Meet the people behind the music!

Neal Kassanoff


I founded Groundwork Music Project on the notion that being musical is a birthright, and not simply a hobby or profession cultivated by the few.

I have written songs for many project, from my own rock recordings, to soundtracks for film, to co-writes to songs that others have recorded and made their own. It has been a pleasure to use my writing skills as a key element to the curriculum that is Groundwork Music Project.

Daniel Piccuirro


I got involved with Groundwork Music Project because I saw how much positivity could come from one good musical experience. People who make music together understand that harmony is a basic human need, and we all yearn for it.

I am drummer, arranger, composer, guitar player, producer and teacher. I have studied at Berklee School Music and I have gone on to make my musical life in Austin, and to have been part of Groundwork Music Project’s efforts for over a decade.

Inonge Khabele

Board Member

I am happy to work with GroundWork Music Project because music is one of the greatest gifts to give a child. It opens their minds, nurtures their creativity, teaches them discipline and math and overall, is fun. Children who have at least one discipline (they look forward to), and opportunities to master a skill and experience joy in their accomplishments, are able to thrive in any situation. The arts are essential to human beings. I am honored to be on the board and help get it to as many children as possible, no matter their parents' or guardians' financial status.

Inonge is the Chief Visionary Officer of the Ko Team. She leads the team to maintain the integrity of the vision of the Ko ecosystem. She researches, conducts interviews, and fundraises. Inonge specializes in storytelling as a powerful tool for personal, business and societal transformation, and collaborates with the training and development and marketing teams to ensure language and vision are consistent and congruent. She also curates and maintains Ko’s history.

Inonge hopes that her writings, interviews, and art move and cause people to think, dream, or simply want to make art for themselves. She loves storytelling, especially folk-tales, fairy tales, fables, and urban legends, and considers it the original human technology that evolved with opposable thumbs. Inonge believes that through conscious examination of the narratives we are given to live by, we can reframe them to live life more purposefully and in harmony with others. Approaching others with a beginner’s mind and an open heart is the key to solving the problems in life. She loves to make things with her hands and is an avid gardener in Spring and Summer, and an equally avid painter in the Fall and Winter.

Inonge is a Co-chair of the Austin-Maseru Sister Cities Committee of Austin Sister Cities, Intl., and a member of the Austin Chapter of Jack & Jill of America, Inc.

Inonge graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Art degree from Howard University and majored in Painting and minored in Graphic Design and Art History.

Inonge’s expertise are writing, storytelling, copywriting, editing, graphic design and user experience design.

Krysti Subieta

Board Member

Music revolutionizes education -- activating learning, creativity and building confidence. GroundWork makes music lessons accessible those who need it the most!

Krysti is a singer, songwriter, producer, actress and voice coach entrepreneur in Austin, Texas.  She has two music albums released worldwide, an Electrical Engineering degree, and a recently certified Vocal Stylist from Berklee College of Music.

If Krysti could have any superpower, she would choose telepathy to transmit stories directly to your mind.  She loves to dance salsa and bachata and chill with her four cat babies.

Chloe Weiss Gatewood

Board President

I am honored to have the opportunity to be a part of the board of The Groundwork Music Project moving forward. I fully support GroundWork Music Project’s mission to bring the language of music to all children.

Chloe Weiss Gatewood is deeply rooted in the Austin community. Born and raised in Austin, she is a graduate of Austin High and The University of Texas, Austin. She worked in education in Austin for 12 years and discovered Groundwork Music Project when her children attended Neal's preschool music classes over 10 years ago. Chloe and her family have moved to the Texas Hill Country, where she works as a realtor and interior designer. She continues to be involved in the community and is active in fundraising for her children's schools and for local causes.

Andrew Custer

Board Secretary

Virtually every writer I know would rather be a musician.

-Kurt Vonnegut

Andrew is a software quality assurance professional based in Los Angeles. He has worked as both individual contributor and team lead, building high performing engineering and operations teams at Amazon, T-Mobile, and Snap, among others. He's been watching GroundWork grow over the last 15 years and is now excited to lend whatever he can to help take it to the next level.

Kris Wade

Board Treasurer

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Kris Wade is a wiz on the bass no less than he is with the books. He arrived to Groundwork Music Project, first as a musician, and has now taken a place at the table of the organization’s leadership. His experience with the music business, and with Groundwork specifically, is invaluable. In addition to remaining active as a musician. Kris is the CFO of The Other Ones Foundation, which provides opportunities for the homeless to better their circumstances.


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