Ryan Frost (percussion, USA) – June 19 2017


Frost headshotRyan Frost joined the UNI School of Music faculty in 2016 where he teaches applied percussion lessons, percussion methods, and directs the UNI Percussion/Marimba, West African (UNI-WADE), and Taiko Drum Ensembles.  He previously held teaching positions at Fairmont State University, Waynesburg University, Washington and Jefferson College, and Middle Tennessee State University.  Frost was pleased to receive the Outstanding Adjunct Award for Teaching Excellence at Fairmont State University.

As an active educator and performer, Frost has experience in western and non-western music and has presented clinics and hands-on workshops across the country for groups of all ages and levels of experience. He was the recipient of the Global Education Opportunities grant enabling him to study Ghanaian drumming and dance at the Dagbe Cultural Institute and Arts Center and the Dagara Music Center in Ghana.  In addition to African drumming, Frost has performed with and led Brazilian, Indonesian gamelan, Japanese taiko, and steel drum ensembles, which enabled him to perform with the WVU Steel Band at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival and serve on the staff of the Ellie Mannette Festival of Steel Summer Music Festival. 

Frost’s research, “Halim El-Dabh’s Use of Images to Depict Sound in Sonic No. 7 and Sonic No. 10,” was featured at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention and won first place in the West Virginia University Creative Arts, Faculty-Student Mentored Graduate Research Awards.

Frost has performed with the Morgantown Community Orchestra, Waterloo/Cedar Falls Symphony Orchestra, Dubuque Symphony Orchestra, and Wartburg Community Symphony Orchestra.  His primary teachers include Michael Vercelli, George Willis, Lalo Davila, Jim White, David Pruett, Randy Hogancamp, Jeffrey Smith, and Allan Jacobson.  Frost received a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from West Virginia University, a Master of Arts degree from Middle Tennessee State University, and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Northern Iowa.  Ryan proudly endorses Innovative Percussion sticks and mallets.


Stephanie Mara (piano, Canada) – June 19 2017


Canadian pianist, Stephanie Mara, received an Associate Diploma in Piano Performance from the Royal Conservatory of Music, and a Bachelor Degree in Piano Performance from Wilfrid Laurier University, where she studied with Garth Beckett. She is a collaborative pianist and coach for Wilfrid Laurier University, where she works with students majoring in brass, bassoon, clarinet and cello, and has assisted in master classes with Alain Trudel, Dennis Najoom and James Campbell. Stephanie has performed in recital and gala presentations with Canadian soloists James Campbell, Alistair Kay and Jasper Wood. She performs on a regular basis with Canadian trumpeter/pianist/singer Guy Few in Canada and the United States. Stephanie and Guy Few explore vocal music on their recital CD, Vocalise. She collaborated with flutist Laurel Swinden on Celebrating Women!, a CD of music for flute and piano by women composers. Festival and series appearances include the Elora Festival, the Festival of the Sound, the Ottawa Chamber Music Festival, Barrie Colours of Music, and Quad City Arts (USA). Stephanie’s broadcast credits encompass Bravo, CBC radio and NPR.

Sean Bellaviti (piano, Canada) – June 18 2017


When relocating to Toronto from Italy in 1996, Sean Bellaviti had little idea of the direction the city’s vibrant musical community would take him. As an aspiring jazz pianist he enrolled in York University’s jazz performance program. There he studied with pianists Mark Eisenman and Richard Whiteman. It was during this time that Sean began to take an interest in and actively study musical traditions from Latin American. Among his many teachers were percussionist Luis “Luisito” Orbegoso and pianist Hilario Duran. Upon completing his undergraduate studies, Sean found the breadth of his training and diverse musical passions to be a definite asset in Toronto’s exciting and highly competitive music scene.

To date Sean has performed, arranged and recorded with a large number of jazz musicians including vocalists Lynn Macdonald, Janelle Monique—You Go to My Head (2008)—and Matt Dusk—The Casino (Fox TV, 2004), Walk of Fame (Global TV, 2003). Sean has also worked and recorded with the large majority of Toronto’s salsa groups including Caché—Looking from the Top (2011), The Toronto Sessions (2006)—Proyecto Charanguero, Moda Eterna, The Lula All-Stars and Lady Son y Articulo Vente—Semillas (2008).

