Whether you are 3 years old or 75 years old, new to music, an experienced musician, desire a fun extracurricular activity or professional career Roberson School of Music is the choice for you. Deciding on the appropriate school and teacher will effect your enjoyment and success in music.
What makes RSM’s teachers so unique?
RSM instructors are professionally educated. Our instructors consists of experienced musicians with excellent credentials. They come from diverse, educational and performance backgrounds from all over the world. Each holds advanced music degrees, certifications and/or performance credentials, which enables them to uniquely work with students of all ages, levels and backgrounds. Additionally, all of our instructors undergo extensive background checks to ensure the safety of our students.
Dr. Monica Tripp-Roberson, Director
Monica Tripp-Roberson, D.M.A, is a recognized performer, composer and music educator. Before receiving her Doctorate of Music in Composition/Theory and Piano Performance from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Dr. Roberson also studied at Peabody Conservatory of Music where she received her Master’s of Music and the University of North Florida where she received her Bachelor’s of Education in Music.
As a pianist, she has performed throughout the United States to rave reviews. She has been featured on public television in Jacksonville, FL. Her piano playing has been described as “passionate and energetic.” She has competed in various piano competitions and received awards such as third place winner of the DeBose National Piano Competition.
As a composer, Dr. Roberson has composed various pieces ranging from solo to symphonic works. Her music has appeared in master classes with world-renowned vocalist, Dawn Upshaw. She has won several composition competitions, some of which include winner of the Margaret Blackburn Composition Competition. She was also awarded the Eubie Blake Scholar Award for outstanding musician and composer. During her studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, she was awarded a grant from the Women’s Studies program in order to compose her chamber opera piece titled “A Room of One’s Own” based on the book by Virginia Woolf. She currently accepts commissions and participates in collaborations with artists. With every note she writes, she strives to touch the souls of listeners through rich, colorful, and energetic sounds.
As a teacher, Dr. Roberson has received positive ratings from her students. She teaches piano, strings, woodwind, brass and percussion. Her students have won various competitions and scholarships such as first place in the ACT-SO competition for vocal performance and second place in the ACT-SO competition for violin performance. She has recently taught at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Spelman College, Howard University, the University of Maryland at Baltimore County and Anne Arundel Community College. She has also assisted with the growth and development of private piano programs at the Nathan Carter School of Music, Maryland Conservatory of Music and Champaign School of Music. Dr. Roberson is a recipient of the Guild Teachers’ National Honor Roll Award from the American College of Musicians for preparing top students for piano adjudication and international composition contests. Dr. Roberson is currently a part-time professor at Howard Community College.
Dr. Roberson is also active in church music ministry. She has served as musician and assistant director at the Cross Creek Presbyterian Church and Mt. Nebo Baptist Church in Jacksonville, FL, Warner Baptist Church in Falls Church, VA, and Friendship Lutheran Church in Savoy, IL. She has also served as the Director of Music at the Oakland Baptist Church in Alexandria, VA.
Additionally, Dr. Roberson is a writer and publisher. She has written several articles for Salem Press and EBSCO Publishing’s multi-volume of biographical and analytical publication of Musicians and Composers of the 20th Century as well as The Forties in America. She has also written several articles in their upcoming multi-volume of The Twenties in America, The Thirties in America, and Great Lives from History: African Americans. She is currently engaged in research in reference to popular ethnic music, women in music, spectral music, and theory and analysis of 20th century music. Dr. Roberson is also the publisher of Roberson Music Publishing Company where several of her works have been published. To learn more about Dr. Roberson, visit her website.
Dr. Summer Xia
Dr. Summer Xue Xia graduated from University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music with a degree of Doctor of Musical Arts.
As a professional, Dr. Xia has had various solo and chamber performances. She has participated in numerous master classes, festivals and recitals. She was previously selected as a performer to represent the University of Cincinnati in the “National Association of Schools of Music.” She was awarded second prize winner for piano solo and sixth prize winner for piano duo at the Third Hong Kong Chinese Piano Works Competition. She also received second prize at Hong Kong Beethoven Piano Competition. Dr. Xia was a scholarship recipient for the John L. Magro Foundation in Cincinnati.
Besides solo experiences, Dr. Xia has abundant collaborative and accompanying skills. During her graduate assistantship in the doctoral program, she accompanied for more than 40 recitals and concerts with instrumentalists and vocalists, including distinguished musicians, professors, and guest artists from renowned symphony and universities. She has performed in recitals with horn players from Chicago Symphony Orchestra, trumpeters from Canadian Brass, tuba professor from Arizona State University, horn professors from Peabody Conservatory and University of Illinois. Dr. Xia has played in master classes with world-renowned artists such as the Swedish clarinetist Martin Frost, American singer Deborah Voigt and British Lieder Graham Johnson. In addition, Dr. Xia performs with composer friends. She performed composer Xian Wang’s piano work titled “the Sound from My Memory” which was featured in the Midwest Composers Symposium at the University of Michigan.
