Executive Director & Symphonic Band: Sholeen Wuest
Like so many of our music students, Sholeen Wuest grew up in a musical family and joined every band, orchestra, ensemble, and choir she could. She studied at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio majoring in music education and focusing on personal ambitions. It was about that time that Jesus Christ became her personal Lord and Savior and her focus shifted from serving herself to serving Him. And so, instead of playing in the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra and directing children in a public school band, she became the music director of a church where she led the congregation in praise and worship and directed a variety of musical groups. A few years after Sholeen and her husband, Mike, moved to Tennessee, she found herself once again leading praise and worship for a church in Franklin and working on music programs with the children. Her oldest daughter, Hannah, joined Nashville Notes in 2000 and Sholeen became a section leader 2 years later. As her other 3 children joined the band, she continued serving as Beginner Band director for 3 years before becoming director of Nashville Notes in 2008. She currently enjoys directing the Symphonic Band and serving the Nashville Notes staff and families. Contact: email@example.com
Administrative Assistant: Jodie Parker
Jodie Parker is a native Tennessean who grew up in Thompson’s Station. She spent many of her high school and college years performing administrative duties at various businesses. Once her oldest was born, she left her position as an Administrative Assistant with Williamson County School System to become a full time mom. She is now a homeschooling mom to two boys who eat, sleep and breathe music. Although, she isn’t a musician herself, she grew up in a home in which music played a huge part of her life. With her father being a bass guitarist and playing music with many bands over the years, she saw firsthand how important music was to him and to those who have such a passion. Because Jodie recognized that same passion in her boys, she sought after somewhere for her boys to learn and grow as musicians. In 2008, she found Nashville Notes. Jodie took on the role of Administrative Assistant at Nashville Notes in January of 2016. She is very thankful for the opportunity to work with the very ones who have taught, challenged and encouraged her boys. When she’s not juggling life as a mom, wife, and teacher, she loves to spend time skating, reading, painting, and taking on home improvement projects.
Intermediate Band: Anne Liddle
Anne Liddle graduated from the University of Arkansas with a B.S. degree in Music Education. After college, she began her career teaching K-8 vocal and instrumental music in a general music position at an elementary school in Kansas. Most recently, she was the 5th – 12th grade Band Director at a private school in Nashville. Mrs. Liddle and her three children have been associated with Nashville Notes (in between travels with her husband) since 2005. Her past duties with Nashville Notes have included sectional leader, private teacher, and director of Intermediate Band.
Beginner Band, Glory Choir, & Mallets: Olivia Wuest
Olivia has had extensive music training from a very early age and has directed Beginner Band since 2013. She has a passion for children, music, and teaching which is clearly and undeniably evident as she directs with amazing energy, grace, and enthusiasm! She has served as section leader for several years and directed a homeschool choir for 2 years before Nashville Notes offered choirs. She also enjoyed coaching the juniors at Ambassador Speech & Debate in Franklin for 3 years. When she’s not immersed in Nashville Notes activities, she can be found performing with local pit orchestras, singing in her church choir, and managing a restaurant in Franklin. In her free time she enjoys perusing the web for the latest singing groups, studying teaching methods, playing piano and other instruments, holding any baby within a 10 foot radius, and always singing whenever possible!
Jazz Band: Brian Biederman & Alex Troge
(picture coming soon)
Brian Biederman is originally from Long Island, New York and moved down to Nashville to attend Vanderbilt University in 2006, where he received his Bachelors and Masters degrees in education and music performance. Prior to his acceptance to Vanderbilt, Brian was fortunate to study under some of the greatest living jazz musicians in the world at Manhattan School of Music’s Pre-Collegiate Jazz Program. Through that experience Brian developed a life-long passion for improvisation, and jazz education.
Brian has taught band and choir at the middle and high school levels for public and charter schools in Chicago, New York, and Tennessee. In 2013, Brian co-founded Littlestone Group; a nonprofit organization, headquartered in Nashville, that seeks to provide youth, as well as adults with intellectual disabilities, with opportunities to foster community and personal enrichment. Littlestone Group’s flagship program, Littlestone Summer Music Festival, is a summer music camp that includes many Nashville Notes musicians and he is excited to expand his pedagogy to as many Nashville Notes musicians as he can!
