About Us - New Triad for Collaborative Arts

New Triad Pillars

Founded by Dr. Arlene Shrut in 2003, New Triad is a 501(c)(3) premiere educational and arts services organization that offers unique programs combining the disciplines of drama, movement, musical interpretation, and the art of speaking. These professional, inter-disciplinary presentation skills have the power to create classical music performances that are more engaging and accessible to audiences. New Triad is the only organization of its kind that goes beyond musical instruction to train artists in how to personally communicate and visually engage with their audiences, reinvigorating performing arts as a whole.

The name "New Triad" refers to the three pillars upon which performance is built: art, artists, and audience. The presence of each segment makes the foundation whole and provides the essence from which it draws its strength. New Triad focuses on performing artists so that they can bring meaning and context to all people. This helps audiences understand their inner selves, their relationships with one another and the world around them, connecting them to their shared humanity.


New Triad's interdisciplinary faculty is carefully selected so that all members reflect New Triad's educational approach: combining technical, expressive and philosophical excellence in providing young artists with the essential presentation skills to perform effectively both aurally and visually. Through this aligned approach, New Triad faculty goes beyond the training offered at most music schools and festivals to empower performers to move and engage contemporary audiences. The interview process for carefully screening faculty members is based on Dr. Shrut's past collaborative teaching experiences with the best teaching artists in the nation. Additionally, professional references from esteemed leaders in the national and international field of classical music are reviewed. All appointments are reviewed and approved by the Program Committee.

Dr. Arlene Shrut

Dr. Arlene Shrut is the Founder and Artistic Director of New Triad for Collaborative Arts. A faculty member of The Juilliard School and Manhattan School of Music, Arlene was honored as inaugural "Coach of the Year" in 2003 by Classical Singer Magazine. She coached for 14 summers at the Aspen Opera Theater Center, offering classes in Mozart and German operas. Recent festivals include Atlantic Music Festival, Vancouver International Song Institute, Operafest on Martha's Vineyard and Songfest in Malibu. She serves as official pianist for international opera competitions and galas sponsored by The Loren Zachary Society, National Wagner Association, The Gerda Lissner, Licia Albanese Puccini, Giulio Gari, Fritz and Lavinia Jensen, and Marcello Giordani Foundations.

Ken Benson

Ken Benson has served as one of the leading Vocal Managers in the classical music field, including 25 years as Vice-President with Columbia Artists, Inc. He is well known and respected for his broad knowledge of repertoire and career direction. He was recently named Quiz-Master for the MET's Broadcast Intermission Feature. Ken has presented master classes, seminars and consultations at The Juilliard School, Yale University, UCLA, Mannes College, DePaul University, Manhattan School of Music, and Roosevelt University. He is a frequent judge in major vocal competitions, and lectures and writes for such publications including Opera News and Classical Singer. In December 2011 he interviewed tenor Jonas Kaufmann for The Wagner Society of New York.

Alyssa Dodson

Ms. Alyssa Dodson has performed with many distinguished dance companies that include The Martha Graham Company, Pilobolus, The Pascal Rioult Dance Theatre and The Metropolitan Opera Ballet. She has been on the faculty of Tanglewood, the Metropolitan Opera's Lindemann Young Artists Program, NYU, Cap 21, Interlochen, and has participated in numerous master classes worldwide.

Steven Gross

Steven Gross has worked as a conductor and pianist on several long-running Broadway and off-Broadway shows. He also regularly conducts opera and symphonic performances both nationally and internationally. Steven formerly held the post of General Music Director at Theater des Westens in Berlin. He earned a DMA in conducting from Yale University.

Adam Marks

Praised as an"excellent pianist" with "titanic force" (New York Times), Adam Marks has appeared with the Manchester Symphony Orchestra, the National Repertory Orchestra, and at notable venues including Salle Cortot, Carnegie Hall, Miller Theatre, and Ravinia. He was a laureate of the 2008 Orleans Competition, and served as Pianist and Director of Artistic Programming for Chicago's innovative Fifth House Ensemble. Also in demand as an instructor, Adam has held faculty positions at the fresh inc festival and New Music on the Point, and has given guest lectures and masterclasses at Yale, Juilliard, Manhattan School of Music, Mannes, The Colburn School, and other prestigious institutions. Adam plays Yamaha pianos and Schoenhut toy pianos.

Jennifer Beattie

Hailed by Opera News for her "exuberant voice and personality," mezzo-soprano Jennifer Beattie is a versatile performer in styles ranging from opera to chamber music to cabaret. Ms. Beattie has been a soloist on the concert and opera stages with The National Opera Orchestra at the Kennedy Center, The Opera Company of Philadelphia, The Philadelphia Orchestra, and The National Chorale in Carnegie Hall. Her recital history includes venues such as The Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts, The National Arts Club, Juilliard, Yale, The Texas Music Festival, and the Mozarteum in Salzburg. Her collaborative history includes work with the JACK Quartet, Fifth House Ensemble, and she has premiered works by Tom Cipullo, Kathryn Alexander, Tom Whitman and Laura Schwendinger. Ms. Beattie lives in Philadelphia, and received a Master of Music in Vocal Performance from the Manhattan School of Music.

Nicholas Muni

Nicholas Muni has directed over two hundred productions in Europe, Australia and North America with companies such as San Francisco Opera, New York City Opera, Canadian Opera Company (Toronto), Houston Grand Opera, Seattle Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Glimmerglass Opera and Opera Theater of St. Louis. Recent productions include U.S. Stage premiere of El Amor Brujo/La Vida Breve at Manhattan School of Music in 2011. In addition, he directed L'elisir d'amore at AVA and La Finta Giardiniera at San Francisco Opera Merola program. He has also served as Artistic Director for the Tulsa Opera and Cincinnati Opera as well as Distinguished Artist in Residence and Professor of Opera at CCM. Upcoming projects include directing "Cosi fan Tutte" and teaching acting at AVA, as well as at Bard College.

Stephanie Sundine

Stephanie Sundine's career as a soprano took her to many of the world's leading opera houses in major roles with some of opera's most prominent directors and conductors. Since retiring from singing, she has mounted productions at Atlanta Opera, Fort Worth Opera, Indiana University Opera Theater, Madison Opera, Opera Boston, Opera Carolina, Sarasota Opera, Toledo Opera and Utah Opera. A guest stage director and acting teacher at Boston University, she has given master classes at Catholic University, Southern Methodist University, The Puccini Foundation and University of Delaware. She is a partner in the supertitles company, Words for Music.