The Atholton High School Music Department has a long history of musical excellence and artistry since the school opened in 1966. The department serves over 300 students through both performance-based and non-performance-based classes. Included in the curriculum are three concert bands, three choirs, and three orchestras as well as classes in piano, theory, and music technology. In addition to the curricular classes, various extra-curricular ensembles and clubs are offered.
Director of Bands
Madeline Swartz is excited to be entering her first year as Director of Bands at Atholton High School. Previously, she was the director of instrumental music at Eastern Middle School where she taught three concert bands and two orchestras. In addition, she ran the jazz band, hosted orchestra club, and assisted with the school musical and show choir.
As a conductor, Ms. Swartz regularly participates in summer conducting institutes and is a 2023 recipient of the College Band Directors National Association’s Mike Moss Conducting Grant. She has guest conducted with the University of Maryland’s University Band, the Baltimore School for the Arts Wind Ensemble, and the Peabody Preparatory Youth Wind Ensemble and Wind Band. She has taught with programs such as the Peabody Preparatory and the Orchkids program, an el sistema initiative by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra to provide students access to free music programs in school and over the summers.
Ms. Swartz received her Bachelor’s of Music Education from the University of Maryland, College Park. She has studied flute with Sarah Frisof, Aaron Goldman, and Delandria Mills, and conducting with Andrea Brown, Elijah Wirth, and Anoa Green. She is a member of the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) and the Maryland Music Educators Association (MMEA).
Director of Choirs
Carolyn Freel has a diverse teaching background and incorporates a variety of tools and techniques in her classroom to engage all learners. She earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education, Voice from The Hartt School of Music in West Hartford, Connecticut. Upon graduation she began her career as a middle school choir director. She also won the position as Manager and Director of the Connecticut Children’s Chorus whom she took on a European tour.
Ms. Freel then moved back to Maryland where she taught at Hammond High School for six years. During this time, Carolyn served as HCPSS High School G/T Director, High School Vocal Music Team Leader and varsity field hockey head coach. Her ensembles consistently earned superior ratings while on their yearly tours up and down the East Coast and earned straight ones at the Maryland State Choral Festival. Her efforts at Hammond earned her Howard County Music Teacher of the Year in 2017.
Ms. Freel is excited to be at Atholton after completing her Masters Degree in Choral Conducting and two years teaching secondary choir in Oregon. She is eager to bring her her experiences back to Howard County and to the phenomenal music community at Atholton. In addition to teaching choir, Ms. Freel has done extensive work in the area of Musical Theater. She enjoys doing yoga, tending to her house plants, and snuggling her pup.
Director of Orchestras
Tim Reinhardt has been a music educator for 24 years. After teaching at Hammond Middle School for 17 of those years, he is excited to continue to serve much of the same community at Atholton High School. His orchestras have consistently received superior ratings and have a reputation for their musicality and student leadership. He is a National Board Certified teacher and was a Howard County Music Teacher of the Year finalist in 2012. He also served on the Music Leadership Team for HCPSS 2020-2023.
Mr. Reinhardt conducted the Howard County High School GT Orchestra (now HCYO) for 10 years, and has also conducted the High School Repertory Orchestra, Elementary School GT Sinfonia, and Harford String Orchestra. He currently conducts the Middle School GT Sinfonia. During his tenure, groups have performed at Midwest Clinic, Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, and the Kennedy Center.
A graduate of the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Mr. Reinhardt studied violin with Piotr Milewski and conducting with Terrence Milligan. He earned his Master’s Degree in Advanced Teaching Practices from National University. Mr. Reinhardt is a frequent adjudicator, clinician, guest conductor, and freelance violinist in the mid-Atlantic region. He resides in Sykesville, MD with his wonderful wife, Elizabeth, and his good pups, Leo and Stella.