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Violin Player
STRINGS FACULTY
Fox River Academy has a professional, committed, and diverse string faculty. We have instructors who are trained in traditional classical instruction, Celtic/Folk, Suzuki, jazz, and other styles. Members are also performing artists who inspire their pupils by their musical experience and commitment to the arts. 
Ranan Antonini
Ranan Antonini

VIOLIN INSTRUCTOR

Ranan Antonini began his violin studies at age 13 with the Suzuki method orientated by the violinist Andreia Carizzi (Suassuna String Quartet) in Teresópolis, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He made his debut one year later playing at the 97th anniversary of the Municipal Theater as a Suzuki Student from the Teresópolis First Baptist Church School of Music. He was then one of the first violinists to attend the Teresa Cristina Camerata, the first-string ensemble group of Teresópolis. After that, as a professional violinist, he participated in the Brazilian Symphony Orchestra, Brazilian Youth Symphony Orchestra, State Espirito Santo Symphony Orchestra, and Cesgranrio Symphony Orchestra. In addition, he has participated in national and international festivals for over 10 years including Campos do Jordão International Music Festival, Brazil; Villa-Lobos Music Festival, Venezuela; Arianna Chamber Music Festival, USA; Santa Catarina Music Festival, Brazil; Villa-Lobos Chamber Music Festival, Brazil and others.

 

He has been named in master classes with well-known violinists such as Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, Shmuel Ashkenasi, Latino American String Quartet, Giora Schmidt, Rebekka Hartman, Linus Roth, Andres Cardenes, Chouchane Siranossian.

 

Other than classical music, he has also performed with famous popular Brazilian names such as Geraldo Azevedo, Yamandú Costa, Hamilton de Holanda, Marcelo Caldi, André Mehmari, José Stanek, and others. He has his name on the CD and DVD “Contra Ponto 3,” the third edition of MPB (Brazilian Popular Music) songs, produced by Paulo Jobim, and Aloisio Didier.       He was awarded a B.M. in violin from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro instructed by Professor Daniel Guedes. Most recently, he completed his Master’s degree and Performance Certificate in violin performance at Northern Illinois University, Dekalb, IL under the direction of Mathias Tacke. Ranan has been a violin teacher for many years for all ages and levels. He has 10 years of experience and has taught at one of the most important Social Music Projects for young people in Brazil named Social Action for Music. Currently, he has been playing with the Rockford Symphony Orchestra in Rockford, IL, and teaching General Music at Huntley Middle School in the Dekalb district. Ranan is a Bell Director at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Dekalb, and he also works at String Works with violin recordings/Instructions, in Geneva, IL.

Cassandra Tosh
Cassandra Tosh

VIOLIN/VIOLA INSTRUCTOR

Cassandra is a violist and violinist from Indianapolis, Indiana. She completed her Master’s degree in Music at Butler University studying viola performance with Richard Auldon Clark, while performing her duties as the Graduate Assistant to the Butler Symphony Orchestra and principal viola. She also composed a string trio under the guidance of Clark in the spring of 2020 during her Bachelor’s degree studies. In 2022, she won the Principal Viola position and solo for the ballet Giselle.

 

Cassandra has performed in a variety of settings, including chamber, ballet, opera, and theatre. She is the principal violist of the Fox Valley Orchestra, and especially enjoys playing viola in the Woomblies Rock Orchestra, based in Indianapolis. Cassandra began teaching private violin and viola lessons in 2013.

She enjoys teaching students of all ages and ability, and emphasizes a balance of fun and structure. Cassandra tailors the repertoire, pace, and intensity of her lessons to the goals and needs of each student, understanding that each one is different. When possible, she likes to incorporate theory and ear training. Her primary goals are creating well-rounded students that never lose their passion for playing music. Ms. Tosh also enjoys teaching a wide variety of genres, including Celtic and Bluegrass, and likes to encourage her students to explore different styles.
 

Besides teaching music, she plays guitar and is a passionate artist and power-lifter in her free time.

April Kinsella
April Kinsella

VIOLIN INSTRUCTOR

With over 15 years of experience teaching violin students of many ages and skill levels, April has always been excited to see students light up when they work through and master musical pieces. This love and passion for music is what has kept her involved to this day. It is this joy that students feel when they master musical technique while building confidence in their musicianship that April strives for. Having played the violin and accordion as a small child, she proudly chose the instrument that sang to her heart; violin. Ms. Kinsella studied for many years through the Suzuki method under instructor Mary Smelser, and gained valuable ensemble experience performing violin in the Joliet All City Orchestra and the Chicago Youth Symphony. She branched out into contemporary music by playing in a vocal/orchestral ensemble called The New People under director Richard Siegel. Additionally, April has extensive experience performing and instructing on various solo literature, ILMEA state, operettas, musicals, and for church services in the Joliet area.  April has a liberal arts degree from Joliet Junior College as well as a Bachelors in Arts from Harrington College in Chicago. She taught private violin lessons in Yorkville for many years under director Kim Gyssler. April’s certifications as a state and NCLB Approved Paraprofessional has allowed her to work with pre-school and grade school students at Parkview Christian Academy, and the YMCA preschool in Plano IL. Additionally, April is certified with St. Patrick’s church in Yorkville IL as a Faith Formation Teacher, and has also worked with adults through teaching water aerobics at YMCA in Plano and River Run in Oswego.

