Our Conductors

LAKELAND STRINGS CONDUCTOR; EDUCATION DIRECTOR

Carol S. Meiseles, has been conducting Lakeland ensembles since 1990.  In that time, she has experienced the growth of the program in the number of students and ensembles, but more importantly, the aesthetic and educational value that Lakeland provides for its students and families.

Since retiring from teaching music and conducting the orchestras at West Morris Central High School, she devotes her time to conducting Lakeland Strings, where she also serves as Education Director, teaches at the Paterson Music Project and private lessons. As Education Director, she has helped establish performance benchmarks for the orchestras, developed a ‘mini-lesson” program for Prelude students, and continues to promote Lakeland for its artistic value to young people and families.

Carol finds it both an honor and a pleasure to work and teach with the Lakeland staff and Board members. Their dedication and professional experience has helped Lakeland Youth Symphony prosper as a non-profit musical organization.

YOUTH ENSEMBLE CONDUCTOR; PRELUDE INSTRUCTOR:

Sue On, B.A. in Music Business and Music Education, is a graduate of William Paterson University where she served as orchestra concertmaster under the direction of Sandra Dackow. Sue is passionately devoted to sharing her love of music with students of all ages. Originally from Connecticut, Sue currently teaches private violin, viola, cello, and piano lessons at her home studio in Parsippany, New Jersey. During the summer, she travels across the nation to various Suzuki Institutes teaching violin, piano, and music history.  Sue formerly worked at “Little Kids Rock,” a non-profit organization dedicated to teaching instrumental music in hundreds of public schools. She helped research, create and distribute curriculum that is used by over 100,000 students nation-wide. She has also studied with the New York Grand Opera alongside the founder, and esteemed Julliard professor, Vincent La Selva. Additionally, she has studied violin with the late Cynthia Prentice, Claudia Tondi, Franco Gennarelli, and jazz violinist Scott Tixier. When Sue isn’t teaching you can find her conducting a youth orchestra or performing with the South Florida Symphony Orchestra as a section violinist or with the New Jersey Intergenerational Orchestra as concert mistress.

LAKELAND PHILHARMONIA CONDUCTOR

Theresa Kemp is an award-winning graduate of the John J. Cali School of Music at Montclair State University. Theresa gained valuable experience from working with the Shanghai Quartet while a student. Now, she excels, not only as a cellist and cello instructor, but as a music educator with an emphasis on strings in the Clifton public school system, a district that boasts 1,000 strings players.  Her passion for children to learn and love music led her to spend three years with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra’s CHAMPS program as a teaching artist, weekly navigating the challenges of a large group class for beginning string musicians. This year, Theresa officially joined the teaching artist faculty of the Paterson Music Project, heading up a team of teachers at one of the PMP site locations.  Her motto of “public praise; private correction” exemplifies her desire to create a positive, nurturing environment while challenging each child to fulfill his/her potential.  Theresa also uses her talents, volunteering for Morris Arts events, and playing cello for hospital patients in the Creative Arts and Healing Program for the Atlanticare Regional Medical Center.  Lakeland Youth Symphony is privileged to have a cellist/teacher/conductor of her caliber as part of our conducting team this year.

SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA CONDUCTOR; MUSIC DIRECTOR

Petko Dimitrov, a native of Bulgaria, is currently Music Director of Lakeland Youth Symphony.  He also presently serves as Music Director of the New Symphony Orchestra in Sofia, Bulgaria. Mr. Dimitrov teaches orchestral performance at the School of Mahanaim. Previously, Petko Dimitrov has served as Music Director of the Western Connecticut Youth Orchestra, and Artistic Director and Conductor of the Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra’s summer series at Lasdon Park in Katonah, New York. He has also served as Assistant Conductor of the Ridgefield Symphony, Princeton Symphony and Symphony in C. Mr. Dimitrov had his debut at Carnegie Hall in 2007, Avery Fisher Hall in 2008 and Alice Tully Hall in 2015. In the spring of 2007, Petko led WCYO on tour in Austria and performed in prestigious concert venues such as Haydnsaal in Eisenstadt and Schlossberg in Graz. As Assistant Conductor of the Haddonfield Symphony, Mr. Dimitrov was awarded a Bruno Walter Memorial Foundation Fellowship in the 2007-2008 season, which recognizes accomplished young conductors and provides them with a monetary award to further develop their career. Mr. Dimitrov has been selected twice among the finalists of the George Solti International Conducting Competition.

PRELUDE INSTRUCTOR

Angel Liu, grew up in a home surrounded by the music of her mother’s piano students. She began playing the violin at the age of seven and eventually found herself in the Lakeland Youth Symphony during her late elementary and middle school years. Her undergraduate degrees are in both music education and violin performance from the Mason Gross School of the Arts. Ms. Liu was an active member of the Rutgers Symphony Orchestra and MusicaRaritana; she won Rutgers Chamber Music Competition a total of three times. Ms. Liu has also played with the Livingston Symphony Orchestra and Chester Baroque Orchestra. Ms. Liu strives to not only be a talented performer, but also strives to be an instinctive teacher who shares her love of music with every age group. Her attention to detail, nurturing manner, and ability to make work fun, provide our students with a first-class foundation in violin playing, developing habits for future success. Ms. Liu is the current orchestra director at Thomas A. Edison Middle School in West Orange.