Rebecca Dunne studied horn performance at Northwestern University under Gail Williams and Dale Clevenger. She was awarded a Fulbright grant in Germany, where she pursued her studies at Folkwang Hochshule fuer Musik in Essen with Frank Lloyd. In the following years, she played second horn with Stadttheater Giessen and performed horn and Wagner tube in the Oper Bonn production of Wagner's Ring cycle. Rebecca currently performs with Fairbanks Symphony Orchestra and Opera Fairbanks.
Nathan Arnold is a guitarist who has performed in a wide variety of styles and venues. From popular styles to classical and jazz, he has been an active participant in making and teaching music where he lives.
Mr. Arnold joined the UAF Summer Music Academy Faculty in 2014. His teaching duties include guitar master classes, guitar lessons, guitar ensemble and ukulele. His early studies in music where at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, before transferring to the University of Idaho to study classical guitar at the Lionel Hampton School of Music. He has performed numerous solo works for guitar as well as guitar ensemble and has performed in many popular styles with modern groups. An advocate of new music and guitar education, he is passionate about the development of guitar programs in schools.
For the past three years Mr. Arnold has taught general music at North Pole Elementary. In addition to current trends in music education, his classes offer students the opportunity to study the guitar and ukulele. His guitar students have performed with Orff Ensembles as well as Orchestras. He also maintains an active private studio of guitar students in the Fairbanks area, instructing a wide variety of students and styles.
Avalon Lee, born and raised in Fairbanks began studying the double bass as an elementary student with teacher, Sheryl Fry. She continued her studies with Bob Olson, Vince Cee, and Paul Sharpe. In addition to four years of Solo Ensemble Avalon was the Gold Medalist for three of her four years at Alaska All State Orchestra, attended All-Northwest, and National High School Honors Orchestra. She was fortunate to be able to perform and travel with the Fairbanks Symphony and the Arctic Chamber Orchestra throughout her high school years.
Avalon was a finalist in the Concerto Competition at the Strings International Music Festival where she performed at Kimmel Hall in Philadelphia. She twice attended the Eastern Music Festival where she was Principal Bass, studying under Meredith Johnson. Avalon graduated from the Peabody Conservatory of Music at Johns Hopkins University in 2013, with a Bachelors of Music in Double Bass Performance. She was Principal Bass of Peabody Concert Orchestra and Peabody Symphony Orchestra three of her four years. While there, she studied with Paul Johnson and attended/performed in master classes with Hal Robinson, Eugene Levinson, Paul Ellison, Jeffrey Weisner, Ranaan Meyer, Ira Gold, Alex Hanna and many others.
Avalon was invited to the University of Manitoba in Canada on a full scholarship where she earned her Masters of Music in double bass performance in 2015. She is currently the Principal Bass of the University of Manitoba Symphony Orchestra. Avalon has been a substitute bassist for the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra and is a frequent guest artist at various Manitoba events. She teaches double bass and volunteers in the community.
Avalon has performed with ensembles in Germany, Greece, Canada, and South Korea as well as many states in the U.S.
Dr. Daniel Strawser is an active cellist throughout the United States who has taught at all levels of music education. Originally from Columbus, Ohio, Dr. Strawser studied music education at Denison University and holds masters and doctoral degrees in cello performance from the University of Memphis, where he studied with Brazilian cellist Leo Altino.
Active in symphonic, chamber, and solo performance, Dr. Strawser has performed throughout the Mid-South region and beyond. The incoming principal cellist of the Fairbanks Symphony Orchestra, he previously served as principle cellist of the Delta Symphony Orchestra while also performing with the Starkville Symphony, The Jackson Symphony Orchestra, and the Memphis-based Eroica Ensemble. Additionally, he has performed with orchestras in Ohio, Arizona, Indiana, Michigan, Washington, and Italy. Dr. Strawser has also been active in regional chamber music, performing with the Arkansas State Piano Quartet and pursuing duet performances with colleagues. Dr. Strawser has performed solo recitals on a variety of repertory in Tennessee, Arkansas, and Ohio. The little-known Austrian composer Hans Gál is a particular favorite of his, and Gál's cello music was the subject of Dr. Strawser's doctoral dissertation.
Working in disadvantaged urban schools, Dr. Strawser taught in the public school system in Memphis, Tennessee for nine years. Dr. Strawser organized and maintained active orchestra programs throughout the city of Memphis in some of the most impoverished and crime-ridden neighborhoods in the United States. This time in public education gave Dr. Strawser a great passion for helping the disadvantaged have access to the classical music experience and access to excellent training in the field.
Dr. Strawser has served on the faculties of Arkansas State University and Union University as an instructor of cello, where he helped to develop each school's respective cello program by teaching their very first performance majors on the instrument.
As the incoming instructor of cello and music education at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Dr. Strawser is looking forward to bringing enthusiasm and rigor to his students as he explores new horizons in music and mentorship.