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Music Faculty

Hallie Wetzell

FSPA Vocal Director, Glee Club, Instructor of Voice

Hallie Wetzell holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theater from Occidental College and Master of Music degrees in Vocal Performance and Vocal Pedagogy from New England   Conservatory of Music. As FSPA Vocal Director, Hallie oversees the FSPA Voice program and serves as music director for all ensembles, as well as productions of the Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) and Electric Youth. Hallie was the Vocal Director for the FSPA Children’s Choirs for the professional touring companies of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat in 2000 and 2005 and Evita in 2004. She has been on FSPA’s Faculty since 1998 and became Vocal Director for FPAC in 1999.     

Judy Bergesen

Instructor of Little Music School

Judy Bergesen holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Framingham State College. She served as an elementary school  teacher at the Benjamin Franklin Classical Charter Public School in Franklin from 1995 to 2012. Prior to her time spent at BFCCPS, Judy was Assistant Director at FSPA for six years, where she served as a Children’s Music,  Musical Theater and Acting instructor. She returned to the FSPA Faculty in 2013. Judy has extensive performing experience and has also served on the Advisory Board for the Franklin Performing Arts Company.  

Ben Cameron

Broadway Faculty - Voice and Acting

Ben Cameron is your Broadway Buddy! Ben is a Broadway veteran having appeared in Footloose (original cast), Aida, and a little show called Wicked (original cast, if you listen to track #2 of the Wicked cast album you can hear Ben drop the plot pivotal line, "Glinda, is it true you were her friend?" He has toured the US and Europe in productions of Footloose, Fame, The Who's Tommy, State Fair, and Sweet Charity (playing opposite Molly Ringwald). He has enjoyed 2 sold out runs of his 1 man show "Different is Good" in 2005 and 2010. He continues to write, direct, and choreograph intimate shows for Broadway and cabaret stars at some of NYC's most notable venues. Ben has served on the faculties of NYU's CAP21 studio and Wagner College and as creative consultant for Mapinspired:The Storytellers' Dance Company. Ben continues to teach dance and theatre workshops and choreograph around the world.   Ben is the creator of Broadway Sessions. Sessions has been running for over 8 years and brings Broadway's brightest together at The Laurie Beechman Theatre. Since creating Sessions, Ben has become one of the theatre community’s most beloved hosts and personalities. Ben has also produced web series My Broadway Bar, Dance Captain Dance Attack, and Broadway ObSessions.

Kitty Cheung-Evans

Instructor of Little Music School and Piano

memberphoto Kitty Cheung-Evans holds a Master’s Degree in Piano Performance from Longy School of Music and a Bachelor’s  Degree from the University of Lethbridge. She joined the FSPA Music Faculty in 2007 and also teaches throughout central Massachusetts. Kitty volunteers her time at the Boys’ and Girls’ Club in Leominster, where she lectured on music appreciation and the connection between music, art, society and history in conjunction with the Fitchburg Art Museum. She is an active freelance solo pianist and has collaborated with instrumentalists, musical theater performers and choirs. Kitty’s love of extended piano techniques includes  improvisations, prepared piano and various electronics music, which has led her to become a frequent participant at the Longy Lab since 2012.  

Austin Davy

Instructor of Voice and Piano

Austin Davy has a Bachelor of Music degree from the Hartt School of Music where he studied Musical Theatre Music Direction. As a keyboard player, Austin has subbed on the national tours of Wicked, Waitress, An American in Paris, The Color Purple, Jersey Boys, Hello Dolly, Miss Saigon, and Cabaret. He recently assisted the Music Director on Roman Holiday at the Golden Gate Theatre. In the greater Boston area, Austin was Music Supervisor for Boston Children's Theatre, has Assistant Music Directed or played keyboards for six productions at North Shore Music Theatre, and was Music Director for the MA High School Music Theatre Awards. His teachers include Paul Rutman, Anchie Donn and David Westfall for classical piano, Eric Stern, Edward Bolkovac and Edward Cumming for conducting, and Daniel Blake and Marishka Weirzbicki for voice. Austin joined the FSPA Music Faculty in 2020. 

