Ms. Mayen 'Meimei' Akpan, Piano.
With an eclectic musical taste, and exquisitely unique, diversified upbringing, Mayen's musical palette is inclusive and sweetly influenced by every musical genre. Mayen is a proud, native Houstonian, and has been teaching and tutoring for over 10 years. She loves helping her students discover their amazing talents, explore exciting new musical genres, set achievable goals, overcome challenges, encourage consistent improvement, and instill discipline and high quality performance. Mayen is very patient, kind, and has experience teaching students (from age 4 to adult).
Miss Akpan is especially grateful for her most recent piano performance engagements (California Concerto Weekend 2015, 4-time Houston Symphony Spotlight performer - Spring 2015, Piano Texas International Academy & Institute 2015, International Keyboard Institute & Festival 2015, and California Concerto Weekend 2016). She hopes to continue a good balance between teaching, composing, and performing music.
Mayen loves God, family, music, tennis, traveling, learning languages, and encouraging everyone to pursue their dreams, wholeheartedly and without apology. She is excited to share her many musical gifts with students of the Academy.
Mr. Wyatt Coleman, Violin and Piano.
Wyatt has been studying violin for 18 years. Originally from Raleigh, North Carolina, he was member of the Triangle Youth Philharmonic for six years, ranging in positions from Principal of second violins to Associate Concertmaster. A founding member of the Gemini Quartet, he attended the Fischoff National Chamber Competition and finished as a quartet finalist. He has participated in multiple masterclasses and worked with prominent musicians such as, William Preucil, Leila Josefewicz, Lucie Robert, and Emmanuel Borok.
Wyatt holds a Bachelor's Degree in Music Performance from the University of Houston Moores School of Music. He plans to pursue a Master's Degree in violin performance following his graduation. Wyatt enjoys teaching violin and piano to students of the Academy and crafts each lesson to allow his students to flourish.
Mr. Richard Power, Guitar, Piano, and Violin.
Richard has studied music for over a decade under Chris Robbins and was awarded he CCISD Intermediate Solo and Ensemble Competition gold medal for violin solo in 2008 as well as the UIL Region XVII Solo and Ensemble Competition gold medal for both guitar solo and violin solo. In 2010 he was awarded the UIL Region XVII Solo and Ensemble Competition gold medal for guitar solo and violin solo again. He has performed with the Clearlake Symphony Orchestra and the Clearlake Philharmonic Orchestra for the past 6 years.
In 2011 Richard was awarded the UIL Region 17 gold medal for guitar solo and violin solo and the gold medal for guitar performance in the Texas Solo and Ensemble Competition. He is currently pursuing a degree in Music on a Music Scholarship. He teaches piano, violin, & guitar for the Academy and enjoys helping each student find the instrument and style of music that speaks to their heart.
Mrs. Heather Scharbor, B.P.A, Academy Director and Piano.
Heather is the Director of the Academy. She has been an arts advocate in the Pearland area for the last decade striving for excellence in the arts for music, dance, and theatre. She has studied, trained and performed both nationally and internationally in these disciplines. It is her honor and privilege to provide uncommon excellence in training in piano, voice, violin, guitar, and cello to children in the Pearland area. Mrs. Scharbor’s mission for the Academy is to allow each student’s interest in music to flourish and to guide each student joyfully in developing mastery of their instrument while enriching the cultural atmosphere of Pearland.
Allegro also supports numerous local efforts that serve children and families in Pearland in need as well as Musicians without Borders which is an organization that brings healing through music to children and families in war-torn countries around the world.
Mrs. Scharbor is also an active member of the Pearland Arts League and Pearland Chamber of Commerce.
Ms. Victoria King, Academy Coordinator.
Victoria originally from Florida, began playing the piano around the age of 10. After laying a foundation with the piano she then took a great interest in learning to play the guitar. She learned how to play from her Father at home and has enjoyed and loved it ever since. She grew up singing in school choirs and also in the church that she attended in Brazil where she served as an accounts executive for LHR Services and Equipment Inc. Victoria also worked for LHR in Inside Sales in Houston. She is fluent in Portuguese and conversational in Spanish.
