FACULTY AND STAFF


FACULTY AND STAFF

BARRY L. HOUSER | DIRECTOR OF THE MARCHING ILLINI & ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF BANDS

ANTHONY MESSINA | ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF ATHLETIC BANDS

ELIZABETH PETERSON | ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF BANDS

STEVE PETERSON | DIRECTOR OF BANDS

Aaron Kavelman | DRUMLINE INSTRUCTOR AND TEACHING CONSULTANT

Aaron Kavelman is a percussion educator, clinician, performer and composer who grew up listening and performing jazz alongside his father, an accomplished jazz pianist. Growing up in a musical family, Aaron watched his four older sisters in the high school band program. Inspired by the local marching bands, Aaron would tape a set of bongos onto a chair and choreograph drill in the backyard, thus the beginning for his love with the marching arts.

With twenty-two years’ experience teaching private lessons and twenty years teaching drumlines throughout Illinois, Aaron brings a wealth of experience and passion to whomever he teaches. Regardless if it is on a competitive field or in support of athletics, he demands top effort from each group. Aaron also has numerous compositional and arranging credits throughout the Midwest from a variety of percussion programs.

Aaron has a bachelor of music and a master of music in percussion performance from Illinois State University where he studied with Dr. Tom Marko, director of jazz, and served as the teaching assistant to Dr. David Collier, head of percussion. Aaron is currently working on his doctor of musical arts in jazz performance with professor Joel Spencer, along with a cognate in North Indian classical music under Dr. Christopher Macklin at the University of Illinois. He currently serves as the drumline instructor for the Marching Illini and continues an active writing, playing and independent clinician schedule.


GRADUATE CONDUCTING – TEACHING ASSISTANTS

Michelle Bell | DMA, GRADUATE CONDUCTING – TEACHING ASSISTANT

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Michelle Bell is excited to become a doctoral candidate in wind band conducting and serve as a graduate teaching assistant with the University of Illinois Bands. Michelle earned her master of music in wind band conducting from the University of Minnesota where she studied with Dr. Emily Threinen. While at UMN, she assisted with the Marching Band, University Band, Symphonic Band, and Wind Ensemble.

In 2018, Michelle was appointed Visiting Assistant Professor of Music at Emory & Henry College in Emory, VA where she assisted with the Marching Band and Concert Band, and directed the Pep Band and various chamber woodwind ensembles. She also taught courses in theory, conducting, instrumental methods, and woodwind methods. Prior to her time at E&H, Michelle taught at St. Cloud State University, where she directed the Sports Band.

Michelle graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2011, earning her bachelor of music education degree as well as a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the Army National Guard. Since then, she has served in the Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota Army National Guards. Currently, she holds the rank of Captain and is deployed as a Company Commander in support of the Southwest Border Mission, where she leads a company of over 100 Soldiers.

 

Isaac Brinberg | DMA, GRADUATE CONDUCTING – TEACHING ASSISTANT

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Isaac Brinberg is currently a doctoral candidate in wind band conducting and serves as a graduate teaching assistant with the University of Illinois Bands. Isaac received his master of music in wind conducting at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory, studying conducting with Steven D. Davis and Dr. Joseph Parisi, and tuba with Thomas Stein.
While at the UMKC Conservatory, Isaac served as a graduate teaching assistant for the bands at the conservatory and appeared as a guest conductor with the Conservatory Wind Symphony and Conservatory Wind Ensemble. He also was the conductor for the UMKC Saxophone Ensemble.Isaac is an active writer with varied interests, including research on West Side Story and innovative concert presentation. He also has research interests in the wind band music of Charles Ives, chamber opera and musical theater for winds, developing repertoire resources for directors, and conducting pedagogy.Isaac earned his bachelor of music education degree with a minor in wind conducting from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, graduating with High Distinction. At Indiana, Isaac studied tuba with Daniel Perantoni, and conducting with Dr. Jeff Gershman and Dr. Eric Smedley. Isaac then served as assistant band director at Discovery Middle School in Granger, Indiana, where he team-taught four concert bands, two extra-curricular jazz bands, and was on the marching band staff with Penn High School. Isaac also served as an ISSMA Solo and Ensemble and High School Organizational Contest adjudicator and the IBA All-State Tuba adjudicator.

Jeremy Sison | MM, GRADUATE CONDUCTING – TEACHING ASSISTANT

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Jeremy Sison is a candidate for the master of music in wind band conducting and serves as a graduate teaching assistant with the University of Illinois Bands. Previously, Jeremy taught eight years at Bowling Green Middle School and High School in Bowling Green, Ohio. He taught 6th beginning band, 7th grade band, 8th grade band, high school concert band, marching band, pep band, middle school jazz band, and high school jazz band. He conducted the pit orchestra for Bowling Green High School’s Footloose, Shrek, Newsies, High School Musical, and You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.

