Meet our teachers
Anthony Williams has been the director of ECMS for over 5 years. Anthony began his formal study of music at Randolph-Macon College and quickly became active in choral ensembles, guitar studies, music technology, and composition. He later continued his education at George Mason University where he received his Master of Music degree in Composition. During this time he continued to study guitar with Larry Snitlzer, a student of classical guitar Master Andre Segovia. During his graduate studies he began to teach guitar, piano, voice, and composition full time.
During this time he discovered that he enjoyed working with beginner musicians to help instill music fundamentals and spark a passion to start student’s musical journeys at every age. Since 2016 Anthony has been apart of the Williamsburg United Methodist Church staff as Director of Youth and Children’s music. During this time he has continued to further his skills in music education with young people. His achievements and further training is as follows:
Certifications in over 8 MusikGarten curriculums
Published choral works including a Editor’s choice award for children’s choral anthem “Bless You”
Completion of Chorister’s Guild Institute working with nationally recognized children’s conductors, composers, and program leaders
Participation in Early Childhood Music in Motion Association’s international conference 2019
Commissioned and featured composer for churches, school districts, and colleges
Tamara Carver is the Assistant Director of the Early Childhood music school. Not only is she an expert at teaching all of our classes from First Music- Young Musicians 1, but also her background in finance assists her with account management components of the ECMS program. Tamara received her BA in Economics and Business from the University of Pittsburgh and a MBA from Old Dominion University. While raising her daughters in the Hampton Roads area she enrolled them both in ECMS. During her time as parent she fell in love with the program.
With a good eye and ear for talent in her classrooms Mrs. Cindy Freeman former director recognized Tamara’s potential gifts to ECMS. Now Tamara brings with over 15 years of experience her love of learning, dancing, and attention to detail to her classrooms. Not only has she participated in several MusikGarten trainings, ECCMA workshops, and education seminars but she also attended the Graduate Summer Music Institute at the University of Hartford. During this course she furthered her education of Music Learning Theory by Edwin Gordon a Music Education Theorist that much of our curriculum is based. One of Tamara’s main passions is working as an outreach teacher with our Elliot’s Song program. She provides weekly music instructor to at-risk preschool children in the WJCC area.
BABIES, TODDLERS, AND EXPLORERS
Kathy Parisi has been teaching at ECMS for over 15 years. Kathy has been a violinist almost her entire life and continued her studies at Hofstra University in Homestead, New York where she received a Music degree in Music Management. Upon arrival to Williamsburg she has been active in Williamsburg’s music community. Kathy has been a professional violinist at Busch Gardens, groups around town, as well as grown her own flourishing Violin and Viola studio.
While attending music classes with her boys Kathy enjoyed for how ECMS laid a strong foundation for music learning with young families. Since then she has been certified to work with several of our classes and excels at all of our parent and me classes. She has also been an active teacher in our outreach program Elliot’s Song since 2011.
BabIES and Toddlers
Sara Meldrum has been teaching with ECMS since 2019. Sara, like many of our teachers started out as a parent in one of our classrooms. Her musical and vocal abilities are clear to everyone she was around. Sara received a BA in Music History from the University of California, Davis. There she studied voice as well as participated in the choir. She was also apart of a group of parents that started a recital program as a part of an ECMS concert series Magnificent Melodies.
Outside of ECMS Sara also is a children’s librarian for Williamsburg Regional Library system. There she currently helps with children’s programming, story time, and other activities. Sara was also a pivotal part of the ECMS virtual school year 2020-2021 by providing our toddler families with content and zoom sessions.
young musician 2, beginner keyboard
Ginger Barr has been a longtime active member of the Williamsburg United Methodist Church as well as the Williamsburg Music Community. During her undergraduate studies she was a member of the William and Mary College choir. She is currently active with WUMC Sanctuary Choir, Williamsburg Women’s Chorus & Choraliers, and Cantori Choral Ensemble.
Ginger has been employed by ECMS since 2006. For years she participated as a classroom assistant in several of our levels. Through her time of working with our teachers she grew to be extremely well versed in several of our curriculums. Ginger solidified her knowledge through the MusikGarten certification program and works with our Young Musician 2 levels as well as our beginner Keyboard levels. One of her favorite parts of our program is how the keyboard classes bring a holistic approach to playing the music, understanding the theory, and introducing reading music in a fun and attainable format. She also enjoys having 4 grandchildren participate in the program!
young musicians 1 and 2
Andrea Fegley earned her Master of Music in flute performance from the University of North Texas. She was a two time semi-finalist in the National Flute Association Baroque Artist competition and has performed with the Dallas Bach Society and the Orchestra of New Spain. She maintained a private flute studio in the Dallas area before moving to Virginia. In Williamsburg, she has worked with Flute Frenzy and has been an assistant with the Early Childhood Music School since 2016. She received her Virginia teaching certificate in 2016 and teaches elementary music in Neszport News Public Schools.
