top of page
Alex Vittal
Ana Luna
Olasuyi Ige



DASC Symphony Founder & Director


Director Philharmonic Orchestra

Sarah Jylkka is a Denver-based professional violinist and violist with over 15 years of experience. She has taught at El Sistema Colorado and served as an orchestra director for Mapleton Public Schools in Thornton, CO from 2017-2021. She is active in the Colorado orchestra world serving as an instrumental coach, private teacher, orchestra clinician, and violinist in the Arapahoe Philharmonic.

Sarah holds both a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education from DePauw University in Greencastle, IN as well as an active Colorado State Teacher's License endorsed in K-12 instrumental music. She is a professional member of the American String Teachers Association and Suzuki Association of the Americas. Notably, Sarah has performed with members of Elephant Revival, LVDY, Stratus, The Blind Cafe Orchestra, Su Teatro, Suhl Ensemble, recorded SFX for Mt. Mograph, and has designed sound for both The Pandemic Collective and Bewilderment Theater Company. Sarah has studied under Ericka Dicker, Tarn Travers, Julia Taylor,  and Allie Krall of Yonder Mountain String Band.

Sarah currently runs a home studio and teaches and performs throughout the Denver metro area as well as teaching violin remotely through Trala Violin. You can see Sarah perform violin around Colorado with the viking rock band, Nordic Daughter.

rebecca jonas.jpeg


Director Spruce Ensemble


Rebecca Jonas is an active musician, educator, and mental health advocate with a strong background in cello performance and public school teaching. Originally from the East Coast, she received a B.M. in Cello Performance from Mercyhurst University, and an M.S. in Music
Education from Mansfield University. She recently graduated with her M.A. in Counseling from Colorado University at Denver. She taught elementary through high school strings in Spotsylvania and Prince William County School systems in Northern Virginia After moving to
Colorado in 2009, Rebecca taught in St. Vrain Valley School District, Denver Public Schools, and Douglas County School District. Throughout her time in the public schools Rebecca became known for offering fun and diverse ensembles and experiences for her students, high quality performances for audiences to enjoy, and interacting with the local community in innovative ways.

Rebecca maintains an active and varied performance career, balancing her time between classical and non-classical scenes. She can often be seen along the Front Range performing. In her spare, non-musical time, she enjoys baking, reading, and hiking with her crazy dog Holly.


Alex Vittal.jpeg

Director Chamber Ensemble 


Phoenix, AZ native, Alex Vittal, earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Viola Performance from Arizona State University (2008) and Master of Music degree in Viola Performance and Pedagogy from the University of Colorado–Boulder (2010). Vittal excels in a wide range of musical styles, performing orchestral music as a member of the Steamboat Symphony Orchestra, opera with Opera Steamboat, traditional Argentine tango music with Zero Hour, string quartets with the Highland Square Ensemble, and Baroque music on period instruments with the Baroque Chamber Orchestra of Colorado.  He is Executive Director, violist, and arranger of Denver-based Sphere Ensemble, a 14 member string ensemble that performs great music from diverse composers and genres and with a commitment to education and outreach in the community.  Mr. Vittal is also passionate about arranging music, and has written for groups including Zero Hour, the Baroque Chamber Orchestra of Colorado, and Sphere Ensemble for whom he has over 75 arranger credits, as well as countless arrangements of works for students.

Vittal has been a dedicated and multi-faceted educator for nearly two decades, teaching private viola and violin lessons, group classes for beginner and intermediate string players, coaching chamber music, and as a conductor with the Colorado Youth Symphony Orchestra.  Dedicated to social justice through music education, Vittal has spent 11 years working with underserved elementary, middle school, and high school students as a Teaching Artist with El Sistema Colorado.  In August 2018, he had the distinct honor of conducting Yo-Yo Ma, performing Bach’s Air accompanied by students from El Sistema, in the This Is Home community block party, as part of Ma’s 36-city Bach Cello Suites tour.


Ana Luna-8.jpg

Violin Coach - Chamber Ensemble


Ana Luna is a French-Colombian violinist and movement artist currently based in Denver, CO. She specializes in immersive events and interdisciplinary arts collaboration and loves to work with different arts disciplines to create magic.


