Creating a more inclusive early music community


EMA recognizes that:

  • Early music programming, curricula, and research are mainly Euro-centric, thereby excluding and discouraging some potential participants in the early music field.
  • Administrations, ensembles, and audiences fall short in representing the diverse demographics of The Americas. 
  • Due to historical and systemic inequities, access to early music is not readily available to everyone.

IDEA Task Force Mission 

The IDEA Task Force promotes EMA’s values of diversity and inclusion by advising EMA in its planning and implementation of strategic initiatives so that the early music field can begin to represent and embrace the many different communities of The Americas.

2021-22 IDEA Task Force Members 

Suzanne Bona
Vijay Chalasani
Joyce Chen
Karin Cuellar-Rendon
Patrick Dailey
Gus Denhard
Keats Dieffenbach

JungHae Kim
Breana McCullough
Patricia Ann Neely
Ian Pomerantz
Maria Romero Ramos*
Job Salazar Fonseca
Jonathan Woody

*EMA Board Member
Read task force member bios below.

Derek Tam (he/him), Ex Officio Member
Carmen Johnson-Pájaro (she/her), IDEA Task Force Coordinator

Please contact carmen@earlymusicamerica.org with suggestions, comments, and/or recommendations for our work in this area.

Events & News


No IDEA events scheduled at this time.


Resources

If you know of a resource or article that you believe belongs on this page, please contact EMA with your suggestion.

Related webinar recordings and performance videos can be found on the EMA Video Resources page.

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IDEA Task Force Members

Suzanne Bona

Suzanne Bona

she/her
Drawing on my training as a musician with a BM in Flute Performance from The University of Connecticut, I am a classical radio broadcaster. I am the host and executive producer of Sunday Baroque, a program I originated on WSHU Public Radio in my hometown of Fairfield, CT. Since 1998, Sunday Baroque has been nationally syndicated, with more than a quarter million weekly listeners on 230+ stations. I also continue to perform as a soloist and chamber musician.

Vijay Chalasani

Vijay Chalasani

he/him
I am a South Asian-American performer of modern and historical violas, scholar, teaching artist, and an advocate for diversity and equity. I am a founding member of Sinfonia Spirituosa and perform with ensembles on the west coast and in Colorado, and contribute to groundbreaking research in 19th century viola playing and performing styles. One of my greatest joys is sharing repertoire and playing styles that have been lost or ignored, and I look forward to continuing to open the field of early music to those who have been historically excluded with the EMA IDEA Taskforce.

Joyce Chen

Joyce Chen

I am a Taiwanese harpsichordist based in Philadelphia while pursuing a PhD in Historical Musicology at Princeton University. My research interests include acoustics, musical instruments, aesthetics, and performance practice; I am currently preparing for an online opinion piece for EMA on Asian practitioners of early music. As an avid performer, I was one of the featured soloists in the 2019 Early Music America Emerging Artist Showcase in Bloomington.

Karin Cuellar-Rendon

Karin Cuellar-Rendon

I am a Bolivian historical violinist and scholar interested in researching and presenting non-euro centered early music while recognizing the syncretism and connections with traditional music. I studied Historical Performance at Case Western Reserve University, Royal Academy of Music and currently pursue a PhD in Musicology at McGill University with a research focus on 19th c. performance practices in South America using as a case study the music of Peruvian composer Pedro Ximenez Abrill Tirado.

Patrick Dailey

Patrick Dailey

he/him
I’m a countertenor, voice professor, performing arts curator, choral conductor, and community/arts advocate. To quote Maya Angelou, “I come as one but stand as 10,000” meaning that wherever I show up, my ancestors and community show with me. As an artist and creator, I engage in early music, new music, opera of all styles, Black sacred music, jazz, soul, musical theater, dance, and social justice. I LOVE HBCUs and am an alum of Morgan State University and faculty of Tennessee State University. I believe that all deserve great art in an informed way but with agency and freedom.

Gus Denhard

Gus Denhard

he/him
I have been the Executive Director of Early Music Seattle (Formerly Early Music Guild of Seattle) since 2000 and I’m graduate of the doctoral program in early music performance at Indiana University. My performance interests include Trio Guadalevin and The Eurasia Consort – a reflection of his position that early music should include all of the world’s deep-rooted music traditions.

