Brian Unverricht (Concert Band)
Born, raised, and educated in Saskatchewan, Brian pursued further musical studies in New Jersey, Australia, France, and the University of Calgary. Now retired, for many years he taught band, choir, jazz studies, guitar, and general music to students from grades seven through university level in Saskatoon, Australia, Prince Edward Island, and military schools in Germany.
Over the years Brian was musical director for about 20 high school musicals, and as a proponent of new music, he commissioned eight composers from Saskatoon to write works for various performing groups. As a writer he has been published in Cadenza, the International Trombone Association Journal, and Canadian Winds, was editor of the Sask. Band Association journal, contributed to local music curricula, and wrote a high school guitar course. Recently he became a mentor teacher for emerging band directors.
Outside of school, Brian has been in demand as a low brass clinician, a conductor and/or coordinator for band camps, Brass Days or Jazz Days, an adjudicator for music festivals, and a conductor of the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra, where he annually conducts music for their “Silence is Golden” event. In recent years he conducted both the University of Saskatchewan concert band and wind orchestra.
Honours include the Saskatchewan Music Educators outstanding Achievement Award that recognizes outstanding accomplishment and an ongoing dedication to excellence in music in 2004, the Sask. Band Association Distinguished Band Director’s award in 2012, and an honourary life membership to SMEA in 2014.
As a trombonist, Brian has been a member of the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra for decades, and has performed with various brass quintets and jazz groups over the years. He can often be heard performing with the Saskatoon Jazz Orchestra, the Toon Town Big Band, the Saskatoon Klezmer band, and the Saskatoon Opera orchestra.
Dr. Gordon Brock (Concert Band)
Dr. Gordon R. Brock is Professor of Music and Director of Bands at the University of North Florida’s Music Flagship Program in Jacksonville, Florida, where he conducts the Wind Symphony, instructs courses in conducting and woodwind performance and coordinates the UNF Conducting Symposium. Earning his B.S.E. from Dickinson State University, M.M. from Michigan State University, and D.M.A. from the University of Colorado-Boulder, Dr. Brock’s career as a music educator encompasses elementary through university levels.
Under Dr. Brock’s leadership as chair (2002-12), the Department of Music was awarded an elite flagship designation (Music Flagship Program) and emerged as a program of prominence recognized throughout the region for its renowned faculty, dedication to student learning, and engagement with the community as it continues to garner recognition as one of the fastest growing and leading music programs in the country. Under Dr. Brock’s direction, the UNF Wind Symphony has performed at prestigious events and venues including the annual Upbeat Pink: A Musical Tribute to Breast Cancer Survivorship concert series in collaboration with the Mayo Clinic, the Florida Music Educators Association State Conference, Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall-Lincoln Center and the Southern Division College Band Directors Association/National Band Association Conference.
Before joining UNF, Dr. Brock was Director of Bands at the University of North Dakota, conductor of the Greater Grand Forks Youth Symphony, and the Grand Forks Chamber Ensemble. Under his direction, the UND Wind Ensemble performed at two North Dakota Music Educators Conferences, the Ohio Music Education Association/North Central MENC Professional Conference, and a joint concert series in Great Britain with the Central Band of the White Russian Army. In addition to an annual CD project dedicated to recording the best in traditional and contemporary wind literature, Dr. Brock instituted an annual Conducting Symposium, which attracted both regional and international participants. Having been twice honored by the Alberta Provincial Government for his nationally recognized ensembles and contributions to music education throughout Canada, Dr. Brock was also included in the fifth edition of “Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers.” In 2006, he was acknowledged as a Distinguished Alumnus of Dickinson State University and as the UNF Gerson Yessin Professor (2010-12). He has served as a guest conductor and clinician throughout the United States, Canada, Japan and Israel, and was most recently honored with guest conducting appearances with the United States Army Field Band and the President’s Own United States Marine Band.
Dr. Brock has performed with a broad spectrum of internationally recognized organizations within the mediums of chamber music, jazz, wind band, theater, dance, and orchestra. He is a member of the College Band Directors National Association (FL state chair, 2003-2005; ND state chair, 1995-99), Pi Kappa Lambda, Phi Beta Mu, National Association for Music Education, Florida Bandmasters Association, National Band Association, and the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles. A chapter contributor to the GIA publication, The Art of Interpretation of Band Music, Dr. Brock has also served as a Research Associate and author for the GIA instrumental music education series Teaching Music through Performance in Band, a series that functions as a primary text in more than 300 universities in the United States and 20 countries.
