Visual Arts, Mosaics
Vicki Murphy is a mosaic artist who works primarily in Ohio and New Orleans. She has trained extensively with master mosaic artist Laurel True of True Mosaics Studio for many years focusing on studio work and professional development in large scale public art. She worked with True on multiple projects in New Orleans including the Global Mosaic Project and Universal Garden’s Lotus Fantasy Bench, the Green Project, and the Edible Schoolyard murals. Vicki’s combined years as artist, educator and licensed social worker give her a unique perspective regarding the healing power of art and the beauty of creative expression.…
Eric Paton (MM) is a world percussionist fascinated by the intersection of movement and music. He accompanied Afro Caribbean dance classes for ten years, including technique and Dunham techniques classes with April Berry Burkey. He founded the Hiuchi Taiko Ethnic Percussion Ensemble featuring the music of Cuba, Haiti, Brazil and Japan, the KataBomba Drummers, co-directed Sambateria (a community samba percussion ensemble), and directs Yumbambé Salsa Jazz.
He specializes in percussion from the African Diaspora and Japan and is dedicated to providing interactive learning experiences for all learners and educators.
Paton has performed with national and international artists including Aretha Franklin, Tito Puente Jr., Sir Roland Hannah, Bobby Shew-Salsa Caliente, Earl Klugh, Milano La Scala (Italian National Opera), Eitetsu Hayashi, and Burnadette Peters.…
Kimberly Payne is a teaching artist, administrator, instructor, and choreographer. Kimberly has degrees and certifications from the Scandinavian Institute for Physical Culture in Denmark, the American College of Sports Medicine, Malone University, and the University of Akron (Jerry Burr, Inna Strabova, Lana Carroll, Kay Davis, Tom Smith, Alexander Vedmedev, Andrew Carroll, Heinz Poll, Anne Green Gilbert, Bella Lewitzky, and Donald McCardle). Her collaborative experiences are with Kent State University; Ballet Magnificat! in Jackson, Mississippi; and Jacob’s Pillow in Massachusetts, (Merce Cunningham, Meredeth Monk, Craig Patterson, Patricia Lent, Susanna Chaffey, Jennifer Way, Milton Myers, Dianne McIntyre).…
Music, Guitar, Piano, & Music Theory
Michelle is a guitar, piano, theory, and ensemble instructor with over 15 years of teaching experience. She has a bachelor’s degree in music performance with classical guitar and a focus on music business from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell. In the early years of her career, Michelle taught under the guidance of Andy Rega at Music Academy of Chelmsford in Massachusetts. She is a 2017 transplant to Richland County from Knoxville, TN where she had been teaching at Knoxville Academy of Music (KAM) starting in 2007. During her time at KAM, she developed an infant and toddler music program of her own, taught all ages of students in a variety of instruments and music styles, and directed an advanced youth classical guitar performance group called Knoxville Youth Guitar Ensemble.…
Visual Arts, Printmaking
Klaire Smith was born in the hills of Southern Ohio and raised in Portsmouth, Ohio; the region has always been a point of inspiration for her. Receiving an art scholarship to attend the University of Rio Grande, Klaire graduated with honors in 2016 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. While in college she took a special interest in supplemental education methods and collaboration. Klaire was certified as a Professional Printer at the Tamarind Institute in Albuquerque, New Mexico where she studied lithography and was trained professionally as a collaborator. Personally Klaire’s work touches on regionalism, Appalachia, and the drug epidemic that so many of us are experiencing within our communities.…
Matt and Nicolette Swift
Nicolette Swift is the founder and owner of Nicolettecinemagraphics. Her roles include general business operations, production management, cinematography, color grading, editing, and much more. Her background includes a Bachelor of Arts in both Film Studies and Art History from the Ohio State University and a Masters in Library and Information Science with a focus in digital collections preservation and access from Kent State University. Since 2003, Nicolette has been providing an array of media production services to businesses, non-profits, and residents of the Central Ohio area. Nicolette is a well round digital and analog media specialist handling film photography, digital photography, videography, web and media installation and consultation, as well as producing her own projects which have shown at festivals and competitions across the US and abroad.…
Creative Writing & Documentary Photography
Fariha Tayyab is a multidisciplinary artist hailing from Houston. As a writer and photographer, she often identifies as a storyteller who uses her creative writing and documentary photography to create and share narratives with others.
After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Creative Writing, Fariha pursued a teaching license and has been practicing both her art and teaching for more than a decade. She has worked with elementary and high school students of all backgrounds in three states and three countries. In her early teaching years, she set up an E.S.L.…
In Harmony Therapeutic Services
Music & Music Therapy
In Harmony Therapeutic Services harnesses the power of music as a vehicle for children and adolescents to process information and emotions, express themselves, learn, create, and heal. As an organization, they believe in teaching through a therapeutic lens and use musical interventions and experiences linked to Ohio Content Standards to address academic and social-emotional goals. Their services are provided by highly qualified, board-certified music therapists, and their programs are developed so that children and adolescents are able to achieve individualized goals and live in harmony with themselves and the world around them.…
Described as singing with an engaging, robust tone (clevelandclassical.com), Ms. Troyer is a versatile soprano, at home on the opera stage as well as concert and recital stage. Last year she was the soprano soloist in the world premeire of The Emergent Universe by Sam Guarnaccia with the Cleveland Chamber Choir and she sang the role of The Foreign Woman in The Consul with Nightingale Opera Theatre. Recent engagements include the role of Beth in Mark Adamo’s Little Women with Nightingale Opera Theatre, Fanny in Rossini’s La Cambiale Matrimonio with the Kent/Blossom Music Festival, the soprano solo in the Brahms Requiem with both the Summit Choral Society and the Kent State Chorus and Orchestra, and in Vivaldi’s Gloria with Akron Baroque and Singer’s Companye.…
Visual Arts, Comics & Graphic Novels
Carol Tyler is an influential pioneer of American Comics, known for her beautifully written and drawn by hand autobiographical stories.
Carol was born and raised in Chicago, received her Masters from Syracuse in 1983. After some years in NYC, she moved to San Francisco and began getting her comics published in R. Crumb’s Weirdo. In 1988, Tyler received the Dori Seda Memorial Award for Best New Female Cartoonist.
Tyler has many books.There’s the graphic masterpiece “Soldier’s Heart: The Campaign to Understand my WWII Veteran Father, A Daughter’s Memoir” (2015) which began as the “You’ll Never Know” trilogy.…
Hans Utter is multi-instrumentalist, ethnomusicologist, and dedicated educator. Since 1993, he has studied sitar and tabla with India’s top musicians, including Ustad Shujaat Khan. He holds a diploma in sitar from the Benares Hindu University, and a M.A. and Ph.D. in ethnomusicology from The Ohio State University. In his music, he aims to communicate the depth and beauty of North Indian music through the sitar and to illuminate the varied world of Indian art, culture, and history.
In addition to the sitar, his research as an ethnomusicologist has led him into music of the Middle East and Central Asia.…
Singing, Songwriting, & Multi-Instrumentalist
A singer, a songwriter and a “musical explorer,” Hal Walker has been actively working as a teaching artist in Ohio since 1996. Voted Cleveland’s “Best Musician” by readers of the Scene Magazine for two years in a row, Hal is one of Ohio’s musical treasures. He has the unique ability to engage, fascinate, and connect with audiences of all ages. With a soaring baritone voice, he sings soul-searching songs that celebrate community, diversity, and the creative process. He composes and improvises on the piano, guitar, voice, harmonica, jaw harp, and a few instruments that you’ve probably never seen before.…