Introducing our 2020 – PMR:Online Faculty

Artist Spotlight

Includes Masterclasses, 5 minute warm ups, Q and A’s and performances from:

BRASS: Cornet: Mark Wilkinson Soprano Cornet: Martin Britt  Horn: Helen Varley    Euphonium: David Thornton  Baritone: Helen Harrelson  Trombone: Bones Apart  Tuba: Les Neish  Percussion: TorQ (Quartet), Andrea Venet, Darrell Bueckert & Gavin Pritchard PMR+ Clarinet: Peter Stoll Saxophone: Glenn Gillis Flute: Carolyn Rathgeber Double Reeds: Arlysse Quiring

Centre Stage Topics

Topics and discussions for all musicians featuring:

  –  Joseph Parisi  –  Tabby Kerwin  –  Joanna Ross-Hersey – Dean McNeill  – Marcus Santos – – Tom Davoren  –  Shelley Jagow – Allan Molnar – Jeff Ball – Gillian MacKay – Lucy Pankhurst – Velvet Brown – Raquel Rodriquez Samayoa –

Mark Wilkinson

Mark Wilkinson – Cornet (Spotlight Artist)

Mark started playing the cornet aged 6 with his local band Ellenbrook and Boothstown before moving to the Walkden Band and then Besses Boys aged 13 where he stayed for 5 years on Principal Cornet. During this time Mark was also appointed Principal Cornet with the ‘National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain.’ When he was 18 Mark joined the Wingates Band on Principal Cornet for 2 years before accepting Howard Snells offer to join the Britannia Building Society Band (now Foden’s) on Principal Cornet in 1992. During this time he has been privileged to have won every major contest with Foden’s including the British Open, National Finals, European Championships, Swiss, French and American Opens as well as numerous victories at the All England Masters Contest, Area Contest and Brass in Concert entertainment competitions.

As well as performing in France, America, Holland, Belgium, Norway, Australia, Switzerland, Italy and Ireland as a soloist Mark is also heavily involved in Youth education. Mark enjoyed 3 years as the cornet tutor with the ‘National Children’s Brass Band of Great Britain’ and has been an entrance examiner and cornet tutor with the ‘National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain’ since 2000. Mark has also appeared as a cornet tutor with the ‘National Youth Brass Band of Wales’ ‘National Youth Band of Switzerland’ as well as a guest soloist with the ‘National Youth Brass Band of Denmark.’

As well as being a founder member of the ‘Northern Ireland Armagh Summer School’ Mark is in demand on various summer schools in this country and abroad.

In 2010 Mark was appointed as ‘Visiting Cornet Tutor’ at the Royal Northern College of Music, Cornet Tutor at the ‘University of Salford’ and Cornet/Trumpet Tutor at ‘Manchester Metropolitan University.’

In 2013 Mark released a Solo cd entitled ‘Milestone’ which received critical acclaim, designed and produced a range of cornet mouthpieces produced by ‘Pickett Brass’ and was appointed Band Manager of Foden’s Band.

Mark is in demand in this country and abroad as a cornet soloist, teacher, conductor and clinician.  Mark is also in demand as an adjudicator and has adjudicated at a number of leading contests including various Area Contests, National Finals, Swiss and Belgium Nationals, Grand Shield, Pontins, Butlins and the All England International Masters. Mark was appointed on the ‘Association of Brass Band Adjudicators’ Executive Committee in January 2017 and became Chairperson of the Association in January 2018.

Helen Varley (@HelenVarlz) | Twitter

Helen Varley – Horn (Spotlight Artist)

We are delighted to bring Helen back to our PMR faculty after she was our feature soloist in 2017. Helen was brought up in Yorkshire, an area well known for its prolific banding heritage, and was taught to play by her mentor James Shepherd, former principal cornet of the Black Dyke Band.

Helen spent many years as solo horn of the BT Band, followed by several years as solo horn at the YBS / Hammonds Saltaire Band.  Helen has also been the horn player with the highly successful 10-piece brass ensemble James Shepherd Versatile Brass, and in 2013 Helen joined the Black Dyke on 1st horn.

In 2003 and 2004 Helen reached the finals of the British Open Solo contest, on both occasions winning the instrumental title of Champion Horn Soloist, a prize which she won again in 2008.

Helen studied Physics with Acoustics at Salford University, and worked for over a decade as an acoustic consultant for the UK’s largest architectural practice, involved in the design and construction of building projects around the UK and abroad, including concert halls and educational buildings.

In 2016 Helen left the construction industry to follow her passion in music, undertaking a Masters degree in performance at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester.  Helen is now developing a successful teaching career, and is currently tenor horn tutor at Salford University, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, the Junior RNCM and Chethams School of Music, as well as working as a peripatetic brass teacher for Bradford Music Service and providing occasional teaching work at Kneller Hall Royal Military School.

Helen was delighted to accept the position of solo horn at the Grimethorpe Colliery Band in 2017, a band that she has admired from a young age ever since hearing the wonderful sound of a brass band for the first time on Grimethorpe’s acclaimed CD ‘Classic Brass’.

Bones Apart Trombone (Spotlight Artists)

bones apart trombone quartet | Quartet, Trombone, Trombone player


Highly acclaimed trombone quartet Bones Apart has established itself as one of the world’s leading chamber ensembles. Since forming in 1999, this unique group went on to win the prestigious Royal Over-Seas League Competition, Rio Tinto Ensemble Prize and Miller Trophy, and has performed at major venues including London’s Wigmore Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Fairfield Halls, Royal Festival Hall, St. James’s Palace, St. Martin-in-the-Fields and Symphony Hall in Birmingham. Bones Apart has also appeared on television and radio, and been featured in articles in Muso Magazine and the Brass Herald in addition to broadcasts on BBC television and radio. 

The quartet has appeared as a guest artist at many national and international music festivals including the Cayman Arts Festival, Edinburgh International Festival, International Belgian Brass Academy, International Trombone Festival, Leicester International Music Festival, Lieksa Brass Festival, Music In The Round, Royal Over-Seas League Arts, Sauerland Herbst Festival and the Vilnius Festival. This has involved touring throughout Europe, the United States, Japan and the Caribbean.

The members of the ensemble (L to R):  Sarah WilliamsHelen VollamBecky Smith and Jayne Murrill bring together a wealth of performing experience at the highest level, from symphony and chamber orchestra, early and contemporary music, to brass band and jazz. 

The group is keenly involved in education and outreach projects and is often invited to give masterclasses and ensemble coaching at schools and conservatoires. Recent masterclasses have been given at the Juilliard School of Music in New York, Rutgers State University in New Jersey, the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and the Royal Northern College of Music.

Bones Apart has recently become an ambassador for pBone, a new plastic trombone designed to encourage more interest in the trombone and making music. Through this initiative Bones Apart has given a series of highly successful schools workshops demonstrating music and the pBone to primary school children.

Their hugely diverse recital programmes incorporate music of all styles and genres including baroque, classical, latin, jazz, popular and contemporary music. Bones Apart has commissioned many works for trombone quartet from composers such as Gary Carpenter, Matthew Taylor, Christian Lindberg, Dan Jenkins and John Kenny.

Bones Apart has recorded a number of CDs – All We Want For Christmas (2012), ten (2009), four4four (2009) and Enigma (2006). The quartet play on Conn-Selmer trombones and are proud to be associated with Wallace Mutes.

David Thornton (@thorntoneuph) | Twitter

David Thornton – Euphonium (Spotlight Artist)


Dr. David Thornton is regarded as one of the foremost euphonium players and teachers of his generation and has a global reputation. His work as a soloist, conductor and educator is renowned throughout the brass playing world to have a distinct hallmark of extreme virtuosity, professionalism and an ability to connect with audiences like few others in his field.

