Our Instructors

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Eleonora Fishman- Owner

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Eleonora Fishman holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in piano performance and pedagogy. She has been an active performer, accompanist, adjudicator, and teacher since 2003. She is a co-owner of Kramer’s School of Music in Eden Prairie and Plymouth, Minnesota.

Mrs. Fishman began playing piano and violin at the age of five in her hometown of Yevpatoriya, Russia. At the age of six, she was enrolled into the Music School for gifted children. At the age of nine Mrs. Fishman won the Crimean Piano Competition. At the age of eleven, she placed second at the Crimean Violin Competition.

In 1998 Mrs. Fishman immigrated to the United States. She continued her piano studies at the McPhail Center for Music in Minneapolis under the guidance of Yakov Gelfand. During her studies, she has been a regular recipient of music scholarships and prizes at piano competitions.

In 2007, Mrs. Fishman graduated from the University of Minnesota, where she studied with Professor Braginsky under the full scholarship. In 2008, she was enrolled into University of St. Thomas to study Piano Pedagogy under the guidance of Prof. Vanessa Cornett.

For over fifteen years Mrs. Fishman has taught hundreds of students of all ages and levels. Her students are the recipients of numerous awards and regularly receive the highest ratings in competitions and exams. She is an active member of Minnesota Music Teacher’s Association, Minnesota Music Teacher’s Forum, and St. Paul Music Teacher’s Association.


Elena Kramer – Owner

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Elena received her Bachelor’s degree in Piano Performance from Kharkov Conservatory of Music, and her Master’s degree in Piano Pedagogy/Performance from Melitopol Institute of Music in Ukraine. For the past 30 years, she has been teaching students in Ukraine and in the United States. She is the co-owner of Kramer’s School of Music in Eden Prairie, MN. Elena is a co-founder of the North Star Piano Festival Duet and Concerto Competition. Elena’s teaching and professional affiliations: Minnesota Music Teachers Association (MMTA), Music Nation Teachers Association (MTNA), Minnesota Music Teachers Forum (MMTF), American College of Musicians, St Paul Music Teachers Association (SPPTA)


Dr. Larissa Simanenkova

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Dr. Larissa Simanenkova is a Piano Teacher and Piano Performer with over 41 years of Experience. Larissa is a 1st Place Winner of College Young Artist Competition of Russian Federation. She holds her BA degree with Honor in Piano Performance and Piano Pedagogy, Master degree with Honors in Piano Performance, Collaborative Piano Performance and Piano Pedagogy, and a Doctorate in Piano Performance from a very prestigious St. Petersburg Conservatory of Music of Russia.

Larissa is a former professor of Petrozavodsk Conservatory of Russia (for 20 years), a Master Teacher of Jan Erickson Music Studios, Eden Prairie, MN ( from 1995 – 2009 ) and an independent piano teacher (from 1993 — Current). She served as a Program Director and Co- Chair of MMTA Young Artist Competition for 3 years (2006 – 2009 ). Larissa’s students have been winners of MMTA Piano State Contests, MMTA Young Artist Piano Competitions, MMTF 9th Grade Award Auditions, MMTF Senior Music Award Auditions, Piano Fun Competition and Upper Midwest Music Festivals. Larissa joined Kramer’s School of Music in February 2015.


Yaroslava Leonova

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Yaroslava Leonova graduated from Academy of Music, Theater, and Fine Arts in Chisinau, Moldova with a Bachelor’s Degree in June, 2006. She worked as piano accompanist playing with wide variety of students, singers, string instruments, and actors. At the same time, she offered private piano lessons for students of all ages. Yaroslava worked at various music schools in the Minneapolis area, preparing students as young as 5 years old for recitals, concerts and exams. She is a professional, engaging and hard-working pianist focused on students’ progress in learning the piano. Along with private piano instruction, Yaroslava teaches group music theory, helping students develop musical skills such as notation, ear training and rhythm. Yaroslava joined Kramer’s School of Music in March 2015. She teaches piano and music theory.


Galina Shatskaya

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Galina Shatskaya is a member of the Minnesota Music Teachers Association and Music Teachers National Association. She offers more than 30 years of piano teaching experience and adheres to the highest standards of professionalism. Mrs. Shatskaya holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Piano Pedagogy from the Rimsky-Korsakov Musical College and Master of Arts Degree in Pedagogy from the Mogilev State University in Belarus. She is also the author of the ‘Developing Proper Piano Playing Technique’ teaching aid recommended for use at musical schools in Belarus.

Mrs. Shatskaya spent a big part of her career in her hometown of Mogilev, Belarus, where she taught piano and headed the Piano Department at a musical school. From 1998 – 2015 Mrs. Shatskaya owned and operated a successful piano studio in Omaha, NE. Her students have participated in numerous competitions and festivals with outstanding results.

A firm believer in traditional piano teaching methods, Mrs. Shatskaya strives to maintain a diverse and comprehensive student body by accommodating various musical interests and abilities. Her own musical preferences are broad, ranging from classical to jazz and rock. She will be joining Kramer’s School of Music in June 2015!


