Martha Bishop is an Artist Affiliate in viola da gamba at Emory University where she studied composition with John A. Lennon. She taught cello and composition at Agnes Scott College and is a Fellow in composition at the Hambidge Center. Martha is the Chairman of the VdGSA Traynor composition contest. Her recent commissions were from the Viola da Gamba Society of America, the Atlanta Baroque Orchestra, and Mountain Collegium Workshop, all for anniversary celebrations. Two of her compositions have been recorded on the Sony label by gambist Hille Perl. Some compositions have been showcased by ASTA. Compositions are published by PRB Publications, Finale's "Make Music", and several compositions are listed on Luck’s Music Library.
Joanna Blendulf is Associate Professor of Viola da gamba and Baroque cello at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. Joanna has performed and recorded with leading period-instrument ensembles throughout the United States and abroad. She is currently co-principal cellist and principal viola da gamba player of the Portland Baroque Orchestra and has also performed as principal cellist of Pacific MusicWorks, Pacific Baroque Orchestra, American Bach Soloists, Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra, Apollo’s Fire Baroque Orchestra, and the New York Collegium. Joanna is an avid chamber musician, performing and recording with the Catacoustic Consort, Ensemble Mirable, Music of the Spheres, Nota Bene Viol Consort, Parthenia, and Wildcat Viols. She has served as a classroom and private instructor at the University of Oregon and the Berwick Academy. Joanna holds performance degrees from the Cleveland Institute of Music and the Jacobs School of Music, where she earned a Performer's Certificate in early music performance.
Sarah Cunningham: I started playing consorts with my family when I was twelve, never dreaming that I would become a professional. In the Boston area, I studied with Gian Lyman Silbiger and Marleen Montgomery, and instantly knew this was how I must spend my life. Later I went to the Netherlands to work with Wieland Kuijken, then to Boston, to London, to Ireland; I co-founded Trio Sonnerie, and performed and recorded with Fretwork, the Dowland Consort, Phantasm, Les Filles de Sainte-Colombe, as well as other groups. My solo double CD, Play This Passionate, is still a favorite around the world. In 2009 I moved back to the US to help my parents, just when the Historical Performance program at Juilliard was starting up, and now I teach viol and consort there. My teaching helps develop a flexible technique that can express all the characters, moods, and stories that the music has to tell.
Amy Domingues performs on the cello, viola da gamba, and vielle. While she honed her ensemble skills early in her career as a session cellist, her study of the viol included masterclasses with Wieland Kuijken, Paolo Pandolfo, and Philippe Pierlot, and a master’s degree in Early Music from Peabody Conservatory. Amy performs on viola da gamba, baroque cello, and vielle with groups as varied as The Folger Consort, Hesperus, and The Washington Bach Consort. She is a founding member of Sonnambula, and the experimental duo Domingues & Kane. Amy is a recipient of an Arts and Humanities Fellowship Grant from the DC Commission of the Arts & Humanities, a Peabody Career Development Grant, and the VdGSA Grant in Aid. In addition to maintaining a private cello and viol studio, Ms. Domingues has served on faculty at the Madison Early Music Festival, the VdGSA Conclave, and many regional workshops. She appears on over 70 albums, and resides in Washington, DC with her husband and two cats.
David Ellis is a conductor, cellist, and viola da gambist, and has performed repertoire ranging from Renaissance to Contemporary. He received a Bachelor’s of Music degree in Cello performance, a Master’s of Music degree in Historical Performance, and a Master’s of Music degree in Orchestra Conducting, all from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. While at Oberlin, David studied with professors Raphael Jimenez, Tim Weiss, and Catharina Meints, and assembled and directed the Oberlin Baroque Orchestra. As a viola da gambist and baroque cellist, David has performed in many ensembles in Ohio and throughout the United States, including The Newberry Consort, Catacoustic, les soûls d’amour, Les Délices, Ampersand, Three Notch’d Road, The Bach Project, Apollo’s Fire, Burning River Baroque, and the Atlanta Baroque Orchestra. As a conductor, David directs the Case Camerata Chamber Orchestra and has served as the Executive and Artistic Director for Earth and Air: String Orchestra. He is a native of Solon, Ohio, and currently resides in Cleveland.
