Artistic Advisor

Jonathan Carney
Jonathan Carney is the concertmaster at the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra after 12 seasons in the same position with London’s Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Born in New Jersey, Mr. Carney hails from a musical family with all six members having graduated from The Juilliard School. After completing his studies with Ivan Galamian and Christine Dethier, he was awarded a Leverhulme Fellowship to continue his studies in London at the Royal College of Music.

After enjoying critically acclaimed international tours as both concertmaster and soloist with numerous ensembles, Mr. Carney was invited by Vladimir Ashkenazy to become concertmaster of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in 1991. He was also appointed concertmaster of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra in 1994 and the Basque National Orchestra in 1996. Recent solo performances have included concertos by Bruch, Korngold, Khatchaturian, Sibelius, Nielsen, the Brahms Double Concerto and Vaughan Williams’ The Lark Ascending, which was featured as a live BBC broadcast from London’s Barbican Hall. He has made a number of recordings, including concertos by Mozart, Vivaldi and Nielsen, sonatas by Brahms, Beethoven and Franck, and a disc of virtuoso works of by Sarasate and Kreisler with his mother Gloria Carney as pianist. New releases include Beethoven’s Archduke and Ghost trios, the cello quintet of Schubert and a Dvorak disc with the Terzetto and four Romantic pieces for violin.

Mr. Carney is passionate about music education and currently serves as Artistic Advisor for the Maryland Classic Youth Orchestras. He is also an artist in residence at the Baltimore School for the Arts, one of the country’s premier high schools, and also serves on its Board of Directors.

Artistic Director

Kristofer Sanz, Philharmonic Conductor
KRISTOFER SANZ has matured as a vibrant and talented conductor whose energy and fervor for music have allowed him to achieve a passionate, mature and musical sound with any ensemble he has conducted. Mr. Sanz recently has been praised for his modern and adventurous interpretations, as well as his contemporary and interactive concert presentations. He is the Artistic Director and Philharmonic conductor for the Maryland Classic Youth Orchestras program that rehearses and performs at The Music Center at Strathmore in North Bethesda, Maryland. Under Mr. Sanz’s baton the Philharmonic is quickly becoming known for their highly musical, moving, and nuanced interpretations of a wide range of works from all genres—including orchestral works, dance, and opera. Mr. Sanz strongly believes in exposing orchestras and audiences to new works by living composers while programming works from the time honored classical canon. In May 2014 he performed the US premiere of Ilan Eshkeri’s Stardust Suite. In March 2016 he conducted the Philharmonic in his own arrangement of The Ring of the Nibelung by Wagner. Teaming up with narrator, Greg Jukes, the Philharmonic presented a 45-minute orchestral journey—with narration—that encompassed themes from Wagner’s Ring Cycle. This special arrangement was conceived to honor MCYO’s seventieth birthday celebration. In March 2017, Kristofer presented the DC premier of Tolga Kashif’s lush and decadent Queen Symphony, an orchestral homage to Freddie Mercury and QUEEN for large orchestra and choir. In 2019 Mr. Sanz presented the US Premier of Pablo Manavello’s orchestral suite “El Camino de Santiago llega a ti,” a passionate and expressive work describing the pilgrimage of “The Way of Saint James.” In 2019, Mr. Sanz also worked with Black Violin on their concert tour combining a 90 piece classical orchestra with Hip Hop violin/viola, vocals, and DJ.

Mr. Sanz is a founding member and Music Director / Conductor for Young Artists of America (YAA) at Strathmore, a non-profit organization founded to provide aspiring and talented young artists with exceptional opportunities to perform with—and be mentored by—professional artists and educators in fully orchestrated performances. In March 2017, Kristofer worked with Academy Award winning lyricist Tim Rice and Broadway star Adam Pascale to present a world premier concert “The Circle of Life:” The Songs of Tim Rice. In March 2016 he worked with Broadway composer, Stephen Schwartz, and YAA to present his orchestrated version of Children of Eden at Strathmore. In March 2014 Mr. Sanz worked side by side with three-time Tony Award-winning composer, Jason Robert Brown, to present his fully orchestrated song cycle Songs for a New World. YAA is an Affiliate of Strathmore, and resides at The Music Center at Strathmore.


