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Hartt Alumni

Joseph Abad

Degree(s):

AD Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2012

MM Saxophone Performance, Arizona State University, 2009

BM Saxophone Performance/BA English, University of California – Davis, 2007

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Co-Founder, Prometheus Duo

Co-Founder/Soprano Saxophonist, Asylum Quartet (performed over 150 concerts in first three seasons)

Music and Arts, Private Lesson Instructor

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Prometheus Duo (current)

Asylum Quartet (2012-2017)

Advice for Current Students:

*How are you building on your “multiple revenue streams” when you graduate college? Aside from performing, how else do you plan on obtaining income in/out of the music field?

*How many students do you have?

*Can you arrange music? Are you familiar with music notation software?

*Can you make a music flyer? Are you familiar with photo editing software?

*Do you have basic knowledge of studio recording procedures? Are you familiar with recording 

software?

*What other part­time opportunities (in and out of the arts) can help you keep your art afloat?

 

*What other creative outlets are you pursuing, to keep your portfolio current?

 

*What are other colleges teaching that you wish you could learn? Can you investigate this material on your own?

 

*What are other ensembles doing that you wish you could pull off? Can you reach out to them? (Do they need an administrative assistant or someone to do side work? It could be you!)

 

*How do you plan on practicing in a new (or your current) town/city? Are there facilities that will 

allow it? Will your residence allow it? How do you plan on practicing with the ensemble that you are in?

 

*If you trust them – offer your musical and administrative services to others, being honest about your 

abilities. Take a stab. It could prove to be useful down the road!

 

*Take as many gigs as you can to build momentum, but ultimately see (and prove!) your worth. You 

should be paid accordingly for your music, as any contracted service. Ask yourself if the potential 

networking at a gig could be worth it, along with the fee/stipend, the work necessary to put on this 

performance, and the time it takes away from your life.

 

*Practice to fulfill the commitment to the instrument and to your own personal artistry.

*Come into practice sessions with absolute goals; when you are working and have less time on your

hands, you’ll wish you practiced that one passage thoroughly, instead of noodling on your “favorite” passages to “reacquaint” you with the instrument.

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

To me, balance is crucial. While practicing is absolutely necessary, please don’t forget to take care of yourself. You need to be cognizant enough to understand WHY you are in the music field. Smell the roses. 

Hartt Alumni

Connor Baba

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2019
BA Saxophone Performance and Jazz Studies, California State University Stanislaus, 2015

Current Employment/Employer(s):

The Glenn Miller Orchestra, baritone saxophonist

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Co-founder of indie band Atlas Infinity

Brian Kendrick Big Band

The Temptations Review

BP Saxophone Quartet

Advice for Current Students:

Practice your weaknesses at the beginning of your practice session and your strengths at the end. It’s easy to put off your weaknesses indefinitely. Practice your doubles like they are your primary instrument. Improvise. If nothing else, learn how to blow over a blues. Someone, someday is going to want you to do that whether you like it or not.

HartT Pre-College Division Alumni

Lauren Bagshaw

Degree(s):

Hartt Pre-College Division, 2016

BM Saxophone Performance and Music Education, BS Social Policy, Northwestern University, 2021

Current and/or Fromer Employment/Employer(s):

 Summer 2019, Development Intern: Cradles to Crayons, Chicago

Summer 2020, Intern: Naomi Ruth Cohen Institute for Mental Health Education, Chicago

Advice for Current Students:

It’s okay to not know what you want to do and to try out different things. If you end up doing something completely unexpected and different than what you set out to do, that’s great! That’s not failure, that’s self-discovery. Try not to compare yourself to others and just do what’s best for your own happiness and well-being.

Hartt Alumni

Andrew Barnhart

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2013 
BA Saxophone Performance, University of California, Los Angeles, 2011

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Saxophone Teacher, Napa School of Music, 2016-present

Library Supervisor, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, 2016-Present

Co-Founder/Baritone Saxophonist, Asylum Quartet, 2013-Present

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Technical Services Coordinator, Allen Library, University of Hartford, 2014-2016

Music Instructor, Cazadero Performing Arts Camp, 2006-2009

Advice for Current Students:

-Befriend as many different types of people in the music field as possible; not just those that play your instrument. Many (if not most) of your opportunities in the future will come from friendships and connections with people who don’t play saxophone (conductors, composers, other instrumentalists, etc.)


-As a musician, it’s ok to make a career doing more than one thing. You are not failing by having eggs in a few different baskets (performing, teaching, administrative work, etc.). Earning a living from 2-3 different things can allow you to take some creative and artistic risks! Organization skills become very important– scheduling, planning, arranging travel, budgeting.

 

-Some logistical advice: When you’re done with school, you lose access to a lot of resources overnight (practice space, library privileges, school instruments, funding). You can plan for this, by trying to own as much of your own equipment, music and supplies as possible, living somewhere you can practice, rehearse with a small group and teach, etc. If you’re hoping to do a lot of performing, try to have as many of the different horns as is feasible, and play them regularly. It’s frustrating to have to turn down a gig because you don’t have a tenor, or have never played soprano, or you can’t borrow a bari that week. Get a passport if you don’t have one, so you can travel internationally if the opportunity arises quickly– it takes a while. Lastly, get instrument insurance!

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

I am currently performing with the Asylum Quartet, a chamber ensemble based in Hartford. All four members are former graduate students of Professor Koffman and The Hartt School. I’ve recently relocated back to my native California, and am currently teaching and performing throughout the bay area!
 

Hartt Alumni

Chris Beers

Degree(s):

BSE Acoustics and Music, The Hartt School/University of Hartford, 2006

MS Acoustics, Penn State University, 2007

Current Employment/Employer(s):

 Acoustical Engineer, designing medical ultrasound probes Sound Technology, Inc., State College, PA

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

I play tenor in the Keystone Society of Swing, a local 17-piece big band playing Basie, Ellington, Buddy Rich, Maynard Ferguson, etc.

Advice for Current Students:

There are so many performances easily accessible (fellow students, guest artists, master classes): attend as many as possible. Look especially for unusual or diverse music from across the departments (instrumental, vocal, choral, musical theater).

Hartt Alumni

Matt Bell

Degree(s):

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2007

Current Employment/Employer(s):

 CyFair ISD – Music Teacher/Choir Director, Cypress, TX; Private Lesson Teacher

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Torrington Public Schools – General/Instrumental Elementary Music Teacher, 2007-2013

Alumni

Jennifer Bill

Degree(s):

DMA Saxophone Performance, Boston University, 2007

MM Saxophone Performance, Boston Conservatory, 2002

  BA Providence College, 2000

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Boston University

Providence College

Boston College

Rhode Island College

Pine Manor College 

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

BRUSH|REED  (www.brushreed.com)

Music Performance and Education, Inc. (www.musicperformanceandeducation.org

Advice for Current Students:

Be open, willing, and prepared to do anything in this art form that you hopefully love.

University of New Mexico Alumni

Quinn Bumgarner-Kirby

Degree(s):

BA Music Performance, University of New Mexico, 2001

JD, University of New Mexico Law School, 2005

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Self (sole practitioner law practice)

Former Employment/Employer(s):

State of NM, Public Defender Dept.

Advice for Current Students:

Enjoy school and get all you can out of it while you’re in it! While it can seem like a slog at times, college is a blessing and a privilege. Depending on your career path, you may find that for a while at least, school was way more fun than working is.

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life? It’s great! Love my family and my job. PS You were the music teacher that all other music teachers are measured against for me. I’m lucky to have learned from you.

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

I continued playing in a salsa band through law school, but the late night gigs eventually became incompatible with the rest of my life. I didn’t do anything musical for quite awhile. Then, almost two years ago, I started taking piano lessons with our son Harlan, who is now 9. (Actually we go together, but have our own lessons). I love it (I think piano is what I always wanted to play). I don’t have any desire to perform right now but find it to be a great solitary activity. I try to practice at least an hour a day and am currently taking a stab at my first Beethoven sonata (the slow movement anyway). It’s very interesting to approach an instrument with a strong musical background but zero technical skills. In fact, it’s not as frustrating as I thought it might be. It’s also so cool to share music with my kid, and to see him develop skills, confidence, and artistry. We just enjoyed our second Junior Festival yesterday.

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

It’s great! Love my family and my job. PS You were the music teacher that all other music teachers are measured against for me. I’m lucky to have learned from you.State of NM, Public Defender Dept.

