Corey Worley

Violin. Viola.

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Corey Worley is a recent graduate from Oberlin College and Conservatory where he holds a BM in Viola Performance and a BA in Psychology. Currently, he is pursuing a Masters in Viola Performance at Le Conservatoire de Paris (CNSMDP) in Paris, France in the class of Pierre-Henri Xuereb. Teaching all ages since high school, Corey has been a chamber music coach for Credo Chamber Music (Chicago), a sectional coach for Northern Ohio Youth Orchestra, and conducted research on the History or French Viola Pedagogy at France's national library. Corey has performed throughout North America and Europe including recent performances with the International Contemporary Ensemble, members of Ensemble Intercontemporain, and was a featured performer at the Kennedy Center with his ensemble "Trio Ligatura." With a background in performance psychology, he has studied with Dr. Noa Kageyama (Juilliard's "Bulletproof Musician") and Dr. Jeffrey Huber (former US Olympic diving coach and IU performance psychologist). Corey believes in combining string pedagogical traditions with his research in performance psychology to not only develop reliable, healthy technique, but also teach students scientifically proven methods that aid in skill acquisition and developing a positive relationship with performance anxiety. 

  • Fellow with the Lucerne Music Festival Academy, Conservatoire Américain de Fontainebleau, National Centre for the Arts Young Artist Program
  • Performances at Bang on a Can 30th Anniversary Concert, Madison New Music Festival, Ojai Music Festival, and Kennedy Center
  • Winner of XARTs grant, Taymor Fund Grant, and 4 Grand Prizes awarded by Conservatoire Américain de Fontainebleau
  • Member of Collaborative Arts Ensemble, New York City
  • Student of Peter Slowik and Elias Goldstein with masterclasses led by Heidi Castleman (Juilliard), Jean Sulem (Paris Conservatoire), and Juilliard, Emerson, Ebène, quartets
  • Phi Beta Kappa Society Member

Birsa Chatterjee



Birsa Chatterjee is currently a third year jazz performance student at Oberlin Conservatory of Music. He was a part of the nationally recognized and award winning jazz education programs such as Jazz House Kids and Jazz at Lincoln Center. Birsa has played in Carnegie Hall, the Blue Note Jazz Club, Dizzy's Club Coca Cola, NJPAC and in countries like Peru and India aside from the United States. He has had the opportunity to share the stage with some of the jazz greats like Christian McBride, McCoy Tyner, Roy Hanes, Wynton Marsalis, Kenny Barron, and Jimmy Heath to name a few. Birsa is currently under the mentorship of saxophone legend Gary Bartz.

Olivia Cosio

Classical Voice. Musical Theater.


Hailed as a “formidable talent" (San Francisco Classical Voice) and someone who “understands music’s power to transcend” (Beyond the Concert Hall), mezzo-soprano Olivia Cosio has been recognized for her diverse abilities in both concert and opera repertoire. She is currently earning her Master’s degree in Vocal Arts from The Juilliard School, where she studies with Sanford Sylvan. Recent engagements include her work as a Vocal Fellow with the Tanglewood Music Center, where she performed Susie in Bernstein’s A Quiet Place, sang in the world-premiere of Michael Gandolfi’s In America, and worked with world-renowned artists such as Dawn Upshaw, Stephanie Blythe, Margo Garrett, and John Harbison.

In May of 2018, Olivia completed her Bachelor of Music degree from the Oberlin Conservatory, where she performed three fully-staged operatic roles, went on tour with the Oberlin Sinfonietta to the Bang on a Can Festival in Brooklyn, and sang in masterclasses for esteemed artists such as Marilyn Horne. Olivia has been heard on NPR's "From the Top," featured twice in San Francisco Classical Voice Magazine, and is a recipient of several awards including the Avanti Award and Jack Kent Cooke Award. She holds prizes from competitions such as YoungArts and the Hal Leonard Vocal Competition.

She is a former Teaching Fellow at Breakthrough San Francisco, a national non-profit that provides educational resources and instruction to underserved students. She taught music, 7th-grade writing, and 6th-grade literature in 2015 and 2016. She believes in developing the right approach for each of her music students, with healthy singing being the focus of any genre.

