Mark Weems is a thoroughly diverse multi-instrumentalist and singer who plays guitar, banjo, fiddle, and mountain dulcimer, but is also well known as a singer and composer. He has been studying the nuances of all types of country and folk music for twenty-five years as a veteran of The Stillhouse Bottom Band, Little Windows, The Cave Dwellers, and The Old Jonny Booker Band.
Sing Out! Magazine called him “an exceptionally talented interpreter of old-time vocal and instrumental tunes” and “a gifted composer of timeless music.” His music has been heard on-stage at Merlefest, highlighted on the NPR programs Thistle and Shamrock and The State of Things, and is frequently heard on WUNC’s Back Porch Music.
He currently tours professionally with his wife, Julee Glaub, as the duet Little Windows. He has taught master classes at the Irish Arts Week in New York, at the Swannanoa Gathering in North Carolina, and at the Alaska Traditional Music Camp, among others.
Samuel Howell is a lifelong Suzuki student and teacher with a decade of teaching experience. He has been privileged to study with a number of exceptional artists and educators including Chris Nunnally (ECU, Juilliard) Sharon Lawrence (Hampton Sidney) John Kaboff (Kaboff cello school, Arlington, VA) Dr Aurelius Gori (NOVA, Gori Voice Studios, Kensington MD) Dr Mark Whitmire (NOVA; St James's, Richmond, VA) and Pamela Devenport (Suzuki Association of the Americas).
Sam takes a holistic approach to music education. He understands music to be intrinsically physical and social as well as artistic. His pedagogical approach places a strong emphasis on healthy, relaxed physical technique applying principles of the Feldenkrais method. His greatest aspiration as an educator is to inspire the artistic awareness in the community through comprehensive musical education and performances that are both illuminating and accessible to local audiences. Sam holds an Associates of Applied Arts in Vocal Performance from Northern Virginia Community College and is a member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas.
For more information, contact Sam at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Toni Howell traces her love of music and theater to the influences of growing up in a culturally sensitive area, between New York City and Philadelphia, where there was a strong emphasis on the arts. She received her B.A. in Communications and Theater Arts from Susquehanna University in Pennsylvania where she studied voice, specifically opera, with James Wilhelm (City Opera of New York and New York Metropolitan Opera).
Toni has directed opera, as well as acted in and directed many plays, sang lead musical comedy roles in summer theater, and spent a short period with Lamb's Players of San Diego. She taught all subjects to 7th and 8th graders and music to K through 8. She has been teaching voice and piano for 20 years, most recently taking the training and becoming registered as a Suzuki teacher. She founded and directed the Storysingers, a music club in Halifax County, as well as directed various choirs and ensembles.
Toni home-schooled 5 children, now grown, who are all excellent musicians, all Suzuki-trained. She practices Suzuki's methods in teaching children and adults because she has found that her students progress more rapidly with it and gain a solid, disciplined technique, but she also recognizes the value of the traditional method with its emphasis on reading and incorporates that emphasis in her program as well. She teaches all styles of singing, but personally loves singing musical comedy, opera, and classic folk. Disciplined performance is a major goal; truth in communicating is another.
For more information, contact Toni at email@example.com.