David Hattner, Musical Director
David Hattner is the fifth Musical Director of the Portland Youth Philharmonic. Mr. Hattner was selected from a pool of 112 candidates by a search committee comprised of board members, alumni, community representatives, musicians, and teachers. He received positive reviews from both audiences and critics alike after his debut with PYP in November 2008. "The Portland Youth Philharmonic roared like a Maserati on Saturday in its first concert under music director David Hattner. The route was challenging, the execution distinguished and the ride delightful," wrote David Stabler for The Oregonian.
"David is ideal for PYP. He creates the musical and social environment in which young musicians can and want to do their best," said Murry Sidlin, former Resident Conductor of the Oregon Symphony, who worked with Mr. Hattner at the Aspen Music Festival and the Cascade Festival of Music. "He is a brilliant clarinetist, has very high artistic vision, and invites young musicians to join him at that level. He worked ferociously to become the excellent conductor he is. Nobody handed him anything. He worked for it and succeeded. PYP is tremendously fortunate to have persuaded David to join them."
David Hattner's conducting credits include the Eugene Symphony Orchestra, Oklahoma Chamber Ensemble, the Garden State Philharmonic Orchestra, Camerata Atlantica, and multi-media work with silent film in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, Portland, and Sao Paulo, Brazil. "David Hattner conducted a calmly authoritative performance . . . " wrote Anthony Tommasini in the New York Times, reviewing a performance of Richard Einhorn's Voices of Light. He has also guest conducted the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra, Ensemble Sospeso, International Contemporary Ensemble, Brooklyn Symphony Orchestra, and the Massapequa Philharmonic Orchestra. Hattner received a Bachelor of Music degree with honors from Northwestern University, where he was a clarinet student of Robert Marcellus. He has participated in the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen three times, where he studied with David Zinman and Murry Sidlin. He has also held Principal Clarinet positions with Princeton Symphony Orchestra, Cascade Music Festival Orchestra, New Jersey Opera Theater, and Key West Symphony Orchestra.
Phone: Extension 106
Lawrence Johnson, Conservatory Orchestra Conductor
Mr. Johnson received his bachelor of music from the University of Puget Sound and his masters in music from the Cleveland Institute of Music. He conducted and directed wind ensemble, band and orchestra at PSU and Mount Hood Community College. He has taught at Clackamas Community College and Lewis and Clark College. He is formerly principal horn of Germany’s Philharmonia Hungarica, was assistant principal horn with the Oregon Symphony (1996–2005), and has been a regular member of the Seattle Opera’s Wagner Ring Cycle Orchestra since 1976. He has performed with other orchestras throughout the Pacific Northwest, numerous chamber music groups and summer music festivals.
Dave Matthys, Wind Ensemble Conductor
Dave Matthys is a well-known band director in the Pacific Northwest with 35 years of experience in music education. His bands have garnered many awards and accolades over the years. Mr. Matthys was the first recipient of the Mary V. Dodge Award for Outstanding Music Program (2008), and most recently was selected as the 2014-2015 National Federation of High Schools Outstanding Music Educator for Oregon. He then was selected as Outstanding Music Educator for the Western United States.
Mr. Matthys has served on boards for the Oregon Music Educators Association, Oregon School Activities Association, and Portland Rose Festival, and served as president of the Oregon Band Directors Association. In demand as a multi-state clinician and adjudicator, he also has presented many different sessions and performed (Lake Oswego High School Wind Ensemble) at multiple state music conferences. In addition to conducting the Portland Youth Wind Ensemble, he also works as a university supervisor for Portland State University, where he works with student teachers in music.
Inés Voglar Belgique, Young String Ensemble Conductor
Violinist Inés Voglar Belgique was born to a Slovenian family in Venezuela, where she studied music under the program "El Sistema” and violin with Roberto Valdes. She came to the United States in 1996 to complete her undergraduate and graduate studies from Duquesne University and Carnegie Mellon University with then-Concertmaster of the Pittsburgh Symphony Andrés Cárdenes. Before joining the Oregon Symphony in 2004, she played two seasons with the Pittsburgh Symphony as an extra musician, including national and European tours. Other orchestral distinctions include having been Guest Concertmaster of the Galicia Symphony Orchestra in December 2007 and being a frequent Concertmaster of the Astoria Music Festival Orchestra. In September of 2012, Inés won the position of Assistant Principal Second Violin with the Oregon Symphony in a national audition. An avid chamber musician, Ms. Voglar Belgique has been a violinist in FearNoMusic for nine years and served as artistic Director from 2005-11, reaching out to collaborate with internationally acclaimed composers and presenting the music of Oregon and the Pacific Northwest. In addition to private studio teaching, she is a faculty member at the Interlochen Adult Chamber Music Camp, the Oregon State University Chamber Music Workshop and Portland Summer Ensembles. As well as her appointment as conductor of the Young String Ensemble of The Portland Youth Philharmonic, Ms Voglar Belgique will join the faculty of Lewis and Clark college in the fall of 2015.
Ann Cockerham, Operations Manager & Music Librarian
Mrs. Cockerham was a music teacher for grades Kindergarten through 10 from 1995-2000. She has continued to stay involved with music for young people by starting a vocal choir and a handbell choir at her church. She joined the PYP team in 2001. Contact her about any orchestra related matters such as attendance, auditions and instrumental rental. She is also responsible for organizing and distributing the musical repertoire for all 3 orchestras, and maintaining the PYP's music library.
