A native Manhattanite, Eric Valinsky has, for more years than he would like to admit, maintained dual careers in computer systems architecture and music. He was educated at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and the University of Illinois, finally achieving his DMA in music composition from Columbia University. He studied composition with Walter Aschaffenburg, Salvatore Martirano, Jack Beeson, and Darius Milhaud; piano with Sara Crawford Drogheo and Emil Danenberg; and conducting with Harold Farberman. While living in Los Angeles, he became music director and composer-in-residence for The Storie-Crawford Dance Theatre Ensemble. Returning to New York, he served in a similar capacity for Danny Buraczeski's Jazzdance, Uris Bahr and Dancers, and The New American Ballet Ensemble as well as composer-in-residence for The Rachel Harms Dance Company, Opera Uptown, and the Dance Department at City College of New York. He is currently Music Director for the American Dance & Music Performance Group and moonlights as founder and partner of Inlineos LLC, a strategic Internet consulting company.
Born in Montreal, Bill Berry earned his B.Sc. in Geology and Chemistry from McGill University. As Area Administrator with the Canadian Federal Government, he lived with the Inuit people, learning their language and assisting them in adopting institutions, technologies, and business practices of our society while retaining their intellectual culture. After obtaining his MBA from the University of Western Ontario he was Executive Vice President for the Canadian Textiles Institute, Manager of Government Affairs for Ultramar Canada, and Executive Director of the Crop Protection Institute of Canada. Since retirement Bill has sold financial products, taught French, served on boards of several community organizations, and sings in the Santa Barbara Master Chorale.
Christopher Davis, pianist, has been concerto soloist with several orchestras including the Northwest Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, and has studied with renowned teachers and scholars in Germany, Austria, and Portugal. He earned his BA Degree from UC San Diego, his MM Degree from the University of Arkansas, and his DMA Degree from UCSB. In addition to serving as the Music Academy of the West’s House Manager (2009-2016), Dr. Davis has been on the staff of the Ojai Music Festival and Westmont College (2014-2016), and has worked for Camerata Pacifica, collaborating independently with many of their musicians.
Monica Dunne, CPA-CMA has been your Music Club Treasurer since June 2013. Monica was born and raised in Lancashire UK. She emigrated to Montreal, Canada in 1972, where she worked as a secretary, and later as a high school teacher after obtaining a Certificate of Education from McGill University. She obtained a B.Com.in accounting from Concordia University in 1985 and later became a CPA-Certified Management Accountant. In Canada she worked in financial management positions for the Certified Management Accountants of Ontario and the Manufacturers Research Corporation of Ontario before moving to Santa Barbara in 1996 where she was employed at UCSB for 18 years in financial positions in the Bren School and Business and Financial Services. She retired in 2014 as Assistant Manager of Extramural Funds Accounting. Along the way she acquired a love of classical music, which is a major part of her enjoyment of Santa Barbara’s rich musical culture.
Ann Dwelley, soprano, received a BA in Economics from Wellesley College, an MPA in Public Administration from Harvard University, studied voice with Greta Barot Milius and Martial Singher, and coached with Elizabeth Mosher. She has sung in choruses with major orchestras, including the Boston and London Symphonies, has been soloist with numerous choruses in the greater Boston area and in Santa Barbara (Choral Society, Master Chorale, Oratorio Chorale, Santa Ynez Chorus, and various churches), and performs at Tanglewood each summer. Currently, she is an officer of the Santa Barbara Music Club, UCSB Music Affiliates, Quire of Voices, and the Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara.
Adriane Hill is a flutist based in Santa Barbara, CA, where she works as the Marketing and Communications Manager for the UC Santa Barbara Department of Music. She studied performance at UC Santa Barbara (M.M.) with Jill Felber and the University of Central Florida (B.M.) with Dr. Nora Lee Garcia. As a member of the new music group, the Now Hear Ensemble, she has toured throughout much of California, including appearances at the Center for New Music in San Francisco and the Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater (REDCAT) in Los Angeles. Adriane also serves as the Marketing and Communications Manager for the Los Angeles-based composer-directed collective, Synchromy. Learn more at www.adrianehill.com.
