Kate Webb Berk, Director of Fairmount Dance Company & Dance Faculty
Kate dances professionally with Verb Ballets in Cleveland. Originally from Richmond, Virginia, she danced as a company trainee with Richmond Ballet. She then attended Butler University where she graduated cum laude with a BS in Dance-Arts Administration and high departmental honors. Seeing her students improve is one of her favorite things! She is deeply passionate about helping children experience personal growth by finding their own artistic connections.
Saundra Bohl, Dance Faculty & Spanish Dance Artistic Director
Saundra Bohl studied ballet at the Ballet Arts of Carnegie Hall and the Metropolitan Company in New York. She has a BA in Math and Music from Oberlin College and a Masters in Education from John Carroll University.
Emily Dietz, Dance Faculty
Emily grew up in California, training at the Western Ballet. As her love for dance grew, Emily attended summer programs with the American Ballet Theatre School, Colorado Ballet and American Ballet Repertory Ballet. She continued her dance education at Butler University, graduating with a BS in Dance Arts Administration. Emily has been dancing professionally with Verb Ballets since 2018.
Sabrina Lindhout, Dance Faculty
Sabrina began dancing at the age of 4, and was accepted as a member of the pre-professional program, Ashland Regional Ballet, when she was 12. She studied at summer programs with Magnus (Joffrey) Midwest, Orlando Ballet, Cincinnati Ballet, and BalletMet in Columbus, OH. She performed as a guest dancer in Ohio Dance Theatre’s and Verb Ballets’ first collaborative production of The Nutcracker and was a guest dancer with Verb for their Heinz Poll repertoire for their 2015-16 season. She then joined Verb Ballets as a trainee for their 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons. Sabrina is now a Company B member with Inlet Dance Theatre- known for their modern dance technique and non-traditional partnering style.
Mo Liu, Dance Faculty
From Xi’an, China, Liu Mo trained at the renowned Beijing Dance Academy from middle school through college. He received a degree in Classical Chinese dance with a focus in performance and education. During this time, he received 3rd place for his solo at the prestigious Taoli Bei dance competition and had the opportunity to work with many choreographers, such as Shen Wei for the 2008 Summer Olympics. Following the completion of his degree, Liu Mo served as an instructor in the foundations of Classical Chinese dance at the Beijing Dance Academy until 2011. From 2012 to 2019, He danced with Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers in Philadelphia, PA. Liu Mo has choreographed commissioned works for Ballet 180, Hua Hua Zhang, Hua Xia, Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers and Verb Ballets. He currently lives in Cleveland with his wife and young son.
Libby Lubinger, Recreational Dance Director, Spanish Dance Artistic Director Emeritus
Libby has been part of Fairmount Center since its inception in 1971, sharing her passion and vision for the Spanish Dance program. In addition to Spanish Dance, she has studied Ballet, Modern, Jazz and Ethnic dance. She holds a BA in English from Brooklyn College in New York City.
Fredrick Moodie, Dance Faculty
When you ask about Kinderdance or Tap Dance at Fairmount, you’ll hear one name again and again: Mr. Moodie. Fredrick teaches tap, ballet and jazz. He has choreographed dance works at East Cleveland Theater, Karamu House, Theatre Ensemble, Cuyahoga Community College, Cleveland Coordinated Arts Program, and in numerous schools.
Ryan Rosinski, Dance Faculty
Ryan Rosinski is a professional dancer that you might have seen on “So You Think You Can Dance” or perhaps from his full dance segment/interview on the hit PBS show “Fashion Style Miami.” Ryan has been featured in numerous online commercials where his dance moves have helped promote energy drinks, clothing, and even LED shoes. His dance skills have been seen all around America from numerous tours and from his YouTube channel and persona: the “Silver Suit Dancer”, where he has more than 2,000,000 views. If you ever see Mr. Ryan in class or at the studio please be sure to say “Hiiii”; he will be the person with the biggest smile on his face and some crazy awesome dance moves!
