First Coast Cultural Center fall season filled with programs, classes, workshops

$40K matching grant challenge under way


First Coast Cultural Center is launching its fall season with new programs to support the nonprofit, including youth and adult arts and music programs and classes for novice and professional students.

Matching grant

According to Donna Guzzo, president and executive director, the nonprofit was recently awarded a $40,000 matching grant from the Persbacker-Wyman Family Foundation Matching Gift Challenge for the center’s Sound Connections Music Therapy program. Funds must be met by Nov. 1.

Diamond classes

Fall courses at the center feature virtual classes with master artist Ellen Diamond. Diamond’s classes are greatly sought-after by the local arts community, students and others. She is a renowned and highly collected landscape artist working in contemporary impressionistic and abstract style.

She resides in Jacksonville and holds her virtual classes exclusively with First Coast Cultural Center.

Music lessons

Virtual private piano, violin and cello lessons with Sabrina Krisberg are also popular for young and adult students at the center. Krisberg has been an instructor at the center for more than eight years. She has been playing the cello for more than 25 years and performs locally.

Her student, Dr. Roya Rouhani of Jacksonville, has benefitted from membership at the center. Rouhani has played at several events at the center including gallery openings and benefit events.

Rouhani plans to continue her adult arts and music interests with painting classes and workshops.

“I have had a love and passion for the arts and music all my life, grew up as a child playing the piano, but my dream always was playing the cello, as I felt drawn to its beautiful sound,” said Rouhani. “I started taking lessons with Sabrina about five years ago, all the way from the beginning when I didn’t even know how to hold the cello or the bow. Sabrina understands these challenges and helps make the learning process fun and nonintimidating. She is an amazing teacher, being flexible in her schedule and teaching style to what best suits the student, and she understands the difference in approach to teaching adults and children.”

Other highlights

Additional classes and workshops this fall season include “Classical Oil Still Life Painting” with Marisela Quiros; “Animals and Acrylics” with Nikole Cooney; “Basics in Watercolors” with Teresa Cook; “Arts + Medicine: Group Art Clinic, Sculpting Animals in Paperclay and Epoxy Clay” with Nikole Cooney; “Techniques of the Masters in Water and Skies Workshop” with David Dunlop; “In Nature's Garden Workshop” with master artist David Dunlop; artist lecture with master artist David Dunlop; “Flowers, Cactus, and Plants Workshop” with Teresa Cook; “Total Sculpture in Clay” with Peter Rubino; “Christmas Card Watercolor Workshop” with Teresa Cook; virtual private voice lessons with Stephanie Bennie; virtual private piano lessons with Stephanie Bennie; and a variety of resin classes, workshops and events.

First Coast Cultural Center also offers community studio and practice techniques space for participants who are required to bring supplies and materials in the open studio.

Individual, family, artist and patron memberships are required for enrollment and review of program policies.

For more information about programs, workshops, costs, dates and times, call Jill Titcomb at 904-280-0614, ext. 1206, or go to

Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, with after-hour appointments available.

First Coast Cultural Center is located at 3972 3rd St. South, Jacksonville Beach.


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