Reed Gratz is a Professor of Music and department chair at the University of La Verne. He has taught at Washington State University, University of Miami, University of Innsbruck, Utrecht Conservatory and Leiden University in the Netherlands, and Claremont McKenna College.
He is on the Advisory Board of the American Jazz Institute along with Mort Sahl, Lee Konitz, and Mark Masters. Gratz has been awarded a jazz composition grant from the NEA; a research grant in African-American music by the NEH; two Senior Fulbright Lectureships, one at the University of Innsbruck, the other, the Walt Whitman Distinguished Chair of American Culture Studies at the Leiden University; and the Excellence in Teaching Award for undergraduate faculty at the University of La Verne. He is a member of the University of La Verne Academy. Professor Gratz has received three Who’s Who Among American Teachers awards since 2002. Reed has worked with George Russell, Herb Alpert, Bruce Hornsby, John Patitucci, Barbara Morrison, Alex Acuna, Konstantin Ruchadze, and many others. He has composed music for a dozen plays. Five of his recent CDs are Below Sealevel and Piano, View From the South and The Reed Gratz Band featuring Michael O’Neill, and Quaadrille.
Professor of Music History, Kathleen Lamkin received the Ph. D. and Master of Music in Music History and Literature from Northwestern University and the Bachelor of Music Education from Baylor University.
A member of the University of La Verne faculty since 1981, she has received the university’s Excellence in Teaching Award for undergraduate faculty and in recognition of her contributions to research and scholarship, she was installed as a member of the University of La Verne Academy. Her teaching areas include music history and literature, music history and appreciation and opera. Interested in interdisciplinary courses, she has team-taught in the honors program with colleagues in disciplines outside the field of music.
Dr. Lamkin has served as chair of the music department and chair of the fine arts departments. In 1988-89 she was director of the Brethren Colleges Abroad in Marburg, Germany, a study abroad program for the University of La Verne with additional colleges and universities in its consortium in conjunction with Philipps Universität in Marburg. With her specialty in late 18th-century and early 19th-century central European music, Dr. Lamkin has been the recipient of grants for musicological studies and research from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Mellon Foundation, the Internationale Joseph Haydn Privat Stiftung, and the University of La Verne. She worked for several summers as music librarian and member of the orchestra with the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria. As faculty in musicology for the Classical Music Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria for over twenty years where she lectured on the historical and social context of the repertoire performed each summer, she also worked as the festival coordinator and performed in the festival orchestra.
Following years of performance and research of the music of Joseph Haydn, her work on the Esterházy Musicians from 1790-1809 Considered from New Sources in the Castle Forchtenstein Archives was published in 2007 as Volume 6 of the Eisenstädter Haydn Berichte. She was interviewed by BBC radio concerning her archival research. Prof. Lamkin, co-founder of the Haydn Society of California, is a charter member of the later established Haydn Society of North America. President of The College Music Society (2007-2008), she has also served as the Society’s national vice president and earlier as president of the Pacific Southern Chapter.
Pianist Dr. Grace Xia Zhao is an award-winning, international solo and chamber music artist, with credits that include performances in the United States, Italy, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland and China. Her performances have been broadcast on KUSC (Los Angeles) and KASP (Aspen) and her playing has been characterized as being, “performed at the highest level, with incredible musical sensibilities and beauty”
Dr. Zhao began her music education at the age of three in Sichuan, China. Awarded with a full-tuition scholarship to study at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music, she went on to earn a BM, MM, and Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Piano Performance, with minors in Music Education, Ethnomusicology and Electro-Acoustic Media. Upon graduation, she was inducted into the Pi Kappa Lamda National Music Honor Society for her exceptional academic achievements. Her mentors include some of the most influential artists and teachers of our time, Antoinette Perry, Yang Hanguo, Zhen Daxin, John Perry and Andrzej Jasinski to name a few. Dr. Zhao currently serves as the Artist-in-Residence at the University of La Verne.
Instructor of Music
Born and raised in Lincoln, Nebraska, Carol Stephenson moved to Los Angeles to attend the University of Southern California. While at USC, she earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Vocal Performance and a Master’s Degree in Church Music. Carol has been a featured soloist in performances of Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, Kodaly’s Te Deum, Britten’s Ceremony of Carols, Haydn’s Paukenmesse, Schubert’s Mass in G, DuBois’ Seven Last Words of Christ, Rutter’s Requiem, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and Bach’s Magnificat and St. John Passion. She has been involved in the premiere performances of the music of many composers including Scott Farthing, John McIntyre, Ruth Morris Gray and Margaret Meier. In the genre of musical theater, Carol has both starred in and directed productions of Jason Robert Brown’s The Last Five Years, was featured in Quilters in 2011 in Whittier, and was the musical director for and played a secondary character in Urinetown: The Musical in the fall of 2012 at the University of La Verne.
Most recently, Carol has become heavily involved in barbershop music as a singer, coach and director. She initiated a barbershop program at ULV in the fall of 2012 and is continuing to expand the offerings on campus. An active church musician, Carol has been on the music staff at Church of the Good Shepherd, United Methodist, in Arcadia for the past 14 years. Carol has served on the music faculties of Los Angeles Harbor College, Cypress College and Saddleback College, and Chapman University Conservatory of Music. She is currently a Music Department Associate at the University of La Verne and Adjunct Instructor at Mt. San Antonio College, where she directs several choirs, teaches group and individual voice instruction and musical theatre, and teaches vocal diction.
MFA – Voice Performance, UC Irvine
Applied Voice, Class Voice
Lance G. Kuyper
B.A., M.E. University of La Verne
Guitar, Recording Arts
Steven A. Biondo
Music Department Manager
Instructor: West African Drumming
Steve Biondo is a professional musician, drummer/percussionist and and graphic designer. He manages the Music Library and Music Office Staff and assists with studio recording and music software training.
Mr. Biondo is also the founder and director of the West African Drum Ensemble at University of La Verne. The ensemble was founded in 2001.