In addition he has also performed with many international salsa performers including Eddie Santiago, Tito Rojas, David Pabon, Tony Vega, Mariano Civico, Ralph Irizarry, Henry Fiol, Luis Felipe Gonzalez, Jimmy El Leon, Cheo Andujar, Gabino Pampini, Herman Olivera and Jimmy Bosch. Sean also fronts his own jazz outfit (the Sean Bellaviti Trio) and salsa ensembles Salsa Norte and Conjunto Lacalu. Sean currently the director of the acclaimed Toronto salsa project Lula All Stars whose debut album Salsa de la Buena was released in May 2015.

Sean’s musical interests are not limited solely to performance. In 2005 he completed a Master’s degree in Ethnomusicology at York University and in 2013 received his doctorate in the same discipline from the University of Toronto. Sean’s dissertation, entitled “Negotiating Musical Style in Panama: Nationalism, Professionalism and the Invention of Música Típica Popular,” represents a major contribution to the field of Panamanian cultural studies and popular music studies in particular. Sean has worked extensively as an educator and lecturer at York University, Ryerson University and the University of Toronto. He has presented his work at international academic conferences—including the Caribbean Studies Association and the Society for Ethnomusicology—and is a published scholar.

James Brown (guitar, Canada) – June 18 2017


James Brown (Guitarist, Composer, Educator) is one of Canada’s most talented and versatile musicians. 

He has appeared and recorded with many leading artists and ensembles and has recorded three critically acclaimed CD’s of original music.  His most recent “Sevendaze” on the NGP label features Don Thompson, Quinsin Nachoff, Jim Vivian, and Anthony Michelli.

Other recordings have featured Andrew Downing, Ernie Tollar, John Obercian and Christopher Lee.

James has also performed with The Toronto Symphony Orchestra (with Eric Idol), Toronto Philharmonia, Sound Streams Canada (with The Hilliard Ensemble),  Art of Time Ensemble and CanStage. He recently performed in the Canadian premiere of 2X5: a new work by New York composerSteve Reich.

James’ compositions range from solo guitar to symphony orchestra and have been performed and recorded by numerous ensembles and soloists including: Orchestra Toronto, Trinity Chamber Ensemble, Jeffrey McFadden, William Beauvais and The Montreal Guitar Trio.

James is currently on Faculty at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto where he teaches Guitar, Jazz improvisation and Composition.

Dr. Christopher Burton (Canada) – festival pianist


Christopher Burton studied both violin and piano at the University of Ottawa, receiving his Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance there and a Master of Music, also in Piano Performance, from McGill University.  He earned a Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Accompanying and Chamber Music from the Eastman School of Music.  As a performer he has collaborated with many distinguished instrumentalists and singers.  He was an Assistant Professor of music at Marygrove College in Detroit, teaching piano and coaching voice students,and taught piano, theory and Canadian Music History at the University of Windsor.

Dr. Burton is a much sought after coach and accompanist in Toronto.  In summers past he has been  on the faculty of the Michigan Opera Theater’s summer programs and an official pianist for the National Flute Association, as well as the Bowdoin International Summer Music Festival in Brunswick, Maine.

Recently, Dr. Burton has branched out in new directions, including publication and conducting. He has had published arrangements of sacred music for flute and piano. He writes program notes for the Windsor Symphony.  As a choral conductor, he made his debut leading the Marygrove College Chamber Singers in the U. S. national anthem at a Detroit Tigers baseball game, live at Comerica Park, and also enjoys conducting opera.

Rodrigo Alquati (cello, Brazil) – June 18 2017


Born in Caxias do Sul, RS, Rodrigo Alquati graduated from Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Porto Alegre. After studies in Boston, USA season, joined the class of renowned cellist Martin Ostertag in Karlsruhe, Germany, where he remained from 1997 to 2000 obtained two “Açorianos Music Awards” in 2002: Best Classical musician and scholar best group (obtained with Musitrio ).

In 1994 he won the 1st prize in the Contest of Chamber Music Faculdade Santa Marcelina in São Paulo, to integrate Quintet Scarlatti. Is currently cellist of OSPA and concertmaster of the cellos in PUCRS Orchestra. Besides solos with orchestras and recitals with piano, also dedicated to chamber music. Recorded a CD with the Brahms sonatas for cello and piano and other “live” with works by Schumann, Beethoven and Shostakovich. As a member of Musitrio, recorded the CD “Kinematic”. Recently released the CD “Cantilena”, with works arranged for cello and guitar, with accompaniment by Daniel Wolff.

