Evergreen Conservatory is a center for music education in Evergreen, Colorado recognized on state and national levels.
Our world-class faculty and mentors help our students explore music in an energizing and engaging atmosphere. Our programs maximize artistic creativity, literacy, and expression.
Classes are offered in piano, voice, guitar, as well as all orchestral/ band instruments. We curate & nurture Jazz ensembles, Pop/Rock bands, Percussion ensembles, and String ensembles. We also provide early childhood education classes for piano, voice, drums/percussion, Kindermusik program, Suzuki violin, composition, and improvisation.
Our programs are great for college prep, beginners, and all adult levels. Conservatory students enjoy opportunities to perform at schools, theaters, and venues throughout the Denver Metro area.
The Conservatory has a growing relationship with the National Repertory Orchestra, Colorado Suzuki Institute, The Ovation West Performing Arts, the Music Teacher National Association, and Colorado State Music Teaching Association.
Elena Keil is the founder of Evergreen Conservatory of Music. Her pedagogy, knowledge and experience date back from when she started playing piano at 4 years old, toured with Vesna Children’s Choir across Europe, and her training at Gnessin’s Russian Academy of Music. She holds unparalleled standards for music education and performance, revolutionizing the music culture and development in the community of Evergreen and beyond. Students who have studied with Elena have attended top music programs in the US. Elena is driving towards positioning Evergreen Conservatory as a prominent musical education landmark in the country and the world.
Born in Chicago, I began Piano at age two with my Grandfather, who was a Violin Teacher. At age six I started studying traditional Classical Piano with Bea Isaak in Evanston, Illinois. With her help, I developed further as a Musician, playing Recitals, and participating in the National Guild Auditions, and the Syllabus exams. During that time I also sang with Choirs, and was involved in Theater, Film, and Voice. Later, I wrote and performed in Rock Bands for many years, playing in and around the Chicago area until I moved to Evergreen, Colorado. Here, for over twenty years, I have worked as a Classical Piano Teacher, and as an Accompanist for many local Schools and Choirs. I Compose music, and am also a Certified Recording and Sound Engineer.
I have been fortunate to be involved with Music my entire life, and hope to share my experience with others, for their own personal growth, and for enjoyment.
Deborah Berioli, Soprano, CSOM, CBBA, is a critically acclaimed opera singer having performed with leading opera companies and symphonies in the US and abroad. Deborah began her musical education at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey and went on to a professional performing career. She has studied voice with David Jones, International Vocal Pedagogue specializing in the Swedish-Italian School of voice training and Ruth Golden, Soprano and faculty member with the Manhattan School of Music.
Deborah received critical acclaim for her performances of The Countess Almaviva in Mozart's Le Nozze Di Figaro from Opera News Magazine in the US and Opera Magazine in Europe. Her portrayal of Amelia in Verdi's Un Ballo in Maschera was listed among the top ten best classical performances in the San Francisco Bay Area describing her performance as "over the top beautiful". She has performed with the MidSummer Mozart Festival in San Francisco and was invited to perform a rare fragment of a Mozart aria at the San Francisco War Memorial & Performing Arts Center. She has performed solo and symphonic works across the country including the famous venues of Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis and Carnegie Hall, Manhattan. She maintains a private vocal and piano studio and is dedicated to providing opportunities for students, young artists and skilled amateurs to perform within a mentoring environment with teachers and accomplished musicians.
Deborah is the Director of Music for the Unitarian Universalist Church of Boulder and has served as Voice Teacher and Music Director for the Actor's Academy of Performing Arts in Denver and Boulder.
Member of Music Teacher National Association and Colorado State Music Teacher Association.
“This will be our reply to violence: to make music more intensely, more beautifully, more devotedly than ever before.” --Leonard Bernstein
Hailing from Los Angeles, CA, Jenny Thompson is a Zwischenfach (currently mezzo & soprano) vocalist who has been enamored with classical music since she was a little girl. She remembers her first profound musical experience, when a beloved music teacher took her first grade class on a field trip to the Hollywood Bowl to sing onstage. After that, she was inspired for life, forever establishing a great reverence for music educators everywhere and the desire to contribute unifying art to a divided world.
