About Us

IMG_20130517_142346The Landolfi String Quartet and Ensemble has become a St. Louis institution with a history of stellar musical performances at a variety of area events. We have strong classical roots but the Quartet can also bring a rock ‘n roll attitude to any performance or refine today’s most popular music for a more elegant event.

Musicians with a flair for fun, Landolfi shares their music with all kinds of audiences, from royalty to inner city children. Their activities have included a multitude of major St. Louis events, like concerts during the St. Louis History Museum’s Vatican Exhibit and performing at the openings of MetroLink and America’s Center and for the World Series VIP reception.

Landolfi has experience playing weddings of all faiths and styles. Bridal couples can now relax, knowing that Landolfi will provide beautiful music at the appropriate times throughout the ceremony. In addition, couples often request we play for rehearsal dinners and receptions, adding that touch of elegance without being overpowering.

Landolfi’s music can spice up other events such as corporate functions, holiday parties, anniversary celebrations, and grand openings for new businesses. Whatever the occasion, Landolfi can provide the perfect musical ambience.

Music is an important dimension of any event. The Landolfi String Quartet and Ensemble has been and will be available to make any event, large or small, special and memorable. From Bach to Rock….

Our Members

Mary-215x300Mary Sweetin, Violin

Mary Sweetin is a classically trained violinist, with a Bachelors and Masters in Music from SIUE. Sweetin began teaching orchestra in the Hazelwood School District, where her orchestras received the highest ratings at the District and State levels. Sweetin’s instructional duties at SCC include directing the Symphonic Orchestra, giving violin lessons, and teaching Music Appreciation. Committed to the success of her students, Sweetin has implemented instructional enhancements such as Daily Warm-ups, String Teacher Mentoring, Solo Concerts, and and Instrumental Master Classes. Sweetin encourages students to be actively engaged in their own education, and makes herself available to assist them toward their goals. Mrs. Sweetin has been voted “Adjunct Faculty of the Year” in the Humanities Division, by St. Charles Community College. She is a member of Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197).

Carl Hoff, Landolfi QuartetCarl Hoff, Violin

Carl has extensive orchestral experience as well as an affinity for other musical styles including rock, country, bluegrass, and jazz. He has been recently appointed as concertmaster of the Town and Country Symphony Orchestra, after having served in that same role for the University City Symphony Orchestra from 1999-­2013, and has free-­lanced in the St. Louis area for over 20 years. Through the years, he has been in orchestras that have accompanied The Moody Blues, Barry Manilow, Smokey Robinson, Clay Aiken, and Dionne Warwick among others. His inspirations for the violin and its styles have come from Stephane Grappelli, Jean­-Luc Ponty, Mark O’Conner, and Charlie Daniels. Occasionally, he enjoys sitting in on informal jam sessions, and has been a part time member a local band, Pik’nLik’n, a group specializing in folk/bluegrass renderings of everything from classic rock to Johnny Cash. He is also an experienced string educator, having taught 27 years in the Rockwood School District Orchestra program. He is a member of Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197).

Quote: “I feel that the violin has one of the longest, most varied histories of most any other instrument. The wide range of its stylistic capabilities and vast palette of tone colors is truly inspiring, challenging, and amazing!”

Deberah-Haferkamp-165x300Deberah Haferkamp, Violist and Manager

Deberah Haferkamp is one of the founding members of Landolfi Quartet and continues to manage the ensemble and perform as violist/violinist. She holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from University of Evansville and a Masters in Music from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville. She wrote and directs the program “Developing the Active Listener” which the Landolfi Quartet performs for area children. Her numerous awards have included: The Kawanis Award for Leadership and Scholarship, the Merit Award from the St. Louis Suburban Music Educators for contributions to music education, the Owen Miller Award from the Musicians Association of St. Louis for contributions to the music profession and the Artist Teacher Award from the American String Teachers Association, Missouri Chapter.