Born in China, mainland, Dr. Xia began studying the piano at the age of 5. Before coming to the United States, she obtained a bachelor's degree in piano performance at Shanghai Conservatory of Music.
Dr. Xia gained teaching experience during her college years. She taught students at various age groups. The students she taught were at different level; early beginners, intermediate and advanced beginners. She has helped many children pass piano grade exams and helped adults to learn the music they enjoyed. Dr. Xia hopes to share the joy of piano with new students and friends in the future.
Ms. Junghee SonPianist, Ms. Junghee Son has a second bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in Music Therapy from Colorado State University and has a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from South Korea. She has performed as a solo pianist and duo pianist on recital programs in South Korea and the United States. In addition, she has competed in many competitions at an early age, and was awarded first place and third place winner in competitions in South Korea. Ms. Son has been teaching private and group piano lessons to students as young as age three to adults for many years. She finds it important to get to know student’s musical interest in order to incorporate their musical desire into the curriculum. At the same time, she also feels that it is important for students to play with correct technique and good musicianship. Her students participate in local and state competitions and have received various awards and honors. Ms. Son shares her music through volunteering in catholic churches as well as singing and accompanying in the choir. She loves to ignite others with her knowledge, skills and compassion for music in order to embody their full potential as musicians. Ms. Son is currently pursuing her Doctorate in music at the Catholic University.
Ms. Emilie FloresViolinist and Pianist, Ms. Emilie Rose Flores was born in Takoma Park, Maryland and began her violin studies at the age of seven under the tutelage of the legendary master, Korean teacher and performer Mr. Ang. Ms. Flores was selected as the concert mistress to perform chamber music and solo concerto performances at the College Park Youth Orchestra. While finishing high school, Ms. Flores was accepted into the New England Youth Ensemble (NEYE) of Washington Adventist University as the first violinist. As an avid pianist and violinist, Ms. Flores has toured with NEYE throughout the world performing a myriad of concerts from New York to Australia. Though her performances overseas and throughout the United States have included recordings, solos with orchestras and chamber music concerts. Her recital programs invariably include shorter works, of which she is so fond, as well as the larger masterpieces. Ms. Flores is a Carnegie Scholar and has performed with several recording artists such Pentatonix’s MR Kevin Oulusola, Beatriz Taylor, and others. Ms. Flores is pursuing a Bachelor Degree in Music Education and Performance from Washington Adventist University, is an active piano and violin teacher and in addition to teaching, Ms. Flores enjoys performing as a free-lance musician in the Washington DC Metropolitan Area.
Dr. Ji Eun KimSoprano Ji Eun Kim was born and grew up in Seoul, South Korea. She earned her Bachelors Degree in Voice from Yonsei University in Korea. In the United States she received her Masters Degree in Voice from the Peabody Conservatory studying with Prof. Phyllis Bryn-Julson, and an Artist Diploma in Voice and Opera from the Cleveland Institute of Music studying with Dr. Mary Schiller. Recently, she received her Doctor of Musical Arts in Voice and Opera from Boston University studying with Penelope Bitzas. Now, she has relocated to Gaithersburg in Maryland and is teaching, conducting and singing for the choir at Korean Presbyterian Church of Baltimore. Dr. Kim has performed numerous roles in opera productions of the Boston University Opera Institute including Violetta (La traviata, act 3), Lidoine (Dialogues of the Carmelites), Miss Wingrave (Owen Wingrave), Vitellia (La clemenza di Tito), Eliza (Dark sisters), and Donna Anna (Don Giovanni). Also, she performed Komponist in Ariadne auf Naxos and Beatrice in Beatrice et Benedict while at Cleveland, and Countess in Le nozze di Figaro and First Lady in Magic Flute while completing her Masters Degree. For concert work she performed the whole work of Handel’s Messiah and Haydn’s The Creation in the Yonsei Concert Choir and was the soprano soloist of Handel’s Dixit Dominus, HWV 232 with Neponset Choral Society. Recently, she made her debut at Boston Symphony Hall as a soprano soloist of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony conducted by Ken-David Masur. In the summer of 2015, she was a featured artist at Opera Theater of Pittsburgh and performed the role of the Countess in Le nozze di Figaro. Dr. Kim was a first prizewinner in both the local Metrowest Opera Competition and the Piccola Opera Competition in New Hampshire; 4th prize winner of the Bel Canto Competition and received the encouragement award from the NEMPAC competition in Boston. Dr. Kim has received several accolades for her opera performances. Among them includes the fall 2012 performance of Violetta in the third act of La traviata at the Fringe Festival with the Boston University Opera Institute. “Kim’s initially delicate singing accurately depicted Violetta’s physical and mental frailty, but she revealed a clean, well-tempered sound in her passionate duet with Alfredo.” “Ji Eun Kim used her gleaming soprano to penetrating effect as Composer” in Ariadne auf Naxos, and “Ji Eun Kim brought warm charisma to the opera’s subversive protagonist, Eliza, and shaped a strong, resolute persona with minimal resources” in Nico Muhly’s Dark Sisters.
