Born in Sydney Australia, raised in Jakarta Indonesia and educated in Boston Massachusetts, Jill's compositions and vocal style benefits from a wealth of diverse musical influences from the traditional Javanese scale of the gamelan to the melancholic blues of the American South.
At 19 Jill began her course of study at the Berklee College of Music. Her thirst for knowledge drove her to excel in a variety of musical endeavors including the Tower of Power Funk Ensemble, The Commercial Pop/Rock Recording Ensemble, The Berklee International Folk Festival and the Afro Pop Ensemble. The experience of such a stylistically eclectic education is evident in her approach to the musical standards of today. Jill was also a recipient of The Berklee Achievement-based Scholarship at the recommendation of her teachers in recognition of outstanding scholastic achievement in music. Since earning her B.M. from Berklee in 2004, Jill has performed and recorded with many artists and session musicians in Boston, Washington DC, Los Angeles, Sydney and Jakarta. In 2005 she also had the privilege of performing at the Las Vegas Convention Center to present the Privia line of Keyboards for Casio Corporation.
After spending five years based out of Sydney, Australia, Jill recently relocated to the United States. She currently resides in Los Angeles where she manages and performs with her band "Soul Seasonings" www.soulseasoningsband.com together with her husband, saxophonist/musical director, David Olivas. She is also currently hard at work as she continues to explore the Jazz idiom and its history through her own original compositions. Aside from being a performer, she teaches private contemporary music theory, piano lessons and coaches vocal students of all ages. Jill is also a three-year veteran instructor of the internationally renown Children's music program "Kindermusik" and is currently teaching the "Musical Moments" group piano classes for adults, teens, and kids at Knauer Pianos in Tarzana CA
Irina Brener, a concert pianist, has received her Bachelor of Music, Master of Music and Artist's Diploma at Manhattan School of Music, NY majoring in Piano Performance and Pedagogy. As an instructor Ms. Brener has taught a vast number of students, ages 4-75 some of which were accepted to the World's most famous Music Schools including Manhattan School of Music, NY, Mannes College of Music, NY and Academy of Jewish Religion, Los Angeles where they pursue their Music degrees. As an active solo and chamber music performer, Irina Brener has had recitals in such renowned venues as Carnegie Hall, NY, Steinway Hall, NY, Suolahti Saal, Finland and others.
Currently Ms. Brener is holding a position of Coach / Accompanist at the University of Redlands where she teaches Undergraduate and Graduate students. Recently Irina Brener has moved to Woodland Hills and has openings in her piano studio where she would love to share her comprehensive teaching experience in Piano, Music Theory, Music History and Chamber Music. Ms. Brener provides lessons at students' homes and Knauer Pianos, Tarzana.
American pianist Carlos Gardels has been a student of the piano since age seven, and has performed extensively throughout the United States and Mexico.
Born in Los Angeles, Carlos presented his concerto debut at age fifteen as soloist in the Rachmaninoff Third Piano Concerto with the Pasadena Summer Youth Orchestra under the direction of Robert Allen Gross in the Wilshire Ebell Theatre, and has since gone on appear at numerous festival and venues across the country, including Steinway Hall and the Yamaha artist salon in New York City, The Bowdoin International Music festival, PIANOSUMMER at New Paltz, and was selected to give the inaugural recital of the recently founded "Young Artist's Concerts (YAC)" series at the Doheney Mansion in Los Angeles. Most recently was a performance of the Schumann Piano Concerto with the YAC concert orchestra in the Wilshire Ebell Theatre.
He has received awards in numerous competitions, including the National Society of Arts and Letters competition, Long Island Choral Society instrumental competition, Young Musician's foundation Scholarship competition, and Cypress College piano competition.
Mr. Gardels holds degrees from the Manhattan School of Music and Indiana University where he was a scholarship student at both institutions. His principal teachers have been Dr. Jacqueline Salas, Haksoon Swiatkowski, Jeffrey Cohen, Evelyne Brancart, and Emile Naoumoff. He has completed additional coaching with Vladimir Feltsman, David Dubal, John Perry, Jerome Lowenthal, Cyprien Kasaris, and Daniel Pollack.
In addition to his performing activities, Carlos is also an established pedagogue, and has served on the faculty of Indiana University's pre-college division, the California Academy of Music, as well as having run a private studio for the past five years.
When Sarah was small her house was always full of pianos, talk of pianos, and people playing pianos. Her formal studies began at the age of four, under the tutelage of San Fernando Valley Symphony Orchestra member Joanna Ezrin, who remained her teacher until Sarah graduated and left for college. Sarah played piano in the Agoura High Schools acclaimed Jazz "A" Band. She performed in the prestigious Essentially Ellington Festival in New York City, with the jazz band, one of only fifteen bands chosen for this international honor. The bronze medalist in the Liana Cohen Festival in 2003, Sarah was also an award-winning participant in the festivals and programs of the Music Teachers association of California. In the 2007-2008 year she was a winner in the branch MTAC Junior Bach Festival and also the Contemporary Music Festival.
Sarah completed her Advanced level Certificate of Merit in 2007, and was invited to play at the MTAC annual conventions every year since she was seven. This is an honor reserved for individuals who excel in music theory and sight - reading as well as demonstrating the highest level of performance. In 2009 Sarah had the honor of playing with the San Fernando Symphony Orchestra as a solo artist performing Maestreo James Domine's Nocturne, Concerto for Piano no 2. Sarah is also an accomplished music teacher that enjoys sharing her love for music with her students.
Nomi Abadi is a professional pianist and singer/songwriter in Los Angeles. A child prodigy, she began playing piano at the age of three, and made her first classical appearance as a guest soloist with the Orange County Chamber Orchestra at age five. She was tutored classically by her father, who also played the role of her manager. Gracing TV shows such as Crook and Chase, This is Amazing!, Showbiz Today, Nomi also was featured on the front page of the LA Times and the Orange County Register. She has performed throughout the United States as a child, and completed a three-week tour of Eastern Europe at age 11. Nomi found her passion teaching at age fifteen, and has built student bases on the West side (Santa Monica and surrounding areas) as well as North Hollywood, and its surrounding areas. It is more important to Nomi than anything that her students have fun playing piano, and learn the proper tools of discipline. (As Chopin said, 'There is no freedom without discipline.'!) Nomi teaches classical and popular music, and chooses exciting and challenging material for her students, while focusing on technique, theory, exercises, ear training and sight reading. Nomi teaches all ages, beginning, intermediate and advanced.
Here is Nomi's first concert with the Orange County Chamber Orchestra: