Hungry Monk Music TEACHERS


John Holenko

Guitar / Mandolin / Banjo  

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.


Kumi Bergman

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


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.


Loretta Haskell

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


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.


Cindy Kearney

Piano / Music for Young Children

Cindy Kearney began playing the piano and singing as a young child. After receiving a BA from FSU, she studied jazz as a post-baccalaureate at Georgia State University. For the past 25 years, she has performed jazz, blues, and R&B throughout the Atlanta area, and then here in Charleston after moving here in 2002. In addition to performing she enjoys occasionally recording, songwriting, and arranging music. She and her husband, Matt, have a group called J.A.N.E. (acronym for jazz always never ends) that serves up a funky and soulful style of music, and has one CD out called “Cool Jane”. She has performed with numerous musicians around Charleston, including singing in some of the “Women and…..”  series at the Charleston Music Hall. At Hungry Monk Music, she teaches, piano, voice and beginning guitar privately, and Music for Young Children classes. Most often she can be found teaching, performing with J.A.N.E. or spending time with her family. 


Damian Kremer


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.

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Asako Kremer


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.


Mathew Masie


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.


Tom Noren


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.