Janelle Zook Cunalata received her Masters of Music (Conducting) from Sam Houston State University with the American Band College and a B.S. degree in Music Education from Penn State University with an Oboe Performance Certificate. Janelle is an active composer, arranger and music educator in central Pennsylvania. She is passionate about writing compelling, exciting, and intriguing music that spurs creativity and teamwork in ensembles.
Janelle taught orchestra and band in the Southern Lehigh and Bethlehem Area School Districts before moving to Ecuador in 2010. In the city of Riobamba, she taught large and small group instrumental music and composition lessons to students of varying ages. While in Ecuador, Janelle won an audition to play first oboe with the Ecuador National Symphony and she also expanded her musical endeavors by discovering music composition. Upon returning stateside in 2016, Janelle expanded her writing to include diverse styles and instrumentation inspired by music composition teachers, Dr. Mark Lochstampfor and Dr. Scott Watson.
Since moving to the states, Janelle is music director for the K-12 music program at Hinkletown Mennonite School in central PA. As an educator, Janelle is challenged daily to pass the joy of music-making on to the next generation through teaching and composing for students of all levels.
When not composing or motivating students, she can be found exploring the unknown, hosting family and friends, serving a diverse community with a Christian ministry and spending time with her husband, Franklin, and their daughters, Elizabeth and Emily.
Janelle is a member of the American Society for Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) and The National Association for Music Education (MENC).