Dr. Robert Taylor - University of British Columbia
Robert Taylor is Professor of Music and Director of Bands at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, where he conducts the Symphonic Wind Ensemble, teaches graduate and undergraduate conducting, and serves as Chair of the Woodwind Brass and Percussion Division. With a career in music education spanning over twenty-five years, previous appointments include the University of Puget Sound in the state of Washington and Eureka High School in northern California, where ensembles under his direction earned recognition by Downbeat Magazine, the Selmer Corporation, and Grammy Signature Schools. Dr. Taylor maintains an active schedule as a guest conductor. Past engagements include performances with the Vancouver Brass Orchestra, Pacific Symphonic Wind Ensemble, and Chicago-based contemporary music group, the Maverick Ensemble, in addition to collaborations with a wide range of international artists—from brass virtuosi Allen Vizzutti, Gail Williams, Jeff Nelsen, and Daniel Perantoni; to composers Jodie Blackshaw, Michael Colgrass, John Corigliano, David Maslanka, Cait Nishimura, Joel Puckett, Alex Shapiro, Frank Ticheli, and Dana Wilson; to jazz and pop performers Ingrid Jensen, Manhattan Transfer, and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. As a passionate advocate of music in the schools, Dr. Taylor is in high demand as a festival adjudicator, rehearsal clinician, and guest conductor throughout North America and internationally. His frequent appearances with young musicians include serving as principal conductor of the Puget Sound Youth Wind Ensemble and guest conductor of numerous honor groups, such as the National Youth Band of Canada, California Orchestra Directors Association Honor Symphony, and many provincial and all-state bands across Canada and the United States. Taylor received the Master of Music and Doctor of Music degrees in conducting from Northwestern University, where he studied with Mallory Thompson, and the Bachelor of Arts degree in Trumpet and Music Education from Humboldt State University. His research on wind literature, rehearsal techniques, and the use of technology in the training of nascent conductors and performing musicians has been presented in leading wind band publications and featured in presentations at regional and national music conferences, including appearances at the Midwest Clinic and College Band Directors National Association. Recent research focuses on diversity, equity, and inclusion, through contemporary, socially-conscious programming and as co-author of The Horizon Leans Forward, a new resource that amplifies the talent and voices of the many underrepresented communities in the wind band field. Dr. Taylor is a Killam Laureate, Jacob K. Javits Fellow, and has served as on the executive boards of the British Columbia Music Educators Association and College Band Directors National Association (Northwest Region). He is a member of the Phi Kappa Phi and Pi Kappa Lambda National Honor Societies, World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles, and National Association for Music Education.
Dr. Gerard Morris - University of Puget Sound
Gerard Morris joined University of Puget Sound School of Music faculty in fall 2009, and currently serves as director of bands and department chair for winds and percussion. In 2016 he became an associate professor and was honored as the recipient of the President’s Excellence in Teaching Award. Morris earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in music from Western Michigan University, a Master of Music Education degree from University of Colorado at Boulder, and a Doctor of Music degree in conducting from Northwestern University. As a member of the Puget Sound faculty, he conducts the Wind Ensemble and Concert Band, and teaches courses in conducting and music education. With passion for new music, Morris has commissioned wind compositions by Michael Colgrass, Carter Pann, Joel Puckett, Jake Runestad, Daniel Kellogg, Andrew Ardizzoia, Gregory Youtz, Christopher Stark, Michael Markowski, Geoffrey Gordon, James Stephenson, Kevin Day, and Puget Sound student composers. Under his direction, the Puget Sound Wind Ensemble has been recognized for outstanding performance through its juried selection to appear at the 2016 College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA) Western/Northwestern Regional Conference, the 2014 Washington Music Educators Association (WMEA) State Conference, and the 2014 California Music Educators Association (CMEA) Bay Section Conference. Morris