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About Marcia P. Hoffman School of the Arts

The Marcia P. Hoffman School of the Arts at Ruth Eckerd Hall is one of the largest providers of arts education and outreach in the nation.  Reaching more than 40,000 students annually, we provide over 80,000 hours of high-caliber arts experiences. Our programs extend far beyond our walls into local schools, neighborhood centers, hospitals, specialty residences and other arts centers throughout our community, region and nation. We believe the arts change lives and continue to provide access to the arts for all ages and abilities – no borders, no boundaries.


Get To Know Our Instructors

 

Randy-Nataraj-Allen









Randy Nataraj-Allen : Piano and Voice

Formal Education:

  • Master’s Degree: curriculum & Instructional / Technology - Grand Canyon University – Phoenix, AZ
  • Bachelor of Church Music: Samford University – Birmingham, AL Major: Voice, Minor: Piano

Awards / Accolades: 

  • Voted “Educator of the Year 2002-2003”

Experience / Performances:

  • August 1995 – Present: Music Teacher, Pinellas County Schools – Largo, FL
  • 2007 Elementary All county chorus conductor
  • 2002-2003 Elementary Music Educator of the Year
  • James B. Sanderlin PK-8 IB World School: grades K-5 and two classes
  • Fairmount Park Elementary: K-5 Music Itinerate
  • Northwest Elementary K-5 Music Itinerate
  • Lakewood Elementary K-5 Music Itinerate
  • Starkey Elementary: K-5 Music Itinerate
  • Cypress Woods Elementary: K-5 two choruses and recorder
  • South Ward Elementary: K-5 and two choruses
  • Orange Grove Elementary: k-3, SLI and SLD (195-1996 only)
  • January 1991-Present: Voice and Piano Instructor: Marcia P Hoffman School of the Arts

William-Cusick

William Cusick : Piano Vocal Instruction, Accompanist, Music Director for Stage Productions

Formal Education:

  • Bachelor Degree in Music Education from State University of New York and Fredonia
  • One semester abroad in Antwerp, Belgium studying music and art at the Royal Flemish Conservatory of Music
  • Master Degree in Piano Performance from University of South Florida

Awards / Accolades:

  • Voted Favorite Musical Director six times by the Grapevine Theater Publication.

Statement of philosophy:

Even your smallest experiences can open doorways to greater learning.

Experience / Performances:

  • As a Music Director he has worked at Bartk’e Dinner Theatre in Tampa, the Show Boat Dinner Theatre in
    Clearwater, Hudson, community Theaters throughout Pinellas County, various high schools and instructs and
    accompanies for the Marcia P. Hoffman School of the Arts summer programs, Children’s Choir and Center Stage
    Choir.
  • Bill has worked with actors Donald O’Connor, Dacid Naughton, from the comedy sitcom “My Sister Sam”, big
    ban singer and soloist Kay Stevens, opera singer Georgio Tozzi and composer/lyricist Marin Hamlisch.
  • He has taught math, voice and keyboard at a private school in New Port Richey.

Carolyn-Cline

Carolyn Cline : Piano, Voice, Guitar, Flute

Formal Education:

  • Master of Arts in Music Education, University of South Florida in Tampa
  • Bachelor of Music Applied Piano/Music Theory, Eastern New Mexico University in Portales, NM
  • Florida Teaching Certificates: Music K‐12 (ESE); Elementary Education K‐6
  • Orff Level I & II Certifications from University of South Florida in Tampa, FL

Awards / Accolades:

  • 2004 Televised Broadcast on Fox 13; “What’s right with Tampa Bay
  • Coach/Sponsor of the Tampa Cougarettes, who won 2004 Outstanding Disabled Star Athletes of the Year from
    the John E. Lynch foundation in Tampa, FL
  • 2004‐2006 Exceptional Cheer and Dance Division
  • 2005‐2006 US Open Cheerleading and Dance Championships in Orlando and Miami, FL
  • Stuart Veteran’s Day Parade: “Best Patriotic Theme” trophy for the Treasure Coast Flag Corp
  • 1979 Miss America 2nd runner‐up and first in Talent Award
  • 1978 Miss Florida and 1st in Talent Award
  • 1973 Miss USA Universe Pageant and 1st in Swimsuit Award.
  • 1973 Miss New Mexico Universe

Statement of philosophy:

The piano is the mother of all instruments. Music should be an important part in the life of every well rounded individual. Music is very beneficial to building skills that can be applied to other areas of life and learning.

