Meet the SMARTS Team
Meet our dedicated team of student assistants who work to make SMARTS great.
Katie is a Junior Music Education Major at Youngstown State University. Katie is a member of the Breakout Brass Quintet, Dana Symphony Orchestra and the YSU Marching Pride, where she serves as one of two Drum Majors. Katie is currently serving as the President of the Dana Horn Society. In her hometown of Erie, PA, Katie plays French Horn with the Gem City Community Concert Band. In addition, she performs both on the stage, and in the pit orchestra at the Erie Playhouse. Katie has worked with several high school bands as well as taught piano, drumming, and ukulele at the Inner-City Neighborhood Art House.
Belle is obtaining her bachelors degree at Youngstown State University for musical theater. She has been in theater and music her whole life and is excited to see what YSU theater and music is going to bring.
Meganne is currently enrolled in the Musical Theatre B. F. A. program at Youngstown State University, and she is so excited to work at SMARTS! Some of her favorite roles at Boardman High School were Glad Hand in West Side Story, Harriet Meddle in Sandbag, Stage Left, and Helena in A Midsummer Night's Dream. She has worked with Cari Auth and Amanda Beagle, and attended the Playhouse Square Broadway Summer Camp in 2017. During her first semester at YSU, she was seen as Clara in “Lorax” as a part of Youngstown State's Evening of 10 Minute Plays. Before COVID-19, Meganne was to appear in YSU's production of Romeo and Juliet as Friar John/Ensemble. In her spare time, Meganne makes videos-most notably, “The Unofficial 74th Tonys” featuring Bryan Terrell Clark and Maggie Bera. Most recently, she was cast in The Millennial Theatre Company's virtual production of Songs for a New World. She can't wait to begin sharing her love of theatre with SMARTS students!
Brendan is a violinist, composer, and violist from Fowler, Ohio. He is in his third year at the Dana School of Music at YSU, pursuing a degree in Music Composition. Brendan has been playing the violin for 14 years, and has performed with the Youngstown Symphony Youth Orchestra, the Dana Symphony Orchestra, the Greenville Symphony Orchestra, and at many local churches. He is also an active chamber musician as a violinist and violist, performing in duets, trios, and quartets playing works by Dvorak, Beethoven, Shostakovich, and Yun. He currently is the first violinist of the Ougheberrt Quartet at the Dana School of Music. As a composer, Brendan has had several original works and arrangements premiered by student chamber groups at Dana. His piece "Magisterial March" for wind ensemble received its premiere by the W. D. Packard Concert Band in Warren, Ohio in February 2020. As a teacher, Brendan is the instructor for the Warren Philharmonic Orchestra's Strings of Joy program, a non-profit initiative that offers free violin lessons to Trumbull County students in grades 3-7. He has held this position for the last two years. In addition to the Strings of Joy program, Brendan also maintains a private studio of violin students.
Sydney is a senior at Youngstown State University studying Dance Management. She is currently a Student Assistant at SMARTS and will be teaching dance classes for the upcoming spring semester. Over the years at Youngstown State, she has participated in Dance Ensemble, showcasing her talents in modern and contemporary dance. This year, she serves as the treasurer. Sydney attended high school at Woodland Hills High School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. During her four years of high school, Sydney participated in many musicals as a dancer and while also playing small roles in plays in the performing arts program. Her dance training began at Amie’s Dance Academy in Forest Hills, PA, where she performed her senior solo to Defying Gravity from the Broadway show Wicked.
Taryn is a new teacher and student assistant at SMARTS, but she has been the Hip Hop teacher and choreographer at Kathi's Dance & Gym Center for 3 years. Taryn danced at Kathi’s for the last 18 years where she received training in all styles of dance including Hip Hop, Jazz, Tap, Ballet, and Pointe. During her senior year at Kathi’s, she passed her Cecchetti Level VI Exam. Taryn graduated in the top ten of her class from East Palestine High School in 2019. She is currently pursuing a major in Psychology and a minor in Dance at Youngstown State University as a member of the Honors College to help and inspire others through the arts. She is also the Secretary of YSU’s Dance Ensemble, and is a new member of both YSU's Competitive and Performance Hip Hop Teams. Taryn is very grateful for the opportunity to work at SMARTS, and she is looking forward to what the future has in store for her!
Haley is a student at Youngstown State University pursuing a degree in Vocal Music Education and a minor in Musical Theatre. She has performed on collegiate and community stages across the area in musicals and cabarets, as well as fronting various jazz ensembles. Haley also has experienced valuable teaching opportunities, such as assistant directing a children’s choir, tutoring, and private voice teaching.
Becky Keck, SMARTS President.
SMARTS Circle Members: Myra Vitto, President; Paul Garchar, Vice President; Nicole Ramson, Treasurer; Misty Hazy, Secretary; Christine Rhoades, Past President; Denise Holt, Bergen Giordani, Alura Webb, and John A. McNally IV.
SMARTS at Ohio One
25 East Boardman Street, First Floor
Youngstown, OH 44503