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At the Hartt of the Performing Arts World

The Hartt School Community Division (HCD), the community extension of The Hartt School, is a national model for community schools on university campuses.  

Our innovative faculty provide a learning environment that engages, enriches, and transforms aspiring artists from pre-k to adult.

We work with more than 2,800 students every year in activities that include:

  • individual and group instruction
  • chamber groups and large ensembles
  • performances and recitals
  • musicianship classes
  • workshops and master classes

We believe in the transformative power of the performing arts. We look forward to welcoming you to our community.

Music

HCD has more than 150 music educators — specialists in their instruments and fields — who focus on the development of well-rounded musicians, from practice to performance.

Dance

HCD’s dance program offers a comprehensive curriculum of technical training, repertoire, and performance opportunities, designed to prepare students to pursue their individual goals, whether they be professional, collegiate, or life enrichment.

College Prep

Several of HCD’s programs were specially designed with college-preparedness in mind. Our experienced faculty members are here to help each and every student get a head start on a collegiate-level education.

Our People

David Madsen

Suzuki Guitar

David Madsen founded what is now The Hartt School Community Division Suzuki Guitar Program in 1991 and is now the Suzuki Guitar Coordinator. Madsen graduated with a Bachelor of Music in performance from the University of Connecticut, studying with David McLellan and Ed Flower. 

His teaching philosophy: "Every child can! This applies not only to music and other scholastic areas, but also to life in general. How to problem solve, how to communicate, how to be a team player are only a few of the life skills I try to develop."

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Our People

Katherine Bonner-Russo

Tuba and Euphonium

Katherine holds a Master's Degree in Music Performance and a Graduate Performance Diploma from The Hartt School and a Bachelor's Degree in Music Performance and a Diploma from the Arts Leadership Program from the Eastman School of Music.

Katherine is the principal tubist of the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra. She has performed with the Chelsea Symphony, Waterbury Symphony Orchestra, Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra, Wallingford Symphony, and Classic Brass of Willimantic. She has performed in venues across the United States, including Carnegie Hall, Cornell University, the Elley-Long Music Center, Eastman Theater, The Bushnell, Faneuil Hall, and Woolsey Hall.

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Our People

Luke Nelson

Jazz and Popular Music Institute

Luke Nelson is a music educator and musician. Nelson holds a Master of Music Education degree from Boston University, as well as a B.A. in music theory and composition from Central Connecticut State University.

Nelson has worked with many jazz greats including Brad Goode, Don Stiernberg, Johnny Frigo, and his dear friend and mentor, Jon Hendricks. His teaching philosophy: “Teach the student, not the curriculum.”

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Our People

Meredith Neumann

Director of the Connecticut Children's Chorus

Neumann has ten years of experience teaching middle school choirs throughout Connecticut.  She is Choirmaster of the Cathedral of Saint Joseph in Hartford, conducting the Schola Cantorum and the Cathedral Youth Chorus.

In addition to her teaching and conducting appointments, Neumann is a member of Voce, Connecticut’s premier professional choral ensemble.

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Our People

Sarkis Kaltakhtchian

Artistic and Education Director, Dance

A native of Armenia, Sarkis Kaltakhtchian studied at the Choreographic Institute of Yerevan, where he graduated with honors. Thereafter, he joined the Armenian National Ballet. In 1989, Kaltakhtchian was invited to join Ballets Classique de Montreal.

He also performed with Banff Festival of the Arts, Classical Ballet of Costa Rica, Ottowa Ballet, Hartford Ballet, Charlotte Ballet, and Tulsa Ballet Theatre.

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