Antonella Coppi (Italy)

Antonella Coppi, born in Roma (Italy), 13/10/1971. She is actually Junior Professor (RTD) and Researcher in Music Pedagogy and Community Music at the Faculty of Education -Free University of Bozen-Bolzano.  Since 2000, she was lectures in Music Education – Faculties of Education Master Degree – of the University of Perugia and the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia in the field of Practice of Music and Music Education through University Choir and Orchestra. Since 2013 she was (temporary) Adjunct Professor in the same field at the Faculty of Education of the Free University of Bolzano. She has been Coordinator of the Master in Music Education and Research (University of Perugia) and Scientific Coordinator for the Research project “REMUS, Reggio Emilia, Musica Università, Scuola” (University of Modena e Reggio Emilia, 2003 – 2008).  Since 2001, for the Italian Ministry of Education, she is coordinator of many refresher courses for teachers in Music Education in Italian schools: she is member of the most important international society of Music Education (ISME, IMC, etc.).  Since 2010 she is Referent for International projects for El Sistema in Italy. She is also member of the Institutional Education Group for application of El Sistema in Reggio Emilia: from 2016 she is the Referent for every projects about El Sistema in the Trentino/Alto Adige Region (Italy).  Along with the teaching and research activity, she leads an important artistic work as Conductor of University Choirs and Orchestras, with over 400 concert around Italy and Europe: since 2008 she has been Scientific Referent of National Coordination of University Choirs and Orchestras in Italy.  Since 2000 she is the Italian referent for Song of Hope International Children´s Choir and Dance Program (Minneapolis, MN, USA). Since 2004 she is the Delegate from the Rector of the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia for the activities of University Choir and Orchestra (Protocollo Unimore-Uniss). Her research interests lie in music pedagogy and didactics with a focus on the teaching – learning process conveyed by the use of Vocal and Choir experience. The research project she is developing is related to El Sistema inspired Program n Italy with special focus on the Community Music Approach. Many are the participations in National and International Conferences and the pubblications.


Paolo Facincani (Italy)

Paolo Facincani was born in Verona, where he currently carries out his musical activity. He has conducted various choral formations (polyphonic, lyrical, male, female, treble voices) in repertoires of different eras and genres. He has taught in primary and secondary school, in the conservatories of Verona and Castelfranco Veneto. He was coordinator of the Rete Musica del Comune di Verona from 2009 to 2017. He has directed many theatrical works and sacred oratories for treble voices and youth choirs in their first performance. He has collaborated with the Fondazione Arena di Verona in theatre productions (Carmen, Tosca, Turandot, La Bohème, Pagliacci, Macbeth, Otello, Mefistofele) and lyrical-symphonic concerts (Carmina Burana, Mahler’s Symphony No. 3, Resurrexi, Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms, Mascagni’s Messa di Gloria) preparing the treble voices choir. He has collaborated with RAI and MEDIASET in television and radio programs. He has collaborated with pop singers (Al Bano, Elisa). He has performed several times at the Quirinale for the President of the Italian Republic and in Sala Paolo VI for the Holy Father. He has performed at the Salzburg Festival.


Patrick K. Freer (USA)

Patrick K. Freer is Professor of Music at Georgia State University (USA) and is Visiting Professor for the Fall 2018 term at the Universität Mozarteum Salzburg (Austria). His degrees are from Westminster Choir College and Teachers College-Columbia University. Dr. Freer has conducted or presented in 39 states and 23 countries, including recent guest conducting for the 2018 NW Division ACDA Youth Honor Choir and the 2017 choral symposium for the Bogotá Philharmonic Orchestra (Colombia). His 2018-19 guest conducting and lecturing take him to Austria, Germany, England, Italy, and Slovenia, and to the US states of Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Ohio, Texas, and Utah. Dr. Freer is Associate Editor of the International Journal of Research in Choral Singing, past editor of Music Educators Journaland is an Editorial Committee member for Update: Applications of Research in Music Education. He is a member of the ACDA National Standing Committee for Research & Publications.He has authored 3 textbooks, a DVD series for teachers, an extensive internet video series for middle school singers, 17 book chapters/sections, and over 120 articles in most of the field’s leading national and international journals.