Pedro Funes-Whittington is the Assistant Orchestra Director at Woodcreek MS in Humble ISD and Director of Viols of the Creek (Woodcreek MS/Summer Creek HS Viol Ensemble). He received his Master's Degree in Early Music Performance at Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University where he studied viola gamba and vielle with Wendy Gillespie. He co-founded Les Touches in 2011, which was one of 10 finalists in the York Young Artist International Competition in 2015. He has been the Teaching Assistant for the Beginner Viols and Teen Beginner Class at Conclave and has been part of the faculty for the Summer Texas Toot. He has performed across Texas with Austin Baroque Orchestra (Principal Bass), Ars Lyrica, La Folia, Austin Troubadours, and Texas Early Music Project. Currently he is the President of Viols of Houston.
Wendy Gillespie was inexplicably attracted to polyphony before she knew the word and has played the viola da gamba for more than 50 years. She has performed on five continents, mostly as a founding member of the viol consort Fretwork and long-time member of Phantasm, but also as a bass viol soloist, and not least as a happy continuo player, more recently specializing in renaissance viols with the consort Nota Bene. Wendy received Early Music America’s Thomas Binkley Award in 2011 and the Wellesley College Alumnae Achievement Award in 2012. In the best of times, she is a Circuit Rider and teacher at loads of workshops all over the place. In 2017, after 32 years on the faculty of Indiana University, Bloomington IN, Gillespie graduated to Professor Emeritus, very grateful to be able to learn more about herself, her connection to the planet, life, the universe, and everything.
Patricia Halverson holds a doctoral degree in Early Music Performance Practice from
Stanford University. She studied viol with Martha McGaughey while at Stanford, and following
the completion of her D.M.A., continued her studies at the Koninklijk Conservatorium in The
Hague. A native of Duluth, Minnesota, Patty is a founding member of Chatham Baroque. Recent collaborations outside of Chatham Baroque include concerts with Four Nations, The Rose Ensemble, Empire Viols, J. S. Bach’s Brandenburg Sixth Concerto with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, and Bach Passion performances with Baldwin-Wallace University, the Buffalo Philharmonic, and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Patty has taught recorder and viol at summer workshops including the Madison Early Music Festival, Early Music Mideast, and the Viola da Gamba Society of America’s annual Conclave.
Julie Jeffrey has been playing the viol since 1976. She has performed throughout the U.S., in Canada, Mexico, Europe, and Australia, and teaches privately and at workshops in the U.S. and abroad. Ms. Jeffrey is a founding member of Sex Chordae Consort of Viols, Wildcat Viols, Antic Faces, and The Barefoot All-Stars, and she embodies half of the viol duo Hallifax & Jeffrey. Ms. Jeffrey is co-founder and co-director of Barefoot Chamber Concerts, and has served on the Board of Directors of the Viola da Gamba Society of America, the Pacifica Viola da Gamba Society, and the San Francisco Early Music Society.
Joshua Keller is an avid performer and teacher of viol, lirone, and cello. After studying viola da gamba with Wendy Gillespie and Hille Perl, he has performed in the early music festivals of Bruges, Bremen, Bloomington, Regensburg, Thüringen, Nashville, and in the opening ceremonies of the Utrecht Early Music Festival. Early and modern orchestras alike continue to invite him to play the viol parts of Bach’s Passions. He has worked with Opera Theater St. Louis, Opera Studio Netherlands, Opera NEO San Diego, and Scherzi Musicali (BE) playing lirone. He maintains a private teaching studio, teaches viol at the University of Memphis, and cello at the Memphis Music Academy. Joshua also maintains an active local music life playing in chamber ensembles and recording at local studios. He has recorded with Josh Lee, Masaaki Suzuki, and Música Ficta. Beyond music, Josh loves roller skating, practicing Pilates, and his two Boxers, Margot and Hiram.
