Hungry Monk Music TEACHERS
Guitar / Mandolin / Banjo
Co-owner of Hungry Monk Music, John holds degrees in Classical Guitar Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music and the University of Southern California. John has taught throughout the Charleston area at public and private schools, Charleston Southern University, and Creative Spark. John has several music books published by Mel Bay Publications. An active performer, John has played with The Charleston Symphony Orchestra, Na Fidleiri, and his group The Hungry Monks.
Piano / Guitar / Banjo / Lute / Irish Drum / Music For Young Children
Co-owner of Hungry Monk Music, Hazel holds degrees in Classical Guitar Performance from the University of Southern California. Hazel has taught music in SC public and private schools, at the Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, and has been Artist-in-Residence at the Cuyahoga Valley Environmental Center in Ohio, among many other teaching posts. Hazel is a certified Music For Young Children teacher. Hazel is an active performer as a soloist and with her group The Hungry Monks.
Piano / Music for Young Children
Kumi Bergman was born in Japan and started studying piano at age 4. She also learned to play the koto, a Japanese folk instrument. After moving to the United States, she sang with the Columbia Choral Society and Charleston Symphony Orchestra Choir for several years. Kumi began her involvement with the Music For Young Children program when her own daughter was 4 and enrolled in the program. Kumi teaches both MYC and private piano at Hungry Monk Music. She currently performs with the Japanese drumming group, Taiko Charleston.
Bill Carson grew up in Charleston, SC, where he teaches and makes music. Since the late 1990s he has had the privilege of working with a great diversity of artists in wide breadth of musical contexts, from underground noise rock experiments and folk musicology to formal chamber concerts and commissions for theatre, dance, and film. As a recording artist, he has released several albums of his own work on Charleston’s Shrimp Records and collaborated as an accompanist with an array of musicians. He also works as a Montessori educator and has led workshops in songwriting, singing, and experimental recording for children and teens.
Violin / Piano / Guitar / Accordion / Mandolin
Multi-instrumentalist Bob Culver began playing the piano and guitar over 35 years ago and has more than 20 years under his belt on the fiddle, mandolin and tenor guitar. He is the fiddler and keyboard player for the Hungry Monks, the guitarist for the Harrows, and has played professionally with several bands in Charleston since moving here in 1997. He has played blues, bluegrass, old-time, country, rock, surf and gospel. After 20 years of lawyering and 7 years as a newspaper reporter, he set out to pursue his passion for music by playing and teaching full time. His two daughters ran away to college with a bunch of his instruments, so he also has been making guitars. He lives with his wife, Mary, on James Island.
Piano / Voice
Loretta Haskell has trained hundreds of aspiring singers, including state and regional performance and scholarship winners. Her professional training began at Furman University and continued in Chicago at Northwestern University and in New York City where she performed numerous concerts, operas and recitals. She has maintained a private voice studio in Charleston since 1994 and has been employed by Harbor View Presbyterian Church for the last six years where she is currently serving as Organist and Chancel Choir Director, as well as the Children’s Choir Director. In Charleston she has performed as a soprano soloist with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra and the Charleston Chamber Music Society. She has also been a Lowcountry Arts Council Grant Recipient and a solo artist on the Piccolo Spoleto Festival Bishop Gadsden Series and St. Luke’s Chapel Noonday Concerts. In addition to her extensive classical singing training, she has certification from the Institute for Contemporary Commercial Music Vocal Pedagogy at Shenandoah University in Virginia in Somatic Voicework, the LoVetri Method and the Dalcroze Institute under Robert Abramson at the Juilliard School. Ms. Haskell has also served as a music critic for the Charleston Post and Courier.
Ellie Jos began playing violin at the age of 5. Her violin studies began in Charleston, South Carolina where she studied classically in addition to participating in Na Fidleiri, a Celtic fiddle group. She has a Master’s Degree in violin performance from University of Minnesota where she studied with Sally O’Reilly. Her Bachelor's Degree is from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts where she studied under Kevin Lawrence. She performed in many master classes including a chamber music master class with David Finckel, of the Emerson String Quartet. She has been the concertmistress as well as section player for the opera orchestra and symphony orchestra at UNCSA. She is trained in all three books of the Mark O’Connor Method as well as all ten books of the Suzuki Method and loves to teach.
Piano / Music for Young Children
Cindy Kearney began playing the piano and singing as a child. After receiving a BA from Florida State University, she studied jazz as a postbaccalaureate at Georgia State University. For the past 15 years, she has performed jazz, blues, and R&B throughout the Southeast. She plays the piano, Hammond B-3 Organ, and sings. Since relocating to Charleston, she balances being the mother of two young children, teaching music, and playing occasional gigs with her husband in a jazz combo.
Cellist Damian Kremer received degrees from Michigan State, Western Illinois, and Boston Universities. Damian has performed around the world as a soloist, chamber, and orchestral musician including as Principal Cellist with the Chautauqua Festival Orchestra, the Mozarteum Chamber Orchestra of Boston, and the Lansing Symphony Orchestra, and has also been a member of the New World Symphony, the Metropolitan Orchestra of Lisbon, Portugal, the Honolulu Symphony, and the Savannah Symphony. A cellist in the Charleston Symphony Orchestra since 1997, Mr. Kremer has also been on the faculty of the College of Charleston.
Asako Kremer, violinist, has performed frequently as a solo, chamber, and orchestral musician throughout the United States and Japan. Originally from Tokyo, Japan, she moved to the United States in 1996 to attend the Mannes College of Music in New York and received a Master's degree in violin performance. She moved to Charleston a year later, when she married cellist Damian Kremer, and began playing violin with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra. Asako is a certified Suzuki Violin teacher and teaches all ages and all levels.
Originally from Holbrook, New York, Mathew Masie attended the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston where he studied with Wil Hudgins of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Later he received his Master’s of Music degree from DePaul University in Chicago where he studied with Michael Green, principal percussionist of the Chicago Lyric Opera Orchestra, and Ted Atkatz, former principal percussionist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. When he is not teaching at Hungry Monk Music, Mathew keeps himself busy playing with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, the North Charleston Pops Orchestra, Charleston Stage, and The Hungry Monks.
Rio de Janeiro native Tom Noren is an active performer and educator who has made the Charleston area home since 2005. He lives in Mount Pleasant with his wife and children. Tom is the assistant choir director at The Cooper School and an Engaging Creative Minds Partner. At ECM he integrates 21st century technology such as iPads and MaKey MaKey in his music education programs, creating a synergy between the Creative Arts and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). Tom is also a sought after Apple computer specialist and video editor. As a performer he has toured and recorded with the New World Guitar Trio and the Hour Glass Ensemble. His most recent group, Porto Seguro, specializes in music from his native Brazil. He studied Classical Guitar with David Leisner at the New England Conservatory, where he received a master's degree in performance.