Composer/pianist Leslie A. Hogan received her principal training at the University of Kansas and the University of Michigan. Her music often manifests her longtime fascination with other art forms and with the potential of music to reflect or respond to visual stimuli from the natural world. As a pianist, she has performed with UC Santa Barbara’s Ensemble for Contemporary Music and was a co-founder and frequent performer for the Current Sounds concert series in Santa Barbara. She was on the board of the Chamber Music Society of Santa Barbara for over a decade. She has received awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters (Charles Ives Fellowship, 2002; Charles Ives Scholarship, 1993), the Rapido Composition Contest, the American Music Center, ASCAP, and the Chicago Civic Orchestra, among others. Dr. Hogan has taught composition in the College of Creative Studies at the University of California-Santa Barbara since 1995.
Betty Oberacker, pianist, is internationally acclaimed for her interpretations of both traditional and contemporary solo and chamber music repertoire, and has toured throughout Europe, Israel, Asia, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico and the U.S., including performances at Carnegie Hall, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Berlin Philharmonic Hall and Vienna Musikverein. She has been Artist-in-Residence at 55 universities, conservatories and music festivals worldwide, and many important composers have dedicated their compositions to her. Her musical gifts were evidenced at three, when she began to play the piano and compose entirely by ear. Piano lessons started at age seven, and at nine she was accepted on scholarship as the only child student of the noted pianist Beryl Rubinstein. Her BM/MM Degrees are from the Cleveland Institute of Music, and her DMA Degree is from Ohio State University, where she was concomitantly a member of the piano faculty. Her discography includes Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier (Clavier Records), A Bach Commemorative Recital (MIT Great Performances Archives), Chamber Music of Emma Lou Diemer (Orion), Schönberg's Pierrot Lunaire (Century), John Biggs' Variations on a Theme of Shostakovich (VMM), and Diemer's Piano Concerto (MMC), the latter two works composed for Oberacker. Honors accorded her include a Fulbright Research Fellowship to Italy and the University of California Distinguished Teaching Award, and her students hold important positions as performers and teachers in the U.S., Asia and Europe. Dr. Oberacker is UCSB Professor Emeritus, and enjoys an active performing, teaching and chamber music coaching schedule.
Adelle Rodkey, oboist, received her BM Degree in Music Pedagogy, magna cum laude, from Wheaton Conservatory of Music (Illinois), where she studied oboe with Carl Sonik. A native of Santa Barbara, she was an oboe student of Anne Anderson and a piano student of Lana Bodnar and Marilyn Clemons. Honors accorded her have included the President's Award from Wheaton College, as well as awards from the Music Teachers National Association and the Pillsbury Foundation. Adelle performs frequently in several orchestras and chamber music ensembles, and is Instructor of Oboe at Westmont College. As a member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas, she maintains a private studio of oboe and piano students.
Hailing from the Mid-west, Patty Volner was born and raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota. After receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts in ceramics and glass from the University of Minnesota it was on to Vermont College where she obtained a Master’s Degree in Art Therapy. Upon moving to Santa Barbara in 1979, she ran the art program at the Laurel Springs Institute, and over the years, she’s used her education and experience to bring art to people of all ages, working with the Children’s Creative Project; adults in day treatment and in-patient community mental health programs; patients in St. Francis Hospital’s Transitional Care Unit; and participants in SBCC’s OMEGA program, among others. In her many volunteer roles with non-profit organizations, she’s had the opportunity to hone skills in administration, communication, organization, and publicity, most recently serving as Executive Assistant to the Quire of Voyces and publicist for the American Choral Director’s Association Western Division conference. Patty's an avid genealogist, hiker, cook, and baker, and she's always on the lookout for great works of art and her next exciting travel adventure!