Mr. Keith KarasikMr. Keith Karasik teaches double bass and strings. His biography will be posted soon.
Mr. Jonah Kappraff
Jonah Kappraff is a trumpet performer and teacher new to the Baltimore area. Having trained at the Oberlin Conservatory (B.M. performance/education) and Boston University (M.M. performance) he spent a decade freelancing in Boston before relocating to central Pennsylvania in 2015. In Boston, Jonah was a regular member of the Lexington Symphony, the Marsh Chapel Collegium Musicum, and the avant-garde Boston Modern Brass Quintet, and performed frequently with the Boston Ballet, the Boston Pops, the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, and Odyssey Opera. He also maintained a robust teaching studio, mentoring students who frequently competed in state and national competitions.
In Pennsylvania, Jonah performed with the Williamsport Symphony, York Symphony, Pennsylvania Chamber Orchestra, and the Penn’s Woods Music Festival. Additionally, he was featured as a guest soloist with the Penn Central Wind Band in 2017 and in performances of the J.S. Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto no. 2 with the Allegretto Chamber Orchestra of Lancaster and the Nantucket Baroque Festival. Jonah has played principal trumpet with the Boston-based Ambient Orchestra (dir. Evan Ziporyn) since 2016, a group with whom he has toured nationally and internationally.
As a recitalist and clinician, Jonah has presented solo recitals and masterclasses at Keene State College, MIT, Harvard University, Bucknell University, and Lycoming College. His primary teachers have been Terry Everson, Steve Emery, and Roy Poper.
Mr. Felipe Garibaldi
"Born in São Paulo, Brazil, classical guitarist Mr. Felipe Garibaldi is an active performer, music researcher, and educator. In 2012, Mr. Garibaldi received the Classical Music Interpreter Award at the 20th Programa Nascente, from the University of São Paulo, Brazil. In 2018, he was awarded with both a grant and a Graduate Assistantship position from the Johns Hopkins University for his Doctoral studies in Classical Guitar Performance at the Peabody Institute, in the studio of reputed guitarist and pedagogue Julian Gray.
Mr. Garibaldi has made several premiere recordings of guitar works by Brazilian composers such as Carlos Alberto Pinto Fonseca and Nelson Macedo, for the Cultura FM de São Paulo Radio, commissioned and curated by Fábio Zanon. He has made the U.S. premiere performance of the solo guitar works of Brazilian composer Claudio Santoro (1919-1989). Mr. Garibaldi also made Brazilian premiere performances of chamber music by Cuban composer Leo Brouwer. He has also made several recordings and arrangements on Christian music for Sony Music.
Mr. Garibaldi earned both his Bachelor in Classical Guitar Performance and Master of Music degrees from University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, under renowned Brazilian guitarist Edelton Gloeden. Mr. Garibaldi has also participated in masterclasses with internationally renowned musicians such as Leo Brouwer, David Russell, Manuel Barrueco, Eliot Fisk, Edelton Gloeden, Fábio Zanon, Jason Vieaux, Bruce Holzman, and others.
Mr. Garibaldi is an active music educator, having hold multiple teaching and administrative positions at the Adventist University of São Paulo (both UNASP-SP and UNASP-EC), currently teaching at Roberson School of Music as well as serving as Teaching Assistant at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University.
As a teacher, Mr. Garibaldi endeavours to engage students on a journey into a world of artistic beauty, tradition, and creative possibilities.”
Mr. Bentley Corbett-Wilson
Mr. Bentley Corbett-Wilson was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada. During his time in Nevada, Bentley played trumpet with the Las Vegas Youth Philharmonic Orchestra, which toured China in 2011. In 2012, he made his Carnegie Hall debut after being selected to perform with the Honors Performance Series Orchestra. Upon graduating high school, he moved to Maryland to attend UMBC as a Music Education student.