Crystal Schneckenberger
Crystal Schneckberger

VIOLIN/VIOLA INSTRUCTOR (ONLINE)

A native of Golden, Colorado, Crystal Schneckenburger is a classically trained violinist. She has a great love of orchestral music and loves historical playing and has experimented with period instruments. She enjoys chamber music and has played with numerous types of ensembles, including string quartets, violin quartets, string trios, piano trios and violin piano duos. In addition, she has performed with the Colorado Korean Chorus and premiered new music at the Pendulum New Music concert series, a concert series designed for up-and-coming composers.


After seeing her cousin, a professional fiddler, perform in New England, Crystal begged her parents for a violin and began playing at age seven. A Suzuki child herself and a love of kids has led her to teach private music lessons to students of various ages and Crystal has been teaching violin since the age of sixteen. She currently has students through the Fox River Academy of Music and Art and the West Denver Suzuki Strings program.


In addition to Colorado, Crystal has performed in Chicago as well as in Italy with the Florentia Consort Program. She studied with Ann Setzer and Carolyn Stuart for her Masters of Music from DePaul University. She received her Bachelor of Music at University of Colorado at Boulder with high honors where she studied with Harumi Rhodes and Lina Bahn. Previous teachers include Allegra Wermuth, Robyn Sosa and Laura Barnette. In addition to playing the violin, Crystal enjoys reading, knitting, hiking and spending time with friends and family including two dogs.

Emma Foreman
Emma Foreman

CELLO INSTRUCTOR (ONLINE)

Emma picked up the cello at the age of 12 after playing the piano for nearly seven years and never looked back. She was a student of Hans Jørgen Jensen of Northwestern University and has taken additional substantive lessons with Andrea LaFranzo, Oleksa Mycyk, Sihao He, Melissa Kraut, Alan Rafferty, Sterling Elliott, Tom Landschoot, and Wei Yu.

 

She performed for Richard Aaron of Juilliard in a solo masterclass and has received substantive chamber music coaching from Mathias Tacke, Charles Pikler, Gerardo Ribeiro, Anna Burden, Shmuel Ashkenasi, and members of The Lincoln Trio. Emma has also attended various programs and festivals, including the Chicago Chamber Music Festival, Birch Creek Summer Music Academy, the International Academy of Music (Italy), the Aronson Cello Festival, the Ascent Chamber Music Festival, and the Meadowmount School of Music.

 

She is attending Miami University, where she is to receive her Bachelor of Music in Cello Performance and her Bachelor of Arts, studying Italian language and culture in the spring of 2024. Emma is affluent in solo and ensemble playing, as she has been a member of several orchestras, including Midwest Young Artists Conservatory, Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra, and Youth Symphony of DuPage. She is a current member of the Miami University Symphony Orchestra. Additionally, she has subbed in the Kankakee Valley Symphony and the Fermi Community Orchestra. Her love for ensemble does not stop with orchestra and is reflected by the many chamber groups and experiences she has had. Emma has participated in both solo and chamber competitions including, but not limited to, the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition, Discover Competition, Walgreens Concerto Competition, the Morpheus Chamber Competition, and the Youth Symphony of DuPage Concerto competition, where she won first place.

 

As Emma continues her collegiate training as a student of Dr. Sarah Kim at Miami University, she receives the maximum music department talent scholarship, academic scholarships, and several cello-specific awards.

Bob Ferrraris
Bob Ferraris

BASS INSTRUCTOR

With over 40 years of experience on acoustic and electric bass, Bob Ferraris consistently demonstrates uncommon versatility and musical energy. A native of Joliet, IL., Bob began his musical journey initially on alto saxophone before switching to bass. Since then he has studied with Ted Sparks (Stan Kenton Orchestra), Harold Siegal (Chicago Symphony Orchestra and NBC radio and television), Warren Benfield (Chicago Symphony Orchestra), Brad Opland (Chicago Symphony Orchestra), and Joe Guastafeste, Principle of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

Beginning in 1985, Bob was selected to co-principle the bass section in the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and held the position for four years. Previously, he worked as a staff musician for Disneyland and performed with Clark Terry and other notable jazz artists.

Bob studied music at Northern University, University of Illinois, and Lewis University, and is presently on staff at Lewis University as an instructor for string and electric bass, directing their Bass Ensemble and working with pep band, jazz combo, and as lower string coach. Bob is also a busy freelance musician and performs and records frequently with a vast array of ensembles including the Rockford Symphony, Northwest Indiana Symphony and the New Philharmonic, ensemble in residence at McAninch Arts Center at the College of DuPage.

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