She began her voice journey with Ms. Ania Balon-Kurpiewski, former singer with the LA Phil and music director at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Tujunga, California, where Jenny was first awestruck by sacred music. In 2015, Jenny then went on to study Opera at the Frost School of Music in Miami, Florida under the outstanding tutelage of Dr. Nobleza Pilar and Ms. Jeanette Thompson, both Fulbright Scholars and barrier-breaking artists. There, Jenny also studied under the notable direction of Alan Johnson, Jeffrey Buchman, Dr. Corin Overland, Dr. Coreen Duffy, Kevin Short, Anita Castiglione, Alberto De La Reguera and Dafnis Prieto. In 2017, Jenny performed in multiple concerts and master classes in Salzburg, Austria during the esteemed Salzburg Festival, markedly for world-renowned soprano Helen Donath.
In 2018, she sang for Miami's premier jazz radio station, WDNA, as a member of the Frost Latin Jazz Orchestra, a multiple Downbeat award winner that year. While living in Miami, she performed the role of Fraarte from Handel's Radamisto with Miami Music Festival, under the baton & studio of renowned soprano Sandra Lopez-Neill. During the festival, Jenny performed in master classes for Helden tenor Alan Held and vocal pedagogue, Manny Perez. Ms. Thompson also sang under the baton of Michael Rossi for a performance of Act II from Wagner's Lohengrin at the New World Center in Miami Beach, hosted by the Miami Wagner Institute. Upon discovering a love for teaching that same year, Jenny vowed to be a lifelong learner and music educator for decades to come.
Jenny's next chapter in voice performance and pedagogy serendipitously landed her in the Master's Voice Program at the Lamont School of Music in Denver, Colorado, which she graduated from in March 2022. There, Ms. Thompson zeroed in on her evolving fach (lyric coloratura mezzo/soprano) and staple repertoire in the studio of Catherine Kasch. Jenny has also collaborated with multifaceted pianists Sahar Nouri and Beth Nielsen, notably to perform music by minority composers like Florence Price. Fascinated by the stories of underdog Black American composers like Price, Ms. Thompson has pursued and presented her research on Black American classical composers at various conferences and lecture series, earning her the opportunity to present at the National MLA Meeting in 2021. You may read about "Bias in the Canon: An Exploration into Whitewashing in America's Classical Music and Its Forgotten African-American Past" here:
Ms. Thompson actively performs in the area, most recently joining Opera Colorado as a mezzo soprano at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House (May 2022).
Last year, she sang the role of Zweite Dame from Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with Lamont Opera Theater. In addition to DJing and writing in her "free time," she remains a globally inspired teacher & researcher dedicated to the expansion of musical expression. Inspired by the Colorado music community, Jenny's vision for teaching blends groundbreaking voice science with holistic wellness, which she uses to build confident singers with solid technique, enhanced bodily awareness, artistic expression, freedom of the breath, and most importantly, vocal health. She currently resides in Denver, where she continually strives to bridge her passion of music with her love of service through education, research, and performance. Jenny has been actively teaching various age groups in her private studio throughout the Greater Denver area since moving here in 2019.
When I was four years old, I sang before friends and family at a holiday gathering in our home. I knew then that I wanted to be on stage! Once seeing Julie Andrews portray Maria in the film “The Sound of Music”, that instinct was totally confirmed.
I attended Emporia State University in Kansas. Back then, there was no “Musical Theatre” degree, so I started out in opera. I was fortunate to play the role of Frasquita in “Carmen”, and then my sophomore year that of Marguerite in “Faust”. But somehow, vocalizing in practice rooms just wasn’t for me. I switched over to Theatre and enjoyed numerous roles, including that of Laurey in “Oklahoma!”.