Jeremy received his bachelor of music education degree with a minor in wind conducting from the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University where he also studied trombone with Professor M. Dee Stewart. While at Indiana, Jeremy was a trombone section leader with the IU Marching Hundred, treasurer of the collegiate chapter of NAfME, played in symphonic band and trombone choir, and was a counselor for the IU Summer Music Clinic and College Audition Prep Program.

A native of the Chicago Suburbs, Jeremy attended Glenbard East High School and was a drum major of the marching band. In addition, Jeremy has played trombone and various reed books in many pit orchestras, and also played clarinet in the Bowling Green Community Band, Wheaton Municipal Band, and the Southern Indiana Wind Ensemble.


ATHLETIC BANDS TEACHING ASSISTANTS

Andrew Buckley | MM, ATHLETIC BANDS TEACHING ASSISTANT

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Clarinetist Andrew J. Buckley performs a diverse repertoire ranging from Bach, Brahms and Mozart, to Stravinsky, Nielsen, and Berio. Buckley’s unique presentation of classical and contemporary works, paired with mixed media elements is redefining what a classical concert experience is truly about. As the winner of the 2021 Krannert Debut Artist Competition, Buckley gave his professional debut recital this past April in the Krannert Center’s Foellinger Great Hall alongside pianist Chanmi Lee. Buckley has also given performances in notable venues around the country such as Hilbert Circle Theatre, Severance Hall, home of the Cleveland Orchestra, and Carnegie Hall, former home of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra.

As an active chamber and solo musician, Andrew respects and embraces the standard classical repertoire while fusing in more contemporary works and premieres of new music by living composers. As a chamber musician, Andrew is a founding member and the clarinetist of The Goodwin Avenue Trio. Founded in the fall of 2020, The Goodwin Avenue trio has performed on School of Music Chamber Music recitals, been featured by The International Clarinet Association, and has recently released their self-produced, recorded, and edited recording of the Brahms Clarinet Trio. In addition to his work as a chamber musician, Andrew has also performed a number of solo recitals, including live streamed performances during the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the summers of 2018, and 2019, Andrew performed as the Principal Clarinetist with the College Light Opera Company (CLOC) Orchestra in Falmouth, Cape Cod, giving over 110 performances of opera, musical theatre, and chamber music during his time there. During the summer of 2019, Buckley also held the position of orchestra manager. Andrew returned to CLOC in 2020 as an Assistant Digital Content Editor and Clarinetist to help the company deliver a fully online season during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. During his time at CLOC, Mr. Buckley collaborated with Broadway musicians, music directors, and producers such as Grant Strom, Andrew Bourgoin, Robert Schneider, Beth Burrier, Miles Plant, and Andrew Crust of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.

In May of 2020, Andrew received his Bachelor of Music in Music Education from Baldwin Wallace Conservatory of Music in Cleveland Ohio. As a student there, Buckley was the recipient of the E.S & M.R. Griffiths Music Talent Scholarship, the GAR Foundation Conservatory Scholarship, and the Professors Alan & Mary Squire Memorial Award.

As a student at Baldwin Wallace, Andrew frequently performed with large ensembles such as the Symphony Orchestra, Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Symphonic Band, and Jazz Ensemble in addition to multiple musical theatre productions as a woodwind specialist. In addition, Mr. Buckley also held the position of Conducting Apprentice with the Conservatory Wind Ensembles for the 2018 and 2019 seasons. In this position, Buckley conducted numerous concerts, concluding with his world premiere performance of new works by award winning composers Nabil Abad, and Steve Chauvette, with the Symphonic Wind Ensemble as part of the 2019 Ovation Festival. Andrew is currently attending the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to pursue a Masters in Clarinet Performance as a Graduate Teaching Assistant with The Marching Illini. Additionally, Mr. Buckley is an Eagle Scout of the Boy Scouts of America. For more information, please visit www.abuckleyclarinet.com.

Becca Frederick | MM, ATHLETIC BANDS TEACHING ASSISTANT

Becca Frederick currently attends the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where she is working on her masters degree in Horn Performance and Literature and serves as a graduate teaching assistant with the athletic bands. Becca earned her Bachelor of Music in Horn Performance from the University of Iowa in the spring of 2020, where she studied with Professor Jeffrey Agrell. At the University of Iowa, Becca was the recipient of the Old Gold Academic Scholarship, the P.A. Music Scholarship, the Future Educator Award, and Iowa’s Hispanic Heritage Scholarship.