Penn State University Alumni

Chris Bygott

Degree(s):

MM Wind Conducting, Penn State University, 2004

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Pennsbury School District (PA)

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Saxophonist and Assistant Conductor – Delaware Valley Wind Symphony

Saxophonist – Bucks County Symphony

Conductor and Musical Director – Pennsbury Community Band

Advice for Current Students:

 Get involved in as many different musical opportunities as you can while you can. 

Former Employment/Employer(s):

East Windsor Regional School District (PA)

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

I also maintain an active studio of private flute, clarinet, and saxophone students. 

Hartt Alumni

Ben Carraher

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2014

BM Music Education, Mansfield University, 2012

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Co-Founder, Prometheus Duo

Co-Founder/Soprano Saxophonist, Asylum Quartet (performed over 150 concerts in first three seasons)

Music and Arts, Private Lesson Instructor

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

World Premiere of Piet Swerts’ "Black Paintings" at World Saxophone Congress in France 

Advice for Current Students:

Don't pick up a cat by its tail. No matter what, your friends love you anyway. 

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

Living happily with my wife, daughter, and dog!

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Mid-West School District, PA, middle school music

Newport School District, PA, high school marching band, jazz band, and musical pit director

Self-employed, teach private lessons

Harrisburg City School District – elementary music teacher and music department supervisor

Hartt Alumni

Jared Charrette

Degree(s):

Jazz Studies/Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2012

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Disneyland Resort

Freelance Musician

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

2d Marine Air Wing Band

“The Disneyland Band”

“5 & Dime” Band (Disney California Adventure)

Various jazz groups in Southern California

“Puremotion” funk/rock group

Advice for Current Students:

*Don't limit yourself with labels and other mental boundaries. Jazz, Classical, Pop, etc., it’s all the same – MUSIC! Strive to be the best musician first. The details are much easier to fill in after you have a real solid musical core (and a solid understanding of different musical styles).

*On that same note, work hard to limit your weaknesses and improve your weaker areas as much as you can. Only a classical player? Work on your improvisation. Only a jazz improviser? Work on classical and ensemble playing. Only play one horn? Get confident in all the saxes and doubles (flute/clarinet minimum). The musicians that I see working the most are the ones who can play effectively in the most styles. Gigging horn players I know (in Southern California) player everywhere: salsa/Latin bands, jazz big bands, small independent solo groups, larger concert (classical) ensembles, various recording sessions, churches, weddings, really anything that they can get paid to do – they do it!

*Unions DO help. As a Disneyland musician there’s a CBA with the AFM local 7, and they really do work hard to advocate for musicians’ rights and benefits. It’s also a great place to network with other professional musicians in your area (the local 47 has regular big band reading sessions and great players coming together to sharpen their teeth), and it can even get you the occasional gig or private student.

 

*It’s hard to understate how the simple little things help you: be on time/early to gigs, dress well, be polite, and don’t talk negative about your peers or gossip, etc. These are things that I picked up kind of automatically through my military experience that many in the “real world” sometimes seem to miss. So if I surpassed others professionally many times it wasn’t because I was a better player, but because I have a record of professionalism that others can easily rely on at their gigs.

 

*BTW: don’t balk at (all) unpaid gigs. Some, yes, are simply trying to take advantage of you. But I’ve done several that resulted in connections to other real paying gigs. Best Example: I was playing in a “reading big band” doing traditional swing stuff for a couple months when I first moved out to CA. Eventually auditions for Disneyland musicians came out. When I walked in the audition room, who did I see on the hiring board? One of the trombone players from that reading band! I’m sure that he had a better idea of who I was as a person and musician, and was much more confident in hiring me after our experience playing together at that reading session!

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

You guys, I’m actually playing my horns and getting paid to do it!!! It is such an incredible blessing to know that I wouldn’t rather do anything else in the world, but I can still support myself financially doing that very thing!!! In other words, if a schmuck like me can do it, YOU CAN DO IT TOO!!! Thanks for the interest in your students after they leave your program. It shows great commitment and personal interest in your students and your work!!!

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Music & Arts Center

Private Lesson Studio

After School Tutoring

penn state university Alumni

Matt Clauhs

Degree(s):

PhD Music Education, Temple University, 2010

MM Music Education, UMass Amherst, 2008

BS Music Education, Penn Sate University, 2005

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Assistant Professor of Music Education, Ithaca College

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Implementing District-wide Contemporary Ensemble Program (Modern Band)

Playing in variety of dance bands, jazz groups, etc.

Advice for Current Students:

Take advantage of the time and freedom to be creative. Leave the practice room once in a while to read, travel, experience art, and spend time with friends and family.

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

Carrie Koffman is the best!

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Johnson City Central School District; Boston Arts Academy; Berklee College of Music

Hartt Alumni

Lisa Conant

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2013

BM Music Education, University of Connecticut, 2011

Current Employment/Employer(s):

New London Public Schools, Middle School Band Director

Advice for Current Students:

Take advantage of every opportunity to perform and see great music being made!

Hartt Alumni

Kara Cook

Degree(s):

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2014

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Regional School District 6 (James Morris School, Goshen Center School, Warren Elementary School)

Band /Jazz Band Instructor - Grades 4-6

Middlesex Music Academy, Private Saxophone/Clarinet Instructor - all ages

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Dan Lis Master's Thesis - "Fraternity With All Those Good and Beautiful Things", Tenor Saxophone, Saxophone Quartet

Pit Orchestra for Musicals, "Grease" - Wamogo Regional High School; "The Sound of Music" - St. Joseph's High School; Reggae Band called Elm City Sound

Advice for Current Students:

Work as hard as you can in school because that is the time when you have the support from your teachers and advisors. Once you leave, you're on your own for the most part, unless you specifically ask for help. You want to get as much out of every aspect of your education as you can, because it will fly by! Once you do get out into the world, though, don't be afraid to ask for help - there is always someone there

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

 Working two part-time jobs was not a bad start, but if I could have done it again, I would have applied to more jobs earlier on, even just to get interview experience. If a full-time job did not seem possible, I would have tried to get two part-time jobs closer to each other. But, I was happy with the experiences I got last year. It's a wonderful feeling to condense down to three schools, all in one district, even though I still have an hour long commute this year. It is good to be playing more this year than I did last year, also. In addition to the current musicals, I have another one coming up in August. It is important for me to stay musically involved in order to be a better teacher, and to keep my sanity. I have played music since I was in 4th grade, and when I was not playing as much, there was a big part of my life missing. I am still having TMJ issues, but am currently trying to work through them. Keeping in touch with friends from college is also an important part of life after college, especially since my family is still on Long Island. It's important to make time for social activities when you have some free time. Too much work and not enough social interaction can drive you crazy. Overall, I am very satisfied with my life right now. My goal for the next couple of years is to find a job where I can be in one building, and not so far from where I live. But for now, I am happy.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

CT Future Musicians - Band/General Music Teacher (St. Mary St. Michael, Assumption school, St. Francis St. Hedwig, Band - grades 4-8, General Music - grades K-4

Regional School District 17 (Haddam-Killingworth Middle School), General Music Teacher - 6th and 7th grade

Hartt Alumni

Joe D'Aleo

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, University of Michigan, 2012

BM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2010

Current Employment/Employer(s):

United States Coast Guard Band, tenor saxophonist

Thames Valley Music School, saxophone instructor

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

*Recently formed a Reed quintet with members of USCG Band for a series of educational outreach concerts that has quickly turned into a serious group. We're all so excited about the colors of this ensemble (oboe, clarinet, bass clarinet, bassoon, saxophone). 

*Two days ago I was asked to conduct the USCG Brass Ensemble in a performance of Wagner's "Elsa's Procession to the Cathedral", which I happily said yes to. I would say this is a creative project because I have no idea what I'm doing and the concert is in a month. Creativity will play a key role in how I manage to pull this one off.

Advice for Current Students:

1. Be the worst musician in the room; hang out with the big kids all. the. time. 

2. Treat all of your studio assignments and work as the most important work you do. I find that you learn a lot about yourself in how you approach this work load. If it's taken seriously enough, it actually bleeds into all other aspects of your life in such a positive way. 

 

3. Always be curious; and never stop looking for what you want. 

 

4.  Be open to the possibility of a career in music. This goes far beyond the spectrum of performance.   

 

5. Collaborate with as many musicians as possible. Musically speaking, this is where we all grow up. 

 

6. If there's a musician/performer/educator/etc. that inspires you, make it a point to see them do what they do at least once a year. It's a humbling reminder of the greatness you often want for yourself. 