Rebecca Sanders, Dance Faculty
Rebecca’s love of dancing runs in her family. The daughter of a dancer – and now a mom herself to one too – Rebecca has a BFA, Dance Performance, The Ohio State University. She is professionally trained in jazz, ballet, tap, modern and character. Rebecca also has 6 years of performing and teaching experience with Inlet Dance Theatre, a modern dance company.
Ben Shepard, Dance Faculty
Ben began his dancing career in Maryland where he trained with the Ballet Theater of Maryland as well as attended summer programs at The Washington School of Ballet, The Kirov Academy, and Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. Ben continued his training and education at Butler University where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Arts Administration and Dance. Ben has danced professionally with Verb Ballets since 2018.
Rachel Soucie, Dance Faculty
Rachel has studied dance with the Cleveland Ballet, Ohio Ballet, The Joffrey Ballet School, and The Ailey School, among many, many others! She has also had the opportunity to choregraph for many dance schools and performing arts venues- including productions at the Akron Civic Theatre, Cleveland Dance Project, and the Cleveland Cavaliers Dance Team (where she choreographed AND performed!). Rachel is joining Fairmount to teach ballet levels I-III for our Winter/Spring Session 2 of 2021.
Brittany Sterling, Dance & ArtsyoU Faculty
Brittany is a graduate of Baldwin Wallace University where she studied Communication Disorders and Dance. She currently teaches jazz and hip hop at Fairmount Center for the Arts, and also specializes in pre-k dance, creative movement, modern, adapted dance, yoga and conditioning for all ages!
By day, she services individuals on the autism spectrum at Therapy and Wellness Connection center as a Behavior Technician. Brittany has been working in the early intervention field for 7+ years and has been teaching dance for 3!
She enhances her dance education and training by taking technique classes regularly, studying at the graduate level, and performing. She is a member of MadJax Dance Company; a local modern and concert dance company. She has performed with the Cleveland Dance Project and Expedition Dance Company as well as in shows at the Cleveland Dance Fest, House of Blues: Raw Artists, Hard Rock Rocksino, Ingenuity Fest, and more.
Brittany is currently pursuing a master’s in Counseling and Human Development specializing in Dance/Movement Therapy. In 2017, she obtained her 200 hour Yoga Teacher Certification and enjoys practicing in her free time. With the right weather, you can catch her outside on a biking or hiking adventure. Otherwise, she’s indoors cooking, reading, or working on a DIY craft.
Gregory Berlin, Violin and Viola Faculty
Gregory’s passion for strings began at age seven when he started learning the Suzuki method, which creates a positive, interactive environment for students to learn and grow through music.
Gregory teaches violin and viola and has performed in several local ensembles, including the Columbus Symphony Orchestra. He also teaches at the Great Lakes School of Music and formerly instructed at Mercyhurst College’s Young Arts String Program in Erie, PA.\
A few weeks before former Cleveland Orchestra concertmaster Josef Gingold passed away, he praised Gregory’s skill in a violin master class. “He gave me a wink and said, ‘You did a good job today, young man,’” says Berlin. “I’ll always remember that.”
Liliana Garlisi, Piano Faculty
What does figure skating, painting, swimming, archery and unicycling have to do with Fairmount Piano Faculty? Liliana Garlisi enjoys all of these activities, plus playing and teaching piano! Liliana Garlisi graduated Summa Cum Laude from Florida Gulf Coast University with a Bachelor of Arts in Piano Performance. Previously, she graduated from the Cleveland Institute of Music’s Preparatory Department, where she studied piano, music theory, and chamber music and received the Outstanding Theory Award. A winner of many piano competitions, Liliana has performed as a piano concerto soloist with the Kent State University Orchestra, the Bluewater Chamber Orchestra, and the Lakeland Civic Orchestra. Liliana is also a harpist and was a member of the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra.
David Gorski, Guitar, Ukulele & Saxophone Faculty
Beloved music teacher at St. Anselm School, David shares his passion for music teaching guitar, ukulele and saxophone with the Fairmount community. David has a BS in Music Education from Malone University. When he’s not in our community teaching, you may find David hanging out in one of his favorite spots in Ohio – the corner of E. 9th and Carnegie.
