Music Blog

The Official Blog of the Music Conservatory of Westchester

A Very Special Musical Afternoon Performance

Monday, November 05, 2018

(from left to right) Kenneth Taber, Jean Newton, MCW Executive Director, Cheryl Breitkopf, Joel Breitkopf, MCW Board President, Aishling Quinn, Development Officer, Andrea Taber, Board Member, Cynthia Ahn, Victor Goldsmith, Board Member, and Carmen Forte, Board Member.

The Conservatory is so proud of our students who participated on Sunday, November 4th in a very special appreciation performance at the home of Board member Andrea Taber! We were thrilled to share our students’ musical talents with our Board of Trustees members and community leaders.

Thank you to our incredible faculty members Hyemin Kang, piano, and Nick Brust, saxophone, and Suzanne Wagor, Suzuki program coordinator for being part of the Conservatory’s Musical Afternoon for our Leaders & Friends. 

Conservatory Jazz Ensemble members Sarah Ashley Baldeon, vocals, James Cardosi, drums, Joanna Green Delgado, flute, Jacob Dunefsky, guitar, Adam Pascual, piano, and Hugo Vera, bass.

Suzuki violin students Erin Lang, Melissa Rosas, and Cecilia Valdes.

Solo instrumentalist Adrian Pascual, cello.

 Solo instrumentalist Cathy Stanton, clarinet.

Conservatory to Celebrate its Own Along with Stars at Golf & Tennis Classic

Monday, May 22, 2017

On June 26, the Music Conservatory of Westchester will hold a star-studded awards dinner following its 16th Annual Golf & Tennis Classic featuring Rock and Roll Hall of Fame icon Darlene Love and Academy Award-nominated actor Chazz Palminteri. Yet, it’s two members within the not-for-profit community music school’s community who arguably might be the biggest stars of the show.


Darlene Love


Gianna & Chazz Palminteri

Laurence Keiser, who joined the Conservatory’s board in 2000 and currently serves as its Vice President, will receive the White Plains’ organization’s Distinguished Leadership Award for his years of service. “He is incredibly generous in every way, supporting our mission, serving as Vice President, and connecting us to important community resources,” Jean Newton, the organization’s executive director, said.

“My philosophy may differ from that of some of my fellow board members, but we respect each other’s positions for the good of the Conservatory. I greatly respect the talents and dedication of those with whom I work,” Keiser said.


Laurence Keiser

And while he's “humbled” by receiving the honor, the White Plains resident stressed “I don’t do what I do for recognition. I do it out of love of music and this institution.”

Speaking of a love of music, Alice Cabral of Hawthorne will also have a big night on June 26. The 12-year-old voice student has shared her love of music with the Conservatory, and has honed her skills there since 2013. She will be the first recipient of the Darlene Love Vocal Scholarship that evening.

“Our Scholarship Program breaks down financial barriers, giving every student a chance to fulfill their musical dreams,” Newton said.  “Alice exemplifies this – she’s a dedicated, talented student and a wonderful young person.  We’re so proud of her.”


Alice Cabral

So is Alice’s mom Elsa Cabral.  “It is an honor and a privilege to receive this scholarship under the name of Darlene Love. Alice is a very capable girl, she is persistent and responsible. I always tell her that with hard work, she can make her dreams come true.”

She continued, “I extend my thanks to the Music Conservatory. Thank you very much for believing in her and giving her this great opportunity.”

Keiser and Cabral are part of a big evening for the Conservatory. Love will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award for her career in the arts. Chazz and wife Gianna will receive the Arts Achievement and Community Leadership Award for their extensive film and theatre credits, charitable work, and arts advocacy.

Performances by Tony-celebrated artists will follow the awards ceremony.  Two-time Tony nominee Constantine Maroulis will emcee and perform along with Tony nominees Robert Cuccioli and Mary Bridget Davies. Tony winner Adriane Lenox will also perform.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the school’s Music Therapy Institute, which provides music programs for those with special needs, its Healing Our Heroes program which provides music therapy for returning military veterans, and its Scholarship program for low-income students.

To purchase tickets or sponsorships, visit For more information or to schedule an interview with any of the honorees or performers, please contact Jon Chattman at


Save the Date for an Amazing Night!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

We are thrilled to announce
that on June 26, the Music Conservatory of Westchester will hold a star-studded awards ceremony in which it will honor Rock and Roll Hall of Fame legend, Darlene Love, and Oscar-nominated star of screen and stage, Chazz Palminteri and his wife Gianna Palminteri. It will also award a longtime member of our board of trustees, Laurence Keiser, for his leadership.

Following the awards presentation, a cabaret performance of Tony Award - celebrated artists will light up the night. This is an event you won't want to miss!

“Amazing Leader” Joel Breitkopf Named Conservatory Board President

Thursday, July 28, 2016


Joel Breitkopf, a Scarsdale resident with over 30 years of experience in the real estate industry, has been appointed president of the Music Conservatory of Westchester’s Board of Trustees. He succeeds Rodd Berro who held the post for five years.

Breitkopf, principal of Alchemy Properties in New York City, joined the board three years ago and served as its Vice President the last two, is the founding sponsor of the music therapy scholarship program for Veterans called Healing Our Heroes. The program, which launched in September 2013 and is an offshoot of the Conservatory’s Music Therapy Institute, provides music therapy and music instruction to military Veterans in the tristate area (NY, CT, NJ) who are returning home with a variety of psychological and physical injuries sustained while on active duty.

The Conservatory has worked with local Veterans centers and VA hospitals to continuously identify Veterans for this program, which has been a tremendous success and continues to grow helping more and more local Veterans from the Bronx to Northern Westchester. “I am honored and thrilled to become the President of the Board of Trustees for such a great community organization that dates back to 1929,” said Breitkopf. “The depth and breadth of the organization helps children, Veterans, adults and the elderly in connecting them to themselves, their peers and their communities through the universal language of music that we all share.”

Throughout his career, Breitkopf has been involved in numerous groups and charities including serving as past president of B'Nai Brith Real Estate. He joined Alchemy Properties in 1993. He is involved in all aspects of the company’s developments and investments from acquisition, finance, design, construction, marketing and strategic planning. He has financed well over $2 billion worth of real estate transactions and has acquired over 3,500,000 square feet of real estate during his career and is intimately involved with Alchemy’s current conversion of the national landmark Woolworth Building Tower to residences.

“Successful real estate development involves the orchestrated juggling of many constituencies and points of view that need to be addressed in a very positive and forthright manner,” said Breitkopf. “[This] is exactly what any established community organization, like the Conservatory strives for every day of the week.” He continued, “I look forward to working with a very experienced and sophisticated board as well as an amazing staff of music teachers and administrators as we continue to grow the organization.”

Jean Newton, the Conservatory’s Executive Director, said Breitkopf will be an amazing leader for the board and the school. “He really knows how to bring people together to get things done. He’s bringing all his passion and energy to his role as president, and he’s incredibly generous,” she said.