After receiving his bachelor’s degree in Piano Performance from the Eastman School of Music under Nelita True, James Kucera attended the California Institute of the Arts in Los Angeles. During this time, he was the recipient of several awards, including first prize in the national Elizabeth Harper Vaughn Concerto Competition in Kingsport, Tenn.
Kucera has taught at Plaza de la Raza, a performing arts school for young students in the greater Los Angeles area and currently performs and teaches in various venues in Columbus. He serves as pianist for the Mountview Baptist Church in Upper Arlington and as an accompanist for SNAP!, a musical revue group.
Dr. Stephanie Webster Cheng
Dr. Stephanie Webster-Cheng enjoys an active career as an educator, collaborative pianist, and accompanist in Columbus, Ohio. Stephanie, an Interlochen Arts Academy alumni, graduated in 2000 from Lawrence University with a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance. She continued her music studies in ethnomusicology (the study of music and culture) at the University of Pittsburgh, graduating with a MA in 2003 and a PhD in 2008. Her piano teachers have included Dr. Michael Coonrod (Interlochen Arts Academy), Dr. Michael Kim (Lawrence University) and Dr. Anthony Padilla (Lawrence University).
Stephanie has over 20 years experience teaching private piano lessons to students in Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Ohio. She started SWC Piano in Upper Arlington in 2017. Stephanie also has experience teaching college level group piano and World Music courses (University of Pittsburgh).
Stephanie has played with church worship bands and professionally as a church pianist for over 13 years. She also has accompanied many instrumental and vocal soloists and ensembles both at the high school and college level.
Stephanie is an active member of the Ohio Federation of Music Clubs, the Central East District of the Ohio MTNA, and the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA).
Just for fun
When not teaching, Stephanie enjoys learning new pieces by her favorite composers, Bach, Beethoven and Chopin. She also has a passion for tap dancing and beautifying the natural environment through gardening. Her main job outside of teaching is chauffeuring her three busy children to and from their many activities.
Carol Jeckavitch, a native of Johnstown, PA, has sung with Capriccio Columbus since 2013 and became its music librarian in 2014.
Carol is a retired music educator, directing choral activities at Salem High School, in Salem, Ohio for 30 years before retiring to Columbus with husband and fellow Capriccio member, Jeff, to be nearer to their children and grandchildren.
Ellen Moore Griffin
Ellen Moore Griffin has been a member of Capriccio Columbus since 2009, serving as board secretary before assuming her current role as Managing Director, overseeing all administrative aspects of managing the chorus, including internal and external communications, scheduling, grant writing, program design and layout, and website management.
Mrs. Griffin, a Columbus native and graduate of Groveport-Madison High School, holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Ohio University. She has extensive administrative management experience in the arts (Players Theatre Columbus) and government (Governor Celeste’s office and the Ohio Building Authority). In 1992, she was hired as the assistant director of Community Crime Patrol, a local, non-profit, crime prevention organization based in the University District, and assumed the executive director position in 2001.
BRIANNA BIZZARO graduated from Ohio Northern University with a Bachelor of Music Education and holds a Master’s Degree in Library Science from Clarion University. Bizzaro’s prior teaching experiences include a student teaching placement in Valencia, Spain, three and a half years at and International Baccalaureate School in Columbia, SC, and three years teaching 7th & 8th grade choirs in Mansfield, OH. She is currently the Head of the Choral Department at Marysville Exempted School District where she directs 4 ensembles, assists the middle school in both choir and show choir, and is the Musical Director for the High School Musicals. She is an active member of Ohio Music Education Association, Ohio Choral Directors Association, and American Choral Directors Association.
Dr. Collin Richardson
Most recently, Collin Richardson served as University Organist and Assistant Professor in the Department of Music at Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia where he taught organ, piano, music theory, piano methods and accompanied the university choral ensembles. A native of Cincinnati, Mr. Richardson earned the Bachelor of Arts Degree in music at Morehouse College in Atlanta. Collin continued his music studies in earning the Master of Music Degree in Organ Performance from Emory University and the Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Organ Performance with additional studies in piano pedagogy from the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati. He currently serves as director of choral activities at Linden-McKinley High School in Columbus.
Karrie Horton has earned a reputation as an extremely versatile vocal performer, conductor and educator. She has served as director of vocal music at New Albany High School for the past 22 years and musical theater vocal coach at St. Charles Preparatory School since 1991.
Horton is familiar to many in Columbus as soprano soloist at St. Joseph Cathedral, former director of Worthington Songsters, and lead singer for Buckeye Brass, a jazz band. She has performed with Opera Columbus, backed up Celine Dion and Gladys Knight and sung commercial jingles.
A member of the Ohio Music Education Association and the Ohio Choral Directors Association, Horton earned her master’s degree from VanderCook College of Music and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Ohio State University. She has continued with graduate work in Theatre Education at Akron University.
Larry Griffin is well known and widely respected among Central Ohio’s music educators and conductors. From 1991 until his retirement in 2013, he was director of choral music at Worthington Kilbourne High School. He formerly led the St Charles Preparatory School’s men’s ensemble and the Mansfield Symphony Chorus. He currently teaches voice privately in his home studio and serves as music director for Opera Columbus’ “The Journey”.
A past president of the Ohio Music Education Association, Griffin has served in many OMEA events as an adjudicator, director of honors choir festivals and clinician. In 2005, the Columbus Symphony Orchestra presented him with the Secondary School Music Educator Award.
From 2001 to 2003, Griffin directed Vaud-Villities. He has served a number of Greater Columbus churches as a choral director and soloist.
Griffin holds a Master of Music degree from The Ohio State University, where he studied conducting with Hilary Apfelstadt. He received his Bachelor of Music Education degree from Eastern Kentucky University, and has done graduate work at Ohio State and Wright State University.
Evan T. McIntyre holds a Master of Music in Music Education from Capital University, and his Bachelor of Music Education and Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education from Otterbein University. He has his Kodály Certification from the Kodály Institute at Capital University and his Orff-Schulwerk Levels 1 and 2 from Baldwin Wallace University. He is currently working on his Doctorate of Philosophy in Music Education at The Ohio State University. McIntyre currently teaches general music at McVay Elementary School in the Westerville City Schools, where he was named 2014-2015 Educator of the Year, and serves as the children’s music director at New Albany United Methodist Church.
Amy Ruff graduated from Otterbein College earning a bachelor’s degree in music education, a bachelor’s degree in vocal performance, and a minor in dance. She earned her master’s degree in music education and Kodaly certification from Capital University. Past singing as a member includes, Choral Union at Capital University and Capriccio Columbus. She previously assisted with Kinderchor Choirs, Central College Presbyterian Youth Choir, and the OCDA Children’s Choir. She served as an R & S Middle School Chair for the Ohio Choral Directors Association and has presented for the Ohio Music Education Association. She previously taught vocal and general music at Gahanna Middle School East and Liberty High School. Mrs. Ruff currently teaches vocal music at Olentangy Liberty Middle School.
Alyson Bates has extensive experience with youth choirs. She taught vocal and instrumental music in Switzerland of Ohio Local, Groveport Madison Local, and Worthington City school districts and served as a staff member of Kinderchor of Ohio and Con Brio Children and Youth Choirs. A member of the Ohio Music Education Association and the Ohio Choral Directors Association, she currently also is the vocal director for Worthington Kilbourne High School musicals. Bates holds a master’s degree in Education Administration from Ashland University and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Otterbein University.