Eastern Senior Youth Orchestra

Wendy Bissinger is a cellist and Suzuki cello teacher in Greenville, where she maintains a private studio. She headed the strings program at Arendell Parrott Academy in Kinston. She has written two method books for cello titled Sequenced Scale Studies and Scaling the Tenor Clef Dragon. She also arranges cello ensembles and writes compositions for various other strings, and publishes under her own label, Boshu Press. She is a graduate of East Carolina University with degrees in Music Education and Music Therapy.

Dr. Gregory Hurley is an Associate Professor of Music Education at East Carolina University and is active as a music educator, clinician, and violist. His varied teaching background includes seven years of string teaching in the public schools of Raleigh, North Carolina. Before coming to ECU, Hurley was a faculty member and chair of music education at the University of Northern Colorado. Dr. Hurley is a past president of the Colorado and North Carolina units of the American String Teachers Association. He has published in the Dialogue in Instrumental Music Education, the Quarterly Journal of Music Teaching and Learning, and the American String Teacher, and he has performed in the Greensboro, Austin, Madison, and the Greeley symphonies. He continues to work with pre-college string students through the ECU String Project and as the conductor of the Eastern Junior Youth Orchestra.

Dr. John O’Brien came to Greenville and ECU in 1985. He is a Professor of piano and early music at ECU and he also serves as organist and choirmaster at First Presbyterian Church in Kinston. Dr. O’Brien began conducting the Eastern Youth Orchestra in 1986. He grew up in a musical family. Both of his parents are pianists and his three brothers are all string players. He grew up studying piano, violin, and flute, and playing string quartets with his brothers. When Dr. O’Brien is not teaching, conducting, or performing, he is usually working on his 1901 Victorian house.