Jeffrey DiIorio

Instructor of Guitar, Ukulele, and Bass

Jeffrey DiIorio holds Bachelor of Arts Degrees in Music Performance and Philosophy from Providence College and a Masters in Music Performance with a focus in jazz guitar from the University of Rhode Island. While at PC, Jeffrey performed with their Pep Band, Jazz Band, Funk Ensemble, and Jazz Combo. He has studied with Jay Azzolina, Lyle Brewer, David Riley, Phil Sargent, Julian Lage, Adam Smirnoff, and Bruce Bartlett. Professionally, he has performed with ensembles led by Alex Lee-Clark, John Allmark, and Mark Burney as well as with The Mac Odom Band, The Phunky Autokratz, and Nightshift Entertainment. Jeffrey was the recipient of the Reverend Leo S. Cannon, O.P. Award for Excellent Musicianship as well as Judges’ Choice at the Berklee High School Jazz Festival. Jeffrey joined FSPA's Music Faculty in 2019. 

Irina Fainkichen

Instructor of Violin

Born in St. Petersburg, Russia, Irina Fainkichen received degrees from the Rachmaninoff Music College (Novgorod, Russia), St. Petersburg State Conservatory, and Rubin Academy of Music and Dance (Jerusalem, Israel). She is a busy freelance violinist in the Greater Boston area. Irina was concertmaster of San Francisco’s Russian Chamber Orchestra for many years, appearing as soloist numerous times. She is a member of Cape Symphony and has performed with the New Hampshire Symphony, Lexington Symphony, Pro-Arte Chamber Orchestra and recently with Broadway on Tour’s Hello Dolly! and Phantom of the Opera at Boston Opera House, and An American in Paris at the Ogunquit Playhouse in Maine. Ms. Fainkichen is a co-founder of “Flying Hearts” duo, which performs in a number of musical genres including jazz, Klezmer, and classic American tunes. She has been on the Franklin School for the Performing Arts music faculty since 2009 and has played in the orchestras of many Frankiin Performing Arts Company productions including The Music Man, The Nutcracker, Peter Pan, Fiddler on the Roof, and Spamalot. Irina is coordinator of THE BLACK BOX Classical Series and most recently performed there with Quartett Giocosa.

Sara Jean Ford

Broadway Faculty - Voice and Acting

Sara Jean Ford is best known for starring as Christine Daaé on Broadway and in the National Tour of the worldwide sensation The Phantom of the Opera. Also on Broadway: CATS (Jellylorum), How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (Smitty), A Little Night Music (Mrs Anderssen, Anne/Petra cover), and Finian's Rainbow (Arlene, Sharon cover). Off-Broadway: The Fantasticks (Luisa, Revival Cast Recording). Broadway in Chicago: WICKED (Glinda/Nessa Rose cover). Regional: The Music Man (Marian), Into the Woods (Cinderella), Sunday in the Park With George (Dot), Candide (Cunegonde), Carousel (Carrie), and originated the role of Nellie Oleson in Little House on the Prairie. Concerts: Dream of Now Dream of Then, Anyone Can Whistle at City Center Encores!, Defying Gravity: The Music of Stephen Schwartz and Eric Whittacre at Lincoln Center, Paradise Lost at Carnegie Hall, Chicago’s Auditorium Theatre, and Walt Disney Concert Hall. Sara is the proud mama of Annie.

Ali Funkhouser

Instructor of Acting, Musical Theater, Piano, Voice & Repertoire Consultation

Ali Funkhouser has a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Theatre from Oklahoma City University. Her performing credits include the national tours of Joseph...Dreamcoat and Evita, Legally Blonde (The LEX), Puccini's Suor Angelica (Chelsea Opera NYC), Hairspray, Company, How to Succeed..., and more. She has performed her solo cabaret show "I Only Wanna Laugh" at NYC's Don't Tell Mama. Ali studied improv comedy at Upright Citizens Brigade. Learn more at www.alifunkhouser.com Ali joined the FSPA Music, Drama, and Voice faculty in 2020.

Kenny Hadley

Instructor of Drums, Director of Saturday Sessions and FSPA Percussion Ensemble

Kenny Hadley joined the FSPA Music Faculty in 1998 and has extensive teaching experience, including master classes and clinics throughout New England. He has played throughout the US, Europe and South America and has worked with many well-known musicians including Van Morrison, Dizzy Gillespie, The Count Basie Orchestra, Peter Wolf, The Drifters and Rebecca Parris, as well as with the North Shore Music Theater, Franklin Performing Arts Company and Electric Youth. He serves as orchestra contractor for the Franklin Performing Arts Company and has co-produced The Sacred Music of Duke Ellington, ‘Tis the Season! and the CD recordings of Electric Youth. His acclaimed Kenny Hadley Big Band has shared the stage with the Count Basie Orchestra, Dizzy Gillespie’s Band, and the Duke Ellington Orchestra and has hosted guest soloists including Clark Terry and Louie Bellson. The band’s recordings include Come Sunday, A Beautiful Friendship and Common Thread.

