Mary Ann Fratia
Course Director for J/I and I/S Music Education
About Mary Ann
Mary Ann Fratia earned her Bachelor of Music Education and Bachelor of Education degrees from the University of Toronto and her Masters of Music Education degree from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. She has taught instrumental and vocal music for 35 years in both Ontario and Manitoba at both the elementary and secondary levels. Mary Ann served as a former Head of Music and was the Arts and HPE Coordinator (K-12) with the Peel DSB. A recipient of various OSSTF, Peel DSB, Ontario Band Association and IAJE awards, and most recently, the Ontario Music Educators Association Honorary Life Membership Award, she was also just recently nominated for the Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award at York University’s Faculty of Education. Mary Ann is currently the Course Director for J/I and I/S music education at York University, Sessional Lecturer for I/S Music at OISE/University of Toronto in the Masters of Teaching program, has served as a Practicum Facilitator for pre-service education students at York University and OISE/UT (K-12) has written and currently instructs various Music ABQ and AQ courses for OISE/University of Toronto. She has also serves as an education/music consultant with TVO Kids and more recently, Kondolole Films on various elementary music/language programming as well as teaching in the Building Leadership for Change program (International Education) at OISE/UT. She has served on the Board of Directors for the Coalition for Music Education in Canada, various OMEA Conference committees and enjoys adjudicating various music festivals across Canada. She has been the director of many award-winning wind ensembles, instrumental and vocal jazz ensembles, chamber ensembles and has had numerous articles published in various music, arts and teaching provincial and national journals.
Lyric soprano, Gloria Gassi has been described as “vocally outstanding, with an empathy for the spirit of the song” (Messiah, Handel), and “dramatically captivating, with beautiful tone and a prowess for ringing high notes.” (Fiordiligi, Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte).
Representative Oratorio performances in Canada and abroad include Bach’s St. John Passion, Bach’s Jauchzet Gott in allen Landen, Brahms’ Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, Handel’s Saul, Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass, Haydn’s Missa Brevis, Honegger’s King David, Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater, Purcell’s Ode to St. Cecilia, Schubert’s Mass in G, Rutter’s Magnificat, Vaughan Williams’ Mass in G and Serenade to Spring.
Ms. Gassi maintains a vibrant, thriving studio, where the natural gift of each voice is honoured and developed. Her students, from both Toronto and London, have won national awards, attained university degrees in Voice Performance and Education, and are working professionally in opera, choral singing, theatre, television and radio.
Ms. Gassi sang as soloist and in ensemble with the acclaimed Elmer Iseler Singers, performing in Canada, U.S.A., Germany and the Orient. A seasoned conductor at all levels of education, her choirs, have sung internationally and been described as having “a warm, resonant tone with precise intonation and artistic musical expression.”
Ms. Gassi holds a Master of Music with Honours in Voice Performance and Literature, (Western University) a Licentiate and Associateship in Voice Performance, Gold Medal, and an ARCT in piano. She is the recipient of several awards, notably the Sir Ernest MacMillan award for conducting, (Mendelssohn Foundation) and Western University Students’ Council Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching.
A frequent guest clinician, she has adjudicated both Voice and Choral festivals in Ontario, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Alberta. Ms. Gassi is appointed to the Department of Performance Studies at the Don Wright Faculty of Music, Western University, where she teaches Voice and conducts the St. Cecilia Singers.
Coordinator of Bands
Dr. Colleen Richardson is the Coordinator of Bands and directs the Wind Ensemble at Western University in London, Ontario, the second largest music program in Canada. She teaches undergraduate music education classes, graduate courses in conducting and wind literature, and supervises the Western Young Winds program, which is a community outreach band for students in grades six to nine taught by undergraduate music education majors. Under her direction, the Western University Wind Ensemble has produced two CDs, Apparitions (Albany Records, 2011) and Explorations (Mark Records, 2016); both recordings are available through itunes and Amazon.com.
Besides being active as a clinician, adjudicator and guest conductor nationally, Dr. Richardson has guest conducted or presented her research at conferences in Ireland, Switzerland, Italy, Taiwan, Indonesia, Japan, Wales, and the US. Her research focuses on wind literature, conducting pedagogy, and ensemble rehearsal techniques. Publications include articles for the Canadian Winds, and the Canadian Music Educator Journal, as well as study guides within eight volumes of the Teaching Music Through Performance in Band series. In 2012, Dr. Richardson produced and edited the Hunsberger DVD within GIA’s DVD set entitled Three Icons: Frank Battisti, Donald Hunsberger, and H. Robert Reynolds.
A native of Winnipeg, Dr. Richardson graduated from Brandon University (BMus Ed), the University of Calgary (Wind Conducting Diploma, MMus Conducting), and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (DMA Wind Conducting). Her primary conducting teachers have been Rodney Winther and Glenn Price. However, she has also had opportunities to study with many other well respected composers and conductors, including: Craig Kirchhoff, Karel Husa, Warren Benson, David Maslanka, Eugene Corporon, Mallory Thompson, Robert Reynolds, and Jerry Junkin.
While in Cincinnati completing her doctorate, Dr. Richardson co-directed the Tri-State Chamber Players, as well as served as the Music Director and Conductor of the Cincinnati Youth Wind Ensemble. Prior to her graduate studies, she taught general, choral, and instrumental music in the Canadian school system for 14 years.
Currently, Dr. Richardson serves on the boards of WASBE (World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles) and the OBA (Ontario Band Association). She is also active on the CBDNA Music Education Committee (College Band Directors National Association).
Professor of Instrumental Ensembles Techniques
Linda is a Western University grad, and has taught instrumental music for 32 years. She received an Award of Excellence with the Thames Valley District School Board, and the Dennis Brown Lifetime Achievement Award (Jack Richardson Music Awards).