 

7. Passion and attitude are contagious. For the better, bring both to the table every day. 

 

8. You are what you listen to.

 

9. Throughout your studies in music and beyond that, you always have a choice. Often times these choices must be made after a 'loss'. Loss can include: letters of rejection . . . losing a competition . . . not performing well . . . bad auditions . . . etc. Man, I have lost. A lot. My two choices? Wallow in self-pity, or get up and go at it harder. I always chose the latter. 

 

10. There are a lot of good teachers. There's also a lot of great teachers. But there are very few special teachers. When you are fortunate enough to entrust your passion for music with a special teacher, they will push you past your limits into the world we call artistry. 

 

11. April 22, 2010. The end of my senior year of college, I drove into New York City to see one of my biggest inspirations, violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg. Star struck after her concert, I asked if she would write some advice for me on her paper program. She wrote "To Joe – practice . . . it's worth it."

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

I have three cats. I never thought I would have three cats. I never really thought I would have one cat. It’s a little weird. I've always said that people who have more than 2 cats qualify as weird cat people. While I don't hang out with my cats all day, I do find myself asking them for advice occasionally. I suppose I'm officially a weird cat person.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

University of Massachusetts-Amherst, saxophone instructor

Port Huron High School Band Camp, sax/marching instructor

University of Miami, teaching assistant

New World Symphony Orchestra, saxophone sub-list

Palm Beach Symphony Orchestra, guest saxophonist 

penn state university Alumni

Gregory Drane

Degree(s):

PhD Music Education, Penn State University, In Progress

MM Music Education, Penn State University, 2005

BM Saxophone Performance/Music Education, Bethune-Cookman University, 2002

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Penn State University – Director, Penn State Blue Band

Director of Athletic Bands

Instructor, Music Education 

Hartt Alumni

Scott Edwards

Degree(s):

BSE Acoustical Engineering and Music, The Hartt School/University of

Hartford, 2010

MM Incomplete – I attended one semester at Boston Conservatory pursuing a

Master’s Degree of Saxophone Performance

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Cross-Spectrum Acoustics Inc. (Sept 2014-present) – small acoustical consulting firm that specializes in environmental and transportation noise and vibration consulting services.

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

*I played 40+ gigs last summer on Cape Cod with a reggae/rock band.  The highlight was Oysterfest in Wellfleet – crowd estimates were pushing 10k.

*I have been working on a few recording projects – one on sax and two on kalimba.

*I do play in bar bands/wedding bands/whatever gig I get asked to do – I try to never say no to an invite to play. But honestly, I very rarely play classical music anymore because it frustrates me beyond words to not be able to sound how I would like to sound. I simply do not have the time to get back to the level of playing that I was at during undergrad and grad school. I know that one day I will get back there, but now is not that time.

Advice for Current Students:

 If I had the chance to do college all over again, I would choose the exact same path that I took – acoustics and music at UHart. I am very happy with my career. However, I wish that someone really got my attention during college and told me, “this may be the best that you will ever be at your instrument.” I feel like I heard things like that from teachers, but I guess it never really hit home. During college, it felt like I would be surrounded by musicians and practice rooms and ensembles and music libraries and nightly live concerts for the rest of my life. Unfortunately, that’s not how it goes. And that’s not just from a lawyer or engineer - I even hear that from friends of mine who went the music ed route. Music school is like a fantasy world – I don’t care how tired you are, you will never get the chance to redo it, so get the most out of those musicians and practice rooms and ensembles and music libraries and nightly live concerts while you can.

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

I travel all over the country for work making noise and vibration measurements.  I get to go to a lot of great cities, meet tons of interesting people, and work on an impressive variety of projects.  I basically live out of a suitcase, but I make my own hours and work wherever there is an internet connection.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH) (Jan 2011-Sept 2014) Approximately 30-40 person environmental services company. I worked as an acoustical consultant in the rail group specializing in transportation noise.

Hartt Alumni

Elizabeth

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2006

BM Music Education, University of New Hampshire, 2004

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Port Washington UFSD (public school district of Port Washington, NY)

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Currently in dissertation phase of a doctorate in education

Advice for Current Students:

Work hard and be nice. Also, your resume will get you an interview while your interview will get you a job, so if you don't have much of a personality or people skills, consider those things as areas to work on if you are serious about future employment opportunities. A lot of people obsess about their GPA, but you don't have to have a 4.0 to be considered a candidate for a good job. You're better off joining a few clubs on campus and "getting a life" (so to speak) and getting a 3.8 instead of that 4.0. A lot of being a band director involves relating to kids, their parents, and other teachers and administrators. There are a lot of relationships to navigate and one or two false steps can cost you your job especially if you're untenured. So yes, learn to be an excellent musician, but also learn to be professional, relatable, and someone other people want to be around. 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life? I will add that I wouldn't be the teacher I am if I had not been taught by you – Carrie Koffman; I utilize what you taught me on a regular basis and pass down your knowledge to my own students. So thank you for doing what you do and for always striving for excellence. 

Hartt Alumni

Kendra Emery

Degree(s):

BM Saxophone Performance, University of Arizona, 2009

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2011

GPD Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2012

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Adjunct faculty at the College of Southern Nevada: History of Rock, Music Appreciation; Woodwind Instructor/Admin at Nevada Music Academy 

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Middlesex Music Academy- saxophone and clarinet instructor; Music and Arts- saxophone and clarinet instructor

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Highlights:

*Beautiful Mess- Album of saxophone/voice/electronic works, 9 commissions- released October 2014

*Just For Fun Ensemble- formed, arranged, and coached an adult chamber group from within 2012-2015 (still exists, now coached by Colette Hall)

*Working on creating the music (writing and recording) for the dramatic reading release of the book "Filtered" by G.K. Lamb- current

*Duo collaboration with Colette Hall: we did a score call which resulted in 60+ submissions, sent recordings to all the composers who didn't currently have recordings of their pieces (about 40) and played the selected winners in concert, including a premiere by a new work by David Macbride - 2015

*Music a la carte- 4 composers from Hartt wrote music to be paired with a 4-course meal at the Pondhouse Cafe, Hartt students performed the music along with the meal- Spring 2010

Advice for Current Students:

Practice always and whenever there is a spare second in your day. Also go to concerts, lots of them. It is just as important as being in the practice room. Do things outside of school; there is no reason you shouldn't be trying to play concerts. Especially around the time of your recital, get a church to let you play a free will concert of your program rep if you have a pianist who is willing to do it, or get enough quartet rep ready to take that out to the public. Get used to marketing yourself and scrounging for concerts now.

 

Hartt Alumni

Steve Fitzgerald

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2008

BM Music Education, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, 2006

Current Employment/Employer(s):

 Regional School District 13, Durham, CT, Band Director; 102d United States Army Band, Musician

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Lead saxophonist with 30s/40’s swing band – Simply Swing

Advice for Current Students:

*Make the most of your time with Professor Koffman - She is a tremendous human being - she will help you be a better musician and a better individual.

 

*At Hartt you have the ability to hear diverse and engaging performances. Attend as many as you can

 

*Explore other studios. Explore what you might not think you are into. Listen as much as you can.

 

*Practice often and efficiently: your time in school will allow the largest window for time to really with the instrument. Once you get outside of school - time and scheduling will be one of the hardest things to manage.

 

*Set both short term and long term goals for your playing - keep a daily journal.

 

*Really get to know everyone in your studio - your colleagues are a tremendous resource - look out for and take care of each other.

If you are planning on teaching in a school setting:

 

*Start interacting with kids as soon as possible (observe other teachers, teach private lessons) - the ability to read kids and engage them is so important.

 

*Be yourself - do not try to be someone that you are not - kids will recognize the difference.

 

*Steal ideas from teachers that are better than you - make them your own.

 

*Do not assume students will come to you wanting to learn music - it is your responsibility to get them fired up about it.

 

*Admit your own mistakes.

 

*Come to every class over prepared (i.e. score study - even if it is 4th grade material, know every fingering and know intricacy of any piece you are working on).

 

*Befriend every administrative and custodial staff member in the building - you will need their help a lot.

 

*Understand the responsibility you have - take it seriously and if you see yourself losing interest or getting complacent - get out - future musicians deserve the best you have.

 

*There is beauty in the struggle.