I spent the next decade in Colorado, performing in Aspen, Boulder, Colorado Springs, Greeley and Vail. Once moving to Florida I performed at The Public Theatre of Ft Lauderdale and the Actor’s Playhouse in Miami. All experience in both states was professional in that I was paid! I was a member of Actor’s Equity for 25 years, as well.
I am happy to have returned to beautiful Colorado, and look forward to both my time here at the Conservatory, and investigating local theatre groups.
Born and raised in Michigan, Laura Billups began her musical career in the 4th grade elementary school string program. While attending Michigan State University to obtain a business degree, Laura was active in various orchestras and chamber groups throughout the mid-Michigan area including the Michigan State University Orchestra. After moving to Chicago in 1991, Laura worked in the business world for 10+ years but also continued to play with various orchestral groups including: The Chicago Classical Symphony and Evanston Symphony Orchestra. Laura also played for special events throughout the city. In 1998, Laura was accepted into the Roosevelt University College of Performing Arts Instrumental Music Education Program and graduated with honors in 2001. After graduation, Laura accepted the Director of Orchestras position at the University of Chicago Laboratory School conducting all 4th - 9th grade orchestras. 2016 was the year that brought the Billups family from Chicago to the great state of Colorado. Laura began teaching at Evergreen Middle School in 2017 and currently is the director of the Advanced Chamber Orchestra, 6th grade orchestra and 7th/8th grade sectional rehearsals. Creating a life-long love for music of all kinds is Laura’s true joy and passion.
“One of the great things about being a musician is that you never stop learning.” – Yo Yo Ma
Hannah Robbins began her musical studies at the age of 4 after learning of the cello from a family friend. Growing up in Denver, she participated in many local programs including Denver Talent Education, Colorado Youth Symphony Orchestra, Front Range Youth Symphony, and Denver Young Artists Orchestra that fed her love of music and desire to pursue cello as a career. Hannah attended Denver School of the Arts for several years before deciding to leave home early to attend Interlochen Arts Academy for her junior and senior years of high school so she could focus on developing and preparing for college auditions.
Hannah attended University of Michigan, where she received a Bachelor of Music in cello performance as a student of Richard Aaron. During her time in Ann Arbor, she developed a passion for early music and took up playing viola da gamba under the instruction of Enid Sutherland. She continued on to receive her Masters of Music at Indiana University where she was awarded Associate Instructorship through the IU Early Music Institute. Hannah has been active throughout the country participating in numerous summer festivals and orchestras. She has also participated in numerous international orchestra tours, performing concerts at the Royal Irish Academy of Music, Dublin's St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Lerwick, Whalsay, Korneuburg, Krems, Kindberg, Eger Cathedral, Liszt Academy, Cordoba, La Plata, and Buenos Aires.
The mountains were calling so Hannah returned to Colorado in 2013 and has since worked throughout the Denver area as a freelance musician. She has performed with many local ensembles including the Colorado Symphony, Colorado Chamber Players, and Colorado Bach Ensemble. She enjoys teaching private lessons and is dedicated to providing her students a strong understanding of technique, musicality, and respect for music of all genres.
Andrew Rose has been teaching individuals and coaching ensembles for nearly a decade. Andrew obtained a Bachelor's and a Master's Degree in Music Performance from the Western Michigan University. After he finished his Master's degree in 2014, he moved to Denver to be closer to the mountains and closer to his family. As a virtuoso of Upright and Electric Bass, Andrew maintains an active schedule as an in-demand performer where he continues to explore the further limits of bass solos and band interplay. He is a part of the Colorado Conservatory for the Jazz Arts in Denver where he leads small, youth jazz ensembles. With an in-depth knowledge of music theory and harmony, he teaches students to write their own music while they learn to master their instruments. While he enjoys teaching the fundamentals, he loves sharing the joy of music most of all! Having 20 years of experience to draw, Andrew Rose has the tools to keep you or your loved ones excited to achieve their musical goals.
