The SCL Announces Mentees for the 2020-2021 NY Mentor Program


SCL NEW YORK Mentor Program: 2020-2021 Mentees 

The SCL New York Mentor Program serves as an introduction to the screen music industry for selected SCL Associate members. The SCL New York Mentor Committee has made its final selections from a large number of applicants, and welcomes the following Associate members into the New York Mentor Program 2020-2021. The committee would also like to thank the many applicants who took the time to submit, and encourages them to do so again in the future, should they remain eligible.

The program runs from November 2020 through May 2021, with a break for the holidays. 

Our East Coast-based mentors are thoroughly looking forward to sharing their experience and expertise with the SCL New York Mentee Class of 2020-2021.

Congratulations to all!  
Nipun Bhatnagar is a composer, producer and pianist born and raised in New Delhi, India. A newly-minted New Yorker, Nipun spent the last three years studying Film Scoring at Berklee College of Music. He previously trained as a physicist in New Delhi, and has a keen interest in the interface between music and technology. He enjoys writing for unconventional ensembles from across the world. Nipun’s most recent project was Hush Hush, a documentary on child sexual abuse in India, for which he was also the dubbing engineer. While a student at Berklee, he received the Soren Christensen Award that recognizes “a senior student of extraordinary talent.” As Nipun’s career progresses, he hopes to bring more experimental methods of electronic composition to his film scoring.
Grace-Mary Burega is a media composer for film, TV and video games, and a woodwind multi-instrumentalist: saxophone, clarinet and flute. Burega is currently a Masters of Music in film scoring student at Berklee College of Music (online). She completed her Berklee undergraduate degree in 2020, receiving the Robert Share Award for excellence in film scoring. She has composed music for the organization Women in Film and Video New England, as well as music for climate change PSAs. Burega has scored short films for a variety of genres: horror, comedy, experimental, and documentary. Her music traverses the genres of orchestral, jazz, and electronic. Her goal: to grab the heart of the film audience and provoke their passion for the message of the film.
Chilean-born María del Sol is a film composer and classically trained pianist. Her work recently received best Original Score awards from both the Florence Film Awards and FLOW Film Festival. From the latter, she was also awarded Best Instrumental Composition for her piano and mixed electronics debut single “Funeral for Past Loves.”
With a passion for music inspired by story, her scores boldly combine lyrical beauty with orchestral power and edgy electronic textures – creating soundtracks that emotionally capture both the intimate and the epic. María is in her final year of the graduate Screen Scoring Program at NYU Steinhardt, where she studies under Chris Hajian, John Kaefer, and Suzana Peric. 
Colton Dodd is an American composer based in New York. His background as a classically trained pianist, music director, and music administrator contribute to his understanding of the collaborative nature of music-making. Across his work in film, video games, and dance, he is recognized for his ability to tune into his collaborators’ creative impulses. His music is known for its complex layers, hybrid influences, and adaptability to a wide variety of mediums, moods, and styles. As assistant to composer Paul Chihara, Colton has been credited on the album “Paul Chihara Collection Volume 4,” has worked on music editing and writing additional music for international film projects. He has scored numerous short film, dance, theatre, video game, and animation projects. He has arranged for Brooklyn Rider, Orpheus Chamber Ensemble, the Vietnam National Symphony Orchestra and London Symphony Orchestra. As Assistant Music Director at Vail Dance Festival, Colton works with leading voices in the contemporary performing arts, including Caroline Shaw, Damian Woetzel, and Kurt Crowley.
Driven by storytelling through music and enthusiasm for collaboration, Juan Dussán is a screen composer based in New York. His sonic world gravitates towards narrative short films, many of which have played at major film festivals, including the New York Short Film Festival, the NFFTY, and others.  A recipient of the prestigious Alan Menken Award, Juan completed his studies at the NYU Screen Scoring graduate program under Professor Mark Suozzo and Dr. Ron Sadoff. He participated in the ASCAP/Columbia University Film Scoring Workshops, and will be a fellow member of the 2021 Los Angeles Film Conducting Intensive under Angel Velez, Conrad Pope an other industry luminaries. Juan studied classical piano performance in his native Colombia, and his music is highly influenced by the heritage of his formative years.
Daniel Farrell is an emerging talent in the world of film and media music. His music has been heard in feature films, shorts, television, podcasts, and video games. He recently scored the feature Fade In – a film about a Latina and Muslim woman who fall in love and the social ramifications. He composed the theme music for several podcasts, including The Backlight Podcast and Things (Un)Said. 
He is the recipient of several awards, most notably Chamber Music OC’s 2018 Emerging Artist award. Daniel holds a Master of Music in Screen Scoring from New York University and a Bachelor of Music in Music Composition & Theory from Jacksonville University. Based in New York, Daniel is also the Audio Curator and Reviewer for the royalty-free library Motion Array.