Hartt Alumni

Christina (Lanergan) Garrison

Degree(s):

MM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2012

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2005

Current Employment/Employer(s):

South Windsor Public Schools – 4th and 5th Grade Band and Orchestra

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Been in South Windsor since I graduated :)

Alumni

Vito Giacalone

Degree(s):

DC (Doctor of Chiropractic), New York Chiropractic College, 2014

MM Saxophone Performance, New England Conservatory of Music, 2008

BA Woodwind Performance, Boston University, 2006

Current Employment/Employer(s):

NSC Health and Wellness in Worcester, MA

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Learning Punjabi and Tabla, as well as several marketing ideas for my practice. The amount of saxophone playing I am able to do is not what I would like.  Currently, I find myself just playing through exercise books. I would love to get together with a quartet of sax players who would be interested in arranging covers of popular music. Until time is more accessible, I am at the whim of our Creator.

Advice for Current Students:

Listen to and do everything Professor Koffman tells you (no she did not tell me say that). Long tones, scales, and exercises will never be beneath you. They are extremely humbling.

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

There is not enough time in this life to do everything that you want to do. Do everything you can, while you can. Always count your blessings, and never forget to take the bad with the good. So proud to be one of yours. ☺

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Saxophone Instructor at King Philip Regional High School in Wrentham, MA; Finance in the New York Air National Guard at Hancock Field in Syracuse, NY

Penn state university Alumni

Eric Hahn

Degree(s):

MA Music Theory, Penn State University, 2013

MM Wind Conducting, Penn State University, 2010

BS Music Education, Penn State University, 2005

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Bangor Area School District (PA); Bald Eagle Area School District (PA)

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

The Allentown Band (Allentown, PA)

Advice for Current Students:

No matter how frustrating, overwhelming, or menial they may seem, mastering the fundamentals will always benefit you in the long run. Learn your scales, all of them. Learn your thirds, and fourths, and fifths, and chromatics. Listen A LOT, to everything. Listen to saxophone music. Listen to non-saxophone music. Listen to Jazz. Listen to non-Jazz. Listen to vocalists. Sing in a choir. Be a complete musician. Learn the history of music, and the saxophone. Play in small ensembles. Try new things. Take risks. Trust your teacher. Enjoy what you are doing.

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

For a long time, I found the time to play outside of teaching. Specifically, I performed with a strong community concert band. Now, I am lucky to find the time to play in school with my students. Always, make time in your day to play. Get up early or stay up late. Give up an hour of something else in order to make it happen. Take gigs and plan recitals if you have to in order to have motivation. Playing is what makes us know what to say in order to make our students play better. 

Hartt Alumni

Colette Hall

Degree(s):

DMA Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2015

MM Saxophone Performance, Duquesne University, 2010

BM Music Education, SUNY Potsdam, 2007

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Hartford Symphony Orchestra, Artistic Operations Manager

Hartt School Community Division, Saxophone Teacher

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Resurgam Quartet, Alto saxophone

Hall/Emery Duo, Saxophone Duo Score Call and Premiers

QuadrATOMIC Saxophone Quartet, Tenor Saxophone 

Advice for Current Students:

Take advantage of as many opportunities as you can, you never know where you will end up! There are so many different careers in music and the arts. Since our degree programs have us focus specifically in one area, we sometimes lose sight of the fact that there are tons of options. Don't be afraid to pursue other opportunities or areas of interest, the most successful musicians are those who combine their love of music with their other passions.

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

I moved to Hartford to pursue my degree and didn't think I would remain here following completion of my degree. However, I have decided to continue living in Hartford because of the great jobs that I have, both of which I started before finishing my degree.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Hartford Symphony Orchestra, Assistant Manager, Artistic Operations

Hartford Symphony Orchestra, Artistic Coordinator

Hartford Symphony Orchestra, Ticket Services Representative

Hartt School Adjunct Chamber Music Coach

Duquesne University, Adjunct Professor of Saxophone,

Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Telephone Sales Representative

QuadrATOMIC Saxophone Quartet, Tenor Saxophone/General Manager

Hartt Alumni

Daniel Higgins

Degree(s):

MM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2011

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2006

BM Performance (Jazz Concentration), Western Connecticut State University, 1990

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Newtown Public Schools

Private studio instruction (about 15 students)

Pit work - flute, clarinets, saxophones

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Regional School District 17 (Haddam-Killingworth)

Advice for Current Students(music education):

Do not get your masters or other advanced degrees until you are secured in a district/tenured. You will be priced out of the market.  

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life? This summer will be my 9th year as a Hartt School Summerterm administrator, and my 3rd as an adjunct professor teaching a woodwind refresher workshop. Every day I channel you! I open my mouth and your voice speaks. You are my Guru.

Hartt Alumni

Brian Ho

Degree(s):

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2009

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Instrumental Music Teacher at Danbury Public Schools, Private Lessons Teacher

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Alto saxophonist, Plainville Wind Ensemble

Advice for Current Students:

In the saxophone studio you are not treated any differently because of what your major is so it is critical to learn to balance the time between practicing and doing the work for your other classes. Yes, at the time I did not enjoy waking up really early and playing my scales for technique class on Wednesday on top of a heavy course load but after all this time that I've graduated I can still play all of my major and minor scales, thirds, and even some of my major fourths. So yes, it is worth it. Go to concerts while you still can (and don't have to pay for them) and learn as much as you can from your classes. The quality of the teacher you will be depends on your standards for yourself and your students and that starts NOW. If you're an education major observe teachers as much as you can. During my time there I was fortunate to have the opportunity to observe Glen Adsit teach high school multiple times. He's really good at that and kids love him. He may still teach GHYWE on Sundays. Find some sort of a balance between working hard and having at least a little bit of a life. The four years (or possibly more) feel incredibly short. Keep in touch with people you know after your time at Hartt and make attempts to go see them once in a while. 

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

I just came back from a vacation to Japan. It was my first time overseas. It was probably the best experience of my life. It's amazing how their cities are so populated yet still so peaceful and quiet. The Japanese people are generally very polite, humble, and welcoming and I definitely recommend visiting. I'm looking into the possibility of teaching English (maybe Chinese and instrumental music as well) there for a year. On another note, I think it's pretty awesome how I went to the Coast Guard Band concerts on a semi-regular basis and studied with some of the saxophonists in it when I was in high school and Joe D'Aleo is now a saxophonist among them. Well done!

Hartt Alumni

Alyssa Hoffert

Degree(s):

Conservatoire a Rayonnement Regional (CRR) de Boulogne-Billancourt, Paris, France, 

2015-2017

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2014

BM Saxophone Performance/Music Education, Case Western Reserve University, 2012

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Notre Dame College, Instrumental Music Adjunct Faculty; Conn-Selmer, Selmer Paris Artist, Lutheran West High School; Interim Band Director, Independence High School, Choral Director/Music Teacher; Notre Dame Indoor Winds Program, Music/Visual Staff; Shaker Heights High School, Saxophone/Woodwind Instructor

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

La’Ventus Saxophone Quartet; Peroledi Duo

Liberty Wind Symphony, principle saxophonist

Advice for Current Students:

1. Meet as many people/make as many connections with others through every opportunity as possible while you are still a student. Meaningful, genuine relationships will benefit you both personally and throughout your career. Always be kinder than necessary.

2. Knowledge of education and pedagogy will only enhance your skills as a performer – don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!

 

3. Think of yourself as a musician rather than just a saxophonist. Go outside the box and take lessons with other types of musicians, especially those with different ideas or styles of pedagogy. Do not be afraid to challenge and question your preconceived notions or information you have been previously taught. 

 

4. Redefine (and embrace) the concept of ‘failure’.  Your career and life will be filled with many ‘nos’, losses, and rejections. Do not be deterred by this; instead, analyze and take advantage of each one as the knowledge gained will be your biggest asset to ongoing personal and professional growth. 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life? Studying music/saxophone and living abroad has immensely and positively impacted my life, both as a musician and as a person. Please feel free to contact me if you are thinking of doing so and have questions/need advice!

Hartt Alumni

Alex Hornecker

Degree(s):

Acoustical Engineering & Music, The Hartt School/University of Hartford, 2010

Current Employment/Employer(s):

DataCom Design Group

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

No recent performance related opportunities, but each of my work related projects include a large degree of visual creativity finding ways to meet the acoustical criteria while still matching the architect's desired aesthetic.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Jaffe Holden Acoustics

Hartt Alumni

Li-Chun Hsaio

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone, The Hartt School, 2014

Diploma di Il livello, Saxofono, Conservatorio di Musica di Stato “N. Piccinni” di Bari, 2012

Mechanical Engineering/Psychology, National Taiwan University, 2008

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Motif Music, Shanghai, China; Private Studio Teacher, Shanghai, China

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

MIT Saxophone Ensemble, Taiwan

Advice for Current Students:

There is much more a music major can do, not only become a concert soloist or be in an orchestra or teach college. A DMA degree is NOT always necessary.