Victoria believes that music is essential in every child’s life, because it is a way for them to feel their emotions and express themselves in something as beautiful as music.
Ms. Cheryl Lollar, Piano.
Mrs. Cheryl Lollar holds a Bachelor’s degree in Music Therapy from Arizona State University. Her passion has been teaching piano to both children and adults for the past 30 years. She taught in studios in Arizona and in Houston private schools. Having recently moved to Pearland, she was thrilled to find the Allegro Academy which has the same philosophy of inspiring students with private lessons that she has built her teaching career on.
While teaching in Houston, she had several students that stayed with her from age 6 all the way through high school. She laid the foundation for students who went on to attend HSPVA in Houston. She has also used her Music Therapy training to teach piano to special needs students for many years. She has also taught adults in a therapeutic setting.
For students of all ages and levels, she strives to instill joy from music by using fun method books, playing duets, and also focusing on the style of music the student enjoys. Her goal with every student is that they develop a lifelong understanding and love of music from a firm foundation of piano lessons.
Mr. Christian Ibanez, Cello & Piano.
Christian Ibanez studies cello and music education at the University of Houston. Christian studies cello with Vagram Saradjian and has previously studied with Evgeni Raychev and Charlotte Eads. He also performs with the Moores School of Music Symphony Orchestra. Christian is excited to teach cello and piano to students of the Academy.
Mr. Noah Chojnacki, Piano
Noah Chojnacki began studying piano with the nationally distinguished artist/teacher, Dr. Joseph Zins, of Crocus Hill Studios in Saint Paul, Minnesota and is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance, studying under Nancy Weems at the University of Houston. Noah has received many awards and honors. In March of 2015, he was selected by audition for the Minnesota Public Radio (MPR) Minnesota Varsity’s Featured Round. As a result, Noah made a very exciting professional recording at the MPR studios which was later aired on Classical MPR. In February of 2015, he was a finalist of the Dubois Piano Competition and Festival in Ohio. In January, 2016, Noah was selected by an international jury for the e-Junior International Piano Competition Disklavier Recording Round which placed him in the top 60 internationally. In November, 2014, he won Second Place in the Minnetonka Young Artist Competition as well as Third Place in the Saint Paul Piano Teacher's Association (SPPTA) Concerto Competition. He was also the Third Place Winner of the national Augustana College 2013 Lee Piano Competition, Division III, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. In April of that same year, he received Third Place in the Thursday Musical Scholarship Competition. At the Young Artist World Piano Festival, Noah was selected for the Honors Recital both in 2014 and 2010. Noah was a Finalist in the Young Artist World Piano Festival’s Concerto Competition (2014, 2013), and The Schubert Club Scholarship Competition (2012). Noah has been teaching since 2014 enjoys working with piano students of all ages and levels. His engaging teaching style is a hit with students of the academy and his passion for music is contagious.
Ms. Rhiannon Bishop, Piano
Ms. Bishop has been performing since age six and is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance, studying under Nancy Weems at the University of Houston. In 2016, she performed as soloist with San Antonio Symphony at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts in six performances of Saint-Saens’ Carnival of the Animals. She has also performed with the University of the Incarnate Word Orchestra. She has performed in twenty-eight masterclasses. Some of which include Seymour Bernstein, Boris Slutsky, Eduardo Delgado, Nelita True, Douglas Humpherys, Enrico Elisi, and Jon Kimura Parker. She has performed several times on Austin’s classical radio station, KMFA 89.5, as well as San Antonio’s classical radio station, KPAC 88.3 FM, where she had one of her solo recitals broadcasted. She has won numerous competitions around the United States, such as the Marian Garcia Young Artist Piano Competition, New Orleans Piano Institute Competition, Texas Music Teachers Association Piano Competition, Baylor-Waco Piano Competition, Texas State Young Artist Piano Competition, Austin Young Artist Piano Competition, McLennan Young Artist Piano Competition, McKinney Young Artist Piano Competition, and Debose National Piano Competition. Rhiannon has been teaching since 2015 and enjoys sharing her dynamic teaching style with students of Allegro.