His work within the brass band world has seen him at the top flight for almost twenty years. He has held solo euphonium positions with the Fairey Band (1997-2000), the Black Dyke Band (2000-2010) and the Brighouse & Rastrick Band (2011-2015) having won five National titles, three British Opens and one European Championship during this time. David is currently the solo euphonium player with the world famous Foden’s Band.

Born in Nottingham in 1978, David began his euphonium lessons at just eight years old and only five years later became the first ever euphonium player to gain a place at Chetham’s School of Music, one of the UK’s most prestigious institutions for specialist musical education.

Since then his success has earned him many awards, such as scholarships from the Countess of Munster Trust and the Yamaha Music Foundation of Europe, a hatrick of solo awards at the National Euphonium Conference 1995, 1997 and 1999, first prize at the Verso Il Millenio International Euphonium Competition, but most notably as the International Euphonium Player of the Year 2001.

David is constantly working to seek out new solo repertoire in as many different guises as possible. He has given world premieres by composers such as Philip Wilby, Peter Meechan, Simon Dobson, Torstein Aagaard-Nilsen, Peter Graham, Phillip Venables, Lucy Pankhurst, Richard Rock, Kit Turnbull and D. Edward Davis.

As a recording artist David has released four solo albums. His debut CD, ‘Three Worlds’, was awarded Solo CD of the Year for 2004 by the British Bandsman magazine. David released his second solo album, ‘Devil’s Duel’ in May 2007, Sempre Libera in January 2014 and Parallel Realities in March 2015. Furthermore, David features as a soloist on 30 different albums of band music, including ‘Epic Brass’ and ‘Jubilee Brass’ – live recordings of two concerts at the Royal Albert Hall.

Considering David’s relatively young age, his achievements in education are also quite remarkable. He tutors at the RNCM, the University of Huddersfield and Chetham’s School of Music. His current and former students already hold principal positions in many leading bands around the UK.

David is a course director for the Bolsover Brass Band Summer School and has been a course tutor for the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain, National Youth Brass Band of Wales, National Children’s Brass Band of Great Britain, National Youth Wind Orchestra of Great Britain, the International Brass Band Summer School (Swansea) and the Wessex Band Summer School. David is also a fully certified member of ABBA.

David Thornton is a Sterling Musical Instruments performing artist and consultant and plays exclusively on the Sterling Virtuoso Euphonium. He also holds an undergraduate degree from the Royal Northern College of Music and a DMA from the University of Salford.

Tuba Artist - Les Neish added a new photo. - Tuba Artist - Les ...

Les Neish – Tuba (Spotlight Artist)


Les Neish has created a career as a soloist, chamber musician and educator with a world-wide reputation.

Known for his musicianship, artistry and high level of communication, Les dazzles audiences with fabulous technique and stunning musicianship.

Performing the first solo tuba recital at the Bridgewater Hall, Manchester and the first tuba player to be awarded the Worshipful Company of Dyers Award at the Royal Overseas League Competition, Les has always pushed the boundaries.

His 3 solo releases, Salt of the Earth, Shine and Affinity have won numerous awards including Brass Band World, British Bandsman, 4barsrest.com Solo CD of the Year and the prestigious Roger Bobo Award in Recording Excellence from the International Tuba Euphonium Association.

Away from solo performance Les is part of the tuba section of the Brass Band and as a chamber musician is a member of the Fine Arts Brass Ensemble, a group with a 30 year history having performed in over 60 countries. He has also performed with orchestras throughout the UK, including the Halle, RTE Concert Orchestra, Ulster Orchestra and London Symphony Orchestra.

Alongside his performing commitments Les is tuba tutor at the Royal Northern College of Music, RNCM Junior School, Salford University and Birmingham Conservatoire. He has also given masterclasses at the Trinity College and Royal Academy of Music, London.

He has served as tutor on the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain, Scotland, Wales and Switzerland and has performed workshops and classes throughout the UK, Europe, USA, South America, Japan and Australia.

TorQ  – Percussion (Spotlight Artists)

Face to Face and Fabulous! | Niagara Symphony Orchestra


Described as “outstanding – no, make that astonishing!” (Ottawa Citizen) and as having a “sense of unbreakable continuity and energy” (Toronto Star), Canada’s TorQ Percussion Quartet continues to bring new vitality to percussion repertoire and performance. Richard BurrowsAdam CampbellJamie Drake and Daniel Morphy have given recital tours across Canada and the US and performed at Ottawa Chamberfest, Open Ears Contemporary Music Festival, Indian River Festival, Stratford Summer Music, the Music Garden Toronto, the Canadian Opera Company concert series, the Percussive Arts Society International Convention, and many others. They have also performed as a featured soloist with the Toronto Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, Orchestra Symphonique de Montréal (for which they were recently awarded the Prix Opus from the Quebec Music Council), Stuttgart Chamber Choir, University of Toronto Wind Ensemble, Ontario Honour Band and University of Saskatchewan Wind Ensemble (WASBE 2015), amongst others. 

TorQ is committed to developing and performing Canadian music: they have premiered over 80 pieces (including three concertos) by composers such as Nicole Lizée, Christos Hatzis, Michael Oesterle and Dinuk Wijeratne, and each ensemble member also contributes compositions and arrangements.  They have released four albums on their own label Bedoint Records (the most recent of which, Modulations featured TorQ commissions by Daniel Morphy, Christos Hatzis and and Peter Hatch) and their recording (with soloist Ben Reimer) of Lizée’s “Katana of Choice” was nominated for a 2019 Juno for “Classical Composition of the Year.” 

Strong advocates for musical education, TorQ has played school concerts for more than 130,000 students and given masterclasses and workshops at universities across North America. The TorQ Percussion Seminar, run collectively by all four TorQ members and now in its eighth year, has collaborated with Acadia University and Stratford Summer Music and this year will be returning to work with the Lunenburg Academy of Music Performance in Nova Scotia.

TorQ endorses Yamaha Percussion, Innovative Percussion, Dream Cymbals, Black Swamp Percussion and Remo Percussion. 

“…confidence, energy, and subtlety shone darkly in a powerful and theatrical performance of a work that stands outside of trends or time. They may be young men, but they have old souls.” (www.MusicalToronto.org)

Helen Harrelson – Baritone (Spotlight Artist)


Helen Harrelson began her playing career on euphonium with the Rotherham Schools Band before progressing to the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain. She later changed to baritone and was accepted at the Royal Northern College of Music where she studied with James Gourley, Sandy Smith, Steven Mead, and Bob Childs. Over the past 20 years Helen has been a member of some of the world’s finest brass bands including Black Dyke, Fodens, YBS, & Fountain City with whom she has toured, recorded and competed. Helen has won numerous national titles both in the UK and USA.

Helen has been a guest artist and clinician for the North American Brass Band Summer School, the International Woman’s Brass Conference, the International Tuba & Euphonium Conference, Kansas Music Educators Association, Missouri Music Educators Association and received an award for outstanding contribution to music education from the Kansas Bandmasters Association.

Summer 2007 saw Helen take a voluntary sabbatical to Kansas City to perform with the Fountain City Brass Band and develop their youth brass band program. The Fountain City Youth Brass Academy has gone on to win 5 national titles in the last four years and the program had over 130 students currently enrolled. Her love of Kansas City saw her return back to the US in 2008 as Instrumental Music Teacher at St. James Academy. Since then, she has developed the school’s band and orchestra program and won two Blue Star Awards for Outstanding Pit Orchestra (Beauty and the Beast 2013, & Guys & Dolls 2016). In 2015 Helen completed her Masters of Arts in Music at the UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance.