Galina Ikhareva Piano

Galina Ikhareva

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Galina was born in Leningrad (St. Petersburg) into a family of pianists and artists. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Rimsky-Korsakov College of Music in the areas of Solo Performance, Chamber Music, and Piano Pedagogy. Her Masters of Music was earned at the Leningrad Conservatory of Music in Solo and Chamber Ensemble Piano performance, Accompanying, and Piano Pedagogy. After graduation she worked as an accompanist and piano pedagogy instructor at the Leningrad Conservatory and as a piano instructor at the College of Music Pedagogy in Leningrad. After a decade of teaching in Russia, she emigrated to the United States in 1989 where she has been continuously active as a private teacher and professional accompanist. She has held positions at St. Paul Academy, Nova Classical Academy Yamaha School of Music, St. Joseph’s School of Music, and the University of Minnesota. Concert performances include the Schubert Club, St. Joseph School of Music, University of Minnesota, as well as performances in Europe. Her professional memberships are in the Minnesota Music Teachers Association, the Music Teachers National Association, the Minnesota Music Teachers Forum, and the St, Paul Piano Teachers Association. Among her students are numerous winners of MMTA competitions, Upper Midwest Piano Festival, Around the Piano Festival , and the Schubert Club. Galina joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2018.


Margarita Dorfman

Margarita Dorfman

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Margarita was born and raised in Almaty, Kazakhstan. During her school years and throughout college, she became a winner in many piano contests. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Tchaikovsky College of Music in Piano Performance, Pedagogy, and Collaborative Music. She received her Master Degree from the Kazakhstan National Conservatory of Music in Piano Performance, Pedagogy, and Piano Accompaniment.
Margarita was a former piano teacher and accompanist in the music school and Conservatory of Music in Kazakhstan for over 15 years. In 1992 she moved to the United States and has been a piano teacher in Jan Erickson Music Studios, Walker West Music Academy in St. Paul, and St. Louis Park JCC (1993-2013). Margarita has also been a worship accompanist in St. Luke Lutheran Church. She is also an Independent Piano teacher since 1996.
Margarita’s students have been winners of MMTA piano contests and BAMTA Music Clubs festivals. Some have received scholarships for continuing theory music education in different universities across the U.S.
Margarita joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2018 and is very excited to meet new hard working students who love music as much as she does.


Mark Hedman

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Mark Hedman was born in Philadelphia, PA, and educated at West Chester University, where he was the winner of the Junior year Piano Competition. He earned the B. S. in Music Education with a Vocal-Choral concentration, and a Master’s in Music in Piano Performance. Attracted by the musical and cultural scene, Mark moved to the Twin Cities. He is presently the Director of Music at Hope Evangelical Lutheran Church in Minneapolis. Mark has previously served in several churches as organist, pianist and choir director. He teaches at the after school music program at the Cyprus Academy in Burnsville, teaching classes in music composition and music theory. He has successfully prepared piano students for over 40 MMTA exams, all the way from the preparatory level to level 9. He has taught winners of the MMTA Piano Contest, and has entered students in the Thursday Musicals competition. One of his piano students was a finalist in the Northwestern Piano Festival. He has taught for the last 18 years at the Chaska Music Studios. Mark joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2015.


Kelly (Di) Wu

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Pianist Kelly (Di) Wu started her piano education at age 6, and has since performed throughout China, Canada, and US.  Ms. Wu has won numerous top prizes in many competitions including Macau International Competition for Young Musicians, the Associated Manitoba Arts Festivals (AMAF), Manitoba Provincial Music and Arts Festival, Brandon Festivals of the Arts to name a few.  She was the winner of the Brandon University Concerto Competition and performed Ravel piano concerto in G major under the baton of Dr. Leanne Zacharias. She is in the final stages of the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University of Minnesota under the tutelage of Dr. Kyung Kim, chair of Keyboard division. Ms. Wu received the Master of Music and Bachelor of Music degrees from Brandon University, Canada where she also studied under the tutelage of Professor Emeritus Dr. Lawrence Jones. 

She has also worked as an instructor for the Junior Rising Star Program at the Minnesota International Piano Camp, where she taught individual lessons and led performance classes. 


Jacob Sergeant - Piano

Jacob Sergeant

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Pianist Jacob Sergeant, a native of the Twin Cities, started playing at the age of two. In piano he has competed in various national and international competitions, and in music has volunteered for various groups and organizations, including the Minnesota Chorale, the University of Minnesota, and Mount Olivet Lutheran Church. He has a strong passion for teaching and sharing music with the community. He holds a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in Music from the University of Minnesota. Jacob joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2018.


Angela Drees

Angela Drees

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Angela Drees, a native of the Twin Cities, received her Bachelor degree in piano performance the University of St. Thomas. She has been playing piano since the age of 5 and took part in MMTA events and other local recitals through high school. Since then, she has accompanied musicians, played in chamber groups, and participated in a Concerto festival. Outside of classical music she enjoys taking part as a keyboardist in a progressive rock band She hopes as a teacher to spark a passion in playing and motivate a desire for challenge in students. Angela joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2017.