Caitlin Luck, Voice Faculty
Caitlin Luck has been teaching voice lessons since 2016. She uses voice science and modern pedagogy as a basis for her lesson instruction. She specializes in classical music, but also enjoys singing and teaching in musical theater and other CCM styles.
Joseph Rangel, Guitar & Ukulele Faculty
Joseph has been playing guitar and was originally trained by his father, Rey, in classical guitar. He soon began to study pop and rock music, enjoying classic rock as well as other genres like Motown. In 2005, he began studying jazz. This love led him to Tri-C Metro studying jazz performance with a minor in piano. Joseph recently graduated from Cleveland State University and landed at Fairmount sharing his love for music. In addition to guitar, Joseph teaches ukulele and beginner piano students.
Harry Richardson, Piano Faculty
Mr. Richardson holds a BA in piano performance from the University of Akron. He has been working as a professional pianist for over 35 years, performing with symphony orchestras, national Broadway tours, and as an accompanist and music director for several schools and churches. He currently serves as accompanist for the North Royalton School District.
Ann Castellano, Piano Faculty
Ann Castellano has been faculty at the Cleveland Institute of Music for many years. She holds two music degrees, a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance and a Master of Music in Choral Conducting. Ann has worked as a church musician and music director at Saint Clare Parrish. She has extensive experience as a pianist, organist, vocalist, and choral conductor. Ann also taught piano at Ursuline College was appointed to the Diocesan Music Commission by Bishop Anthony Pilla.
Ryan Kearns, Violin Faculty
Violinist Ryan W. Kearns received his Master of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music, where he studied under Juliana Athayde, Concertmaster of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. Kearns also studied with Peter Otto, First Associate Concertmaster of the Cleveland Orchestra, during his undergraduate violin performance degree at Cleveland State University. In October 2020, Kearns served as Acting Concertmaster of the Mansfield Symphony Orchestra. Kearns is also a member of the Canton Symphony Orchestra and substitutes with the Akron Symphony and the Erie Philharmonic. During the summer of 2019, Kearns was invited to perform in the Blossom Festival Orchestra with Brian Wilson which featured the Pet Sounds album and other notable Beach Boys hits. As a member of the Eastman Philharmonia, he performed at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall in premieres with Renée Fleming. Kearns also served as a Rotating Concertmaster in the Eastman Conducting Orchestra, where he was selected as a Department Assistant. While studying in Cleveland, he appeared as a featured soloist with the Cleveland State Symphony Orchestra after receiving first prize in the Daniel Rains Annual Concerto Competition. Previously attended summer festivals include the Texas, Bowdoin International, National, and Eastern Music Festivals. Committed to community engagement, Kearns collaborates in his home state of Ohio as an instructor, clinician, and guest performer at Rainey Institute (Cleveland), Lake Erie College (Painesville), the Cleveland Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Suburban Symphony Orchestra. Kearns received the highly selective Arts Leadership Certificate, an Institute for Music Leadership program that provides mentorship and resources for musicians interested in entrepreneurship, arts advocacy, and audience engagement.
Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, Kearns founded Glissando
Strings (www.glissandostrings.com) which provides high – quality live music performances at
weddings and special events. In addition, Kearns is an advocate for the composers and musicians affected by the World Wars, promoting and performing the solo and chamber music works of Bacewicz, Ullmann, and Weinberg.
Joan Bendix, Music Director of the Youth Theatre Program & Theatre Faculty
Joan studied piano and voice at the Cleveland Institute of Music. Joan has served as music director and performed on the keyboard/piano for musical productions in schools and theaters, including the Cleveland Playhouse, Cleveland Public Theater, Chagrin Valley Little Theater, Mercury Theatre Company, Walsh Jesuit High School, and University School. She is currently Music Director at First United Church of Christ in Eastlake.
Joan loves teaching children and helping them find that spark of passion for music. She believes in guiding students to find their own voice and the confidence to participate in the community of theater and musical production.