ABOUT | joseph-parisi

 Joseph ParisiBeyond the Notes, a journey in Musicianship

Joseph Parisi is a professor at the UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance where he conducts the Conservatory Wind Ensemble and serves as a music education and conducting faculty member. He is serving UMKC as Director of the Interdisciplinary PhD Program. Recognized as one of the most well-rounded faculty members at UMKC, Parisi has amassed an impressive career as a conductor, performing artist, pedagogue, and scholar.

He has made professional appearances both nationally and abroad conducting music festivals, adjudicating ensembles, and presenting clinics, research, lectures and workshops throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, United Kingdom, and China.

As Parisi embarks on his 17th year at UMKC, he continues to collaborate with many outstanding artists and composers, commission new works, and perform throughout the world. Recognized as one of America’s outstanding brass conductors, Parisi is the principal conductor of Summit Brass at the Rafael Méndez Brass Institute (www.mendezbrassinstitute.com) and Fountain City Brass Band (www.fcbb.net). Both groups have a rich and distinguished history of outstanding brass playing, and under Parisi’s leadership, Fountain City Brass Band leads the United States as one of the world’s top brass bands. Parisi has been recognized numerous times with the Brass Band Conductor of the Year Award, and received the winning conductor award at the Scottish Open Championship. Fountain City returned to the U.K. in 2017 to perform at the Brass in Concert Championship in Gateshead and the Scottish Open Brass Band Championship in Perth winning numerous awards and becoming the highest ranked American Band in history (12th in the world). Fountain City Brass Band’s newest recording, Celtic Impressions, has received wide-spread praise for its ensemble precision, excitement, and musicality.

Parisi completed a bachelor’s degree in music education at the State University of New York at Potsdam (Crane School of Music); a master’s degree in trumpet performance and a PhD in instrumental conducting/music education, both from Florida State University. While at the UMKC Conservatory, Parisi has won numerous awards including the Kauffman Outstanding Service Award, the Kauffman Excellence in Teaching Award, and the Kauffman Award for Outstanding Research and Creative Activity.

Tom Davoren in East Anglia | The Brass Herald

Tom Davoren – History of Brass Bands

Tom Davoren (b.1986) is a composer and band director with a growing international reputation. His music for bands has been premiered, recorded and commissioned the world over by artists including ‘The President’s Own’ United States Marine Band, Central Band of the Royal Air Force, Brass Band of Battle Creek, Cory Band, Philippe Schartz (Principal Trumpet BBC National Orchestra of Wales), Glenn Van Looy (International Euphonium Soloist) and Steven Mead (International Euphonium Soloist). 

Performances of his work have been given at New York’s Carnegie Hall, the BASBWE London Festival, Royal Northern College of Music Festival of Brass, World Music Contest (Kerkrade), Jeju International Wind Ensemble Festival (South Korea), International Tuba Euphonium Conferences, International Trumpet Guild Conferences, Schagerl Brass Festival, Swiss Solo Quartet Championship and the solo and band sections of the National Band Championships of New Zealand, Australia and Great Britain. He also has a special relationship with the Belgian ensemble Brassband Buizingen, acting as their Associate Composer through 2015 / 16 and became Composer in Residence with the Band of the Welsh Guards, of the Household Division of the British Army, in 2019.

​Away from traditional band repertoire Tom composed a fanfare for the Royal opening  of the fifth National Assembly for Wales in 2016 whilst his work ‘Legacy’, commissioned by Tredegar Town Band and the Aneurin Bevan Society, celebrated the 70th Anniversary of the British National Health Service through a performance at Westminster Palace, the Houses of British Parliament. His first work for orchestra, Tourbillon, was premiered by Denmark’s Aalborg Symfoniorkester in 2017.

As a conductor Tom began his career with the BTM Band from South Wales. He has since gone on to success as Musical Director of Desford Colliery Band, Associate Conductor of the Fairey Band and Musical Director of Bristol’s Filton Concert Brass, who he has established as one of the UK’s newest championship bands. In 2015 he directed Maidstone Wind Symphony to the National Concert Band Championship title and was honoured to serve as conductor of the National Youth Brass Band of Wales in 2016.  He has also led conducting students and directed the brass band at the University of Salford since 2016. You can view Tom’s contesting history at www.brassbandresults.co.uk.

Tom studied tuba with Nigel Seaman at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama and holds Bachelors and Masters degrees in composition having studied with Anthony Powers and Arlene Sierra at Cardiff University School of Music. In 2009/10 he was awarded a research scholarship from the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the Welsh Livery Guild Composition Award. He was also a BASCA British Composer Award nominee in 2011, a prizewinner at the EBBA European Composers Competition 2012 and the recipient of a Harvey Phillips Award for excellence in composition, presented by the International Tuba Euphonium Association, in 2014. Tom is currently a Doctoral Teaching Assistant in Wind Conducting at the University of Kansas, USA, working with Dr. Paul Popiel.

Mode for - Tabby Kerwin - Home | Facebook

Tabby Kerwin: Community Music and Mental Health.              www.modefor.co.uk

Tabby Kerwin is a published writer, conversationalist, musician, performance coach and mental health advocate and trainer.

Based on her knowledge as a trained performer and her own experience of mental health issues and grief following the death of her husband in 2018, brother in 2014 and father when she was 16-years-old she hosts open and honest conversations and coaching for your creative mind to perform with better mental health based on her own approach of The Three Ps: Possibility, Productivity and Performance.

We all have mental health and by focussing on lifting the stigma surrounding this and helping people to manage their own mental wellbeing, balance this with everyday life and be aware of the signs of mental ill health in others, we can start to develop a society with stronger mental and physical health.

In 2020, Tabby has published her new #1 Best Selling book ‘The Three Taboos: Cancer, Grief and Mental Health’ with an accompanying podcast and a new downloadable mental health awareness course to help manage stress, build confidence and increase awareness around mental health.

Marcus Santos - SABIAN Cymbals

Marcus Santos – Grooversity: Rhythm 101


A contemporary percussionist and educator, Marcus, is a native of Bahia, Brazil. He commits his life to the study, teaching and performance of his hometown’s Afro-Brazilian music and heritage.

Marcus performed with several world renown artists such as the Gypsy Kings (Spain), Daniela Mercury (Brazil) and the Brand New Heavies (England). He has also performed for the president of Brazil, TEDx and with the “One World Band” produced by MTV. Marcus also played at the Sony Pictures Oscar nominated movie ‘Rachel’s getting Married’ with Anne Hathaway. He has been honored with the 2013 KOSA Recognition award, Outstanding Arts Performer Award by the Brazilian Immigrant Center (2008) as well as Outstanding Percussionist Award by Berklee College of Music in 2004.

Marcus currently teaches in the Boston area at New England Conservatory, Middlesex Community College and Somerville High School. He is the author of the DVD ‘Modern Approach to Pandeiro’ and performed in the music education DVD ‘Musically Speaking II’ by BOSE. Marcus has lead workshops on Afro-Brazilian percussion and music for Social Change in festivals, universities and conventions around the world such as Fiesta Del Tambor (Cuba), Carnegie Hall (NYC), PASIC (USA) and Harvard University. He is currently the artist director of the Grooversity global drumming network project that includes twenty four drumming groups from the US, Canada, Germany, Mexico and France.

