illumine Alumni

Brennan Martinez

Brennan Martinez is a mezzo-soprano from Austin, TX. She’s been described as “a mezzo-soprano to be watched,” (Opera Lively) and sings with “power, authority, and a most intriguing color to her wide-ranging voice,” (Classical Voice of North Carolina).

Performance highlights include: Anna Kennedy in Maria Stuarda (Piedmont Opera), the title role in The Tragedy of Carmen (Hawaii Performing Arts Festival), Annio in La clemenza di Tito, Eduige in Rodelinda, Charlotte in Werther (A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute), Consuelo in West Side Story (The Glimmerglass Festival), the title role in Carmen (Bay View Music Festival), Ruth in Dark Sisters, Second Lady in The Magic Flute, Olga Olsen in Street Scene, (Oklahoma City University), and the Baker’s Wife in Into the Woods (Hawaii Performing Arts Festival). 

In November 2016, she was a member of the closing night ensemble of Kristin Chenoweth: My Love Letter to Broadway at the Lunt-Fontaine Theatre in New York City. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Wanda L. Bass School of Music at Oklahoma City University and a Master of Music degree from the A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.

Maria Tangarova

After graduating from the youth choir program, Maria Tangarova attended McCombs School of Business at UT Austin and studied Finance. During her time at UT, Maria combined her degree with her passion for music and founded her first company, UTalent Records, by the time she was 19. Maria also represented the Recording Academy as GRAMMY U Rep and Intern for two consecutive years, attending the GRAMMY Awards twice by the time she was 22. Tangarova graduated in May 2020 as one of the Top 8 students of her class at UT Austin and is now working as a Financial Analyst for Capitol Music Group in sunny Hollywood, California. Maria’s goal is to revolutionize the music industry one song at a time, and she carries her love for music wherever she goes just as Ms. Nina Revering taught her.

Sesha McMinn

Since graduating from the youth choir program, I spent the last four years studying at Stanford University. I graduated with a B.S. in Human Biology and a minor in both Education and Comparative Literature. I am now pursuing my M.A. degree in Education and hope to teach high school biology shortly after. Over the last few years, I’ve spent much of my time playing on Stanford’s Women’s Ultimate Frisbee team and rock climbing! I’m so grateful for the enormous impact Nina and youth choir program had in shaping me into who I am now.

Liv Martens

After 6 years with the youth choir, Liv went on to sing in the concert choir at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute while completing her degree in IT, Web Science, and Human-Computer Interaction. She is now a web developer living in Brooklyn New York, where she now participated in New York Theater Ballet and volunteers with Opportunity Music Project and NYC Together.

Isabella Grossling

I graduated from the youth choir in 2016, I then attended Berklee College of Music, I was a vocal principle and studied Music Business, along with minoring in Recording and Production. I graduated a year early due to testing out of into level courses (thanks Ms.Revering for all those theory worksheets). Berklee was an amazing experience, I focused more on jazz and contemporary music during my 3 years.

I had two amazing internships, one working for a recording studio in Texas called Orb Recording Studios. The other being the Boston Symphony Orchestra. I was able to closely work with the orchestra members and the guest artists a few of which include Leslie Odom Jr, Arlo Guthrie, Queen Latifah and more.

I graduated in 2019 with honors, I am now living in Los Angeles! For the past 6 months I have been working along side the amazing Rufus Wainwright.

I hope to come back to Austin soon and see a concert! The Youth Choir was the biggest reason I became a musician & I will forever look back on it fondly.