Wind Ensemble and Symphonic Band

Monday, April 28, 2014 - 7:30pm
$15 ($10 students/seniors). Notecard.
Wind Ensemble and Symphonic Band

The UW Wind Ensemble performs “Road Stories,” by Jennifer Higdon; “Four Maryland Songs,” by Jack Stamp (with faculty artist Kari Ragan, soprano);  “The Bold Benjamin,” by David Stanhope (with Adrian Packel and members of the Men's Glee Club and UW Chorale); and "Prelude, Fugue and Riffs," by Leonard Bernstein (with faculty artist Jennifer Nelson, clarinet).  The UW Symphonic Band performs "Bali,"  by Michael Colgrass; "Aspen Jubilee," by Ron Nelson; and "Gone," by  Scott McAllister.

 

 

Program Detail

Wind Ensemble
Tim Salzman and Jiannan Cheng, conductors

Road Stories (2011) – Jennifer Higdon (b. 1962)

I. Speed Bike

II. Winding Tree Lane

III. Rail Lights

 

Four Maryland Songs (1995) – Jack Stamp (b. 1954)

1. At the Edge of the Choptank River

2. A Maryland Road

3. On Chesapeake Shores: Fisherman’s Sonnet

4. The Sires of Seventy-Six: Remembering our Independence

Kari Ragan, soprano

 

The Bold Benjamin: A Sea Chantey (1996) – David Stanhope (b. 1952)

Adrian Packel, baritone; UW Men’s Glee Club/UW Chorale

 

Prelude, Fugue and Riffs (1949) – Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990)

Jennifer Nelson, clarinet

 
 

Symphonic Band

Steven Morrison and Cory Meals, conductors

Spoon River (1929) – Percy Grainger (1882-1961)/arr. G. C. Bainum

 Instinctive Travels (2009) – Michael Markowski (b. 1986)

Cory Meals, conductor

 Bali (2005) – Michael Colgrass (b. 1932)

 Noisy Wheels of Joy (2001) – Eric Whitacre (b. 1970)

Cory Meals, conductor

 


PROGRAM NOTES

 

Jennifer Higdon has been hailed by the Washington Post as a “savvy, sensitive composer with a keen ear, an innate sense of form, and a generous dash of pure spirit.” One of the most performed living American composers, among her impressive list of commissioners include The Cleveland Orchestra, The Philadelphia Orchestra, eighth blackbird, the Tokyo String Quartet, and The United States Marine Band. Higdon received the 2010 Pulitzer Prize in Music for her Violin Concerto, and the Pulitzercommittee’s citation referred to the work as a “deeply engaging piece that combines flowing lyricism with dazzling virtuosity.” She has also received a surfeit of prestigious awards from a wide array of agencies including the Guggenheim Foundation, ASCAP, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Academy of Arts and Letters, Meet the Composer, and the Pew Fellowship in the Arts. Her Percussion Concerto received the 2010 Grammy Award for ‘Best Contemporary Classical Composition’. The National Wind Ensemble Consortium Group comprised of more than 30 institutions, commissioned Road Stories in 2011. The composer was undoubtedly inspired by her lifestyle of travel: however, she wrote the piece, a description of life’s journeys, at home between trips, commenting thusly:

 

Road Stories is aseries of portraitsof life journeys.In “Speed Bike”, the listener moves along in a joyful ride over sudden liftinghillsandalongpathsthatarecomprisedofquicktwistsandturns;thereisarelishingoffreedom and the speed of youth. “Winding TreeLane”movesatamuchslowerpace…aquietstreetofleafysunlit patterns,absorbedbythetravelerinslowfootfalls;thisistimemovementincontemplative moments.“RailLights”isthevisualphenomenaofbeingonatrain,lookingthroughwindowsatfastpassinglights.Nopictureisclear,butsometimesaspace willgoby,wherethepassengercanseealargerpicturethanthemomentaryshifts oflightslivers.The travelingthatwealldowhilemovingfromonedaytothenextoftenshowsusonlypassingglimmers,buttherearethosemomentswhenaclearpictureshiftsintothefocusofalargerworld.

