Welcome to the Trombone Studio at the University of Colorado Boulder! Here you will find important information for current students as well as a place for the inquiring trombonist to find out more about us, and what it is we do.
The trombone studio at CU is an excellent group of students ranging from young freshmen through those pursuing the doctorate. We are supportive, collaborative and genuinely enjoy the shared experience of improvement as trombonists, musicians and humans.
Weekly private lessons, weekly trombone class and Trombone Ensemble provide the basis of our collective interactions. Additional enrichment comes from frequent guest recitals and master classes by some of the world’s leading trombonists: Joseph Alessi, Ian Bousfield, Craig Mulcahy and Christian Lindberg, to name a few. The sheer beauty of Boulder and the proximity of Denver with easy access to its flourishing arts scene complement a fully comprehensive College of Music within a world-class academic institution, the University of Colorado Boulder.
Hear the CU Trombone Society
William Stanley is Associate Professor of Trombone at the College of Music. Dr. Stanley performs in a wide variety of musical settings, including as a member of the Boulder Brass, the Colorado Brass Quintet, Colorado Ballet Orchestra (principal), Opera Colorado and as substitute/extra with the Colorado Symphony. He has presented master classes and clinics for many organizations and schools, including the International Trombone Association, Music Teachers National Association and the Colorado Music Educator’s Association, and hosted the 1998 International Trombone Festival at CU. Dr. Stanley has authored articles and reviews for the International Trombone Association Journal, is co-author of "Teaching Brass: A Resource Manual" (McGraw-Hill) and was a contributor to "Solos for the Student Trombonist: An Annotated Bibliography" (BIM). His teaching experience includes positions at Temple, Eastern Illinois and Millikin Universities. He holds the BME degree from the University of Kansas and MM and DMA degrees from the University of Illinois. Read Dr. Stanley's full bio.
Below are a number of resources for current students in the trombone studio:
Tom Ball - MM in trombone performance 1998 - bachelors degree from the Berklee College of Music, Doctor of Arts degree in Trombone Performance/Pedagogy with a secondary emphasis in Jazz Pedagogy from the University of Northern Colorado. Previously he was the instructor of jazz trombone at the University of Denver. Tom has a solo jazz euphonium recording - The Tom Ball Quartet Fishleather Jacket available at www.cdbaby.com/tball
Adam Bartczak - BM in trombone performance with Honors, 2001. He performed and toured with Yo, Flaco!, which was nominated for an American Music Award in 2002. Adam attended the New England Conservatory of Music in the MM/Jazz Composition degree and completed the doctorate at the University of Northern Colorado. In addition to leading his own jazz group, which has performed at the Telluride Jazz Celebration on three occasions, he was recently appointed as jazz trombone instructor at Metro State University, Denver.
Hear Adam with the Vanguard Combo:
Green/Heyman - I Cover the Waterfront
Brandon Bird - BM in trombone performance, 2016. Brandon is currently pursuing the MM degree at Northwestern University.
Karen Silbernagel Danley - MME 1998, BM Univ. of Oregon. Karen taught for many years at RiverGlen Junior High School in Boise, ID. She was chosen to represent Idaho as one of "50 Directors Who Make a Difference," awarded by School Band and Orchestra magazine in 2004. Karen and husband Greg are the proud parents of a beautiful daughter, Kalena.
Matt Dixon - BM in trombone performance 2001, completed the MM at SUNY-Purchase and received the DMA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2014. Matt is the owner and founder of MADBone (2016) which designs, manufactures and sells MADPipe - a multi-tapered trombone leadpipe/mouthpiece system (@MADBoneInc). He is currently on the faculty at Olivet Nazarene University. Matt and Zsofia have 2 children, Daniel and David.
Martin - Ballade (1941)
Megan Dudek - BM in trombone performance 2018. Megan will begin the MM degree at the Thornton School of Music, University of Southern California in fall 2018.
Jim Gray - MM in trombone performance, 1994 - bachelors degree from the University of Northern Colorado. Jim has performed with all of the major groups in Denver including interim contract player and substitute/extra with the Colorado Symphony, Colorado Ballet, the Boulder Brass, Opera Colorado, etc. He spent several years on the road with the national touring company of the Broadway musical Cats, and was the bass trombonist with the national touring company of Les Miserables, 2001 -2013.