She has been a professional musician since age 17, which has given her the opportunity to work with many great artists as varied as Pavarotti, Ray Charles, Smokey Robinson, Led Zeppelin, and Hip-Hop Artist Nightowl. She has performed under the baton of Aaron Copland for Lincoln Portrait and in the ballet orchestra for The Rite of Spring choreographed by Rudolf Nureyev. During her entire career her passion has been to ensure the survival and accessibility of great music of all genres for all ages with the goal of preserving the cultural treasure of live music for future generations.

She continues to be active in the St. Louis area music and music education community. She teaches at Lewis and Clark Community College in Godfrey, IL and St. Charles Community College in St. Charles, MO. She teaches string ensemble at Lutheran High School North, orchestra at the Collegiate School of Medicine and Bioscience, a magnet school in St. Louis and violin classes for Orchestrating Diversity at the Demetrious Johnson Charitable Foundation location. She is Principal 2nd Violin in St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestra and personnel manager and treasurer for Gateway Festival Orchestra. She is a member of Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197).

Gary-photo-Aug-2009-225x300Gary Lee, Cello

Gary Lee received his MM in Cello Performance from the St. Louis Conservatory of Music and his BM in Cello Performance (cum laude) from Illinois Wesleyan University. His teachers include Yuan Tung, Robert Luke, Gordon Robson, and Karl Lear. His education includes training in chamber music, orchestral repertoire, and early music ensemble. Other instruments played include bass viola da gamba and piano. He teaches cello through Community Music School of Webster University, Dayspring School of the Arts, and his private studio. He was recently awarded the Outstanding Studio Educator 2016 award from the American String Teachers Association, Missouri Chapter.

Active as a freelance musician in both Missouri and Illinois, he is principal cellist and librarian of the Alton Symphony Orchestra. He is a cellist for the Landolfi String Quartet, Richard Wappel Trio, and Gateway Festival Orchestra. He has played as extra cellist for Town & Country Symphony, Florissant Valley Symphony, Illinois Symphony Orchestra, Masterworks Chorale, and other area ensembles and support ensembles of touring performers, including Amy Grant and Bernadette Peters. He is a former principal cellist of Town & Country Symphony and former associate principal cellist of University City Symphony. He is a member of Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197), Suzuki Association of the Americas, and Viola da Gamba Society of America.

BrianProfilePicBrian Elder, Violin

Brian Elder has been performing and writing music professionally for over fifteen years. His diverse style of performance and songwriting has been called “folky, jazz-inflected funk” by the St. Louis Post Dispatch. Brian performs on vocals, violin, mandolin, and guitar. He also serves as the Principal Second Violinist of the University City Symphony Orchestra, Violinist with the Gateway Festival Orchestra and performs regularly with various ensembles in the St. Louis Metro area. Brian holds a Master of Music in Music Education degree from Boston University and is the current music director at the Fulton School at St. Albans.

Born and raised in Columbia, Missouri, Brian studied violin with Kathy Rollings and earned a music scholarship to the University of Missouri.  He continued his studies with violin professor John McLeod and graduated from Mizzou with degrees in Music and Political Science.  After moving to St. Louis, Brian spent five years with his band E. M. Grueve (Groove) releasing three records and traveling extensively throughout the Midwest. In 2006 Brian released his first solo album entitled “Preservation Hall” and debuted the project with a benefit concert for the St. Louis Arc and New Orleans Musician’s Relief Fund. He is a member of the Nashville Songwriter’s Association International and the American Federation of Musicians (Local 2-197).

Brian’s performances include a featured set at Variety’s Night of the Rising Stars and guest violin appearances with Barry Manilow, the Peter Mayer Group, and the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. His various ensembles have also opened for Pat Benatar, The Doobie Brothers, The Neville Brothers, Sister Hazel, Canned Heat, .38 Special, Little Feat, Leftover Salmon, and the Atomic Fireballs.

