top of page

Organization & People

Board of Directors




Co-Artistic Director


Pia Liptak has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in Europe and the United States. For almost two decades she served as the concertmaster of the University of Rochester Symphony Orchestra and she is currently on the faculty of the Hochstein School where she teaches violin and is the co-chair of the string department. She was previously a member of the Odense Symphony Orchestra and concertmaster of the Fynske Sinfonietta in Denmark. She has also performed as a soloist with orchestra and played in numerous chamber music ensembles. Collaborations have included the Liptak-Beaudette Duo and the Liptak-Chang Duo. 


She is actively involved in the new music scene and has performed and recorded several CDs including three with Japanese koto-player Ryuko Mizutani in Duo vio-LINK-oto. She is also part of the recording "Starts.Stories.Song" with music for voice and ensemble by Eastman faculty composers.

Pia holds degrees in piano and violin from the Carl Nielsen Academy in Odense, Denmark her native country and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Eastman School of Music. 




Co-Artistic Director

Principal Oboe

Kathleen Suher is co-founder and co-artistic director of Cordancia with Pia Liptak and serves as principal oboist.  She performed with the University of Rochester Symphony Orchestra for 24 years starting as an undergraduate.  Past teachers have included Richard Killmer and Anita Brandon.  


A graduate of Syracuse University College of Law, she is a commercial real estate attorney with Bond, Schoeneck & King in the Rochester office. 



Director/Board Member

Principal Violist

Keiko Vann serves as a director for Cordancia and has been principal violist since its first concert in 2009. She is also the principal violist of the University of Rochester Symphony Orchestra where she has played for nearly thirty years. She also performs with the Penfield Symphony Orchestra, and, proficient on both violin and viola, Keiko plays in a number

of local chamber music ensembles.


Keiko has a private teaching studio with both violin and viola students. She substitutes as a teaching assistant in the Penfield Elementary Schools, primarily in the special education classrooms.



Rachel Lauber is Director of Orchestras at the University at Buffalo and

instructor of conducting at the Eastman Community Music School. She

has served as Music Director of the Finger Lakes Symphony, Livingston

Symphony (MI) and the University of Michigan Campus Symphony,

Nazareth College Orchestra, and as conductor of the Detroit Symphony

Civic Orchestra. She has appeared as guest conductor with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, the Slee Sinfonietta, the Holland Symphony Orchestra (MI) and has conducted throughout Italy.


An active educator, she has conducted Conference All-State Festival and

Area All-State Festival orchestras throughout the United States. Beyond the podium, Ms. Lauber served as director of the Detroit Symphony’s Unmasked Series, collaborating with guest conductors on multi-media enhanced performances. Most recently she has been lecturing at the University of Michigan under a Mellon grant for the University Musical Society. The lectures are part of the pre-concert audience engagement program and have focused on performances of Valery Gergiev with the Mariinsky Orchestra and Simon Rattle with the Berlin Philharmonic.

Ms. Lauber received her doctorate in orchestral conducting at the

University of Michigan, and has also studied with Gunther Schuller and

Helmuth Rilling. She studied in Italy at the Accademia Musicale Chigiana in Siena and the Catania International Conductor’s Workshop in Sicily.




Casey Springstead earned two degrees from the Eastman School of Music and he is a music educator with the West Irondequoit Schools since 1999. As a guest conductor, he has worked with area ensembles including Cordancia, the Nazareth College Concert Band, Irondequoit Concert Band, Brighton Symphony Orchestra, Rochester’s New Horizons Band, and junior high and senior high All-County bands in Western New York. 


A faculty member at the Hochstein School of Music and Dance since 2003 and the 2017 recipient of the Faculty Service Award, Mr. Springstead is the Director of the Hochstein Youth Symphony Orchestra. He has led the HYSO on tours of France, Austria, Spain, and Portugal, and in 2014, the orchestra participated in a live-via-satellite exchange concert with a youth orchestra from one of Rochester’s sister cities in Lithuania. Previous appointments at Hochstein include Director of the Youth Wind Symphony and Junior Wind Symphony, and Assistant Director of Philharmonia.  For several years, he also conducted ensemble.twenty.21, a contemporary music ensemble comprised of faculty from Hochstein, Nazareth College, and Roberts Wesleyan College as well as musicians from the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra.  Performances included a live broadcast on WXXI-FM’s “Live from Hochstein” series.


Mr. Springstead is a hornist with the Penfield Symphony Orchestra since 1999 and has performed with several area ensembles, including Mercury Opera, the Gregory Kunde Chorale, Ad Hoc, Cordancia, and as a member of many pit orchestras and ceremonial brass quintets.  He is also active as a collaborative pianist, accompanying Rochester-area high school and college musicians for recitals and auditions.  Originally from Hammondsport, NY, he lives in Webster with his wife and fellow musician/educator, Kirsta Rodean, and their two children, Orson and Malin.



Administrative coordinators



Program Coordinator



Elena Sloman.jpg


Publicity Designer, Social Media




Orchestra Librarian and Archivist


bottom of page