  • Attending the Juilliard School for a Master's in Vocal Arts

  • Mezzo-soprano fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center

  • Performance/Interview on NPR's "From the Top"

  • Featured in "San Francisco Classical Voice Magazine

  • Teaching Fellow at Breakthrough San Francisco (Music, 6th grade literature, 7th grade writing).

Ben Cruz



Ben Cruz is a guitarist, composer, and educator based in Chicago, IL. His music draws from a variety of traditions, combining forward-thinking composition with an emphasis on improvisation. Ben began playing guitar at the age of twelve, and studied jazz and improvisation from New York City-based guitarist Vic Juris. Ben went on study history and jazz performance at Oberlin College and Conservatory, where he was mentored by Bobby Ferrazza, Dan Wall, Jamey Haddad, Jay Ashby, Paul Samuels, Billy Hart, and Brian Alegant.  Ben has performed with Gerald Clayton, Billy Drewes, Phil Markowitz, Billy Childs, Vijay Iyer, Anat Cohen, Dominick Farinacci, and Petros Klampanis, among others.

Hesper Xu

Classical Piano.


Nuo (Hesper) Xu is a fourth-year Piano Performance major at Oberlin Conservatory, currently studying with Mr. Robert Shannon. She will go on to attend Manhattan School of Music for her Master’s in Piano this fall. She has also attended various summer music festivals and competitions, Macao piano competition, Cooper Piano Festival, Ithaca Music Festival, and Brevard Music Festival where she studied with Michael Chertok who serves as a chair of the keyboard division of University of Cincinnati. As a performer, Hesper has played between many cities in China. Hesper has also played at Florence Congregational Church in Ohio as an organist and pianist.

•    BM, Oberlin Conservatory of Music, 2018

•    Attending Manhattan School of Music for a Master’s in Piano Performance

•    Masterclasses with James Giles, Michale Chertok

•    Winner of Macao Piano Competition 2013

•    Organist at Florence Congregational Church in Ohio (2017-2018)

Benjamin Steger

Classical Trumpet. Jazz Trumpet.



Hi, I'm Ben! I am a fourth year Biochemistry and Trumpet performance major at Oberlin. I have been teaching jazz and classical lessons for 7 years and have worked with many music education foundations. I am currently studying with Eddie Henderson (who took lessons with Louis Armstrong and Miles Davis) and Roy Poper, one of the top trumpet players in the country (he played on the Jurassic Park movies and in the LA Chamber Orchestra). I'm excited to pass on everything I have learned from them! 

  • President of the Music Mentor program at Oberlin
  • Intern at St. Louis Symphony education department
  • Intern at Jazz St. Louis education department
  • Member of the NAfME all-national jazz ensemble
  • Member of the St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra
  • Founder of Virtu.Academy

Salam Karahawa

Violin. Viola.

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A longtime student of Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory’s professors AliMukhtar Papaiev and Eliana Golikova, Salam Karahawa is a fourth-year student at Oberlin College and Conservatory. He is pursuing degrees in viola performance and politics while minoring in economics. A passionate educator utilizing scientifically proven methods for preventing injuries, Salam has worked with students between 5-24 years of age for more than eight years. Working on using body muscles most efficiently to avoid injuries, Salam has worked with Curtis Institute of Music faculty Pamela Frank and her husband physical therapist Howard Nelson on learning the dynamics involved in fluent and healthy body movement while performing. He has taken classes in and conducted research on Body Mapping and Kinesthetic Awareness with Oberlin professors Deborah Vogal and Kelly Wilson. His performances as a soloist, chamber musician, and an orchestra musician had spread from Yekaterinburg, Russia and Marseille, France to Beirut, Lebanon. Salam’s philosophy in teaching relies heavily on Body Mapping and Kinesthetic Awareness principles as well as on constructing a robust technique where almost all body parts are engaged in creating a natural and sustainable practicing and performance habits that would lead to tangible results in both the short and long terms.

  • Current student of Peter Slowik with masterclasses with Marc Thayer, John McGrosso (Ariana String Quartet), Jooyeon Kong (Saint Louis Symphony), and Vitalii Pervishyn (Qatar Symphony Orchestra).