April Hall

Instructor of Voice

April Hall graduated from Berklee College of Music, where she received the prestigious Louis Armstrong Performance Award. She has done projects for Atlantic Records, under the direction of Arif Mardin, for the likes of Chaka Khan, Melissa Manchester and Bette Midler and has performed with artists such as Rosemary Clooney, Al Jarreau, Jim Ed Brown, Helen Cornelius and Dinah Shore. She regularly performs and records with New England’s finest musicians, including Gray Sargent, Tim Ray, Marshall Wood, Kenny Hadley, Les Harris Jr., Tom Hall, Joe “Sonny” Barbato, Jerry Bergonzi, John Lockwood, Marty Ballou, Mark Poniatowski and New Orleans' Amadee Castenell. April is currently Executive Producer for ImprovLive 365, a daily web series dedicated to exploring spontaneous creativity and improvisation. She is also an award-winning songwriter. Her music has been featured on Boston's "Women in Music" series, on "The Coffeehouse,” WGBH’s “Eric in the Evening” and the nationally syndicated "Jazz After Hours" with PRI's Jim Wilke. In addition to her ongoing performances, April also continues to work with students across the country, holding master classes in modern vocal techniques and on the subject of "Songwriting in a Free Society." April has served as an FSPA Vocal Coach since 2012.  

Tyler Hanes

Broadway Faculty - Voice and Dance

Tyler Hanes was only 17 when he was discovered by Ann Reinking while attending Broadway Theater Project in Tampa, FL. She cast him in the 1st national tour of the Tony Award winning musical Fosse. Following the tour, he attended Carnegie Mellon University, leaving after a year to make his Broadway debut in the 2002 Broadway revival of Oklahoma! Soon after, he appeared in the original Broadway companies of Urban Cowboy, The Boy From Oz, The Frogs, the 2005 revival of Sweet Charity, and as Larry in the original revival company of A Chorus Line. Tyler also appeared in the Broadway companies of Hairspray and the 2014 revival of On The Town. He starred as Rum Tum Tugger in the highly anticipated Broadway revival of CATS, for which he was nominated for a Chita Rivera Award for Outstanding Male Dancer in a Broadway show.
Off-Broadway, he was featured in the musical Juno opposite Victoria Clark, Stephen Sondheim's A Bed And A Chair: A NY Love Affair, opposite Bernadette Peters, and American Dance Machine for the 21st Century. 
As a choreographer, his credits include Kristin Chenoweth: For The Girls on Broadway at the Nederlander Theatre, Dancing With The Stars, Kristin Chenoweth’s Some Lessons Learned World Tour, Kristin Chenoweth: Coming Home for PBS, The American Country Awards, Prohibition with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, The Way You Look Tonight with the Omaha Symphony Orchestra, and the Latin American premiere of El Chico De Oz in Lima, Peru. He is currently producing and starring in the upcoming dark comedy “Ms. Guidance.”

Jim Hogan

Broadway Faculty - Voice and Acting

Jim Hogan has been seen in the national tours of Waitress, The Phantom of the Opera, and Spring Awakening. His regional credits include The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Broadway at Music Circus), The Circus in Winter (Goodspeed), and Ragtime (Arden Theatre Co.) Jim appeared in The Seagull (dir. Michael Mayer). Workshop credits include The 12 (dir. John Doyle). Jim received his BFA in Musical Theater from Penn State University. He appears as a soloist with Symphony Orchestras across the country and is a member of the viral sensation #T3 whose videos have been viewed over 10 million times! See what everyone’s talking about: @jimhogan220 and @t.3official 

Heidi Iuliano

Instructor of Voice

Heidi Iuliano holds a Master’s Degree in Music Education and Vocal Performance (The Boston Conservatory), a Bachelor of Arts in Music and Communications (Assumption College) and is certified in Orff-Schulwerk Level I.   She has extensive teaching experience throughout New England and currently serves as a general music teacher in Norwood.  Heidi has sung with a number of choirs including RPM Voices of Rhode Island Gospel Choir, Central Congregational Church and Salisbury Singers and Salisbury Lyric Opera.  She joined the FSPA Faculty in 2017.