Patricia Ruiloba Gitto, Landolfi QuartetPatricia Ruiloba Gitto, Cello

Born in Panama City, Rep. of Panama, Patricia is an active cello player in multiple ensembles, and had been a member of the National Symphony Orchestra of Panama from 2000 to 2006. In Panama, she was a member of the Oxus String Quartet, Sforzato Quartet, Cronus Ensemble, Musik a String Studio ensemble, Orquesta Juvenil de Panama, founder and member of the Orquesta Juvenil Istmeña. With a Masters of Music in Cello Performance from Texas State University-San Marcos, she studied cello with Dr. Christopher Haritatos, since fall 2006. Also, she was principal cellist for three semesters of the Texas State Symphony Orchestra (2006-2007), under the baton of Howard Hudiburg, and later a member of the Texas State Chamber Orchestra that traveled to Italy on the “Cowboy Minimal Tour” (2009). In addition, she served as a private teacher of cello in San Antonio, TX, as well as an After School String programs instructor for two years (2009-2011). From Fall 2012, Patricia is a faculty teacher at the Community Music School of Webster University, and a String Instructor for the After School String program at Webster Groves School District in St. Louis, MO. Currently, she continues pursuing further study in the Suzuki Method for cello instruction. Patricia holds a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from the University of Panama with honors (2004). She is an active member of the Suzuki Association of Americas, and the Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197).

Joe and violinJoseph Kaminsky, Violin

Joseph Kaminsky studied with John Kendall, Roland and Almita Vamos. He is a former member of the Illinois Symphony, the Kammerguild Chamber Orchestra; former concertmaster of the St. Louis Civic Orchestra (Kirkwood Symphony), and former adjunct violin instructor at Maryville University; UMSL, and Webster University. He performs regularly with Bach Society Orchestra and occasionally with St. Louis Symphony musicians. He also is a much sought after violin teacher and his students have been selected as concertmasters of the St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra three times, won the SLSYO Concerto Competition twice; been selected concertmaster of the Missouri All-State High School Orchestra once and assistant concertmaster twice; and have won in the Belleville Philharmonic “Stars of Tomorrow” Competition 14 times in the last 15 years. He is a member of Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197).

Angelina McLaughlin-Heil, Landolfi QuartetAngelina McLaughlin-Heil, Cello

After earning a bachelor’s degree in music education from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, Ms. McLaughlin-Heil instructed public school orchestra programs as well as private cello studio in Waukegan, Illinois. Other orchestra teaching positions followed at the Ferguson-Florissant school district in Missouri and Edwardsville High School.

While at SIU she received the Honors Quartet Scholarship, Johnetta Haley Scholarship, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian Award. During her tenure at Edwardsville High School, she received an “Extra Effort” award from the district for her role in their production of Karl Orff’s Carmina Burana. Angelina served as a full scholarship graduate assistant while completing her masters in orchestral conducting from Illinois State University. She frequently directed the Illinois State Symphony Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra, and String Project’s “Sinfonia”.

Ms. McLaughlin-Heil has appeared with her orchestras at the American String Teachers Association’s National Orchestra Competition and has adjudicated solo and ensemble festival and large group contests for the Illinois High School Association and St. Louis School Music Educators Association.

She currently performs on cello with the Belleville Philharmonic and the St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestras while running a private lesson studio in Highland, Illinois.

Headshot 10 copyTwinda Murry, Violin

Twinda Murry, a native St. Louisan, began playing violin at the age of eight.   She completed a bachelor of music in performance and education at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville and has done graduate work at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville and at the University of Missouri St. Louis.  Her teachers included Deberah Haferkamp, R. Kent Perry, and John Kendall.

Murry has performed as a solo, chamber, and orchestral musician in the St. Louis area for more than 20 years. Some of the organizations performed with include: 1999 Papal Visit Orchestra, St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestra, Bach Society Orchestra, Masterworks Chorale Orchestra, Missouri Ballet Orchestra, St. Louis Luciano Pavarotti Orchestra, Moody Blues Festival Orchestra, and University City Symphony Orchestra. Current performance activities include local area wedding and event quartets, the Gateway Festival Orchestra, as well as performances by the Murry String Ensemble. She is a member of Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197).