 

The University of Maryland chapters of Kappa Kappa Psi and Tau Beta Sigma (the honorary band service fraternity and sorority) commissioned Four Maryland Songs. The commission was to honor Director of Bands, John Wakefield's thirty years on the College Park campus. After discussions with Professor Wakefield, I decided to write a work based on poetry about Maryland and feature a soprano soloist with wind ensemble. The poetry, a majority of which was found in the collection Maryland in Prose and Poetry, is diverse as is the music that accompanies it. At the Edge of the Choptank River, by J.P. Gelletly, is very rhythmic to accentuate the consistent, pounding shore. However, Gelletly brings religious symbolism into the text and the music adjusts accordingly. A Maryland Road, by W.C. Thurston, is somewhat pastoral, and is reminiscent of the music of Aaron Copland or, at least, has a distinct "American" flavor. On Chesapeake Shores: A Fisherman's Sonnet, by Albert Dawling, is a humorous look at the "after-life" with or without fishing. The music is rhythmic, earthy, polytonal, and folk-like. There is a brief "tongue-in-cheek" quote of the state song in the translation. The Sires of Seventy-Six, by John N. McJuton, is the most serious of the four movements.  The text deals with our forefathers and their strife for independence.  Between verses there is a serious quote of "Maryland, My Maryland" (which I learned as a fourth grader and can still remember the words).

- Jack Stamp

 

David Stanhope is one of Australia's leading conductors and a brilliant pianist. After his conducting debut at the Sydney Opera House, the chief music critic of the national newspaper, 'The Australian' described him as "a new highly talented and very lively young conductor - more please". He has worked for The Australian Opera for several years, and has wide experience as a repetiteur. In addition to conducting major productions at the Sydney Opera House, he is guest conductor with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and a regular guest conductor of other groups in various parts of Australia. As a concert pianist, he has performed concertos with all major Australian symphony orchestras, including the Rachmaninoff 3rd Concerto in D minor. He has made a number of recordings with EMI, and undertook a concerto tour for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Tall Poppies Records released his CD, Virtuoso Transcriptions, in 1996 and "David Stanhope plays" in 1999. His early musical experience was as a hornist; he held the position of principal horn, The Australian Opera and principal horn, Australian Chamber Orchestra; he was also a free-lance player in London, playing with the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, the English National Opera, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the London Sinfonietta. In 1984 he changed instruments to bass trombone, free-lancing with the Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide Symphony Orchestras.

 

After joining the music staff of the Australian Opera in 1986, Stanhope conducted seasons of Albert Herring, Turn of the Screw, and Les Pcheurs de Perles. He is now developing a career as a freelance conductor. Recent engagements with the Australian Opera and the State Opera of South Australia have included seasons of Peter Grimes, Hansel and Gretel, Salome, Lulu, Ariadne Auf Naxos, Eugene Onegin, La Traviata, Jenufa, Fidelio and The Makropoulos Secret. He is a guest conductor for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, including concerts and engagements with the Sydney, Melbourne, West Australian, Queensland, Adelaide and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras. He is also a regular guest conductor with Australia's leading contemporary group, Sydney Alpha Ensemble and The Australian Ballet. He has numerous compositions to his credit, ranging from songs and chamber music to numerous works for large orchestra and symphonic wind band. The Australian Opera gave the first performances of his 3 act opera "The Un-Dead" in November 1990. Sir Charles Mackerras has described him as “an absolutely outstanding musician”. He has written numerous compositions for all kinds of instrumental and vocal ensembles, but is especially known as a writer for wind band and brass. His most recent compositions include a three-act opera, a symphony (recorded by the West Australian Symphony Orchestra), and the suite for string orchestra, String Songs. Publishers of his works include Southern Music Company, Novello & Co., Tezak, The Hornists' Nest, Action Music and H.L. Music. Stanhope is particularly interested in the use of music in film, and has conducted the soundtracks of Babe, Children of the Revolution, Paradise Road and Passion. For the last-named film he also recorded the entire solo piano repertoire for the film and is the hand 'double' for Richard Roxburgh. In 2000 Stanhope conducted the Sydney Symphony Orchestra in several items for the opening ceremony of the Sydney Olympic Games. He also wrote fanfares and fireworks music for both the opening and closing ceremonies.

Written for solo baritone, male chorus and wind band, The Bold Benjamin is a beautifully scored work recounting the legend of an English ship, the Bold Benjamin, and the disastrous loss of life experienced by its crew after an epic battle with the Spanish Armada during one of the English/Spanish conflicts of the 16th or 17th centuries.