Lawrence Lipnik has performed and recorded with many acclaimed early music ensembles. He is a founding member of the viol consort Parthenia and vocal ensemble Lionheart. In addition to performing, his busy teaching schedule has included early music performance instruction at Wesleyan University, collegium director at Amherst Early Music, national and international festivals including the Benslow Music Trust in the UK, co-director of the Viols West Workshop in San Luis Obispo, California, and Viol Sphere 2 in Tucson, Arizona. Recent performance highlights include concerts with lutenist Paul O’Dette of Dowland’s complete Lachrimae at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, concerts at the Venice Biennale and Berkeley Festival, appearances with the Venice Baroque Orchestra, Folger Consort, ARTEK, as well as early opera residencies at Carnegie Mellon University. He has served on the national and local boards of the VdGSA and is a contributor to The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare and Contemporary Dramatists, and The Cambridge Guide to the Worlds of Shakespeare.
Martha McGaughey studied with Jordi Savall and with Wieland Kuijken. She is a founding member of the New York-based Empire Viols, in residence at Second Presbyterian Church for almost 20 years, and Gold and Glitter, with violinist Daniel Lee and Baroque flutist Sang Joon Park. She has recorded for the Fonit Cetra, Erato, and EMI labels. She has twice been a Regents' Lecturer at the University of California. In 2015, she was a featured soloist with the China National Symphony in Beijing. She has taught at the Ecole Nationale de Musique in Angoulême (France), at Stanford University, and since 1986 at The Mannes College of Music, (College of Performing Arts, The New School) where she currently teaches Baroque Performance Practice as well as a Performance Workshop for ESL students. She also teaches English as a Second Language at Building One Community, the Center for Immigrant Opportunity, in Stamford, Connecticut.
Sarah Mead is a sought-after teacher of viol and Renaissance performance practice and has performed viol consort and solo lyra-viol music in the U.S., New Zealand, Australia, Japan, Brazil, and the UK. She served for seven years as Music Director of the annual VdGSA Conclave and edits a quarterly selection of music and commentary on both recent and historical works for viols for the Society. Her performing editions of historical and original works for viols are published by PRB Productions. In 2007 she received the Thomas Binkley Award from Early Music America for her work with the Early Music Ensemble at Brandeis University, where she is a Professor of the Practice of Music and has chaired the program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies. She is a founding member and the musical director of Nota Bene Viol Consort. Their 2020 CD of Pietro Vinci features a set of Brescian-style Renaissance viols.
Catharina Meints has enjoyed a distinguished career in music, performing, recording, and teaching on five different instruments all over the world. She was a cellist in the Cleveland Orchestra for 35 years and taught viol, baroque cello, modern cello and ensembles at Oberlin for over 40 years. She performed most often with the Oberlin Baroque Ensemble and the Oberlin Consort of Viols. She and her late husband, James Caldwell, collected antique viols and she enjoys making them available to players. Her book, “The Caldwell Collection of Viols” contains pictures, stories, and a CD of performances on each viol. She has enjoyed teaching many years at Conclave and was honored to serve on the Board of the VdGSA.
Heather Miller Lardin, an early bass specialist, is principal bassist of the Handel and Haydn Society and director of the Temple University Early Music Ensemble. Ms. Lardin is a regular member of the Philadelphia Bach Collegium and Tempesta di Mare. She serves on the faculties of the Amherst Early Music Festival and the Curtis Young Artists Summer Program and has been a guest violone instructor for Juilliard Historical Performance. In January 2021 she launched The Historical Bass Project, a three-month online immersion course in historical style for modern or period double bassists. Ms. Lardin co-directs Night Music, a Philadelphia-based period instrument chamber ensemble focused on music of the Revolutionary and Romantic eras. Night Music’s debut recording, “Music for a Viennese Salon” featuring works by Haydn, Kraus, and Dittersdorf was released by Avie Records in August 2020. A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, Ms. Lardin holds a DMA in Historical Performance Practice from Cornell University.
