Meryl Abt - Clarinet
Clarinetist Meryl Abt has enjoyed a long and diversified career as an orchestral and Broadway musician in New York City. She is a member of the Orchestra of St. Luke's and performes often with New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Stamford Symphony, and the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra.
On Broadway, Ms. Abt was a regular member of the orchestras for Mary Poppins and Candide, and is currently a substitute player on The Phantom of the Opera and Les Misérables. Past Broadway credits also include The King and I, The Sound of Music, and Ragtime.
Julie Benko - Soprano
Julie Benko, a graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, is a versatile performer who has appeared on stages across North America. She made her Broadway debut in the 2015 revival of Les Miserables, but can currently be found just up the street at the Broadway Theatre, where she performs in Bartlett Sher’s recently acclaimed revival of Fiddler on the Roof. Julie was an original company member in both the First National Tour of Duncan Sheik’s rock-musical Spring Awakening and the 25th Anniversary Tour of Les Miserables, where she eventually took over the role of Cosette. Regionally, she has been seen as Cosette in Les Miserables at the Amarillo Opera, North Carolina Theater, and Paper Mill Playhouse. Other regional credits include Olive in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz at the Downtown Cabaret Theater. Perhaps her most memorable theatrical experience thus far, however, entailed creating the leading role of Rebeca Frankel in Barrington Stage Company’s world premiere musical The Golem of Havana (a 2015 IRNE Best New Play nominee), which recounted the tale of a Jewish family of Holocaust survivors living in Cuba at the dawn of Castro’s revolution. Another career highlight includes singing Les Miserables’ “One Day More” on Good Morning America, America’s Got Talent, and alongside the stars at the 85th Academy Awards ceremony.
Julie, too, has found success as a cabaret artist. She performed her autobiographical one-woman show Wandering Star and her jazz duo show Blame It On Our Youth (with Jason Yeager) at sold-out venues across the northeast. Her song “Thanksgivvukah” was featured on CNN’s Belief Blog as one of the “Eight Ways to Celebrate” the once-in-a-lifetime holiday, and she is currently developing a wider catalog of original musical material to be recorded on her debut album later this year. Julie also regularly volunteers with VocalEase, an organization that provides senior centers and nursing homes with Broadway-level entertainment at zero cost, and is constantly involved in developmental readings and workshops of new works at venues throughout New York City.
You can discover more about Julie by visiting her website, www.JulieBenko.com. She also invites you to follow her on Twitter/Instagram @JewJewJewlie.
Kiku Enomoto - Violin
Violinist Kiku Enomoto maintains a dynamic and versatile career that redefines the notion of a multi faceted musician. A native of Las Vegas, NV, Kiku began her early studies as a violinist at the Nevada School of the Arts, and later made her solo debut at the age of ten with the Las Vegas Symphony Orchestra. Since moving to New York to study at the Manhattan School of Music, Kiku has had the opportunity to collaborate with artists and shows in a variety of musical genres.
As a classical violinist, she has performed with Luciano Pavarotti, Pierre Boulez, John Williams, Mark Morris Dance Company, ICE, and Alarm Will Sound. On the popular music circuit, she has collaborated with Jay-Z, Beyonce, Kanye West, Sufjan Stevens, Adele, Tony Bennett, and Mary J Blige, to name a few. Kiku is committed to playing and premiering new music and has worked with numerous ensembles and composers worldwide. She is a member of the eclectic electro-acoustic group, Ensemble Pamplemousse.
Her Broadway credits include Ragtime, West Side Story, Follies, Nice Work If You Can Get It, The Bridges of Madison County, On the Town, Allegiance, and The Public Theater's run of Giant.
Kiku's teachers and mentors include Mary Straub, Hal Grossman, Teresa Ling, Neil Weintrob, Enrico DiCecco, and a personal friend as well as a patron of the arts, Mrs. Bernice Fischer.