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

I am trying to be a good marching band teacher by working with some DCI staffs, at the same time, trying to think as a businessman instead of always a musician. 

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Music and Arts, East Hartford, USA

Hartt Alumni

Jeff Hullfish

Degree(s):

PhD Cognition and Neuroscience, The University of Texas at Dallas, In Progress

MSc Engineering Acoustics, Technical University of Denmark, 2015

Thesis project investigating the use of auditory brainstem responses to screen for small tumors.

BSE Acoustical Engineering & Music, The Hartt School/University of Hartford, 2013

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Awarded the first-ever Founders Distinguished Graduate Fellowship: focusing on auditory neuroscience, possibly the use of vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) therapy paired with tones as a treatment for tinnitus

Advice for Current Students:

1. Don’t be afraid to explore other ways besides performance to make a career out of music. They’re out there, I promise.

2. Never stop listening.

3. Learn a bit about how your ears and your hearing work; you can even ask me if you want!

4. …remember to use the Tuning CD.

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

I am building a career out of understanding the human relationship with sound. So far that has included the ways sound can be used in medicine to diagnose and treat disorders affecting the auditory system. One day I hope to give music back to the people who have lost it. I’m sure that what happens in between will be just as exciting.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Research Engineer @ Interacoustics Research Unit

Hartt Alumni

Sophie Kaye

Degree(s):

BSE Acoustics and Music, The Hartt School/University of Hartford, 2019

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Volpe Center for the U.S. Department of Transportation, Cambridge, MA

Hartt Alumni

Corey Killian

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2015

BM Music Education, University of Connecticut, 2013

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Suffield Middle School-Band Director; Private Saxophone Studio Instructor

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Glastonbury Public Schools

Advice for Current Students:

Keep a positive attitude, and work hard to develop professional relationships with as many people as you can.

Hartt Alumni

Ted King-Smith

Degree(s):

DMA Composition, University of Missouri – Kansas City, 2016

MA Composition, Washington State University, 2012

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2010

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Professor of Audio Engineering, Milwaukee Area Technical College

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

*I've been a freelance composer since graduating from Hartt in 2010. I've written for saxophone and wind ensemble the most, but recently have been writing for electronics, strings, and brass. Several of my works for saxophone are published by Murphy Music Press, and I've been fortunate to have earned a few awards and received performances all over the U.S. and Canada.

*Besides composing I'm active as a performer and organizer for two groups in Kansas City:

Mnemosyne Quartet (Summer 2014-present): Mnemosyne (Nem-o-zine) features myself on Alto and Bari sax as well as electronics, and three Kansas City composer/performers Russell Thorpe, Michael Miller, and Eli Hougland on saxophones, bass clarinets, and electronics. We are free-improvisation based, but also have more notated pieces as well. Performances this past year included a performance in downtown KC for the Art in the Loop street art project, a full-length concert for Kansas City Electronic Music Alliance (KcEMA) which was sponsored by New Music USA, and a collaboration with video artist Eric Southner titled Analog Drift. Upcoming performances in Kansas City include a gallery opening gala for the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art and an open studios performance for the Charlotte Street Foundation.

Fusebox New Music Collective (Fall 2014-present): Fusebox is a collective I co-founded with 

two other KC composers Scott Steele and Zane Winter with the goal of supporting new music by emerging composers in the Kansas City area. We are planning and fundraising for a performance this fall at the Prairie Logic space in downtown KC which will feature a new work of mine, Soundtrack of an Open Road for Cello and Fixed Media.

Advice for Current Students:

Listen to as much music as you can, and immerse yourself in genres/styles/artists/etc. that you're unfamiliar with. Also, feel free to explore what's being done outside of academia, as it's a whole different world with just as many opportunities.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

 Johnson County Community College; Kansas City Kansas Community College: Adjunct in Music Technology; Washington State University Business School: Tech I (2011-12); George Washington University: Classroom Technology Coordinator (2012-13)

Hartt Alumni

Harry Kliewe

Degree(s):

BM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2017

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Freelance Musician

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Resurgam Quartet

Advice for Current Students:

Make a lot of friends! Try to make friends with people from many different musical backgrounds and disciplines. They will be your future colleagues and employers.

Hartt Alumni

McCall Kochevar

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2020

BM Music Education, University of Oregon

Hartt Alumni

Mallory Kokus

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2011

BS Music Education, Penn State University, 2009

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Private lesson teacher at home studio

Freelance performer in Greater Hartford area (mostly musical theater)

And mom! 

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Middle school band/general music teacher, New London Public Schools (2012-13); middle school general music teacher, East Lyme Public Schools (2011-12) 

 

Current and/or Former Creative Projects:

I'm currently organizing a studio recital for my private students.

Advice for Current Students:

1. Go to live concerts (not just at Hartt, but in the area.) 

2. You will never have more time to practice than you do now. (True for undergrads and grads alike.) People told me this while I was a student and I didn't believe it! But it is absolutely true.  

3. As a doubler, I wish I would have taken more opportunity to talk with/play with/study with flute or clarinet players. Even just getting together to play duets a few times would be helpful. There are so many resources available to you at college that are more difficult to find when you leave. 

university of new mexico Alumni

Aaron Lovato

Degree(s):

BM Music Education, University of New Mexico, 2005

MM in Jazz Studies, University of North Texas, 2008

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Albuquerque Public Schools

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Albuquerque Jazz Orchestra

NM Philharmonic

Freelance Saxophonist 

Advice for Current Students:

 Ear training is your friend.  Accumulate as little student debt as possible.    

Former Employment/Employer(s):

NM Jazz Workshop

Hartt Alumni

Jeremy Lubsey

Degree(s):

MPT (Music Production and Technology), The Hartt School, 2006-2007

BM, Emphasis in Recording, University of Maryland Baltimore County, 2010

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Vlado Meller Mastering LLC. Charleston, SC

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Prometheus Duo (current)

Asylum Quartet (2012-2017)

Advice for Current Students:

Andrea Bocelli: Cinema (CD/DVD), Sting: The Last Ship (Vinyl), Dangermuffin: Songs For The Universe (CD)

Advice for Current Students: Fall in love with the process of becoming the best version of yourself. Hartt is an amazing resource for broadening your musical sensibilities, and it would be an egregious offense to not do everything in your power to take advantage of it while you can. There is simply too much to see, hear, and practice at Hartt . . . soak up as much of it as you can!

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

 It certainly has been a journey for me. Just when I thought I missed, or had a great opportunity slip away from me . . . another one was always around the corner waiting for me. I just had to be prepared to take it, and not afraid to just go for it. 

 

Web Site: I have a facebook page for work under the name JL Mastering

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Masterdisk NYC

Hartt Alumni

Dan Luongo

Degree(s):

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2008 

MM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2012

Current Employment/Employer(s):

West Hartford Public Schools – Wolcott Elementary School

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Two Rivers Magnet Middle School

Advice for Current Students:

 Explore as much music as possible and meet as many people as possible.

Hartt Alumni

Andrew MacRossie

Degree(s):

SM University of Michigan, In Progress

MM University of Hartford, The Hartt School 2020

BM Colorado State University, 2018

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

I am currently in a quartet made up of former Paris Conservatory and Liceu Conservatory students. We just completed a small recording project, and we are beginning our preparations for the 2021 Fischoff Chamber Competition. I am also preparing recordings for the Fernande Decruck International Competition for Saxophone. 

Advice for Current Students:

Have tangible artistic and professional goals. Form a clear image of who you want to be as an artist, and orient your practicing around that vision. Pace your work, and have a plan for how you will meet your objectives. Make as many recordings as you can during your time in school. Recordings can lead to a multitude of opportunities, and they are a great tool to assess your playing.  

Hartt Alumni

Victoria Medeiros

Degree(s):

BM Saxophone Performance/Music Education, The Hartt School 2014

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Waterbury Public Schools – Jonathan E Reed School

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

West End Blend: 10-piece funk/soul/R&B – Baritone Saxophone 

Advice for Current Students:

There is ALWAYS time. There will absolutely be moments where you are in doubt that there is not enough time to accomplish something or try something new – don't give into those feelings. Do what makes YOU happy and don't let anyone make you think that you can't do something if it doesn't coincide with your schedule. These years are for you to try anything and everything and be sure to take the risks you never thought you'd take. (And please. . . make sure to go to Paranov!)