has led the Puget Sound Wind Ensemble to perform world premieres of Das Bach Book (Carter Pann), Glass House Concerto for Percussion and Wind Ensemble (Andrew Ardizzoia), This Life Glowed (Christopher Arrell), The House of Life and Take Time (Robert Hutchinson), Lurgy (Neil Thornock), Fireworks (Kevin Day), as well as the north American premiere of Argentinian composer Alejandro Rutty’s A Future of Tango. Morris was recently named conductor and artistic director of the esteemed Tacoma Concert Band (TCB), and his credits also include conducting appearances at The Midwest Clinic, College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA) Western/Northwestern Divisional Conference, Washington Music Educators Association (WMEA) State Conference, California Music Educators Association (CMEA) Bay Section Conference, University of Georgia JanFest, Colorado Music Festival at Chautauqua, Steamboat Strings Music in the Mountains Summer Music Festival, Heartland Marimba Festival, West Valley Winds Workshop (Canmore, Alberta), Calgary Summer Band Workshop, and as featured conductor on composer Neil Thornock’s compact disc recording Between the Lines, a project that Morris also co-produced. In addition, he has appeared as guest clinician/lecturer at CBDNA National Conference, WMEA State Conference, CMEA Bay Section Conference, University of North Carolina at Greensboro New Music Festival, Northwestern University Conducting and Wind Symposium, University of British Columbia Wind Conducting Symposium, and guest artist in residence at American Community School (Abu Dhabi/Dubai, United Arab Emirates), Iowa State University, Xavier University, California State Polytechnic University (Pomona), and St. George’s School (Vancouver, British Columbia). Morris’s conducting and teaching are informed by years of professional performing experience as principal euphonium with Boulder Brass and United States Marine Corps Band, Hawaii. With these organizations he toured the United States, Australia, and Costa Rica as both an ensemble member and soloist.
Professor Larry Gookin - Professor Emeritus, Central Washington University
Larry Gookin is Distinguished Professor and Emeritus Professor of Music at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, WA. He taught for 34 years as Director of Bands before retiring from CWU in 2015. Before coming to Central, Professor Gookin taught band in Montana and Oregon public schools for ten years. During his tenure at Central, the CWU Wind Ensemble performed by invitation at major conferences and conventions, including the College Band Directors National Association Conferences in Boulder and Seattle, the Music Educators National Conference in Minneapolis, the Western International Band Clinics in Seattle, the Western/Northwestern CBDNA Division Conferences in Reno, the Northwest Division NAFME conferences, and WMEA State Conferences. Larry Gookin has received numerous honors and awards. He has served as president of the Northwestern Division of the CBDNA, Divisional Chairman for the National Band Association, and Vice President of the Washington Music Educators Association. He is a member of the American Bandmasters Association and the WMEA Hall of Fame, and he is a past recipient of the NBA “Citation of Excellence Award,” the First Chair of America “Mac” Award, the ASBDA Stansbury Award, the WIAA/WMEA teacher of the year award, and the University of Oregon’s School of Music Distinguished Alumnus Award. Gookin was also named CWU Distinguished Professor of Teaching, and while at Central he served as Associate Chair and Coordinator of Graduate Studies. In 2016, Gookin was elected into the Northwest Bandmaster’s Association, and in 2017 he received the National Association for Music Education Distinguished Service Award. He is former principal trombone of the Eugene and Yakima Symphony Orchestras, and is Emeritus Artistic Director/Conductor of the Seattle Wind Symphony. Professor Gookin received the M.M. in Music Education from the University of Oregon School of Music in 1977 and the B.M in Music Education and Trombone Performance from the University of Montana in 1971. Professor Gookin has appeared as clinician, adjudicator, and conductor in the United States, Canada, Japan, Southeast Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. He is a Yamaha Master Educator and remains active as a conductor, clinician, and adjudicator. Gookin resides in Ellensburg, Washington, with his wife Karen, who is Emeritus Professor of English at CWU and recently retired on piccolo and flute from the Yakima Symphony Orchestra.