Merlynne Hancock, Choreography Director of Youth Theatre Program & Theatre Faculty
Merlynne Hancock joined the Fairmount faculty in 1989 as a choreographer for the Youth Theatre and has taught a variety of children’s classes and camps, including Movin’ Together and Kreative Kids. For 35 years, Merlynne has choreographed productions at area schools, from elementary to college level. She started dancing at age 6, and studied under Bea Fried, Noreen Londregan, and Ernst Hillenbran. She graduated from Heidelberg College with a degree in Communication and Theatre Arts and French, with an acting/directing emphasis.
Patti Susman, Director of the Youth Theatre Program & Theatre Faculty
Patti is an honors graduate of Cleveland State University. She has a degree Dramatic Arts. She has been with the Fairmount since 1982, where she has directed over 80 productions. She has also taught dance, art and gymnastics. Patti was the first Youth Theatre Director at the Solon for the Arts and was also an Assistant Director and instructor for the Heights Youth Theatre.
Patti trained as a dancer with Dave and Shirley Morganstern. She was a member of the Morgan Dancers. She and her sisters performed throughout the Cleveland area. She began her acting career at the old Musicarnival Theatre, located in Warrensville Hts. Ohio. At age 13, she was selected as one of the youngest apprentices in the theatre’s history. She spent 3 summers working, in various capacities, on Broadway touring company productions, concerts and children’s theatre performances. It was at Musicarnival that Patti was given the opportunity to teach and direct theatre classes to younger students and that is when she decided that arts education was her passion, and she has pursued that passion ever since.
Claudia Taller, Writing Faculty
Claudia Taller is a Cleveland-area writer who has written for many local and national publications over the last 25 years and has authored four books. In 2008, she launched Igniting Possibilities, a conduit for helping people realize their creative potential through writing, art, meditation, and yoga. She’s been leading workshops and retreats for over 20 years, many of them at Lakeside, Ohio’s Chautauqua on Lake Erie.
Claudia brings her spirit to Fairmount Center for the Arts to foster people’s voices. Many people would love to write, but don’t know how to get started, and once they trust the process of putting words on paper and find their “voice”, inspiration takes over and there’s no stopping them! One-on-one sessions will begin with Claudia listening to the student’s ideas and responding with projects that make sense for where the person’s at in the creative process. Each session will begin with homework completed since the last meeting. The writing can take any form, and the lessons may involve listening to and reading great poets, essayists, and novelists to learn to read like a writer!
Angela Gartner, Writing Faculty
Angela Gartner, whose poetry has appeared in “Cabinet of Heed” and Literary Cleveland (online 2020 Writing Prompt). She is also a regular at poetry open mics. Her non-fiction stories, essays and columns have appeared in several magazines; weekly and daily newspapers in Ohio as well as the Chicago Tribune. She is a graduate student at Kent State University in Ohio and the president of the Society of Professional Journalists — Cleveland Pro Chapter.
Sandi Fink, Visual Arts Faculty
Having homeschooled her five children, Sandi is a lifelong learner. Along the way of teaching her children, Sandi picked up mad skills in cooking, baking, the art of Zentangle, calligraphy, graphic design and even ballroom dancing. Though she’s enjoyed a variety of jobs along the way – from preschool teacher to working as an administrator with the city of Wickliffe – she found that working with non-profit arts organizations were a great way to utilize a variety of her skills and passions.
Brigitte Fiorille, Director of Visual Arts & Visual Arts Faculty
Brigitte loved teaching her four sons (now awesome adults) about her love of the arts. Growing from those arts lessons, Brigitte was inspired to pursue a degree in Art Education (Kent State University). Brigitte has grown with Fairmount, as an instructor and administrator and wears many hats each day to support the mission of Fairmount. When she’s not in the ceramics studio creating awesome art, you’ll find her with the admin team making the arts happen at Fairmount and in the community. When she’s not at Fairmount, you’ll find Brigitte playing with her granddaughter, making the world a more beautiful place with her green thumb, or cooking for her awesome family.