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

So far, I have accomplished everything that I set out to do before attending Hartt. I am a full-time teacher and also teach privately, and I am performing regularly in a professional group. I also have been expanding my knowledge of fitness and have begun my journey as a lifestyle wellness coach. My goal for each day is to be the best I can be!

Hartt Alumni

Krissia Molina

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, University of Hartford, The Hartt School, 2018
BM Instrumental Music Education, California State University Long Beach, 2015

Current Employment/Employer(s):

South East High School, South Gate, California – Band Director

I teach Beginning Band, Advanced Band, Marching Band, Jazz Band, Drum line, and Color guard.

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Silent Movie Ensemble, Long Beach, CA
California Saxophone Ensemble, Long Beach, CA

JAK Trio, Hartford, CT

Advice for Current Students:

Make time for yourself! Find something you like to do outside of music and throw yourself into it, it’s easy to burn yourself out so give yourself some love and time. Plan an hour or 2 into your schedule every week if you need to, to just “do you"!

Hartt

Mark Northup

Institution Attended:

The Hartt School, 2018-2019

Degree(s):

BM Saxophone Performance, University of Northern Iowa, 2018

Current Employment/Employer(s):

United States Army Bands: 1st Infantry Division Band, Fort Riley, Kansas

Hartt Alumni

Brandon Nowakowski

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2020

BM Saxophone Performance, BS Math, UMass Amherst, 2018

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Saxophone Instructor, JC Music, Meriden, CT

Math Teacher, Pope Francis Preparatory School, Springfield, MA

Math and Science Tutor, C2 Education, Avon, CT

Hartt Alumni

Jamie (Sima) Odell

Degree(s):

MM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2017

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2008

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Cheshire Public Schools (Middle School Band and Orchestra)

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Saxophonist and Flutist at St. Aloysious Church in Plantsville

Advice for Current Students:

 Take advantage of all of the time you have to play your horn while you are in your degree program and make yourself known in the community. No gig is too small! Once you're out of your degree program and you begin teaching, or begin your career out of the performance field, the opportunities to play and practice are few and far between unless you make it a priority. This becomes more obvious when you have children!!!!

Hartt Alumni

Taryn O'Keefe

Degree(s):

MM Music Education, University of Washington, 2017

BM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2015

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Juanita High School; Wilder Elementary; Music & Arts, Seattle, WA; Ocean Professional Theatre Company, Barnegat, NJ

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Current Director of Music at the International Community School in Kirkland, WA (teaches secondary band, choir, orchestra, and K-5 general music) and General Music Teacher at Carl Sandburg Elementary School; Earned a masters degree with teaching certificate; Toured Beijing and Shanghai; Performed with the China Conservatory Saxophone Ensemble in Beijing

Alumni

Matthew Oliveira

Degree(s):

BM Music Education, Boston University, 2005

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Private lesson instructor, Austin, TX (August 2019-present)

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

·       Marching band arranging – Part-time (2003 – 2008)

·       Marching percussion ensemble arranging (2003 – 2008)

·       Self-published concert band composition Alpine Overture (2014)

·       Composed children’s musical theater shows Slam! (2012) (STOMP-style percussion theater show), mini-musical Where The Wild Things Are (2014) based on children’s book

·       Drummer, Neighborhood Watch rock cover band in Romania (2011 – 2014)

·       Saxophonist, Jazz Cube jazz quartet, Bucharest, Romania (2011 – 2014)

·       Theatrical lighting and sound designer and theater director, American Int’l School of Bucharest and Anglo-American School of Moscow (2011-2016)

·       Guest conductor, Central & Eastern European Schools Association MS & HS Music Festival Bands (2015-2019)

·       Percussionist, Cedar Park Winds community wind ensemble, Cedar Park, TX (2019-present)

Advice for Current Students:

Pay attention to everything and be kind to everyone. Learn everything you can from every professional at your university while you're there. Often in your life after university, you may find that you are the most trained/gifted/skilled musician not just in most rooms or schools that you're in, but maybe in the entire region you're in, and people will look to you to be a professional musician and artist - not "just a saxophonist" or "just a music teacher". Expand your notion of what success is and meet as many people as you can who do things differently than you. You never know where life might lead.
 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

My career has followed a very circuitous path and has taken me all over the world. At each stop, I’ve tried to learn as much as I can and contribute to my musical and school communities through my varied skill sets. I try to remain open to opportunities that incorporate my current interests and turn them into productive work that pays but is also fulfilling. Freelancing is a real challenge, but the rewards personally are immense.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

·       MS/HS Band Director, Glenwood Springs, Colorado (2005-2007)

·       Band Assistant, Choral Accompanist, New Bedford, Massachusetts (2007-2008, part-time)

·       Graduate Assistant/Master of Music studies - Conducting, University of Connecticut (2008-2009)

·       MS/HS Band Director, Wellsville, New York (2009-2011)

·       Elementary General Music Teacher/Theater Director, American International School of Bucharest, Romania (2011-2014)

·       Private lesson instructor, Bucharest, Romania (2014-2015)

·       Technical Theater Teacher, Anglo-American School of Moscow, Russia (2015-2016)

·       MS/HS Band Director, Anglo-American School of Moscow, Russia (2016-2019)

Hartt Alumni

James Pecsok

Degree(s):

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2017

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Leland & Gray Union Middle & High School, Townshend, VT; sabbatical replacement, Keene State College

Advice for Current Students:

Seek out opportunities you want. You have so many resources and opportunities available to you now. Take advantage of them.

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

To me, balance is crucial. While practicing is absolutely necessary, please don’t forget to take care of yourself. You need to be cognizant enough to understand WHY you are in the music field. Smell the roses. 

Hartt Alumni

Brittany Pisani

Degree(s):

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2012

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Locomotive Engineer employed by the Long Island Railroad 

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

 I don't play as much as I'd like to, but I play in high school and community pit orchestras when they need extra people and teach privately when students are looking for extra help. 

Advice for Current Students:

Don't be afraid to take a risk or stray from the popular opinion – it might work out for the best. Do what you think is the best choice for you. You learn a lot more in music school than 'just playing instruments'. You are extremely marketable with a music degree because of your dedication, attention to detail, logic and reasoning skills, and above all else incredible work ethic. My job required a year and a half long INTENSE training program where you needed to have the discipline to teach yourself materials around a full-time, sleep-deprived work schedule. Surprisingly, I am not the only musician in my craft. The company SEEKS musicians because of those abilities. I may not be in a musical field of work but I absolutely use my skills at work every single day. No education is wasted, ever. 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

Go New York Giants!!!

Former Employment/Employer(s):

 Bartender employed by the Long Island Railroad 

Hartt Alumni

Philip Plott

Degree(s):

BM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2015

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Freelance Musician; Store Manager at Sunglass Hut

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

I have performed in over 10 pit orchestras for 10 different musicals since graduating. I’m also currently creating my own show, and working on several projects with current Hartt grad students.

Advice for Current Students:

To performance majors – take as many music classes outside your required curriculum as you can and network, network, network. Never give up and be creative. It's a world where you have to create your own work.

Hartt Alumni

Abby Pollock

Degree(s):

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2020

Current Employment/Employer(s):

General/Instrumental Music Teacher, Provincetown, MA

Advice for Current Students:

Do your best to stay organized and on top of everything! Things are more manageable when you have a game plan. 

Hartt Alumni

Damon Postle

Degree(s):

PhD Music Education, University of Georgia, In Progress

MM Conducting, Winthrop University, 2015

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2007

Current & Former Employment/Employer(s):

Currently director of music at St. Raymond High School for Boys in the Bronx, NY, teaching banjo lessons and gigging with my Tuvan folk music band the White Road Ensemble – Ансамбль Ак Орук. Graduate Teaching Assistant at the University of Georgia, Graduate conducting assistant at Winthrop University; Music Director at Charlotte Youth Repertory Theatre; Self-employed private lesson teacher; Trinity Episcopal School; Charlotte-Mecklenburg Public Schools

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Currently, I am busy with work in NYC, dissertation writing/fieldwork and gigging with my Tuvan folk band. With the folk band, we have toured twice through the Tuvan Republic in south eastern Siberia playing at various festivals and competitions. In 2017 we won a prize at the international throat singing festival in Tuva for best new artists. Another tour and fieldwork were scheduled for 2020, but Covid19 had other plans for us! For musical and academic reasons, I am slowly learning both the Russian and Tuvan languages as well as an assortment of Tuvan folk instruments including igil, doshpuluur, duyuglar and demir xomus. Another important project to me is my international outreach work. I have taught English classes via music in both Tuva in 2017 and 2018 as well as teaching in 2019 at the Red Stone Informal School in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. Most students at the school in Mongolia were homeless and orphans. I was fortunate enough in 2016 to start and teach a band and orchestra as well as private lessons at Moi Girls' High School in Eldoret, Kenya via Skype and yearly visits to the school. I am also involved in including world music traditions in public school music education, playing bluegrass banjo and conducting musical theatre pit orchestras.