Drum Line: Jim Cowan
A 1988 graduate of the Ball State University School of Music in Muncie, Indiana, Mr. Cowan has an extensive background in orchestral, concert and marching percussion. His orchestral percussion credits include serving as timpanist and/or principal percussionist for symphony orchestras at Purdue University; Ball State University; Kokomo, IN; Elkhart, IN; South Bend, IN; and at E91st Street Christian Church in Indianapolis, IN. He has served as the marching percussion instructor for Concord High School and Winchester High School in Indiana and has conducted marching percussion camps for Fairfield High School in Indiana and for Frederick High School in Frederick, MD. Mr. Cowan has performed in numerous community bands throughout central and northern Indiana and has been featured as a xylophone or marimba soloist for many of these organizations as well. He and his family currently reside in Murfreesboro, TN and he works in a management capacity for Bridgestone Americas based in Nashville, TN.
Percussion Ensemble & Jazz Class:
(bio coming soon)
Mallets: Joy Rogers
A native of Franklin, TN, Joy’s earliest musical training began on the piano, but her interests soon expanded to include a collection of woodwind instruments as well. A Nashville Notes alumni, she now serves the organization as a mallets instructor, section leader, choir accompanist, Community Outreach Coordinator, and next year – Music History teacher. She also maintains a small private studio of flute and piano students. Joy’s musical passions lie in studying theory, history, and worship music, all areas she has been blessed to be a part of in Nashville Notes. Alongside her love of music, Joy has a heart for teaching, missions, and intercultural communications. Joy currently attends Middle Tennessee State University studying Music, Entrepreneurship, and Global Studies.
Worship Band: Layne Rogers
(picture and bio coming soon)
String Orchestra: Susan Steffens
Susan Steffens started violin at age 9, and music has been a part of her life ever since. She received her bachelor’s of violin performance at Evangel University in 1992 while at the same time playing in the Springfield Mo. Symphony Orchestra and at music shows in Branson Mo. Shortly after receiving her degree, she moved with her husband to Nashville TN. She currently homeschools her 6 children, plays violin in the Trevecca Symphony Orchestra, plays church music, works as a freelance musician, and teaches private students. When not pillaging small villages or singing opera, Susan also enjoys arranging music, reading, gardening, and playing piano, cello, and harp.
String Orchestra & Praise Station Choir: Emily Mok
(bio coming soon)
Joyful Harmony Choir & Chamber Singers:
Renee’ Chapman received her Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education and Vocal Pedagogy from East Carolina University. After graduating, she taught choral music at the elementary, middle, and high school levels for three years in North Carolina before marrying and moving to Florida, where she continued to teach middle and high school chorus, as well as private voice and piano lessons, for four years. Since then, she has remained active in music through choirs, worship teams, and teaching children’s and youth choirs at her church. She is the mom of two Nashville Notes musicians, and also has a daughter at Union University and a son at Franklin High School. She is thrilled to be a member of the Nashville Notes staff, and excited and blessed to share the gift of music with the talented students that she teaches.
Cherubs Choir, Joyful Harmony Choir, & Chamber
Singers: Valerie Trantum
Valerie Trantum is the mother of two Nashville Notes musicians and the wife of a faithful music fan. She hails from the northeast, where she earned a bachelors degree in piano performance from Gettysburg College and a masters degree in choral conducting and music education from the University of Hartford Hartt School of Music. Mrs. Trantum thanks God for the many opportunities she has had over the past 20 years to work with musicians of all ages, in church, school and community situations. She feels incredibly blessed to be working with the amazing singers and directors in Nashville Notes.
Grace Notes Choir: Valerie Gibbs
Valerie Gibbs began her musical training in the piano studio at age 7. After nine years of lessons that produced marginal results, and a brief stint playing flute in the middle school band, she finally found her voice on the stage and in choir. She went on to perform in numerous plays, musicals, and even operettas, and majored in vocal performance at Asbury University. After graduation, she performed professionally at Derby Dinner Playhouse in southern Indiana before making Nashville her home. Not one to be pigeonholed, Valerie has had a variety of fun and creative jobs including, but not limited to: gymnastics coach, photographer, academic advisor, publicist, writer/editor, demo singer, and, of course, music teacher. In addition to teaching, Valerie has had the opportunity to minister both locally and globally in churches, missions, orphanages, and prisons. Valerie feels blessed to sing with the Grace Notes choir each Tuesday. Her other interests include reading, baking, marathons (the Netflix kind, not running!), and all things Disney. Valerie and her family (husband Scott and daughters Reagan and Presley) love to vacation together, and try to visit Walt Disney World at least once a year.
