Beginning Cello * Nipher Middle School * Kirkwood High School
At age 11, Ms. Fariga E. Drayton began cello studies with Kirkwood Orchestra Director Patrick Jackson. After graduating from Kirkwood High School in 1995, she went on to pursue her Bachelor’s Degree in Cello Performance from the University of Kentucky. She later completed her Music Education Certification from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.
Ms. Drayton’s teaching experience began in 2004 in the Alton School District (Illinois), where her ensembles received First Superior Ratings at both Large Ensemble Contest and Solo/Small Ensemble Festivals for seven consecutive years. During her tenure, Ms. Drayton formed the Schumann Chamber Orchestra; a 20-piece honors ensemble. This ensemble annually competed and won the Six Flags Music in the Parks Festival Orchestral Division and was also featured at an Alternative Music Concert during the Illinois Music Educators Association Conference (IMEA) and Clinic in 2011. In addition to her chamber orchestra, Ms. Drayton has also directed the Alton Jr. Youth Symphony (4th-8th grades), the St. Louis All Suburban 7th/8th Grade Honors Orchestra and coached many cello sectionals across the area.
Ms. Drayton’s has over 25 years of performance experience in St. Louis, MO and its surrounding areas. She has performed with the Transiberian Orchestra (St. Louis Strings), the New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players Mid-West Tour, and the Southern Illinois Music Festival in Carbondale, IL featuring all of the Brandenburg Concertos. A substitute cellist with the MUNY Orchestra for 2012-2015, Ms. Drayton is currently principal cellist of the Gateway Festival Orchestra and a member of the Laclede String Quartet and the Metropolitan Orchestra of St. Louis. Ms. Drayton has also been a featured soloist with Belleville Philharmonic, University City Symphony and the Gateway Festival Orchestra.
This is Ms. Drayton’s seventh year in the Kirkwood School District teaching Beginning Strings (cello) and the director for the Nipher Middle School and Kirkwood High School Symphonic Orchestra.
Her Nipher Middle School Orchestra was selected out of 31 orchestras to perform at the 2014 Missouri Music Educator's Association in January 2014. In March, they applied and were selected out of over 160 orchestral applicants to perform at the prestigious and historic Midwest Clinic International Band and Orchestra Conference in December 2014. They were one of three middle school orchestras and one of of thirteen orchestras selected worldwide. Nipher is the first ensemble in the Kirkwood School District to ever participate at this prestigious event. In March 2016, the orchestra was invited to perform at the Nation Youth Orchestra (Director's Choice) at Carnegie Hall in New York. Nipher Orchestra was the youngest group and the only string orchestra group to perform in at 30 minute concert. The orchestra received many complements as well as 3 standing ovations.
Beginning Violin * North Middle School Orchestra * KHS Concert Orchestra
A native of Kirkwood, Ms. Sarah Klevorn began piano lessons at age seven and violin lessons at age ten. She graduated from Kirkwood High School in 2009 after 8 years of instruction in the Kirkwood School District string program under Mr. Patrick Jackson, Ms. Kelly Judge, and Mr. Joe Kaminsky. Ms. Klevorn went on to earn a Bachelor's degree in Music Education and the Certificate in Violin Performance from Florida State University (FSU) as well as a Master's degree in Music Education from the prestigious Eastman School of Music. Influential teachers have included Corinne Stillwell (FSU), Juliana Athayde (Rochester Philharmonic), John McGrosso (Arianna String Quartet) and Dr. Kent Perry (St. Louis Philharmonic).
Ms. Klevorn comes to KSD from Orlando, FL, where she was the Associate Orchestra Director at Winter Park High School for two years. Her position included instruction of almost 200 students in five orchestra classes ranging from chamber music to large orchestra with full wind section. During her time at Winter Park, the program was selected as the Orlando Philharmonic's "Orchestra of Distinction" (the highest possible honor for school music programs in Orlando). Students earned Superior ratings at local and state level Music Performance Assessments and won seats in every local and state level honor orchestra. During her last year, students from Winter Park High School comprised 30% of All-County orchestra and 40% of Orlando students who successfully auditioned into Florida All-State orchestras. Ms. Klevorn also served as the Tri-M National Music Honors Society club sponsor, the conductor for the fall musical, and was selected as the winner of the 2016 Winter Park WildCat Spirit Award.
Ms. Klevorn was also active in the professional string teaching community in Florida. She has served as an adjudicator for All-State auditions, All-County auditions, and as a clinician and pre-Music Performance Assessment judge for numerous high school and middle school orchestras in both Orange and Volusia counties.
During her graduate studies, Ms. Klevorn taught at the RocMusic Collaborative, a partnership between the Hochstein School of Music and Dance, Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, Eastman Community Music School, and the Rochester City School District. Inspired by the El-Sistema movement, RocMusic provides free, after-school music instruction within economically disadvantaged communities. Ms. Klevorn has additionally been a guest conductor at the Hochstein School, sectional coach with Tallahassee Youth Orchestras, and lead music lessons in elementary school and special needs classrooms.
Ms. Klevorn has played with numerous ensembles, including the Tallahassee Symphony, Cordancia Chamber Orchestra, and the FSU Symphony and Opera Orchestras. She has served as Principal of the FSU Philharmonia. Passionate about chamber music, she completed six semesters of intensive chamber studies at FSU and attended the Britt String Quartet Academy in Medford, Oregon. Chamber performance highlights include Governor Rick Scott's Inaugural Ball, original soundtrack recordings for the FSU Film School, and multiple appearances at the FSU President's Box.