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 Leah Celebi

Leah came to Music Together by way of her two sons Evren and Milo, and fell in love with the program.  She quickly realized that Music Together was an amazing way to introduce young children, in a developmentally appropriate way, to the art of making music.  She is thrilled to share her love of music with children and their families and is truly excited to bring this fantastic experience to the city of Detroit!

Leah studied viola and piano at the Chicago College of Performing Arts and received a Bachelors in Viola Performance in 2003.  In 2006, she received a Masters in Viola Performance from the University of California Santa Barbara Studying with internationally-renowned soloist and pedagogue Helen Callus.  While in Santa Barbara she performed with the Santa Barbara Symphony, Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra and the Irish band, Dannsair.

As a certified Suzuki teacher, she joined the faculty at Suzuki Royal Oak Institute of Music in 2008 where she teaches both viola and violin. Although a classically trained musician, Leah can be heard performing live and in the studio in a variety of genres as a member of the critically acclaimed world jazz ensemble Musique Noire.  She has also performed behind nationally renowned performers such as Aretha Franklin, Three Mo' Tenors, Marcus Belgrave and many more.

     
photo Giles

D. Giles Simmer is a lyric soprano based in Detroit, Michigan. She began singing growing up in Atlanta, GA and during her teen years was privileged to sing under such conductors as Paul Salamunovich, Raymond Chenault, James Oliverio and Robert Spano at multiple venues in the metro-Atlanta area. It was as a result of these opportunities that she found her true love and joy in vocal performance. Simmer earned a B.A. in Music from Hillsdale College where she was a recipient of the Howard Music Scholarship and L.A. Weichselfelder Scholarship, in addition to maintaining an active membership in Sigma Alpha Iota. She currently studies with Dr. Karen Kness at Western Michigan University, where she recently completed her M.M. in Vocal Performance. Simmer has been recognized as a semi-finalist or winner in several national competitions including the William C. Byrd Competition, the Orpheus National Music Competitions, the Opera Maya Papaya Playa Competition and NATS competitions. She has performed with Opera Grand Rapids, Arbor Opera Theatre, Comic Opera Guild, and Michigan Opera Theatre and has been a staff singer at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Detroit since 2009.

     
photo Karen

Karen “Bosco” Vesprini is a Detroit based singer, dancer, and actress, who has performed across the globe. She took on a love for the “Arts”, as a little girl, and always had a passion for performing.  Karen has performed  several well-known ensembles including s Detroit Women and Black Bottom Collective, which has performance credits including opening for National Recording artists, Nappy Roots, Talib Kwali, DJ Clue, Sekou Sundiata, Angelique Kedou, Dwele, Kem and Will Downing. 

 Karen and her husband Dr. Frank Vesprini, (owner of Vesprini Chiropractic Life Center, who also plays guitar and bass), founded the band Karen Bosco and the People Next Door. They have performed around the Metro Detroit area and are currently working on their first studio album. They also perform with the Loritos Band, a spanish family band for kids, and is on the band’s debut album “Lunatino”. Karen and her husband are raising and homeschooling four little musicians, Isabella, Bennett, Eva-Sarai, and Rocco.

Karen was introduced to the Music Together program by her friend and Motor City Music Together Director, Leah Celebi. After taking her son to classes and gaining a deep appreciation for the program, Karen decided to become a Music Together teacher. “Music Together has given me a deeper understanding of music education, and the incredible impact that music has on children. Not only that, but it has re-enforced my feelings of how needed and important music is for us ALL.”