Kathy Oravecz, Visual Arts Faculty
Kathy Sabbath Oravecz is a graduate of Ursuline College with a Bachelor of Arts in Graphic design/Art education, and a Master of Education in Reading from John Carroll University. The National Endowment of the Humanities awarded her two fellowships from Rutgers and Syracuse Universities. Ms. Oravecz is also the recipient of the American Watercolor Society Teacher Scholarship. She is a signature artist with the Ohio Watercolor Society, the Hawaii Watercolor Society and the Pennsylvania Watercolor Society, and Whiskey Painters of America. The Holden Arboretum selected her for Teacher in Residence. She taught art for thirty years with the Madison Local Schools, and also was an instructor at Lake Erie College and John Carroll University. She is the author/illustrator for a children’s picture book entitled “The Frog and the Footbridge”. Her watercolors are in collections across the USA and in the Netherlands.
Tara Seibel, Visual Arts Faculty
Tara’s best known for her collaboration with the late Harvey Pekar of American Splendor comics. She worked at American Greetings and spearheaded Tara Seibel Art Gallery in Cleveland. Her editorial cartoons and graphic stories have been published in The Graphic Canons Volumes 2 & 3, Graphic Canon of Children’s Literature, Comics Comics, Mineshaft, Jewish Review of Books, New York Times, LA Times, Cleveland Scene, Austin Chronicle, Chicago Newcity, US Catholic, Heeb, Hippy Comix, and USA Today’s Pop Candy. She teaches at Fairmount Center for the Arts and lives with her husband, Aaron, her three children, and her dog and cat in Pepper Pike, Ohio.
For more on Tara, check out taraseibel.blogspot.com
John Troxell, ArtsyoU Visual Arts Faculty
Professional Artist John Troxell was born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1960, and attended Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio and The Gage Academy of Art in Seattle, Washington. He also attended and graduated from the Marine Military Academy in Harlingen, Texas.
John’s paintings and murals are prominently displayed in many public collections in Ohio such as The Cleveland Clinic, Dollar Bank, Parker Hannifin Corporation, Metro General Hospital, Akron General Hospital, Thompson Hine, LLP. also in San Francisco, California and Missoula, Montana. His works have been shown in solo and group exhibitions in Ohio, Michigan, New York and Washington.
He received the Hudson Valley Art Association Award from the Pastel Society Of America, the William Grauer Award in Studio Art from Case Western Reserve University and Best of Show at the Fairmount Center for the Arts in 2007 and 2019. He is a member of the Cleveland Art Association, Murray Hill Life Drawing Group and The Pretentious Cleveland Portrait Artists.
John lives in Mentor, Ohio and teaches adults and teens drawing, painting, pastel or mural painting.
Mandy Peltier, ArtsyoU & Visual Arts Faculty
Mandy is an artist and instructor who predominantly works in the fine art medium of colored pencil, and her award winning drawings are known for appearing realistic in nature. Mandy’s artwork has been displayed in several gallery and museum exhibitions, in private collections, and her artwork and tutorials have also been published in various books and magazines. Mandy has achieved her signature status through American Women Artists and her CPX signature status through the Colored Pencil Society of America (CPSA). She has taught various classes and workshops around the United States, and she currently serves as the Membership Director for CPSA. Her desire is to portray her subjects in such a way that they cause the viewer to pause, reflect, and see the beauty in what is too often taken for granted or never noticed, and she hopes her love and excitement for colored pencil is contagious to everyone she talks to!
Anne Stottler, Visual Arts Faculty
Anne Marsh Stottler graduated from Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio with a degree in Art Education. Anne lived in Maine for 20 years where she taught art in grades K-12, adult aer education, was a floral designer, and owned her own business, silk screening quilt patterns on t-shirts and totes. She has been sewing since she was eight years old. Once she started quilting she couldn’t stop and has been incorporating her
love of gardening into her quilts ever since. Just as in nature’s textures and colors, her quilts honor the patterns and textures of the fabric keeping the designs simple to highlight the true beauty of the material. She loves teaching sewing and continuing the time honored traditions of our ancestors. “Wow ! Look what I made!” is music to her ears!