Derek Hebert - BME with Honors 2012, MM in conducting from CSU 2017. Derek is currently the Director of Bands and Performing Arts Department Head for The Academy in Westminster, CO. In 2014, he was appointed Artistic Director of the Mile High Freedom Bands and Director of Freedom Winds.
Alex Heitlinger - BM in trombone performance with High Honors, 2002. Alex spent several years living and freelancing in the the NYC area, and completed the masters in jazz composition at the New England Conservatory. He received the DMA in Jazz Composition at University of Texas at Austin and recently accepted a position in jazz studies and composition at Utah Valley University. Among other activities, he has two recordings "Green Light" (Synergy Music SMCD80021), and "The Daily Life of Uncle Roger."
Hear Alex with his sextet:
Heitlinger - Pondering
Mason Jackson - BM in trombone performance with an emphasis in jazz studies, and BME in music education, 2016. Mason taught for one year at Western Sierra Collegiate Academy in Rocklin, CA and will be teaching at St. Paul American School in Shanghai, China beginning in 2017.
Samantha Keehn - DMA in Performance and Pedagogy, Aug. 2010 - BM from Texas Tech University, MM from Baylor University. Sam competed with the Flatirons Brass in the 2009 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, winning the Bronze Medal in the Senior Winds Division. She is currently low brass instuctor at Augustana College, Rock Island, IL. Sam's doctoral dissertation involved pedagogical techniques used in theater and how they can be applied to trombone/brass teaching. As part of that dissertation she performed the multi-media piece, Eight Poems of William Carlos Williams by David Vayo. See and hear parts of that performance:
Vayo - Eight Poems - Late for Summer Weather
Vayo - Eight Poems - The Lonely Street
Vayo - Eight Poems - The Sea-Elephant
Sean Keenan - BM in trombone performance 2009. Sean completed the MM degree at Northwestern University. He was selected as a finalist in the 2011 ITA Larry Wiehe solo competition. Sean recently won the position as principal trombone with the Sarasota Opera.
Pryor - Blue Bells of Scotland
Theo Koelsch - BA in Music, BA in Chemistry, BA in Bio-Chemistry, 2017. Theo will begin the PhD program in Chemistry with a sub-field of Chemical Biology at Yale University in fall 2017.
Reid Lasley – BM in trombone performance 2016, MM University of Illinois 2018 (studio TA). Reid will enter the DMA program at Illinois in fall 2018.
Jose Leonardo Leon – DMA 2018, MM University of Miami 2011, BM Florida International University 2008. Jose’s Pedagogy Project in the DMA is a dual-language orchestral except book for low brass instruments of major works by Latin American and Spanish composers. His final project is a recording of newer works by Latin American and American composers with whom he had direct collaboration. Hear Jose:
Rodriguez - A Short Account of a Long Journey – I. Guatire: Genesis, Roots & Tradition
Justin Loiselle- BM in trombone performance with High Honors, 2005. Justin spent a few years seeing the world performing aboard cruise ships with Princess Cruises. He now lives in Denver.
Matt Luttrell - BME in Music Education, 1998. Matt earned the MME at the University of Illinois and the DMA in Conducting at Arizona State University. He is currently Director of Bands at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas. Matt held previous faculty positions at Adams State University, University of Texas Arlington, Illinois State University and Durango (CO) High School.
Mary Mixter - BM in trombone performance and BM in composition with highest honors 2012, MM in composition Univ. of North Texas 2016. Mary is currently pursuing the DMA in composition at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
Jamey Morgan - BM in trombone performance with Honors, 2016. Jamey completed the Performers Certificate at Penn State University and is currently pursuing the MM degree at Michigan State University.
Keith Munson - BM in bass trombone performance 2005. Keith graduated from Arizona State University in the MM program where he held the graduate teaching assistantship in bass trombone. Keith received Honorable Mention in the 2006 ITA solo competition. He is currently Assistant Manager at EastWest Studios (Hollywood, CA) and works in audio engineering and production at SquirrelGear Soundworks.