Experience / Performances:

  • Patsy Cline impersonator, pageant talent performances

Luba-Geyer

Luba Geyer : Violin and Viola

Formal Education: 

  • Bachelor of Music, Music Education, college of Music, Russia
  • Master of Music, Music Education, Rostov Conservatory, Russia

Statement of philosophy:

Working with students through their strengths and weaknesses to develop the discipline and dedication needed to succeed. Identifying student characteristics, working with the student to develop musical potential, artistic skills and self-awareness while building love for the instrument.

Experience / Performances:

  • Violin instructor for St. Petersburg College, FL
  • Taught at Music Academy for Children in Brooklyn, New York and College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, University of Tampa
  • Chamber musician in various recitals
  • Former member of the Symphony Orchestra, Russia
  • Active in the state and local community, e.g. grand opening of Clearwater Library and St. Petersburg College Library

Gail-Lawhead

Gail Lawhead : Piano

Formal Education:

  • Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, from Cedarville University, Cedarville, Ohio
  • Ohio and Florida teaching certificates

Awards / Accolades

  • Accompanied Superior rated choirs and soloists
  • Students receive Superior at solo/ensemble
  • Students accepted into music degree programs
  • Best of all – my own 3 children, all graduates of the International Baccalaureate program, who became
    music students and performers.

Statement of philosophy:

I want music to be part of your life for all of your life! I am committed to educating the whole person through the discovery and love of music, the discipline of daily practice, and study of music theory. I will challenge you with specially selected pieces for your level and interest in an atmosphere of encouragement and fun!

Experience / Performances:

  • Accompanist for area school choirs and for solo/ ensemble vocal festivals
  • Accompanist for Florida Vocal Association festivals
  • Pianist/Keyboardist for Faith Community church band and other services
  • Adjudicator for piano festivals
  • Piano teacher for 30 years with students ranging from ages 5-75
  • Plan and schedule student performances at nursing homes
  • Toured with a college music group, performing in various churches, halls and events, including the Prime Minister of Jamaica.

Chris-Liddell

Chris Liddell : Dance

Formal Education:

  • Certified in the American Ballet Theatre’s National Training Curriculum in Pre-Primary through Level 3
  • Trained by such notables as Chet Walker, Dana Moore, Kathryn Sullivan, Ray Hesselink, Denise Donovan, Sofia Carreras, Raymond Lukens and many other Ballet and Broadway legends.

Awards / Accolades:

  • "B.A.L.L.E.T a Romance," a short film Chris directed and choreographed with dancers from American Ballet Theatre and Dance Theatre of Harlem was chosen as Pointe magazine's Editor's Choice Film for April.
  • Excellence in Choreography, New York Musical Festival, Assoc. Choreographer, "Ward 9"

Statement of philosophy:

I believe that dance is for everyone. Whether you are training for the professional stage or your living room extravaganza's, dance is a vital human expression. It inspires us to be better people.

Experience / Performances: 

  • Artist in Residence with Tampa Ballet Theatre
  • Taught at STEPS on Broadway in New York City, Yale University and with the Cecchetti Ballet Council of America.
  • Christopher’s previous work includes performing in musicals such as A Chorus Line, 42nd St, My Fair Lady, and Anything Goes
  • He has choreographed and appeared in pop concerts and music videos with Grammy nominated Larry Dvoskin and Sean Avolio, and performed with the New York City Master Chorale at Lincoln Center.
  • He also makes frequent appearances in the dance concert circuit, most notably in the New York Jazz Choreography Project and other showcases with his dance company “Le Troupe Liddell!”

Peggy-Sheffield.png

Peggy Sheffield : Acting, On Camera and Stage

Formal Education:

  • Bachelor of Fine Arts Theatre, Florida State University, 1979

Awards / Accolades:

  • Robert B. Challener, 1975
  • Arbie Award for Best Actress

Statement of philosophy:

My personal philosophy for providing acting lessons to my students is a reflection of my own experiences both acting and being a mother. I offer practical, sensible guidance on how to maximize each student’s unique attributes and talents in a loving way that encourages them to explore (and expand) their personal potential. My style is built on encouragement and honesty. I do not mislead students with false promises of instant success, but I do help them realize the joy and gratification that making the most of their skills in the performing arts can provide.

Experience / Performances:

  • Professional actor for over 25 years, working in film, television, commercials, industrials, voiceovers and theatre
  • Member of SAG, AFTRA, and AEA. Credits include feature films Out of Time, Jeepers Creepers, Burning Bright and The Year of Getting To Know Us with Jimmy Fallon and Lucy Liu, TV’s One Tree Hill and HBO’s Recount, numerous commercials
  • Voice for a new gaming company at Armacham.com.
  • Taught actors and coached privately in New York, Los Angeles and Florida as well as teaching workshops and adjudicating for State Thespian Festivals for the past several years.

Linda-Switzer

Linda Switzer : Voice

Formal Education: 

  • Master of Music Voice Performance from Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music
  • Bachelor of Music Education from Longwood University in Farnville, VA

Awards / Accolades:

  • Prize winner in the Florida District Metropolitan Opera auditions
  • Prize winner in the Atlanta Regional Metropolitan Opera Auditions

Statement of philosophy:

A music education should be available to anyone, in any walk of life, at any age.

Experience / Performances:

  • Active as a performer in regional opera, zarzuela, and musical theater, she has performed roles with Opera Tampa, Sarasota Opera, Orlando Opera, Florida Lyric Opera
  • Performed with The Florida Orchestra, Treasure Coast Opera, Pensacola Opera, and Spanish Lyric Theatre
  • Held a role in the world premiere of Anton Coppola’s Sacco and Vanzetti under the baton of Conductor Anton Coppola
  • She recently preformed the widow in the Spanish version of the Merry Widow, entitled La Viuda Alegre, for the Spanish Lyric Theatre
  • Linda owns the Florida Arts School and is an adjunct professor of voice at St. Petersburg College
  • She is proud of many of her students who have gone on to have major carets on Broadway and in television and film.
  • On Broadway Linda’s students have performed in : Annie, Matilda, Les Miserables, The Grinch, and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
  • Her students have performed at the Asolo Theatre and American Stage.
  • In television, students have appeared in Law and Order, Hairspray, Gran Torino, The Good Wife, Sex and City, American Dreams, The B--- in Apartment 23, Desperate Housewives, and one is a weatherman on Augusta, GA television.

Pegg Winter

Pegg Winter : Piano, Voice, Voiceovers

Formal Education:

  • Bachelor of Music from ESU
  • Thirty years teaching and professionally performing. Broadway/national Tours, Off Broadway, Cabaret/recording artist.
  • North Wood institute, Dallas TX
  • Intensive workshop with Lehman Engel, Sheldon Harnick, Sylvia Syms, Ralph Affamaudo, Tommy Tune, Maury Yeston
  • Studied with: Tommy Tune, Maury Yeston, Arthur Kopit, Jack Eddlemen, Tommy Krasker, Phyllis Gandy, Michael Tester and more.

Awards / Accolades:

  • CD; South for the Winter, released in 2000
  • Fifteen Years on iTunes and Spotify
  • Broadway and National tour of NINE with Sergio Franchi / Zev Buffman Producer

Statement of philosophy:

Inspire students to be themselves and explore their talent and true ambition. A safe haven to explore the art of performance for everything they want and can be.

Experience / Performances:

  • Broadway and National tour of NINE
  • Mama Rose in Gypsy
  • Oragula in Starmites
  • Tricia in THE LAST SESSION
  • Acid Queen in TOMMY
  • Mary Magdalene in JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR
  • FRINGE FESTIVAL BLACKULA
  • Over 2000 performances across the United States
  • Many Commercial voiceovers including Laser Knife and Swiffer
  • National Anthem for NY Jests / NJ Devils
  • Don’t Tell Mamas NYC
  • Opera: Carmen, Fort Worth Opera