Merrick School of Music Team
Where the Passion Begins
Joel Rosenwasser holds a Master's Degree in Music from the Manhattan School of Music and completed further post-graduate studies at the University of Iowa. He is an award-winning concert pianist and recording artist.
Joel's teaching experience runs the gamut from elementary school thru college. Many of his former students were admitted to leading conservatories and have continued on to professional careers in the arts.
Bernadette Tornabene is a NYS certified teacher who has been teaching in the school system for over 20 years. She holds both my BM and MA degree in Music Education, and Jazz guitar was her major instrument in college. Her system of guitar training includes work in music reading, music theory, fretboard navigation, pick-control and fingerstyle techniques, and ear-training applicable to most contemporary styles of music.
Marty Scott is a Jazz trombonist from Freeport, New York. Scott is a SUNY Purchase graduate with a Bachelor's degree in Jazz Performance in 2022. As of Fall 2022, Scott is a Masters student at the Manhattan School of Music. He was introduced around his early teenage years to Jazz music in middle school, which has impacted his life immensely. He has played alongside many skilled and admirable musicians at venues like The Blue Note, Birdland Jazz Club, Dizzy's Club, The Jazz Loft, and others. Scott has taught music to children at summer camps across North America, performed in many kinds bands, recorded different musical genres, and continues to share his love of the Jazz Art form.
Marguerite Galopin is a New York City resident and recent college graduate. Marguerite has been trained in ballet since childhood and has attended prestigious summer intensive programs at the Paris Opera Ballet School, Bolshoi Ballet, and American Ballet Theater. In addition to her ballet training, throughout her four years in college Marguerite has been able to expand on her jazz dance skills as well as musical theater dance style and choreography. For the past two summers she has taught dance and musical theater at Camp Lochearn for girls and now looks forward to bringing her love of dance to Merrick School of Music.
Allie Michaelis is a NYS certified teacher who obtained her B.M in Music Education from Long Island University, and is on a track to receive her M.A. in Music and Music Education in May 2023 from Teachers College, Columbia University. During her time at LIU she performed in various ensemble groups, and received opportunities to perform abroad in countries such as Australia, Spain, and Canada. She is also a member and board director of Huntington Choral Society. Allie is eager and excited to share her love and passion for music with her students!
T.J. Morash is a senior at Calhoun High School where he plays alto saxophone in Calhoun’s wind ensemble and rock band. He participates in NYSSMA festivals each year and will conclude his NYSSMA journey this year by participating in level 6 jazz NYSSMA for saxophone. T.J. is a member of the youth group at Curé of Ars. He is looking forward to sharing his love of music at the Merrick School of Music where he will offer saxophone lessons to beginners at the school.
Arielle Murray is a NYS certified early childhood teacher, receiving her MST from Fordham University. She also studied music and attained a BA in music from Fordham University Lincoln Center. As a lifelong musician, Arielle has been studying music since she was 7 years old, playing the violin for over 16 years throughout grade school and into college, performing in various festivals and adjudications including LISFA and NYSSMA.
Arielle has also been studying piano for 7 years. Last year she performed her senior piano recital after receiving her senior diploma from the National Piano Associates. She continues her piano studies, branching into pedagogy and the organ, with international pianist Nelson Ojeda Valdés who is based in New York City.
Angelica Rivera is a sophomore speech pathology student at St. John's university. She has been a parishioner at Cure of Ars since she was born and has loved music for just as long. Angelica has played the clarinet for ten years and participated in band throughout her schooling. She is happy to be able to share her knowledge of music with children.
Byron Perez-Chacon is a trumpet Performance and Music Education major at the Aaron Copland School of Music, Queens College; where he studies with Frank Huber. He began playing the Trumpet at the age of nine in the Baldwin School District under various teachers, including Scott Dunn; Director of Bands at Baldwin Senior High School and Music Director/Conductor of the Long Island Youth Orchestra (LIYO). Through Scott’s insight and passion in conducting and trombone, Byron discovered his calling as an orchestral trumpet player. Byron also earned his Associates Degree in Performing Arts at Nassau Community College, where he studied trumpet performance under Douglas Coleman; alumni of SUNY Potsdam Crane and the Manhattan School of Music. He specializes in various aspects and styles of playing including classical/orchestral, jazz, big band, chamber music, brass quintet, solo playing, and more. Presently, he is involved with the Queens College Orchestra, Symphonic Wind Ensemble, and Chamber Orchestra. Byron is also an advocate for interdisciplinary and collaborative arts and has premiered works for the New Music Group and performs for their Composers Workshop at Queens College. Byron teaches Trumpet and all other Brass instruments.
"I am a sophomore at Providence College, majoring in Music with a concentration in Musical Theatre. I am so excited to be sharing my love of music at the Merrick School of Music! I teach Flute and Vocal (Musical Theatre/Pop) private lessons for beginners and intermediates. I primarily work with older kids, but will work with all ages. I am available to begin in person lessons this summer but will have to continue lessons virtually at the end of August when I return to Providence."
"I am a Merrick native. I am excited to be working at the Merrick School of Music! I have been involved with the Youth Choir at Curé of Ars Church in various capacities for over 20 years. I enjoy the “behind the scenes” aspect of running groups, and I am looking forward to meeting more talented musicians. During the day, I am a social worker in a nursing home, having earned a Masters in Social Work from Fordham University. I also enjoy spending time with my two cats and mini goldendoodle."
Vladimir Tiagunov is a highly accomplished musician with a passion for piano performance and education. As the Founder and Director of the Merrick School of Music, he has dedicated his career to helping students of all ages and skill levels reach their full potential in music.
With a wealth of experience as a soloist and chamber musician, Tiagunov has performed extensively throughout Europe and the United States. He has received critical acclaim for his interpretations of works by Schubert, Chopin, Beethoven, and other composers, and has recorded numerous concerts for posterity.
In addition to his performing career, Tiagunov is also a respected music educator and competition judge. He has served on the jury for several international music competitions, including the prestigious International Piano Competition at Gould Academy, the Long Island Conservatory Soloist Competition, the International Online Music Competition "Universal Music Space", and the Manolov International Music Competition. He is known for his ability to inspire and motivate students, and has helped many young musicians achieve success in their own careers.
Tiagunov's dedication to music has also led him to work with Steinway and Sons, representing the company at showcases and events throughout New York. He is committed to promoting the importance of music in our lives, and believes that everyone should have the opportunity to experience the joy and beauty of this art form.
Whether performing on stage, teaching in the classroom, or judging competitions, Vladimir Tiagunov is a true professional and a passionate advocate for music. His talent and dedication have made him a respected figure in the music world, and his contributions to the art form will continue to inspire and enrich the lives of others for years to come.