ZigZags | Joanna Ross Hersey

Joanna Ross-Hersey – (Host) Panel Discussion

 A native Vermonter, tuba and euphonium soloist Joanna Ross Hersey has produced two solo albums, O quam mirabilis (2010) and Zigzags (2015), featuring music by composers including Hildegard von Bingen and Libby Larson in combination with her own compositions. Joanna is President of the International Women’s Brass Conference, Associate Professor of Tuba and Euphonium at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, and a Yamaha and Parker Mouthpiece Performing Artist. In collaboration with Parker Mouthpieces, Joanna has debuted the Hersey Artist Model Tuba Mouthpiece, featuring a three component stainless steel design.

As a member of the Alchemy Tuba-Euphonium Quartet, Joanna performs throughout North America and Europe and can be heard on the group’s recordings Village Dances (1997), Prelude and Groove (2012), and their newest album being edited for summer 2019 release. For fifteen years Alchemy has been in residence each February at the Horn-Tuba Workshop in Jever, Germany where the group performs recitals, gives master-classes and conducts ensembles.  As a composer, her work is published on her own website as well as with Cimarron Music Press, including the St. Cecelia Series, featuring her arrangements of music by women and minority composers.

Joanna studied with Dan Perantoni at Arizona State University, received a Master of Music in Tuba Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music studying with Chester Schmitz, and earned her Doctor of Musical Arts in Tuba Performance from the Hartt School. As Principal Tubist with the United States Coast Guard Band, Joanna performed throughout the country as a soloist and clinician after winning the position at the age of nineteen. Joanna has played for three U.S. Presidents, performed at numerous state functions for visiting dignitaries, and has appeared on The Today Show and Good Morning America. In her freelance career she has performed with artists including Placido Domingo, Roberta Flack, Marilyn Horne, Arlo Guthrie, Michael Bolton, Lee Greenwood, Arturo Sandoval and Jack Nicholson.

Joanna’s research interests focus on brass history and women in 20th Century American music, and her work has been published in the International Tuba Euphonium Journal, the International Women’s Brass Conference Newsletter, the Historic Brass Society Journal, the North Carolina Music Educator’s Journal and the Journal of Historical Research in Music Education. Joanna has also contributed chapters to three books, Bands of Sisters: U.S. Military Bands During World War IIWomen’s Bands in America: Performing Music and Gender, and for 2019 release, An Early History of Music Education in Universities: The Normal School Years.

UNF - COAS: Music - Andrea Venet

Andrea Venet – Percussion (Spotlight Artist)


Dr. Andrea Venet is a percussion artist, soloist, educator, and composer specializing in contemporary and classical genres. She is currently Assistant Professor of Percussion and head of the department at the University of North Florida, where she directs the UNF percussion ensemble, teaches applied lessons, pedagogy, methods and percussion literature. Her creative activity includes performance, composition, and commissioning new works. 

As an international soloist, chamber musician, and clinician, Andrea maintains an active performance schedule, having held appointments in Europe, Japan, Canada, and Trinidad. Andrea has been a featured soloist at the Celebrate Marimba Festival, The Steve Weiss Mallet Festival (Barnes Foundation, PA), Prairie Music Residency (SK, Canada), with the Kutztown University Symphony, in addition to being a featured performer with SNL percussionist Valerie Naranjo, Ivan Trevino, the Lawson Ensemble, Project Trio, and the Eastman Percussion Ensemble. Early in her career, Andrea was a member of the award winning Santa Clara Vanguard Drum and Bugle Corps from 2002-2004 and performed with Grammy winning alternative band TOOL with the Gilbert Drumline in 2001.

Andrea has performed and presented at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention multiple times, the Florida and Virginia Music Educators Association conventions, The College Music Society National Conference, the International Trombone Festival, and has been invited to co-present at the World Symposium of Choral Music in Auckland, NZ in 2020 with Dr. Cara Tasher.

Dr. Venet’s percussion duo, Escape Ten, maintains a steady performance schedule touring as guest artists and clinicians nationally and internationally, consistently featured as chamber artists and clinicians at music festivals, concert series, conferences, and universities. Through collaboration with composer Eric Guinivan, they are the recipients of a marimba duo commission awarded from the prestigious Fromm Foundation entitled Illuminations (2018), which they premiered at the Cummer Museum in Jacksonville, FL. In 2016 they performed a Showcase Concert at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention, giving 3 world premieres. Select appearances include performances in Spain at the Ágora Actual Percussion and WASBE 2019 festivals, the Academy of the Performing Arts (UTT) in Trinidad, at the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia, The Eastman Summer Percussion Festival, and at the Leigh Howard Stevens Marimba Seminar. They have collaborated with composers Michael Burritt, Russell Hartenberger, Aurél Hollo, Emmanuel Séjourné, Ivan Trevino, Joe Locke, Steve Danyew, Steve Ridley​,​ Drew Worden​, and Kelly Rossum. As signature artists, ​Escape Ten has their own mallets (2020) and publication series of new percussion duos through Malletech/Keyboard Percussion Publications (KPP). You can hear them their albums, My Favorite Things (Parma Records, 2020) and Colours of a Groove (2014).

Andrea’s compositions and arrangements can be found self-published via her website, through Keyboard Percussion Publications (KPP), Tapspace, and Alfonse-Production, in addition to articles published with Percussive Notes and Rhythm!Scene magazines. A passionate educator, Andrea’s research involves pedagogy, with focus on college percussion education at various levels, classical improvisation and historically informed Baroque performance practice techniques for Bach on marimba. She has presented her lecture recital entitled “Affekt and Execution: Historical Performance Practice and Contemporary Techniques for performing Bach on Marimba” multiple times across the country. Andrea holds a DMA in Performance and Literature with a minor in Pedagogy, and the prestigious Performer’s Certificate from the Eastman School of Music. She received her Masters and Bachelors degrees from Rutgers and Arizona State University, respectively. Andrea is endorsed by Malletech, Remo, DREAM Cymbals, Black Swamp Percussion, and currently serves as the Percussive Arts Society Florida Chapter President

Dean McNeill - Owen Sound, Sweetwater Music Festival

Dean McNeill – Staying Engaged and In Shape

Downbeat magazine award winning Canadian trumpet player/composer Dean McNeill is a Full Professor at the University of Saskatchewan where he has taught applied trumpet, trumpet choir, jazz history, jazz ensemble, jazz materials, jazz improvisation, jazz pedagogy, and jazz arranging for many years.

A Full Professor at the University of Saskatchewan Canadian trumpet player/composer Dean McNeill has received a Special Recognition Award from the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival for his contributions to jazz in Saskatchewan. On the CD O Music (http://www.allangilliland.com/) Dean performed as soloist the composition Kalla which won the 2012 Western Canadian Music Award for Classical Composition of the Year.

A member of the Saskatoon Symphony (http://saskatoonsymphony.org) Dean directs the Saskatoon Jazz Orchestra (http://saskatoonjazzorchestra.wordpress.com/), UofS Jazz Ensemble (http://www.usask.ca/music/ensembles/jazzens.html) and the Saskatoon Jazz Society’s Jazz Workshop program (http://www.saskatoonjazzsociety.com/jazz-education-workshop/).

Dean has directed the International Music Camp’s Faculty Jazz Ensemble, the UofS Kenderdine Campus’ Jazz Composer’s Retreat program and has lead many of his own professional large and small jazz ensemble tours, many of which have been recorded by CBC Radio. A Yamaha artist Dean has performed as a guest artist with the National Youth Band of Canada, as well as with professional ensembles such as the Winnipeg, Edmonton, Vancouver Jazz Orchestras and the Calgary Creative Arts Ensemble.

