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, CU Boulder.
Potential students are encouraged to contact Bill Stanley directly.
Hear College of Music Ensembles and CU Trombones
- Large Ensembles
- Thompson Jazz Studies
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:
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.
- Basic equipment
- Instrument maintenance
- Proficiency exam requirements
- Selected solos
- Selected study materials
- Orchestral Solo Passages
- Copyright and fair use
- Recital preparation checklist
- Warm-up/Fundamental material (2020)
- 100 things...
Declan Wilcox - BM in trombone performance and BME in music education with honors, 2021. Declan will begin the MM in trombone performance at Yale University in fall 2021.
Aaron Zalkind - DMA in Performance and Pedagogy 2021, BM Indiana University 2015, MM The Juilliard School 2017: Aaron was 2nd prize winner in the 2019 Steven Zellmer Trombone Competition; 1st prize winner in the 2019 International Women’s Brass Conference orchestral mock audition; 1st prize in the 2019 International Women’s Brass Conference military band mock audition. He has attended the 2018 Aspen Music Festival as a member of the Avery Brass Quintet in the American Brass Quintet Seminar, the 2019 Texas Music Festival and has been a member of the National Repertory Orchestra.
Mira Hickey - BME 2021. Beginning Fall 2021, Mira will be teaching 6-8th grade band and orchestra at Discovery Canyon Middle School in Colorado Springs.
Douglas Sternberg - BM in trombone performance 2021. Doug will be entering the master's program in Recording Arts at CU Denver in Fall 2021.
David Stern - BME 1993. MM in Performance and PhD in Fine Arts (Instrumental Conducting) from from Texas Tech University. For several years, David was Associate Professor of Music and Director of Instrumental Activities at Anderson University, Anderson, South Carolina. In Fall 2021, he will begin a new position as instructor of Low Brass and Music Education at the University of Maine in Orono.
Kenny Ross - MM in Performance and Pedagogy 2020. Kenny was the winner of the 2019 International Women’s Brass Conference Category 1 bass trombone solo competition, 3rd place overall; he was chosen as a Participant in the 2019 Christian Lindberg masterclass at the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival (only US representative) and was chosen as an Associate for the 2019 Cleveland Trombone Seminar. Kenny will begin the DMA at the University of North Texas in fall 2021.
Bill Combs - DMA in Performance and Pedagogy 2019, BM/BME Texas Tech 2011, MM University of Denver 2013, Performance Certificate DU 2014. Bill’s dissertation included a search for 21st-century sonatas for trombone and piano and a detailed performer’s analysis of several selected works. He recently joined our armed services and will be performing in the U.S. Army Regional Bands.
Yutaro Yazawa - BM in trombone performance 2019. Yutaro will be relocating to Japan for further study, teaching and freelancing.
Jose Leonardo Leon - DMA 2018, MM University of Miami 2011, BM Florida International University 2008. Jose is currently trombone instructor at Florida Atlantic University and at Florida Gulf Coast University. His 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. It was awarded a Silver Medal for Outstanding Achievement in the 2018 Global Music Awards.”.
Hear Jose: Rodriguez - A Short Account of a Long Journey – I. Guatire: Genesis, Roots & Tradition
Megan Dudek - BM in trombone performance, 2018. Megan received the MM at the Thornton School of Music, University of Southern California 2020.
Ben Garcia - BM in trombone performance 2018. Ben will be completing the MM at Indiana University in 2021.
Brandon Bird - BM in bass trombone performance, 2016. Brandon completed the MM at Northwestern University in 2018 and then spent time freelancing and teaching in the LA region. Recently he accepted a position on the orchestra personnel staff of the St. Louis Symphony.
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.
Mason Jackson - BM in trombone performance with an emphasis in jazz studies, and BME in music education, 2016. Mason taught at Western Sierra Collegiate Academy in Rocklin, CA and at St. Paul American School in Shanghai, China. He is currently teaching HS band in Merced, CA.
Reid Lasley - BM in bass trombone performance 2016, MM University of Illinois 2018 and is in the DMA program there, holding a studio assistantship.
Jamey Morgan - BM in trombone performance with Honors, 2016, Performers Certificate at Penn State University, MM at Michigan State University where he is in the DMA program. He was selected as co-winner of the 2020 International Trombone Association Alto Trombone Competition, and also as co-winner of the 2020 ITA Frank Smith Tenor Trombone Competition.
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 on Apple Music.
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
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.
Hear Matt: Martin - Ballade (1941)
Jim Gray - MM in trombone performance, 1994 - bachelor's 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 NYC area. He completed the Masters in Jazz Composition at the New England Conservatory and received the DMA in Jazz Composition at the University of Texas at Austin. After a few years teaching at Utah Valley University, he recently accepted a position as Director of Jazz Studies at Collin College in Plano, TX. 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
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.
Hear Sean: Pryor - Blue Bells of Scotland
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.
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. He completed the MM at the New England Conservatory of Music and worked for several years in the Organizing and Education Division of the American Federation of Musicians in NYC.
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.
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.