Cynde Iverson - Bassoon
Cynde Iverson performs with many of NYC finest ensembles including the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, American Ballet Theater and is a member of the orchestra for Fiddler on the Roof on Broadway. She is the Principal Bassoonist for both the Stamford and New Haven Symphonies. Cynde performs each summer at Caramoor with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, at the White Mountain Festival and the Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival. She has been a guest artist with both the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. Ms. Iverson is a member of the Wind Trio of NY and the Wind Soloists of NY and was a member of the Jazz Ensemble, Episteme with Anthony Davis. Ms. Iverson holds a B. M from Indiana University where she studies with Leonard Sharrow and a M.M. from Juilliard studying with Stephen Maxym.
Mary Ann McSweeney - Bass
Mary Ann McSweeney was born in Aptos, California. She started playing piano at the age of five and then began studying the violin at age 8. In high school she fell in love with the acoustic bass while watching Ray Brown perform at the Concord Jazz Festival. She was chosen to play at the Monterey Jazz Festival at age 16 with the All Star band fronted by Thad Jones and Mel Lewis. McSweeney has played with jazz legends Dizzy Gillespie, Joanne Brackeen and Lee Konitz, Gil Goldstein and Bucky Pizzarelli. She has also played for famous conductors, Leonard Bernstein, Lalo Schifrin, and John Williams. McSweeney has performed with Renee Rosness, Vic Juris, Ken Peplowski, Dennis Mackrel, Lewis Nash and Larry Goldings. She has performed with her quintet at the Sexial Jazz Festival in Portugal and the Mary Lou Williams Jazz Festival at the Kennedy Center. She has toured Europe and performed with David Krakouer’s Klezmer Madness and three time Tony award winning vocalist Audra McDonald. She has played for 27 Broadway shows including, Tony Award winning Avenue Q, Anything Goes, Next to Normal, and most recently the Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder. She has performed at the White House with the Eli Yamin Quintet for a special event with President Obama in attendance. She was musical director/arranger for three shows at Birdland in New York City featuring Jane Monheit. The program included her original arrangements from the Cole Porter musical, “Anything Goes”.
For information go to www.maryannmcsweeney.com
Kathleen Nester - Flute
Kathleen Nester is performing with the Roundabout Theater’s revival of She Loves Me. She is on leave from An American in Paris where she is solo flutist. Other Broadway affiliations include the revival of Evita with Ricky Martin, Man of LaMancha with Brian Stokes Mitchell, and Woman in White, and as substitute for shows including South Pacific, Mary Poppins, Wicked, Phantom of the Opera, Secret Garden, Miss Saigon.
Kathleen is a member of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and the Stamford Symphony. She has performed with Orchestra of St. Luke’s, New York Philharmonic, New York City Opera, Iris Orchestra in Memphis, TN. She has been a participant in the Oklahoma International and Mostly Mozart Festivals, and has been featured with the Craftsbury Chamber Players, Musicians’ Accord and The Pit Stop Players. She has recorded for many movie soundtracks, including Julie and Julia, Tower Heist, Secret Life of Walter Mitty, among others; and she has performed alto and bass flute on recordings with violinist Joshua Bell and with singer Ute Lemper and Jane Monheit.
A graduate of the Manhattan School of Music, Ms. Nester has served on the faculty of New York University.
Rheagan Osteen - French Horn
Rheagan Osteen, formerly principal horn of the Amazonas Philharmonic in Brazil, has played with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra, Westchester Philharmonic, The aNew York Pops, Greenwich Symphony Orchestra, Stamford Symphony Orchestra, American Composer’s Orchestra, Brooklyn Philharmonic, and the Long Island Philharmonic, and in musicals on Broadway including Follies, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, Jesus Christ Superstar, The Phantom of the Opera, Ragtime, The King and I at Lincoln Center, and the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. She recently completed the latest revival of Bernstein’s On the Town at the Lyric Theater and also played the premiere run of Maury Yeston’s Death Takes a Holiday.