Amanda Godin

Amanda Godin

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Amanda began playing piano when she was three years old in the YAMAHA music program. She started private lessons at age seven and continued under various instructors, including Dr. Paul Wirth. Throughout the years, Amanda has attended music festivals including the Masterworks Festival in Winona Lake, Indiana as well as the Young Artist World Piano Festival in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Amanda also greatly enjoys accompanying. She accompanied the University Choir at the University of Wisconsin Platteville for two years as well as many instrumentalists and vocalists. Amanda attended the University of Wisconsin Platteville and received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Music with a piano emphasis in May of 2016. Amanda has taught over 60 unique students privately over the past eight years as well as in the Montessori school setting. She works with each student on focusing and achieving previously set goals as well as working with each individual and their family to set new goals. Over the past years she has enjoyed the opportunity to teach a diverse group of children, including those with ADD/ADHD, Asperger’s Syndrome, noncompliant behavior, learning disabilities, and physical challenges. These experiences have strengthened her to be a well rounded, flexible, and compassionate individual, who takes into account each student’s learning ability, needs, and goals and creates successful lesson plans to accommodate them. Each student receives special attention during lesson preparation, guaranteeing that each lesson is as successful as it can be. Amanda understands the challenges that come with learning music, but turns those challenges into fun! Her approach to teaching has allowed her students to progress at a rate that fits their learning style, which leads to a feeling of success and satisfaction. Amanda joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2018.


Cantor Mitchell Kowitz

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Music has always been a central part of Cantor Mitch’s life. He grew up in Jacksonville, FL. where he was an active part of Jacksonville’s City Music Festivals. He played Lil’ Abner in “ Lil’ Abner”, Lun Tha in The King and I, and, as an 18 year old, sang “Laporello’s Catalogue Aria” from “ Don Giovanni” with the Jacksonville Symphony.

He attended the Conservatory of Cincinnati as an opera and composition major. During his college years he played Figaro in “The Marriage of Figaro”, Papageno in “The Magic Flute” and Don Giovanni in “Don Giovanni.” It was always in his heart to sing and entertain. So he went to New York City where he played off Broadway. He portrayed Frederic in “The Pirates of Penzance,” and the Stage Manager in “Our Town”. Bus and truck tours gave him the opportunities to play Lun Tha in the “King and I” and Mark in “Chorus Line”.

His Jewish background led him to become a Cantor where he has served 2 congregations for 28 years. Beth Israel in Munster Indiana and Temple of Aaron in St. Paul. He is currently the Cantor at Sharie Chesed Synagogue in Minnetonka and is also the adjunct clergy for Sholom Home East in St Paul and West in Minneapolis. The entertainer is back in full force! Recently he finished filming a pilot food show entitled “Kosher Cuisine”, featuring Israeli music and has a cookbook out entitled Kosher Cuisine for a New Generation His teaching Voice, Piano, and Guitar.. Have been a mainstay at Temple of Aaron for over 25 years. With over 200 students to his credit… he remains one of the best teachers in the Twin Cities. As He has said “I love bringing the power and joy of music to all of my students. Music has the ability to transform” and transform is what Cantor Mitch does best

His new show is entitled “THE New Blue Eyes” It features exclusively the music and songs of Frank Sinatra. From Fly Me to the Moon, to My Way and of course New York New York, “ THE NEW BLUE EYES” will take you from the 40’s to the 70’s as only Frank’s music can. Cantor Mitch joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2019.


Yelena Tsvetovat

Yelena Tsvetovat

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With over 40 years of teaching experience, Yelena Tsvetovat is a true seasoned professional. She has graduated from Leningrad College and Saratov Conservatory of Music in Russia and taught piano in St. Petersburg.

In the U.S, Yelena has worked as a private instructor in her piano studio, and an early childhood teacher at McPhail Center for Music. She instills the life-long love of music in children from babies to young adults

As a Master Certified Piano Teacher and a member of Minnesota and National Music Teacher Associations, Yelena prepares her piano students to participate in events including festivals, concerts, competitions and exams. Yelena’s students have been winners of MMTA Piano State Contests and National Federation of Music Clubs festivals.

Yelena joined Kramer’s School of Music in February 2017.


Daniel J. Coe

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A versatile Classical and Jazz pianist Daniel studied music education at Ithaca College, graduating with honors. He then earned an MM in music composition at the University of Florida. Daniel has shared his musical talents with Aerosmith, Yoko Ono, Marina V, Danielle Evin, The Trews, The New York Dolls, David Johansen, Tim Hockenberry, Jennifer Cella, and many others. He has also orchestrated Golden Globe-winning dramas (Flesh and Bone, Dave Porter), prepared music for various Star Wars trailers and video games, and assisted film composers (Marcelo Zarvos, Too Big To Fail, Beastly, You Don’t Know Jack, Remember Me, Brooklyn’s Finest; Angelo Badalamenti, Blue Velvet, Twin Peaks, Mulholland Drive). His music has been on Saturday Night live, The Daily Show, NASCAR and much more. His extensive experience in music education makes him a very appreciated teacher by parents and students alike. Daniel joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2016.