Advice for Current Students:

Take advantage of every musical opportunity that comes your way whatever it might be. Be musically adventurous and say YES to new projects that might be out of your comfort zone. Have passion for your music making, and use your musicality to do something good in the world. Finally, realize how lucky you are to be studying and performing music on a daily basis!

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

All is well with my wife and I and of course our dog. After so many years of wanting to move to NYC, we did in 2017. My wife completed her second Masters Degree (2019) in Vocal Pedagogy at Columbia University. We try to travel as much as time and money will allow and meet musicians wherever we go. This past summer of 2019 we had the opportunity to travel extensively through China, and got caught up in the airport protests in Hong Kong on the way home. I made the best of the situation and played my banjo for the protesters and passengers in the international terminal, and most folks seemed to enjoy it.

Alumni

Tim Powell

Degree(s):

DMA Saxophone Performance, University of Maryland, 2012

MM Jazz Studies, 2006

BS Music Education, Penn State University, 2003

Current Employment/Employer(s):

University of Maryland; College Park; Rowan University; Montgomery College

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Active  freelance musician in Mid-Atlantic region.

Advice for Current Students:

Play in everything you can with everyone you can. Always play your best and remember to be a good human first. You never know what opportunities can come out of every performance and/or teaching opportunity. 

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Frostburg State University

Hartt Alumni

Michael Raposo

Degree(s):

MM Woodwind Performance, New York University, 2019

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2017

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Freelance Musician

Music Teacher, The Grace Church School

Adjunct Faculty, The Hartt School 

Advice for current students:

Follow your passions and play in tune. Everyone has different motivators and that is okay. In school it is sometimes easy to try and fit in to be the perfect music student. That person does not exist. Use your time to dive into the things that really excite you and practice the hell out of them! Also, play in time and in tune because there is no other way. 

Hartt Alumni

Shane Rathburn

Degree(s):

AD Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2017

MM Saxophone Performance, Indiana University, 2015

BM Saxophone Performance, University of North Carolina School of the Arts, 2013

Current Employment/Employer(s):

The United States Army Field Band; Barkada Quartet; Private Studio Instructor

Advice for Current Students:

Don't neglect an opportunity to diversify your abilities as a musician or a human being.

Hartt Alumni

Ian Robinson

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, Penn State University, 2019

BM Saxophone Performance/Music Education, The Hartt School, 2015

Current Employment/Employer(s):

                 DailyPay

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Long Island Wind Ensemble

Advice for Current Students:

“Do or do not. There is no try.” – Yoda

Former Employment/Employer(s):

tonebase, inc. (Frontend Developer)

Ledyard Public Schools – Elementary Instrumental Music Teacher; Mamaroneck Public Schools – Elementary Instrumental Music teacher

Hartt Alumni

Elizabeth (Hanson) Rosinbum

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, Arizona State University, 2012
BM Saxophone Performance, UMass Amherst, 2010

(Began at Boston University, transferred to UMass Amherst)

Current Employment/Employer(s):

D'Addario & Company (clinician), Leander Independent School District (lead saxophone instructor), Concordia University Texas (adjunct professor of saxophone)

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

University of Texas Longhorn Saxophone Camp instructor; Saxophone Academy Austin summer camp instructor; professional development lecturer; board member of Austin Saxophone Ensemble; authored D'Addario Woodwinds's "Saxophone Survival Guide"; performed in Austin Symphonic Band (including as a featured soloist); third place winner, Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) Young Artists Woodwind Competition; Universite Europeene de Saxophone Institute (summers of 2009, 10, 11)

Advice for Current Students:

 This is the most time you will EVER have to practice; use it well. In addition to honing your craft in the practice room, be deliberate in surrounding yourself with positive influences from other studios with diverse interests. Especially while in school, it's easy to be single-minded and have your self worth be completely based on your ability to play your instrument. Learn and grow as much as you can during this time, knowing that you are far more than your musicianship or skill on any given day.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Austin Independent School District (private instructor), Tempe Preparatory Academy (wind ensemble director), Arts Academy at Scottsdale (K-4 music teacher)

Hartt Alumni

Perry Roth

Degree(s):

DMA saxophone performance, music history minor, The Hartt School, 2020 

MM saxophone performance, Louisiana State University, 2016

BM music education, music performance certificate, University of South Carolina, 2013

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Kent State University, Adjunct Instructor of Saxophone 

Music in Schools Initiative, Yale School of Music, Saxophone Teaching Artist

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Barkada Quartet, tenor saxophone chair; Research on saxophone music from the Holocaust

Advice for Current Students:

Trust the process.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

University of Massachusetts-Amherst, Adjunct Instructor; The Hartt School, Adjunct Instructor; The Hartt School Community Division, Instructor of Saxophone; LSU Performing Arts Academy, Saxophone Instructor 

Alumni

Jon Sawyer

Degree(s):

Non-traditional educational path. As a high school student, I studied the saxophone with Carrie Koffman between the years of 1995 - 1998, and as a Music Education student at the University of New Mexico in 2000-2001. While I live and work in Colorado, I am an adult learner remotely pursuing the completion of a BAAS with concentrations in history and philosophy, with a music minor at the University of North Texas - where I was previously working toward a BM in Saxophone Performance (2010 - 2013).

Current Employment/Employer(s):

The University of Colorado Boulder-Office of Admissions (2014 - present). Admissions Service Center Supervisor, managing a team of 25 work-study students who assist in CU Boulder's recruitment efforts. 

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

I am not currently performing or teaching private lessons, but the following are a few highlights of my music education and performance opportunities over the years: Winner of the University of New Mexico Concerto Competition (2000-2001); Saxophone Soloist with the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra (2001); Finalist in the University of North Texas Concerto Competition (2013); Master Class Performances with Jean-Marie Londeix (2001), and Christopher Creviston, Clifford Leaman, Dan Goble, and Anna Marie Wytko (2010 - 2013); Guest Artist with the Albuquerque Concert Band (2014); Section Coordinator and Saxophonist with the University of North Texas Wind Symphony (2011 - 2013); Saxophone Soloist with the University of North Texas Symphony Orchestra and UNT Concert Orchestra (2010-2013); Saxophone Substitute with the Lone Star Wind Orchestra (2012-2013)

Advice for Current Students:

My advice for current students would echo the advice that I would offer my younger self. If I had the opportunity to wind my way back through the circuitous educational and vocational path that I have taken - looking the passionate and idealistic young man with sandy blonde hair into his bright hazel eyes, I would gently offer this advice: 


"You won't always have stellar performances or grades. You won't always win competitions or jobs. You won't always get pats on the back, nor will your work always be recognized. That's okay, because you are okay just as you are in this moment. Learn from your mistakes, but don't apologize for making them. Look for opportunities to enjoy the life you are experiencing right now - even the difficult parts. There is beauty to be found and gratitude to be cultivated in both the peaks and the valleys. Be ambitious and have goals - but keep in mind that goals can actually be thwarted when you are convinced that satisfaction and contentment are entirely dependent upon reaching them. Challenge your thoughts and embrace your emotions as valid, yet impermanent experiences of being human. Not every story that tickers through your mind is true, and the strong emotions of happiness and joy, sorrow and despair, indifference and numbness, are transitory. Be kind to yourself." 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

My life has been greatly enriched through my study and performance of music, especially through the teaching and friendship of Carrie Koffman.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Hotel Management (2002 - 2010), Starwood Hotels and Resorts (Westin); Saxophone Instructor, The Independent School Districts of Frisco, Denton, and Celina, TX (2010 - 2013)

Hartt Alumni

Max Schwimmer

Degree(s):