 

Completed in 1949 for Woody Herman’s big band as part of a series of commissioned works that already included Stravinsky’s Ebony Concerto, Prelude, Fugue and Riffs was never performed by Herman. Instead, it received its premiere as part of composer Leonard Bernstein's Omnibus television show, "The World of Jazz" on October 16, 1955, with Benny Goodman – Bernstein's Tanglewood neighbor and friend since the 1940s – as the soloist to whom the work is now dedicated.In 1952 Bernstein revised the score from its original instrumentation for a more conventional pit orchestra, and the work was then incorporated into a ballet sequence in the first draft of the musical comedy Wonderful Town, the sister piece of On the Town. The revised version of Prelude, Fugue, and Riffs did not survive and the majority of the music was cut from the final version of the Wonderful Town score with the exception of a few phrases in the musical's "Conquering the City" and "Conversation Piece". Lukas Foss later transcribed the work for clarinet and orchestra.

 

A distinctly idiosyncratic voice among twentieth century composers, Australian-born Percy Graingeris nonetheless a name synonymous with wind bands since their inception. Also an accomplished concert pianist and conductor, many of his works -- such as Country Gardens and Lincolnshire Posy -- stand as some of the most recognizable and popular in the wind genre. An advocate of evocative and direct musical texture, Grainger’s exploration of non-traditional compositional practices such as tonal freedom, “beatless music,” and electronic instruments predate their acceptance by mainstream composers of the early- to mid-twentieth century. He is also well known for his collections and settings of folk tunes from throughout the English-speaking world.

 

Among these, Spoon River is an example of Grainger’s mature output for the wind band. Ostensibly owing its title to Edgar Lee Masters’ 1914 Spoon River Anthology, the original fiddle tune at the core of the work was collected in Stark County, Illinois in 1857. Passed on to Grainger by Masters, it was originally scored for saxophone quintet. Later versions included piano, orchestra, and wind band. Cascading through the ensemble in a characteristically Grainger-like fashion, the fiddle tune pulses with rhythmic energy and relentless drive to a scintillating and brilliant finale.

 

A graduate of Arizona State University’s film school, Michael Markowskiis a largely autodidactic composer. His work Shadow Rituals was the 2006 winner of the first Frank Ticheli Composition Contest, and he has since had subsequent works performed throughout the United States and Canada. Of his 2009 work, Instinctive Travels, Markowski relates,

 

“[It is]... a seven-minute musical excursion. This brisk and busting escapade will propel an audience through defibrillating rhythms, indulgent mood swings and a kaleidoscope of instrumental colors.”

 

Michael Colgrass began his musical career in Chicago where his first professional experiences were as a jazz drummer. He graduated from the University of Illinois in 1954 with a degree in performance and composition and his studies included training with Darius Milhaud at the Aspen Festival and Lukas Foss at Tanglewood. He served two years as timpanist in the Seventh Army Symphony Orchestra in Stuttgart, Germany and then spent eleven years supporting his composing as a freelance percussionist in New York City where his wide-ranging performance venues included the New York Philharmonic, American Ballet Theater, Dizzy Gillespie, the Modern Jazz Quartet, the original West Side Story orchestra on Broadway, the Columbia Recording Orchestra’s Stravinsky Conducts Stravinsky series, and numerous ballet, opera and jazz ensembles. He organized the percussion sections for Gunther Schuller’s recordings and concerts, as well as for premieres of new works by John Cage, Elliott Carter, Edgard Varese, and many others. During this New York period he continued to study composition with Wallingford Riegger (1958) and Ben Weber (1958-60). Colgrass has received commissions from the New York Philharmonic and The Boston Symphony, as well as the orchestras of Minnesota, Detroit, San Francisco, St. Louis, Pittsburgh, Washington, Toronto, the National Arts Centre Orchestra, The Canadian Broadcast Corporation, The Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society, the Manhattan and Muir String Quartets, The Brighton Festival in England, The Fromm and Ford Foundations, The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and numerous other orchestras, chamber groups, choral groups and soloists. He won the 1978 Pulitzer Prize for Music for Déjà vu, which was commissioned and premiered by the New York Philharmonic. In addition, he received an Emmy Award in 1982 for a PBS documentary “Soundings: The Music of Michael Colgrass.” He has been awarded two Guggenheim Fellowships, A Rockefeller Grant, First Prize in the Barlow and Sudler International Wind Ensemble Competitions, and the 1988 Jules Leger Prize for Chamber Music.