Christopher Lee (Canada) – June 20 2017


Altus Flutes Artist Christopher Lee is a laureate of the AGIMUS International Competition in Italy and grant recipient of the Canada Council for the Arts. From 1991 to 2013 he was Principal Flute of the Toronto Philharmonia.

With the art of the recital in his focus now, his performances in Canada, the USA, South America and Europe have garnered the acclaim of reviewers, colleagues and audience alike.

“An amazing spectrum of tone colours” ­
Wholenote Magazine

“Magnificent” ­
John Terauds, freelance critic for the Toronto Star

“From the very first note I knew you have what I search for in the flute – originality, creativity and a subtle sense of humour with all the technique to go with it”
Dr. Atarah Ben­Tovim former Principal Flute Royal Liverpool Philharmonic

“Christopher Lee and Richard Shaw (pianist) have gone above and beyond by moving the entire audience”
PAN the Journal of the British Flute Association

“Transcendental! I really can’t describe Christopher’s wonderful playing. What a magician!”
Richard Shaw, pianist.

Chris is a Certified Personal Trainer and a founding faculty member of Whole Musician. A team of four flutists with unique qualifications providing all ­encompassing retreats in North America and Europe. In addition to masterclasses, Chris presents workshops on Interpretation, Fitness, Recording, and Career Guidance.

He has given recitals and masterclasses in Los Angeles, London, Venice, Lima, Madrid, Wyoming, Vancouver, Ottawa, Oklahoma (Northeastern State University and Oklahoma State University), Texas (University of Texas Arlington and University of North Texas), Omaha (University of Nebraska Omaha), Duluth (University of Minnesota Duluth) and for the Los Angeles Flute Guild and the Ottawa Flute Association.

A regular festival guest, he has appeared at the Festival Internacional de Flautistas de Lima Peru (2015, 2016), Encontro de Flautistas in Porto Alegre Brazil (2016), the British Flute Society Convention (2014), the Canadian Flute Association Convention (2013, 2015). 2017 will include appearances at the X Festival Internacional de Flautas de Costa Rica, the Panama Association of Flutists in July and the 45th National Flute Association Convention in Minneapolis in August as well as across Canada.  

He has also performed with other orchestras including the Windsor Symphony, Niagara Symphony, Ontario Philharmonic, Hamilton Ballet Orchestra, and Sinfonia Toronto. From 1989 to 1991 he was Principal Flute of the Band of the Royal Regiment of Canada and from 1994 to 2007 he also played with the Huntsville Festival Symphony during the summer.

On recording he has released two discs; “My Lucky Life” of music for flute, harp and violin and “Bailar conmigo” of music for flute and guitar. He also appears as guest on several other recordings with Samantha Chang, Michael Holt, Euphonia, Morrow and Nurmi and a future recording with the Amadeus Choir.

Chris began formal studies on flute at the age of 19 at the Royal Conservatory of Music. Subsequent studies followed at the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto and he received a licentiate in flute performance from Trinity College of Music, London, England.

Chris performs on the handmade Altus Flute by Suichi Tanaka.

Check out a video of Chris and Vincenzo playing Piazzolla!

Sini Rueda (Peru) – Canadian debut June 19 2017

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Born in Lima – Peru, Sini started her musical studies playing the recorder at the age of 4 with flutist Rosa María Lazón. With 10 years old she began her flute studies with the same teacher, and 5 years later began to study with flutist César Peredo. In 2007 she entered the Conservatorio Nacional de Música in Perú where she began her formal studies with flutist César Vivanco. She graduated on December 2012 and did her senior recital in 2015 getting the title of Licenciado en Música, and continued her studies with flutist Ulla Suokko, her orchestra instructor.
Along her career Sini has participated in many flute festivals and masterclasses including the Nordic Flute Festival- Sweden, Curso Raffaelle Trevisani and ABRAF festival- Brasil, Encuentro Internacional de flautistas en Bariloche and Música y Naturaleza- Argentina, Festival de flautas en Villarrica-Chile, Festival Internacional de Flautistas- Perú, and William Bennett flute course-Belgium, where she was awarded the Arista Scholarship. She has also participated as soloist with the National Symphonic Orchestra of Peru, and has won the best places in the Young Flutists Contest of the Flute Festival in Perú.
Since 2013 she has been part of Orquesta Sinfónica Infantil y Juvenil, Orquesta Sinfónica Sinfonía por el Perú, and Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional Juvenil Bicentenario conducted by Pablo Sabat.