John Moran teaches viola da gamba, Baroque cello, and musicology at Peabody Conservatory and has a large private studio at home. He is delighted to be serving as President of the VdGSA. He studied modern and Baroque cello at Oberlin, where he was fortunate to get his foundation on the viol with Catharina Meints. He studied Baroque cello at the Schola Cantorum (Basel) with Hannelore Mueller and subsequently earned a PhD in musicology at King’s College London, where his advisor was Laurence Dreyfus, all the while practicing viol in secret. He is a member of REBEL and a principal player with the Washington Bach Consort. He has played all over the US and in Europe. With violinist Risa Browder, he co-directs Modern Musick, in residence at Georgetown University. He is passionate about consort music and helping musicians learn to teach themselves.
Rosamund Morley on treble, tenor and bass violas da gamba, and their medieval ancestors, has performed with many renowned early music ensembles as diverse as ARTEK, The Boston Camerata, The Crossing, Les Arts Florissants, Piffaro, the Venice Baroque Orchestra, and Sequentia. She is a member of Parthenia, New York's premiere consort of viols, with whom she plays early and contemporary music, and for many years she toured worldwide as a member of the Waverly Consort. She teaches online and at the Neighborhood Music School in New Haven and in her Brooklyn, NY studio. Beginning in 2017 Ros was Conclave Music Director, and her 4-year term culminated in the year of the Coronavirus with the creation of the first totally online VdGSA workshop.
David Morris has performed across the U.S., Canada, and Europe on Baroque violoncello, viola da gamba, lirone, and bass violin. He has played continuo for the Boston Early Music Festival’s opera productions since 2013 and is a member of Quicksilver, the Galax Quartet, and the Bertamo Trio. He is a frequent guest performer on the New York State Early Music Association and Pegasus Early Music series and has performed with Tafelmusik, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Seattle’s Pacific MusicWorks, and the Mark Morris Dance Group. He has produced operas for the Berkeley Early Music Festival and the SF Early Music Society series and has been a guest instructor in early music performance practice at Cornell University, Amherst College, Oberlin College, the University of Colorado at Boulder, UC Berkeley, and the SF Conservatory of Music. He has recorded for Harmonia Mundi, New Albion, Dorian, Drag City Records, CBC/Radio-Canada, and New Line Cinema.
Patricia Ann Neely has appeared with many early music ensembles and taught at many early music workshops. Most recent appearances include, the Smithsonian Viol Consort, the Washington Bach Consort, and Abendmusik. She was a founding member of Parthenia, spent three years touring with Sequentia, and participated in festivals in Utrecht, Berlin, Regensberg, Berkeley, Vancouver, and Boston. Pat was on the music faculty of The Brearley School for 25 years teaching double bass, recorder, and an early music string ensemble. She holds degrees from Vassar College (BA music) and Sarah Lawrence College (MFA – Historical Performance) and has recorded for many labels including Musical Heritage, Deutsche Harmonia Mundi, Erato, and Lyrichord. Pat is a member of the Board of the VdGSA and chair of the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee (EDI) and is on the Board of Early Music America and Chair of the Early Music America Taskforce on Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access (IDEA).
Sarah Poon began her love affair with the viola da gamba during her years in the University of British Columbia’s Bachelor of Music program where she majored in Violoncello Performance. In non-COVID times, she is an enthusiastic member of the Vancouver viol scene, running small workshops, playing for church services and concerts, and playing consort music for the sheer pleasure of it. A former member of the Conclave management team (Team SPoon), Sarah’s favourite time of the year is Conclave week, where she considers all the attendees family. Sarah is an active cello and viol teacher and the manager and cellist for the Grace Notes String Quartet. Sarah lives in Gibsons, BC, with her organist husband and four young children.
