Our Teachers

All of our teachers are passionate about music and the development of children.

They create a fun, informal, social setting that spurs engagement and supports each child's musical development.

 

photo Donetta Riley, Director

Donetta Riley, a singer, actor, and improviser, holds an M.F.A. in Theatre Arts, with an emphasis in teaching from the University of Louisville. Donetta has seven neices, two nephews, two grand-nieces and two-god children.
She teaches the ART Masters program at PS 187 and also is the owner of Kids Fun Parties. She facepaints, balloon twists and does competitive body painting, turning grownups into Sci-Fi creatures.

     
Kathleen Kilbane

Kathleen Kilbane has a BA in Music from Smith College and a MM in vocal performance from New England Conservatory. She has performed in theaters throughout the Northeast and is an active freelance singer. She also teaches in the after-school music program at the Caedmon School. Her three children have all taken Music Together classes; Kathleen loves to introduce the fun of MT to other families.

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photo Mia DeJesus

Mia Dejesus is a contemporary vocalist. She graduated from Berklee College of Music with a degree in Professional Music. Mia was thrilled when she discovered Music Together in 2007, the program combines both of her love's which are teaching children and music. Mia also has two daughters, Sofia and Viviana. 

     
Kirsten Hopkins

Kirsten has worked as a professional actor and singer for more than a decade in regional theaters around the country. She grew up in Southern California, where she attended Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, and later lived in Seattle where she got her BFA in Theater from Cornish College of the Arts. She has many years of experience as a nanny and babysitter (and has attended many Music Together classes here in NYC with kid-in-tow!) and has also worked as an acting teacher for kids. She is a member of Actors Equity Association and very happy to be joining the Music Together community. You can go to her website, www.kirstenhopkins.com, to read more about her acting career and see pictures of her being very goofy, which is one of her areas of expertise!

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photo Melissa Stylianou

In 2007 I had just moved to Brooklyn from Toronto, was a singing jazz by night and babysitting by day, and I met up with two other jazz singers who also taught Music Together classes:  Abigail Riccards and fellow MTPS teacher Seunghee Han. They both encouraged me to check it out and after watching a class, I jumped into the program at the first chance.  For almost 5 years, I have been continually challenged and deeply rewarded by my experiences teaching this musically rich and thoughtfully conceived program, supported in my journey as a teacher by my colleagues/friends and by the families who come to class.  

 

There are things that happen in every class that inspire me and leave me thankful to be working within an environment that "gets" both music and children.  It’s the best moment in each semester when I can look around the class and recognize that we have created a music-making community - a circle of learners of all ages content to let go of how music is "supposed" to sound, and throw themselves into the moment.  I wish I'd had Music Together as a child (asymmetric meters and tunes in odd tonalities would be way easier for me in my other life as a jazz singer!), but I'm glad my mother instilled in me the same message that MT does: that music-making is for everyone.