Teaching Artist Statement
Phaedre’s passion for creating collaborative learning environments where students gain a sense of belonging through the building of personal relationships and her strong belief in arts advocacy are rooted in her earliest musical experiences. Originally from Connecticut, she comes from an artistic, eclectic, and politically active family that encouraged her to speak her mind and pursue her creative interests at an early age. She began her musical training in the Wethersfield Public Schools and studied cello with Eric Dahlin at the Hartt School of Music where she also performed with the Connecticut Youth Symphony. The impact of participating in both school and community music organizations ultimately led Phaedre into music education where she now creates a similar artistic foundation for her students. It is her hope that the shared musical experiences she cultivates through her work with SSCYO result in students finding a deeper appreciation for the art form and its rich history, a profound outlet for self-expression, and an enhanced sensitivity through the collective artistic experience.
Phaedre Sassano has worked in the Hingham Public Schools since 2001 where she currently acts as Music Resource Teacher and Director of Secondary Orchestras. She directs the Seventh and Eighth Grade Orchestra and Junior Chamber Players at Hingham Middle School, and the Hingham High School String Orchestra, Symphony Orchestra, Sinfonia and Chamber Players, as well as the HMS and HHS pit orchestras for musical productions. Phaedre is an elementary strings instructor as well as coordinator of the Hingham After School Strings program. She has been a private cello instructor on the South Shore for over fifteen years. She is an active member of the Massachusetts Music Educators Association (MMEA), Southeastern District, and SEMSBA, and her leadership roles in these organizations have included acting as orchestra manager, senior concert chair, auditions committee member, adjudicator, and executive board member.
Phaedre graduated from Boston University cum laude where she majored in music education and studied with master cellist George Neikrug. She holds a master’s degree from New York University in Performing Arts Administration. In her time in New York City, Phaedre was Education Associate for the Manhattan New Music Project where she helped develop and implement school music programs in public and private schools in all five boroughs. She also worked with the World Music Institute where she assisted with the promotion of international performing arts events throughout the city. Through NYU, Phaedre traveled to The Netherlands and Germany where she studied arts administration in the European context. She has also spent time in Trinidad working with orchestral students in the National Sinfonia for the Orchestral Society of Trinidad and Tobago.