Founder and Editor
Christine S. Escobar is a digital communications strategist, journalist, and web designer experienced in music administration, music communications, publicity, marketing, and film and entertainment promotion. Her experience includes music administration, music communications, publicity, film and entertainment promotion, and assisting small businesses and freelance professionals with marketing services and products. She has a long history of supporting and advocating for youth music education personally and professionally.
Lauded as “vibrant” and “gifted” (Chicago Classical Review), Chicago-born Filipino-American cellist Ezra Escobar maintains a prolific output as a multigenre cellist, composer, arranger, and music producer. A prizewinner at the DePaul Concerto Festival, the Chinese Fine Arts Society Music Festival in Honor of Confucius, and the Walgreens National Concerto Competition, Ezra’s concert appearances also include solos with the Oistrakh Symphony of Chicago, the Lake Forest Civic Orchestra, the Young Steinway Concert Series, the Evanston Chamber Music Festival, and the Waukegan Chamber Music Society, and he has served as principal cello with the Mannes Orchestra and the Kankakee Valley Symphony. Ezra currently studies at the Mannes School of Music with Marcy Rosen, having previously studied with Dr. Tanya Carey at the Music Institute of Chicago.
Originally from Memphis, TN, Garrett McQueen is a bassoonist who has performed with ensembles including the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. Today, Garrett is the host and producer of nationally-syndicated radio programs at the intersection of race, contemporary culture and “classical” music, and is the co-host and Executive Producer of the TRILLOQUY podcast, noted by the New York Times as “required listening”. Additionally, Garrett maintains board, leadership, and artistic advisory positions with institutions including the American Composers Forum, the Black Opera Alliance, the Lakes Area Music Festival and the Gateways Music Festival. Garrett holds a Bachelor of Music from the University of Memphis and a Master of Music from the University of Southern California.
Originally from Uniondale, New York, 24-year old first-generation Filipino-American Jay Julio (they/them) is a multi-instrumentalist, writer, and composer-arranger currently based in NYC. Jay is a member of the Tucson Symphony, Palm Beach Opera Orchestra, and Symphony in C, substitute violist with the Phoenix, Memphis, Virginia, Fort Worth, and Dallas Symphony Orchestras, and has been invited to play with the American Composers Orchestra, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, PROTESTRA, and the Metropolis Ensemble. They were recipient of a 2020 Music Academy of the West Fast Pitch Award for their music-meets-prison-analysis organization Sound Off: Music for Bail, which was also recently awarded a 2021 Juilliard Career Grant to further an upcoming recording project highlighting string quartet music of Florence Price, George Walker, Yaz Lancaster, and Dorothy Rudd Moore. Jay’s writing has appeared in Barrelhouse Mag, ROOM Magazine, Poetry Online, and was recognized in Meridian and the Mississippi Review‘s 2021 poetry prize competitions.
Makeda Easter is an award-winning arts writer and journalism instructor based in Los Angeles. She previously covered the intersection of art and identity at the Los Angeles Times. Makeda is currently building a journalism platform dedicated to artist activists working across the U.S. called the art rebellion.
Dalanie Harris is a Los Angeles-based double bassist, podcaster, and writer. Her current research interests include intersections of music, history, and culture in Black America. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, Harris is a fierce advocate for equity and cultural inclusivity in classical music spaces.