 

Colgrass’ work, Bali, is the result of two summer residencies the composer spent in Ubud, a small artistic community in mountainous central Bali. Broadly programmatic in structure, the work is bookended by multi-textured dance rhythms encasing a contrasting lament, all bearing the musical essence of the Balinese Gamelan tradition. Employing non-traditional harmonies and instruments, including ceramic pots and aluminum bowls, Bali seeks to portray the spirit of the Balinese people, as experienced by Colgrass during his time there.

 

Eric Whitacreis one of the most popular and performed composers of the early twenty-first century. A graduate of the Julliard School (New York), and student of John Corigliano, his choral and wind works have been recorded to great acclaim. A TED presenter and creator of the YouTube sensation that is the Virtual Choir, Whitacre has addressed the United Nations Leaders programme and the Ciudad de las Ideas “Brilliant Minds” conference. Currently he serves as the Composer in Residence at Cambridge University (Sidney Sussex College, UK).

 

Regarding his work, Noisy Wheels of Joy, he relates,

 

“In 1999 I attended the ASCAP Film Scoring Workshop. It was an incredible experience, three weeks of seminars with film music agents, music contractors, and composers. At the end of the three week session a hat was passed around the room, and each of the ten student composers pulled a piece of paper from it. On each piece of paper was the name of a different movie, all movies that were in theaters at that time. I received the Glenn Close live-action version of 101 Dalmatians.

 

We were each given a 3-4 minute scene from the film we had pulled from the hat, and were told that we had three days to score it for a 40 piece orchestra. On top of that, we would conduct our score “to picture” and would record with an A-list ensemble on the legendary Newman sound stage at Sony.

After the workshop, I transcribed the cue for wind ensemble and called it Noisy Wheels of Joy, which is a line from the E.E. Cummings poem“i walked the boulevard.” For the record, I nearly called it There’s Magic Everywhere, a tribute to the last line that Calvin says to Hobbes in their last comic strip; but my friend and fellow Juilliard composer Jonathan Newman convinced me to go with the Cummings.”

Artist Bios
Kari Ragan, soprano
Soprano Kari Ragan holds degrees from Indiana University (BM, MM) and the University of Washington (DMA). Her dissertation, “The Ballad of Baby Doe: Historical Accuracy and Gender Ideology in the Characterization of August and Baby Doe,” focused on feminist perspective of Douglas Moore’s 1956 opera.

In 2012, Dr. Ragan was the recipient of the Van L. Lawrence Fellowship, a prestigious award presented jointly by The Voice Foundation and the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS). Her research topic for this fellowship is “The Parameters and Utility of Vocal Cool Down Exercises.” In 2011, she earned the Wicklund Singing Voice Specialist Certificate and in 2010 the New York Singing Teachers (NYSTA) Association’s Distinguished Voice Professional Certificate. Dr. Ragan was selected to present at the 51st NATS National Conference on Voice Disorders and the Multidisciplinary Team. In 2009, she was the recipient of the NATS Pedagogy Award. Dr. Ragan’s article “Intubation Considerations for Singers” was published in the NYSTA’s VOICEPrints in 2010 and the augmented article co-written with anesthesiologist Dr. Kunal Gangopadhyay, will be published in the Journal of Singing in the fall of 2012. Additionally, her article entitled “The Connected Voice Studio” was published in the Journal of Singing in September 2010.

Dr. Ragan joined the University of Washington voice faculty in the fall of 2010 where she teaches graduates and undergraduates applied voice, vocal pedagogy, Italian diction, and French art song literature. Additionally, she has developed and maintained a thriving and collaborative independent voice studio for over twenty-five years.

Although her primary training, performing, and teaching is in the classical genre, she has also specialized in Contemporary Musical Theater (CMT) pedagogy and as a Singing Voice Specialist (SVS)—a voice teacher with specialized training in helping the injured voice. Her work in this area is in association with a team including Laryngologists and Speech Language Pathologists (SLP). As a result of her three specialties (classical pedagogy, CMT pedagogy and an SVS) she is frequently sought after as a clinician and adjudicator for workshops and masterclasses throughout the Pacific Northwest. Dr. Ragan is a member of NYSTA, an organizing member of the Northwest Chapter of the Voice Foundation (NWCVF), has served on the board of the Puget Sound Chapter of NATS, and is a member of Northwest Artists.

As an active performer she has sung with such companies as Seattle Opera, Spokane Opera, Fort Collins Symphony, Helena Symphony, Washington East Opera, Spokane Symphony, Lyric Opera Northwest, and Opera Idaho, among others. In addition, she is a frequent recitalist, having recently presented a series of recitals, throughout the Northwest, with Maestro Dean Williamson at the piano. She has been recognized as the Regional finalist for the Metropolitan National Council Competition and the MacCallister Competition.