John Neurohr - DMA in Performance and Pedagogy, Aug. 2009 - BME degree from the University of West Virginia, MM from the San Francisco Conservatory. John has been principal trombonist in the Cheyenne (WY) and Longmont (CO) Symphonies, and is a founding member of the Apollo Chamber Brass. He is currently associate professor of trombone at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, WA.
John's dissertation was a study of lesser-known works for trombone by Pulitzer Prize winning composers. Hear his recording of some of those pieces:
Michael Colgrass - Mystic With a Credit Card
Elliott Carter, ed. Sluchin - Gra
Matt Plummer - BM in bass trombone performance with Honors, 2001. Matt completed the MM degree at the New England Conservatory of Music and is currently working in the Organizing and Education division of the American Federation of Musicians in NYC. He has a recording with Anthony Coleman on New World Records.
Max Ripple - BM in trombone performance 2010. Max played co-principal trombone in the Denver Young Artists Orchestra and was chosen as a finalist in the Jefferson County Solo Competition. He attended the Aspen Music Festival in summer 2009. Max was admitted to the MM degree at Indiana University in fall 2011.
Johanna Rubsam - BM in trombone performance with highest honors (outstanding graduate) 2007. Winner of the Boulder Philharmonic principal trombone audition in 2005, Johanna was a scholarship student at the Aspen Music Festival and School in 2004 and 2005. Johanna was selected as one of 3 finalists in the 2006 Frank Smith ITA solo competition. In 2010 she was chosen as winner of the Lewis Van Haney orchestral excerpt competition at the International Trombone Festival in Austin, TX. She is currently living in Switzerland, with her husband Ian Bousfield (former principal trombonist of the London Symphony and the Vienna Philharmonic), son Aidan and daughter Annick. She has performed in Vienna with the Wiener Akademie and the Wiener Hofkapelleorchester made up of members of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra.
Tomasi - Concerto, I. Andante et Scherzo-Valse
Tomasi - Concerto, III. Final - Tambourin
Will Scharen - DMA in Performance and Pedagogy, Dec. 2008 - BM degree from the University of Montana, MM from the New England Conservatory. Will's doctoral dissertation included a new, critical edition of Eugen Reiche's Concerto No. 1 in B-flat. He found early sources in Russia and Germany for the trombone and piano version, edited that, and then recreated the orchestra score based on the instrumentation used in the more easily available Concerto No. 2.
Reiche - Concerto No. 1 in B-flat: I. Tempo di marcia
Reiche - Concerto No. 1 in B-flat: II. Andante
Reiche - Concerto No. 1 in B-flat: III. Tema mit variationen
Ian Shaw - BM in bass trombone performance, minor in Business Administration, 2002. Ian completed the MM degree at the San Francisco Conservatory. As a freelance musician in the San Francisco Bay Area, he has played with a diverse array of ensembles including the Vallejo, Stockton, and Modesto Symphonies, Golden Gate Men’s Chorus, Peninsula Ballet Theater, Nothingset Ensemble, and the occasional Jazz Big Band.
David Stern - BME 1993 - MM in Performance from Texas Tech University, and a Ph.D. in Fine Arts (Instrumental Conducting) from Texas Tech. David is currently Associate Professor of Music and Director of Instrumental Activities at Anderson University, Anderson, SC.
EJ Swider - MM 2011, BME Ithaca College 2009 - EJ worked from 2011 to 2013 as a classroom music teacher and brass band director at The Sultan's School in Muscat, Oman. Currently he lives in Shanghai, China where he is the Primary and Early Childhood Music Education Coordinator at the Yew Chung International School. There he performs with the New Shanghai Orchestra and the Shanghai International Choir League and Orchestra. He is planning to expand his role in international education by giving presentations about teaching abroad at US college and university music schools.
Ryan Van Gilder - DMA in Performance and Pedagogy, 2012, MM 2008, BM University of Iowa. Ryan's dissertation involved a study of vocally influenced orchestral excerpts emphasizing how the original vocal text can/should influence modern performances. He holds the position as Artist in Residence - Trombone and Assistant Director of Bands at CSU-Pueblo.
