Pre-College Strings Program
Dr. Ching-Yi Lin is Assistant Professor of Violin and Director of the WKU Pre-College Strings Program at Western Kentucky University. Recent performances and masterclasses have taken her to the Barratt Due Institute of Music in Norway, Shenyang and Xi'an Conservatories in China, Northwestern University, University of British Columbia, Louisiana State University, and University of North Texas. During the summer months, Lin serves on the faculty at the Indiana University Summer String Academy, String Explosion (WKU), and has also served on the faculty of the Sommersymfonien i Kristiansand in Norway. In 2013, Lin was presented with the prestigious Jefferson Award for Public Service in Washington, D.C., recognizing her work in bringing music into the lives of young people throughout her community.
Lin was appointed Associate Instructor of Violin at Indiana University in 2008 while also working as a teaching assistant to Professor Mauricio Fuks. At the pre-college level, she has taught as an instructor for the IU String Academy, working closely with her mentors Professor Mimi Zweig and Dr. Brenda Brenner. In 2008-2009, Lin acted as co-researcher, violin instructor, and piano accompanist for the Fairview Project – a research project designed to assess how underprivileged children can benefit academically and socially from learning the violin.
In addition to performing and teaching students of all ages, Lin also has a true passion for mentoring young pedagogues. Her dissertation topic, "An Undergraduate Pedagogy Curriculum for Teaching Beginning Violin Students," was chosen primarily due to her strong desire to train aspiring teachers. She is actively engaged in presenting seminars at various conferences such as the American String Teacher's Association National conference, the Kentucky and Tennessee Music Educator's Association conferences.
Lin earned her BM, MM, and DM in Violin Performance at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, and studied in the Vienna Conservatory from 2001–2003. Her principal teachers include Mauricio Fuks, Boris Kuschnir, Fredell Lack, and Nelli Shkolnikova. She plays on a violin made in 1863 by Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume.
Sarah Berry has been on the music faculty oat Western Kentucky University since 2005. In her time at WKU, she has been involved in many areas of string education – teaching and developing the Bowling Green City and Warren County Public School Strings Program, directing WKU's Summer String Explosion Camp, founding the Symphony String Contest, and performing as Principal Cellist with the Symphony and the Baker Chamber Players. Passionate about string education, Sarah is a frequent guest adjudicator and conductor for area string programs. An active chamber musician, Sarah is a founding member of the cello / percussion duo, Col Legno and The Tzedakah Trio. Mrs. Berry received her Masters in Cello Performance from Rice University and her Bachelor of Music degree from Vanderbilt University with majors in Cello Performance and German. Her principal teachers include Felix Wang, Norman Fischer and Grace Mihi Bahng.
Viola and Violin
Violist Andrew Braddock is currently on the faculty of Western Kentucky University (WKU) and the WKU Pre-College Strings Program. He teaches viola at the university and maintains a full pre-college studio of young violinists and violists. Andrew has given masterclasses throughout the United States and abroad, at institutions such as the Xi’an Conservatory (China), the Da’an School (Taiwan), the Indiana University Summer String Academy, and Oklahoma University. He has presented pedagogy sessions at the Kentucky and Tennessee Music Educators Association conferences (KMEA and TMEA). Andy serves as the Editor of the Journal of the American Viola Society. In addition to his many recital performances in the Kentucky area, Andrew has performed in Israel, Austria, Indiana and Colorado. He currently serves as the principal violist of the Paducah Symphony Orchestra, and he has been as a member of the Evansville Philharmonic and Owensboro Symphony Orchestras. Andrew studied violin and viola pedagogy with Mimi Zweig at Indiana University and has taught in the IU String Academy. He is in the process of completing a Doctorate of Musical Arts at the University of Kentucky. He holds a Masters in Viola performance from Indiana University, under the tutelage of Atar Arad, and a Bachelors of Music (summa cum laude) from Vanderbilt University, where he was awarded the Jean Keller Heard Prize for Excellence in string performance. His principal teachers are Atar Arad, Kathryn Plummer, and John Graham. Visit andybraddock.com for media and other information.
Marcela Joachimstaler came to Kentucky from San Miguel de Allende, Mexico in December of 2010. She has been the primary private and group violin teacher since 2013 at The Guitar Academy in Bowling Green, KY. She began her music studies as a piano player and later on violin and music education. She performed in different music ensembles all over Mexico as well as on national radio and TV. She taught in different elementary schools and music schools in San Miguel de Allende and in Mexico City. In 2000 she started her Suzuki training with teachers from the Suzuki Association of the Americas and she has been teaching with this method ever since, from Early Childhood Education to Violin Book 3. She has taught children as young as 9 months old to adults over 60. Marcela is fluent in Spanish and English and has intervene as a translator even at Suzuki training classes. She is currently enjoying teaching Suzuki violin to students starting at 2 years old, and is excited to be part of the music community in Bowling Green.
Josh Propst received a bachelor’s degree in music performance from Western Kentucky University (WKU) in 2017 and is currently working toward a master’s degree in music pedagogy at WKU. While at WKU, he has served in a leadership capacity in WKU’s American String Teachers Association (ASTA) chapter—Vice President (2014-2016) and Treasurer (2017-present)—and was invited to perform for the Eclectic Styles Masterclass at the 2014 ASTA National Conference. In 2015, Propst had two short film scores (Sain, The Brothers Cotchery) nominated for the WKU Film Festival’s Best Original Score, and his score for Sain, won the award. He was also accepted into the WKU chapter of the national music honorary society, Pi Kappa Lambda, in 2017. Josh has studied cello under Allison Olsen, Jay Tilton, Dr. Yooni Choi, and most recently, Sarah Berry. Propst has been on the cello faculty for the WKU Pre-College Strings Program since 2016.
Outside of WKU, Propst is musically active in and around the Bowling Green area. He has been a teaching assistant with the Bowling Green Youth Orchestra, which includes students from five surrounding counties, since 2016. Propst also co-owns and manages SoKY Cellos, a cello duo that performs for weddings, receptions, and events in southern Kentucky. The duo was formed in 2016, and they perform a wide variety of repertoire ranging from Baroque to Contemporary Pop music.
In addition to being a classical cellist, Propst sings harmony and plays electric cello and mandolin in the Americana/folk band, Jordan Allen & the Bellwethers. Performing since 2013, the band has released three albums—Jordan Allen & the Bellwethers (2014), Rare Breed (2016), and The Covers EP (2018)—and is currently in the recording process for their fourth release, Weary in Well-Doing. The band has played in venues across the southeastern US, including a main-stage performance at the 2015 Creation Festival in Lexington, KY and two performances at the prestigious Bluebird Café in Nashville, TN.