Who We Are
Music Director & Conductor
Robert is a conductor, violinist, music educator and public speaker. Robert is the founder of the Haddonfield School of Music and its owner and director for 21 years, having sold the business in the Fall of 2022. He has performed as a violinist with numerous orchestras and ensembles at venues such as Carnegie Hall, The Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, Lincoln Center in New York, EPCOT Center in Walt Disney World, Universal Studios in Orlando, Mohegan Sun Resort, The Wells Fargo Center and The Spectrum. He regularly performs with the Montgomery County Chorale and Orchestra and is a musician and guest conductor with the Orchestra Society of Philadelphia. Robert has led orchestras such as Haddonfield’s Galaxy Orchestra and over a dozen chamber orchestras. He is the founder and conductor of the Legends Orchestra & Chorus and served as guest conductor for Laughing Bird, a Philadelphia-based professional vocal ensemble. In July of 2015, he led several chamber ensembles at Carnegie Hall in New York City. He is currently Director of Orchestral Operations at the New Jersey Symphony.
Emma Gibbins plays oboe, English horn, viola and basoon, and serves as vocalist and Assistant Conductor with the South Jersey Pops Orchestra. She is also director of our Oktoberfest Band. She earned her degree from Gordon College in Wenham, MA in 2013. She has conducted the band and orchestra at Ipswich High School, the Billerica High School Wind Ensemble, the pit orchestra of South Jersey Stageworks, the Hammonton High School Marching Band and the Northern Massachusetts Youth Orchestra. She also served as assistant conductor to the Gordon College Wind Ensemble and serves as vocal conductor with the Legends Orchestra & Chorus. As an oboist, she has also performed under Bruce Hangen of the Boston Conservatory and alongside Mia Chung of The Curtis Institute of Music. She currently teaches general music at Waterford Elementary School.
Rachel Smith is the principal flute and assistant conductor with the South Jersey Pops, and also directs the South Jersey Pops Flute Ensemble. She received her undergraduate degree in music education from the College of New Jersey, where she was a featured soloist with the Wind Ensemble and the winner of the orchestral solo competition, and completed her master’s degree in music education from Boston University. Rachel performs regularly with the Philadelphia Wind Symphony and is an active teacher and musician in the greater South Jersey area. She teaches elementary music and conducts the elementary band and chorus in the Medford Township School District.
Jaress Loo is a recent transplant to New Jersey from California. Along with being an experienced concertmaster in his previous city, he's also an accomplished pianist, guitarist, vocalist, composer, and arranger. He was one of the few students at his university who received a music scholarship for vocal jazz bass even though he was a business major. As a violinist, he was the concertmaster for a California-based Pops orchestra and a leader in the first violin section with its partner Symphony Orchestra, along with playing for multiple theatrical shows including some studio recording. As a pianist, guitarist, and vocalist, his experience is mainly in jazz and religious music (although not necessarily at the same time!), performing countless jazz gigs with his wife, recording a family heirloom jazz album, as well as serving as a worship leader in the last four churches he and his family have attended. His arrangement of "The Star Spangled Banner" earned local acclaim and a few years later, Jaress was recognized as a talented young composer with his violin concerto that he completed as an early college student. Currently, he resides in Cherry Hill with his wife and two sons, all of whom are also musicians. On the weekends, you can find him gigging around the South Jersey and Philadelphia area as the keyboardist and violinist. During the day, he is the Director of Software Development at Rowan University.
Shannon is a member of the South Jersey Pops cello section. Her passion for music began as a flutist in high school performing with the Chula Vista High Marching Spartan Alliance and competing in marching band competitions across Southern California. She stepped away from music to pursue a career and raise three amazing children. As an adult she found her passion once more in music as she learned to play the cello, joining the South Jersey Pops in 2017. By day, she works as a consultant in the field of Change Management and Training. Her other passions include cycling, snowboarding, martial arts, and woodworking.
Jaress Loo - Principal
Sierra Scott - Principal
Barbara Martin - Principal
Abbie Galie - Principal
Howard Press (Bass Clarinet)
Rachel Smith - Principal
Chuck Michel - Principle
Carl Vogel - Principal