Seda Bagdasarova

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Seda was born in Baku, Azerbaijan. She started taking piano lessons at the age of six. At the age of 16, she was admitted to the Azerbaijan Music College, majoring in Choir Conducting/Piano. Seda worked as a soloist with a pop/jazz ensemble. After college, Seda spent two years in a program emphasizing theatrical acting skills and classical voice performance. Seda was admitted to the State Opera Theater, where she became the youngest Mezzo-Soprano performing fully stage Operas.

Seda worked at the Russian Academy of Music as a voice instructor, collaborating with composer and chamber music vocalists. After moving to Twin Cities, she started working with the Minnesota Chorale as an Alto Section Leader and a Soprano Section Leader with Wayzata Community Church. Seda specializes in voice instruction. She joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2015.


Irene Merz

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Irine is an academically trained musician, performer and teacher accomplished in a wide variety of musical styles, from classical to traditional and folk music. Irine is experienced in entertaining live audiences at concert halls, operas, music theaters, hospitals and nursing homes. She is eager to bring professional expertise to all skill levels, from beginners to advanced, in private studios or classrooms, using a unique combination of 30 years of educational and performance experience. Irine has expertise in violin, viola, guitar and piano.


Briana McGrane

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Briana McGrane, a Twin Cities native, began studying piano at the age of eight. She began teaching private piano lessons in high school. While in high school, she participated in Minnesota’s All-State Band and Orchestra, as well as the Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies and Minnesota Youth Symphonies. Briana has studied numerous instruments including piano, bassoon, and clarinet. Her teachers include Jocelyn Hagen (piano), Sara Brunk (piano), Marcia Thoen (clarinet), Laurie Merz (bassoon) and Chris Marshall (bassoon). Briana has been fortunate to travel with many different music ensembles to perform in several different countries including Spain, Argentina, Austria, Germany, England and Paris.

Briana will graduate from Luther College with a degree in music performance and education in May 2020. She is passionate about building a curriculum that uses existing curriculum and adding elements of each student’s individual interests. Briana has experience teaching numerous ages young preschool students through adults. Briana joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2020.


Jennifer Lang Photo

Jennifer Lang

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Jennifer Lang has been teaching the violin for over 15 years, beginning in high school as a one-on-one tutor within her private teacher’s studio. After completing her music performance degree at the Oberlin Conservatory, Jennifer taught violin to students at the International School of Paris and Ecole Koenig in France. A trained Suzuki teacher, Jennifer continues to attend professional development workshops and trainings yearly to stay up-to-date with the latest teaching techniques and innovations. As a free-lance performer, Jennifer plays regularly with the Minnesota Sinfonia and the Lyra Baroque Ensemble. She is especially passionate about collaborating with other artists and composers to create unusual and unique recital programs! One of her more recent recitals collaborations was with local dance historian Jane Peck, for a program integrating baroque instruments and dance. Prior to this, she collaborated with local composer Janika Vandervelde to create an acoustical composition, KAYAK, that incorporates violin improvisations with themes of nature and sound. Jennifer joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2018.


Dr. Galina Ajunts

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Dr. Galina Ajunts graduated from Michigan State University in 2003 with the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Violin Performance. Since early childhood, she was exposed to the wonderful sounds of Concerti of Mozart, Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky and Brahms. She studied with many pedagogues in different parts of the former Soviet Union. In the US, her teachers were the world famous concert violinists Walter Verdehr, the founder of the Verdehr Trio, and Dmitri Berlinsky.

Her teaching experience in the US encompasses years 2002-2015. Galina teaches violin, viola, and beginning piano, for all ages. Working as both private and group teacher she had opportunities to prepare students for solo performances, auditions, as well as led sectional practices for the orchestras. Galina joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2015.


Momcilo Aleksandric

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Momcilo “Moma” Aleksandric is a Serbian born classical guitarist currently finishing his doctoral degree in guitar performance at the University of Minnesota.

After winning the first prize at the prestigious Hong Kong Altamira International Guitar Competition in 2018, Moma has been invited to give concerts, lectures and master-classes across the world. He appeared at events such as the Thailand International Guitar Festival, Hong Kong International Guitar Forum, ShenZhen Fuge International Guitar Week, Melbourne Guitar Perspectives Winter Celebration, Universidad Nacional of Costa Rica International Artist Series, ZhenJiang International Guitar Festival, and many others. Lately he also became a prize winner at the Miami International GuitART Festival, Guitar Foundation of America Ensemble Competition, Southern Guitar Festival Ensemble Competition, University of Rhode Island Rising Guitar Stars Program, and many others. In his residing Twin Cities, he gave multiple performances for the Minnesota Guitar Society, and played five concerts in the Baroque Room in Saint Paul.

