Performance - Winds, Brass, & Percussion

Kelly McElrath Vaneman
Associate Professor of Oboe and Musicology
  • DMA, Yale University
  • MMA, Yale University
  • MM, Yale University
  • BM, Baylor University
Office: Blackman Music Hall, 101
Phone: 864.596.9005

Oboist Kelly McElrath Vaneman is Associate Professor of oboe and musicology and chair of the Department of Musicology and Composition at the Carroll McDaniel Petrie School of Music of Converse College. She holds DMA, MMA and MM degrees from the Yale University School of Music, where she was teaching assistant to Ronald Roseman. A native Texan, she received her BMus summa cum laude from Baylor University, where she studied with Doris DeLoach. In addition, she studied modern and Baroque oboe with Paul Dombrecht at the Koninklijk Konservatorium Brussel under a grant from the Belgian American Educational Foundation.

Dr. Vaneman is, above all, committed to chamber music and the expansion of its repertoire. As oboist of the oboe/flute/piano trio Ensemble Radieuse she has performed on three continents, premiered countless new works and arrangements, and recorded the CD Inbox. Ensemble Radieuse were prize-winners in the 2006 National Flute Society Chamber Music Competition and have been invited to perform at the conferences of the College Music Society (National), the International Double Reed Society, the Southeastern Composers Forum, and the South Carolina chapter of the Music Teachers National Association. They have also been featured performers on Nashville Public Radio’s Live in Studio C. In addition to her work with Ensemble Radieuse, Dr. Vaneman has pursued her love of chamber music as an Artist-Fellow at the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival and the Bach Aria Festival, as oboist of the chamber ensembles BYNA and Conversant, and was founder and director of Chamber Music in the Chapel in New York City’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

As a soloist, Dr. Vaneman has been active in the new music scene and has over thirty premieres to her credit. She has appeared as a soloist with orchestras in Guatemala, Texas, and South Carolina and has played as a member of the Central Texas, Waco, Asheville, Spartanburg and New Haven Symphony Orchestras, the National Orchestral Institute, the American Wind Symphonyand the Reigate Festival Orchestra of Surrey, England.

A musician of wide-ranging interests, Dr. Vaneman has performed Baroque music on period instruments and directs and performs with the Converse Early Music Ensemble. She has also performed and recorded as a member of the New York-based rock bands Rome 56 and the Ashley Wilkes Band. She is a past president of the Rho chapter of Pi Kappa Lambda and a member of Alpha Chi and has written for The Double Reed, the journal of the International Double Reed Society. She spends her summers in residence at the Performing Arts Institute of Wyoming Seminary in Kingston, Pennsylvania, where she performs with the PAI Symphony and teaches oboe and chamber music.

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John Holloway
Instructor of Low Brass
  • MMEd in Music Education, Florida State University
  • BM in Music Education, Furman University
Office: Blackman Music Hall, 204
Phone: 864.596.9021

John Holloway recently retired after 34 years in the South Carolina public school system. During his career he taught at various times high school and junior high band, elementary music, world drumming, junior high strings, and chorus. He served Converse College as adjunct instructor of low brass and music education from 2006-2012.

As a performer, Mr. Holloway has played tuba for the Spartanburg Philharmonic Orchestra in its various incarnations since 1981. He also performs with the SPO Brass and the Emerald City Brass Quintet, and he regularly subs for many area ensembles. He is a founding member of the Spartanburg Community Band and served as its music director for its first two seasons. He has served regionally as a performer, soloist, conductor, clinician, and adjudicator.

Mr. Holloway is a member of NAfME, SCMEA, SCBDA, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, and Phi Beta Mu. He graduated summa cum laude from Furman University, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and Pi Kappa Lambda. At Florida State he studied conducting and wind ensemble literature with Carl Bjerregard and tuba with David Wilson.

Mr. Holloway is a native of Bennettsville, South Carolina.

Karen Hill
Instructor of Clarinet and Saxophone
  • MM, University of Michigan
  • BM, Northwestern University
Office: Blackman Music Hall, 111
Phone: 864.596.9129

An active performer, Karen Hill is currently the Principal Clarinetist of the Spartanburg Philharmonic, Principal Second Clarinetist of the Asheville Symphony and a member of the Arbor Wind Trio. She has appeared as a soloist with the Spartanburg Philharmonic, Brevard Chamber Orchestra, Calgary Philharmonic, Music Academy of the West Festival Orchestra, and the Converse Symphony Orchestra. In the past she also served as Principal Clarinetist with the Hendersonville Symphony, the Brevard Chamber Orchestra, and the French Broad River Woodwind Quintet. A freelance musician in the area for over 20 years, she also has performed with the Asheville Lyric Opera Company, Augusta Symphony Orchestra, Augusta Opera Company, Charleston Symphony, Charlotte Symphony, Greenville Symphony, North Carolina Symphony and the South Carolina Philharmonic.

Karen has been on the faculty at Converse College since 2000 and prior to that time taught at Brevard College, Mars Hill College, Clemson University, the University of South Carolina, Union, and the School for Gifted Students in the Arts. A high school graduate of the Interlochen Arts Academy, Mrs. Hill holds degrees in clarinet performance from Northwestern University and the University of Michigan, where she was a full-tuition Fellow. She is a former student of the world-renowned clarinetist Robert Marcellus.