Bryan Garbe is a composer and multi-instrumentalist based in Brooklyn. A professional studio and touring musician specializing in drums and percussion, ha has endorsements with Remo Drum Heads, Vater Sticks, Dream Cymbals and Luna Guitars and Ukuleles. Garbe’s latest project
C A S T O F F features creative steel pan. As an educator, Bryan has given clinics and performances at The Royal Academy of Music in London, The Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin, schools in Beijing and universities throughout the USA. His band Oak & Ash has opened for Bon Jovi at Madison Square Garden, Phillip Phillips at the Beacon Theatre and many more. Bryan is a classically trained percussionist and a member of the Percussive Arts Society. He was Vice President of the Connecticut 
chapter, and creator of the CT PAS Artist Spotlight Series that aims to promote and connect drummers, percussionists, and ensembles. 
Jesénia Jackson is a composer, artist, songwriter and producer who is known for her simple but captivating melodies. Born and raised in Maryland, Jesénia uses her background in Gospel, Classical, and GoGo music fo inform her music. Jesénia’s recent film scores have appeared in several festivals. As an artist, she strives to compose and produce music that positively impacts and connects with the people who hear her music.
A native of Austin, Texas, Michelangelo Rodriguez is a composer for film, television, and multimedia based in New York City. With a focus on writing film music, he has scored several award-winning films, documentaries, and commercials. He also writes music for Move Music LLC’s music library. In addition to being featured on the PBS Arts in Context documentary, Young Composers, Michelangelo was a part of the Third and Fourth Annual Texas Young Composer’s Concert, where he had two premieres with the Austin Symphony. He was the recent ecipient of the ASCAP Foundation Vic Mizzy Scholarship, which assists a gradate student in NYU Steinhardt’s Film Scoring program. Michelangelo graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Composition from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music in 2019, and is currently pursuing a Masters of Music in Screen Scoring at New York University. Besides music, Michelangelo enjoys basketball, art, and cats.
Andrea Celeste Salazar is a multimedia composer whose music spans film scores, concert works, and songs. Her compositions blend her orchestral violin background with contemporary styles to create lush and emotionally-charged sound worlds. Andrea has collaborated on numerous independent films and multimedia projects, providing original scores, sound design, and violin recordings for various soundtracks. Her interest in audio-visual has also led to collaborations with dance companies and choreographers. Andrea has lived all over the world in such diverse countries such as Honduras, South Africa, Thailand, and Germany. Her love of violin from a young age led to performances at music festivals throughout Europe, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East. She recently graduated with a Master’s degree in Screen Scoring from New York University.
Alex Symcox is a British composer for film based in New York City. His music has voiced films featured at festivals worldwide, including the Venice Film Festival (Greenland Melting, a VR documentary produced by PBS, Frontline & Emblematic Group); the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival (Curandera and Citric Acid); Outfest LA, Marthas Vineyard African American Film Festival (Wonder ) and the Santa Barbara International Film Festival (After Class). Alex is known for his sensitivity towards storytelling, bringing a musical voice to both culturally relevant and significant films. 
Militia Vox is an avant-dark songwriter, composer, visual artist, and front woman for all-girl heavy metal sensation Judas Priestess. Her most recent works are via her ongoing project “The Villainess”, a full-length album, visual and immersive art installation in which Militia creates, directs, edits, produces and performs. Her unique voice and musical perspective has garnered praise from legends Dee Snider, Corey Glover, Kembra Pfahler and Kathleen Hanna. 
Militia has recorded, toured and performed with some of the best in the business: Twisted Sister, Cyndi Lauper, Living Colour, Nancy Sinatra, John Petrucci, L7, Sandra Bernhard, Nona Hendrix, Paul Schaffer and more. She was the 1st Host/VJ of color on Fuse and Hosted their first reality TV show, Heavy Metal Makeover. Militia has starred in Off-Broadway, European Tours and National touring rock musicals. She is featured in several books and films about music, including Betty: They Say I’m Different. She speaks regularly at colleges and conferences, and her Militious Productions produces music and film events. She is a District Advocate for The Recording Academy. 
Growing up surrounded by Lebanese parties, orchestras, French albums by Legrand, the great scores of Desplat and Williams, and opportunities to perform plenty of classical and jazz piano, Alex Wakim‘s diverse musical tastes have led him to explore fresh avenues in writing for the screen and the stage. Based in New York, Wakim has recently completed several independent media projects, Frayed Roots, Raindance Film Festival Official Selection, Kansas Theatre Works Podcast including an original podcast production of Macbeth, Not Only You and An American in Beirut with writer Chantal Bilodeau. Winner of the 2020 NYU Film Scoring Award, Alex’s is time at NYU Steinhardt’s Graduate Screen Scoring program has proven to be a powerful launching pad for his career.