While teaching individual and group lessons at the University of Minnesota, he has been awarded with the University of Minnesota Libraries Grant to create the first University of Minnesota Textbook for guitar that will be published by the same institution. Universidad Nacional of Costa Rica awarded him with a special diploma for the guitar development in Heredia. In 2019, the Guitar Foundation of America’s Soundboard Magazine published his research on Miguel Llobet’s Variaciones sobre un Tema de Sor. In addition, he presented his research papers and lecture recitals on Fernando Sor, Miguel Llobet, Benjamin Britten and Leo Brouwer at the University of Melbourne (2019), Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts (2018), Florida International University (2018), University of Indianapolis (2017), University of Cincinnati (2017), and many others. Momcilo joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2019.


Matteo Palmer

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Matteo moved from Vermont to the Twin Cities in 2015 to pursue his music education and career. He attended the Mcnally Smith College of Music in St. Paul up until it’s untimely closing and is now currently finishing his Bachelor’s degree in Music Composition for Film and TV with Berklee College of Music’s online program. Matteo has an assortment of original material released, including three finger-style guitar albums, two of which being produced by Grammy winning producer/guitarist and Windham Hill Records founder, William Ackerman. He has been recognized internationally for his guitar playing and has been a featured performer at awards shows, music conventions, cruise ships, and guitar shows across the country. A passionate composer, Matteo regularly writes in an assortment of styles for television, and his music can be heard on shows such as Good Morning America, General Hospital, and Adult Swim.

He loves blues, rock, funk, R&B, and enjoys playing both acoustic and electric guitar. Matteo also has a strong passion for music theory and composition/songwriting. He enjoys teaching how guitar can be used as a useful tool for writing your own music. Matteo joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2019.


Andrew Oliver

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Andrew has a Bachelor of Music Degree from The Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA. He has been teaching guitar lessons for over 25 years to students of all ages. He can teach a wide variety of styles. Jazz, Classical, Blues, Rock and Popular Music on Acoustic and Electric guitar. Andrew has most recently performed with The Sneetches and the Ska band Topper Norris in and around the Twin Cities area. Andrew Joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2015.


Brad Richardson

Brad Richardson

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Brad Richardson has been playing guitar since 1975. Heavily influenced by his father’s college students in the late 60’s, he bought The Beatles’ “Sgt. Pepper” when it was released and has witnessed first-hand the entirety of the evolution of rock and roll.
In college at Harvard, Brad majored in Folklore and Mythology, and with the cooperation of the Harvard Music Department, focused on American traditional music roots — blues, gospel, Appalachian bluegrass, country, as it all culminated in a form called rock and roll. Brad also attended the University of Arizona as a graduate Theater Director.
As a professional, besides a decade-long stint as guitarist/song writer for the American band, Matinee Idol, Brad has worked largely as a theater artist, and in recent years, has been the Audio Engineer for a television production company, Magnetic Productions, editing, mixing, and sweetening hundreds of television shows.
Brad feels the beauty of playing guitar is in its range of expression and circumstance — from recording, to playing live with a band, solo or duo, to sitting at home alone singing favorite songs to suit a mood.
Brad is blessed with three children who all play multiple instruments, and when not busy playing, he spends most of his time cultivating the St. Louis Park Theater he and his wife co-founded, Maggie’s Farm Theater. Brad joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2018.


Daniel Volovets

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Daniel Volovets is a guitarist, composer, arranger, and instructor specializing in classical, flamenco, Latin American, and jazz music. Although born in the United States, his music is informed first and foremost by his Russian heritage. Daniel is a prolific performer, giving concerts regularly throughout the Twin Cities. Daniel’s mastery of many musical genres and aesthetics is evident in the breadth of his extensive repertoire, which spans numerous countries and eras. He is an accomplished arranger and composer, utilizing the harmonic and tonal possibilities of the guitar in his arrangements and compositions for both solo guitar and various ensembles. Daniel graduated from the University of St. Thomas with a B.S. in Neuroscience and currently attends the University of Minnesota Medical School, aspiring to balance careers in medicine and music. Daniel works with students of all ages and skill levels. Daniel joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2017.


Anatoly Shapiro

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Anatoly Shapiro, a classical guitarist, received his degree in guitar performance and pedagogy from the M. Mussorgsky St. Petersburg College of Music. Since graduation, he has worked as a soloist and accompanist at the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra and Kiev Philharmonic Orchestra. He taught guitar at music colleges in Kiev and other schools in Kiev and Moscow. He recorded guitar music for television and radio. Since coming to United States twenty years ago, he taught guitar at music schools and as a private instructor. He performed at restaurants, jazz clubs, theaters and other venues across the Twin Cities area. He participated in the Guitaratone with the best guitarists in the state. Anatoly has taught guitar and performed in Russia, Ukraine and United States for the past 45 years. One of his best students, Daniel Volovets, is a very accomplished guitarist and performer in Minnesota. Anatoly joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2015.