Ana is classically trained but is also proficient in a variety of styles such as jazz, R&B, hip-hop, electronic music, rock and roll and pop. She specializes in DJ/violin fusion and has worked with various DJ’s for public and private events around the United States. Ana can be seen playing regularly with the all female electric string quartet, Spinphony and works frequently with OnCue Entertainment, Elan Artists, Imprint Events and Aragon Artists. She was most recently the violinist for The Queen's Ball: A Bridgerton Experience, produced by Netflix, Shondaland and Fever.


Ana is always thinking outside the box and loves to bring something imaginative and different to violin playing and performance. 


Suyi staff pic.jpeg

Violin Coach - Philharmonic Orchestra

Olasuyi Ige is a violinist and an inspiring educator who received his Bachelor’s
in Violin Performance from the University of Denver Lamont School of Music
(Manga Cum Laude). He is currently pursuing his Masters in violin performance and composition at the Lamont School of Music under the instruction of Igor Pikayzen and Sean Friar.

As a violinist, Olasuyi has performed many works by Beethoven, Brahms,
William Grant Still, Mozart, and Wieniawski. Venues that Olasuyi has performed in includes Dazzle Jazz Club, Gates Concert Hall, and Hamilton Recital Hall. Olasuyi enjoys working with the nonprofit organization called El Sistema Colorado that provides group and private music lessons to underrepresented youth in the Denver area.
Teaching is one of Olasuyi’s passions and he enjoys seeing previous and current students share their love for music and learning.


Over the years he has been to many music festivals such as Pacific Region International Summer Music Academy (PRISMA) in Powell River, Canada, Interlochen Arts Camp in Interlochen, Michigan, and Sphinx Summer Academy in Chicago, Illinois.

When he is not performing or teaching Olasuyi likes to write and arrange
chamber music for both chamber groups and larger ensembles.



Jukka staff photo.jpeg

Violin Coach - Chamber

Jukka Pawley began formally studying opera at the age of 8. After being asked to join SAG, he made appearances on several tv shows and television events. At 13, he began privately studying violin in Los Angeles, California; where he refined his technique and tone. After attending music school in Europe; he decided to pursue musical endeavors in the US. Jukka has recorded alongside some Grammy award-winning producers including the late David Royce Aron, Denny Randall, and Corey Stocker.

Currently residing in Denver, Colorado; Jukka teaches private violin lessons both and performs at special events. His repertoire ranges from classical to pop music and can customize setlists for any occasion.

What students can expect when they work with Jukka Pawley; would be his attention to detail and professionalism. His sound is passionate and he has a reverent approach to teaching.  He looks forward to connecting with you soon!


Laena staff picture.jpeg

Violin Coach - Philharmnoic

Laena Grace Batchelder is a violinist, musician, and social justice advocate. Following her mission to support diversity, equity, and inclusion in classical music, she has programmed works by female, minority, contemporary, and non-traditional composers in her recitals including her honors project recital, Women of American Chamber Music. She believes in combining classical and popular music to appeal to wider audiences which she has implemented in recitals and YouTube videos. Laena also aims to apply these ideals to her teaching in her private studio. She learned violin from age six with the Suzuki Method, so that philosophy and repertoire are very present in her teaching. She has also been trained in teaching the method through Book 2. However, she incorporates many other methods and has assigned pieces from Music by Black Composers and the Barbara Barber method books as well as arrangements of popular songs.

Laena graduated with a Master of Music at the University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder) studying with Charles Wetherbee. Her studies there focused on chamber music, string pedagogy, and expanding her own technique and repertoire. Previously, she graduated from Texas Christian University (TCU) in her hometown of Fort Worth, Texas with a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance (summa cum laude). She studied with Elisabeth Adkins at TCU and with Martha Walvoord during her high school years. She has attended summer festivals such as Wintergreen, the Texas Music Festival, the TCU Quartet Intensive, and the National Symphony Orchestra Summer Music Institute. She is also a section violinist with the Boulder Symphony and the Arapahoe Philharmonic.

​In addition to music, Laena enjoys reading, knitting, swing dancing, progressive politics, and hanging out with her friends.


