Culture Builds Community

2019 Season Artists

Julia Bullard

Julia Bullard teaches viola, string pedagogy, and string methods and techniques at the University of Northern Iowa. Dr. Bullard is also the Associate Director for Graduate Studies in the School of music. She is an active solo, chamber and orchestral performer both in the US and abroad. Recent solo engagements include performances in Russia, Central and South America, France, New York and Iowa. Dr. Bullard has served on the board of the Iowa Viola Society and as President of the Iowa String Teachers’ Association. In 2011, she was named the Iowa String Teachers Association Studio Teacher of the Year.

Hunter Capoccioni
double bass

Hunter Capoccioni is the founder and Artistic Director of the Cedar Valley Chamber Music Festival. He currently lives in Houston, Texas and works at the Shepherd School of Music as the Chamber Music Coordinator. As a double bassist performs regularly with the Houston Grand Opera and Houston Ballet, Musiqua Houston, the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra, and Aperio. He served as Associate Principal Double Bassist of Norrlands Opera Orchestra of Sweden (2003-2005) and the Principal Double Bassist of the Norwegian Opera Company (2006). From 2007 - 2014 Dr. Capoccioni served as  Instructor of Double Bass at the University of Northern Iowa. 

Michelle Cheramy

Michelle Cheramy is an artist recognized for the beauty of her sound, the fluidity of her playing and her interpretive skills in a wide range of repertoire. A compelling exponent of music from the eighteenth to the twenty-first centuries, Michelle has appeared in venues throughout the Maritimes, Ontario, Alberta and BC as well as in Texas, Georgia, Virginia, West Virginia and at conventions of the National Flute Association in San Diego, Pittsburgh, New York, Charlotte (NC) and Las Vegas. Recent appearances include the Cedar Valley Chamber Music Festival (Iowa), the Tuckamore Festival (NL) and the New Brunswick Summer Music Festival (Fredericton). 

Nathan Cook

Nathan Cook has been praised for his “authoritative yet relaxed” playing, his “sweet and pliant” sound, and “the combination of vigor and beauty” in his interpretation (Houston Chronicle). He performs regularly with The Exorior Duo (, and he was the cellist for and the Artistic Director of the Hot Earth Ensemble, which from 2008-2015. Cook’s solo, concerto, and chamber performances have been heard regionally and nationally in Canada on CBC Radio, and regionally in the United States on NPR stations in Buffalo, New York; Houston, Texas; and across Iowa. Cook has served as the principal cellist of the Houston Chamber Orchestra and of the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra, and he has become a regular fixture as well at the annual Cedar Valley Chamber Music Festival (CVCMF) in the Waterloo/Cedar Falls region in Iowa.

Philip Borter

Philip Lawrence Borter is quickly becoming recognized as one of the most diverse stringed instrumentalist of his generation. Being equally comfortable in traditional as well as non-traditional performance styles, Dr. Borter has prided himself in exploring and sharing an incredibly varied repertory. He formed Duo-B, a violin and cello ensemble, with his wife, Hirono Sugimoto Borter. Together they have dedicated themselves to promoting the wealth of repertory for the genre and are busy expanding the medium through multiple unique collaborations.  ​Dr. Borter currently serves as Assistant Professor of Music (cello) at Luther College, where he  maintains a private cello studio, tours with the Luther Piano Quartet, and serves as clinician for middle, high school and collegiate level music students.

Hirono Borter

Hirono Borter is a Japanese violinist, composer, and arranger based in the US.  Alongside her husband, Philip Borter, she formed Duo-B, an ensemble dedicated to works for violin and cello.  As an ensemble they remain dedicated to expanding the duo repertory and, in addition to performing rarely heard classical masterpieces, Hirono frequently composes and arranges music from a variety of eras: from Baroque music to folk and popular tunes.  Recent performance projects include the release of an album of her arrangements of tangos by Astor Piazzolla, concert tours in Italy, Japan, the Midwest, and the Southeastern United States.




Carol Hester

Carol Hester is Professor of Flute at Luther College where she teaches applied flute and flute methods. Principal flutist of the La Crosse Symphony Orchestra in La Crosse, Wisconsin, Hester is a member of the Luther College faculty wind ensemble, the Talus Trio, and has also performed with the Oneota Winds, the Trio/Quartet Inégal, and the Northeast Iowa Chamber Winds. Hester is a licensed Andover Educator (2016) and as such is trained to teach the What Every Musician Needs to Know About the Body course. Her ongoing interest in the physiological and neurophysiological basis of music pedagogy is reflected in her approach to teaching and performing. She is also author of the textbook, "Teaching the Flute—a Method of Instruction."