Amy PenningtonAmy Pennington, Violin and Viola

Amy Pennington (viola and violin) holds music degrees from Calvin College (B.A. in Music) and the University of Missouri-Kansas City’s Conservatory of Music (M.M. in Viola Performance) as well as a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She is currently a full-time academic librarian at St. Louis University but also actively freelances on violin and viola in the St. Louis area. She has played with a variety of orchestras and chamber ensembles including the Battle Creek Symphony Orchestra, St. Joseph Symphony, St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestra, Maryville Symphony, Saint Louis University String Orchestra, and Gateway Festival Orchestra. She taught private violin and viola lessons for several years while in the Grand Rapids, MI and Kansas City, MO areas. Amy is a member of the Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197).

Vincent-200x300Vincent Piazza, Violin

A native of Alton, IL, his summer highlights have included the National Repertory Orchestra and studying string quartets in Iceland. In May 2007, he toured China as a member of the Sinfonia da Camera, and in 2006, he toured Chicago with the University of Illinois Symphony Orchestra as well as placing second in the Paul Rolland Violin Competition. He earned his M.M. from Boston University in 2009, and B.M. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where he was also a student of Italian, receiving a Minor and studying abroad in Catania, Sicily. Vincent’s teachers have included Boston’s Bayla Keyes, Pacifica Quartet member Sibbi Bernhardsson, Almita Vamos, and Peter Schaffer. Vincent is concertmaster of Alton Symphony Orchestra and freelances in the St. Louis area while also holding a full-time position at McKendree University. He is a member of the Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197).

Philip Photo 2013Philip Tinge, Violin & Viola

Philip Tinge is the lead instructor for the Phil’zHarmoniks Suzuki Group and also teaches an Education Through Music program for Sister Thea Bowman Catholic School in East St. Louis. He is a violin and viola instructor for Southwestern Illinois College. He has played with the St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra and has since performed throughout the area professionally for many orchestras and churches. Philip has been concertmaster with the Belleville Philharmonic Orchestra since 1994. He has played in Gateway Festival Orchestra and has been part of ensembles supporting many touring performers, including Amy Grant.

He holds degrees in music performance through SIUE. During his college years, Philip was blessed to study with three fabulous instructors: Dr. Perry, Mr. Schieber, and Mr.Kendall. Besides masters degrees in performance on both violin and viola, he has a specialization in Suzuki pedagogy with John Kendall, one of the two original instructors to bring the Suzuki method into the United States. He is a member of Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197).

Sharing music is like being part of a big happy family. The opportunity to assist in making a special event its very best is always a thrill and just one more way music brings the world closer together. Looking forward to adding that special touch to your special day!

img_3112Tom Winter, Violin

Tom Winter plays violin with orchestras, quartets, and churches in the St. Louis area and is an active member of the Musicians’ Association of St. Louis (AFM Local 2-197).

Tom began studying violin at the age of six, receiving professional instruction from  Joseph Kaminsky for two years. He was also a member of Kaminsky’s studio, The Kirkwood Academy of Music, where he performed in public venues such as Walt Disney World and Busch Stadium.  In high school, Tom earned the principal second violin chair for his Missouri All-State Orchestra audition in 2008.

Tom graduated from Lindenwood University with a Bachelor of Arts in Music, Summa Cum Laude.  As concertmaster, he served the Lindenwood University Symphonic Orchestra for his entire college career.  Branching out beyond classical training, Tom gained improv experience playing with the Lindenwood Jazz Combo, and also played electric violin for Lindenwood University football concerts as part of the marching band program his last semester.

Tom is currently active in several local ensembles.  He plays violin in the St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestra  and plays principal second violinist for the Maryville Symphony. Tom has also performed for the St. Louis Civic Orchestra, Gateway Festival Orchestra, and Alton Symphony Orchestra.

Another aspect of Tom’s music education includes composition and arranging.  Tom is fluent with music notation software and has composed several original jazz compositions.  He also immensely enjoys writing quartet arrangements of popular tunes on-demand.