Dean has adjudicated throughout Canada and the Unites States and performed alongside the likes of of Kenny Wheeler, Pat LaBarbera, Michael Cain, Hugh Fraser, Tom Banks, Brad Turner, Kelly Jefferson, David Braid, Bob Mintzer, Denzal Sinclaire, PJ Perry, David Braid, Ingrid Jensen, Jon Balantyne, Campbell Ryga and many others.

Dean holds music degrees from the University of North Texas (Masters), McGill University (Undergraduate), and Grant MacEwan University (Music Diploma). He has released two CDs respectively entitled Prairie Fire: Large Jazz Ensemble Music of Dean McNeill and Mélange: New Music For Trumpet and Piano (http://www.msrcd.com/1294/1294.html). Most recently Dean composed repertoire and performed on the CD Complete Rebirth of the Cool (http://www.cellarlive.com).

A recipient of the U of S Department of Music’s Dwaine Nelson Teaching Award Dean’s past administrative service has included Head of the U of S Department of Music (2004-2009) and serving as a board member on Jazz Canada (i.e. Canadian chapter of the International Association of Jazz Education) and the Canadian Music Centre (i.e. Prairie Region Board).


Jeff W. Ball – It takes a village…

Jeff W. Ball is the Founder, Artistic Director and Conductor of the Brooklyn Wind Symphony, established in 2008 as the Grand Street Community Band. From its original thirty members, the organization has grown into the seventy-piece Brooklyn Wind Symphony and allowed for the formation of two additional ensembles, the ninety-piece Grand Street Community Band and the seventy-piece Kings County Concert Band. The Brooklyn Wind Symphony is the first ever New York City based ensemble to be invited to perform at the Midwest Clinic and the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles Conference. The Metropolitan Music Community, a 501c3 non-profit corporation on which Jeff serves as a board member, oversees all three organizations.

Jeff is in his fifteenth year as Director of Bands and tenth year as Coordinator of Performing Arts at the Grand Street Campus (GSC) High Schools in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY. His responsibilities include direction of the GSC Wind Ensemble, Concert Band, Jazz Band A and Beginner Band as well as overseeing a large performing arts department comprising more than 160 pianists, 60 guitarists, and courses in musical theater and theater technology. The seven bands at GSC involve over 400 students from the three Title 1 (low income) high schools that make up the campus. Over 95% of the band students at GSC begin their musical training in the ninth grade. Despite this late start, the four concert bands and three jazz bands at the school consistently receive the top ratings of “Gold” and “Gold with Distinction” at the New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) festival, often participating at the highest levels of five and six. Jeff has given the presentation about his work at Grand Street titled “Successful Urban Band Director: Making it Work Where it Usually Doesn’t” at many state and national music education conferences.

Additionally, Jeff now serves as director of the New York City “All-City” High School Concert Band, a ninety-piece auditioned honors ensemble that meets weekly and comprises the finest high school age musicians from New York City. Jeff also spent five years as director of the Brooklyn College Conservatory of Music Wind Ensemble and as director of the New York City “All-City” High School Marching Band.

Jeff received his Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education and Jazz Studies from Ithaca College in 2003 and his Master’s Degree in Music Education from the same institution in 2008. He was a semi-finalist for the Grammy Music Educator of the Year award in 2018. Jeff is a member of NYSSMA, NYSBDA, NAfME, MEANYC, Pi Kappa Lambda and CBDNA. Jeff is a highly sought after guest conductor and clinician, having conducted bands on four continents.

Shelley Jagow – Getting to grips with intonation

Dr. Shelley Jagow is Professor of Music at Wright State University School of Music (Dayton, OH) where she serves as director of the Symphonic Band and Saxophone Quartet. She earned top honors in Music Education degrees from the University of Saskatchewan (Canada) and the University of Missouri (Columbia) where respective mentors include Marvin Eckroth, Dale Lonis, Martin Bergee and Wendy Sims. She earned her Ph. D. in Music Education at the Union Institute & University (Cincinnati) where Colonel Timothy Foley, Frank Battisti, and Edward Wingard served as her mentors. In addition to studies in education, saxophone and conducting, Shelley also earned the Certificate in Piano Performance IX from the Royal Conservatory of Music, and in 2009 was nominated for both the “Robert J. Kegerreis Distinguished Professor of Teaching” Award and the “Brage Golding Distinguished Professor of Research” Award.

As an artist clinician with Conn-Selmer, Hal Leonard, Meredith Music, and Vandoren, “Dr. J” enjoys working with school bands and presents clinics, performances, adjudications, and serves as honor band conductor at various state, national and international conferences and events. Venues include locations in various states/provinces/countries: Alberta, British Columbia, California, Connecticut, Florida, Kansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Italy, Manitoba, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Ohio, Ontario, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Quebec, Rhode Island, Saskatchewan, Scotland, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Washington D.C.; including conferences such as State Music Educators Conferences, the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic, the North American Saxophone Alliance (NASA), the International Society for Music Education (ISME), the College Music Symposium (CMS), the World Saxophone Congress, and the United States Navy Band International Saxophone Symposium.

Shelley also directs the WSU student Avion Saxophone Quartet, which can be heard on CDbaby.com. All members of the quartet are chosen annually on a highly selective audition process, and include music education and/or performance majors at Wright State University. The Avion Saxophone Quartet is a recipient of the Edgar Hardy Scholarship, the Dayton Chamber Music Society Scholarship, the Chamber Music Institute Fellowship, and the Wright State University Presidential Commendation for Excellence. The quartet has commissioned and premiered works from national composers all across the world. The group performs a diverse musical repertory and is often invited to perform at school, community, and professional events including the Ohio Music Educators Association (OMEA) State Conference, the Music Educators National Conference (MENC), the North American Saxophone Alliance (NASA) conferences, the International Society for Music Education (ISME), the United States Navy Band International Saxophone Symposium, and most recently the World Saxophone Congress in St. Andrews, Scotland. The Quartet has performed throughout the United States in Connecticut, Indiana, Nebraska, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Virginia, and Washington D.C. International performance tours include Japan, Italy and Scotland. Shelley herself can be heard performing on the Emeritus Recording label, on National Public Radio Performance Today, and America’s Millennium Tribute to ADOLPHE SAX, Volume XI by Arizona University Recordings.

Shelley is a regular contributing author to both The Music Director’s Cookbook (Meredith Music), and the Teaching Music Through Performance in Band series (GIA Music). She is also the author of the book and DVD Teaching Instrumental Music: Developing the Complete Band Program (Meredith Music)—a resource rapidly becoming the adopted textbook for music education degree study across the United States and Canada. Her most recent publications include Tuning for Wind Instruments: A Roadmap to Successful Intonation (Meredith Music), Intermediate Studies for Developing Artists on the Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Saxophone and Bassoon (Meredith), and The Londeix Lectures a 13+ hours DVD set archiving the historical music lectures of Professor Jean-Marie Londeix (and translated by William Street, University of Alberta).

Allan MolnarImprovisation

Allan Molnar is a recording artist, composer, vibraphonist, drummer and percussionist who currently resides in New York where he freelances in the music profession and holds the position of Jazz Lecturer at Lehman College (Bronx, NY). Prior to moving to NYC Allan was very musically active in Toronto, Canada. His experiences include many live and recorded performances in a variety of genres including jazz (Glen Hall, Roswell Rudd, Don Thompson, Phil Nimmons), Latin (Vibrason, Con-Cache, Larry Harlow) and pop (Nelly Furtado, Jarvis Church, Stacie Orrico). Allan contributed vibraphone tracks to Nelly Furtado’s Grammy and Juno Award-winning albums “Whoa Nelly” and “Folklore.”