Jiwon Kwon

Instructor of Piano

Jiwon Kwon is pursuing a Master’s degree in Musicology at Washington University in St. Louis and has a Bachelor of Music Degree in Piano Performance and Jazz Composition from Berklee College of Music. She has been the recipient of multiple awards including the Downbeat Student Music Award for Original Composition (Small Ensemble), the Berklee College of Music Benny Golson Award, and the Berklee College of Music Clare Fischer Award. Jiwon’s arrangement of “I’m Hurt” is featured on the soundtrack for the Korean TV drama Loving You a Thousand Times. She has taught piano in South Korea, worked as an accompanist for Berklee’s vocal programs, and played in numerous recitals and concerts. Jiwon joined the FSPA Music Faculty in 2019.   

Kara Lindsay

Broadway Faculty - Voice and Acting

Kara Lindsay has a BFA from Carnegie Mellon. Her Broadway credits include Wicked (Glinda), Newsies (Katherine, Original Cast and Fathom Events Film), and Beautiful (Cynthia Weil). National Tour credits include Wicked (Glinda) and Little House on the Prairie (Laura). Regional credits include Newsies at Paper Mill Playhouse, Little House on the Prairie at The Guthrie, Mary Poppins at North Carolina Theatre, Cinderella at Kansas City Starlight, Cabaret at Kansas City Rep, and Lone Star Love at The 5th Avenue Theatre among others.

Liz Mason

Instructor of Little Music School

Liz Mason is a Franklin native and FSPA alumna. Joining the FSPA faculty in 2017, Liz is thrilled to combine her passion for teaching young children with her love of music right here in her home town. Nurturing and guiding children's development for 25 years, she earned an AS Degree in Early Childhood Development followed by her BA Degree in Liberal Arts and Studies with a Psychology concentration. She is licensed by the MA Department of Early Education and Care as an Infant/Toddler and Preschool Lead Teacher and is also Director II Certified. Liz attended the Northeast Montessori Institute and received her American Montessori Society Teaching Credential. She is presently employed as a Montessori Preschool Teacher at Sunrise Montessori School.  

Kevin Massey

Broadway Faculty - Voice and Acting

Kevin Massey graduated from UNC Chapel Hill as a Music Major on the Pre-Med track. When a friend convinced him to move to NYC for one crazy year before going off to med school for 8-12 more years, he found himself on the European tour of GREASE! playing Doody and began to imagine a life in the theater. After making his Broadway debut in the Tony Nominated Sign Language Rival of Big River, he decided perhaps this is where his path should go for now. Since then, Kevin’s been in 3 more broadway shows, understudying and playing the leads in the original cast of TARZAN (Tarzan), Memphis (Huey), and A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder (Monty). He re-created Monty for the 1st National Tour of Gentleman's Guide, toured with Big River, and played Tarzan in german in the Hamburg production of TARZAN.
Kevin has originated lead roles in Bonnie and Clyde (Ted, Asolo Rep), Little House on the Prairie (Almanzo, Guthrie, Paper Mill, 1st National Tour), Three Musketeers (D’Artagnan, Chicago Shakespeare), Bella (Bonny Johnny/Snaggletooth, Playwrights Horizons), Grumpy Old Men (Jacob, Ogunquit), and The Rivals (Jack Absolute, Bristol Riverside Theater).  Check out his resume for a more complete list at www.kevinmassey.com

Mariko Matsumura

Instructor of Voice

A native of Tokyo, Mariko Matsumura, Soprano, holds Master of Music in Vocal Performance from the Longy School of Music and BM in Vocal performance from the University of Montana. Her solo performance credits include works with the Missoula Symphony, Masterworks Chorale, Opera unMET, New England Light Opera, Tanglewood Festival Chorus, JYUGOYA Ensemble, and Lorelei Ensemble. Operatic performances include Aida, Hansel and Gretel, Der Rosenkavalier, and The Magic Flute. She has also premiered numerous compositions throughout New England and Japan.  An advocate for Japanese cultural outreach programs, Ms. Matsumura has served as artistic director/conductor for Japanese Chorus Ensemble, Chorus Boston. Under her direction, the chorus was invited to present traditional music throughout New England from 2012-2019. Ms. Matsumura studied voice with Robert Honeysucker, D'Anna Fortunato, Elizabeth Vrenios, and Yasuko Ohara, and conducting with Gary Funk. She is on voice faculty at the Franklin School for the Performing Arts. She also serves as Director of Music Ministry at First Congregational Church in Melrose.  Mariko joined the FSPA Music Faculty in 2002.

