Meet the Instructors
Christine Cacioppo attended the School of Music and Honors College at Kent State University, where she studied both piano and harpsichord and received a Bachelor of Music in piano performance. She was awarded a fellowship to attend New York University and received a Master of Arts in musicology. She began her teaching career in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she taught piano both privately and as an affiliate of the Harvard-Radcliffe Office for the Arts. Since fall 1998, she has been visiting instructor of music at Haverford College, where she developed “Introduction to Piano,” a unique course that builds basic piano and theory skills and explores music history by way of keyboard literature. Christine has authored a textbook for that course, Classic Piano for the Adult Beginner, and also produced Treasures from the Piano Bench, Volumes I & II - collections of original piano compositions by famous composers that students love to play and instructors love to teach. "Mrs. C." has been teaching piano to boys at The Haverford School for more than 20 years.
Anna Kopansky received her Bachelor of Arts in piano instruction with highest honors from Stefan Nyaga College of Music, and Master of Arts in piano instruction with highest honors from Gavril Musichescu Conservatory in Kishnev, Moldova, USSR. She also attended Rimsky-Korsakow Conservatory of Music in St. Petersburg, Russia as a Resident-in-training. In addition to becoming a laureate of the National Music Competition in Kishinev and playing as a soloist on international tours, she has taught a number of prize-winning students on both national and international levels in the U.S., the former Soviet Union, and Europe. Kopansky is also the accompanist to our choral organizations.
Jennifer Rossiter completed her B.A. in music at Bates College, where she studied voice and piano and pursued graduate study at The Hartt School of Music and Wesleyan University. A music educator and piano teacher for more than 15 years, Jennifer currently teaches piano at The Holy Child School of Rosemont and conducts private lessons with several area students. She specializes in pop, jazz, blues and classical genres.
Annie Pulaski holds a Bachelor of Arts from Smith College, a master’s in violin performance from the University of Massachusetts, and a professional studies diploma from Temple University’s Esther Boyer College of Music. Her teachers have included William DePasquale and David Arben of the Philadelphia Orchestra. She has performed with the Opera Company of Philadelphia and the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia. She has also performed numerous summers in Charleston, S.C. and Spoleto, Italy, with the Spoleto Festival of Two Worlds. Ms. Pulaski is the director of The Conservatory and the string orchestras at The Haverford School. She is a certified Suzuki violin instructor and has worked with many master teachers, including Linda Fiore and Ronda Cole. In 2009, she piloted a violin program for ESF Dream Camp at Girard College.
Born in Philadelphia, Valerie Vuolo first began studying the violin at the age of four under her mother, Diana, a former student of Dorothy DeLay of the Juilliard School of Music. Valerie went on to study under Emlyn Ngai (Concertmaster of Philadelphia-based Baroque ensemble Tempesta di Mare) at the Hartt School of Music in Hartford, Connecticut, completing a Bachelor of Music degree in violin performance and graduating with honors in 2007. She has also been coached by Linda Fiore and Teri Einfeldt (Suzuki), Anthea Kreston (Amelia Piano Trio), Anton Miller (soloist), Leonid Sigal (Concertmaster, Hartford Symphony Orchestra), Kathy Meng Robinson and Keith Robinson (Miami String Quartet), and Pamela Frank (soloist) among others.
Valerie has continued pursuing her love and passion for music, diversifying her performance skills to play a wide variety of musical genres. She is active in the Philadelphia music scene, performing regularly with the Avalare String Quartet, a rock string quartet based out of Philadelphia, and the Alfred James Band, a cello-driven acoustic rock band that tours nationally and internationally. Valerie brings her passion for music of all kinds to the classroom, encouraging students to embrace a wide variety of musical styles while teaching them the foundational skills necessary to succeed with their instruments and have a lifetime of musical enjoyment.
Julia has played with various ensembles in the Philadelphia area, including the Philadelphia Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra, Prometheus Chamber Orchestra, ConcertOPERA Philadelphia, and the Southeastern Pennsylvania Symphony Orchestra. In addition, she is a co-founder and member of Trio Amaranth, a piano trio based in Philadelphia. Julia received her Bachelor of Music from Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music in Bloomington, Indiana, and is soon to receive a Master of Music from Temple University. In addition to maintaining a private music studio, Julia serves on faculty at Tune Up Philly and Philadelphia Region Youth String Music (PRSYM).