Tuesday Choir: Mindy Johnson
Mindy received her music education at Middle Tennessee State University, and has taught music for elementary and middle schools around the Tennessee area. She has performed with the Nashville Opera, published a contemporary Christian music album, and can be seen occasionally singing/recording background vocals for different independent artists in the area. She coaches different sports teams such as basketball, leads a 242 group (small group) and teaches Sunday School second grade at her home church, Fellowship Bible Church in Brentwood. Mindy has two children- fourth and seventh grade- and her oldest is doing band and choir at Nashville Notes and the youngest will join in the fall of 2016. Her favorite Bible verse is Hebrew 11:1 “Faith is being sure of what we hope for, and certain of what we don’t see.”
Recorder Class: Abby Cowan
(bio coming soon)
Music Theory: Mirandi Herrenbruck
Mirandi Herrenbruck grew up in Evansville, Indiana, and married her high school Hoosier sweetheart. She is thankful for her musical heritage that stems from both Classical and jazz veins in both sides of her family. Since earning her Bachelors of Music in piano performance from Furman University in 2002, she has given private instruction in piano, flute, and theory in the Nashville area while focusing on the home education of her three children. Because of the incredible inspiration she received during her time studying composition and music theory under both Dr. Charles Tompkins and Dr. Mark Kilstofte, Mirandi is keenly interested in pouring into young minds and fanning the music theory flames in musicians of all ages. As the mother of three Nashville Notes musicians and wife of a music enthusiast, she is passionate to see the next generation of musicians grow not only into excellent players who are grounded in the grammar of music, but also lifelong lovers and supporters of music. She adores seeing those “lightbulb moments” in her students; as such, it is with great delight and gratitude that Mirandi works with the enthusiastic and hard-working musicians and directors of Nashville Notes.
Worldviews: Meagan Wuest
Meagan has been a presence at Nashville Notes for the last 15 years, first as a student, and then serving in various capacities. She has always had a passion for history, drawing her to work at the Carnton Plantation as a historical interpreter for over 3 years before becoming the Carnton Wedding and Event Planner, her current full time position. She studied Worldviews at Bryan College and continued her studies beyond those classes as she came to understand the relevance of people’s worldview in every area of life. Her class explores cultural worldviews and how they affect the arts and more. Taking a worldview course in a student’s last year of high school to prepare them for the college campus or work arena is strongly recommended whether through Nashville Notes or elsewhere!
Ballet Foundations: Elizabeth Mudd & Allison Cowan
(pictures and bios coming soon)
Music Foundations: Bob Gerstenberger (Pastor Bob)
Bob Gerstenberger (also known as Pastor Bob) graduated from Olivet Nazarene University with a B.S. degree in Music Education, and certified to teach General, Instrumental and Vocal music K-12. He began his teaching career at a Christian school in Aurora, Colorado where he taught general music, speech and drama, instrumental music, and directed musicals such as Annie, Fiddler on the Roof, and Sound of Music just to name a few. It was in Aurora that he felt a call to music ministry and after teaching there for 7 years, Pastor Bob went to Madison, Indiana to become a music pastor at Madison First Assembly Church where he was in charge of praise and worship teams, choir, a student instrumental ensemble, and musical productions. In 1994 he expanded his ministry as the Children’s Pastor of Lakeview Christian Center also directing children’s musicals with over 100 children attending the weekly practices. After serving as the Children’s Pastor for 6 years, he helped to pioneer a new church plant from Lakeview and began teaching private instrumental lessons in the public schools as well. In 2006 Pastor Bob and his wife, Debbie, felt a call to plant a family integrated church in Franklin, TN. Coming along with him and his lovely wife, came his gift for teaching music to children. He has been teaching music classes in Spring Hill, at Grace Christian Academy and at Lighthouse Christian Academy as well as serving as pastor at Cross Generations Church in Franklin.
Go to: http://www.homeschoolmusicclasstn.com to find out more about Pastor Bob’s exciting and fun classes!