BM Saxophone Performance, Arizona State University, 2011

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2013

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Asylum Saxophone Quartet; Saxophone Instructor at Music and Arts East Hartford and Manchester Community College; member of Asylum Quartet; Communications and Development Associate with Curiosity Concerts (Greenwich); Youth Programs Professional and Educator at Congregation Beth Israel (West Hartford)

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Founding Member of Asylum Quartet (performed over 150 concerts in our first three seasons), duo with organist/pianist Natasha Ulyanovsky

Hartt Alumni

Fabian Shafer

Degree(s):

Year Abroad Exchange Program, The Hartt School, 2006-2007

Hochschule fur Musik und Darstellende Kunst Mannheim, 2010

English Studies, University of Mannheim

penn state university Alumni

Matthew Sisia

Degree(s):

MM Wind Conducting, Penn State University, 2003

BM Music Education, SUNY Potsdam Crane School of Music, 2001

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Director of Bands, Oyster Bay High School 

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Collaborations with composers Samuel Adler, Frank Ticheli, Thomas Duffy, Shelley Hanson, Michael Colgrass, Timothy Broege, Rossano Galante, Paul Moravec, and Joel Puckett. Two performances at Carnegie Hall (2010, 2014). Rehearsal with Case Scaglione, assistant conductor of the NY Philharmonic. Vice President of the New York State Band Directors Association. Adjunct faculty member at Long Island University.

Hartt Alumni

Kindall Smith

Degree(s):

MM Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2011

BM Music Education/Performance Certificate in Saxophone, University of South Carolina, 2009

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Band Director, DuBose Middle School

Assistant Band Director, Summerville High School

Private Saxophone Studio Instructor

Freelance Professional Saxophonist

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

SC Summer Saxophone Camp

Lowcountry Saxophone Choir

Charleston Wind Symphony

Saxophonist with Kammermusik Chamber Music Series

Private Studio Recitals

Advice for Current Students:

1.Listen to Professor Koffman. Work hard. Don’t make excuses. Take care of yourself (not just physically, but mentally as well). Practice. Practice some more. Oh, did I mention practice? BE POSITIVE… It really is that simple, but so many try to make it more complicated and instead waste time on things outside of this. Don’t be one of those people.

 2. In the chaos of college and graduate school it often feels like you are drowning in deadlines, studying, practicing, rehearsals and often feel that it is nearly impossible keep your head above water, but this is such a short period of time in the grand scheme of life. You CAN and WILL make it through. This time will go by quicker than you realize and you will look back wishing you would have taken even more opportunities to advance yourself as a musician and human being during this critical time. There is always another opportunity to advance yourself personally, professionally and musically… don’t take it for granted! Be ruthless in your efforts to obtain as much knowledge as possible NOW. Knowledge is power. Once you get out into the real world you will yearn for the time and opportunity to do these things… Balance and time-management will always be a never-ending battle.

 

3. Let’s just make this clear… Those of you who think you will “never teach” and that “music education is just for those people who can’t play their horns” are sadly mistaken… learn how to teach or you’re in the wrong profession.

 

4. Many of you will expect to graduate and get the “perfect job/performing opportunities” as soon as you are done with your degree all because “you have a performance and/or music education degree from the Hartt School!” Sorry, that rarely ever happens and you are naive. (I say this out of love of course!) Life is going to have to chew you up and spit you out a little bit first, but it will ALL be worth it. You will probably have several jobs that you absolutely hate and feel like you’re selling your soul to. That is OK. It will make you a better teacher and musician in the long run! 

 

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

I knew upon graduation that I wanted a healthy mix of teaching and performing for the rest of my life, but didn’t know exactly how I was going to achieve that initially. It has taken me FIVE years after graduation from my Masters Degree at Hartt to feel like I’m finally getting in the ballpark of where I want to be both professionally and personally…I have just recently achieved a healthy balance between teaching 300 kids in public school, performing with several professional ensembles, running my private studio, practicing, maintaining a household, exercising, taking care of/spending time with my family, reading books, breathing, etc. Yes, I am making a living doing what I love, but remember that it was not handed to me!

Hartt Alumni

Anthony Speranza

Degree(s):

GPD Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2012

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2010

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Co-Founder/Alto Saxophonist, Asylum Quartet, 2013-Present

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

I am currently performing up to 50 concerts per year with the Asylum Quartet.

Hartt Alumni

Nick Statzer

Degree(s):

DMA Saxophone Performance, Louisiana State University, In Progress

MM Saxophone Performance, University of North Carolina School of the Arts, 2012

BM Saxophone Peformance, The Hartt School, 2010

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Volunteer at Slippery Rock University. Private instruction and quartet coaching.

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Aidai Saxophone Quartet at UNCSA; 3rd Prize 2012 NASA Quartet Competition

Advice for Current Students:

Make your own luck.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Student at Louisiana State University, DMA Performance

Hartt Alumni

Kevin Stickle

Degree(s):

MM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2013

BM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2005

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Groton Public Schools, Elementary Orchestra Teacher

Hartt Alumni

NICOLE (KONJEVODA) STICKLE

Degree(s):

MM Music Education, The Hartt School, 2013

BM Saxophone Performance/Music Education, The Hartt School, 2006

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Manchester Public Schools, Elementary Band Teacher

Hartt Alumni

Andrew Studenski

Degree(s):

BM Saxophone Performance/Music Education, The Hartt School, 2013

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Hartt School Community Division

Avon Old Farms School

Self-employed freelance musician

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

I play professionally, on an average of 5-8 times a week, with various organizations. The groups with which I play are typically in the categories of classical, latin, jazz, and contemporary music. I work the most for musical theater productions, where I am asked to play on all the saxophones, piccolo, flute, clarinet, and bass clarinet. This season, I am coming up on my 50th professional musical theater engagement since I started gigging in 2008. In CT, I have worked (and continue to do so) at The Broadbrook Opera House, The Ivoryton Playhouse, Playhouse on Park, the Goodspeed Opera House, Goodspeed's Norma Terris Theater, the Schubert Theater in New Haven, and the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts. In addition to this work, I have appeared as a saxophonist with the Hartford Symphony Orchestra, and played on saxophone/bass clarinet for the New Haven Symphony. 

Advice for Current Students:

At some point in your performing career, you will be asked to teach. This is an absolute guarantee. It may take the form of an outreach concert, masterclass, private instruction, or even coaching a chamber ensemble. What you say and do in your teaching experience, no matter how obvious, banal, or dismissable it may seem to you, can alter the life of someone else sitting in that room. When it happens, be sure you've changed that student's life for the better. Being a good player is not enough; take every opportunity you have to become a better teacher. And . . . tuning CD. Lots of it.

Anything else you want to add regarding your current life?

I am living the life I have always wanted to live!

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Music and Arts

Hartt pre-college division Alumni

Jane Sylvester

Degree(s):

Hartt Pre-College Division, 2010

BM Michigan State University, Saxophone Performance and Music Education, 2014

MA Eastman School of Music, Musicology, 2017

PhD Musicology, Eastman School of Music, expected 2021

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Dissertation Research Fellow, American Council for European Studies; freelance saxophone instructor

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

I am currently working on publishing two articles based on my research on late nineteenth-century Italian realist opera.

Advice for Current Students:

 Find time every day for two things: long tones and joyful movement.

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Graduate Instructor and Student, Eastman School of Music

Hartt Alumni

Sean Tanguay

Degree(s):

BM Saxophone Performance/Music Production and Technology, The Hartt School, 2016

Current Employment/Employer(s):

Yale University (Recording Engineer), Trinity College (Visiting Lecturer in Music, Teach “Introduction to the Recording Arts", and "Advanced Recording Arts”)

Current and/or Former Creative Projects/Performance Opportunities:

Resurgam Quartet

Advice for Current Students:

Take advantage of every opportunity. Go to concerts and listen to as much music as you can. Also, meet people and make as many friends as possible, they will become important contacts and good friends to have after you graduate.

Hartt Alumni

Joshua Thomas

Degree(s):

DMA Saxophone Performance, The Hartt School, 2016

MA Music Theory, Connecticut College, 2007

MM Saxophone Performance, Louisiana State University, 2001

BME, Michigan State University, 1998

Current Employment/Employer(s):

United States Coast Guard Band, Senior Chief Musician (E-8). I’ve been a member of this organization since 2000.

Teaching: Connecticut College since 2013; Eastern Connecticut State University since 2017; Private lessons through Thames Valley Music School off and on for 17 years

Former Employment/Employer(s):

Adjunct a