Dušanka Gavrilović was born in Sremska Mitrovica, where she finished Elementary Music School "Petar Krancevic" in the class of prof. Milda Kuzminac. She continued her education in Belgrade at the "Stanković" Music School in the class of prof. Slobodan Prodanović and in the Music School "Mokranjac" in the class of prof. Aleksandar Bauer. She graduated from the Department of Piano with a grade of 10 for the major subject at the Faculty of Music in Belgrade, where she obtained a master's degree in the class of prof. Branko Penčić. During her schooling, she won numerous awards at competitions in the country and abroad, and performed at concerts as a soloist and as a member of chamber ensembles. She started her pedagogical work as a second-year student at the Music School “Petar Krancevic” in Sremska Mitrovica. Her students are winners of numerous awards at competitions in the country and abroad, as well as laureates of the Republic Competition of Students of Music and Ballet Schools of Serbia, International Competition "Davorin Jenko" in Belgrade, International Competition of Young Pianists in Sabac, Piano Festival in Sremska Mitrovica, Isidor Bajic Festival "in Novi Sad, etc. For a number of years, a large number of her students have been the winners of the Saint Sava Charter, which the City of Sremska Mitrovica awards to the most successful students as well as winners of charters and awards awarded by the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina. In addition to pedagogical work, she is also engaged in cultural, artistic and concert activities. She plays in the “Quartet Maestre" with her colleagues, professors of piano, flute and tambourine, with whom she has had a number of concerts over the past five years, two of which are charity events and a large number educational. Through various projects, the Maestre contributes to the popularization of artistic music in Serbia. Dušanka Gavrilović is the organizer of numerous concerts and seminars, and since 2018 she has been the Artistic Director of the Piano Festival in Sremska Mitrovica, which is being held for the eighth time in May this year. She is also the director of the online International Competition for Young Pianists “Piccolo Piano Talents.” In addition to working at the "Petar Krancevic" primary school, she is also engaged in pedagogical work within the Association for Creative Development of Children "Piccolo", which she founded in 2004. Over the past 18 years of working with "Piccolo", hundreds of children have grown up singing in a choir or playing piano or guitar. She writes and composes songs for the Piccolo Children's Choir, which were recorded in 2018 on the first CD of the choir "Srećosnili suncokrili". During the past few years, the choir had numerous performances as well as a concert in the grand hall of the Kolarac endowment in May 2019. The choir also had notable performances at the Sava Center in Belgrade, the Novi Sad Synagogue and at the Zmaj's Children's Games in Novi Sad, as well as in other cities in Serbia. She recorded for RTV and RTS. She is a member of the Rotary Club of Sremska Mitrovica since 2017. She is the holder of the "Paul Harris Fellow" award, which is given to individuals who have shown special care for the community.
During her presidential term in the Rotary year 2020/21, the Rotary Club Sremska Mitrovica donated a new half-concert piano to the Music School "Petar Krancevic" in Sremska Mitrovica as part of the "88 notes of love" project.
Rachel Gauci recently graduated with a Master of Music in Piano Performance from the prestigious Royal Conservatoire of Scotland under the tutelage of Prof Fali Pavri, Sinae Lee and Sasa Donaldson. Praised for her ‘richness and warmth’ and ‘generous emotional expression’, she has been lauded by musicians and scholars as a ‘dedicated and gifted pianist’. Rachel has performed in various concerts and festivals across Malta, France, Austria and the UK. She also had the unique opportunity to perform in a masterclass with composer Thierry Escaich, where she performed one of his works. In 2019, Rachel also premiered an ensemble work by Olivier Calmel for a silent film in Avignon, France. As a collaborative pianist, Rachel has enjoyed working with vocal coaches Malcolm Martineau, Pascal le Corre and Lydia Brown.
Throughout her artistic journey she has been invited to perform in several masterclasses with acclaimed musicians such as Petras Geniušas, Yuri Didenko, Kenneth Hamilton, Aaron Shorr, Roy Howat and Mikhail Petukhov. Rachel has also been awarded several scholarships from Arts Council Malta to attend a series of international masterclasses in South-West France namely ‘Music at Albignac’ (2018) and ‘Music at Château d’Aix’ (2019, 2022) with Paul Roberts and Charles Owen. She was also selected to attend two weeks of masterclasses and performances at the coveted Mozarteum University in Salzburg, on full scholarship. A native of Malta, Rachel forged an unconventional career path where she simultaneously studied piano under the tutorship of Gisèle Grima and eventually graduated with a B.Sc. (Hons.) Pharmaceutical Science from the University of Malta. She also obtained the Licentiate of the Royal Schools of Music (LRSM) in piano performance. Rachel, then furthered her studies at the Conservatoire in Avignon (France) with Véronique Muzy and Andrea Corazziari where she obtained the Diplôme d'études musicales. This was then followed by postgraduate studies in Scotland. Rachel is the recipient of several competitive scholarships that have supported her studies abroad namely from Malta Arts Scholarships and Janatha Stubbs Foundation. She is also a BOV Joseph Calleja Foundation Scholar. Rachel combines a love for performing with a passion for pedagogy. She icurrently reading for a Master of Pharmacy at the University of Malta and also teaches piano and chamber music at the Malta School of Music.
Martyna Kučinskaitė was born in 1996 in Kaunas, Lithuania. With both of her parents being pianists, she started playing the piano at the age of 3 and, two years later, enrolled in A. Kačanauskas Music School to study piano under the guidance of her mother-teacher, Aušra Kučinskienė. Born with a passion for music, Martyna later continued her studies at Vytautas Magnus University (VDU) Music Academy, culminating in a Bachelor’s degree in Performance Art (Piano) in 2019. Concurrently, her inquisitive mind led her to also acquire a Bachelor’s degree in Lithuanian Philology and Publishing from VDU Faculty of Humanities, where her scholarly exploration delved into the Expression of Identity in the Latest Works of Lithuanian Women Writers. In 2021, Martyna set her sights higher and earned a Master of Music degree in Music Performance (Piano) from CUNY Brooklyn College Conservatory of Music, continuing her higher education studies with Professor Gabrielius Alekna, who is based in New York City. Martyna eagerly embraced diverse professional experiences that allowed her to share her talents and knowledge, all the while studying and teaching young students of her own. From her role as a musical ensemble director at VDU “Rasa” Gymnasium in Kaunas (2014- 2017) to her tenure as a concertmaster for choirs and choral ensembles at CUNY Brooklyn College, Martyna demonstrated her dedication to nurturing musical talents and orchestrating harmonious performances. Her teaching journey extended beyond music as she assumed the role of a Lithuanian language text editor, facilitating effective communication through precise language.
Martyna’s passion for education remained steadfast as she took on various teaching positions, imparting her expertise in both music and language. She enriched young minds with the art of piano playing at institutions like Brooklyn Musical Arts and Brownstone Music Lessons. Simultaneously, her commitment to preserving her cultural heritage was evident as she became a devoted Lithuanian language instructor for adults in New York and later at the online Lithuanian school, PaLimo.
Martyna is a versatile and accomplished musician and educator who has traversed a journey rich with academic accomplishments and professional achievements.