First Music Target Age: 2-10 Months
While encouraging adult/child bonding through musical play, this class is designed to address the infant’s natural curiosity about music. Listening skills and internal beat are fostered through singing, bouncing, rocking and playing simple instruments like drums, rattles and rhythm sticks. Wiggle and peek-a-boo games encourage the infant’s positive responses.
First Music Target Age: 11-17 Months
While encouraging adult/child bonding through musical play, this class is designed to address the older infant’s need to explore through movement and sound. Listening skills and internal beat are fostered through singing, bouncing, rocking and playing simple instruments like drums, rattles and rhythm sticks.
Musical Beginner Target Age: 18-23 Months
Toddlers are “movers and shakers” who instinctively love music! There’s a developmental reason for this natural musicality. Toddlers have entered what Maria Montessori called a “critical window” for nurturing musical intelligence. With the help of an adult companion, the child’s natural musical instincts are nurtured through singing, dancing, rhythm and tonal echoes, circle games and a variety of percussion instruments.
Musical Beginner Target Age: 24-35 Months
Older toddlers still need plenty of movement, but are now able to sit and focus for a minute or two, especially when instruments, scarves, finger-play and singing absorb their attention. With the help of an adult companion, the child explores drums, resonator bars, finger cymbals, rattles and rhythm sticks. Natural musical instincts are also nurtured through singing, dancing, echoing rhythm and tonal patterns and circle games. The aural approach gives toddlers a language for music that is assimilated in the same way as s/he learns his/her mother tongue.
Musical Explorer with Adult Target Age: 3 Years
While recognizing the child’s continued need for security, this class fosters growing independence and a love of nature through songs, instruments, stories, imaginative play and creative movement to address the development of listening, language skills and music literacy.
Musical Explorer without Adult Target Age: 3 Years
This class recognizes the child’s readiness for independence and fosters his/her natural interest in animals and nature through songs, instruments, stories, imaginative play and creative movement to address the child’s development of listening, language skills and music literacy.
Young Musician 1 Target Age: 4-5 Years
With the Young Musicians 1 level, children embark on a two-year journey of structured, sequential music education. Thematic units, featuring natural habitats like Woodlands, Marsh and Meadow include songs, stories, listening, movement, introduction to music notation and playing instruments (including xylophones and metallophones and a wide variety of other percussion instruments). Excitement for learning and preparation for academic success are fostered.
Young Musician 2 Target Age: 5-6 Years
This class continues the sequential approach to music education, including reading and writing music. Through songs, stories, listening, movement and playing instruments, children explore a variety of cultures like British Isles, American Indians, African Americans and Germany. Music literacy is promoted both aurally and visually, leading toward a successful experience in Keyboard.
Keyboard Youth 1 Target Age: 6-7 Years
Keyboard 1 begins to lay a solid foundation for successful private lessons. Music literacy is approached both aurally and visually. Instruction includes singing, dancing, drumming, playing card games and basic keyboard skills. Participants must have a keyboard or piano for home practice, and parents must exhibit a high level of commitment. The Young Musician 2 level is recommended as a prerequisite.
Keyboard Youth 2 Target Age: 7-8 Years
Keyboard 2 continues the carefully constructed, balanced curriculum that was introduced in Keyboard 1. As students gain facility and understanding, they enjoy the process and are less likely to quit. Participants must have a keyboard or piano at home.
Keyboard Youth 3 Target Age: 8-9 Years
Keyboard 3 continues the careful progression of music literacy, while students enjoy the group setting. Levels 1 and 2 are prerequisites. Music reading and independence of hands are emphasized, but ear-training continues. Level 3 students are comfortable transposing to many major and minor tonalities. Goals are accomplished through singing, dancing, drumming, card games and playing the keyboard. Participants must have a keyboard or piano at home.
Keyboard Youth 4 Target Age: 9-10 Years
Keyboard 4 lays a solid foundation for successful private lessons. Levels 1 – 3 are required for placement in Level 4. While actual time at the instrument is maximized, students continue to sing, dance and drum. Composition and improvisation are natural outcomes of the previous year’s sequential building blocks. Participants must have a keyboard or piano at home.
Youth Guitar 1 Target Age: 7+
Guitar 1 is an exciting new class at ECMS that will approach beginner guitar education with an emphasis on ensemble playing, music literacy, as well as music and motion concepts. The curriculum is written and developed by Anthony Williams, Director of ECMS. Each guitar student will need their own acoustic guitar to bring to class. Written and listening curriculum will be provided as part of tuition.
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