Debby Lissner Whaley - MM 2002, BM Bethel University, spent several years in the development office of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. She is now a stay-at-home mom with her beautiful daughter, Lucy Mae.
Objective: This course is designed to provide tonal/musical concepts, performance and practice techniques, and a working knowledge of the standard literature, so that you will develop musical proficiency in a variety of styles on the trombone or bass trombone.
Format: Each student will receive one private lesson per week (14 per semester). Lesson times will be arranged after registration is completed each semester. The lesson length is determined by the number of credit hours in which you are registered -
3 credit hours = 1 hr. lesson
2 credit hours = .5 hr. lesson
In addition to the weekly lesson, Studio Class meets weekly, Tuesday at 3:30, place TBA
Attendance: Attendance is required at all lessons and studio classes. Lessons not given due to my absence will be made up. Excused absences will be made up if I am given prior notification. Absences excused after the fact will be made up my schedule allows.
In the unlikely event of an unexcused absence from a lesson, the lesson will not be made up and the student will receive an F for that lesson. A second unexcused lesson will not be made up and the student will receive a grade of F for that lesson. A third (!) unexcused absence from a lesson indicates to me a complete lack of commitment and will result in a failing grade for the course. This policy applies to make-up lessons as well as regularly scheduled lessons. Certain performances will be required throughout the semester. You will be notified of these required recitals and concerts early each semester.
Grades: Final semester grades will be determined with the following percentages:
65% weekly private lessons
Each lesson will be graded and averaged to determine this portion of the grade.
20% playing exam(s)
15% attendance, studio class performance and participation, required recitals, etc.
Weekly private lessons have several purposes:
1) to provide the motivation for consistent improvement
2) to make suggestions for continued refinement
3) to guide the practice sessions
4) to monitor the student's progress over time
Assignments: will be made regularly based on my assessment of your needs. You are strongly encouraged to take responsibility for your own progress. Daily practice is expected. The amount of practice time will vary from person to person and their specific degree requirements. Suggested minimums:
BM majors – 3 hours per day, c. 20 hours per week
BME majors – 2 hours per day, c. 15 hours per week
BA majors – 1.5 hours per day, c. 10 hours per week
Please keep in mind that these suggestions are minimum requirements.
The level of preparation demonstrated in the lesson reflects not only the relative success of the preceding practice sessions, but also the consistent application of techniques and concepts in other performance situations. In other words, always apply what we are working on in the lessons.
Exams: A playing exam will be administered toward the end of each semester. All students registered for applied music will be required to perform. Exceptions may be made for those who performed a recital in that semester, only with my permission. Exam pieces that are scored with piano accompaniment must be performed with piano.
As of fall 2008, a new policy for acquiring accompanists has been instituted. You must request an accompanist online on the Student Information page.
The Collaborative Pianists have clearly stated policies that must be followed (deadlines). If all policies are followed, a pianist will be provided free of charge. The final responsibility for securing an accompanist rests on you.
Ensemble Participation: College of Music policy states: "All undergraduate students enrolled in applied music must participate in a University Ensemble appropriate to and required by their degree programs." In the trombone studio, ensembles that fulfill this requirement include University Symphony Orchestra, Wind Symphony, Symphonic Band and Concert Band. Additionally, performance majors (BM) may substitute Jazz Band for up to two semesters to fulfill this requirement. BME students will be in Marching band for one semester and may use Jazz Band for one semester to fulfill this requirement. Students in the BA degree may use Jazz Band for one semester.
Proficiency Examination: After four semesters of study, and after successfully completing the Listening Examination, each undergraduate student will be required to pass a Proficiency Examination in order to be eligible perform required recitals (BM and BME), or to complete the Bachelor of Arts applied music requirement. See specific trombone studio proficiency requirements.
Studio Class is an opportunity for members of this studio to meet as a group in a variety of settings - solo performances, ensembles, instrument maintenance, etc. Other suggestions are always welcome.
