Teaching Artists

Genevieve Roby is a vocalist and documentary songwriter. From 2016 to 2018, she was a member of a band that covered songs to perform to the local community. In 2018 she and her bandmates, the group now titled RSB, produced a mini-album of original music called EPic. She attends Bennington College, where she studies the performing arts and creative writing. Genevieve is interested in the ways that music can be used as an inherent means of human connection and understanding. Her email address is groby@docsong.org

Joaquin Contreras is a multi-instrumentalist and documentary songwriter. He focuses on writing documentary songs with families and communities in order to help them preserve their histories and cultures. He attends Bennington College, where he studies composition, theory, and musical performance. He also works with a student-led organization called Ganas, which provides support to Latinx migrant workers in southern Vermont. His email address is jcontreras@docsong.org

Hazel Delehey is a documentary songwriter and studio vocalist. She pioneered the first documentary song for a documentary film for the High Mountain Institute in Colorado. She is also the first to offer her voice to represent women in the #Me Too Songs project. Additionally, Hazel is interested in writing songs with people who look to nature to guide them through struggle. Her email address is hdelehey@docsong.org

Nora Willauer is an award-winning studio and concert cellist and documentary songwriter. With Alex Wilder and Will Foote, she pioneered documentary songwriting sessions in Spain. She is an alumna of University of Oregon and Bay Chamber Concerts and Music School. Her thesis on cello arranging for documentary songwriting has earned a place in the University of Oregon’s permanent collection. She currently studies at the Cleveland Institute of Music and leads the #MeToo Songs project. Her email address is nwillauer@docsong.org

Melodi Var Öngel s the recipient of the Davis for Peace Project grant, which funds her documentary songwriting project on Cyprus. She lives in Adana, Turkey, and travels to work with people who live in conflict zones and who have limited interaction. She holds a B.A. from Bennington College and is a graduate student at the London School of Economics. She would like to write songs with people who live in conflict zones. Her goal is to use music as a way to increase communication and to construct alternative futures. Her email address is mvarongel@docsong.org

Chloë Isis is a songwriter and vocalist. In 2018, she composed and recorded with the Bay Chamber-Carnegie Hall Lullaby Project. Chloë conducted the first-ever live documentary songwriting session on radio. She is earning her undergraduate degree at Warren-Wilson College. Chloe is interested in writing documentary songs with people who are deaf, children, and people who are processing grief. Her email address is cisis@docsong.org

Caroline Rex-Waller pioneered the first-ever documentary songwriting workshop in a high school. Under her leadership, 37 students generated 37 lyrical and melodic sketches in 4 days. She directs the curriculum design project for Documentary Songwriters and teaches at Open School East in Portland, Oregon. She graduated from Smith College and is currently enrolled in a long-distance Master’s program at Middlebury. Her email address iscrexwaller@docsong.org

Zach Arfa is a documentary songwriter and dancer. Through his work at Hilltown Youth Performing Arts Programs, he has pioneered documentary songwriting in summer musicals and in camps addressing addiction and mental or health challenges. He attends Oberlin College where he is majoring in psychology and dance. Zach believes that it may be healing for individuals to be listened to openly, without judgment, as in documentary songwriting. He is interested in exploring the connection of that relationship and a therapeutic one. His email address is zarfa@docsong.org

Ken Goldman started formal percussion studies in Iowa City. After focusing on classical music at Northwestern University’s School of Music, he turned to drum set and studied with Hamid Drake (Don Cherry) and Mark Walker (Oregon). He recorded with several bands while living in Oakland and toured with new grass band Sugar Beat. Performance highlights include the Telluride Bluegrass Festival with Tony Furtado and Matt Flinner, CBGB with Peter Stuart and playing the annual Replacements Tribute at First Avenue. Currently, he drums in jazz trio Katz and Dogs, soul/jive band Dizzy Hat, power pop band Good Mitten and various recording endeavors in the back room of his house. His email address is kgoldman@docsong.org

Malcolm Brooks, PhD, is a composer and documentary songwriter. His work is heard on PBS, NOVA and the History Channel. He has written music for films that have won honors, including two Emmy nominations and a Peabody award. He serves on the faculty at Bay Chamber Concerts and Music School and holds degrees from Columbia, Berkeley, and Prescott. Malcolm is interested in writing documentary songs with people who have lost loved ones, people in recovery from addiction, and students of all ages. His email address is mbrooks@docsong.org

Alex Wilder is a producer and songwriter. He has arranged and produced recordings for Mostly Brothers, the Push Farther Project, Chloë Isis, and Hazel Delehey. He has led sessions in documentary songwriting, both in English and Spanish, in the U.S., Cuba, and Spain. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Oberlin College. Alex is interested in writing documentary songs with populations affected by violence and harassment. He’d like to help people express their difficulties and share their coping mechanisms with those in similar situations. You can read more about Alex at alexwilder.com. His email address is awilder@docsong.org

Will Foote is a vocalist and songwriter. He organized the first ever concert of documentary songs at a university folk festival. In the role of a participant, he has composed melodic themes live on radio. He has traveled to remote regions in upstate New York to document in music the emotions and experiences of contemporary farmers. He is a graduate of Brewster Academy and of St. Lawrence University. Will wants to write documentary songs with people who have learning differences, as well as people who feel alienated in their communities. His email address is wfoote@docsong.org

Tori Arau heads up the podcast project for Documentary Songwriters. Tori attends Gordon College in Massachusetts and has conducted research in the analytical chemistry of perovskite nanoparticles at the University of Alabama. She is the recipient of a 2018 research position in analytical chemistry at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Tori is interested in writing documentary songs with women who have struggled with chronic health disorders. Her email address is tarau@docsong.org

Mimi Bornstein is a documentary songwriter, singer, pianist, and choral director. She serves as Director of Music Ministries at Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, Virginia. She is the founder of the 100+ singer Midcoast Community Chorus, which raises money through yearly concerts and then donates the proceeds to causes in Maine. This year, Mimi has partnered with Charles Brown to form the Voices United Community Chorus, a multi-racial interfaith chorus in Arlington. Her email address is mbornstein@docsong.org

Chris Finn is a documentary songwriter and guitarist who has sung and played in churches since childhood, spending 13 years leading a Los Angeles based contemporary music church band. Chris currently plays guitar in an 18-piece jazz orchestra and assorted combos as well as serving as a supporting church musician in Maine. His email address is cfinn@docsong.org

Jonny Westhorp is a guitarist and documentary songwriter from Manchester, England, living and working in Belgium. He holds popular and jazz music degrees from the University of Salford, UK, and the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp, Belgium. He is currently studying for his masters in Jazz guitar. Having trained in community music with Musicians Without Borders, Jonny is interested in using music as a way of uniting and integrating marginalised members of society into the community. His email address is jwesthorp@docsong.org

Sophie Davis received degrees in violin performance and environmental studies from Oberlin College and Conservatory, and has since divided her time between musical performance and pedagogy. In 2017, Sophie was awarded a Fulbright U.S. Student Research Grant to spend nine months in the South Pacific island nation of Samoa where she explored the ways in which the arts can raise awareness of climate change. Sophie currently teaches strings at two music schools in Maine and is a member of the Halcyon String Quartet – an ensemble dedicated to using music and the arts to cultivate environmental stewardship.

Board of Directors

Anastasia Fisher serves on the Board of Directors and as Secretary for Documentary Songwriters. She is the founder and Chief Experience Officer of Total Experience Solutions. Anastasia pioneered and designed the first-ever website for a major U.S. bank. She is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Bowdoin College, with a major in History.