Phone: Extension 102
Kevin Allen, Operations Assistant
Kevin Allen received his Bachelor's degree in Music Education from Portland State University. He first became involved with the organization in Fall of 2007 where he joined both the Portland Youth Philharmonic and the Portland Youth Wind Ensemble on trombone. He later became part of the Theory Staff and taught theory for YSE, PYWE, and PYCO. He joined the office staff in June 2011. His duties include Peer Mentorship, Children's Concerts, and he helps run both PYCO and PYWE.
Phone: Extension 105
Carolyn Talarr, Outreach Coordinator
Carolyn Talarr grew up in suburban Maryland, where she studied piano with the late Ylda Novik, in whose studio she first experienced the true power of a learning community, and later with Thomas Schumacher. Although she left the study of music, it never left her heart as she earned a BA magna cum laude in English/Dramatic Literature from Brown University, an M.F.A. with distinction in Dramaturgy from Yale Drama School, and did her doctoral work as a Dean's Fellow in Education, Culture and Society at the University of Pennsylvania. She has published and edited in multiple fields, and has successfully grown programs in areas as diverse as university-level production dramaturgy and adult basic literacy.
Carolyn and her bicycle-loving family moved to Beaverton, Oregon in 2003; her daughter Anna joined her first PYP ensemble in 2010. In 2012, in the face of looming school funding cuts, PYP committed to support school music education by initiating the Conductor Visit program, free in-school visits to middle and high school bands and orchestras in the region by PYP's conductors. Carolyn has happily coordinated the program and helped it grow since its inception, as it combines two of her passionate commitments: building supportive, dynamic community and facilitating equitable access to high quality music education for all.
Kiri Murakami-Loehmann, Executive Director
Kiri Murakami-Loehmann has spent the last dozen years working at arts organizations in different capacities, including as an administrator, board member, violinist, and teacher.
Her passion for music began at age three when she started learning the violin and piano. She has garnered many accolades, including first prize in The Juilliard School violin competition, recognition from the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts, and orchestral pieces commissioned by the Gemini Youth Orchestra (NY) and the Youth Orchestra of Central Jersey (NJ). She attended the Aspen Music Festival for six summers and served as concertmaster of the New York Youth Symphony, performing at Carnegie Hall.
Ms. Murakami-Loehmann was an audio engineering assistant for concert venues before graduating with high honors from Princeton University in music theory/composition, Japanese, and environmental studies. She worked in the education department at the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra before joining the Princeton Symphony Orchestra where she served as General Manager and Artistic Administrator. In her spare time, she serves on the board of a non-profit organization, Music for Autism, based in New York City.
Phone: Extension 109
Kristan Knapp grew up in small towns of Central and Southeast Washington studying piano, singing in choirs and playing flute in bands. She first fell in love with the Portland Junior Symphony when her family moved to Portland while she was in high school. Kristan graduated from Oberlin College with a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and returned to the Pacific Northwest at the height of the women’s movement. She co-founded a women’s choir and small ensemble that embraced music making as cultural work supporting social change. From 1984-1996 Kristan toured as flutist with the Musica Femina Flute-Guitar Duo, introducing audiences to classical and contemporary women composers. Musica Femina recorded two cds and performed at national festivals, on college campuses, and in coffeehouses coast to coast. To support her touring habit, Kristan worked seasonally for Portland Parks & Recreation, producing free concerts in parks from 1980 to 2010. She also worked for several social service agencies as Development Director, and most recently was Retail and Volunteer Manager at Oregon Ballet Theatre. Contact Kristan with your ideas for fundraising, and capturing PYP’s history for a 100th anniversary celebration.
Phone: Extension 112
Bev Backa, Finance Manager
Bev Backa originally began a professional career as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist; serving as the clinical director of The Holman Group, a HMO style mental health organization in Nevada. Following a family move to Oregon in 1999, Bev served as a senior manager for several non-profits providing mental health and social services in the Portland area. They included Lifeworks NW, Boys and Girls Aid Society, and ChristieCare. In 2007, Bev left administration to continue her education in accounting and finance. She completed the Post-Baccalaureate Accounting program at PSU and sat for and passed the Oregon CPA exam. Following contract assignments with local CPA firms and non-profit organizations, Bev made her professional home with Jewish Family and Child Services from 2010-2015. Bev currently lives in Happy Valley with her husband and daughter.
Phone: Extension 103
Josh Espinoza, Marketing and Communications Coordinator
Josh Espinoza was born and raised in El Paso, Texas. In 2013, he graduated cum laude from the University of Texas at El Paso with a Bachelor of Arts in Organizational and Corporate Communication. As part of the Disney College Program, Josh interned as a cast member and Disney “VoluntEAR” for the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida, and has worked as a contributing editor for Livejournal in San Francisco, California. In 2015, Josh received his Master of Arts in Communication and Digital Media from the University of Texas at El Paso. While completing his master’s degree, he managed event production, media, promotions, and web presence for fourteen different sports as a Marketing Assistant for the University of Texas at El Paso’s Division I Athletic Department.
Josh is new to the Portland area and eager to get involved with local non-profits in the surrounding community. Please feel free to contact Josh with ideas for fundraising, events, and social media postings.
Phone: Extension 104
Emily Dolliver recently graduated with a master’s degree in cello performance from Arizona State University after completing a bachelor’s degree at The Boston Conservatory. Emily has been involved in music from an early age, starting with piano, then exploring the string family before finally settling down with the cello. In college, her love of music grew, expanding her interests especially to new music and teaching. While in school, Emily also found a place in arts administration, working in university relations, development, alumni relations, as well as events coordination. Contact her for CD and DVD orders, volunteer opportunities, changes in address or phone number, and general questions.
Phone: Extension 101