David Collins Guitar

David Collins

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David is a passionate native Twin Cities artist and teacher. He is an accomplished lead, rhythm and bass guitarist and also enjoys playing original works on piano. He has recorded and performed as the originator, front man and lead guitarist, for his former band and for solo engagements such as Mill City Nights 2014 winner of Gorilla Music Battle of the Bands, City Hall Denver, CO., Raw Artists Underground Denver CO and Mpls., with Minneapolis venues such as; The Fine Line, The Pourhouse, The Honey, The Skyway Theater, Acadia and Dangerfield’s in Shakopee MN and many local coffee shops, schools and private venues since 2005.

His focus is on student, teacher rapport, growth in technical ability, music theory, ear- training, composition, and writing. The styles of music that inspire David in his teaching are rock, indie, contemporary and classical music for relaxation and healing. He is also fundamentally inspired by family and faith, nature and fitness.

David’s teaching and professional affiliations: Hennepin Technical College and special studio project involvements with the Institute of Production and Recording, (IPR), and as an instructor for his personal band, other band members and students at Shakopee Senior High School. David joined Kramer School of Music in 2016.


Elena Danny

Elena Denny

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A native of Chicago, Elena Denny is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Cello Performance at the University of Minnesota, studying with Tanya Remenikova. In March of 2017, Elena was a second place prize winner in the Strings III division of the Schubert Club Bruce P. Carlson Student Scholarship Competition. She completed her bachelor’s degree at Illinois Wesleyan University where she studied with Nina Gordon and performed the Saint-Saëns Cello Concerto with the Illinois Wesleyan University Civic Orchestra as a winner of the Henry Charles Memorial Concerto/Aria Competition. Elena attended the Virtuoso & Belcanto Festival in Lucca, Italy, in the summer of 2017. Elena has participated twice in the International Chamber Music Academy in Kyustendil, Bulgaria, where she studied with cellist, Anatoli Krastev. Other private teachers include Silvio Righini in Milan, Italy, Teddy Rankin-Parker in Chicago, IL, and Nancy Blum in Chicago, IL. Elena joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2017.


Tara Priolo

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Soprano Tara Priolo leads a diverse career teaching and performing with passionate tenacity and bold creativity. She finds herself at home in both the choral and chamber communities lending her hand as a section leader, administrator, and soloist. As an educator she shares her propensity for enlivening students’ confidence paired with her strong interest in vocal pedagogy. Frequently requested as a guest soloist by smaller organizations and colleagues, Tara enjoys performing a variety of new compositions as well as the classics. Tara
has affliations with Opera on Tap, Thursday Musical, Exultate Chamber Choir, Vox Nova Chorale, and Minnesota Chorale.
Tara welcomes students of all performance levels, from beginning to elite and enjoys teaching many different genres, prepping students for auditions, and finding healthy and true ringing tones in each student. I live by the phrase “Don’t sing trained, sing free.” Every few months, we will re-evaluate our goals and repertoire to ensure we are always on the path to the student’s definition of success.


Claudia Finsaas

Claudia Finsaas

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Claudia received her Bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance from the Wheaton College Conservatory of Music in 2016. While at Wheaton she studied both violin and voice and was an active member and soloist of the Wheaton College Concert Choir, Opera Program, and Wheaton College Symphonic Orchestra. She started taking violin lessons at the age of four, and voice lessons at the age of fifteen.
While she has a passion for singing opera, she is equally fond of singing musical theatre and sacred music. Growing up she had the privilege of studying with a violin teacher who taught her to appreciate classical music and fiddle music and prepared her for multiple competitions in both. Her love for music performance, entertainment, and the theatre continues to grow with each encounter. Claudia joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2017.


Yun Kyong Lee

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Operatically trained Mezzo Soprano, Yun Kyong Lee has competed around the world, securing prizes in Japan and the United States. No stranger to the stage, Ms. Lee has performed principle roles throughout the United States including Sue from the newly written opera ‘Trio’ by Natalie Draper, Maman and Dragonfly from ‘L’Enfant et les sortileges’ by M. Ravel at the Peabody Institute. Most recently Ms. Lee performed the role of Suzuki in Puccini’s ‘Madama Butterfly’ with the University of Minnesota Opera Theatre. In the fall of 2016, UMN Opera Theatre will be mounting Benjamin Brittens’s ‘Rape of Lucretia’ in which Ms. Lee will perform the title role.
In addition to her performance endeavors, Ms. Lee possesses an extensive background in vocal pedagogy and choral leadership. Besides private teaching for all ages, Ms Lee’s most recent appointment was music director of New Life Presbyterian Church in Catonsville, Maryland. A recipient of both a Master of Music degree and Graduate Performance Diploma from Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, Ms. Lee is currently a doctoral candidate at the University Of Minnesota.

