Thomas Madeja is an experienced director, performer, producer, composer, and teaching artist. After earning a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Illinois and a Master of Music degree from Baylor University, he began his career in Philadelphia where he was soon in high demand both as a trumpet player and teaching artist.
In the fall of 2010, Tom relocated to Chicago, where he joined the faculty of the People’s Music School. He recently held the position of Nucleo Director for the YOURS Project Logan Square, another community youth orchestra program designed to affect positive social change.
In the spring of 2013, Tom founded the Chicago Metamorphosis Orchestra Project to address the growing need of social art and music programs in Chicago’s urban communities. ChiMOP provides several social and educational initiatives in the form of multifaceted community youth orchestra projects throughout the city. These projects are unique to the communities served and employ the exceptionally talented professional teaching artists living in these communities as our faculty and staff.
In addition to his work with ChiMOP, Tom is also the Executive Director of TJMadeja Music, LLC and the Artistic Director, trumpeter, and composer in residence of Nu Directions Chamber Brass. He continues to teach his private trumpet studio, tour with Nu Directions Chamber Brass, and perform regularly with his trio as well as other local jazz groups, chamber ensembles, and symphony orchestras.
Sylvia Carlson received a Bachelor of Music Degree from Northwestern University in trumpet performance where she studied with Vincent Cichowicz and Charles Geyer and a Master of Music Degree from the University of Arizona. She has performed with the Tulsa Philharmonic, the Southbend Symphony, the Elgin Philharmonic, and the Tucson Symphony Orchestra and is currently a member of the Northshore Concert Band. Recently Ms. Carlson has turned her focus towards music education, teaching trumpet and directing bands and orchestras in Chicago. She was a founding member of the People’s Music School’s YOURS Project at Hibbard Elementary School as well as founding director of the YOURS Project in Logan Square and most recently was director of the YOURS Project at Hibbard Elementary School in Albany Park. She now continues the work of music for social change as Administrative Director of the Chicago Metamorphosis Orchestra Project. Ms. Carlson got her start in music with group piano lessons in a Tulsa Public Elementary School. She went on to participate in concert band, jazz band, orchestra, and music theory and history classes, all in Tulsa Public Schools. She believes strongly that students in public schools today should have the same level of access to music education that people of her generation did.