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Agnes McCarthy

NAA Director, Voice instructor, Choir Director

Agnes McCarthy leads a busy life as Director of Sault Ste. Marie’s Northern Arts Academy, providing comprehensive multidisciplinary training for singers with diverse musical interests.  She also currently serves as a music specialist with the Algoma District School Board and is an Adjunct Professor of Voice and Voice Coordinator at Algoma University where she teaches private voice as well as Musical Theatre and Elementary Music Methods courses.

 

Agnes began her undergraduate studies in Voice with Carolyn Hart at Memorial University of Newfoundland.  After completing her B. Mus. / B. Mus. Ed. degrees, she moved to Montréal to pursue graduate studies in Early Music Performance at McGill University.  Under the tutelage of Canadian countertenor, Allan Fast, she completed her Master's Performance degree.  That same year, Agnes relocated to Sault Ste. Marie as part of the Artist in Residence Program at Algoma University and has since served in the capacities of performer, voice instructor, choral conductor and coordinator of the vocal division of the Sault Ste. Marie Music Festival.  Her choirs and private students have distinguished themselves by winning numerous national awards, and many have gone on to professional careers.

 

Agnes has spent her professional career in Sault Ste. Marie deeply involved in the musical life of the community as a teacher and performer.  She has collaborated with The Sault Symphony, The Algoma Chamber Players, The Chamber Singers of Algoma, The Algoma Festival Choir and with The Musical Comedy Guild of Sault Ste. Marie as Vocal Director for their productions of Les Misérables and Jesus Christ Superstar.  She is also active as a Choral and Voice Festival adjudicator. 

 


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Paul Dingle

NAA Director, Piano instructor, Theory instructor, Accompanist/Coach

Paul Dingle brings over 30 years of professional experience to the NAA as a performer, collaborative pianist, conductor, clinician, adjudicator and teacher. Paul originally relocated to the Sault to work at Algoma University. As an Adjunct Professor he teaches music history, theory, popular culture, orchestral and choral conducting, audio arts, piano performance, and is Director of The AlgomaU Choir. Paul is also Organist & Choirmaster at Central United Church, where he runs a choral and handbell program.

He began undergraduate studies in harpsichord and early music in England under Valda Aveling and Edgar Hunt at Trinity College London. Paul completed a Bachelor of Music degree in musicology at Memorial University of Newfoundland, and a Master's Performance degree in piano at Brandon University. Upon his return to his native Newfoundland he founded and was Artistic Director and Conductor of the Terra Nova Chamber Players, a professional orchestra specializing in Baroque music. Paul was also a composer and performer in the experimental multimedia group Fusion, an ensemble dedicated to high-technology arts productions involving analog, digital and hybrid synthesis, as well as a contributor to the International Sound Symposium, a biannual festival of new music, art, and dance. Paul’s first recording for CBC FM radio broadcast as a 16 year old pianist was his introduction to the world of audio and recording technology, an experience that has become a lifelong passion. Later studies in recording technology, acoustics and psychoacoustics led to a research interest in the historical interface between music and technology.

Paul has spent his professional career in Sault Ste. Marie collaborating in the musical life of the community as a teacher, conductor and performer. He has partnered with The Algoma Conservatory of Music, The Sault Symphony, The Algoma Chamber Players, The Chamber Singers of Algoma, The Algoma Festival Choir, Algoma Fall Festival, The Northland Chorus and The Steeltown Silver Band.  His long association with musical theatre includes serving as Musical Director for The Musical Comedy Guild of Sault Ste. Marie’s productions of She Loves Me, Les Miserables, Jesus Christ Superstar, Mary Poppins and A Christmas Carol.

 


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Skye Smith

Movement/Acting instructor

Skye Smith is delighted to share her expertise and passion in performance and movement with Northern Arts Academy.

Skye has been working in community theatre for more than 10 years. She has starred in many memorable productions such as White Christmas with the Sault Symphony Orchestra, The Producers with the Musical Comedy Guild, and God of Carnage with In Your Eyes Projects.  Skye has also directed and choreographed many productions, and has mentored in the popular Soo Sings for Kids for the last four years.  She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Music at Algoma University studying with Agnes McCarthy and also studied dance at Sherry Walsh Academy of Dance Arts obtaining a teaching certificate in Jazz, Ballet, and Stage/Tap.  She taught primary and recreational Jazz, Tap and Ballet at Sherry Walsh for five years before returning to school to study Public Relations and Event Management at Sault College.  She studied at Vancouver Film School at a weeklong intensive Acting workshop, and has worked on many local film sets.  You may have seen her in the locally filmed movie, The Story of Luke or in Northern Know How videos for Northern Credit Union as a "Northern Financial Survival Guide".

 

 

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Alexandria Givens

Voice Instructor/Choir Director

Hailing from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Alexandria Givens, B.Mus., M.Mus., B.Ed., is a classically trained vocalist and educator. Alexandria is the recipient of many scholarships and awards such as the Senior Scholarship Winner in the NATS 2016 vocal competition, Gaston Héton Musical Excellence Scholarship, and the Gold Recipient for the Kiwanis Sheild Competition in 2009. 

Alexandria has played many roles on and off the stage; she has sung roles such as the Queen of the Night in Mozart's Die Zaubeflöte, Rosalinde in Johann Strauss' Die Fledermaus, Laurette in Bizet's Le Docteur Miracle, Fiordiligi in Mozart's Così fan Tutte, and has sung many recitals around the Ottawa-Gatineau region and Northern Ontario. 

She received her Masters of Music at the University of Ottawa under Christiane Riel, as well as her Bachelor of Education in 2018. Alexandria has worked in both secondary and elementary schools with the Ottawa-Carleton District School board, as well as worked as the special events coordinator for Music and Beyond, where she worked towards making music education accessible to everyone in the Ottawa-Gatineau region. 

As the Artistic Director at the National Capital Suzuki School of Music, Alexandria spent her time creating opportunities for all students, parents, and teachers to experience the joy and creativity in music education and performance. 

In Gatineau, Québec Alexandria works as a voice and musical awakening teacher with l'École de Musique de l'Outaouais Inc., is the choral director at Lycée Claudel, and runs her own voice studio. Always seeking new opportunities, Alexandria looks forward to building her studio with the Northern Arts Academy in a rich musical community!

 


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Jean Philip Savard

Guitar/Group Ukelele Instructor

Originally from Sainte-Anne-des-Monts, Québec, Jean-Philip Savard began his studies in guitar at a young age, for which he quickly developed a passion. He began studying at the conservatory of music in Rimouski,QC with Erick Labbé in 2008, where he developed both his technical and pedagogical talents. During his time at the Conservatory he took part in masterclasses and workshops with guitarists such as David Jacques, Petrit Ceku, Isabelle Héroux, Pavel Steidl, Aniello Desiderio, Roland Dyens and Sergio and Odair Assad.

Jean-Philip has won several awards for both his solo and ensemble playing. In April 2011, he won a gold medal at the Festival-Concours of Music from Rivière-du-Loup, QC along with 3 more for his chamber guitar group. In 2016, He graduated from the University of Ottawa with his Master’s Degree in Classical Guitar under the guidance of Patrick Roux.

Jean-Philip actively teaches guitar, theory, solfège and ukulele in the Ottawa-Gatineau region, and is excited to start as a part of Sault Ste. Marie’s vibrant community!