Catherine Beredjick (French) was born and raised in France and received her Ph.D. in English from the University of Paris. She relocated to the U.S. and taught French at Cornell University, the United Nations, the French Alliance and other language schools. She also works as an English-French translator. She enjoys working with students of all ages and levels as she introduces them to the joy of speaking another language while they discover a new culture. She believes language learning should be fun and practical and that a teacher must patiently guide students as they gain confidence in their abilities.
Gilda Butler (Ceramics) received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, with a specialization in pottery, from the University of South Florida in 1976. During her 25 year career in graphics, advertising and marketing, she continued to pursue her personal affinity for clay. In 2001, she established Gildasleeves, Ltd. and began teaching art pottery classes. An ardent instructor, several of her students have gone on to juried shows and one received a pottery scholarship for college. Her own work shows a strong graphic influence but she possesses an eclectic appreciation of all pottery and encourages her students to pursue their personal preferences. “The tactile and therapeutic nature of clay enables it to be an art medium that can be gratifying to beginning students without years of study.”
A member of the Latin Guitar Guild of Tampa Bay, Matthew Jones (Music/Guitar) performs regularly as a flamenco/jazz musician in Ybor City and beyond. You may have seen him perform with his band, The MJ3, a 90s rock trio, or as a solo performer at any number of venues around town. Jones played the guitar in MAS Community Theatre’s production of All Shook Up in July 2015 at the Carrollwood Cultural Center, and is thrilled to do more with the Center. (Matthew also teaches private lessons.)
Nancy Kirkpatrick (Art) is a lifelong creative with a passion for helping students reach their creative potential. She has been teaching art professionally for 25 years across multiple mediums and age groups. She received her BFA at the University of South Florida 1993, and has continued her studies at the Ringling School of Art and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She utilizes the experiential nature of art to explore subconscious imagery. She is interested in drawing on the artist within rather than planning objective paintings. Her classes are designed to help students find their own spontaneous expression while learning the essential elements of design. She will facilitate the individual’s journey toward creating authentic art by tapping into those images that lie beneath the surface. She is also the Curator of the Galleries of the Carrollwood Cultural Center.
Beth LaBaren-Root (Dance) is an established dance professional with a Masters of Public Administration and Non-Profit Leadership and a B.A. in Dance from Western Michigan University. Her areas of expertise include non-profit administration, arts integrated education, teaching, choreography, directing and interdisciplinary collaborations. Beth was named Education Director at the Carrollwood Cultural Center team in March 2015. (Beth also teaches private lessons.)
Ruth Levy (Computer) spent 15 years working with the Salvation Army where she received her training and background in computer technology. She taught computer software to employees and staff throughout the Florida region. She is currently the volunteer coordinator at the Carrollwood Cultural Center and has served as producer for many of the Center’s MAS Community Theatre productions. She has been married to Allen Levy for more than 50 years. They have one daughter, Jaqi, and have had the privilege of hosting several exchange students from other countries. Allen often says that “he is father of one and Ruth is mother of many.” (Ruth also teaches private lessons.)
Ronald Meyers (Music/Piano) began his musical education at the age of five, started playing professionally at 14, and started teaching at 17. He is non-traditional piano instructor, influenced by the Suzuki Method for 35 years and teaching in the Montessori School System for 30 years. Suzuki’s philosophy is that a person learns to speak a language first by mimicking and doing, then learning to read and studying the rules of grammar. The same should apply to learning music: play first, then read notes and learn theory. Ron believes in self expression and encourages students to experiment with their own musical ideas. (Ron also teaches private lessons.)
Sharon Orbin (Yoga) graduated from USF in 1982 and has lived in Tampa ever since. Sharon has been a preschool teacher for 30 years and has loved every moment. She has an Early Child Care Association certificate, and is certified in CPA and first aid. Sharon is also a certified Yoga teacher through Yoga Alliance, a National association for yoga teachers. She has been with the Carrollwood Cultural Center since 2009.
Gainor Roberts (Art, Digital Photography) is an American artist known for still life and landscape paintings that explore color, forms and symbolism. A classically trained artist in the realist tradition, Gainor uses impressionist brush techniques and intense color. Gainor is a member of North Tampa Arts League, TESA (The Exhibiting Society of Artists), The Egg Tempera Society, and is an honorary member of the New England Monotype Guild. In 2007 I was elected to the National League of American Pen Women as an artist member. READ MORE (Gainor also teaches private lessons.)
Heather Rosenbach (Ceramics) is a ceramic artist who recently earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of South Florida. She is primarily a handbuilder, focusing on large conceptual forms that deconstruct the utility of vessels. She has been trained in glaze chemistry and in atmospheric kiln firing (including Western and Eastern Raku). Rosenbach has previously worked as a teaching assistant and shop technician assistant at USF.
Jack Simpson (Woodcarving) is the retired Director of Environmental, Health & Safety. A self taught wood carver, he is the founder / president of Tampa Wood Carvers Club and a member of National Wood Carvers Association & Suncoast Carving Club.
Michele Stone (Art) has created art for events at the Straz Center, curated art at the Shimberg Playhouse, painted cakes at Cakes by Marie, painted faces at Publix and Whole Foods, won awards at the Tampa Bay Business for the Arts Chalk Walk, painted residential and commercial murals in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Wesley Chapel, chaired Reflections Committee at the Northwest Elementary PTA, taught adult classes at the West Tampa Center for the Arts, Costa Del Sol Assisted Living Facility and children’s classes at the Bob Sierra YMCA, Wilderness Preserve Lodge in Land O’ Lakes, Centre for Girls various schools through The Children’s Board of Hillsborough County and the Carrollwood Cultural Center. (Michele also teaches private lessons.)
Margret Thomas (Art) received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of South Florida, specializing in drawing and painting. She has worked with elementary and junior high school students, teaching crafts, art camps as well as basic reading and writing skills to English Language Learners. Since then, she has explored several paint mediums but mainly works with acrylic and oil paints. She has studied the masters from Classical to Impressionist, and from early American to current Representational painters. Margret is a member of The North Tampa Arts League.
Aaron Washington (Theatre) is originally from Ohio where he spent years as a director and choreographer for many organizations. While in Tampa, Aaron has performed at (and with) Busch Gardens Tampa, The Straz Center- Jaeb Theatre, Show Palace Dinner Theatre, MAD Theatre, and MAS Theatre at the Carrollwood Cultural Center. As a Director/Choreographer, he has worked on such shows as Smokey Joe’s Cafe, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, The Music Man, Cabaret and All Shook Up, to name a few. Aaron is a certified drama teacher for grades 6-12, a member of the Florida Theatre Education Association and an active instructor/adjudicator for Florida Thespians. (Aaron also teaches private lessons.)
Miriam Zohar (Ceramics) attended the University of Florida, graduating with a degree in Interior Design at the College of Architecture. While in college, she took many classes focusing on art and design. Miriam has always been drawn to art and clay, taking classes in drawing and sculpture throughout her life. Several years ago, she returned to her education in wheel thrown pottery under the tutelage of Master Potter, Gilda Butler. It is here at the Carrollwood Cultural Center that Miriam has rekindled her love of clay and all that it can do. She welcomes the chance to be able to share her love and knowledge of the art of crafting pottery on the potters wheel.