Michael Fuchs (Germany)

Head of the Phoniatrics and Audiology Section and the Cochlear Implant Centre at Leipzig University Hospital. Specialist in ENT medicine and specialist in phoniatrics and pediatric audiology.
Born 1968 in Leipzig. In the youth member of the Stomanerchor Leipzig. Studied human medicine at the University of Leipzig. Private singing studies with KS Christa Maria Ziese. Study visits in Berlin (Charité) and Vienna (AKH). Doctorate and habilitation for the development of children’s and youth voices. Following a call for a university professorship at the University of Greifswald in 2009, he was appointed extraordinary professor and awarded the university teaching rights at the University of Leipzig.
Specialized care for singers and musicians with hearing and voice disorders, specialized care of children’s and youth voices. Further clinical and research focuses: Teacher’s voice, head-neck oncology, central auditory processing. Surgical spectrum in phonosurgery.
Extensive national and international lecturing and publishing activities. Lectureships in voice physiology at the Universities of Music and Theatre Leipzig and Weimar and at the University of Halle/Saale. Medical School Director at the Vocational School for Speech Therapy of the International Federation in Leipzig. Saxon state doctor for people with hearing, speech, language and voice disabilities. Member of the board of the German Society for Phoniatrics and Pedaudiology, the Collegium Medicorum Theatri, the Voice Foundation and the advisory board of the Arbeitskreis Musik in der Jugend. Founder and director of the Leipzig symposia on children’s and youth voices, publisher of the series “Kinder- und Jugendstimme”. President of the Förderkreis Thomanerchor Leipzig.
Johannes Zange Prize of the North-East German Society for Otorhinolaryngology and Cervicofacial Surgery, Gerhard-Kittel Medal and Karl Storz Prize for Academic Teaching of the German Society for Phoniatrics and Pedaudiology, Gustav-Wohlgemuth Plaque of the Saxon Choir Association. Married, one son.


Sonja Greiner (Germany)

Sonja Greiner is the Secretary General of the European Choral Association – Europa Cantat and a member of the Board of the World Youth Choir Foundation.
With her German father and French mother as well as her two brothers, she spent several years of her childhood and youth in Peru and Ecuador, Latin-America, and thus learnt three languages at the same time. She later spent one year in United Kingdom (as Au Pair) and one year in Metz, France (as language assistant).
After studying English, French and Spanish in Freiburg, Germany, and doing two years of teacher training, she first became the manager of the International Chamber-Choir Competition and the festival Musica Sacra International in Marktoberdorf (Germany) at the beginning of the 90ies. She later became deputy Secretary General and then Secretary General of Europa Cantat (European Choral Association – Europa Cantat since 2011).
Sonja Greiner was a member and Treasurer of both the European and the International Music Council between 2000 and 2013 and was elected Honorary Member of the International Music Council in 2015.


Giorgio Guiot (Italy)

Giorgio Guiot has a diploma in piano, choral music, choir conducting and composition. He is involved in music education, choral music and projects that bring music to people who have social, cultural, relational and communicative difficulties.
To date, he has conducted numerous choral groups, including “I Coristi Torinesi”, “Incontrocanto”, “Musica Laus” and “Il Coro del Bric”.
From 1992 to 2005 he directed the “Piccoli cantori” of Turin, with whom he participated in festivals, concerts, choral reviews and recordings. Founder and Artistic Director of the Cantascuola Association from 1998 to 2012. He is currently director of choirs Cantabile zero18 (children and youth choir), CantabiLAB, Cantabile Fabbricadivoci, Collegio Santa Caterina di Pavia and PolyEthnic, the choir of the Polytechnic of Turin. It also coordinates the activities of the ChoirMuse and the Choir Silver.
With his choirs he has collaborated with Josè Carreras, Cecilia Gasdia, Andrea Bocelli, Giuseppe Sinopoli, Claudio Abbado, Alain Guingal and John Mauceri, going on to collaborate in other musical fields with Jovanotti, Giorgio Li Calzi and Tatè N’songan. He has collaborated with prestigious choir directors such as Valeria Szebellédi , Voicu Popescu and Paulo Bernardino.
He is regularly invited to hold concerts, courses, conferences, seminars and choral and didactic workshops. music in Italy and abroad, with activities for children and young people and training courses and updating for teachers and musicians.
Through the association cantAbile onlus and renewArti works for the realization of projects of education and training, with a particular focus on the fields of communication and relationships,
research and health, in collaboration with specialists in different fields of research and development such as psychology, psychiatry, neurology, phoniatry and philosophy.
He has edited the revision of the Cantar Leggendo method by Roberto Goitre and is the author of numerous specialist publications in the fields of music teaching, choral music diffusion
and studies of music and discomfort.