Mary Lyons, Visual Arts Faculty
Mary Lyons loves taking long walks, a camera or sketchbook in hand, searching for a picture that begs to be captured. The key to bringing a subject to life in a still image is contrast: light and shadow, structure and chaos, ordinary and unusual. The passion for capturing life in this way has catalyzed Mary’s lifelong study of fine arts, and molded her style of realism in nature and in portraiture. She believes that the stories written in the lines of a face tell of truths that few words can express. From watercolor to charcoal, pen and ink to photography, the medium used sets the emotional tone of the piece. It is not the emotion itself that drives Mary’s work, but the desire to kindle within the viewer a corresponding impulse to create something beautiful. As a teacher, it is Mary’s goal to equip her students with the skills to express this beauty through their art.
Cathy Kasdan, Visual Arts Faculty
Cathy Kasdan is an Ohio native who has a background in art education and has taught art at all levels in public schools in Northeast Ohio and at international schools in South Korea. She holds her Masters Degree in Textiles from Kent State University and enjoys working in weaving, knitting, crochet, sewing, and using non- traditional materials. She has been a part of the Haute Trash group exhibiting her “trashion fashion” in multiple fiber related magazines as well as on the fashion show catwalk. Cathy also enjoys working with creative painting techniques and in guiding students to explore new ways to use paint and color for their creations,
leading students in a way that they can express themselves as individuals along with learning about techniques and materials in art making along the way.
Jamie Davis, Arts Experience & Operations Manager
With a love of visual arts, Jamie explored many mediums and then found her true passion playing in mud: Creating her own independent studies in ceramics and Raku in college, she fell in love with clay. After receiving an undergraduate degree in Art Education, Jamie boarded the train called life. She married, had two beautiful energetic girls, and started a new path.
Jamie’s days filled with arts and crafts, flash cards, preschool library times, farm park adventures and even time watching Sesame Street. During this at home-time with her girls, she collected a few little ones along the way as she opened up and shared her home for other kids needing childcare in her community.
In between organizing her activities at home, fueled by self-sustainability and a desire to feed her family healthy food, the Davis family adopted a mother chicken with her seven baby chicks. Eight chickens very quickly turned into ninety-eight (give or take a few), three ducks, a couple of turkeys, two resident cats and their home became “Mother Hen Farm.”
After the girls went to school full time it was time for another journey. Jamie found Fairmount Center for the Arts, where she can be immersed in the arts community and education while growing and supporting a local non-profit organization. When not at Fairmount Jamie can be found managing their small farm, running her girls to a 4-H meeting, sports practice, music lessons or even taking a class or two at Fairmount.
Dale Olson, Visual Arts Faculty
Dale has been involved with art ever since he took painting lessons as a child at the Cleveland Museum of art. He attended Ashland University and received a BFA degree in ceramics and a degree to teach art education K-12. After 4 years of teaching, he switched to computers and eventually continued his family’s business in the construction field. He began concentrating his spare time into watercolors because they were easy to transport, fast to complete and he enjoyed the challenge they presented. Dale has been teaching watercolors for about 10 years at Kenston Community Education and had a very successful following. He is also versatile with many other mediums including oil and acrylic paints, all types of pencils, charcoals and pen and ink. He also enjoys plein air painting and his work has been accepted in many art shows in the surrounding area.
Barbara Martin, Visual Arts Faculty
After a fifteen-year stint as a graphic designer in both New York City and Dayton, Ohio, I changed careers and became a teacher. I used my design background in the classroom, both as an intervention specialist and while teaching art. After a long and successful career, I retired and moved to Northeast Ohio. I now work full-time in my studio in a variety of media, from conceptual collage and assemblage to realistic scratchboard “portraits” of birds and other animals.
I received a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in painting, a Master’s Degree (MEd) in education, as well as National Board Certification in art K – 8. I am a member of the Ohio Collage Society and the International Society of Scratchboard Artists. My artwork has been exhibited in many galleries in the Cleveland and Dayton areas.
Darlene Kelbach, Yoga
Darlene completed her yoga teacher training through Namaste Yoga in 2007 and began teaching shortly there-after. Darlene seeks to blend yoga with her passion for plant-based nutrition and healthy eating and share that with her students. With her dedicated focus, she feels she is now “living her yoga” which in turn, she hopes to inspire others to “Live Their Yoga” so they also can be the creative expression of their own passions and inner truth and live inspired, joyful lives each day!