Dr. John Oelrich joined the faculty of The University of Tennessee at Martin (UTM) Department of Music in 2012 as Director of Bands. His primary responsibilities include conducting the Wind Ensemble, teaching instrumental conducting, instrumental methods, supervising student teachers, and the oversight and continued development of the university bands. In addition to his teaching duties, John is highly active in the area of recruiting and outreach, visiting and working with approximately thirty schools each year.
Under John’s direction, the UT Martin Wind Ensemble was invited to perform a feature concert for the Tennessee Music Education Association’s 2015 State Conference. The Wind Ensemble has been active in commissioning and premiering new works for wind band, including pieces by composers Viet Cuong, Steven Danyew, Adam Gorb, Derek Jenkins, Kenyon Wilson, Stephen Barr, and Ivan Trevino.
John’s recent engagements as a guest conductor and clinician include the UT Martin Honor Band Festival, Robertson County Honor Band, Gateway Music Association Honor Band, Kentucky All-District #1 Middle School Honor Band, Tennessee Mid-State 9-10 Gold Band, Tennessee All-West Middle School Blue Band, and the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association All-State Concert Band. Active as a trumpeter, John regularly performs with the UTM Faculty Brass Quintet, substitutes with the Paducah Symphony Orchestra, and teaches a small studio of high school students.
In the summer of 2018, John led a travel study to Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic to research and perform Classical period chamber wind works, including performances at Esterházy Palace in Eisenstadt, Austria and Emauzy Monastery, in Prague, Czech Republic.
In addition to his work on campus, John is also highly engaged in community service. In the summer of 2013, he founded the Martin Community Band, the first standing community band in the city since 1915. The ensemble performs 4-5 concerts each summer season and regularly involves more than 100 musicians. In addition, he founded, and leads the jazz band for, the After-School Arts Program, an arts-centered after school program for the county’s middle school students.
Prior to his appointment at UT-Martin, John was the Doctoral Conducting Associate at The Ohio State University. He taught at Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa for several years, including seven years as an adjunct and one year full-time as Interim Director of Instrumental Music. Prior to his time at Loras, Oelrich spent ten years teaching middle school and high school band in Iowa and Wisconsin.
After growing up on a dairy farm near Spencer, Wisconsin, John earned his Bachelor of Science in Instrumental and Vocal Music Education from the University of Wisconsin – Platteville, a Master of Music degree from the University of Northern Iowa and a Doctor of Musical Arts in Conducting from The Ohio State University. When not involved in music or teaching related activities, John enjoys spending time with his family, reading, hiking, motorcycling and amateur astronomy. He and his family reside in Martin, TN.
Gary Lewis is the Director of Orchestral Studies and the Bob and Judy Charles Professor of Conducting in the College of Music at the University of Colorado Boulder where he conducts the University Symphony Orchestra and oversees the entire orchestra program. He also serves as Music Director and Conductor of the Midland-Odessa (TX) Symphony Orchestra, Principal Guest Conductor of the Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra, and as Conductor of the Greater Boulder Youth Symphony Orchestra.
At CU Boulder Mr. Lewis also leads the graduate program in orchestral conducting, including both the masters and doctoral level. His former students are currently enjoying success as conductors with major professional orchestras and opera companies, university and public school ensembles, and youth orchestras.
Prior to his appointment at Colorado, Lewis served on the faculties of Texas Tech University, The Ohio State University, The University of Michigan, and Abilene Christian University. He is equally at home with professional, university, and youth ensembles. In addition to his regular conducting posts, he has appeared with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, the Colorado Music Festival, Boulder Ballet, Midland Ballet Theater, Ballet Lubbock, the Lubbock Symphony Orchestra, the Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra, the Quad Cities Symphony Orchestra, the New Symphony Orchestra (Sofia, Bulgaria), and the Western Plains Opera Theater. His work with summer music festivals has also been noteworthy including the Interlochen Center for the Arts, Pine Mountain Music Festival (opera and symphonic) and the Rocky Ridge Music Center.
As a strong advocate of music education, Mr. Lewis has presented many in-service workshops for public school educators, as well as numerous presentations at state and regional music education association conferences. In addition, he has conducted All-State Orchestras and Bands in many states along with the ASTA National Honor Orchestra and the Honor Orchestra of America. In 2010 Mr. Lewis became the founding Artistic Director of the Greater Boulder Youth Orchestras and continues to serve as conductor of the Symphony Orchestra.
Mr. Lewis is also a strong proponent of new music. He has been instrumental in the development and production of contemporary music festivals and his interest in new music has led him to collaborations with composers such as Dan Kellogg, Carter Pann, George Crumb, William Bolcom, John Harbison, Chen Yi, Michael Daugherty, Stephen Paulus, Oscar Navarro, Jeffrey Nytch, and many others.
Gary Lewis is a Yamaha Master Educator.