 

Jennifer Nelson, clarinet
Jennifer Nelson joined the School of Music faculty as a clarinet instructor in Fall 2009. She is currently principal clarinet with the Pacific Northwest Ballet and Auburn Symphony orchestras. She also has an active freelance career, playing shows at the Fifth Avenue and Paramount Theaters, performing as an occasional extra with the Seattle Symphony, Seattle Opera and Northwest Chamber Orchestra, and recording for various television and motion picture scores.

Nelson has also traveled throughout the United States with the national touring companies of Phantom of the Opera and the New York City Opera. Her orchestral and recital performances have taken her to Mexico, Japan, Germany, Liechtenstein, Austria, Honduras, and most recently India.

 

Adrian Packel, a second-year Ph.D. student in classics, performs regularly with several groups on campus. Originally from Lake Forest, IL, he studied ancient Greek and computer science at Swarthmore College, where he sang the role of Papageno in a production of Die Zauberflöte.  Before moving to Seattle he lived in Boston for several years, performing such roles as Ping (Turandot), Dick Deadeye (HMS Pinafore), and Seneca (L'incoronazione di Poppea). At UW, he most recently appeared with conductor Jiannan Cheng in selections from Lucia di Lammermoor (as Enrico) and La Boheme (as Marcello). He has also been seen with the University of Washington Orpheus Ensemble in several of their outreach performances, and in scenes with Opera Workshop, most recently as Hans Sachs (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg) and the title character in Rigoletto, and as Falke in their Fall 2012 production of Die Fledermaus.

 

The University of Washington Men’s Glee Club, (Dr. Steven Demorest, conductor), is a non-audition, all male choir that sings a varied repertoire of classical, doo-wop, barbershop, and traditional collegiate glee club literature. They usually perform one large concert each quarter as well as perform at sporting events and other campus and community activities. They are joined in this performance by the men from The University of Washington Chorale (Dr. Giselle Wyers, conductor). The UW Chorale is an auditioned advanced undergraduate ensemble of music and non-music majors from the Seattle campus. UW Chorale has appeared as guest ensemble with the Seattle Symphony, in joint concerts with Revalia Male Chamber Choir in Estonia, and for the Princess of Sweden. UW Chorale appeared at the Latvian Song Festival in Riga, during the summer of 2013 as one of the only American choirs. Their first solo CD, Climb, is now available for purchase at iTunes, CD Baby or from Dr. Wyers.

 

CONDUCTOR BIOS

Tim Salzman, conductor

Timothy Salzman serves as Professor of Music/Director of Concert Bands, is conductor of the University Wind Ensemble and teaches students enrolled in the graduate instrumental conducting program at the School of Music.

Prior to his appointment at the UW he served for four years as Director of Bands at Montana State University where he founded the MSU Wind Ensemble. From 1978 to 1983 he was band director in the Herscher, Illinois, public school system where the band program received several regional and national awards in solo/ensemble, concert and marching band competition.

Professor Salzman holds degrees from Wheaton (IL) College (Bachelor of Music Education), and Northern Illinois University (Master of Music in low brass performance), and studied privately with Arnold Jacobs, former tubist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

Salzman has authored numerous publications for bands with the C. L. Barnhouse, Arranger's Publications, Columbia Pictures, Hal Leonard Publishing and Nihon Pals publishing companies, and has served on the staff of new music reviews for The Instrumentalist magazine.

Professor Salzman is a national artist/clinician for the Yamaha Corporation of America and has been a conductor, adjudicator or arranger for bands throughout the United States and in Canada, England, South Korea, Indonesia, Thailand, Russia, Singapore, China, and Japan, a country he has visited twenty-one times.

During his 2011 spring term sabbatical leave he returned for a third time to Beijing where he was in residence at the Beijing Conservatory, conducting and giving master classes for numerous bands including a concert appearance at the National Center for the Performing Arts in Tianenmen Square with the Beijing Wind Orchestra, the first professional wind ensemble in Beijing. He also adjudicated the Singapore Youth Festival National Concert Band Championships. Upon his return to the United States he conducted the UCLA Wind Ensemble in their final concert of their academic year.

Professor Salzman is compiling editor and co-author (with several current and former UW graduate students) of A Composer's Insight: Thoughts, Analysis and Commentary on Contemporary Masterpieces for Wind Band, a five-volume series of books on contemporary wind band composers published by Meredith Music Publications, a subsidiary of the Hal Leonard Corporation.

