Who We Are
Douglas Locke - Violin/Viola
Artistic/executive director, founder and violin/viola teacher for Suzuki Music Columbus. Maintains a full teaching studio of Suzuki violin students and co-directs the Suzuki Music Columbus Tour Group. Adjunct Faculty at Otterbein College. Active in chamber music, particularly violin-duo literature with his wife Susan, and faculty coach for Chamber Music Connection. Principal Second Violin Newark Granville Symphony Orchestra. While at Capital University Conservatory of Music from 1994-2007 he served as violin faculty, director of Suzuki programs, concertmaster Capital/Bexley Community Orchestra. Bachelor of Music Performance in Violin from the University of Hartford Hartt School of Music, studying violin with Eric Rosenblith and Philip Setzer of the Emerson String Quartet. Master of Music Performance and Suzuki Pedagogy at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, completing long-term Suzuki teacher training with Carol Smith and Suzuki pioneer John Kendall.
Susan Locke - Violin/Viola
Artistic/executive director, founder and violin/viola teacher for Suzuki Music Columbus. Maintains a full teaching studio of Suzuki students and co-directs the Suzuki Music Columbus Tour Group. Adjunct Faculty at Otterbein College. Active in chamber music, particularly violin-duo literature with husband Doug, and faculty coach for Chamber Music Columbus. Personnel Manager and Violinist Newark-Granville Symphony Orchestra. While at Capital University Conservatory of Music from 1994-2007 she served as violin faculty and co-director of the Suzuki Summer Institute. Bachelor of Music Performance in Violin from the University of Hartford Hartt School of Music, studying viola with Scott Nicrenz and Rosemary Glyde. Master of Music Performance and Suzuki Pedagogy at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, completing long-term Suzuki teacher training with Carol Smith and Suzuki pioneer John Kendall.
Meet Our Suzuki Music Columbus Team!
Megan Stallard - Violin, Co-Director North Branch
Megan Stallard is co-director of the north branch of Suzuki Music Columbus. She taught orchestra and Suzuki violin for Delaware City Schools for seven years and spent one year teaching orchestra for Westerville Schools. She holds a Bachelor of Music Education from Capital University and a Master of Education from Ashland University. She taught Suzuki violin at Capital Suzuki Program internship from 2004-2007 and has registered Suzuki Association of the Americas teacher training through book 6.
Amy Rieske - Violin, Co-Director North Branch
Amy Rieske is co-director of the north branch of Suzuki Music Columbus. She was Music Faculty for Newark City Schools, served as Music Faculty Westerville City Schools (Ohio) and maintains a Suzuki violin studio with Suzuki Music Columbus. Bachelor of Music Education, Capital University. Suzuki violin teacher, Capital Suzuki Program internship, 2005 - 2008. Active member, Suzuki Association of the Americas (SAA) with registered training through book 6. Administrative assistant, Capital Suzuki Institute (summer camp) 2005 to present.
Casey Cook - Piano Accompanist
Casey L. Cook began piano study at the age of four and was accompanying by age ten. Two of her most influential teachers were Mary Craig Powell, who nurtured her musical growth for fifteen years and Dr. Nelita True at the Eastman School of Music. An accompanist for over 25 years, Ms. Cook has been honored to accompany national and regional honor choirs for the American Choral Directors Association, the Ohio Music Educators Association and the Ohio Choral Directors Association. Cook currently serves as principal accompanist at The Ohio State University School of Music where she is pianist for all five choral ensembles. In addition to her academic appointment Cook has, since 2000, served as pianist for the Columbus Symphony Orchestra Chorus. This position has enabled her to play for some of the finest conductors and soloists in the world. In 2011 she joined the CSO as an Associate Member of the orchestra. Cook is also the pianist for Suzuki Music Columbus and at Trinity United Methodist Church in Columbus.
