Gillian Sheppard; Founder & Program Director
Born and raised in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Gillian has studied with flute teachers from across North America. Currently a student at the world renowned Royal College of Music in London, UK, Gillian is working on a one-year Artist Diploma program. She is the first student in the history of the Royal College to major in piccolo.
With a Masters of Music from Memorial University and a Bachelors of Music from the University of Ottawa, Gillian has had the great fortune of studying with several highly influential teachers, including: Michelle Cheramy, Camille Churchfield, Robert Cram, Kathleen Rudolph, Leslie Newman, Ian Clarke, Robert Langevin, Jim Walker, and Jeanne Baxtresser. Gillian’s principal teacher in London is Stewart McIlwham, piccoloist of the London Philharmonic Orchestra, however she also studies piccolo with Kathleen Stevenson of the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and takes flute lessons from renowned soloist Susan Milan. Gillian is thrilled to be the principal piccoloist with the Royal College of Music Symphony Orchestra, as well as flutist in the Contemporary Ensemble and Wind Orchestra this season.
Gillian’s musical interests include orchestral and solo playing, with special focus on the wide & varied world of contemporary music. Gillian likes to experiment with making new and interesting sounds on the flute, not excluding playing the flute whilst beat boxing! Gillian also enjoys community music-making and is a member & band manager (on leave) of the Eastern Wind Ensemble, as well as being a regular face in the “pit orchestras” of many operas and musical theatre shows staged in her hometown of St. John’s.
Ashley Sheppard; Head of Education
Ashley Sheppard, a native of St. John’s, Newfoundland, has had a strong interest in conducting since high school. As a music educator with a passion for ensemble performance, Ashley has performed with the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra, the National Concert Band of Canada and the MUN Concert and Jazz Bands.
In addition to her ensemble performance experiences Ashley was an active solo performer. She holds certificates from the Royal Conservatory of Music for Grade 8 clarinet and Grade 10 piano. She was an active performer in the Kiwanis Music Festival. She has operated a private teaching studio for over 10 years, teaching students of all ages and levels in piano, clarinet, saxophone and music theory. Her students have competed in the Kiwanis Music Festival and completed RCM examinations.
Ashley’s early conducting experiences came while working with small church wind ensembles and she has since gone on to conduct concerts with the St. Bonaventure’s College Wind Ensemble, Eastern School District Band, Orchestre à Vents Non Identifié (OVNI, Montreal) and the McGill Wind Symphony. Past conducting teachers include Donald Buell, Alain Cazes, Alexis Hauser and Vernon Regehr. Ashley as also attended workshops with renowned conductors Jason Caslor, Marc David, Paula Holcomb, Craig Kirchhoff, Fraser Linklater Dale Lonis, and Tim Reynish.
Ashley holds two degrees from Memorial University of Newfoundland – a Bachelor’s degree in music, where she studied clarinet with Paul Bendzsa and Lorne Buick and a Bachelor of Music Education. She also holds a Master’s in Instrumental Conducting from McGill University.
Ashley is currently the Director of the Eastern Wind Ensemble, in St. John’s. She also operates a private teaching studio and is a music teacher with the Eastern School District.
Rozalind MacPhail; Flute instructor
Rozalind MacPhail’s music is in a genre of it’s own, that of sound painting.
She seamlessly blends organic instrumentation, such as the flute, voice, guitar, toy instruments, omnichord and electronics by way of an intricate looping system she built through the aid of Ableton Live and her MacBook. MacPhail’s music is modern but also rooted in traditional songwriting – a perfect blend between the past, present and future. She has managed to distill a lifetime of experience travelling across the country into a number of very personal and emotionally affecting songs. Her life on the road, with all its joys and hardships, is in plain view for all to see.
This Toronto Island raised flower-child sang and danced throughout her childhood for anyone who would listen. The flute came into Rozalind’s life at the age of thirteen, after her grandmother read an article about how playing the flute helped asthmatics learn how to control their breathing better. In fact, it did.
“Rozalind MacPhail, St. John’s troubadour flutist, best flute on both coasts.” Wavelength Music Series
Michela Comparey, trumpet instructor
Sabrina Perry, violin instructor
Naomi Brown, violin instructor
Johanna Jabora-Scott, piano instructor
I have a Master’s degree in Performance and Literature from the University of Western Ontario under the instruction of Fiona Wilkinson. I completed my Bachelor of Music at Memorial University of Newfoundland, studying under Dr. Michelle Cheramy and Dr. Mihoko Watanabe. I am very excited to teach the flute studio at Memorial University for the 2012-2013 year.
I moved to St. John’s from Toronto in September 2011. While living in Toronto, I worked at the Merriam School of Music – flute/piano/theory teacher and Department Head of Woodwind, Brass, and Strings. With my unique background of teaching and administrative work, my teaching style has become efficient, effective, structured, goal-oriented, thorough, and resourceful. I believe in approaching lessons holistically using different learning styles and areas to really ensure success, and most importantly, enjoyment in lessons. For more information on my teaching philosophy, click here.
I have played in various ensembles and orchestras, as well as many solo performances. I enjoy teaching and performing a wide variety of music, always inspired to learn new things.
Carole Bestvater, violin instructor
Chantelle Jubenville, violin instructor
Ayla Boz, violin instructor
Rachel Gauntlett, violin instructor
Katie Barrett; Trumpet instructor
Danielle Greene; Violin instructor
Naomi Kavka; Cello instructor
Dr. Nathan Cook; Cello instructor