Louis Papachristos (Canada) – June 19 2017


Described as one of “Canada’s finest flutists” by the CBC, Louis Papachristos has had the pleasure to perform for audiences internationally. He was named principal flute of Orchestra Toronto at the age of 16 and has held that position on three different occasions over the last three decades. Louis has also served as principal flute with The Sarasota Summer Festival Orchestra, The Focus Festival Orchestra in New York City, The Banff Centre Summer Festival Orchestra, The Juilliard Orchestra, The Hart House Orchestra, The University of Toronto Symphony Orchestra, The Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra and for performances and recordings with professional freelance orchestras in Toronto.

 As a solo recitalist and chamber musician Louis has been invited to perform at The National Flute Convention, Alice Tully Hall, The Royal Hall in England, Roy Thomson Hall, The Toronto Centre for the Performing Arts, Place Des Arts, The National Arts Centre, The Glenn Gould Studio and at other concert series venues. He has had the privilege to collaborate and perform with some of the finest conductors and musicians including Sir Andrew Davis, James De Preist, Otto-Werner Mueller, Richard Bradshaw, Jose Luis Garcia, David Zafer, William Aide, The St. Lawrence String Quartet and The Amici Ensemble. Louis is frequently heard on standard and satellite radio broadcasts as a result of live performances and diverse musical CD projects that have reached gold record certification status within Canada. At the age of 17, Louis was The President’s Award Winner at The Kiwanis National Music Festival and a prize winner at the Toronto and Montreal Symphony Concerto Competitions.

Following his studies at the University of Toronto with Douglas Stewart, Louis was awarded The Chalmers Foundation Arts Grant to study with Julius Baker at the renowned Juilliard School in New York City. In addition to playing the flute he has also enjoyed teaching for the Toronto District School Board. Louis currently lives in Toronto with his wife Venessa and their two children Marina and Daniel.

Samantha Chang (Canada) – June 19 2017

Samantha Chang
Hailed by The WholeNote Magazine for her “lyricism, resourcefulness, and strong personal commitment to the flute,” Canadian flutist Samantha Chang is a musical tour de force and rising artist. Her mandate to perform, to teach, and to create opportunities for aspiring flutists is nothing short of astonishing.
Samantha released her debut album “Flute Sketches” in March 2009, and subsequently toured Canada, the UK, China, and Taiwan, wrapping up with a concert in Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall, New York. In April 2011, Ms. Chang drew a full house to Koerner Hall, celebrating the release of her second album “Sentimentale.” Samantha is conductor of the Ontario Cross-Cultural Music Society Symphony Orchestra (OCMS-SO) and assistant conductor of the Chinese Artists Society of Toronto Youth Orchestra (CASTYO).
Along with her performance schedule, Samantha is committed to several arts organizations devoted to furthering young talent and fundraisers for charities in the community. In 2009, she created Samantha Chang Productions Inc., a company dedicated to promoting music development and education in Canada. Samantha frequently visits schools as workshop instructor for young flute students, and as the executive director of the Canadian Flute Association, she coordinated the first two Canadian Flute Conventions in 2013 and 2015.
Samantha Chang is a Fellow of the Trinity College London and a Fellow of the London College of Music. She received her Postgraduate Diploma and Licentiate at the Royal Academy of Music in London (England) and Associate performance and teaching diplomas from the Royal Conservatory of Toronto (Canada). She is currently a research assistant and PhD student in the Department of History of Art at the University of Toronto where she holds a Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship (CGS) Doctoral Award, a Faculty of Arts and Science Top (FAST) Doctoral Fellowship, and a Mary H. Beatty Fellowship. Her research explores the conceptual relationships between visual arts and music in the early modern period, specifically those of artistic identity, temporality, synesthesia, and performativity. In her spare time, Samantha enjoys reading, following the World Cup, and speaks English, French, Mandarin, understands Taiwanese, and “mumbles through Latin, Italian, German, Dutch, Cantonese, and Japanese.”
Samantha Chang performs on a Muramatsu Platinum Clad Flute, DN Model Flute, and Alto Flute

Check out a video of Samantha below!