Robert Ponto - 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 has contributed 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 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.
Patrick Vandehey - George Fox University Patrick Vandehey is an Associate Professor of Music at Portland State University. Prior to taking the position at PSU he taught 14 years at George Fox University and 23 years in the Beaverton School District, 14 years at Aloha High School and 9 years at Westview High School. Mr. Vandehey received his Bachelors of Art and Bachelors of Music from the University of Washington, and a Masters of Teaching Music at Portland State University.
Mr. Vandehey is a Past-President of the Oregon Band Directors Association and serves on the Adjudication Training Board of OBDA. He served for two years as the Band Liaison to the Oregon Schools Activity Association. He has served twice on the Oregon Music Education Association’s Board as Band Chair served on the OMEA Executive board as President in 2005-2006.
In 1993 Mr. Vandehey was the State, Regional and National recipient of the ASBDA- Stanbury Award for Outstanding Young Band Director. In 2000 he was inducted into the Band World Legion of Honor by the John Philip Sousa Foundation. Also in 2000 he was named one of Oregon’s top ten Music Educators by the Oregon Music Educators Association in the Teaching Music Magazine. In 2002 Mr. Vandehey received the Citation of Excellence from the National Band Association. He is a founding member of the Oregon Chapter of Phi Beta Mu, and in 2006 was inducted into the Northwest Bandmaster’s Association. Mr. Vandehey was named the Oregon’s Outstanding Music Educator in 2010 by OMEA.
Mr. Vandehey began his career at Aloha High School and from 1980 to 1994 built an award winning program in concert, jazz and marching band. Aloha High School placed in the top three at the Oregon State Band Championships from 1990 to 1994 placing 1st in 1992. He moved to Westview High School when it opened in 1994. Since Westview’s opening, all aspects of the band program have excelled. The Westview Symphonic Band qualified for the State Band Championships each year of its existence and placed in the top three in the last six years of Mr. Vandehey’s tenure there, winning in 2000, 2001 and 2002.
The Band program at George Fox University grew significantly under Mr. Vandehey’s direction. In 2007 and 2009 George Fox was selected to perform at the MENC Northwest Convention. In 2008 and 2016 the George Fox Symphonic Band was the featured ensemble at the Oregon Music Educators Association conference. In 2010 the Symphonic Band was invited to perform at the Western International Band Clinic in Seattle, Washington.
Mr. Vandehey was the coordinator of Music Education at George Fox. Through the development of a comprehensive Music Education program the number of music education majors has grew from five in 2003 to 30 in 2010. Because of his work with the Music Education Curriculum, Mr. Vandehey was invited to be a presenter at the Society of Music Teacher Education at North Carolina University in 2007.
Mr. Vandehey is married to Kristin, his wife of 40 years and has two daughters, both of whom are educators.
Craig Kirchhoff - University of Minnesota Craig Kirchhoff is Professor of Conducting and Director Emeritus of University Bands at the University of Minnesota where he conducted the University Wind Ensemble and guest conducted in the University Opera Program. Professor Kirchhoff coordinated the graduate program in Wind Ensemble/Band Conducting and guided all aspects of the University of Minnesota wind band program since 1993. Born and educated in Wisconsin, Mr. Kirchhoff brings to his position a wide knowledge of both traditional and contemporary literature. He has won critical acclaim from composers Dominick Argento, Warren Benson, William Bolcom, Henry Brant, Susan Botti. Elliott Carter, Michael Colgrass, John Corigliano, Michael Daugherty, Karel Husa, Libby Larsen, George Perle, Vincent Persichetti, Carter Pann, Stephen Paulus, Kevin Puts, Einojuhani Rautavaara, Gunther Schuller, Joseph Schwantner, James Stephenson, Steven Stucky, Elliott Schwartz, Frank Ticheli, Dana Wilson, Chen Yi, and others.
Prior to his appointment to the faculty of the University of Minnesota, Professor Kirchhoff served in a similar capacity as Director of Bands at The Ohio State University for fourteen years, as Director of Bands at Washington State University for two years, and Associate Director of Bands at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee for one year. Mr. Kirchhoff was the recipient of The Ohio State University Alumni Distinguished Teaching Award and The Ohio State University School of Music Distinguished Teaching Award. Professor Kirchhoff serves as an advisor to the BandQuest Series published by the American Composers Forum, he joined James Galway, Eddie Daniels, Donald Hunsberger, Wynton Marsalis, and Dawn Upshaw on the Advisory Board for SmartMusic produced by the MakeMusic Corporation, and he serves as the Artistic Advisor for the Windependence Wind Band Series published by Boosey & Hawkes.
Professor Kirchhoff is past president of the College Band Directors National Association and is a member of the American Bandmasters Association, the National Band Association, the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles, the Music Educators National Conference, and served as the founding editor and principal advisor of the College Band Directors National Association Journal. Professor Kirchhoff has appeared as guest conductor, clinician, and lecturer throughout the United States, Australia, Canada, China, Japan, Taiwan, Europe, and Scandinavia. He enjoyed a long association with the Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra during Frederick Fennell’s tenure as Music Director and he has recorded with them on the Kosei Publishing label. Professor Kirchhoff serves as a Yamaha Master Educator.
Rodney Dorsey - University of Oregon Dr. Rodney Dorsey comes to SOMD from a position as the associate director of bands at the University of Michigan where he conducted the Concert Band, taught undergraduate conducting, and conducted the Michigan Youth Band. Dorsey will be taking on the director of bands, conducting, and conductor of the UO Wind Ensemble starting Fall of 2013.
Prior to this appointment at UM, Dorsey served on the faculties of DePaul and Northwestern Universities. Dorsey studied conducting with Dr. James Croft, Mr. John P. Paynter, and Dr. Mallory Thompson. He was a clarinet student of Mr. Fred Ormand and Dr. Frank Kowalsky. He gained extensive experience teaching in the public schools of Florida and Georgia.
Ensembles under Dorsey's direction have performed at several state and national events including the Bands of America National Concert Band Festival. He is active as a guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator in the United States.
Recent presentations include sessions at the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association Intercollegiate Band (guest conductor), Georgia Music Educators District Band Festival (adjudicator), and Kentucky Music Educators Association State In-Service Conference (presenter). Dorsey holds a number of professional memberships that include the College Band Directors National Association, Music Educators National Conference, Illinois Music Educators Association, Kappa Kappa Psi, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Incorporated. Dorsey is also a member of the Midwest Clinic Board of Directors.