Before taking over as Coordinator of Jazz Studies at Northern Illinois University in the fall of 2014, Reginald Thomas spent 3 years as professor of jazz at Michigan State University and 20 years as professor of music at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. Reggie remains active with some of the top institutions in jazz and music education including Weill Music Institute at Carnegie Hall (working with the NYO Jazz program and teaching for their Summer Music Educators Workshops), Jazz at Lincoln Center (worked with the Essentially Ellington Program and Band Director Academy) and the Thelonious Monk Institue of Jazz (serving as accompanist for the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competitions). Thomas has done residencies and summer teaching across the country and abroad including the New York Jazz Symposium at Snow College; the Birch Creek Music Center; the Jazz Music Institute in Brisbane, Australia; the IAJE Teacher Training Institute; the Summer Jazz Academy in Chodziez, Poland and the Barbican Center in London. He remains an active clinician/adjudicator at colleges and festivals throughout the country including the Next Generation Jazz Festival (presented by the Monterey Jazz Festival) and Essentially Ellington (regional and national competition). Thomas has directed All State Jazz Bands, Combos and Jazz Choirs in Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, South Dakota and Tennessee and directed the first ever Missouri All-College Jazz Band.
As a performer Reggie can be seen fronting his own groups (Mardra/Reggie Thomas Ensemble; OGD) on both piano and Hammond organ. He also spent time as pianist for the Legendary Count Basie Orchestra. Thomas has performed across the US in cities including Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and St. Louis and abroad in Brisbane, Calgary, London, Milan, Montreal, Poznan, Senegal, Sydney, Toronto, Trinidad and Warsaw. Thomas’ newest recording (with wife Mardra), Matters of the Heart, was released March 2015 and follows previous recordings Fade to Blue (MaxJazz), Standard Time (Victoria) and 4 (Jazz Compass). Other recordings include work with Clay Jenkins, Kim Richmond, Clark Terry/Mike Vax and the MSU Professors of Jazz. Reggie has been awarded the Excellence in the Arts award from the Greater St. Louis Arts and Education Council and was named in Riverfront Times “Best of St. Louis” as Best Jazz Artist.
Angela Broeker is Director of Choral Activities at the University of St. Thomas where she conducts the Chamber Singers, Concert Choir, and Festival Choir and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in choral conducting, choral literature and choral pedagogy. Since arriving at the University of St. Thomas in 1999, Dr. Broeker’s choirs have performed at national, regional, and state conventions of the American Choral Director’s Association and have toured extensively in Asia, Europe and South America.
In addition to her university responsibilities, Dr. Broeker presents for national, regional, and state conventions of the American Choral Directors Association, the National Association for Music Education, the Organization of American Kodály Educators, and the American Orff-Schulwerk Association. She serves as guest conductor for numerous honor choirs including the ACDA National Children’s Honor Choir in 2015, honor choirs at the Eastern, Southern, Southwest, North Central, Northwest and Central Division ACDA regional conferences, National Honor Choirs at numerous OAKE conferences, and all-state choirs in more than 30 states. International conducting engagements include honor choirs in Beijing, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Seoul, Qingdao, Nanjing, Guangzhou and Dubai.
Dr. Broeker received her D.M.A. degree from the University of Oklahoma and her M.M. and B.M.E. degrees from Indiana University. Her research interests include authentic, respectful performance of music from diverse cultures as well as the exploration of varied vocal colors that are possible with this repertoire. Recently, she presented keynote speeches around the themes of community and inclusion within the choral experience and is serving on the National ACDA Committee for Diversity Initiatives and the ACDA-MN 20/20 committee. She served as guest editor of the April 2006 Choral Journal and has written articles for the Choral Journal in 2017, 2011, 2008, and 2006. Other publications include the July 2000 Music Educators Journal, the NAfME Spotlight on Teaching Chorus, as well as many local and regional music publications. The book she coauthored with Mary Goetze and Ruth Boshkoff, Educating Young Singers, is published with GIA.
Director of Choral Activities at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, Dr. Zachary Durlam leads multiple choirs and teaches graduate and undergraduate conducting and choral literature. He previously taught at Fresno Pacific University where his Concert Choir performed at the California Music Educators Association (CMEA) Conference and he was awarded the university’s 2013 Faculty Distinguished Service Award. Prior to that, Durlam taught high school vocal music for twelve years – including nine at Iowa City West High where his Chamber Choir was chosen to perform at the 2006 North Central American Choral Directors Association (NCACDA) convention and the music department was one of seven programs in the nation named a Gold Signature School by the Grammy Foundation. Durlam received his bachelor’s degree from Luther College, master’s from the University of Iowa, and doctorate from Michigan State University. He frequently works as a guest conductor and clinician, including recent appearances conducting choral festivals in California, Oregon, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Iowa, and presentations at the NCACDA, WCDA, WMEA, ILMEA, and CMEA conferences. The UWM Concert Chorale under his direction performed with the Rolling Stones at Milwaukee’s 2015 Summerfest, and they were chosen by audition to perform at the 2016 Wisconsin Music Educators Association (WMEA) and 2017 Wisconsin Choral Directors Association (WCDA) conferences. Durlam was previously the Men’s Choirs Repertoire & Standards Chair for the Iowa Choral Directors Association and currently serves as editor of the WCDA state newsletter The Voice of WCDA. His research on Handel and Mendelssohn is published in the Choral Journal.