Noteworthy News!

Spotlight on Students


This page spotlights some of the vocal achievements of my students.


View previous "Students of the Week"



2011-12 Students' Vocal Achievements




The Spring Adult Recital was held Tuesday, June 26, at the Woman's Club of Arlington, with George Peachey, pianist.
Fourteen students performed; Donna Hamilton’s children – Christopher and Laura, left – performed with her.


More photos here >









Adam Heins is at the Interlochen Summer Arts Camp music program in Interlochen, Michigan, for his sixth summer. He is majoring in piano and has been chosen as the principal pianist for The World Youth Symphony Orchestra. Also while at Interlochen, he is a member of The World Youth Honor Choir. Adam is a rising junior at Sidwell Friends School.












Jamie Joeyen Waldorf (left) and Kathryn Bailey attended the
Young Artists America 2012 Summer Institute for Singers and Instrumentalists, June 18-July 7, at the Performing Arts Center at Sandy Spring Friends School in Sandy Spring, Maryland. Peggy attended the July 6 performance. Jamie and Kathryn are rising juniors at Langley High School. Learn more:












Maggie Dunlap (above, right) is attending the Interlochen Summer Arts Camp music program in Interlochen, Michigan. She is participating in the High School Orchestra and Winds Ensemble program. Maggie, who is home schooled, lives in Great Falls and has studied with Peggy for over two years. 















Ariana Kruszewski won the 2012 Cappies award for Female Vocalist for her performance in West Side Story at South Lakes High School. She received the award at the Cappies (Critics and Awards Program) gala, held June 10 at the Kennedy Center.  Ariana has recently graduated from South Lakes and will attend American University in the fall as a musical theatre major.











Ariana Kruszewski has been nominated as one of five best female vocalists in the Washington Metro Area for her role in West Side Story The winners will be announced at The Cappies of the National Capital Area award ceremony on June 10 at the Kennedy Center. Ariana is a senior at South Lakes High School in Reston. Congratulations, Ariana!













Grant Brown, Bass I, Isabel Hefner, Alto l, and Mia Engelhardt, Alto 1  - Peggy’s students from Langley H.S. - performed in Virginia’s All-State Choir on April 28 at Glass High School in Lynchburg, Va.



Peggy with Kate Lyn Broom, who starred as Kim MacAfee
in the McLean First Ward’s Production of Bye Bye Birdie on
April 27-28 at the LDS Church of McLean.



















Congratulations to David Liu, baritone, a freshman at Oakton H.S., who placed first in the Beginning Male High School Category at the National Association of Teachers of Singing Regional event, held at the University of Maryland on April 14, 2012. George Peachey was pianist.

















The Northern Virginia Music Teachers Association Voice Achievements Event was held on Saturday, April 21, 2012, at the Woman’s Club of Arlington.  Ten of Peggy’s students participated.


DIVISION I (beginning high school students):  Allie Graham, Adam Heins, Madeleine Chalk, and Kathryn Bailey.  Kathryn, a sophomore at Langley School, won second place.



DIVISION II (advanced high school students):  Isabel Hefner and Camille Dotson. Isabel, a senior at Langley High School, received honorable mention. 


DIVISION III (adults):  Mary Anne Kolb, Syrina Gudnitz, and Cindy Leaf.  Syrina placed second and Cindy and Mary Ann received honorable mentions.


Joel Cline, an adult student, sang in the “Comment Only” category.







Thank you to all of my students who attended the workshops on Sunday, March 18, at McNulty Studio. Thanks also to
George Peachey for his piano accompaniment.











Nancy Pruett performed the role of Catherine Carbone in three performances of Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge at McLean H.S.  This was McLean’s Cappie play. Nancy is a sophomore at McLean and has studied with Peggy for over two years.















Congratulations to all 19 of my teen and adult students who participated in the Virginia National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) student auditions last weekend.

David Liu (freshman, Oakton HS) received first place in his category, Freshman Men. He sang beautifully at the honors recital, which was held late in the afternoon Saturday! 

Madeleine Chalk (sophomore, Langley HS) was second-place winner in her Beginning High School Women category. 

Kathryn Bailey (sophomore, Langley HS) was third-place winner in her Advanced Freshmen/Sophomore High School Women Category.


