Dr. Matthew H. Spieker, Conductor of Youth Symphony Orchestra & Conductor of Intermezzo Orchestra

Matthew H. Spieker has been a music educator for 25 years having taught all levels of orchestra and general music in U.S. school districts of South Carolina and Colorado, and from 2005 to 2007 Dr. Spieker taught internationally at the John F. Kennedy Schule in Berlin, Germany. In 2013 he worked at the University of Arizona, Fred Fox School of Music and in 2016 at Ball State University as assistant professor music education.

Dr. Spieker’s school ensembles performed several times at Colorado’s state music convention and received numerous superior ratings at large group music festivals. They also toured Germany and Austria and received wonderful reviews and created lifelong friendships with the German Sinfonie Orchester der Musikschule Lüchow-Dannenberg.

Dr. Spieker has also been a conductor and adjudicator throughout the United States and around the world including Arizona, Colorado, Utah, New Hampshire, New York and South Carolina, and in cities abroad including Brussels, Vienna, Geneva and Beijing. Since 2000 Dr. Spieker has been the conductor of the Internationales Orchester Camp in Lüchow, Germany.

As a clinician, Dr. Spieker speaks to issues concerning string pedagogy, music education advocacy, recruiting, motivation and more. He has presented at Arizona, Colorado and New Hampshire’s State Music Education conferences and nationally at the American String Teacher’s Association (ASTA) National Conference, Society for Music Teacher Education (SMTE), and the Midwest Clinic in Chicago.

Published articles include state music journals of Alabama and Oregon and nationally with NAfME’s Teaching Music and General Music Today. Dr. Spieker’s research interests include youth string musicians’ health, string pedagogy, advocacy, and music education history.

Dr. Spieker has been involved with professional communities of ASTA (American String Teachers Association), NAfME (National Association of Music Education), CMEA (Colorado Music Educators Association), AMEA (Arizona Music Education Association), AMIS (Association of Music in International Schools) and CMS (College Music Society).

Dr. Spieker holds a Bachelor’s degree in music education from the University of Northern Colorado, a Master’s of Music Education degree from Converse College in Spartanburg, South Carolina, and a Doctorate of Arts degree from the University of Northern Colorado.

The best part of Dr. Spieker’s life is being a husband, father and now Grandad (or Grumps) to a loving and supportive family.

Matthew Cooperman, Conductor of Youth Symphony Orchestra

Matthew Cooperman is a Master’s conducting student at Ball State University whose responsibilities include work with the Ball State Campus Orchestra, Ball State Symphony Orchestra, and assisting with the Muncie Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Cooperman comes from Columbus, Ohio, where he received his Bachelor of Music Education degree from the Conservatory of Music at Capital University.

During his time at Capital University, Mr. Cooperman served as Assistant Conductor for the Capital University Orchestra and made his orchestral conducting debut in 2014, conducting Copland’s An Outdoor Overture; the following year, Mr. Cooperman conducted Sibelius’ Finlandia. As Assistant Conductor, Mr. Cooperman covered numerous rehearsals and rehearsed repertoire including Beethoven’s Symphony No. 1, Schubert’s Symphony No. 8 “Unfinished,” Bernstein’s Symphonic Suite from “On the Waterfront,” and Mozart’s Flute Concerto No. 1. Mr. Cooperman was a conducting winner of the 2013 Capital University Student Concerto Competition, and in the same year was a participant at the Conductor’s Collegium at the University of North Texas. While in high school, Mr. Cooperman conducted Worthington Kilbourne High School’s production of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. His primary conducting instructors include Mr. Douglas Droste, Mr. William Boggs, and Dr. Jeffrey D. Gershman. He has done additional study with Dr. Barry E. Kopetz and Mr. Don Nathan.

An avid composer, Mr. Cooperman has composed works for both large and chamber ensembles, and has conducted most of his premieres. In 2014, Mr. Cooperman was a composition winner of the Capital University Student Concerto Competition and was a featured composer at the Capital University NOW Music Festival in 2014 and 2015, respectively for his flute quartet, The Sweet and Sassy Promenade, and his work for full concert band, Blueprint of a View. Mr. Cooperman premiered several compositions in high school with the Worthington Kilbourne High School Wind Symphony, and as an incoming high school sophomore, Mr. Cooperman was one of 14 students selected to attend the Young Composer’s Program at the Cleveland Institute of Music. From 2011-12, Mr. Cooperman was fortunate enough to study composition with respected American composer Donald Harris.

Dr. Irina Mueller, Conductor of Prelude Orchestra

Irina has given solo recitals throughout the United States and Germany, and as an orchestral musician she has toured Europe and Japan. She has appeared as soloist with orchestras, performing the Brahms Violin Concerto in Germany and Romania. For three years she served as Co-Concertmaster of the Great Falls Symphony in Montana, USA, and performed with the symphony’s resident string ensemble, the Cascade Quartet. In addition to maintaining a private teaching studio, she served as adjunct faculty at the University of Great Falls. Ms. Mueller also provided weekly string instruction in Havre, Montana as “Artist in Residence” for the “Artists in Schools and Communities Program,” a collaboration between the Hi-Line Arts Project, Northern Showcase Concert Association, and Montana Arts Council. She is a recently appointed member of the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra and performs regularly with regional orchestras in Indiana and as Associate Musician with the Columbus Symphony Orchestra in Ohio.

Ms. Mueller holds Bachelor and Master of Music degrees and an Arts Leadership Certificate from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, and she has been awarded a Soloist’s Diploma by the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik in Trossingen, Germany. Ms. Mueller has recently completed a Doctor of Arts degree, with a secondary in Entrepreneurial Studies.

Tiffany Janney Arnold, Executive Director & Suzuki Instructor

Tiffany is Executive Director of the YSOECI, an organization in which she played violin as a student in elementary through high school. She also teaches the YSOECI Suzuki-based violin class for 5- and 6-year-olds.  She brings a lifelong love of the arts, a dedication to the community, and a background in business management, all of which combine to further the musical education of young people. In addition to her responsibilities with the YSOECI, Tiffany is a Suzuki-certified violin teacher who teaches privately in Muncie, Indiana. She is a member of the Muncie Symphony Orchestra and performs with other orchestras in the area.  She holds a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and a Bachelor of Arts in Art History from Oberlin College, and has completed graduate studies in business.

Board Members

Sarah Hersey, President
Cathy Swift, Treasurer
Tambra White, Secretary
Tiffany Arnold, Executive Director
Matthew Cooperman, Conductor
Matt Spieker, Conductor
Leonard Atherton
Marian Cooley
Doug Droste
Jennifer Hollems
Jody Nagel