Rheagan played Mozart’s Horn Concerto No. 2, Haydn’s Horn Concerto No. 1, and the Brandenburg Concerto No. 1 as a soloist with The Chelsea Symphony. An avid chamber musician, Rheagan is a founding member of The Aeolian Collective and has given performances and masterclasses across the country with Intrada Winds. Rheagan can be heard on the latest cast recording of On the Town, the original cast album of Death Takes a Holiday, and Celebrating the American Spirit with Kelli O’Hara and Ron Raines.
Setsuko Otake - Oboe
Oboist Setsuko Otake enjoys a diverse career as a chamber musician, orchestral performer, and teacher. As a soloist, she has performed with the New York Symphonic Ensemble on a tour of Japan and Southeast Asia, and gave the premiere performance of Yoshihro Kanno's Water Leaf 4 for oboe and chamber orchestra with the North/South Consonance.
Throughout the U.S. and Japan, Setusko has presented chamber-music recitals with various woodwind quintets and trio groups—including a 2002 recital debut at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall. She currently holds the second oboe/English horn position with the Riverside Symphonia in Lambertville, New Jersey, and, as a freelance oboist, has regularly appeared with a number of Broadway shows, including On the Town, Les Misérables, The King and I, Peter Pan, The Wizard of Oz, Aida, Wicked, Ragtime, Porgy and Bess, and Mary Poppins.
Ms. Otake received her bachelor's degree from the Toho Gakuen School of Music, and her master's degree from the Manhattan School of Music, where she studied with former New York Philharmonic oboist Joseph Robinson. During the summer, she is an oboe and chamber-music coach at the Summerkeys Music Festival in Lubec, Maine.
Meg Zervoulis - Piano
Meg is a New Jersey born music director, arranger and classically trained pianist. Broadway: Finding Neverland (Rehearsal Pianist and Key 2/Accordion Sub), Matilda (Key 1 Sub), and Something Rotten (Key 1 Sub). Off-Broadway (Music Direction): Rated P...for Parenthood (Westside Theater, now in development with ABC Family), Chuckleball: Jailhouse Jocks (Snapple Center). Regional (Associate Music Direction): A Christmas Story, Bandstand, Ever After, Elf, and Oliver! at Paper Mill Playhouse. Meg has served as the music director/arranger/orchestrator for Paper Mill's Summer Musical Theatre Conservatory annual concert, New Voices, for the past 8 years. Workshops/Labs/Concerts: THE PROM (a new Broadway-Bound musical) by Martin/Beguelin/Sklar and directed by Casey Nicholaw, Stu for Silverton (NAMT 2014) by Peter Duchan and BREEDLOVE, Kooman and Dimond’s Dani Girl in the ASCAP/Disney Workshop and Andrea Grody’s Strange Faces (directed by John Rando.)
Meg is the music supervisor for Sheri Sanders’ ROCK THE PERFORMANCE, a new website which provides top notch audition and performance resources for today's musical theatre actors (www.rocktheperformance.com). She also helms Hotel Elefant, a chamber ensemble in NYC, and plays keyboard for the Big Apple Circus. Meg frequently appears as pianist/bandleader all over the country with Will and Anthony Nunziata (www.willandanthony.com).
Other residencies: Midtown Direct Rep, Mile Square Theatre, NJPAC, Pittsburgh CLO, Pittsburgh Ballet. Meg serves as music director at Kean and Montclair State Universities on a seasonal basis and is the collaborative pianist for the Multiple Woodwinds MM program at New Jersey City University. Education: Carnegie Mellon University - B.F.A. with University Honors, inaugural classes of the Goodspeed Opera House Musical Direction Intensive and the Marvin Hamlisch/ASCAP Broadway Conductors’ Program. Meg continues to be active as a music therapist and educator in public and charter schools in New Jersey and volunteers with Concerts in Motion and Sing for Hope in NYC. Member, Local 802 AFM. www.megzmusic.com