Ariana Kruszewski (senior, South Lakes HS) was second-place winner in her Advanced High School Women Musical Theatre category. 


All four of these students are eligible to participate in the NATS Regional Auditions at the University of Maryland on April 14. 

Other recognitions:

Isabel Hefner (senior, Langley HS) was listed as #3 in Advanced Junior/Senior High School Women category.

Graham Schmidt was listed as the third place singer in Beginning Junior/Senior High School Male category.

Syrina Gudnitz was listed as #3 in the Continuing Education Female category.

Congratulations to you all! Thanks also to Gillian Cookson and Andrew Kraus for their beautiful playing!


Christina Taylor Gibson studied voice with Peggy during her high school years at McLean High School. She attended the College of William and Mary and the University of Maryland, where she received her DMA in musicology.  Christina now is a musicologist who specializes in the music of Carlos Chāvez. She is a clinical assistant professor at The Catholic University of America, and on January 29 she presented a lecture at the Mexican Cultural Institute in Northwest Washington, D.C., about the music of Chāvez and Revueltas, another Latin American composer.

Learn more here (CUA Music Notes from the Benjamin T. Rome School of Music…Spring 2012) >

Megan Michaels, senior at Woodgrove High School in Round Hill, Virginia, was selected for the Loudoun County Sight-Singing Choir and for District Honors Choir.

Congratulations to all of my students who auditioned and were selected for their All-District choirs!


DISTRICT XII Women's Choir


From Langley H.S.

Jamie Joeyen-Waldorf – Sop1
Madeleine Chalk  – Sop2
Vanessa Strahan  – Sop2
Kathryn Bailey – Alto1


From McLean H.S. – Nancy Pruett – Sop1




From Langley H.S.
Mia Engelhardt – Alto1
Isabel Hefner – Alto1
Emily Gurian – Alto2
Shomin Mathur – Tenor1


From Oakton H.S. – David Liu – Bass1

From Herndon H.S. – Robin Falci – Sop1 Alternate

From South Lakes H.S. – Ariana Kruszewski – Sop1 Alternate




From Paul VI H.S. Rachelle Robertello – Sop2
From Robinson H.S. Citlali Herrera – Alto1 Alternate



Performing in last weekend’s Langley High School Production of “Grease” were Peggy’s students, Vanessa Strahan (left), who played Josephine Wingington, and Jamie Joeyen-Waldorf (right), who played Jenny Goodman. Vanessa and Jamie are both sophomores at Langley, where they are active in the theatre and music departments.














McLean Idol

The first McLean Idol Competition was held at McLean H.S. on Oct. 27 and 28, with finals held on Oct. 29. Three of Peggy’s students were selected for the final round (from left to right): Nancy Pruett, Cara Schaumburg, and Kate Lyn Broom. Nancy Pruett placed third in the competition.





Maggie Dunlap, a home-schooled tenth grader, has written an article about the composer, Nino Rota, that will be included in the program notes for the upcoming concert of the Washington Metropolitan Youth Orchestra.  Maggie, who plays the viola in this orchestra, was Student of the Week for the week of September 26. Read Maggie's article here >

2011 VMEA Senior Honors Choir


Congratulations to Mia Englehardt and Isabel Hefner from Langley High School, who were selected for the 2011 VMEA Senior Honors Choir. They auditioned at Longwood University on October 1 and will participate in the Honors Choir event and concert during the VMEA Conference in Norfolk this November.


View 2010-11 Archive here >


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2011-12 Students of the Week


This recognition is based on how well a student has learned the music assigned for the week.


Week of May 6, 2012

Kelsey, who is a sophomore at H.B. Woodlawn High School in Arlington, has studied voice with Peggy for over a year.  During this time she has sung in two student workshops, and last summer she performed at the Chesterbrook Retirement Home. Kelsey sings in the select all women’s choir and in the full choir at H.B. Woodlawn.  She has attended this school since the 6th grade. For the past years Kelsey has played soccer with the Falcoln Club Team. Over the Christmas holidays, Kelsey and her family travelled to India to see relatives. Keep up the good work!