Maria Di Meglio - Cello
Maria Di Meglio is a versatile musician with years of experience performing, teaching, and recording. Her performances have taken her from Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center to folk festivals in Australia, and everywhere in between. She was born and raised in the rich cultural tapestry of Brooklyn, NY, and first picked up a cello at her local public elementary school.
She received her undergraduate and master’s degree in cello performance from the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University. While at IU she was Peter Stumpf’s graduate assistant instructor. She has played in lessons and masterclasses for Janos Starker, Gary Hoffman, Sharon Robinson, Yael Weiss, Kevork Mardirossian, as well as for members of the Brentano and Borromeo Quartets. Her principal cello professors include Marion Feldman, Kalin Ivanov, Csaba Onczay, and Peter Stumpf.
As an orchestral musician, Maria served as associate principal cellist of the New York Festival Orchestra, and has also performed in the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic, Orchestra Kentucky, and Trans-Siberian Orchestra. She has performed under the baton of Leonard Slatkin, David Effron, Jamie Laredo, Arthur Fagen, Cliff Colnot, and Jonathan Strasser, among others.
Rachael Keplin - Violin/Viola
Rachael Keplin is a violist and string pedagogue in Columbus, Ohio. She holds a Master of Arts in string pedagogy from The Ohio State University, a Bachelor of Music in viola performance from Kennesaw State University, and is a certified Suzuki Method teacher. Rachael is the viola artist for Chamber Brews and performs with local orchestras such as the Central Ohio Symphony, McConnell Arts Center Chamber Orchestra, Westerville Symphony, and Newark Granville Symphony. She is passionate about youth outreach and serves as an orchestral coach for the Columbus Symphony Youth Orchestra and local Columbus schools. When she is not teaching, performing or practicing she is writing on pedagogy in her blog, Raising the Bottom Line.
Nicholas Locke - Violin
Nicholas has been part of Suzuki Music Columbus since its’ inception. He started as a student in 1997 and joined the faculty in 2013. His Suzuki teachers have included Linda and Roger Stieg and Rebecca White. He went on to study with David Bowlin of Oberlin Conservatory and Wan Bin Yim at Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music. He has done Suzuki training with Linda Stieg and Douglas and Susan Locke. He is an avid chamber musician, freelance musician, and member of the Newark Granville Symphony. Currently, Nicholas, is a luthier at The Loft Violin Shop. When not working on violins, teaching violin or playing violin, he enjoys playing with his dog Ollie and playing Super Smash Bros.
Christopher Moehlenkamp - Cello
Chris Moehlenkamp recently retired from the United States Air Force where he had served as principal cellist in the premier Air Force Symphony Orchestra and Concert Band for 23 years. During that time, he has continually maintained a private cello studio in his home in Northern Virginia and has been involved in Suzuki education as a parent, teacher cello group instructor, and chamber coach in his wife Nadine’s Suzuki violin studio. In addition, he has taught both chamber music and cello for many summers at the the Central Virginia Suzuki Institute. Chris’s Suzuki training includes study with Gilda Barston, Pam Devenport, Sally Gross, David Evenchick and Alice Vierra. A graduate of the University of Cincinnati’s prestigious College-Conservatory of Music, Mr. Moehlenkamp studied with Lynn Harrell, Lee Fiser and Peter Wiley and also performed in master classes for Zara Nelsova. Chris has appeared as featured soloist in numerous orchestras including the Knoxville Symphony, Knoxville Chamber Orchestra, Roanoke Symphony, Mount Vernon Orchestra, Prince William Symphony and the Air Force Symphony Orchestra and Concert Band. He has served as principal cellist of the Knoxville Symphony (TN) and of the Alexandria Symphony (VA), and assistant principal cellist of the Fairfax Symphony Orchestra (VA), as well. Chris relocated in the fall of 2012 to Columbus, Ohio where he is doing graduate work at Ohio State University and is looking forward to many new teaching and performing opportunities.