Yun joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2016


Alec Tonjes

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Alec Tonjes is a young up-and-coming Musician and Teacher. He was fortunate enough to attend Mainstreet School of performing arts in Hopkins and Perpich Arts High in Golden Valley. There he was able to expand is musical knowledge and get ahead in his music education. He went on to study at Mcnally Smith College of music where he received The Marv Dalghren Scholarship for Excellence in Percussion, an Award given to in coming Performance majors. Alec has been actively teaching since 2013 and has been a full time teacher for 2 years teaching 35+ students a week. He has taught wide variety of students, some as young as 4 and as old as 60. Alec is also comfortable teaching students with disabilities and has worked with kids who have autism, scoliosis, and more severe speech impediments.

Comfortable teaching most genres of music, Alec is proficient not only in drum set, but bass guitar too, as well as the basics of Hand drums, world percussion and Bell percussion(xylophone, glockenspiel, vibraphone,etc.). Alec jointed Kramer’s School of Music in 2017.


Kismat Shrestha

Kismat Shrestha

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Kismat D Shrestha, 27, has been playing drums for the past 21 years and touring around the world. He has been teaching music for the past 6 years. Kismat studied jazz drumming at the Kathmandu Jazz Conservatory from 2008 and became a faculty member at the very place from 2012. He plays and teaches a wide variety of styles including jazz, latin, fusion and rock. Kismat also plays in one of the most popular rock groups from Nepal, Albatross. He has extensively toured Nepal, Finland, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, India, Bangladesh, Thailand, Hong Kong, the USA and played some of the biggest music festivals such as the South By SouthWest (SXSW) in Austin, South Asian Bands Festival in Delhi, South Asian RockFest in Dhaka, with his band Albatross and other groups. Kismat joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2018.


Anastasiya Nyzkodub

Anastasiya Nyzkodub

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Ukrainian born clarinetist Anastasiya Nyzkodub is an active performer and teacher based in the Twin-Cities area. Her recent performances include playing as a guest principal clarinet with Fargo-Moorhead Symphony Orchestra and Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra. In the last few seasons she has performed with the Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, La Crosse Symphony Orchestra, Encore Winds and North Star Winds. She had recently completed her Doctorate of Musical Arts at the University of Minnesota. Prior to her DMA studies she also completed her Master’s at the University of Minnesota and received her Bachelor Degree at Grand Valley State University in Clarinet Performance. Born in Ukraine, she attended a music school from a young age. She moved with her family to Siberia where she studied clarinet with her father, Sergiy Nizkodub at the College of Arts in Khanty-Mansiysk. Before coming to the US, Anastasiya participated in a summer program ”New Names” and played in a chamber ensemble ”Consone”. While pursuing her Bachelor degree she played and toured with GVSU New Music Ensemble. In 2015 Ms. Nyzkodub received a First Prize at the Thursday Musical Young Artist Competition.  She had also performed solo and chamber music in the concerts featuring the Russian composers with Denis Evstuhin and Helen Chung. In addition to performing Ms. Nyzkodub worked as a teaching assistant for the Music Theory and Ear-Training Department at the University of Minnesota. She was a semi-finalist in the William Byrd Young Artist Competition in 2017. She is also a member of the woodwind trio Sonora Winds. Anastasiya joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2017.

Adrian

Adrian Volovets

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Adrian is working toward his Bachelor’s degree in Pipe Organ Performance at The University of Minnesota School of Music. With musical interests ranging from baroque to jazz, Adrian draws upon a diverse set of influences and genres in his performances. His biggest inspiration is Karl Richter, the world-famous conductor, organist, harpsichordist, and choirmaster. He has performed at venues such as The Basilica of Saint Mary, Cathedral of Saint Paul, Lake of The Isles Lutheran Church, Cedar Cultural Center, The Museum of Russian Art, and The Dakota Jazz Club. Adrian started in Kramer’s School of Music in 2017.


Ming-Hui Lin

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Born in Taiwan, Ming-Hui Lin started to play piano and flute at age 6. She is currently pursuing her Doctoral degree in flute performance and secondary area in music theory at the University of Minnesota studying with Immanuel Davis. In 2015 Spring, Ming-Hui got her Master of Music degree in flute performing and was awarded the lifelong membership of the National Music Honor Society Pi Kappa Lumbda at Boston University where she studied with Elizabeth Ostling, the associate principal flutist in Boston Symphony Orchestra. Before she came to the United States, she studied with Sarah Wu for flute performance and with Yu-Min Su for piano performance. She earned her Bachelor degree in music from Fu Jen Catholic University in Taiwan.

Ming-Hui is an active soloist, orchestral and chamber musician. She has participated in many concerts including the chamber and the orchestra in Taiwan, Japan, China, Europe and the United States. She is also an experienced teacher in the music field for seven years. She plays as a substitute flutist in the Minnesota Opera Orchestra and also acts as a mentor working with the Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies. Recently, she won the first prize from Upper Midwest Flute Association Young Artist Competition. Ming-Hui joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2017.