Kim Rezendes

FSPA Assistant Director, Director of Little Music School and Children's Music, Instructor of Piano and Musical Theater

Kim Rezendes graduated magna cum laude from Providence College with a Bachelor of Arts in Music and from Rhode Island College with a Master’s Degree in Teaching Music. As coordinator of Children’s Music at FSPA, she also serves as Program   Director for the Little Music School and Instructor of Musical Theater. Kim serves as Associate Organist at St. Mary Church in Franklin. One of FSPA’s first students, Kim joined the FSPA faculty in 1997.  

Christopher Rice

Broadway Faculty - Voice, Dance, and Marketing

Christopher Rice has appeared in the Broadway companies of Pretty Woman and The Book of Mormon. His tour credits include Hamilton, West Side Story (Baby John, Tony u/s), and White Christmas. His viral #Tappy YouTube videos have received over 10 million views and been featured on ABC World News with Diane Sawyer, The Meredith Vieira Show, On Air with a Ryan Seacrest, and more. Chris has appeared with Franklin Performing Arts Company as Jack Kelly in Newsies as well as his own creation: Christopher Rice’s The Tappy Christmas Special: LIVE!  Follow Chris on Instagram & Twitter: @ChrisRiceNY

Maria-Regina Seidlhofer

Music Department Artistic Advisor

Maria-Regina Seidhofer was born in Sao Paolo, Brazil and began her early studies with Dinora de Carvalho. She began concertizing at the age of six, giving solo recitals and making feature performances with orchestra. From 1961-1966, she studied at the Academy of Music in Vienna with Brunco Seidlhoefer, whom she later married. She received a Diploma Speciale from the Minister of Education in Austria. Her first appearances in the United States included performances at Boston University and the New England Conservatory and in 1988, Professor Seidlhofer gave a concert in Washington D.C. at the invitation of the Organization of American States. Locally, she has performed at FSPA, the Walnut Hill School for the Arts and Dartmouth College. Since 1976, Regina has been on the Piano Faculty at the Academy of Music in Vienna. She travels extensively, teaching master courses in Finland, Germany, Brazil, Malta, Italy and the US and was decorated by the Ambassador of Brazil for outstanding service abroad. She has toured the Far East, where she also conducted master classes. Professor Seidlhofer visits the Franklin School for the Performing Arts, giving master classes to students and faculty and offering her continued guidance as Artistic Advisor.

Cordelia Tapping

Instructor of Voice and Songwriting

Cordelia Tapping is a singer and composer based in Boston. She has performed at the Vermont Jazz Center, in Music for Food concerts, as backup for Lake Street Dive, and on the stage of the Yellow Barn Music Festival in Vermont, as well as in Boston and New York neighborhoods on Yellow Barn’s Music Haul. In 2015, she was named a Young Arts Merit winner in jazz voice. Born in Boulder, Colorado, Cordelia moved to the Boston area at age 7 and attended the New England Conservatory preparatory school, where she studied jazz voice and violin, as well as participating in the Youth Chorale and Youth Camerata. As a student at Oberlin College, she was a member of Collegium Musicum. She is now working for Music for Food while continuing her bachelor’s degree in jazz voice at the New England Conservatory of Music as a student of Dominique Eade and Carla Kihlstedt.  Cordelia joined the FSPA Voice Faculty in 2019.

Clay Thomson

Broadway Faculty - Voice and Dance

Clay Thomson has performed on Broadway in King Kong (King’s Company), Newsies (Spot Colon), Matilda (Michael Wormwood), and the Broadway National Tours of Wicked (Chistery), West Side Story (A-rab), and Cameron Macintosh’s Oliver. TV credits include: Saturday Night Live, The TONY Awards, MACYS Thanksgiving Day Parade, The Tonight Show, GMA, The Late Show, The View, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, and more. Clay has performed at events featuring Shawn Mendes, Harry Styles, and Pharrell Williams. He recently choreographed the Franklin Performing Arts Company production of Matilda and starred in Christopher Rice's The Tappy Christmas Special: LIVE! For more, follow Clay on Instagram and Twitter @claythomson!

Ida Zelman

Instructor of Piano

Ida Zelman has a Bachelor’s Degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from the Vilnius Music Conservatory. She is a skilled educator with extensive experience in teaching a wide range of levels and interests, including young beginners, intermediate, advanced students, and avocational adults. Ida has comprehensive coaching experience in chamber music ensemble. She successfully prepares many students for the Royal Conservatory Music Program, who pass with high marks and perform on the stage of Carnegie Hall. Ida joined the FSPA Music Faculty in 1993.   

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