  • Activity coordinator and sectional coach for Northern Ohio Youth Orchestra (summer 2016).

  • Member of the Saint Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra (2015-2016)

  • Fellow in American Voices string summer programs in both Syria and Lebanon (2010-2014).

  • Ambassador and student liaison for American Voices organization.

  • Concertmaster of the Syrian Youth Orchestra (2009-2012).

Lauren Anker

French Horn.

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Lauren is a current fourth year at Oberlin pursuing degrees in Horn Performance and History. She has attended various summer music festivals including Interlochen Arts Camp, Boston University Tanglewood Institute, NSO Summer Music Festival, and Aspen Music Festival. She has been the secondary lessons teacher at Oberlin for two years, and also has taught area high school students for the past year. She believes in establishing a strong and well-rounded foundation in fundamentals accompanied by a healthy amount of repertoire for young brass players. 


  • Virginia district, regional, and All State band and orchestra 
  • Past and current teachers include Prof. Roland Pandolfi, James Nickel, Andrew Bain, David Wakefield
  • Masterclasses with Martin Hackleman, Denise Tryon, and Jeff Nelson
  • Performances with Oberlin orchestras, contemporary ensembles, and the Wilder Brass Quintet

Matthew Payne

Classical Voice. Musical Theater.


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Matthew Payne is a rising 5th year at Oberlin Conservatory and College. This summer, Matthew was delighted to perform in three solo concerts at the Chautauqua Institution. Recently, Matthew performed in concerts with singers and pianists from institutions such as the Metropolitan Opera, Julliard School of Music and the Curtis Institute of Music.

Matthew has performed in numerous operas and musical theater shows. Most recently, he was seen in Cleveland Opera’s production of Moniuszko’sStraszny dwór and as Mr. Gobineau in Oberlin Opera Theater’s production of Menotti’s The Medium. In the fall, Matthew will be singing in Oberlin Opera Theater’s Bernstein Review and in Oberlin Musical Theater Association’s production of Cabaret. Matthew has also performed as a solo recitalist with the Society for New Music and as a concert singer with the Oberlin Cantata Project and Oberlin Baroque.


  • Artist at the Chautauqua Institute of Voice
  • Experienced Teacher of the Bel Canto Method
  • Master Classes with Gerald Finley and Steven Osgood
  • Named “an outstanding aria and recitative soloist” from Cleveland classical
  • Featured on

Max Reese

Classical Clarinet.

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Hi! I'm Max, a second-year clarinet performance major at Oberlin. I am currently working as a substitute teacher with Play on Philly! I have studied with Charles Salinger, principal clarinet of the Delaware Symphony, Delaware Opera, and Pennsylvania Ballet Orchestra, and currently study with Richard Hawkins, whose students have gone on to be in orchestras such as the LA Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, and Detroit Symphony.                              

Kelsey Burnham

Classical Flute.

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Hey! My name is Kelsey Burnham. I'm currently a fourth year at Oberlin Conservatory studying flute, both classical and historical performance. I'm entering my 10th year of playing and have been very fortunate to be a part of many wonderful ensembles and perform in various places such as Montreal, New York, Philadelphia, D.C., and, my home, Baltimore. An alum of Baltimore School for the Arts and the Peabody Preparatory Tuned-In program, I spent my time in high school teaching elementary and middle school aged flutists through the Baltimore Symphony Orchkids Program. 

I feel comfortable teaching students of any age or skill level, and find teaching to be very exciting and a learning experience for both the student and me. I look forward to teaching you!


  • Teacher for Baltimore Symphony Orchkids Program
  • Performances in Montreal, New York, Philadelphia, and D.C.

Andrew Ennis

Classical Trombone

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Andrew is currently a fourth year Trombone Performance major at Oberlin Conservatory studying under Lee Allen. With 10 years of experience playing euphonium as well as trombone, Andrew is well versed in the pedagogy of all low brass instruments. As an alum of the Interlochen Arts Academy and current student at Oberlin, he has been fortunate enough to learn from some of the most elite members of today’s low brass world and is excited to continue spreading this knowledge to the next generation of low brass players.


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