Materials: You are expected to own a professional quality instrument with compatible mouthpiece. From time to time changes might be suggested by me. While some experimentation is encouraged, you should confer with me before making changes. As mouthpieces have been consistently rising in costs, the school has purchased several newer mouthpieces for you to try. These are housed in the trombone studio and, after consultation with me, may be checked out for a trial period.
Other basic required materials include a metal straight mute, a metronome, electronic tuner and a recording device. Suggested brands/models and other necessary items can be found on the basic equipment list. Advanced students will require other mutes, instruments etc. Suggestions will be made as necessary.
You will be required to purchase various solos, etude books and texts each semester. The acquisition of a personal music library is fundamental to the continued growth and proficiency of a musician. I lend music and other materials for reference purposes only. These materials can be perused for no more than two weeks and may not be used for any performance. You should set aside $25-30 per semester for music purchase - suggestions/requirements may be made throughout the semester. With any excess funds, refer to the lists of recommended tenor trombone solos, bass trombone solos, tenor trombone etudes, bass trombone etudes and texts.
Photocopies, or other electronic usages of copyrighted music, without permission of the copyright owner, are not allowed in lessons. Additionally, illegal photocopies or electronic usages may not be used in any performance, including studio class, playing exams, recitals, etc.
Accommodation for Disabilities
If you qualify for accommodations because of a disability, please submit your accommodation letter from Disability Services to your faculty member in a timely manner so that your needs can be addressed. Disability Services determines accommodations based on documented disabilities in the academic environment. Information on requesting accommodations is located on the Disability Services website (www.colorado.edu/disabilityservices/students). Contact Disability Services at 303-492-8671 or firstname.lastname@example.org for further assistance. If you have a temporary medical condition or injury, see Temporary Medical Conditions under the Students tab on the Disability Services website and discuss your needs with your professor.
Campus policy regarding religious observances requires that faculty make every effort to deal reasonably and fairly with all students who, because of religious obligations, have conflicts with scheduled exams, assignments or required attendance. In this class, I will make accommodations on a case-by-case basis as necessary.
See the campus policy regarding religious observances for full details.
Students and faculty each have responsibility for maintaining an appropriate learning environment. Those who fail to adhere to such behavioral standards may be subject to discipline. Professional courtesy and sensitivity are especially important with respect to individuals and topics dealing with race, color, national origin, sex, pregnancy, age, disability, creed, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran status, political affiliation or political philosophy. Class rosters are provided to the instructor with the student's legal name. I will gladly honor your request to address you by an alternate name or gender pronoun. Please advise me of this preference early in the semester so that I may make appropriate changes to my records. For more information, see the policies on classroom behavior and the Student Code of Conduct.
Sexual Misconduct, Discrimination, Harassment and/or Related Retaliation
The University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder) is committed to maintaining a positive learning, working, and living environment. CU Boulder will not tolerate acts of sexual misconduct, discrimination, harassment or related retaliation against or by any employee or student. CU’s Sexual Misconduct Policy prohibits sexual assault, sexual exploitation, sexual harassment, intimate partner abuse (dating or domestic violence), stalking or related retaliation. CU Boulder’s Discrimination and Harassment Policy prohibits discrimination, harassment or related retaliation based on race, color, national origin, sex, pregnancy, age, disability, creed, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran status, political affiliation or political philosophy. Individuals who believe they have been subject to misconduct under either policy should contact the Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance (OIEC) at 303-492-2127. Information about the OIEC, the above referenced policies, and the campus resources available to assist individuals regarding sexual misconduct, discrimination, harassment or related retaliation can be found at the OIEC website.
All students enrolled in a University of Colorado Boulder course are responsible for knowing and adhering to the academic integrity policy. Violations of the policy may include: plagiarism, cheating, fabrication, lying, bribery, threat, unauthorized access to academic materials, clicker fraud, resubmission, and aiding academic dishonesty. All incidents of academic misconduct will be reported to the Honor Code Council (email@example.com; 303-735-2273). Students who are found responsible for violating the academic integrity policy will be subject to nonacademic sanctions from the Honor Code Council as well as academic sanctions from the faculty member. Additional information regarding the academic integrity policy can be found at the Honor Code Office website.