Robert Ponto - Professor Emeritus, University of Oregon
Robert Ponto is the Assistant Dean for Admissions at the University of Oregon School of Music and Dance. Prior to this appointment he served as Director of Bands for 20 years. He has conducted ensembles through the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. His performing ensembles have been featured at the Bang on a Can contemporary music festival in New York, on National Public Radio, Oregon Public Radio, and have appeared regularly at state, regional and national music conferences. A self-described “musical omnivore,” Ponto is an advocate for original music in all genres and is actively engaged in the creation and performance of new works. He has collaborated with many influential composers including John Adams, Steven Stucky, Michael Daugherty, Gia Kancheli, Frank Ticheli, Scott Lindroth, Augusta Read Thomas, David Crumb, and many others. He conducted the world premiere of Justine F. Chen’s Philomel with soprano Lucy Shelton and a soon-to-be-released recording of David Crumb’s Primordial Fantasy, with pianist Marcantonio Barone. As an electronic music and sound design hobbyist, Ponto hascontributed to unique projects in that genre as well. The contemporary music ensemble, Beta Collide has performed his Postmark Sirius: In Memoriam Karlheinz Stockhausen for trumpet and live electronics, Beta Bacher (for the Oregon Bach Festival’s Bach Remix V), and a digital realization of Stockhausen’s Solo. His sound design work was also used by British pop singer/songwriter Imogen Heap on her song, “Lifeline,” for the album, Sparks.
Patrick Sheridan - Freelance Conductor and Tubist Patrick Sheridan is one of the most celebrated tuba soloists in his instrument’s history. He has performed more than 3,000 concerts in over 50 countries in venues ranging from the White House to NBA half-time shows to the Hollywood Bowl.At 20 years of age, Patrick became a member of “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band. Since then, Patrick has gone on to become an incredibly diverse artist with concert performances transcending stylistic genres and building fans around the world for his instrument, the tuba. He has been featured in television and radio broadcasts on 4 continents including appearances most recently on NBC’s Today Show and NPR’s All Things Considered and Performance Today. Beyond his busy performing life, Mr. Sheridan’s commitment to education is extensive. His wind students occupy principal positions in major international ensembles including orchestras in Amsterdam, Berlin, Vienna, Rome, Paris, Madrid, Tokyo, Hong Kong, and many others. Mr. Sheridan has served on the music faculties at Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University, The Rotterdam Conservatory, The Royal Northern College of Music and The Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama. Most recently, Patrick served on the music faculty at the Univeristy of California - Los Angeles where he was the Director of the UCLA Wind Ensemble, the UCLA Brass Ensemble and taught tuba and euphonium. In the Phoenix community, Patrick is the Music Director of The Salt River Brass. Patrick also frequently works across the United States as a guest conductor with university bands and orchestras as well as high school and middle school all-state and regional honor bands and orchestras. Along with Sam Pilafian, Patrick is the co-author of the world’s best selling breathing method for instrumental improvement, The Breathing Gym which was awarded the 2009 EMMY® Award for Instructional/Informational Video Production. As a composer and arranger, Mr. Sheridan's music and arrangements have been performed internationally by symphony orchestras, concert bands, marching bands, jazz bands and drum corps. Patrick’s music, arrangements, CDs, DVDs, and books are published by Focus on Music, GIA Publications, De Haske Music, Carl Fischer, Mythen Hollanda and Dillon Music Publishing. Mr. Sheridan has over 20 years experience in the music industry as a design consultant. Instruments influenced by Patrick’s designs are played in hundreds of professional orchestras, military bands and chamber ensembles around the world. Thousands of university, high school, middle school and elementary school students play on instruments in which Patrick has been involved in the design process. He currently works as the Chief Design Consultant for XO Brass, Jupiter Band Instruments, and Hercules Stands. Patrick is a member of ASCAP, an Honorary Member of Kappa Kappa Psi, and the Founder of The Band Director Academy, a continuing education program for music educators. He holds a Master of Business Administration degree with an emphasis in finance and marketing from the University of Michigan and spends his free time with his family hiking and camping in beautiful Arizona.