Mia Hagarty

A native of Cedar Falls, Iowa, and a graduate of the University of Northern Iowa, Mia Hagarty is a very active freelance performer and teacher in the Corpus Christi, Texas area. She is a core member of the Corpus Christi Symphony Orchestra and enjoys playing on occasion with the Victoria Symphony Orchestra, the Kingsville Symphony Orchestra, the Corpus Christi Ballet Orchestra, and the Sparkling City Opera. She has been a member of the South Texas Chamber Players for several years, a group that specializes in works by Latin American composers. She also plays with the Islander String Quartet and the Del Mar Faculty Trio. She has been a featured artist and teacher at the Coastal Bend String Camp for several years. She maintains a full violin and viola private studio and is an adjunct instructor of violin and viola at Del Mar College.

Scott Hagarty

Dr. Scott Hagarty was recently hired as Assistant Professor of Trumpet at Tennessee Tech University. He was previously the Associate Professor of Trumpet at Del Mar College in Corpus Christi, Texas. Dr. Hagarty is a versatile musician with experience performing in classical, jazz, new music and early music styles. He is currently principal trumpet of the Bryan Symphony Orchestra and a member of the Brass Arts Quintet, both in residence at TTU. He was previously a member of the Corpus Christi, Victoria and Waterloo-Cedar Falls Symphony Orchestras and has performed with the Victoria Bach Festival Orchestra, Orchestra Iowa and the Rochester Symphony (MN) among others across the United States. As a chamber musician he was a member of the Corpus Christi Brass Quintet, Aurora Brass Quintet and the Del Mar College Faculty Brass Trio. He has performed as a soloist and chamber musician at several national and international music conferences including at the Texas Music Educators Association Convention, Texas Jazz Festival, Big 12 Trombone Conference and at the International Trumpet Guild Conference. 

Hannah Holman

Hannah Holman, cellist, joined the New York City Ballet Orchestra at the beginning of the 2012-2013 season. Her career has encompassed orchestral and chamber music, solo performances, and teaching.  In addition to her work with the New York City Ballet Orchestra, Ms. Holman is the principal cellist of the Quad City Symphony, a position she has held since 2008. An active chamber musician, Ms Holman helped found Trio 826, with her dear friends Susanna Klein, violin, and Julia Bullard, viola. She was a founding member of the Beaumont Piano Trio, which performed around the United States and England, and was also a founding member of Quadrivinium, a music ensemble in residence at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. From 2002-2011, she was a member of the Maia Quartet, the University of Iowa's quartet in residence.

Hannah Howland

A Cedar Falls native, Hannah began studying violin at the UNI Suzuki School when she was five years old. She had the opportunity to study with a number of incredible teachers as she grew up, including Lisa Guttenburg, Therese Fetter, Dr. Julia Bullard, and Frederick Halgedahl. She went to the University of Minnesota to study with Mark Bjork, where she received her Bachelor’s deree in violin performance, and then decided to return to UNI to study under Dr. Ross Winter and pursue a Master’s degree in violin performance, which she completed in 2017. She is currently teaching at the UNI Suzuki School, where she was a student for so many years.  She also works for the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Symphony as the music librarian, preparing the music for the musicians for each concert set. In addition, Hannah plays and performs as much as she can with ensembles and orchestras throughout eastern Iowa.

Tara Lynn Ramsey

Tara Lynn Ramsey enjoys a varied career as a chamber musician, new music interpreter, orchestral musician, and teacher. She performs as violinist and violist of Chicago’s “superb contemporary-music collective" (The New York Times) Ensemble Dal Niente. She is a member of the Miami-based New World Symphony and was co-concertmaster for two seasons of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago. Recently, she was part of a collaboration between the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association and members of Purpose Over Pain, a Chicago-based group of mothers who have lost children to gun violence. Over a period of months, the group wrote songs in memory of those lost and performed them around the city at peace rallies and community concerts. 

Phillip Roberts

Philip Roberts has won numerous awards including the Royal Bank-Debut Atlantic Award for Musical Excellence and the International Gold Medal at the Llangollen International Musical Eistenfodd in Wales, and has been recorded regularly by CBC. Other solo performances include Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 with the Banff Centre String Orchestra, individual concerts across Canada and in the U.S. and Europe, performances with the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra, and several concert tours across Eastern Canada. In addition to his teaching at MUN's School of Music, Roberts has a private studio of advanced piano students and adjudicates in music festivals across the province.  He is also an active accompanist in the community, his collaborative work including private studios, schools and professional soloists.

Jeanne Yu

Jeannie Yu was awarded first prize in the Frinna Awerbuch Piano Competition, the Flint Symphony International Concerto Competition, the Portland Symphony International Concerto Competition, and the Kingsville Piano Competition. As a soloist and collaborative artist she performed on chamber music series including the Northwestern University Winter Chamber Music Series, the Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival, Chamber Music North, Three Bridges Chamber Music Festival, Frankly Music Series, Chamber Music Milwaukee, Midsummers Music Festival, and the Rembrandt Chamber Players Series. Dr. Yu performed and taught masterclasses at the Alfred University Summer Chamber Music Institute, the Ohio Wesleyan Summer Chamber Music Festival, the Milwaukee Chamber Music Festival, and the Troy Youth Chamber Music Institute. She is the pianist in the Florestan Duo that recorded the Beethoven’s complete works for cello and piano.