During his tenure at UMBC, Bentley found himself not only developing his artistry as a musician and music educator, but his capabilities as a leader. Bentley played trumpet with the UMBC Symphony Orchestra and Wind Ensemble, and had the opportunity to perform alongside a number of highly recognized musicians and chamber groups such as: the Canadian Brass, the American Brass Quintet, Brad Ellis, Oystein Baadsvik, Joe Burgstaller, Hiram Diaz and other members of “The President’s Own” U.S. Marine Band. Bentley was also a part of the recording ensemble for the upcoming album being released by the UMBC Wind Ensemble, which featured newly premiered pieces such as “Chiaroscuro II” by Anna Rubin and “McGuffy’s Reeder” by Brad Ellis. Bentley was also notably the President of the Student Government Association.
Bentley also performed staple repertoire of brass chamber music with the UMBC Brass Quintet for multiple years, and spent some time spent with the UMBC Pep Band and Jazz Ensemble as well. As a music educator, Bentley had the privilege of working with talented students in the Baltimore area through the El Sistema driven Baltimore Symphony Orchestra's OrchKids Program, as well as with various other schools in the state. Through his teachings, he recognized the power that music has to not only make someone a great musician, but its potential to create empathetic leaders who bring about positive change in their communities.
After graduating, Bentley spent two years traveling across the country as a Leadership Consultant, advising college students on effective leadership practices and organizational development. Bentley then returned to UMBC receive a Master of Arts in Teaching. During these years, he had the incredible opportunity to perform at Carnegie Hall once again through the Honors Performance Series, and later in Schladming, Austria, with the World Adult Wind Orchestra Project. Bentley is now a band teacher with Howard County Public Schools, where he teaches instruction for all wind instruments.
Ms. Hee Jin Chang
Soprano, Ms. Hee Jin Chang is an active performer in Maryland. Ms. Chang completed her Bachelor and Master's degree in Seoul National University. She also received a certificate of DMA in Voice at Seoul National University.
Ms. Chang has performed major and minor roles such as Suor Angelica, Tosca, Gilda, Norina, Gretel, Annina and Giovanna at CUA, Seoul Metropolitan Opera. She was also cast in Giulia from Rossini's Opera 'La Scala di Seta' for Peabody's Opera. She was recently accepted to the Annapolis Young Artist program. Ms. Chang has performed several recitals in Vancouver and Korea. She is currently enrolled in the GPD program at the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University.
Ms. Chang has taught voice and intermediate piano students for over 10 years. As an instructor, her goal is to make the students feel confident and joyful with singing and playing piano. Ms. Chang believes students can grow musically with proper technique and when they enjoy their music.
Mr. Colin Webb
Violist Colin Webb enjoys a diverse career as a soloist, chamber musician, orchestral musician, and pedagogue. Active in the DC/Baltimore area, Mr. Webb performs regularly with several orchestras, including the Washington Chamber Orchestra, York Symphony Orchestra, Richmond Symphony, and the Peacherine Ragtime Orchestra. He also performs widely throughout the region as founding member of the Webb Duo, and with the Two Rivers String Quartet and Kennedy String Quartet. A graduate of Eastman School of Music and Boston University School of Music, Mr. Webb received further training at the Amadeus Academy in England and the Internationale Stichting Masterclass Apeldoorn in The Netherlands.
As a teacher, he recognizes that each of his students follows their own path toward their musical development, and is highly invested in guiding them every step of the way with care and expertise. To that end, Mr. Webb develops an individualized curriculum for each of his students catered to their own abilities and personalities, ensuring the most effective learning possible.
Ms. Ellie Kim
Ms. Ellie Kim was recognized with "great critical acclaim" by Opera News online for the role of Rita in Donizetti’s Rita with the Martina Arroyo Foundation. Ms. Ellie Kim is a Washington, DC -based Soprano who is originally from Seoul, Korea.
Ms. Ellie Kim has been a featured soloist in various concerts including Liebster Jesu, Alles nur nach Gottes Willen in Baltimore, Wir danken dir, Gott, wir danken dir, and Britten’s A Ceremony of Carol with the Washington Bach Consort. She also performed the soprano solo in Mozart’s Requiem, John Rutter’s Gloria and Handel’s Messiah in the DC area.
She made her debut in operatic roles performing Lucy in Gian Carlo Menotti’s The Telephone at the National Theater of Korea.
Her operatic highlights include the role of Pamina in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Rita in Donizetti’s Rita, Barbarina in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, Sophie in Massenet’s Werther, and Liu in Puccini’s Turandot.
As a teacher, Ms. Ellie Kim prioritizes getting to know each of her students individually by finding out what kind of music they enjoy listening or wish to play in order to integrate this interest into the curriculum. It is her goal to help each student attain a balance of proper technique and a joy for music so that he/she will learn how to express and reach the hearts of their audience. She hopes to provide an encouraging and inspiring environment that will nurture a love and appreciation for music. Ms. Kim teaches voice and piano.
Ellie received her Master of Music degree from Manhattan School of Music in New York and her Bachelor of Music in Korea.