Musician and Teacher
Emily Samson Tepe, the performer known as “Iva”
Salary: $60/hour lesson
Backstory: In her last year of pre-med at Princeton, the Tower Hill School grad embraced her childhood love, classical music, as a career. Then came Juilliard, Manhattan School of Music, and a Fulbright Scholarship in Sweden to study Scandinavian classical vocal music (which she will be performing at Old Swedes Church for the royal family this month).
The big break: It came when she happened to ask a woman where she got the Conan O’Brian shirt she had on. It led to tickets to the Conan O’Brian show where the woman worked, an invite for Tepe to sing on the show the next day, then several more appearances, meeting a producer at Conan’s Christmas party, and signing with a record label.
Back home: Tepe garnered a following in Sweden before moving home two years ago. Today she sings pop and classical music, records and teaches more than 40 students.