Week of April 23, 2012

Citlali is a junior at Robinson Middle School where she sings with the select woman’s choir. She was chosen to sing in the All District Choir this year, and she also participated in NATS at George Mason University in March. Citlali has studied voice since the seventh grade but only with Peggy since last June. She has also studied piano for several years. Last year Citlali played JV field hockey for Robinson. She keeps busy by studying hard and working at Baskin Robbins at the Twinbrooke Shopping Center. Keep up the good work!

Week of April 9, 2012

Allie, who is a freshman at the Potomac School in McLean, has studied voice for over two years. She has participated in numerous voice recitals and workshops. Allie attended the Langley School and performed leading roles in many of the school’s plays. This fall she played JV field hockey at Potomac and now she is a “starting” member of the JV lacrosse team. Children living in orphanages rarely have many childhood keepsakes. Allie was one of sixteen Potomac School students selected to honor a group of these children by painting their portraits as part of the nationwide “memory project.” The children are Peruvian and will receive their paintings in June. Next year Allie will sing in chorus and she also hopes to sing in a school a cappella group. She has also enjoyed being a counselor at the Potomac School’s summer program. Keep up the good work!

Week of March 19-23, 2012

Meabhe, a senior at Flint Hill School, has attended this school for six years.  She has performed with Major Minor, the school’s a cappella group, sung in a school talent school, and participated in All District Choir. Meabhe has studied piano for 13 years.

She began voice lessons over two years ago and during this time, she has participated in the Northern Va. Music Teachers Voice Achievements Event, National Association of Teachers of Singing Virginia auditions, and in several recitals and workshops.

At Flint Hill, Meabhe has been a leader of the service club and a peer counselor. She hopes to study equine veterinary medicine.

Best wishes!


Week of March 12-16, 2012


Jaimie Mulligan, who is a senior at Langley High School, has studied voice for almost two years and during this time she has sung in two retirement center recitals, three voice recitals and several voice workshops. Twice she has participated in the NATS state auditions and received excellent marks.

Not only is Jaimie a singer, but she also plays flute and piccolo. This year she has been the head assistant director for the Langley band program. In addition, Jaimie is an athlete who is a graduated swimmer from the Langley High School swim team.

Jaimie has already been accepted to James Madison University for the fall 2012 freshman class.

Congratulations to this very versatile student!!


Week of February 27, 2012

Megan Michaels is a senior at Woodgrove High School in Loudoun County and she will be in the school’s first graduating class this June.  At Woodgrove, Megan has been a member of the advanced women’s choir.  She has been selected for the All-District Choir the past two years, and last spring she performed a lead role in the school’s production of Into the Woods. Meagan has studied voice with Peggy for 1½ years and during this time she has participated in one student voice workshop and two recitals.  She also participated in the NATS Auditions last spring and will again perform at NATS next week at George Mason University. Over the summer, Megan attended the Crittenden Opera Workshop at the Landon School.  At the end of the opera session, she performed in an operatic “scenes” recital. Megan has will perform the part of the minstral in the school’s spring production of Once Upon a Mattress. In college, Megan hopes to major in music education. Congratulations!!

February 20, 2012

Nancy Pruett is a sophomore at McLean High School where she is active in Madrigals, Women’s Chorus and theater. She has sung in the All District Chorus for the last two years. Last spring, Nancy performed as Little Red Riding Hood in McLean’s performance of Into the Woods.  She is looking forward to returning to the Arena Stage Musical Theater Training Company this summer. Currently, Nancy is preparing the part of Catherine in Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge, as an understudy. Come see her on March 22, 25 (matinee) and 28 at McLean High School’s black box theater. Congratulations!!

February 12, 2012

Emily is a junior at Langley High School and she keeps very busy as a member of the dance team and a singer in the concert and chamber choirs. She will travel to Orlando, Florida, this spring to compete in the dance team national competition. She was also a gymnast for 13 years. Because of her outstanding academic and extracurricular record, she was nominated to be a Governor’s School student. Two weeks ago she performed for the adjudicators at Mary Washington University. Emily has studied voice for one year and during this time she has performed in two voice recitals, two student workshops, and in a program at a local retirement home. Over the weekend she performed in the All-District Mixed Choir. She has appeared in the musical Godspell at the Bucks Rock Performing Arts Camp. Emily loves to travel and last year she traveled to Puerto Rico and to Scotland. This spring she will travel with the Langley choirs to Europe.