Mr. Joseph Rodriguez, Piano, Trumpet, and Voice
Joseph’s passion for music emerged when he purchased his first trumpet at nine years old. Throughout high school Joseph served as band president, worked his way up to section leader, and later became his high school band’s drum major. His senior year in high school, Joseph was recognized for his superior musicianship, excellence, and dedication to the music program.
Joseph has 13 years of experience in music and performance. He is proficient in a variety of genres such as symphonic band, chamber choir, jazz, mariachi, and church choir. Joseph’s most memorable musical achievement to-date is performing in the All-State symphonic band for the Texas Music Educators Association convention.
Joseph is currently pursuing a degree in audio engineering. Joseph enjoys sharing his love for music with others. He finds it rewarding to teach students of the academy and watch their musical talents grow.
Mr. Nathan Mays, Piano, Guitar, Double Bass, Composition, Improvisation
Nathan Mays is an active musician, teacher, and versatile composer from the Gulf of Texas, who has collaborated with numerous musicians, dancers, and painters to explore the artistic bounds of modern music. He began studying composition in 2010 at San Jacinto Community College, finishing his Bachelors of Music in Composition at Sam Houston State University and Masters of Music in Composition at Texas State University. Nathan’s music has appeared throughout the United States and Europe in festivals and on the air.
While maintaining an active composition career, Nathan regularly performs in the Houston area and enjoys teaching double bass, piano, guitar, and composition to students of the Academy.
Ms. Kimberly Belsley, Special Needs Piano
Kimberly Belsley is a certified teacher who has studied piano since she was 7 years old. She was born with a disability that limits her hand span and finger movement. Kimberly has overcome this obstacle, however, and continues studying piano with her mentor. Kimberly wants students at the Academy to love music and overcome their own obstacles, no matter what they may be. She loves working with children and adults who enjoy her dynamic and energetic teaching style.
Kimberly holds a Bachelor of Arts degree that enables her to teach Early Childhood – 6th grade General Education, Early Childhood – 12th grade Special Education, Early Childhood – 12th grade English as a Second Language and Special Needs Piano.
Ms. Amanda Corbett, Piano
Amanda has studied piano for many years and earned superior ratings in multiple National Piano Guild auditions. In addition to piano, Amanda has played multiple instruments over the years including flute and oboe. She rediscovered her love of singing in high school when she joined choir. She became the first student in the district to make the All State Mixed Chorus in over 10 years. She has been a member of the University of Houston Concert Women’s Chorus, the University of Houston Concert Chorale, and the Houston Saengerbund Damenchor and Gemischterchor.
Amanda holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics. She plans to get her Master’s in Education and teach math at the high school or college level.
Amanda is excited to share her love of music and math with the students of the Academy
Mr. Charles Stanley, Guitar & Piano
Charles Stanley is the Worship Leader at Redeemer Church. Charles is a native Texan who grew up in Nacogdoches. He has served on church staffs in youth and college ministry. More recently, Charles worked at a faith-based drug and alcohol rehab center in Lufkin called the Dream Center. Charles is a kid magnet and enjoys teaching guitar and piano to students of the academy.
Ms. Shannon O'Hara, Voice & Piano
A Los Angeles native, Shannon O’Hara grew up with music and has been studying voice for 7 years. After attending the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, where she was able to play many and diverse roles such as Carmen in Carmen High and Cinderella in the production of Pacific Cinderella in Hangzhou China, as part of the Full Circle Opera Project. She moved to Texas two years ago and has been studying Vocal Performance at the University of Houston with Cynthia Clayton. She has performed in Moore’s School of Music Opera productions as a chorus member in La Rondine and as Sister Anjelica (The Inspector) in John Musto’s The Inspector. She plans to continue her career as a musician by obtaining a Master’s of Music. She hopes that her passion for music will influence her students and is so happy to be teaching at Allegro.
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