David Johnson (Sweden)

David Johnson is a full time doctoral student in Music Pedagogy at the Malmö Academy of Music, Sweden, since September, 2015. The focus of his doctoral study is evolving singing practices and song repertoire in Swedish schools. David is a coordinator for Singing in Music Education (SiME) (https://eas-music.org), a European research organization that brings together dozens of vocal education researchers and practitioners associated with the European Association for Music in Schools (EAS). The focus of SiME is to drive collaborative international research in singing and to create platforms to impact classroom practice through research and communication, policy advocacy, and teacher education. David has also been involved in establishing the pan-Nordic singing network Sang i Norden (https://sanginorden.com) that brings together singers, teachers, and policy makers from Greenland to Finland with a shared interest in promoting singing culture in both formal and informal educational contexts throughout Scandinavia.

Since December, 2017, David has worked as an assistant editor for the International Journal for Education in the Arts (IJEA). He is also the editor of the forthcoming book, Confluence – perspectives from an intercultural music exchange in Nepal (Lund University Press).

David Johnson has a Master’s Degree from the Malmö Music Academy in Music Pedagogy, a Master’s in Classical Guitar from the Royal Danish Conservatory, Copenhagen, Denmark, and a Bachelor of Arts, Philosophy (Honours) from McGill University, Canada.


Sanna Salminen (Finland)

Sanna Salminen is the conductor of the Vox Aurea children’s choir, one of the top choirs in Finland, since 2009. She is also an acknowledged music educator in her home country. She has led many workshops and lectures in international conferences and festivals in the USA, South Africa, Thailand and European countries. She works as a university teacher in Music Pedagogy under the Department of Teacher Education at the University of Jyväskylä. She graduated with a licentiate degree from the University of Jyväskylä in 2004. Her main subject was Music Education and during her studies she specialized in conducting and multicultural music. She has performed and led various instrumental and vocal groups of many genres of music. Salminen has worked as the voice trainer and assistant conductor of Musica Chamber Choir (1998-2005) and Vox Aurea (1998-2007) and she also established the Ruamjai youth choir which she conducted from 2000 to 2009. Sanna Salminen is known for publishing widely used school music books, arrangements and compositions. As a researcher, her main subject is the enhancement of involvement and well-being through musical hobbies. In 2018, she was awarded the Heinz Hofmann medal, the highest badge of merit by the Youth Choir association in Finland.


Helmut Schaumberger (Austria)

Helmut Schaumberger is Assistant at the Mozarteum University Salzburg where he gives lectures in didactics and music making in the classroom. He is coordinator of the teacher-training-program and the School of Music and Arts Education (SOMA). Helmut Schaumberger has a master´s degree in Music Education (University of Music Vienna, 1997) and German Language (University of Vienna, 1995). From 1998 until 2017 he has been teaching Music Education and German Language at an Austrian grammar school. He has been conducting school-choirs and several semi-professional choirs. Currently he attends a PhD-study at the Mozarteum University in Salzburg. His main research interest is the improvement of training courses for conductors of children´s choirs and youth choirs. As a guest lecturer he conducted courses at the University for Music and Performing Arts in Stuttgart (2015) and the Academy of Music Ljubljana (2017). In 2017 Helmut Schaumberger founded the EAS-Special Focus Group SiME (Singing in Music education), an international platform for scientists and practitioners in the field of singing in schools.


