Our Western Branch Orchestra Directors
L-R: Sandra Crocker, Martin Glasco, Alice Glasco, Monica Smith, Leah Katz Rosenberg
Director, Western Branch High School Orchestras
Chair, WBHS Fine Arts Department
Mr. Martin D. Glasco, a native Virginian, is the Director of Orchestras and Chairperson of the Fine Arts Department at Western Branch High School in Chesapeake, VA. His program at Western Branch HS includes six orchestral ensembles with over 230 students. While at Western Branch High School, his orchestras have performed in Orlando, Atlanta, Myrtle Beach, Annapolis, Philadelphia, New York City, Washington DC, and Chicago. They have performed at the Kennedy Center and have performed twice at Carnegie Hall. His orchestras have also made two appearances at the Virginia Music Educators State Music Conference.
He is the former Chairperson for the String Orchestra Department of Chesapeake Public Schools and the co-author of the String Orchestra Curriculum for Chesapeake Public Schools. He is a graduate of East Carolina University and the former District IV Representative for the Virginia Band and Orchestra Directors Association, the former President of the Virginia Unit of the American String Teachers Association, as well as the 2002 WBHS Teacher of the Year and the 2008 Southeastern Wal-Mart Teacher of the Year. He has been listed numerous times in “Who’s Who in America’s Teachers” and has been recognized three times as an Outstanding Educator by the Virginia Governor’s Summer School for Arts and Sciences. He is the 2014 Virginia Unit of the American String Teachers Association’s “Orchestra Director of the Year.” Mr. Glasco has conducted/adjudicated all across Virginia and the East Coast and also maintains a studio of private violin/viola students.
He currently resides in the Western Branch section of Chesapeake with his wife Alice and their three children, Morgan, Meredith, and Carter.
Director, Western Branch Middle School Orchestra
Alice Renninger Glasco comes from a long line of teachers. Alice is originally from the Johnson City area of New York State, but her family moved to Virginia in 1972. She began her formal music training on the organ in Manassas, Virginia at the age of eight, and she selected the cello as her instrument for the Prince William County School’s fifth-grade music program. She graduated with honors from Stonewall Jackson High School and graduated Magna Cum Laude from James Madison University with a degree in Instrumental Music Education, K-12.
Alice enjoyed her student teaching experience in the Charlottesville Public Schools and spent the summer as a camp counselor at the Interlochen National Arts Camp in Michigan. Alice’s teaching career began in the Chesapeake Public Schools in 1988. After teaching in every borough in the city, she finally became the full-time Orchestra director at Western Branch Junior High/Middle School in 1991. Within a year, James Madison University called Alice to serve on the School of Music Advisory Board, conduct orchestras at the Spring String Thing Music Camp, and provide in-services for the music education majors.
Alice served as the Treasurer for the National School Orchestra Association and is a former member of the Virginia Beach Symphony. She co-wrote the Orchestra curriculum, pacing guides, and SOL alignments for Chesapeake Public Schools. Alice is a founding member of the Chesapeake Quartet which performs at weddings and various Chesapeake City events. She has been a guest conductor of All-City, District, and Regional Orchestras in Virginia and North Carolina. Alice and her husband Martin have served as judges for Orchestra Assessment Festivals and clinicians of Orchestra Director Workshops at the Virginia Music Educator Conferences. Under their direction, the Western Branch Orchestras have been guest performers and clinic demonstration groups for several state conferences.
Alice was recognized as the “2000 Teacher of the Year” at Western Branch Middle School. She credits her husband, Martin, and her principal, Craig D. Jones, for the growth of the Orchestra program in Western Branch. Their support and belief in her teaching have enabled the program to grow and succeed.
In 2002, Alice was invited to join the Beta Iota Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma International. She served as President for two terms where she began the Russell Memorial Library Partnership with performances geared toward reading and young children. The Beta Iota Chapter provided dinner, drinks, and dessert for the “TAG” students and librarians on program nights. In 2005, Alice was honored as the Volunteer of the Quarter for the Chesapeake Public Library.
Currently, Alice is a member of the National Association of Music Educators, the American String Teacher Association, the Virginia Music Educator Association, the Virginia Band and Orchestra Director Association, Western Branch Orchestra Parent Association, Girl Scouts of America, and Beta Iota Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma Society for Women Educators. She maintains a small private cello/bass studio and enjoys scrapbooking, genealogy research, and cooking with her family. Alice and Martin reside with their three children Morgan, Meredith, and Carter in the Western Branch section of Chesapeake, VA.
Leah Katz Rosenberg
Director, Jolliff Middle School
Leah Katz Rosenberg attended the Western Branch schools and began viola in the fifth grade orchestra program. She received her Bachelor of Music magna cum laude, with an instrumental music education concentration, from James Madison University and her Master of Music, with an instrumental music education concentration, from Ithaca College.
Mrs. Rosenberg’s public school orchestra teachers were Alice and Martin Glasco. She now has the pleasure of calling them colleagues as they both still teach in the Western Branch schools. Her private teachers were Linda Althoff, (now retired) violist with the Virginia Symphony Orchestra; Dr. Jeffrey Showell, (now retired) viola professor and director of the James Madison University School of Music; and Ramon Scavelli, (now retired) violist with the National Symphony Orchestra based in Washington, D.C.
Mrs. Rosenberg is entering her 12th year of teaching. Prior to teaching in Chesapeake, Mrs. Rosenberg taught fourth through sixth grade orchestra in the Fairfax County Public Schools. She was also a violist in the Manassas Symphony Orchestra. Mrs. Rosenberg began teaching at Jolliff Middle School in 2011. She is also a violist in Symphonicity: The Symphony Orchestra of Virginia Beach. She maintains a small private lesson studio out of her home.
Mrs. Rosenberg resides with her husband Jason, son Judah, daughter Zahava, and cat Zoe, in the Ghent section of Norfolk.
Director, Western Branch Intermediate School
Mrs. Sandra Crocker received her B.A. from Western Michigan University and her M.A.Ed. from Old Dominion University. In 1995 she began teaching instrumental music at Windsor Middle School and High School (Isle of Wight County, VA). In 2001, she was awarded “Teacher of the Year” at Kilby Shores Elementary (Suffolk, VA). In 2018, Mrs. Crocker joined the faculty at Western Branch Intermediate and Western Branch Primary (Chesapeake, VA).
Director, Chittum Elementary and Southwestern Elementary