Gareth Jones (Concert Band)
Gareth Jones is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Calgary where is the director of the University’s Wind Ensemble and the Symphonic Band as well as being the Instructor of Trumpet. He is also the Director of the Alberta Winds, Calgary’s professional wind ensemble. In 2014 he was named the conductor of the National Youth Band of Canada. He was Assistant Principal Trumpet with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra from 1992 to 2007 and continues to play with the CPO whenever his conducting schedule allows. Before that, he held the same position with the Tulsa Philharmonic Orchestra. He has studied conducting with the renowned pedagogues Jorma Panula, Gustav Meier, Michael Haithcock, and Michael Jinbo. He has conducted ensembles from across Western Canada as well as Mexico and the United States. Mr. Jones’s musical activities are greatly varied. He has appeared as guest conductor and clinician with over two hundred orchestras and wind ensembles, been featured on Juno nominated blues CDs, appeared on CBC radio as a soloist and chamber musician, been a guest lecturer with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, been an adjudicator at music festivals across Canada, as well as conducting honour bands across Canada and was a reviewer for the recently updated Royal Conservatory of Music trumpet syllabus. He received the University of Calgary Teaching Excellence Award in 2018. In 1996, he placed first among North American competitors in the Ellesworth-Smith International Trumpet Guild Solo Competition, placing third worldwide. He can be heard playing chamber music, jazz, blues, and rhythm and blues with various groups around Calgary. As a conductor he founded the Calgary Honour Band and the University of Calgary Brass Choir. He was also a founding member of the chamber ensemble “Rosa Selvatica” and has been a featured soloist with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra on several occasions. He studied conducting at the Pierre Monteux Institute and Canada’s National Arts Centre and received his Master of Music in conducting from the University of Calgary. He studied trumpet at Northwestern University with renowned pedagogue Vincent Cichowicz, where he won the prestigious concerto competition and a scholarship for performing excellence. Gareth Jones is a Yamaha Artist.
Anita Eccleston (Jazz Band)
Anita Eccleston is a bandleader and educator based in Vancouver, British Columbia. She obtained her Bachelor of Music for Performance on Jazz Trumpet from McGill University and has been creating and sharing music ever since. She works professionally as both a jazz vocalist and trumpet player and is also a classical trumpeter. Notable performances include the Vancouver International Jazz Festival, Canadian Music Week and the Vernon Jazz Club and she has also appeared with the Dal Richards Big Band, Plastic Acid Orchestra, West Coast Symphony Orchestra, Kamloops Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Philharmonic Orchestra, Kamloops Big Band, Western Canada Theatre, and has been a featured jazz soloist with the Thompson Valley Orchestra.
As a recording artist, Eccleston has self-produced two EPs, Jazz EP, 2011 and Trio EP, 2013 and two LPs, More Trumpet, 2016 and So It Goes, 2014. She has also appeared on albums by Marina Legacé, Clara Schandler (Sidewalk Cellist), and various others. Eccleston is also part of Canada’s only all-female Mariachi band, Las Estrellas de Vancouver, and has recently traveled with them to Mexico and Los Angeles to perform at women’s mariachi festivals.
Doing clinics, masterclasses and workshops, Anita has adjudicated students and school bands in Districts 73 & 39, private schools in Vancouver, and the Kamloops Interior Summer School for Music (KISSM). Eccleston also attended the 2009 World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles (WASBE) Conference and played with the International Youth Wind Orchestra (IYWO) for the event. In 2018, working collaboratively with School District 73 and the Kamloops Music Collective, Eccleston successfully spearheaded an annual jazz workshop in Kamloops for aspiring jazz students called Jazz Jam! Anita maintains a private teaching studio in Vancouver for trumpet, voice and jazz ukulele. Anita is also a juror for FACTOR (The Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings).
Frank Gnandt (Choral)
Frank Gnandt has been apart of the music world for many years as a professional music, vocal and keyboard instructor, and choral director. In the choral realm he has conducted groups in both traditional choral and jazz styles. His groups have been apart of a myriad of choral festivals and conferences performing for such prestigious venues as the Vatican, Carnegie Hall, and the Sapporro Concert Hall. His choral groups have toured across North America and to Europe and Japan with the focus of sharing the joy of excellent choral music. He has been the recipient of the Excellence In Teaching Award from the Alberta Government and the Mathieson Trophy for Most Outstanding High School Choral Group in Canada! His groups have been requested as guest performers for such events as the Candian Rocky Mountain Music Festival, Musicfest Canada, Association of Canadian Choral Conductors and the International Association of Jazz Educators.
Frank is past Director of the Lethbridge Collegiate Institute and Chinook High School Chamber and Jazz Choirs. He is presently director of Caritas Chamber Choir and continues instruction in classical and jazz voice and piano in his private studio. He has been frequently requested as choral evaluator and workshop facilitator. He is the past Chairman of the Choral Division of Musicfest Canada, and a past member of the Alberta Choral Federation.
Katy Luyk (Choral)
Kathleen Luyk (née Skinner), B.Mus. (University of British Columbia, 2003), M.Mus. Choral Conducting (University of Alberta, 2005), is the executive director of Edmonton's Kokopelli Choir Association, a non-profit family of community choirs. She is in her fourteenth season with Òran (a young adult choir) and her fourth season with the new adult choir Vacilando. As a conductor, Kathleen strives to pair a well-researched pedagogy of excellence with the notion that choral singing is an incredible force in building community. As a conductor and composer on the Alberta choral scene, Katy has been engaged as a clinician, guest conductor, vocal coach, and adjudicator for choirs and singers around Canada.
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