Keats Diefffenbach

Keats Diefffenbach

they/them or any
I am the violist of the Cramer Quartet and am active as violinist, violist, and curator in both modern and historical settings. I’m a recent graduate of Juilliard’s Historical Performance program and now live on unceded Abenaki land known as Southeastern Vermont. Having often felt out of place amongst the exclusionary culture of traditional classical music, I found a sense of belonging within our community of historical performers. As some of the most inventive and imaginative voices in classical music, early musicians are uniquely positioned to be leaders in pursuing equity, and I’m honored to join the IDEA Task Force in this work. I am bisexual and transmasculine, and I use any pronouns.

JungHae Kim

JungHae Kim

she/her
I am a Korean-born harpsichordist living and working in San Francisco. I completed my Bachelor’s at Peabody Conservatory, a Masters in Historical Performance at Oberlin Conservatory, studied for a year with Gustav Leonhardt in Amsterdam, and completed a Performer’s Certificate at Sweelinck Conservatory. I am co-director of MusicSources Center for Historically Informed Performance in Berkeley, CA. I maintain a busy solo and chamber music performing career and teach historical keyboard, music theory, musicianship and continuo realization. I coach chamber music, give lectures, and teach masterclasses throughout the U.S., in Europe, and in Asia.

Breana McCullough

Breana McCullough

she/her
Ayukîi nanêefyiiv, my name is Breana McCullough and I am a Karuk violist and scholar currently researching Indigenous representation in Early Music. I hold degrees in Performance and Woman and Gender Studies from the University of Colorado, Boulder. I started to pursue my research at the Jacobs School of Music in the Historical Performance Institute but have since moved to Los Angeles to pursue my PhD in Ethnomusicology at UCLA. I am looking forward to contributing to the elevation of intersectional perspectives, alternative histories, and diversifying the field of Early Music with the IDEA task force.

Patricia Ann Neely

Patricia Ann Neely

she/her
I’m an early-bowed string player and teacher who, for several decades, has specialized in the viola da gamba, violone, vielle, and baroque bass. I hold a BA in music from Vassar College and an MFA in Historical Performance from Sarah Lawrence College. I’ve played with many early music ensembles here and abroad, and I currently direct Abendmusik – New York’s early music string band, which presents a three-concert series in New York City. I’ve performed with several well-known ensembles including Sequentia, Tempesta di Mare, Washington Bach Consort, Boston Early Music Festival Orchestra, Rheinische Kantorei Köln, among others. I am a member of the Board of EMA and the Viola da Gamba Society of America.

Ian Pomerantz

Ian Pomerantz

he/him or they/them
I am a friend and colleague to musical communities around the world. As an activist for tolerance and inclusivity, I see music as an essential element in bridging communities and addressing the social divides that rank among the major challenges of our time. I am also a professional bass-baritone and scholar of Jewish music and baroque vocal music, and my musical life resounds with French baroque opera, Yiddish art song, and Sephardic lullabies. I enjoy illuminating interfaith perspectives in Historical Performance and making beautiful music in the HIP and Jewish communities around the world.

Maria Romero Ramos

Maria Romero Ramos

she/her
I’m a Venezuelan-born violinist based in Nashville, TN, and I started my musical training at age 12 in the El Sistema music program. I am concertmaster of Music City Baroque, collaborate with modern and period ensembles around the nation, and I teach modern and baroque violin at Vanderbilt University. I enjoy bridging the pedagogical gap between modern and period performance and I am devoted to access and representation in music education.

Job Salazar Fonseca

Job Salazar Fonseca

I was a member of the Monterrey Symphony Orchestra (OSUANL) and Opera Nuevo León, and previously on the Violin Faculty at the Music Department of the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León (UANL). I’ve performed at the Chamber Music Festival of Nuevo León, Festival Internacional de Música Mexicana, CONARTE, KBYU Radio, Radio Nuevo León. I currently perform with The Unitas Ensemble, Harvard Baroque Chamber Orchestra, Crescendo, American Baroque Orchestra, Portland Bach Experience and The Halfmoon. I’m on the faculty at The Powers Music School. I hold degrees from BYU-Idaho, The Boston Conservatory at Berklee and The Longy School of Music of Bard College.

Jonathan Woody

Jonathan Woody

he/him
I’m Jonathan Woody, bass-baritone, originally from Prince George’s County, Md. Since 2010, I’ve been based in Brooklyn, NY, where I perform primarily early and new music on concert and chamber stages. I’ve taken my work on the road around the US and Canada, performing with leading historically-informed vocal and instrumental ensembles. I also work as a composer and draw inspiration from the intersection of early and contemporary musical languages.


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