 Allan spent 20 years teaching with the Toronto Catholic District School Board and successfully brought many elements of professional music to the classroom by way of his MIDI-assisted approach to teaching instrumental music. His students have benefited from the performance and compositional aspects of this innovative approach to creating music. More than 130 music teachers have been able to duplicate important elements of Allan’s program in their own schools as a direct result of his original teaching resources and many workshop appearances at conferences and universities.

Allan Molnar is a recipient of the prestigious “Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence.” He continues to work as an independent music education consultant and as a resource teacher for the Canadian Teachers Federation through the “Sharing Teaching Excellence” program.

Allan is a faculty member of the KoSA International Percussion Workshops, works as a clinician for Latin Percussion, ProMark Drumsticks, and Sabian Cymbals, and has served as chair for the Percussive Arts Society Music Technology Committee.

Allan is the cofounder and artistic director of The ALIVE Project (Accessible Live Internet Video Education) and provides arts-oriented distance learning opportunities for students in schools worldwide. Allan presently serves as Executive Producer/Producer and Artistic Director of the Johnny Pacheco Latin Music and Jazz Festival at Lehman College. 

Peter Stoll (Clarinet) Spotlight Artist

Known for his virtuoso energy on stage, creative musical arrangements and an entertaining way of speaking with the audience, Peter Stoll is one of Canada’s most innovative and versatile clarinetists. He was a prizewinner in the International Clarinet Society Competition, and also Solo Clarinetist with the World Orchestra of Jeunesses Musicales in Berlin and Vienna, which was broadcast on live television across Europe. Peter won First Prize in Chamber Music at the National Competitive Music Festival, for whose 50th Anniversary edition he was invited back as Woodwind Adjudicator, and as soloist in the Gala Celebration Concert in Winnipeg.

Peter has been guest soloist with orchestras in Canada and the United States, and was invited to Russia for solo performances with the Saratov Philharmonic’s “Volga Wind Ensemble” and to present masterclasses at the State Conservatory. International performances have also included twice at the ADeVantGarde Festival in Munich, Germany, as well as Finland, Great Britain, Holland and Belgium. In October 2013 he was flown to Japan to take part in the Yamaha Music Foundation’s “Junior Original Concert” at Bunkamura Hall in Tokyo. In October of 2014 Peter travelled to three cities in China on a new music exchange with conservatories there, organized by the University of Toronto.

Principal Clarinetist of the former Toronto Philharmonia for 10 years, Peter has continued to perform with many regional ensembles, including the Hamilton Philharmonic, Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, Niagara Symphony, Toronto Operetta Theatre, Toronto Masque Theatre, Opera York, Tapestry Opera, and the Talisker Players. In 2019 he won a Dora Mavor Moore Award as part of Best Ensemble-Opera, with Against the Grain Opera Theatre.

Summer festival performances have included a tour with the Swiss Piano Trio, the Ottawa and Vancouver Chamber Music Festivals, the Festival of the Sound, Manitoba’s Clear Lake Festival, the Niagara International Chamber Music Festival, the Banff Centre for the Arts, the Ottawa Valley Festival, the Toronto Summer Music Festival and the Music Garden, and as a Mentor with the Boris Brott Music Festival’s National Academy Orchestra for many years.

Peter teaches clarinet, chamber music, performance studies and The Business of Music at the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto. He is also a member of the Royal Conservatory of Music’s National College of Examiners, and is much sought after as an adjudicator at music festivals across the country. In 2014 Peter served as the chief compiler of the new Clarinet Syllabus for RCM Examinations. He continues to serve as the Winds Area Specialist for RCME.

Other performance highlights have included concerts with the Gryphon Trio, pre-eminent Canadian percussionist Beverley Johnston, accordion virtuoso Joseph Macerollo, solo and chamber music for visits by world-renowned composers Kryzstof Penderecki, Chen Yi and Anders Hillborg, as well as serving as Artist-In-Residence for the Silverthorn Symphonic Winds. Peter recently performed the Canadian premiere of noted American wind ensemble composer Brian Balmages’ concerto “Escapades” with the composer conducting. Peter is an endorsing artist for D’Addario Woodwinds Canada.


Gavin Pritchard (Percussion) Spotlight Artist

A professional percussionist and educator, Gavin Pritchard regularly performs with the Orlando Philharmonic, the Florida Orchestra, at Walt Disney World in the orchestras as well as many others. As an educator he has held/holds teaching positions at Salford University in the UK, Stetson University in Florida, as well as many local schools grades 6-12.

Gavin was born in Yorkshire into a very musical environment. At the time, his father Gareth, was Principal Cornet with the Brodsworth Colliery Band and then GUS/Rigid Containers Band. As a toddler, Gavin would regularly attend rehearsals with his father often sitting under his seat listening to the band. He even learned how to follow (the percussion line at least) a score before he could read and write. It was also not unusual to find Gavin in the kitchen with pots, pans and wooden spoons playing his own “drum kit”!

At the end of 1990, the whole family moved to Norway and Gavin immediately became involved with music on a more serious level. His first band was Tomrefjord Skulekorps from the small village of Tomrefjord (2,000 inhabitants) in the North West of Norway. His father was the conductor at the time and when he was given a list of players, he noticed that there was a vacancy on percussion. Bearing in mind events with Gavin up to that point and also initially seeing it as a way to meet new friends, he suggested that Gavin take the vacant spot in the percussion group. Thus began his career as a Percussionist.

Gavin’s progress as a percussionist was quite startling and during his very successful time in Norway, he played with: Tomrefjord Skulekorps, Molde Brass Band, Molde Symphony Orchestra, Haukaas Musikklag, Radoy Brass, Sandefjord Brass Symposium, Vestfold Symphony Orchestra, Nanset Wind Band and as an invited guest player with the Royal Norwegian Navy Band.

In 1998, the family moved back to the UK where Gavin studied at the RNCM in Manchester.  After graduating, Gavin has worked as a peripatetic teacher and also as a freelance percussionist.  He started in brass bands in the UK with Leyland before moving on to YBS where he played with them for over 7 years.  After his time with YBS, Gavin played with many of the top brass bands in the UK. 

Away from bands, Gavin also regularly worked with the major Orchestras in the UK, including the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.  At the beginning of 2012 he also recorded all the percussion tracks for the music used at the Olympic Games in London. 

Since moving to Florida in 2015, Gavin has established himself as a professional freelance percussionist as well as an educator, working with many of the top ensembles as well as at numerous institutions throughout the state.