A summer music enthusiast throughout high school and college, Karen spent her summers at music festivals such as the Banff Center, Brevard Music Center, Interlochen , Music Academy of the West, and the School of Orchestral Studies, a summer affiliate of the Philadelphia Orchestra. She has also performed at Piccolo Spoleto, the Cullowhee Music Festival, and at Wild Acres as a Woodwind Quintet Artist in Residence.

Currently, Karen spends her summers on the faculty of the MasterWorks Festival as the Director of Chamber Music. She also serves on the Board of Directors of its parent organization, the Christian Performing Artists' Fellowship. She lives in Gaffney, SC, with her husband Chip, also a clarinetist, and their three boys.

Frank Watson
Instructor of Bassoon
  • MM, University of Southern Mississippi
  • BM, Furman University
Office: Blackman Music Hall, 230
Phone: 864.596.9021

Frank Watson, Instructor of Bassoon, has had a long and varied career as a professional musician. He has been a member of the Greenville Symphony for over 40 years, and a member of the Spartanburg Philharmonic Orchestra for nearly 20 years. A talented multi-woodwind specialist, Mr. Watson has played with such notable and varied musical artists as Aretha Franklin, Natalie Cole, The Temptations, The Four Tops, Robert Goulet, Bob Hope, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Billy Davis and Marilyn McCoo, Glenn Campbell, The Manhattans, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, as well as the touring companies of West Side Story and Chicago.  

Mr. Watson retired from a 34-year public school teaching career with 32 years spent teaching Band in Spartanburg School District Six. Mr. Watson has served as an Adjunct Instructor at Furman University, Limestone College and Presbyterian College in addition to Converse. Frank has studied with several respected woodwind artists including Dr. Robert Chesebro (Furman University); Dr. Donald Munsell, Dr. William T. Gower and Dr. Joe Barry Mullins (University of Southern Mississippi); Mr. William Polisi (NBC Symphony); Mr. Carl Vendetti (Charlotte Symphony). Frank holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Furman University (Major in Woodwind Performance) and a Master of Music degree from the University of Southern Mississippi (Major in Bassoon Performance). An avid golfer, Mr. Watson was the 2002 Spartanburg County Senior Amateur Champion, and enjoys playing golf as often as possible.

Anneka Zuehlke
Instructor of Horn
Office: Blackman Music Hall, 230
Phone: 864.596.9021

Anneka Zuehlke was born and raised in Northern Virginia, and began playing the horn in fifth grade with her elementary school band. Her serious commitment to music developed in the robust music programs in Fairfax County and Northern Virginia, and the opportunity to study under Sylvia Alimena of the National Symphony Orchestra. Anneka went on to Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, studying with Myron Bloom (formerly of the Cleveland Orchestra) and Jerome Ashby (New York Philharmonic). While at Curtis, she played with a number of professional ensembles, including the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, the Reading Symphony and the Haddonfield Symphony.

After earning her bachelor's degree in music from Curtis, she received her master's degree at the Yale School of Music, where she studied with William Purvis, and was awarded the John Swallow Prize for outstanding brass performance. While at Yale, Anneka performed with the Connecticut Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra and Hartford Symphony in addition to her university ensembles.

In May 2004, upon completion of her studies at Yale, Anneka won the position of Principal Horn with the Greenville Symphony Orchestra. In addition to holding the position of Principal Horn in Greenville, Anneka also serves as the Principal Horn of the Spartanburg Philharmonic and Third Horn in the Asheville Symphony Orchestra. She will also serve as Acting Principal Horn with the Symphony Orchestra Augusta for this 2012-2013 season. In addition to her symphonic work, Anneka is a member of both the Greenville Brass Quintet and the Reedy River Brass Trio, which perform regularly around the Upstate. 

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Adena Shoemake McDaniel
Instructor of Percussion
  • MMEd, University of Southern Mississippi
  • BM, Georgia State University
Office: Blackman Music Hall, 130
Phone: 864.596.9021

Adena Shoemake McDaniel is adjunct instructor of percussion at the Petrie School of Music of Converse College. In addition to her responsibilities of teaching the percussion dtudio at the Petrie School, she is currently teaching music at Houston Elementary in Spartanburg School District 7. She is also teaching the Spartanburg High School percussions sections. Prior to her move to Spartanburg, Mrs. McDaniel was a free-lance private teacher and drumline instructor to many Metro-Atlanta area high schools.

As a performer, Mrs. McDaniel performs with the Converse Wind Ensemble, the Converse Symphony Orchestra and the Spartanburg Philharmonic. She has also performed in the “World’s Largest Marimba Orchestra” under the direction of Fredrick Fennell in West Point NY and toured with the Spirit of Atlanta Drum and Bugle Corp in 1998.

Mrs. McDaniel graduated from Georgia State University in Atlanta, GA with a Bachelor of Music degree in education and a Master of Music Education degree from the University of Southern Mississippi. She is a member of National Association for Music Education and the Percussive Arts Society.