Michael Brodine received his Bachelor of Arts from Villanova University and studied guitar with Chuck Anderson. Brodine plays a wide range of musical styles including, country, bluegrass, jazz, classical, and rock 'n' roll. In addition to serving as the staff classical guitarist for the Romig, Carney, and Lewis orchestras, he has performed with the bluegrass band, The Keystone Ramblers, and with a rock 'n' roll band that went on to be #49 on the Billboard charts. Brodine writes and performs original music. Some of his compositions have been recorded and played on national radio.
Jonathan Dichter holds a bachelor’s degree from Temple University. His teachers include Denis Sandole, Joe Sgro, Pat Martino, and Steve Giordano. He performs with Gypsy jazz virtuoso Stephane Wrembel and has led numerous jazz, blues, bluegrass, folk, big band, and rock ensembles. He has performed in many venues, including The Kimmel Center, Philadelphia Folk Festival, Chris’ Jazz Café, and Sellersville Theater. Dichter has produced seven CDs and is currently working on another recording. In 1998, he created a summer concert series with Philadelphia’s own Gene Shay that continues to thrive with a tradition of music and community spirit.
Dichter has taught guitar for more than 25 years, both privately and at schools including The Philadelphia School and The Baldwin School, and is proud to have taught the first guitarist to win the prestigious Greenfield Philadelphia Orchestra Competition. Through his musical versatility and deep appreciation of each student’s unique learning style, he has developed an individualized teaching method. Dichter recognizes that the best approach to teaching music is by fostering and encouraging a student’s natural affinity for music.
Norman Manno holds a Bachelor of Music from the Philadelphia Musical Academy where he studied clarinet with Joseph Smith and alto saxophone with Vince Trombetta. He has studied jazz saxophone with Al Stauffer and Larry McKenna. Manno directed The Haverford School Jazz Ensemble for 12 years. Currently a freelance musician, he has performed with big bands and major entertainers. He is a founding member of the Philadelphia Jazz Ensemble, for which he has composed and performed original compositions.
In addition to being a trumpet player and teacher, Charles Cacioppo is also a composer and scholar. He has written chamber, vocal, orchestral, jazz, and electronic music, and has earned degrees in music from Cornell University, UMD College Park, and SUNY Purchase. His scholarly work covers a wide range of topics from Renaissance music to hip-hop, and his dissertation dealt with jazz trumpet solos. A native of Haverford, Charles grew up studying at the Philadelphia Clef Club of Jazz, and performing with the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra. He has performed at some of the city’s most beloved venues including the Mann Center, the Kimmel Center, the Curtis Institute, and Ortlieb’s, as well as at several museums, schools, churches, hotels, and restaurants.
Drummer Phil Giordano, whose band plays in the great tradition of Count Basie and Woody Herman, is both founder and music director of the Phil Giordano Jazz Orchestra.
Born in 1951, he studied drums privately with some of the finest jazz drummers: Mel Lewis, Philly Joe Jones, Sonny Igoe, and Joe Morello. Giordano attended the Philadelphia Music Academy and studied percussion with Nick D’Amato and arranging with Manny Album and Jim Amdei. He has performed with the Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey Orchestras, the Four Aces, the Howard Lanin Orchestra, Al Grey and Jimmy Forest, and most recently with Ted Curson and Pat Martino.
Abundant Sounds magazine voted Giordano “Most Popular Musician,” and his big band was voted most popular jazz ensemble in Philadelphia by the Philadelphia Daily News.
Carole Latimer is originally from Nova Scotia, Canada. She is active as a soprano soloist and voice teacher in the Philadelphia area. She has taught voice, French Diction for Singers, and Opera History at Eastern University for the past 13 years. A long time member of the Opera Philadelphia Chorus, Carole was recently seen in Mendelssohn’s Elijah with the Choristers of Upper Dublin, Die Meistersinger at The Metropolitan Opera, Dialogues of the Carmelites with Curtis Opera Kimmel Center Perlman Theater, and Nabucco at the Academy of Music. She holds post-graduate degrees in opera performance and a master’s in vocal performance from the College-Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati.