Young Cello Artists

Alannis Barber

Alannis is a Music Education major at Eastern Michigan University. Alannis began playing the cello in their middle school orchestra and graduated from Clarkston High School where they studied with Anna Richert. Prior to working with Professor Pae, during high school, Alannis performed in the Oakland Youth Orchestra's (OYO) Symphony Orchestra and attended Michigan's Solo and Ensemble for multiple years, performing cello solos and string quartet. In their free time, Alannis enjoys learning to crochet and playing video games. They are excited for the opportunity to continue their education and widen their experience in music!

Kara Bishop

Kara Bishop is an undergraduate at Eastern Michigan University pursuing a major in Mechanical Engineering and a minor in Spanish. Originally from Farmington Hills Michigan, she has played cello for nine years now, and had the pleasure of playing in the school orchestras conducted by John Kennedy. In addition to Orchestra, she also played cello in the pit for her high school, North Farmington. She performed in Seussical, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and Into the Woods. In addition to musicals and playing the cello, Kara’s interests include home renovations, woodworking, painting, and handmade projects, swimming and tennis, exploring Northern Michigan, and spending time with her family. She is thrilled to be a member of the EMU Symphony Orchestra cello section and working with Professor Pae! 

Delani Creech

Delani Creech is currently pursuing her Bachelor's Degree in Music Performance at Eastern. She has been an active member of the EMU Symphony Orchestra, a presenter at the 43nd Undergraduate Sympoisum, and the recipient of the 2023-2024 Undergraduate Symposium Silver Anniversary Scholarship from the Eastern Michigan University College of Arts & Sciences in recognition of her presentation, "The Intricacies of the Prelude, Sarabande, and Gigue from Bach's Suite No. 1 for Solo Cello", at the 2023 EMU Undergraduate Symposium.

A native of Clawson, Michigan, she was a student of Jordan Schug for four years prior to working with Professor Pae. In high school she participated yearly in MSBOA's State Solo and Ensemble, performed in her high school's orchestra, and participated annually in Oakland University's High School Honors Orchestra. She is also a founding member of the Independent String Program  (ISP)of Berkley, a program that focuses on improvised music, and is now a student assistant coach in the program. In her free time she enjoys reading, playing video games, and hanging out with her friends.

Grace Frielink

A native of Sycamore, Illinois, Grace Frielink is pursuing her bachelor's degree in Music Therapy at Eastern Michigan University. Prior to working with Professor Pae, she was a student of Linc Smelser for six years. During her time in high school, Grace participated in All-State Festivals, was a member of the Kishwaukee Symphony Orchestra, and performed the Lalo Cello Concerto with her high school orchestra. A frequent collaborator with local artists in the Ann Arbor area, she is also working on producing her own music under the name “Grassy.” Grace has presented at EMU’s 42nd Annual Undergraduate Symposium and teaches violin and cello at the Michigan Music Academy. She is the recipient of the 2021-2022 Zhiwen Situ Cello Scholarship.

Lauryn Hightower

Native of Monroe, Michigan, Lauryn Hightower is pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Music Education at Eastern Michigan Univeresity where she hopes to become an orchestral director to both middle and high school music students. Lauryn is currently a member of The Beehive Trio, which she and friends from her hometown founded, and has attended the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp and Bedford Strings Camp for 5 years. She was also President of the Monroe High School Orchestra, and participated in both Chamber Strings and Frenchtown Fiddlers. In her free time, Lauryn enjoys drawing, journaling, and binge watching TV!

Lauren McKague

Cellist Lauren is currently completing her undergraduate degree in Cello Performance at Eastern Michigan University’s School of Music & Dance. Starting the cello at age 13 and immediately falling in love with the instrument, in 2017, she began studying with Professor Pae through the Early College Alliance program, a completely unique educational program designed to fully immerse high school-aged students into the post-secondary learning environment. Lauren’s musical passions include orchestra, solo performance, chamber music, mentoring, teaching, and performance librarianship. In addition to her studies at EMU, she has served as a mentor for the Detroit Civic Youth Ensembles, performed with the Detroit Symphony Youth Orchestra, participated in several chamber ensembles, played for several musical pits, and has enjoyed professional teaching and performing opportunities. With music, Lauren hopes to bring meaningful art to communities. She is the 2022-2023 recipient of the Zhiwen Situ Cello Scholarship.



Recent EMU CELLO Alumni:


Athena Goppold

Athena Goppold is a graduate of the Music Therapy program at Eastern Michigan University and recently completedc her clinical internship at Hudson Valley Hospice, in Poughkeepsie, New York. During her internship, her responsibilities included maintaining a caseload of 25-30 hospice patients including scheduling sessions, maintaining documentation of visits, and leading music therapy sessions. She visisted various hospitals in Poughkeepsie once a week to visit hospice patients with high needs and many moments during her internship invoved stepping in to visit actively dying patients.

Originally a biology major at Eastern with a general music minor, she auditioned for music therapy at the end of her second year. During those first two years, it was evident that Athena's passion for music outweighed any of her other interests; she found herself spending more and more time playing cello.

When speaking about her encounter with music, Athena states, "Everything clicked when I learned what music therapy actually was; I had never heard of the profession until joining the EMU Cello Studio. Since starting music therapy, I have taken my cello studies very seriously; I am excited to perform the first movement of the Haydn Cello Concerto in C Major next month at the Undergraduate Symposium. I am incredibly thankful for the opportunities that I have here; I would not be where I am today without the EMU Cello studio."

 Alice HaEun Cho


South Korean-Canadian cellist, Alice HaEun Cho, completed her Masters in Music Education at Eastern Michigan University in 2021 where she also served as the Graduate Assistant in Orchestral Studies and Principal of cello section of the EMU Symphony Orchestra. Alice is a regular participant of multiple festivals and competitions where she has received awards including the Anna Margaret Wallace and Willam Alexander Mccoy Scholarship, the Colin Hampton Award, the Gregor Piatigorsky Memorial Award, Muir Laura Kinton, and Sharon Stevenson Career Development Scholarship. She is also the winner of the 2020 Gradate Performance Competition at EMU's School of Music & Dance performing the Elgar Cello Concerto in E minor. Alice has participated in masterclasses with Laurence Lesser, Joseph Johnson, Winona Zelenka, Rachel Mercer, Barry Schiffman, Gryphon Trio, Orford Quartet, and Shauna Rolston. She holds a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Cello Performance from the University of Toronto where she studied with Shauna Rolston.


Jamie Gallupe

Jamie Gallupe completed her B.M in Cello Performance in 2017, and went on to do a master's degree at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University in Cello Performance with a major in Historical Performance on baroque cello and viola da gamba, graduating in 2019. 

Some highlights during her time there include- serving as Musician in Residence at the Edenwald Community, receiving the Viola da Gamba Society of America’s Professional Development Grant, performing a concerto with the Baltimore Baroque Band, and representing Peabody at the Bloomington Early Music Festival. Additional performances include the Peabody Opera, Peabody String Sinfonia, Peabody Renaissance Ensemble, Charm City Baroque, and the Peabody Renaissance Chamber Ensemble. After completing her master's, Jamie moved back to Ann Arbor where she serves as faculty at the Ann Arbor Community School of Music teaching cello, chamber music, as well as serving as assistant director of the Brandenburg Project. She also acts as Director of Choral Activities at Emmanuel Lutheran Church in Ypsilanti, and boasts a robust private studio. In the summer of 2019 Jamie was also appointed to the Board of Directors of the Viola da Gamba Society of America.

Recent performances and ongoing collaborations include: Audivi, The Bach Abel Society, Musica Spira (Baltimore), The Flint Symphony, L’invenzione, The Mirai Collective, and the University of Michigan Chamber Choir. In March 2020 Jamie looks forward to premiering the program “Witches: Revered and Reviled” with Burning River Baroque in Cleveland, which includes a newly commissioned opera “The Ballad of Mary and Margaret” by Alexis Bacon. 

Thomas Loescher

Always known as the Rhythm Guy, or someone who “ate a metronome for breakfast” (Anthony Elliott), Thomas Loescher was immediately drawn into the complexities of chamber music. He joined the Bernard A. Galler Quartet at the age of eight, and has since spent little time outside of ensemble performing. Although he was homeschooled, he managed to participate in three youth orchestras: the Michigan Youth Symphony Orchestra, the Michigan Philharmonic Youth Orchestra, and the Ypsilanti Youth Orchestra. His private instructors included Daniel Thomas, Diane Winder, Deborah Pae, and he currently studies with Dr. Kimberly Patterson. In 2014, he won the Michigan Philharmonic Orchestra’s Fellowship Award, opening the way for him to be invited back many times as a substitute section cellist in the following years. He is currently seeking a Master in Music Performance at the University of Memphis. In 2019, he won the first holding of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra’s Musician Fellowship Program, allowing him to perform as a regular substitute section cellist.

Anthony Marchese

Anthony Marchese began his cello studies at 10 years of age in a public school music program. He very quickly developed a passion for music, both performance and composition. After high school, Anthony attended Eastern Michigan University where he studied under Dr. Diane Winder and Deborah Pae. During his time at EMU Anthony was a featured soloist with the EMU Symphony and won the Barry Manilow Concerto Competition. In 2018 Anthony graduated Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in cello performance. Post graduation, Anthony won a competitive assistantship at Bowling Green State University where he currently sits principal cello of the BGSU Philharmonia and is a member of BGSU’s Graduate String Quartet. Most recently Anthony has performed as a soloist on Jennifer Higdon’s Dance Card with the Perrysburg Symphony, performed on the popular radio show New Music from Bowling Green, and performed Anthony Cheung’s Distance over Speed for contemporary cellist Chris Gross.

Kimberly Smallwood

Kim Smallwood studied Music and Arts Administration at Eastern Michigan University from 2012 to 2018. During her time at EMU, she studied under Kate Blaha, Daniel Thomas, and Deborah Pae. She now works at SHAR Music as a Marketing Specialist. Outside of work, Kim is an active cellist in the community and plays in musical pit orchestras across Southeastern Michigan. She also volunteers her time planning and publicizing community dances and events for the Ann Arbor Community for Traditional Music and Dance (AACTMAD). Her passion for traditional music has led her to explore contemporary cello accompaniment techniques by attending camps like Mike Block String Camp and Northeastern Heritage Music Camp and taking lessons with contemporary cellists like Natalie Haas and Mike Block. Presently, Kim is the cellist in Hotline Strings, a traditional contra dance band that performs various genres of traditional fiddle music with a modern twist for contra and square dances across the state of Michigan and beyond. 

Jillian Sanders

Jillian Sanders is a music therapy major and completed her course work in December 2019. She recently accepted an internship position at the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Fort Logan! CMHI is a civil psychiatric facility where Jillian will be supervised by Julia Lamb (M.M., MT-BC), who practices Neurologic Music Therapy (NMT). NMT is the therapeutic use of music applied to sensory, speech and language, cognitive, and motor dysfunctions after a neurologic event or diagnosis. This therapy examines how music is processed and perceived in the brain, and how music therapists can use that as a tool in neuro-rehabilitation to improve non-musical goals.  

To further develop her musical and pedagogical skills, she has been extensively teaching lessons in cello, piano, voice, guitar and ukulele. During Jillian's time at Eastern, she was awarded the Dillman Scholarship, which was awarded based on her achievements in performance and creativity specific to her major.