February 6, 2012

Victoria is a senior at the Madeira School in Great Falls, Va. She has studied voice with Peggy since the 8th grade and she has performed in numerous recitals, workshops and competitions. Besides studying voice, Victoria plays the trombone in her school’s orchestra.  She hopes very much to play in a “pep band” or marching band in college! Victoria attends the Trinity Methodist Church in Mclean and has sung solos for their church services, most recently on Christmas Eve. She also finds time to participate in a year -round soccer league and somehow she is always ready to sing at 9:30 on Saturday mornings!!

January 23, 2012

Kimiya will graduate from Langley High School this June, where she has been concert master of the school orchestra, a member of the honor society and the model U.N., among other activities. Kimiya began voice lessons with Peggy in 8th grade, and she has participated in numerous voice workshops and student recitals.  Kimiya also placed second in the beginning high school voice competition sponsored by the Northern Virginia Music Teachers Association in 2010.  Her vocal range has increased widely in the last years and she is able to sing a high g above “high c” — quite amazing! She has studied violin for 13 years and she intends to continue her musical activities in college. Kimiya is a member of the Baha’i faith. Congratulations!!


Week of January 16, 2012

Rachelle has studied voice for over two years and during this time she has participated in many student workshops and in at least five student recitals. Even after recovering from a serious ankle operation at thanksgiving, Rachelle sang in our recent recital holding crutches.Rachelle is a senior at Paul VI where she sings in the chamber choir and for the past four years, she has been selected to sing in the All District Choir.Rachelle has been a cheerleader in grades 9 until the present. The Paul VI team participated in the UCA Nationals last year. She will continue to cheer and participate in the choirs at Canisius College this fall.

January 9, 2012

Jamie is a sophomore at Langley High School, where she sings with the chorus. She is an active member of the drama department. Currently she serves as the co-lead Cappies critic for her school’s Cappies team as part of the Cappies Critics and Awards Program for High School Theater. Last year, Jamie was pleased to win the 2011 Rising Critic Award. She has performed in numerous productions in both school and community productions, including Grease, The Wizard of Oz, Beauty and the Beast, and Treasure Island. She is excited to be in the cast of the Young Artists of America’s production of The Phantom of the Opera, which will make its DC Metro area premiere on March 16 and 17, 2012. Over the summer, Jamie attended the FCPS Institute for the Arts and US Performing Arts’ musical theater intensive course at Georgetown University. Jamie loves performing and singing for others! Congratulations!


November 28, 2011

Madeleine is a sophomore at Langley High School, where she sings with the Langley advanced mixed and women’s chamber choirs.  She is looking forward to performing at the Madrigal Feastes on December 9 and 10. Madeleine began voice lessons with Peggy in June. She has performed at one student workshop and she will sing at the holiday recital on Dec. 3.  She also plans to sing at the National Association of Teachers of Singing auditions in March 2012. While a student at Cooper Middle School, Madeleine was president of the school drama club and she appeared in all of her school musical productions, including "Seussical Jr.” as The Cat in the Hat. Madeleine is a member of the professional theatre company, Studio Rep, at the McLean Alden Theatre. Congratulations to Madeleine!


Week of November 21, 2011


Mia Engelhardt (left) and Isabel Hefner are both seniors at Langley High School, where they sing with the madrigals. From a rigorous audition procedure held in October at Longwood University, they were both selected to sing in the 2011 Virginia Music Educators Association Honors Choir. Eleven students from Langley High School were chosen. Both Mia and Isabel sang alto and were awarded second place for all the senior altos who auditioned in September. Both Mia and Isabel have studied voice with Peggy for two years and they have sung at the NATS auditions and in several student recitals. The honors choir performance was held in Norfolk on November 17 at the VMEA Conference. Congratulations to both Isabel and Mia!!


November 14, 2011

Kathryn, who is a sophomore at Langley High School, sings in the women’s chamber choir and in the concert choir. She has studied voice for a year and has participated in two voice recitals and in several voice workshops. She also sang at NATS at James Madison University last March. Kathryn placed first in the All District Honors choir auditions for the alto section of the women’s choir. Kathryn not only sings but she also studied piano for 7 years and violin for five years. She is an excellent musician. For the last few summers, Kathryn has attended the Ballibay Performing Arts Camp in Pennsylvania. Congratulations on your diligence and hard work!