Nadine Moehlenkamp - Violin
Nadine Moehlenkamp, currently a resident of Columbus, Ohio, was founder, director, and primary violin instructor for the very active Woodbridge Suzuki Studio and its performing group The Shenandoah Junior Strings near Washington D.C. A music graduate of Miami University of Ohio in 1974, Nadine taught public school strings and was a freelance performer in the Cincinnati area for several years while studying violin and music education at the College Conservatory of Music, University of Cincinnati. At CCM, she received her MME in 1980. After being introduced to the Suzuki method at a summer institute, Nadine moved to Knoxville, TN to begin Suzuki teacher training with William Starr at the University of Tennessee. There, as well as studying Suzuki pedagogy and violin performance with Mr. Starr, Nadine joined the faculty of the University of Tennessee Suzuki program and became a member of the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra and Chamber Orchestra.
In 1988, Nadine and her husband Chris, a cellist with the USAF Band, moved to the Washington D.C. area and settled in Northern Virginia. There she developed a full Suzuki violin program—books 1 through 10 levels and beyond—which grew and thrived for 23 years and included a cello program, a chamber music group, a performing group and chamber music camp. Following her husband’s recent retirement from the Air Force, Nadine and Chris moved back to her home state of Ohio where she is currently teaching with the Denison University Suzuki Program, and the Suzuki Music Center of Central Ohio. In addition to her teaching and administrative activities, Nadine served as a Suzuki parent for her own two children and continues to be an active freelance performer playing with various professional organizations including Newark Granville Symphony and Central Ohio Symphony.
Though nurturing the “whole child” has always been the fundamental focus of her program, Nadine has been fortunate to have had many highly successful and award-winning violinists emerge from her studio. While she has been a frequent guest clinician and faculty member at workshops and institutes for many years, she enjoys updating her pedagogical skills through classes and observation regularly.
Dawna Rone- Violin/Viola
Dawna Rone teaches violin and viola for Suzuki Music Columbus and frequently coaches groups at the Chamber Music Connection. She received her B.M. from The Ohio State University where she studied under Michael Davis and Catharine Carroll, and her M.M. from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music where she studied under Catharine Carroll and Masao Kawasaki. Dawna has taken teacher training courses from Ed Sprunger, Linda Stieg, Ronda Cole, Ed Kreitman, and Kimberly Meier-Sims. In addition to teaching many violin and viola students from preschool-high school age, Dawna is an active freelance performer in the central Ohio area. She was formerly the principal violist of the Westerville Symphony from 2009-2017 and currently holds positions in the Newark-Granville and Springfield Symphony Orchestras. Dawna lives in Hilliard, Ohio with her husband, Jeff and their three kids, Elijah, Abby, and Jacob.
Elise Skaggs - Violin/Viola
Elise Skaggs started studying the violin through the Suzuki Method in 1994. She grew up studying violin with Susan Sommerville and Douglas Locke and was a member of the Suzuki Music Columbus Tour Group from 2003-2009. She is profoundly delighted that she has returned to Columbus and is now teaching in the program that first taught her Twinkle. Elise received a Master of Music in performance/pedagogy from the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University. She also earned a Bachelor of Music in viola performance and a Bachelor of Art in strategic communications from Miami University. Principle teachers include Victoria Chiang, Erika Eckert, Mary Harris and Choon-Jin Chang. Elise currently performs as a professional member of New Albany Symphony, where she is also on staff as librarian.
Susan Sommerville - Violin/Viola
Susan has taught Suzuki Violin and Viola since 1980 in the Columbus, Ohio area, and for nearly thrity years with the Suzuki Music Columbus program. She has been a clinician at several Institutes. She studied the Suzuki Method with Rhonda Cole, Pat D'Ecole, Alice Joy Lewis, Martha Shackford and Roger Stieg, including several long term studies. Susan was certified by the National Music Teachers Association, and has participated in a number of chamber groups. She currently directs the St. Andrew's Handbell choir and sings alto in a choir. Susan is known for her high teaching standards, excellently prepared students and her creative approaches to individual children that encourage and develop their talent and character. She has a BS from the University of Michigan, an elementary teaching certificate from Central Michigan University and studied violin with Morris Schulick of the Philadephia Orchestra, and Marya Giesy of the Columbus Symphony.