He is an elected member of the American Bandmasters Association and is a past president of the Northwest Division of the College Band Directors National Association.


Steven Morrison, Symphonic Band

Dr. Steven Morrison is Professor and Chair of Music Education at the University of Washington. An instrumental music specialist, Professor Morrison teaches courses in music education, music psychology, and research methodology and conducts the UW Symphonic Band. He has taught at the elementary, junior high, and senior high levels in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Louisiana and has conducted and arranged for bands, orchestras, and chamber groups throughout the United States.

Dr. Morrison is co-director of the Laboratory for Music Cognition, Culture and Learning, investigating neurological responses to music listening, perceptual and performance aspects of pitch-matching and intonation, and use of expressive gesture and modeling in ensemble teaching. His research also includes music preference and the variability of musical responses across diverse cultural contexts.

Prior to joining the UW faculty, Morrison served as Lecturer of Fine Arts at the Hong Kong Institute of Education. He has spoken and presented research throughout the United States, as well as in Australia, China, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Japan, Jordan, Korea, Italy, the Netherlands, Thailand, and the United Kingdom. During 2009 he served as a Visiting Fellow at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities and as a Visiting Scholar in the Center for Music and Science at the University of Cambridge.

Morrison’s articles have appeared in numerous academic journals including Music Educators Journal, Journal of Research in Music Education, Bulletin for the Council of Research in Music Education, Music Perception, Update: Applications of Research in Music Education, Missouri Journal of Research in Music Education, Southwestern Musician, Recorder: Ontario Music Educators Association Journal, College Music Society Newsletter, and Southern Folklore.

He is also a contributing author to The Science and Psychology of Music Performance, published by Oxford University Press, the forthcomingOxford Handbook of Music Education, and the text Musician and Teacher: An Orientation to Music Education, authored by UW colleague Patricia Shehan Campbell and published by W.W. Norton.

Morrison is the Associate Editor and Editor Elect of the Journal of Research in Music Education for which he also served on the editorial board. He is also on the editorial boards of Reviews of Research in Human Learning and Music and the Asia-Pacific Journal for Arts Education. Morrison has served on the executive board of the Society for Research in Music Education and is currently a member of the advisory board for the Asia-Pacific Symposium on Music Education Research. He is past University Curriculum Chair for the Washington Music Educators Association and an honorary member of the Gamma chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi.

He holds a B.M. from Northwestern University, an M.M. from the University of Wisconsin, and a Ph.D. from Louisiana State University.


Jiannan Cheng, Wind Ensemble

Jiannan Cheng is from Chengdu, China and is in her first year at the University of Washington School of Music where she is enrolled in the MM program in instrumental conducting. She just received her Bachelor’s degree in choral conducting from the China Conservatory of Music (Beijing) in July of 2012.

During her undergraduate study, Jiannan studied choral conducting with Prof. Lingfen Wu and instrumental conducting with Dr. Youqing Yang. She also served as conductor of the College of Computer and Information Choir at Renming University of China, Beijing; the No. 5 Middle and High School Choir; and the Beijing Children’s Palace Choir. Additionally, she founded the College of Civil Engineering Choir at Tsinghua University in May of 2010. Jiannan started her musical training when she was quite young and, in addition to singing, plays piano, violin and flute.


Cory Meals, Symphonic Band

Cory Meals is currently working toward his PhD in Music Education at the University of Washington and serves as a Graduate Assistant Director for the Husky Marching Band and the UW Symphonic Band.

Previously, he served as Director of Bands for Waller High School (2006-2010), northwest of Houston, TX. During his tenure there ensembles received numerous ‘Superior’ ratings and UIL "Sweepstakes" awards, and advanced each year eligible to the prestigious UIL 4A Texas State Marching Contest (2007, 2009).

He has also held instructional positions in Klein ISD (TX), and Keller ISD (TX), and holds a Bachelor's Degree in Instrumental Music Education from VanderCook College of Music (IL) where he studied under Dr. Charles Menghini. Most recently he was Graduate Teaching Assistant for the University of Houston Band program, earning a Master of Music degree in Instrumental Wind Conducting with Prof. David Bertman and Mr. Eddie Green. He is an active member of CBDNA, TMEA, TBA, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, Kappa Kappa Psi, and maintains an active schedule as a visual designer, program consultant, and ensemble clinician.