November 7, 2011

Camille, who is a junior, is home schooled. She lives in Sterling, Va., and with other home schoolers, she takes classes in Reston. Camille has studied piano since she was five years old and she currently studies privately with Phyllis Vickers in Great Falls. She began voice lessons in June. In August, Camille performed two solos at the Chesterbrook Residences in Mclean. This young singer is an active member at Harvest Christian Fellowship Church in Reston, where she has soloed several times at church services. She sang in last week’s student workshop and she will sing her favorite Christmas solo, "O Holy Night," at the holiday voice recital on December 3. Camille also works at Chick-Fil-A at Sugarland Crossing, and last year she was a candy striper at Arlington Hospital. Congratulations on your diligence and hard work!


October 23, 2011

Sarah Delcoco is an 8th grader at Langston Hughes Middle School, where she sings in the choir. She began voice lessons with Peggy in September and she loves to sing and play soccer! Sarah performed the role of “Rosie” in the school’s production of Bye Bye Birdie last year and she hopes to be able to perform in this year’s musical as well. For the past 5 summers, Sarah has studied acting at YAT, the Young Actors Theatre. Sarah has also played the piano for four years. Congratulations on your diligence and hard work!




Week of October 17, 2011

Adam Heins is 15 years old and in the tenth grade at Sidwell Friends School, where he sings in the audition-only Chamber Chorus.  He also started a co-ed a cappella group, Tempo Tantrum, for which he does all of the musical arrangements.  This fall Adam began voice lessons with Peggy.For the past five summers, he has attended Interlochen Arts Camp in Michigan where he majored in piano and violin, and sang in the choir.  This past summer, he was the recipient of the Interlochen Fine Arts Award for Piano, and in 2008 he was recognized as an Honor Camper.  Adam is a founding member of the Amethyst Trio, a classical ensemble that performs regularly in the DC area.  He also knows how to play the flute, organ and harp.  In addition to music, Adam enjoys performing magic tricks. Congratulations on your diligence and hard work!


Week of October 10, 2011

Kate Lyn is a junior at McLean High School, where she is active in the drama department. She has performed in several shows and last spring she played the part of the grandma in their production of Sondheim’s “Into the Woods.” She began voice lessons with Peggy more than a year ago and she sang in our spring voice recital and at two student workshops. Kate Lyn has participated in several musical theatre workshops and in the Traveling Players Ensemble. She is also active in many church-related activities. Congratulations on your diligence and hard work!


Week of October 3, 2011

Michael began voice lessons last May and he has always been prepared for his lessons. He is a junior at Langley High School where he plays saxophone in the wind symphony and in the fall marching band. He also taught himself guitar and enjoys playing while singing. This summer he attended the NYSMF Music Camp in Oneota, New York. This young musician was born and raised in Chicago and learned to read music notes before he could read words. Michael has played the piano for eight years but has focused on saxophone for the past four years. He presently studies privately with Greg Stickler. Congratulations on your diligence and hard work!


Week of September 26 - 30, 2011

Maggie Dunlap, a sophomore, is home schooled and she is the second student of the week for this school year. Maggie not only sings, but this is her second year playing the viola. She began violin lessons in third grade. Maggie began voice lessons over 1½ years ago and she has made great progress and learned so much repertoire. She has participated in several student recitals and workshops. Last year she received an honorable mention in the Northern Virginia Music Teachers Association High School Voice Competition. Maggie is a member of the Washington Metropolitan Youth Orchestra and she studies viola with Mr. James Batts. Maggie will be assisting the orchestra by writing the concert program notes. This very intelligent young musician aspires to be a musicologist. Congratulations on your diligence and hard work!


Week of September 19-23, 2011

David is a freshman at Oakton High School, where he sings in an all men’s choir. He began voice lessons with Peggy in June and on September 1, 2011, he performed in a musical evening at Chesterbrook Residences in McLean. He has been singing since he was 8 years old. A close friend inspired him to sing! David is an active member of the Harvest Chinese Christian Church and this summer he spent a week at a church camp. Besides his interest in vocal music, David also studied the violin for 5 years. He plays soccer and he likes to draw. Best wishes on your continued music studies! Congratulations!

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