 

     
photo Emily Schienke

Emily Schienke was a music therapy major and has a BMT from Eastern Michigan University where her major instrument was voice. She performed with EMU’s university choir in Carnegie Hall in NY City. She also plays guitar and some percussion instruments and played flute in grade school and high school marching band. She has worked as a music therapist for the past 8 years working with children and young adults with varying disabilities including autism, Downs Syndrome, Williams Syndrome, and other types of cognitive, speech, and motor delays. She has also taught piano lessons to typically developing children as well as children with special needs. Emily is presently doing part time music therapy work, and is a mother to 3 wonderful little girls, and is looking forward to teaching Music Together classes. Emily is a registered Music Together teacher. As Emily says in her own words, “I have experienced the enjoyment and powerful bond that music can bring to a family in my own home and in the homes of many of the children I have worked with. These experiences led me to the Music Together curriculum as a way to teach and further be involved in family music making.”

     
photo Christine

In addition to teaching Music Together, Christine is a certified K-12 music educator in Michigan and has 8 years experience teaching Grades K-6 music.  She also holds a BMus degree in Music Education and a MM Degree in Vocal Pedagogy from Oakland University.   While at OU, Christine had the opportunity to perform on stage in theatre and opera and also with The Rolling Stones at Comerica Park during their 2015 tour with the Oakland Chorale (while 7 months pregnant!). 

Christine is also a Music Together mom, attending classes with her daughter since she was 8 months old.  “Music Together has been a wonderful experience for my daughter and I.  Seeing her develop through the classes, not only musically but also with language and motor development, has been nothing short of amazing.  Music Together taught me the importance of early childhood music and I am forever grateful for the knowledge and experiences.  I am so excited to share this music and program with other children and families.”

     
photo Suzette
Suzette is a violinist, singer, actress, and life-long music-maker. She was born and raised in Metro Detroit and holds a BM in Music Education from the University of Michigan. She also has a love for the theater and is active, locally, both on-stage and as a pit musician.
 
Suzette discovered Music Together when she began attending classes with her son and has been in love with the program ever since. She was thrilled to do her Music Together teacher training with the co-founder of Music Together, Lili Levinowitz, whose passion for and extensive research into music and the young child were incredibly inspiring. Suzette is excited to be able to share that passion with Music Together families as they experience the joy of music-making with their own children!
     
photo Matthew

Matthew began as a Music Together Papa in a Motor City Music Together class when his daughter was 6 months old. He was very inspired by the program, the rich diversity of music it offered, and its focus on both parents as well as children. He decided to take the Teacher Training class and is excited to now be teaching for our center! Matthew is warm and gentle with kids and parents alike, and his excitement to be involved with musical development shows. The son of educators, Matthew is also a community college teacher, an audio engineer, and has spent almost thirty years as a performing, recording, and touring drummer. Of all his experience in education and music, Music Together is Matthew's favorite so far, and he can't wait to see you in class!

     
photo Sarah Kilts

Sarah Kilts is a lifelong music maker and the mother of two children. Sarah is a singer and bass player, and released multiple albums with her indie rock band. She performed in venues across the US and Canada. To her great surprise and delight, Sarah has spent the last twelve years teaching music in both public and private schools. Sarah’s first teaching job came about rather by chance. Her oldest child’s elementary school was in desperate need of a general music teacher the week before classes were scheduled to start. What she thought was going to be a temporary position (until they found a REAL teacher!) turned into a most joyful career. Sarah taught 425 k-5 students a week for two years in a public school in California. In the midst of this, she was introduced to Music Together, as the gold standard of Early Childhood music and movement classes. She completed her Music Together Teacher training in 2010, and immediately saw how it transformed her classroom. At the time, she lived in a city with one of the largest, well established Music Together Centers in the US. It became apparent that her students who had attended Music Together classes when they were younger were much more engaged, and had a pronounced level of music competence. The difference was so profound, that she decided to dedicate herself to early childhood music education. Sarah founded her own Music Together Center (Maple Leaf Music Together) in Toronto, Canada, and was the Director and Registered Teacher there from 2012-2019. During that time, she made music with thousands of students and their families. After selling the studio, she moved to Ann Arbor with her family in the fall of 2019. She is currently employed as a Family Group Teacher in an Infant room at Gretchen’s House — where she is in her “happy place” singing and snuggling with babies.