classes for young children. While at Penn State she taught undergraduate and graduate classes in elementary general music, care and nurture of the child voice, curriculum, research, and music learning and development; she and her students provided music classes for preschool and kindergarten children at the Bennett Family Center and Hort Woods Childcare Center; she was also Music Education area coordinator and Graduate Program Chair. Her research has focused on the nature of children's singing voices and techniques and materials for helping uncertain singers in a classroom setting.  More recently she has explored issues related to graduate education and preparation of music teacher educators.  Joanne has presented her work at international, national, regional, and state conferences and symposia and published in numerous journals and books.  She held leadership and editorial positions with the International Society of Music Education (ISME), the National Association for Music Education (NAfME), and the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association (PMEA).  She is a frequent visiting professor at various universities across the county and a workshop presenter for music teachers.
Cathy Scafidi
Cathy Scafidi (Piano) holds a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from Oberlin Conservatory of Music and has been teaching piano for over twenty years to students beginner through advanced levels. Ms. Scafidi also teaches at Juniata College and the Grier School.
Ed Scully (Cello) is a graduate student at Penn State University, pursuing his master’s degree in cello performance under the direction of Kim Cook. He also earned a professional performance certificate from Penn State and completed his bachelor’s degree at Florida State University in music education. As an educator, his experience ranges from orchestral teaching to chamber music coaching and private instruction, spanning from elementary school students to adults. He currently performs with the Altoona Symphony Orchestra as well as both the Penn State Philharmonic and Chamber Orchestras. His passion lies in orchestral and chamber playing as well as building a private studio and is looking forward to serving the State College community as a Music Academy instructor.
Carolyn Sepp
Carolyn Sepp (Piano, Voice) graduated from Elizabethtown College with degrees in voice and piano performance, along with an additional degree in professional writing.  Upon graduating in 2013, she joined the faculty at the State College Music Academy where she currently teaches piano and voice. Carolyn recently completed her first year as a graduate student at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania and plans to receive a Master of Arts in music performance by May 2017.  In addition to teaching, Carolyn frequently performs for weddings throughout Pennsylvania and accompanies for the REX Performing Arts summer camps each year.
Kevin Sims (Percussion, Piano) has been teaching piano and percussion to students of all ages since 2005. While studying classical percussion at Manhattan School of Music in New York City, he began to focus on contemporary and experimental music, working closely with composers and helping to form Red Light New Music. While studying at the Musikhochschule Freiburg in southwestern Germany, he had the opportunity to travel to music festivals in Switzerland, Korea, Russia and Ukraine. Kevin's experiences with new and experimental work, improvisation, and various approaches to composition, are big influences on his teaching. He is currently an active performer as a soloist, with the duo Moth Bucket, and in the Open Music Ensemble (which he also directs), as well as other occasional projects in the area.
Christiana Usenza (Percussion, World Drumming, Drum Set, Ukulele, Jazz Piano-Beginner, Guitar) received her B.A. in music from Goucher College (Baltimore), and her M.A. in ethnomusicology from Tufts University, with a focus on the African diaspora. Christiana served as director of the music program at “The Hyde Square Task Force,” which provided over 130 students in Boston’s “Latino headquarters” with lessons, ensembles, and performance opportunities. She has taught lessons in drums, ukulele, guitar and piano for seven years at several Boston elementary schools, high schools, and colleges, as well as at the after school program, “At Your Door Music.” Christiana also founded her own concert series, called “Afropop Night Live,” which showcases artists from around the world. As a performer, she has played with many bands based in Vermont, Boston, Baltimore, and Los Angeles—and most recently has written, toured, and recorded with “Paper Waves,” an all-female pop group. She loves teaching about African and Afro-Latin music and exposing her students to music from around the world. Her versatility allows her to devise her lessons around a student’s interests and strengths; whether they want to learn basics; write songs; learn to play specific genre, like blues, soul, jazz, rock or pop; or learn music history. She loves expanding people’s knowledge of the world and themselves through music and playfulness.
Brooke Welsh (Piano) is delighted to teach piano at The Music Academy.  She is accepting piano students of all ages.  She teaches individual piano lessons and group piano and plans to start some music courses for young children in the fall.  Brooke holds degrees in Music and Psychology from Susquehanna University and her Masters in Piano from Temple University.  She has taught piano at Settlement Music School in Philadelphia, Temple University and Susquehanna University’s prep program.  She has taught at the Music Academy for 5 years!