After many years of observing career-ending hearing loss, Becca has recently taken a special interest in studying hearing conservation in professional musicians as well as finding a way to provide the deaf and hard of hearing community with a new way to enjoy musical performances.
During her time as a Hawkeye, Becca performed with numerous ensembles including Iowa’s Symphony Band, Symphony Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra, Brass Choir, Horn Choir, The Brassphemy Horn Quartet, The A.W. Brass Trio, and The Traux Quintet, as well as staying active as a soloist and a sought-after hire throughout the community. The Traux Quintet was selected and featured at the 2018 IBQ concert. Outside of performing on horn, Becca was the conductor of the Linn St. Band and a co-director of the local New Horizons Band for two years.
Becca was actively involved in the University of Iowa’s Hawkeye Marching Band for all four years, marching mellophone while simultaneously having a role on the band’s staff. She served as the Head Librarian, and was responsible for the timely distribution, organization, and collection of drill and music for all concert and athletic bands. She also worked hand-in-hand with the Band Manager to oversee the members of the Work Crew, manage their weekly hours, provide day-to-day logistical support to the band department, and many other duties as assigned. One of her biggest projects as Head Librarian was converting the entire band library into a new, electronic database during the summer of 2017.
In addition to playing horn, Becca is also an avid arranger. She studied both arranging and conducting with Dr. Eric Bush while obtaining her undergraduate degree. Becca’s arrangements have been performed by musicians far and wide, including The Hawkeye Marching Band, Iowa’s Horn Choir, The A.W. Trio, the New Horizons Band, Blue Devil Brass, Chris Castellanos of the Boston Brass, and many other musicians across the world via virtual performances during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In Becca’s free time, she volunteered at the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital where she worked in the PICU throughout her time in undergrad. She was able to coordinate special music performances for the children and families staying there, as well as create a unique bond with the patients.
Over the past few summers, Becca has participated in the Puerto Rico Summer Music Festival where she was principal horn, the Kendall Betts Horn Camp, and Invested Musician’s Summer MasterCourse where she has had the pleasure to study closely with Rupal and Andrew Bain, principal horn of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Becca has been on staff for the Iowa Summer Music Camps, the Bands of America Summer Symposium, and volunteered her time to the International Trombone Festival and the International Tuba Euphonium Conference. Becca’s favorite summer memory is having the opportunity to sing backup for Barry Manilow at the 2020 Hold the House Events. 

Bailye Hendley | MM, ATHLETIC BANDS TEACHING ASSISTANT

Image.jpegBailye Hendley is a current student at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign where she is in the process of acquiring her masters degree in Horn Performance and Literature under the guidance of Bernhard Scully. She is looking forward to the upcoming season where she will be a part of the University of Illinois Band Staff as a graduate teaching assistant. Bailye has spent a great deal of her collegiate career working deeply within the athletic band world as she was heavily involved with the Pride of the Southland Band during her studies at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She spent time traveling and playing with the university’s various pep bands while holding leadership positions within the band ranging from squad leader to undergraduate staff. During her time in Knoxville, Bailye studied with Dr. Katie Johnson-Webb majoring in Horn Performance while also minoring in Music Business. She held a variety of positions within Tennessee’s School of Music such as School of Music Ambassador, Vice-President of the International Horn Society Chapter at UTK, and a member of the Pi Kappa Lambda honor society. During her senior year she also spent time interning with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra.

Bailye has been a part of many ensembles including the UTK Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Opera Orchestra, Horn Choir, Brass Choir and all of UTK’s athletic bands. She also was presented with an opportunity to substitute with the Brevard Philharmonic in North Carolina.

Bailye has spend her collegiate career as an out of state student and calls Georgia her home. It is where her family lives and her love for music began. She is an alumni of the Jackson County School System where she started the French horn in sixth grade and then athletic bands in high school.

 

Sam Litt | MM, ATHLETIC BANDS TEACHING ASSISTANT

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Sam Litt is pursuing a masters in music education and currently serves as a graduate teaching assistant for the Illinois Athletic Bands. He has also served as a graduate student for the Sousa Archives and Center for American Music and as a teaching assistant for beginning conductors. Sam earned his bachelor of arts in music technology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  

While at UIUC, Sam played trumpet in many different ensembles including the Illinois Wind Symphony, Wind Orchestra, Hindsley Symphonic Band, Jazz Band, the Marching Illini, Illinois Basketball Band, brass quintets, and trumpet ensembles. For his dedication to the Illinois Bands program, he has been the recipient of the Guy M. Duker Symphonic Band Award, the Edmund C. Williams Award, and the A.A. Harding Award. 

Sam has competed with the Illinois Brass Band under the direction of Stephen Squires as solo cornet in the 2019 North American Brass Band Association competition. Sam is a student of Ronald Romm and Charles Daval. He is also a member of Kappa Kappa Psi and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.