Arlys Alford

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Arlys’ vocal & artistic exploration began at age 3, singing solos at her church, dance lessons at 5 and piano at 6. She sang alto in her high school’s classically influenced concert choir and madrigal singers. As a young artist diversity of style and broad experience became her goal and with that in mind she wrote, sang and performed with numerous original rock, pop, funk & blues bands while simultaneously acting, singing, dancing or choreographing stage musicals. As Arlys says “without training, I ruined my voice thru overwork and eventually wasn’t able to sing a single note.” After spending years studying with a private voice teacher to recover her own ability to produce sound, she took on her first private voice student in 1997 and found her path forever altered. From 2008-2012 she acted as her own master teacher’s regular substitute at Culver City and Santa Monica Music Schools, then returned to Minneapolis in 2012 to continue aiding singers develop their voices.

Arlys studied voice for 12 years with master teachers of bel canto & contemporary singing techniques. She has a lifetime of performing experience, spent 12 years living and working in Los Angeles and has 18 years of professional voice teaching experience. Her cross-training in dance, yoga, Tai Chi, commercial & improvisational acting help provide a well-rounded platform from which to deliver information, guide vocal explorers and help develop talent. She focuses on helping you develop an easier way to sustain the best posture, breath support, resonance and pitch control for today’s music, bringing awareness to your existing vocal habits and providing tools to adjust those habits so you can hear and feel the difference. Arlys joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2016.


Laura Vosika

Laura Vosika

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Laura Vosika teaches harp, flute, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, and trombone. She began organ lessons at the age of 7, and trombone at the age of 11. From there, she steadily added multiple instruments to her repertoire. She holds a B.A. Music from Lawrence University, and an M.S. Education from Old Dominion University.

She has enjoyed more than thirty years playing, teaching, and performing on multiple instruments, ranging from dockside solo performances on fife for the arrival of tall ship recreations, to playing trombone for ballets, musical theater, and oratorios, to playing harp for art shows and banquets, to recording with a big band, to playing on the dockside during the historic departure of the USS Missouri from Bremerton, WA to Hawaii.

Past experiences include founding and directing a school band, and serving as a regular member of the Buz Whiteley Big Band (Poulsbo, WA), the Farragut Brass Band (Bremerton, WA) playing for navy ship departures and arrivals, and principal trombonist of the Sammamish Symphony (Issaquah, WA). Laura has loved the worlds that music has opened up, and the people and experiences it has led to, and loves the chance to bring that joy to students of all ages. She joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2015.


Olga Platova

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In 1992 Olga entered the College of Music named after A. Schnittke (in Moscow, Russia). Olga studied music for 9 years in colleges and universities. She graduated with a bachelors and master’s degrees in music. During the years of training, she took part with the student choir and orchestra in various competitions, celebrations and concerts. In 2005, she entered graduate school at Moscow State Pedagogical University.

Olga has 11 years of teaching experience in children’s music schools in Moscow. She was the head of the choral department. From 2004 to 2006 she was the Head of the Theory Division of the School.

In 2004 – she started to participate in international competitions in condiucting in Germany. In 2005, in Bulgaria, she participated and received a silver medal in the International Conducting Competition.

Olga has 20 years (более 20 лет) of experience in choral activities. In 1992 she became the conductor of the teenage \choir at the Moscow  Baptist Church. Since that time, Olga worked as a conductor of the church choirs.

After arriving in the US in 2010, she transferred her bachelors and masters degrees, and worked in the music schools of Minneapolis as a conductor and teacher of Music theory, piano, conducting and vocal. From 2017 she is the owner and founder of the Minnesota School of Talents.

Olga’s teaching and professional affiliations: Minnesota Music Teachers Association (MMTA), Music Nation Teachers Association (MTNA). Olga is currently the Lead Conductor at Kramer’s School of Music. She joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2015.


Robert Fletcher

Robert Fletcher

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Originally from Eden Prairie, MN, Rob received his Bachelor’s degree in Jazz Drums performance from DePaul University School of Music in Chicago, IL. For the past ten years he has continued to have a passion for teaching music on the drums and percussion with emphasis on creativity, musicianship, and the importance of learning the lineage of the modern drum set.

He has brought his musical knowledge to students young and old in Chicagoland, Central America, and, most recently back in his home state of Minnesota.

With a deep interest in the melting pot which is modern music, Rob has been able to work with many creative musicians in the Chicago jazz, chamber, and rock scenes. These groups have brought him into recording studios and many stages locally and on tour throughout North America, Europe, and the United Kingdom.

In addition to challenging himself to grow as a musician every day, Rob enjoys composing music on the piano, and spending time with his Samoyed/Sheltie, Elvin. Rob joined Kramer’s School of Music in 2019.


Rachel Baruch

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Rachel (Rachelika) Baruch was born in city Baku, Azerbaijan. She lived in Israel few years. She traveled toCosta-Rica few times for dance and art work. She has been living in USA since 2001. She is a ballroom danceInstructor and she always enjoyed learning & teaching fine arts. She is an artist with focus on sketching,drawing & painting. Rachelika specializes in drawing Instruction for kids, and art techniques that build skills andhelp children to become creative artists. To view more of examples of Rachelika’s art work, please visit herinstagram online at: “Rachelika’s Art”. Rachelika joined Kramer’s School of Music as an art instructor in 2015.


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