Karrie Been

Karrie Been, who teaches the Primo singers, graduated from Carroll College (University) with a Bachelor of Science degree in music education and earned her Master of Music degree in music education with a Kodaly emphasis from Silver Lake College. She is currently the general and vocal music instructor at Woodland and Mapleview Intermediate Schools in Kimberly, where she also serves as curriculum coordinator for the district’s general and choral music staff.  Previously, Been taught in Franklin, Wisconsin, where she taught elementary music, middle and high school choirs, and worked as the orchestra conductor for the high school’s musical theatre productions.  She was the founding chair of the Association of Wisconsin Area Kodaly Educators (AWAKE) Children’s Choir Festival and served on the Wisconsin Choral Directors Association choir festival committee. She is a member of the Wisconsin School Music Association, American Choral Director’s Association and Music Educator’s National Conference.  She has served Lawrence University’s Conservatory of Music and St. Norbert College, working as cooperating teacher and practicum adviser. Been and her husband both sing with newVoices, formerly the White Heron Chorale.

Karen Bruno

Karen L. Bruno  teaches the Bel Canto singers and is the artistic director of the Girl Choir program.  She received the Bachelor of Arts degree from Smith College, a teaching certificate from Lawrence University's Conservatory of Music, and the Master of Music degree in music education from Boston University. She has taught choral music in the Appleton and Oshkosh school districts and at an international school in Senegal, West Africa. Bruno has been a guest speaker and adjunct professor in a variety of Lawrence Conservatory music education classes and has served as both cooperating and practicum teacher for students from Lawrence and St. Norbert College.  She currently serves as director of the Lawrence Academy of Music.

Bruno has conducted the South Dakota All-State Children's Choir, numerous regional honor choirs, and is a past staff member of the Wisconsin School Music Association's Treble Honor Choir.  She served for six years as the repertoire and standards chair for Children and Community Youth Choirs in the North Central Division of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), is a member of the VoiceCare Network, and serves on the committee advocating the Comprehensive Musicianship through Performance (CMP) method of teaching. 

Bruno is a two-time recipient of WCDA's Five-Star Award, a recipient of Lawrence University's Pi Kappa Lambda award for excellence in music education, is a Rotary Scholarship Award winner, and was recognized by the Danbury (CT) Music Centre for providing outstanding musical opportunities for youth in the United States.  Under her tutelage, Bel Canto was awarded Second Place in the national American Prize competition and has performed, by invitation, on state and divisional conventions of choral conductors. 

Amber Evey Schmidt

Amber Evey Schmidt, who teaches Arioso singers, graduated from Lawrence University with a Bachelor of Music degree in choral and general music education and earned a Master of Music in music education from Northwestern University.  She worked as a student teacher in the Appleton Area School District and was awarded Lawrence University's Pi Kappa Lambda Award for excellence in Music Education.  While at Lawrence, Evey Schmidt performed with the Women's Choir, Concert Choir and Vocal Jazz Ensemble.  She has been actively involved in the Girl Choir program for many years; she was the manager for Intermezzo for four years and served as a conducting intern for Cantabile for one year.  Evey Schmidt has taught elementary general music in Mequon, Kiel, and Appleton; middle school choir and general music in Appleton; and now teaches choral music at Appleton North High School where she directs four ensembles.  She is a member of the VoiceCare Network, the Wisconsin Music Educators Association (WMEA) and the Wisconsin Choral Directors Association (WCDA), chairing its All-State Children's Choir in 2006. Evey Schmidt has also taught music theory, guitar, and voice during the Academy of Music's residential summer band camp.

Jaclyn Kottman

Jaclyn Kottman, who teaches Capriccio singers, previously served as an ensemble manager and conducting intern with the Intermezzo, Cantabile, and Bel Canto choirs.  Kottman graduated from Lawrence University with a Bachelor of Music degree in Choral and General Music Education and a minor in Religious Studies. She has taught in New Zealand, Costa Rica, Appleton, and Boston. She is currently teaching choral, general, and exploratory Music in the Appleton Area School District at Einstein Middle School and Classical Charter School, and also teaches voice through the Lawrence Academy of Music. Kottman is a member of the Wisconsin Music Educators Association (WMEA), the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), the Sigma Alpha Iota music fraternity, and is the recipient of Lawrence University’s Pi Kappa Lambda Award for excellence in music education.

Debbie Lind

Debbie Lind, who teaches Cantabile singers, is a graduate of the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, with a Bachelor of Music Education degree, vocal and instrumental. In June, 2011, she retired from 25 years of teaching vocal and choral music in the Appleton Area School District, having served most recently as choral music director at Appleton East High School. She taught in Omaha, NE, and Schofield, WI, before coming to Appleton. Lind has been a clinician for the Wisconsin School Music Association and a guest conductor for WCDA’s Singing in Wisconsin. She has been actively involved in church music as a choral director, accompanist and singer throughout her career. She is a member of the Voicecare Network, Wisconsin Music Educators Association (WMEA) and the Wisconsin Choral Directors Association (WCDA). Lind has worked and continues to work with future and new music educators as a cooperating teacher, a practicum advisor, and a mentor for the AASD new-teacher mentoring program.

Patricia Merrifield

Patricia Merrifield, who teaches the Ragazze singers, teaches elementary general music in the Appleton Area School District and serves Lawrence University's Conservatory frequently as a cooperating teacher. She is currently co-teaching a Lawrence class in recorder and guitar methods for music education majors.  Merrifield holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Michigan State University and teaching certification and Master’s Degree in Music Education with a Kodaly emphasis from Silver Lake College. Before entering the field of teaching, she worked in orchestra management for the Phoenix and Fairfax (VA) Symphony Orchestras. Merrifield is a past Board member of the Association of Wisconsin Area Kodaly Educators (AWAKE), has co-chaired the AWAKE Singing Games Festival, and is a member of the Wisconsin School Music Association and Music Educator’s National Conference.

Cheryl Meyer

Cheryl Meyer, who teaches Allegretto singers, received her Bachelor of Music degree from UW-Madison and joined the Academy in 1992 as a conductor in the Girl Choir Program.  A vocal music specialist with the Appleton Area School District, Meyer is an advocate for the Comprehensive Musicianship through Performance (CMP) method of teaching.  She is a frequent cooperating teacher and practicum teacher for Lawrence Conservatory students and is currently co-teaching a class in recorder and guitar methods for music education majors.  As a member of the Wisconsin Choral Directors Association (WCDA), she has conducted Singing in Wisconsin Youth Choirs, presented sessions and choirs at state conventions and served as Children’s Choir Repertoire and Standards Chair.  She is also a member of the Wisconsin Music Educators Conference (WMEA) and the Organization of Kodaly Educators, serving as a past conductor of the AWAKE Youth Honor Choir. Currently an adjudicator for the Wisconsin School Music Association, Meyer also conducts the Camp Choir during the Academy of Music's residential summer band camp.

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