Roger Stieg - Violin, Teacher Training
Mr. Stieg Studied Suzuki pedagogy for two years in Matsumoto, Japan with Shinichi Suzuki and received the Suzuki Teacher Training Certificate from the Talent Education Institute. Bachelor of Science degree from Indiana University. A string specialist in the Columbus City Schools, he has taught public school strings for many years and has served as clinician at workshops and institutes through-out the United States. Violin faculty for Suzuki Music Columbus. He has four children, and has been married to Linda Stieg, also a Suzuki teacher. His experience with Shinichi Suzuki in Japan, his fine musicianship, his public school experience and his experience as a Suzuki parent four times over, gives him a unique perspective to share with teachers.
Linda Stieg - Violin, Teacher Training
Ms. Stieg Studied Suzuki pedagogy for two years in Matsumoto, Japan with Shinichi Suzuki and received the Suzuki Teacher Training Certificate from the Talent Education Institute. Taught for the Pickerington Public Schools and is a faculty member of Suzuki Music Columbus. Founded, and continues to be actively involved with the Columbus Youth Philharmonic Orchestra. Graduate work in music and education at Michigan State and the University of Dayton, and Master of Music in Kodaly Education from Capital University.
Jim Van Reeth, Violin
Jim holds a Bachelors of Music in violin performance from the Aaron Copeland School of Music at Queens College-CUNY and a Masters in Music Education at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point where he completed long-term Suzuki training. Jim has taught in the Suzuki Programs at Encore Music Studios (Columbus, OH), American Talent Education Center (Stevens Point, WI) and Capital University (Columbus, OH), and currently teaches violin at Suzuki Music Columbus. He has served as a faculty member at the Summer Suzuki Institutes at Capital University, the American Suzuki Institute at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, The Intermountain Suzuki String Institute, and the Blue Ridge Suzuki Camp in Orkney Springs, VA. Jim performs with the Sterling String Quartet and the Newark-Granville Symphony Orchestra. He was co-coordinator of the Suzuki Youth Orchestras of the Americas (SYOA) for the 2010 SAA Biennial Conference.
Susan Walsh - Violin/Viola/Cello
Susan received her Suzuki teacher training in violin at various Suzuki Music Columbus Summer Institutes, studying with teachers Linda Stieg, Kimberly Meier-Sims, and Roger Stieg. She studied Suzuki Cello pedagog at Ithaca College Suzuki Institute with teacher Sally Gross. Susan was on the faculty of the Suzuki Violin School of Columbus-Worthington from 2001 until 2015 when she joined the faculty of Suzuki Music Columbus. She also maintains her own active teaching studio, with students of violin, viola, cello, and piano, as well as performing with various chamber music groups throughout central Ohio.
Susan has played piano as long as she can remember. Her mother taught piano lessons at home, and with students constantly coming for lessons, young Susan thought that all kids played piano! Later she fell in love with the sound of strings, and studied violin, viola, and finally cello. In the 1960's she studied viola with Robert Courte at the University of Michigan, and in the 1970's cello with Ernst Silberstein at the Cleveland Institute of Music. She also participated as a cellist in a pivotal month-long chamber music workshop in 1968 at SUNY-Binghamton with the Guarneri String Quartet.
With a Ph.D. in English from Bowling Green State University, Susan taught English and Comparative Studies at The Ohio State University from 1981-1998. Realizing that these teaching responsibilities left far too little time in her life for music, she made a life change and is now so thankful to be teaching and performing music full time. Music is indeed a universal language that enriches everyone's life.