Glen Gillis (Saxophone) Spotlight Artist

Glen Gillis, Professor of Music, conducts the Concert Band and several saxophone ensembles, and teaches saxophone, conducting, and music education courses at the University of Saskatchewan.  Dr. Gillis is a Conn-Selmer Artist/Clinician and continues to maintain an active schedule in saxophone performance. He has performed at numerous international music conferences (World Saxophone Congresses and North American Saxophone Alliance Biennial and Regional Conferences) and has appeared as a guest soloist with orchestras and wind ensembles in Canada. As a member of SOCAN (Society of Composers, Authors, and Music Publishers of Canada), his diverse performance career and musical experience has spanned over three decades in the realms of classical and jazz, with many published compositions for saxophone, and band through Eighth Note Publications (distributed by Alfred Music). He released SaxSpectrum (2009) and SaxSpectrum 2 (2014) through the MSR Classics label performing and displaying many of his compositions and commissioned works, all world premiere recordings. International music magazines such as Fanfare,American Music GuideBBC Music Magazine, and Gramophone gave stellar reviews of his CDs. SaxSpectrum 2 also received a nomination for the 2015 Instrumental Recording of the Year from the Western Canadian Music Awards. He can also be heard on didgeridoo.diversions (Hoot/Wisdom Recordings 2007) and Devotion (Ice Music Press 2015). In 2012 he toured China and performed at five city/university venues that included: Beijing, Tianjin, Xi’an, Kunming, and Shanghai. In February 2013 he hosted the North American Saxophone Alliance Region 9 Conference. In 2015 he was appointed as the NASA Region 9 director to a two-year term. In the last two decades Dr. Gillis has commissioned numerous works for classical saxophone and has collaborated with many artist musicians, conductors, and composers. He has matriculated many saxophone students at the high school and college level who have received provincial and national awards. Dr. Gillis has given numerous clinics at high schools and colleges over his career and has also served as an artist-in-residence at the Banff Centre in Alberta on five occasions. As an original member of the Saskatoon Saxophone Quartet, he leads the ensemble that performs for special functions in and around Saskatoon. As an educator and scholar, he has written many articles that appear in the Canadian Music Educator and Canadian Winds on the subjects of conducting, woodwind pedagogy, and music education. He has contributed to The Encyclopaedia of Music in CanadaTeaching Music through Performance in Band (Vol. X), and Teaching Music through Performance in Middle School Band. As well, he has presented research papers or clinics at several international and national music conferences such as the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic, the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles Conference, both Regional and National College Band Directors National Conferences, the Texas Music Educators Association Convention, the Hawaii International Conference on Arts and Humanities, and the U of S Fine Arts Research Lecture Series. Dr. Gillis has remained active as a clinician and adjudicator for solo/ensemble festivals and workshops as well as guest conducting Provincial Honour Bands, the Saskatoon Youth Orchestra, and the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra. In 2001, Dr. Gillis returned to Canada after a ten-year residence in the United States, where he spent five years as Director of Bands at Cameron University in Lawton, Oklahoma. During the last three years in Oklahoma he regularly appeared as guest conductor for the Lawton Philharmonic Orchestra for both the Master and Chamber Concert Series. As director of the U of S Wind Orchestra from 2001-10, the ensemble released three commercial CDs in 2005, 2007, and 2009. In 2006, the Wind Orchestra toured Texas with a clinic performance at the Texas Music Educators Association Convention in San Antonio. In 2004 he created the Band Directors Professional Development and the High School Select Wind Orchestra. In 2005 he created the North Saskatchewan Wind Symphony, a community ensemble comprised of some of the finest wind and percussion players from Saskatoon and the surrounding area. Dr. Gillis’ professional affiliations include WASBE, CBDNA, SBA/CBA, SMEA/CMEA, NAfME (MENC), SOCAN, NASA, Kappa Kappa Psi, Phi Mu Alpha, and Pi Kappa Lambda. He earned a Bachelor of Music in Music Education degree from the University of Saskatchewan, a Master of Music degree from Northwestern University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Missouri.


Martin Britt (Soprano Cornet) – Spotlight Artist

Martin Britt has long been regarded as one of the banding world’s finest soprano players and he enjoys performing all over the world. Martin studied Trumpet at The Royal Academy of Music with James Watson, John Wallace and David Staff before enjoying a career as a freelance trumpeter. Playing all styles, Martin’s career spanned from playing Rock music whilst touring with Roger Daltrey of THE WHO, to running his own period instrument ensemble. Martin is now a brass band player in the true sense with a day job but performing at the highest level in his free time. Martin is a regular guest soprano player with some of the world’s best brass bands and as such has won the European Championships with Cory band, three New Zealand Naationals with Woolston Brass, the All England Masters with Desford Colliery Band, the National Eisteddfod with Tredegar Town band and regularly plays with GUS and Brighouse & Rastrick bands amongst others. Martin recently joined Bayerische Brass Band Akademie (“3BA”), based in Augsburg, with whom he has performed at the European Championships and contributed to their sixth National Title in 2016.

Darrell J. Bueckert

Darrell Bueckert (Percussion) Spotlight Artist

Darrell is a graduate of the University of Manitoba (B.A.) and the University of Saskatchewan (B.Mus. Mus.Ed. and M.Ed. in instrumental music). He has performed with many professional organizations including both the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra and the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra where he is now Principal Timpanist. In this role he has played for internationally known conductors and performers, Broadway musicals and touring ballets, as well as local choirs and theatre groups. His performances with other ensembles have taken him to Europe, the USA, and many parts of Canada including a series of performances in Inuvik and Aklavik, North West Territories. In 2000 he established Seashell Sound Productions in Saskatoon, specializing in producing quality acoustic recordings. Darrell’s performances, compositions and arrangements have also been recorded by CBC radio and featured on CBC radio Saskatchewan. In addition to his private teaching studio, Darrell is also on faculty with the Department of Music at the University of Saskatchewan as Applied Percussion Instructor and Sessional Lecturer in Music Education. From 2006 to 2009 Darrell was also Adjunct Professor to the College of Graduate Studies and Research at the University of Regina.

Carolyn Rathgeber (Flute) Spotlight Artist

Carolyn Rathgeber is a flute player based in Regina, SK and Montreal, QC. She is a second year student at McGill University, Schulich School of Music, where she is studying to receive a Bachelor of Music under Joanna G’Froerer. Her greatest passion is music, having played since the age of six. She has had many opportunities to grow as an artist that she is grateful for, both at home and abroad. 

Before university studies, Carolyn participated in many ensembles including the South Saskatchewan Youth Orchestra (SSYO), where she led the flute section as associate principal for one year and then principal chair for two years, as well as the band program at Campbell Collegiate. She also completed her Grade 10 certificate from the Royal Conservatory of Music with Honours in June 2018.

She has enjoyed many exciting opportunities since beginning her degree at McGill in Fall 2019, including participating in McGill Wind Orchestra as well as small chamber ensembles and solo recitals. A highlight of her year was participating in a Baroque masterclass led by Claire Guimond. 

Carolyn has previously participated in the Band Program at International Music Camp in the International Peace Garden (2015-2017), Music Horizons, a Young Artist Program at Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York (2018). As well, she studied under Alexa Still at the Orford Musique in Orford, Quebec in August 2019. She is excited to work with Kelly Zimba, Jennifer Gunn and Alexa Still again this summer through Orford Musique.

Carolyn also participated in the Regina Music Festival every spring where she has won several awards; including the Kinsmen Scholarship Competition in 2018. She also performed in the Provincial Music Festival in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan in June 2018.

In addition to performing, she also has an interest in music pedagogy. Carolyn maintains a studio with a focus on Western Art Music in Flute and Classical Theory. She is passionate about sharing new skills with others and connecting with people through music. 

Carolyn enjoys cross country skiing, traveling with her family and being active outside in nature in her free time. She is generously supported by the Saskatchewan Arts Board through the Prince Edward Arts Scholarship program.

Headshot of Penn State Professor of Tuba and Euphonium Velvet Brown

Velvet Brown – Panel Session Guest

Velvet Brown is professor of tuba and euphonium at Penn State. Prior to joining the faculty in 2003, she taught at Bowling Green State University (Ohio) and Ball State University (Indiana), and served as an associate director of University Bands at Boston University.

She enjoys a professional career as an international soloist, chamber ensemble performer, recording artist, conductor, and orchestral player. She has made regular appearances throughout Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Finland, France, England, Hungary, Slovenia, Russia, Japan, Canada, and the United States. Many of her successful students have won prestigious playing and teaching positions and are prize winners at various regional, national, and international competitions.