Clint Dadian is a professional guitarist who specializes in jazz and is fluent in a variety of styles. He holds a BA in jazz performance from Long Island University in Brooklyn, NY. He has studied guitar with Rodney Jones, Peter Bernstein, Randy Johnston, Mark Elf and Chris Rosenberg as well as piano with Bruce Barth and David Berkman. He has served on faculty at Long Island University, Greenwich House Music School and the Village Community School in New York City. In 2009 Mr. Dadian received a Masters Degree in Jazz Composition with an emphasis on Big Band arranging from the Lamont School of Music at the University of Denver. His compositions for big band have been performed in Europe and the U.S. by bands such as the Air Force Academy big band, The Falconaires.Mr. Dadian is comfortable in settings ranging from solo guitar to big band. He has a warm, rich sound and a flowing improvisational style. While in New York City, he led a six-piece ensemble playing original arrangements of jazz standards. Mr. Dadian has performed throughout the United States, Canada, Europe and Japan with artists such as Houston Person, Etta Jones and Bobby Watson. He currently makes his home near Denver, Colorado where he has taught guitar at the Community College of Aurora and directed band and choir at Academy Charter School in Castle Rock. He performs frequently in the many venues throughout Colorado.
Joseph has been playing guitar professionally for many years, in New York, Montana, Missouri and Colorado. For over 30 years he has been performing, recording, arranging, teaching, studying and composing. As a performer, Joseph can be heard on many recordings as a founding member of the Long Island avant-garde duet, Inner Landscapes, and the experimental music band QUIET featuring Cathedral keyboardist, Tom Doncourt. He can also be heard accompanying the grandchildren of Maria Von Trapp on the Von Trapp Children Vol 1, Charlie Russell’s MONTANA!, and Off The Wall, The New Jubes & Virtual Orchestra. He has also composed for television, radio, stage productions, and small films. He composed the music score for the 2006 PAH-FEST film festival feature film winner, "I Am the Longs”. He also scored and performed a theater production of Anton Checkhov’s Three Sisters and a theater production of The Persecution and Assassination of Jean-Paul Marat as Performed by the Inmates of the Charenton Under the Direction of the Marquis De Sade. As a teacher, Joseph taught guitar studio and class at the University of Montana and The University of Central Missouri. He also taught Music Theory, Aural Training, Music Composition, Jazz Band, Music Literature at Adams State University. In Colorado, most recently Joseph performed with the SLV Big Band and led jazz jam sessions in Alamosa and Del Norte for students and local jazz enthusiasts. In Evergreen, Joseph is a familiar performer at local venues. He also hosts jazz jams at the Snowpack Taproom with the Evergreen Jazz Collective. www.facebook.com/guitarist.at.large https://boutiqueguitars.org/
Peter Burkholder began listening to jazz before he could walk, bouncing to the beats of David Sandborn as a one-year-old. It was only a matter of time before he caught the bug. He started playing the saxophone in 2007 taking lessons at the Levine School taking lessons from Navy Commodores unit leader, William C. Mulligan. He continued to study classically into high school and began studying jazz as well under prolific Maryland educator and performer Paul Carr. He met Paul on scholarship to his well-known "Jam Camp” at the Jazz Academy of Music. Peter received the scholarship by winning one of two “Outstanding Soloist Awards” at the 2011 Mid Atlantic Jazz Festival. His senior year Peter played lead alto in the Yorktown H.S. Jazz Band in Arlington, Virginia, and was awarded the “Louis Armstrong Award for outstanding achievement in the field of jazz” by program director Brian Bersh.