Katherine Smolen, Future Stars/Kamerata! Conductor
Katherine Smolen is a passionate educator and an active violinist in the DC/MD/VA/DE region who has performed on stages throughout the United States and Europe. A graduate of the University of Maryland, Katherine earned a Bachelor of Music Education as well as a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance under the study of Irina Muresanu, Kimberly Fisher, and Oleg Ryltako. Ms. Smolen has since worked in many different settings including teaching violin and viola privately, coaching chamber ensembles, and rehearsing full ensembles. This year marks Ms. Smolen’s third season with MCYO. Ms. Smolen is currently completing a Master of Music Education at the University of Michigan and is the Director of Orchestras at Loiederman Middle School for the Performing Arts in Silver Spring, MD.

Jorge Orozco, Chamber Strings/Preparatory Strings Conductor
Jorge Orozco is a faculty member at the Levine School of Music and the Georgetown Visitation School. This is Mr. Orozco’s fourth season as conductor of Chamber Strings. Under his tutelage, Chamber Strings performed at the Kennedy Center Haydn Festival in 2009 and made its debut at Carnegie Hall in 2011. Mr. Orozco is also the conductor of MCYO newest ensemble: Preparatory Strings. Mr. Orozco is an active chamber music performer with pianist Carlos Rodríguez and violist Maria Montaño. Mr. Orozco is also the concertmaster of the Metropolitan Orchestra at Montgomery College. Mr. Orozco holds a Master’s Degree in Music Performance from the University of Southern Mississippi and a Bachelor Degree in music performance from the Instituto Superior de Artes, Havana, Cuba. Mr. Orozco has participated in numerous Festivals and workshops including the Texas Music Festival, Victoria Bach Festival, Havana Contemporary Music Festival, Vicksburg Chamber Music Festival, the Sterling-Delay Seminar, and the Juilliard Conducting Workshop.

MaryAnn Poling, Young Artists Conductor
MaryAnn Fasold Poling is excited to be in her sixth year with MCYO. Mary earned B.S. degrees in both Music Education and Fine Arts from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where she held the Principal chair in all major ensembles and won the Frank Gorell competition. Attending the Peabody Institute of Music on a full scholarship and playing Principal in all graduate ensembles, she earned an M.M. in Oboe Performance under the tutelage of Sara Watkins, with whom she also pursued doctoral studies until Ms. Watkins’ untimely death in 1997.

Ms. Poling performed in the American Waterways Wind Orchestra and in both the American and Italian Spoleto festivals; she has performed professionally in fifteen different countries. Locally she has performed with the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra, the Annapolis Opera, the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, the Frederick Symphony, the Maryland Lyric Opera and the Melos Sinfonia.

Last year marked Ms. Poling’s fifteenth year as the conductor of the intermediate orchestra for the Baltimore Symphony Youth Orchestras (formerly the Greater Baltimore Youth Orchestra Association), which she joined after teaching for nine years in the Harford County Public Schools. Mary is frequently called on by school systems in several Maryland counties as an adjudicator and guest conductor. She has a substantial private studio, teaches oboe at Goucher College, and performs as a freelance musician in the Baltimore-Washington area. Mary also leads the music ministry at New Hope Community Church in Pikesville. She lives outside of Baltimore with her husband and two daughters, both of whom aspire to careers in the arts.