Brown is currently the principal tubist of the New Hampshire Music Festival Orchestra and the Altoona Symphony Orchestra. She has served as principal tuba with the River City Brass band, guest principal with the Lahti Philharmonic in Finland, and as substitute or additional tubist with the Detroit Symphony, Saint Louis Symphony, San Francisco Women’s Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Fort Wayne Philharmonic. In 2004, Brown joined Howard Johnson’s “Gravity” Tuba Jazz Ensemble as lead tuba. She has also garnered high praise as a founding and current member of Stiletto Brass Quintet, Monarch Brass Quintet and Brass Ensemble, the Junction Tuba Quartet, and the Pennsylvania Brassworks. Moreover, she is also a founding board member of the International Women’s Brass Conference.

She has released four solo CDs, and has collaborated on several other recordings as a soloist and ensemble member, including the April 2013 release of Stiletto Brass Quintet with Doc Severinsen. Also notable is her interpretation of John Williams’ Tuba Concerto on Albany Records. Brown is a Besson/Buffet/Melton/Meinl Weston Performing Artist, performing on the MW 2250 and 2182 F tubas, and the MW 2000 C tuba. She is also a performing artist for Denis Wick mouthpieces and mutes.

Gillian  MacKay

Gillian MacKay – Panel Discussion Guest

Gillian MacKay is Professor of Music of the University of Toronto, where she conducts the Wind Ensemble and teaches conducting. Gillian has an active professional career as a conductor, adjudicator, clinician and trumpeter. She has conducted honour ensembles throughout Canada and the United States, and is Associate Conductor of the Denis Wick Canadian Wind Orchestra. Dr. MacKay has adjudicated Canadian band festivals at local, provincial, and national levels in Canada. She has conducted honour bands and judged competitions in the US, Singapore, Thailand, and Korea.

Dr. MacKay enjoys presenting clinics and workshops at provincial and state conferences in Canada and the United States, and is known for her work on the relationship between conducting and mime. Currently, she is investigating the application of the Michael Chekhov acting technique to movement and meaning in conducting. Recognized as a conducting pedagogue, Gillian leads the University of Toronto Wind Conducting Symposium each July, and has been the guest instructor at other symposia in Canada and the United States.

Gillian holds degrees and diplomas from the University of Lethbridge, McGill University, the University of Calgary, and Northwestern University.

Lucy Pankhurst (thanks to Steve Hocking)

Lucy Pankhurst – Panel Session Guest

Lucy Pankhurst is a composer based in the northwest of England. She is a performance (tenor horn, 2004) and composition (2007) graduate of the RNCM, where she was also awarded a PhD in 2020 for her work focussing on contemporary applications of the traditional brass band.

As a composer, Lucy has received many accolades for her work, most notably in 2011 when she became the first female composer to be presented with a British Composer Award in the Brass/Wind Band category. In Pitch Black was also the first brass band work to win a BCA. Her work has subsequently been shortlisted for the awards on four more occasions. Lucy has also been a member of the judging panel for the British Composer Awards/Novellos and adjudicated the 2019 EBBC Composers Competition alongside Dr John Pickard and Oliver Waespi.

Large-scale composition projects include commissions for the Durham International Brass Festival (Pathways – 2015), a multiple ensemble ACE-funded mixed media project at the Woodhorn Museum in Northumberland and the Sage, Gateshead (Reflection Connection – 2016), a residency at the IWBC in Philadelphia (2017), a PRSF-funded experimental brass band work (Th’owfen Raconteurs – 2013) and a vocal/electroacoustic installation at Salisbury Cathedral to commemorate the Christmas Truce of 1914 at the Ageas International Salisbury Arts Festival (Voices from No Man’s Land – 2014). Please see the PROJECTS tab for more info.

In 2018, Lucy was commissioned by BBC Radio 3 to create a vocal work celebrating 100 years of suffrage, with text developed with Emmeline Pankhurst’s great-granddaughter, Dr Helen Pankhurst. The Pankhurst Anthem was recorded by the BBC Singers and premiered at the 2018 BBC Free Thinking Festival at the Sage, Gateshead.

Lucy has a particular interest in projects which involve research and collaboration. She has composed a number of site/performer-specific works and also has a growing collection of pieces that respond to specific artistic stimuli. For example; Sekhemti (solo trumpet – Head and Arm from monumental red granite statue of Amenhotep III) and Cristallum Calvariam (violin/voice – Rock Crystal Skull) were performed at the British Museum next to their respective artefacts as part of the 2013 RNCM Sound Histories event. Examples for large ensemble are Marilyn (brass band) is a musical reflection on Andy Warhol’s screenprints of Marilyn Monroe (commissioned for the 2014 Brass in Concert Festival at the Sage) and Ticket: 250654 (wind orchestra) based on the ticket number assigned to the musicians aboard the Titanic.

As a music educator and animateur, Lucy has composed many pieces for youth ensembles – from string orchestras, to massed ‘flexible’ ensembles. Over the last 10 years, Lucy has also developed and delivered a whole-class programme of music for KS2 beginner brass, which has led to her current work in producing Puzzle Pieces – an extensive flexible music programme for all instruments (from first access to advanced players), as part of an Erasmus+ international project. In addition to her work in schools, she has also lectured at Huddersfield University and been a guest speaker at the University of Salford, the University of Leicester and Bath Spa University.

Raquel Samayoa

Raquel Rodriquez Samayoa – Panel discussion guest

Raquel Rodriquez Samayoa leads a dynamic and engaging career as a teacher, chamber musician, recitalist, adjudicator and solo performer. She currently serves as assistant professor of trumpet, and co-conductor of the Brass Band at the University of North Texas College of Music, where she has taught since 2018. She was previously on faculty at Tennessee Tech University and Northern Kentucky University.

Her performances have taken her to leading venues in the United States, Russia, Finland, Australia, China, Mexico, and the United Kingdom. As a member of the award-winning Seraph Brass, she frequently tours the United States and abroad performing concerts and engaging in educational outreach performances. Dr. Samayoa is a clinician for the Conn-Selmer and Denis Wick Companies.

Raquel serves on the International Trumpet Guild (ITG) Board of Directors and is the co-editor of the International Women’s Brass Conference (IWBC) newsletter. She frequently serves as an adjudicator for the National Trumpet Competition and ITG Conference. Dr. Samayoa will serve as a co-host for the 2021 International Women’s Brass Conference. Raquel’s scholarly activities have resulted in articles published in The Instrumentalist and International Trumpet Guild Journal. She recently presented sessions at the College Music Society Southern Conference, Midwest Clinic, Historic Brass Society Symposium, and International Trumpet Guild Conference. Dr. Samayoa published Dueling Fundamentals for Two Trumpets with Mountain Peak Music in the Spring of 2020.

Dr. Samayoa has been invited as a guest artist and clinician at several universities and conferences across the country. Raquel was recently a guest artist at the Brass Day of the Moscow Conservatory (RUS), Brass Day of the Melbourne Conservatorium (AU), South Texas Brass Symposium, Dallas Trumpet Workshop, and will be a guest artist at the 2020 Interlochen Trumpet Institute. Raquel will make her Carnegie Hall debut as a soloist with the Fillmore Wind Band in 2021.

In 2013, Raquel recorded Cincinnati Virtuosity – The Cornet Solos of Frank Simon and Herman Bellstedt which is available on Amazon and iTunes. Raquel will release her second album, Trumpet Songs, in the Fall of 2020, which will feature works for trumpet by all female composers.

Dr. Samayoa holds the DMA in trumpet performance from the University of North Texas where she studied with renowned trumpet pedagogue, Keith Johnson. She earned the MA and bachelor’s degree in music education from West Texas A&M University where she studied trumpet with Mr. David Ritter and wind conducting with Dr. Gary Garner.

Raquel lives in Denton and is happily married with one daughter, Alex;  a rambunctious dog, Mimi;  and a grumpy but loveable cat, Lulu.