Lindsay_Genadek Headshot 2.jpg

Viola Coach 

Lindsay teaches private violin and viola lessons from her home studio in Denver, Colorado and is the Outreach and Education Coordinator for Augustana Arts. She is currently President-Elect for Colorado American String Teachers Association. Prior to these positions, she taught orchestra at the public school level, most recently as an elementary and middle school orchestra director at Westminster Public Schools. Prior to this position, she served as the Head Orchestra Director at Mapleton Public Schools and taught at El Sistema Colorado as the String Teaching Artist.   
Lindsay is very active in the music education community. She is currently the Outreach and Education Coordinator for Augustana Arts – City Strings helping bring music education to underserved communities, is the President-Elect for the Colorado American String Teachers Association, is on the American String Teachers Association (ASTA) Private Studio Committee,
served as a mentor for the ASTA New Teacher Mentor Program and has served as the Secretary of the Colorado American String Teachers Association. She is a published author in the ASTA Journal and has presented sessions at the American String Teachers Association National Conference, the Colorado Music Educators Association Conference as well as the Colorado American String Teachers Association Summer Conference.
She was the recipient of the Mapleton Public School’s Teacher of the Year Award in 2015 and was given the Colorado American String Teachers Association’s Exemplary Middle School and Junior High School Teacher Award in 2012. 

Lindsay can be seen performing on her viola throughout Colorado in a variety of capacities. Most recently, Lindsay performed with the Boulder Symphony Orchestra as principal viola, the Denver Philharmonic where she played both section violist and principal violist, Stratus Chamber Orchestra Arapahoe Philharmonic, Evergreen Chamber Orchestra and the Grand Junction Symphony Orchestra.



Cello Coach - Philharmonic Orchestra


Kari Clifton is a Colorado native and creative cellist who performs, teaches, and composes music in the Denver-metro area. Kari has been performing professionally since 2012 and holds a Bachelor's of Music  in classical performance from Metropolitan State University of Denver where she also studied jazz and improv.


Notable past performances include performing in pop orchestras alongside Josh Groban, Sara Brightman, Evanescence, Distrubed, 2 Cellos, and Trans-Siberian Orchestra. She has joined performances with a number of local Denver groups both on stage and in the recording studio, is a current member of the indie-folk group The Deborah Solo Trio, and is a former member of Denver’s rock-pop-classical fusion string quartet, Spinphony where she contributed as a performer, arranger, and outreach organizer.


As a classically trained musician with a love for all musical styles, Kari aims to bridge the gap between classical music and just about everything else.


Joseph Engel.jpeg

Cello Coach - Philharmonic Orchestra


Joseph Engel is a performer and educator in Colorado. He has a background in classical and contemporary cello styles, and is always seeking new sound worlds with the cello. He is a member of the Denver based eclectic-rock band, "Milquetoast & Co." and has shared the stage with artists such as The Sugar Hill Gang and Wilco. As an educator, Joseph incorporates many teaching philosophies, including those inspired by non-western musics and meditation. He holds a Masters of Music in cello performance from Denver University, where he has acted as a visiting lecturer.


Jake Thurston staff.png

Double Bass Coach - Philharmonic Orchestra

Originally from Buffalo NY, Jake Thurston earned his Bachelor’s degree in Music education from Buffalo State College and his Master’s Degree in Double Bass performance from the Fredonia School of music in Fredonia NY.

Jake Currently holds positions with the Boulder Symphony Orchestra and the Arapahoe Philharmonic and regularly subs with many orchestras in the area, including the Boulder Philharmonic, Greeley Philharmonic and Cheyenne Symphony Orchestra. He previously was a member of the Buffalo Civic Orchestra, Four Centuries Chamber Orchestra and the Warren Philharmonic and subbed regularly with the Western NY Chamber Orchestra.

Jake holds teaching positions as the Double Bass Instructor at Denver School of the Arts andDouble Bass Studio TA at CU Boulder School of Music as well as maintaining a private double bass studio.

Robbie Cummins

robbie staff pic.jpeg

Operations Manager

Robbie is a local research coordinator, computer programming hobbyist, former soldier, and lover of music.

Robbie has served over 12 years in the Army National Guard as a horizontal engineer supervisor with involvement in multiple domestic and international initiatives. He concurrently earned his Bachelors Degree in Psychology and minor in Gerontology from West Virginia University. More recently, Robbie began working for the CU Anschutz Medical Campus as a clinical research coordinator. He currently specializes in Parkinson's Disease and deep brain stimulation. Robbie hopes to one day lead clinical research associated with mindfulness in the form of meditation, music, and other "flow state" avenues.


Robbie welcomes all forms of music and really wants to learn how to bend guitar strings like in the song "Midnight in Harlem" by The Tedeschi Trucks Band.

Jukka Pawley
laena batchelder
Kari Clifton
joe engel
Jake Thurston
Lindsay Genadek
Robbie Cummins
bottom of page