Julie Savignon, Chamber Ensemble Director
Violinist Julie Savignon has established herself as an active soloist, chamber musician, orchestral player and teacher. Her performances have taken her to such distinguished venues as Carnegie Hall, the Smithsonian in Washington D.C, the Kennedy Center, Salle Cortot in Paris and the Muza Kawasaki Symphony Hall in Tokyo. Ms. Savignon recently traveled to Paris where she performed in recital and to critical acclaim at the famed Salle Cortot.
Equally comfortable in the orchestral world, Ms. Savignon is currently a regular substitute player with the Baltimore Symphony and the National Symphony Orchestra. She has toured extensively with the NSO, and was invited to participate in the National Symphony’s most recent South American tour. Previously, Ms Savignon was appointed Assistant Principal Second Violin of the Charlotte Symphony. Ms. Savignon also performs with the Washington Concert Opera, Master Chorale of Washington at the Kennedy Center, as well as the National Cathedral Choral Society. She is a member of the North Eastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic and has performed with the Reading, Lancaster and Delaware Symphonies and the Smithsonian Chamber Players. She has participated in several recordings with the Houston Symphony Orchestra, Christoph Eschenbach conducting, while serving as a substitute player at the invitation of Mr. Eschenbach. Ms Savignon toured Asia with the New York Symphonic Ensemble in July 2007.
As a chamber musician Ms Savignon has collaborated with such artists as Kenneth Goldsmith, Norman Fischer, Csaba Erdely, Anne Epperson, and Brian Connelly, among others. She has participated in the acclaimed Foothills Chamber Music Festival in Winston-Salem where she took part in a concert in homage to the late African-American composer Undine Smith Moore. She is currently working on a recording of works by Bartok, Strauss and Shostakovich with the Smithsonian Chamber Players.
Ms Savignon served on the faculties of both Penn State University and Juniata College in Pennsylvania, where she also directed the string ensembles. Ms. Savignon’s students can be found among the ranks of some of this countries’ finest music institutions. In addition, she has maintained a private studio for the past 8 years. Ms. Savignon studied in France, at the renowned Conservatoire National in Dijon, where she was awarded The Medaille D’or by unanimous vote. While in Europe, Ms Savignon was profiled on several occasions by National French television and featured in live performances and interviews. She completed her academic Baccalaureate Degree in France with high honors and then joined famed violinist Josef Gingold’s studio at Indiana University. She then completed both the Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in violin performance at Rice University under the tutelage of Sergiu Luca and Kathleen Winkler.
Ms. Savignon plays a fine Enrico Rocca violin and a Eugene Sartory bow, considered to be one of his finest examples.

Simeone Tartaglione, Symphony Conductor
Schooled in the European tradition covering conducting, composition and opera Simeone Tartaglione has become a versatile musician with a wide knowledge of and passion for the many areas of this art. He studied composition and conducting in Rome at the SantaCecilia Conservatory and piano performance at the Bellini Institute. In addition to his various degrees, he earned a Laurea as Doctor in Italian Literature and Musicology Magna cum Laude, and is a published author.

He serves as Associate Conductor of the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra, Music Director of the Delaware Youth Symphony Orchestra, Orchestral Department Head and piano instructor at the Music School of Delaware, and Music Director of the Newark (DE) Symphony Orchestra since 2010, during which time, this orchestra’s audience increased by 63%.

Tartaglione has had extensive conducting experience in symphonic and operatic repertoire with orchestras from Italy, the United States, Spain, Russia, Romania, Mexico, Ukraine and Bulgaria. He has won numerous competitions and prizes. In Rome he served as the Artistic Director of the Theatre Fusillo and of the MUSA Association for five years.

After winning an audition at the University of Denver he moved there in 2005. At the same university he became Adjunct Professor of Conducting while earning an Artist Diploma. He worked as guest conductor, vocal coach, pianist and harpsichord player with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra’s Education and Outreach Programs, Central City Opera, Marilyn Horne Foundation, Denver Young Artists Orchestra, Colorado Youth Symphony Orchestra, Augustana Musica Sacra Orchestra, and Broadway Music School. He also served as cover conductor for the Colorado Symphony on a number of occasions.

Invited by Gustav Meier in 2006, Tartaglione moved to Baltimore where he continued conducting studies at the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University earning a Graduate Performing Diploma in 2009 with a conducting assistantship. From 2008 to 2010 he served as Adjunct Faculty for the Peabody Opera Department, coaching and conducting several performances. Simeone has recorded several CDs and DVDs as conductor and as pianist in duo with his wife, violinist Alessandra Cuffaro, the first Italian woman who performed all the 24 Paganini’s Capricci in one concert.

Artistic Director Emerita
Olivia Gutoff

Conductor Emerita
Ruth Albright

Assistant Conductors
Faith Foster
Noel Nascimento

Small Ensemble Directors

Harp Ensemble Director
Monika Vasey Rhodes

Clarinet Choir Director

Lori Fowser

Senior/Junior Flute Choir Director

Carolyn Oh

Percussion Ensemble Director

Christopher Barrick

Orchestra Coaches

Seth Castleton, Cello

Jennifer Lee, Violin

Elizabeth Peterson, Cello

Talya Schenk, Viola

Katherine Smolen, Violin

Evelyn Song, Violin