Elisabeth Reed teaches viola da gamba and Baroque cello at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where she is co-director of the Baroque Ensemble. Recent teaching highlights include master classes at the Juilliard School, the Shanghai Middle School, the Royal Academy of Music, and the National Viola da Gamba Society Conclave. A soloist and chamber musician with Voices of Music, Archetti, Pacific Musicworks, and Wildcat Viols, she has also appeared with the Smithsonian Chamber Players, American Bach Soloists, and the Seattle, Portland, Pacific, and Philharmonia Baroque Orchestras. She can be heard on the Virgin Classics, Naxos, Focus, Plectra, and Magnatunes recording labels and has many HD videos on the Voices of Music Youtube channel. She also teaches viola da gamba and Baroque cello at the University of California at Berkeley. She is a Guild-certified practitioner of the Feldenkrais Method of Awareness Through Movement.
Mary Springfels is a veteran of the American early music movement. She began her long career as a member of the New York Pro Musica, and is still performing with the Folger Consort, Ars Lyrica (Houston), the Texas Early Music Project (Austin), and co-directs Severall Friends, a flexible collection of performers based in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Mary has been active in the VdGSA Circuit Rider program and has been a faculty member at Conclaves for decades.
Marie Dalby Szuts performs on and teaches viola da gamba in the SF Bay Area and around the country. Before moving back to her native California, she spent over a decade living on the east coast, where she performed as a member of the New York Consort of Viols and various other groups. While completing a degree in medieval history at Yale University, she was on the teaching faculty of the Neighborhood Music School in New Haven, CT; she is also a founding member of Quaver viol consort, which has appeared at multiple VdGSA Conclaves. Marie was President of the VdGSA from 2012 to 2016. By day, she is the Chief People Officer at Human Capital, a venture capital firm in San Francisco.
Lisa Terry is an avid chamber music performer and soloist on viola da gamba and violoncello. From her home base in New York City, she performs with Parthenia, Dryden Ensemble, Lyra Consort, Pegasus Early Music, and TENET. She is principal cellist and viol soloist with Tempesta di Mare, Philadelphia’s baroque orchestra. Lisa was a founding member of ARTEK, and has performed with the New York Philharmonic, New York City Opera, Juilliard Opera Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, and Concert Royal. She has appeared to great acclaim as soloist in the Passions of J.S. Bach throughout her career, and she serves the Viola da Gamba Society of America as Past-President. She is often heard in dance bands for Country Dance New York.
Emily Walhout grew up playing the cello and piano, but it was not until college that she discovered her love for baroque bass lines. At Oberlin Conservatory she took up baroque cello and viola da gamba, thus launching an active career in early music. She was a founding member of La Luna, an ensemble of two violins and continuo devoted to music of the 17th century, and of The King’s Noyse, a Renaissance violin band. She has played viola da gamba, lirone, or principal cello for the Boston Early Music Festival, Emmanuel Music, the Handel & Haydn Society, Seattle Baroque, Portland Baroque, New York Collegium, Trinity Consort (Portland, Oregon), Les Violons du Roy, Les Boréades (Montreal), Montreal Baroque Festival, Les Bostonades, TENET, and the Green Mountain Project. Current chamber ensembles include Les Délices (Cleveland) and Nota Bene Consort of Viols. Her playing has been described as “soulful and expressive” by The New York Times.
Zoe Weiss is a musicologist and performer who believes passionately in music’s ability to forge human connections. She recently completed her Ph.D. at Cornell University where she wrote a dissertation on material and musical networks in the Elizabethan In Nomine tradition. Zoe performs widely on viol as both a soloist and chamber musician. A founding member of LeStrange Viols, Science Ficta, and the Folk Baroque Trio, she plays regularly with the Oberlin Consort of Viols and the Smithsonian Consort of Viols. Zoe has taught viol at workshops for the Amherst Early Music Festival and the Viola da Gamba Society of America and served two terms on the Board of Directors for the VdGSA. She is currently on the editorial board for The Journal of the VdGSA. Her recordings with LeStrange Viols and ACRONYM can be heard on the New Focus label.
Brent Wissick has been teaching at VdGSA Conclaves since 1979 and served as President of the Society from 2000-04. He is Professor of Music at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and has performed and taught throughout North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia; and can be heard on numerous recordings.