Chamber Strings

CSA invites students who play string instruments to audition for this outstanding ensemble.

Chamber Strings is open to violin, viola, cello, and contrabass students with at least 2 years of experience (must be able to read music). Under the direction of Wendy Dane with assistance by Cory Winters and Caroline Gonzales, Chamber Strings prepares and presents concerts of music from classic masterworks by Bach, Mozart, Grieg, Rachmaninoff, and Satie, to Broadway and pop.

Auditions will be held September 13th and 14th from 6 pm to 8 pm

Wendy Dane

Director of Strings (Suzuki, Fiddle)

Wendy Dane began performing violin & guitar at the early age of 12 in a variety band with her two brothers.  Graduating from the University of Wisconsin with a Bachelor of Music, she continued her education obtaining Kindergarten through Grade 12 Instrumental Music Certification.  Wendy has completed Suzuki Association of the Americas registered teacher training for Violin Books 1-8.  She has been referred to as a ‘Master Teacher’ by one of the East Coast’s leading advocates for childhood education.  Wendy has initiated string programs in public and private schools, has taught students from preschool through college levels, and is in high demand as a guest clinician at various string workshops.


As a freelance musician, Wendy performs numerous musical styles including classical, jazz, bluegrass and Celtic.  Ms. Dane won her division of the Minnesota State Old Time Fiddle Contest in 2000 and 2007.  She maintains an active playing schedule.


Moving from Wisconsin, Wendy and her husband Peter are excited to be living and working in Arkansas along with their three big dogs: D’Artagnon, Brownie-Red and Jeep-Wrangler.

Caroline Gonzales

Cello & Bass Instructor

Caroline is currently the orchestra director at Darby Junior High School and an assistant director at Northside High School. She also plays cello in the Fort Smith Symphony.

She grew up in Stillwater, Oklahoma, and graduated Summa Cum Laude from Oklahoma City University with a degree in Instrumental Music Education.

When she is not teaching or playing cello, you can find Caroline in a bookstore or coffee shop, or at home with her husband Ryan, her puppy Pippin, and her cat Merry.


Cory Winters

Violin, Viola, & Fiddle Instructor

Cory Winters began his musical studies as a violin student with the public school orchestra program in his hometown of Fort Smith, Arkansas. He went on to attend the University of Central Arkansas, where he studied violin, viola, and composition. His composition teacher at UCA was Dr. Paul Dickinson.

After graduating with a Bachelor of Music in 2010, Mr. Winters continued his education at Belmont University. He studied composition with Dr. William Pursell and Dr. Mark Volker, earning an Master of Music in 2012. Cory’s musical influences include Irish and American folk music, shape-note singing, blues, country, and a variety of art music.

He currently resides in Van Buren, Arkansas, and teaches violin, viola, and composition lessons at the Community School of the Arts Fort Smith. In addition to his musical interests, Mr. Winters is an avid reader and enjoys studying history, musicology, and astronomy.