Friedhilde Trüün (Germany)

As honorary professor for children’s choir conducting and voice training at the Hochschule für Kirchenmusik Tübingen, Friedhilde Trüün holds seminars for students and leads the children’s choirs of the “Tübinger Neckarschwalben” and the Tübingen Youth Choir at the local music school. It teaches teachers in kindergarten and elementary school the basics of voice formation, which can be implemented playfully with children. Her handbook with DVD “Sing Sang Song I and II” serves countless children’s choir leaders as a basis for imaginative voice training and was awarded the “Best Edition” music prize in 2010. Her recently published “Sing Sang Song III” with voice training for young people also deals with voice changers. Her project “SingBach” with works arranged for children at Bach´schen and “SingRomantik” with romantic arrangements for children has been carried out by Friedhilde Trüün at numerous primary schools in Germany and Switzerland.


Riekie Van Aswegen (South Africa)

Riekie’s contribution to tertiary education includes lecturing music for 26 years, firstly at the Pretoria Onderwyskollege (Pretoria College of Education) followed by a senior lecturing position at the University of Pretoria. Her doctorate research focused on conductor’s challenges in choosing repertoire for children’s choirs. Her latest scholarly contribution is a chapter published in 2017; Setting the tone for critical supervision pedagogy. She is currently involved in postgraduate supervision and author of tertiary curricula for teacher’s training in Creative Arts.
She was conductor of the regional Jacaranda Children’s Choir for 12 years. Accolades during this period include performing at the opening and closing ceremony of the 17th International Choir Olympics in Giessen and two golden awards, as well as invitations to numerous international events, including the Sympaatti Festival in Finland.
Riekie is co-author of the Collage series music books of which two are prescribed by the Western Cape Province Department of Education, South Africa.
She composes and arranges works for children’s choirs. She is the conductor of the SingFonix Male ensemble and the Laerskool Anton van Wouw Junior Choir (2017 Junior Choir winners of two national South African competitions: ATKV Applous and the television competition Sing in Harmonie.) The SingFonix male vocal ensemble was awarded gold and a category winner in the 2018’s Choir Olympics.


Margré van Gestel (Netherlands)

Margré van Gestel is an avid music educator since 1976 with a specialisation in young children. After receiving a degree as a primary school teacher she obtained a certificate Orff Schulwerke (1978) a higher degree in Music in Education (Conservatory Utrecht 1993). As the co-founder of the Dutch foundation Music on the lap – early childhood music education 0-4 – she made substantial contributions to its accredited teacher training course and was chair from 2008-2013. As a music pedagogue she organises music education courses for parents with children 0-4, the courses ’musical adventures’ for children 5-7, singing classes for children 6-10 and teenagers 11-18 years. As a choir director she guides children and teenagers (church choirs) and many people experienced the joy of singing in one of her choirs. As a specialist Infant Mental Health she is now also using the power of singing and music to improve the relation parent-child.

She was secretary and later chair of the Dutch Foundation Toddlers and Music (1989-2001) and, since 2002, secretary of the board of Gehrels Music Education (Dutch National Society for Music Education). Margré is an ISME member since 1992, was chair of the Early Childhood Music Education Commission (2010-2014) and board member of the International Society for Music Education (ISME) 2014-2018. She has published in national and international journals and has presented at many conferences and symposia since 1992.


Motje Wolf (UK)

Dr Motje Wolf holds a position as VC2020 Lecturer in Education at De Montfort University Leicester, UK. Her research focuses on music teacher practice. Her current projects include the investigation of Models in Vocal Education (MOVE) and Enhancing Music Access (EMA). EMA aims to research, improve and share good practice in music teaching, focussing on various subject areas, such as making music with sounds and singing. MOVE is establishing current and historical models of vocal education. Dr Wolf leads the Music MESHGuide project as Editor-in-Chief aiming to share research results with teachers globally and heads up the Music Education Research Group at De Montfort University. Furthermore, Dr Wolf is part of the steering committee of ‘Singing in Music Education’ (special focus group of the European Association of Music in Schools). Dr Wolf also works as a professional mezzo-soprano soloist and sings as a lay clerk at Leicester Cathedral.