The passion Peter developed for jazz in high school extended into his undergraduate studies. At James Madison University, he pursued an undergraduate degree in music, studying under sax professor David Pope. Highlights of his performances as Lead Alto in the JMU jazz ensemble are viewable below. After graduating from JMU, Peter pursued a Master's in music performance at Denver University’s Lamont School of Music, studying under pianist Eric Gunnison, trombonist and director Steve Wiest, and professor of saxophone Art Bouton. He won an outstanding soloist award at the Greeley Jazz Festival for his role as the “Dragon” in Steve Wiest’s composition “Ork Vs. Dragon.” This performance is also viewable on the Lamont School of Music’s YouTube channel. In May 2020 Peter graduated from the Lamont School of Music and a few months later accepted a teaching position at the conservatory. When he is not teaching you can find him leading local jam sessions in downtown Denver as well as performing in local theatre production companies playing various woodwinds in the pit orchestras
Justis Williams began his musical journey at the age of 11. Instantly taking a liking to the trombone he would enter local competitions, play with youth brass quartets, and play at his local church. Justis would further develop his passion for music at the University of North Texas, where he received a Bachelor of Music in trombone performance as a student of Natalie Mannix. While at North Texas he taught private music lessons cultivating young musicians in the surrounding DFW metroplex. He would go on to Study at the University of Denver Lamont School of Music, where he served as a graduate teaching assistant. In 2020 he would receive a Master of Music in trombone performance under the tutelage of Paul Naslund. The following year he would finish his academic journey with a Performance Certificate from the Lamont School of Music as a student of Richard Harris. Justis has performed with the Colorado Symphony, Boulder Philharmonic, Colorado Chamber Orchestra, and many other orchestras. During the summers he spends his time playing with the Municipal wind band and jazz band throughout the Denver metropolitan area. As a frequent performer with Inside the Orchestra, he brings the love of orchestral music to children in communities all across Denver. To further his dedication to spreading the love of music, he has been teaching brass instruments to students in Colorado since 2019.
I was born in Detroit Michigan.
From an early age, music was part of my life. My mother sang in the church choir, my father was an amateur boogie-woogie pianist and my grandfather owned a funeral parlor where he was also an organist.
My musical beginnings were as a trombonist but drums and percussion were my passion. In 6th grade, my mom bought me a snare drum and I started taking private lessons. I played in concert and marching band in school from 7th grade through high school as well as rock bands playing for school dances.
I moved to Colorado in 1973 and played in many groups touring the west playing night clubs through 1977 at which time I moved back to Michigan for a short period and continued playing mostly in rhythm and blues groups.
In 1978 I moved to California and lived there until 2014. While in California I played on hundreds of tv and radio commercials, artist recordings, songwriting demos even walk-up music for amusement park ride California.
I have toured North America and Canada extensively as well as Europe, Japan, Australia, and Tahiti.
I have appeared on The tonight show with Jay Leno several times as well as The Late Show with David Letterman, Saturday Night Live, The Academy of country music awards (ACM), The Grammy awards show The Country music awards (CMA), and others.
Prominent artists I’ve played, toured, and recorded for include Dwight Yoakam, Merle Haggard, Lucinda Williams, Jim Messina, Johnny Rivers, Buck Owens, Jefferson Starship, Roger Miller, Kathy Segal, Katie Webster, Eddie “cleanhead “ Vinson, Chuck e Weiss, Ralph Stanley, Tony Furtado, Harold Land... and others.
I’ve played at festivals and venues such as Bonaroo, Coachella, Stagecoach , Montreaux, Roskilde, Glastonbury, Radio city music hall, Pepsi Center, Red Rocks, the Forum, Madison Square Garden, and many others.
Former students are
Mario Calire...CalArts graduate....former Wallflowers, Ozomatli drummer, and active recording drummer in L.A.
Seth Woods...Los Angeles music Academy graduate and University of Miami graduate....drummer for Paul Anka and active educator
Randall Marsh ....drummer for Mudcrutch and Original drummer for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
Dick Gay....longtime drummer for Clint Black
John Spittle....drummer for Trace Atkins
Tina Curtis ....CalState Long Beach graduate...CalState Northridge masters degree....music educator for Los Angeles unified school district.
Professional equipment endorsements
Remo drumheads and percussion
Innovative Percussion Drumsticks and Mallets
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