Marika Galea

Vice Chair, Instrumental Jazz

Marika Galea is an award-winning performer, composer, and professor of jazz and contemporary popular music at Brandon University. Best known as a bassist, she earned a spot as one of CBC Music’s 2017 35 best Canadian jazz artists under 35. Galea’s music explores the space between improvised jazz, narrative songwriting, and hypnotic soundscapes. Her collaborations have garnered nominations and wins for JUNO, Golden Globe, Academy, Polaris, Iris, RIDM and HotDocs Awards. Galea studied at the University of Toronto and Berklee College of Music on full scholarship, completing a degree in performance and composition with a minor in contemporary conducting. She went on to complete her master’s degree at McGill University.  Galea has taught at McGill University, McGill Conservatory, Berklee College of Music, Malta Jazz Festival, Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival, Prince Edward County Jazz Festival, Eckhardt-Gramatté Conservatory, L’école de jazz de Montréal and the University of Manitoba’s Canadian Jazz Summit.

Amely Zhou

Amely Zhou is an erhu performer, a Chinese music specialist, an adjudicator and a conductor. In 2014, Amely graduated from York University with a Specialized Honours B.A. in music. Amely’s music has been featured on TVO, Fairchild TV and CNTV. Amely is currently the music director of the Canadian Chinese Orchestra. Under her direction, the orchestra has toured in China and performed at the Markham Flato Theatre, the Sony Centre, and the Mississauga Living Art Centre. In 2020, she led a group of multi-ethnic ensemble Estro-genesis and performed a series of Canadian works for the Toronto Music Garden’s summer music program.


Learn more about Amely at Amely Zhou

Dr. LaToya Webb

Dr. LaToya Webb is an assistant professor of Music and Director of the Laurier Wind Orchestra. Before joining the Laurier Faculty of Music, she served as an assistant professor of Practice in Conducting, assistant director of Bands at the University of Texas at Austin, and instructor of Wind Conducting at Auburn and Grambling State University.  She holds degrees from Norfolk State University, George Mason University, and Auburn University.  As a passionate advocate for improving educational opportunities through diversity, equity, inclusion, and access, LaToya serves on the Composer Project Advisory Board and as the Special Projects Manager for United Sound, Inc. This organization strives to remove barriers and foster social change through music. She is also the Co-founder of I See You: Affirming Representation in Music, an organization aimed to affirm Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) in all fields of music.

Learn more about LaToya at LaToya Webb

Heather Macdonald

Heather Macdonald is a sought-after orchestral and chamber musician in the Toronto area. She currently acts as a coach to the Contemporary Music Ensemble at the University of Toronto (U of T), and as part of the ensemble-in-residence for U of T’s composition seminar. She has performed with orchestras across North America, including the Colorado Symphony, Boulder Philharmonic, Cheyenne Symphony, and numerous orchestras across Ontario. She is on faculty at McMaster University’s School of the Arts, where she teaches oboe lessons. She also leads studio classes and teaches lessons as a teaching assistant in the oboe studio at U of T.  She holds a Master of Music from the University of Colorado, an Artist Diploma from the Glenn Gould School in Toronto, and a Bachelor of Music from the University of Ottawa. She is currently working towards the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University of Toronto.

Learn more about Heather at Heather Macdonald

Heather is sponsored by McMaster University

Robert Miller

Robert Miller has established himself as one of Canada’s leading euphonium soloists, and has held positions as Principal Euphonium and soloist with many of Canada’s finest brass ensembles. Currently the Solo Euphonium with Canada’s premier professional brass band, the Hannaford Street Silver Band, Mr. Miller is also Principal Euphonium of the Salvation Army Mississauga Temple Band, and the Weston Silver Band, of which he is Associate Conductor. He has maintained a busy private euphonium studio for many years, and is honoured to have been a member of the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music as Euphonium Instructor since 2007.

Learn more about Robert at Robert Miller

Robert is sponsored by Yamaha Canada

Zoltan Kalman

Zoltan Kalman was born in Hungary. He received his training at the prestigious Franz Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest and obtained his Masters in Clarinet Performance and Chamber Music. Before his arrival to Canada, he served as principal clarinet with the Hungarian Opera House in Budapest.
Mr. Kalman is principal clarinetist with both, the Niagara Symphony and  Burlington Symphony, and appears regularly with the Southern Ontario Lyric Opera Company. He is currently the clarinet, saxophone and chamber music instructor at McMaster University in Hamilton, and conductor of the University Wind Ensemble at Brock University in St. Catharines, where he teaches clarinet, saxophone, and Woodwind Techniques.

Learn more about Zoltan at Zoltan Kalman

Zoltan is sponsored by McMaster University

Alba Chen

Alba Chen graduated from Shanghai Conservatory of Music with a Bachelor of Music Education and received a Master Degree in Choral Conducting from Memorial University. She was recently accepted into University of Toronto’s Doctorate of Musical Arts program. She is the musical director at Nomad Stages in Stephenville, Newfoundland, where she won Best Choir at the Stephenville Rotary Music Festival and is a guest conductor for The Atlantic Boy Choir.  In addition to her extensive choir conducting experiences, she has worked as an improvisation actress, film producer and director for 5 years. She was one of the first members in the professional Chinese improv team under KaiXin MaHua.

Cathrie Yuen

Cathrie Yuen is a Vancouver based choral conductor who serves as the the Associate Conductor of the Vancouver Bach Symphonic Choir and the Cantabile Choir, and is a Sessional Instructor at the Trinity Western University music department, and the Artistic Director of the MGV Lyra men’s choir. She was selected as a Conducting Fellow for the Vancouver Chamber Choir’s Conducting Symposium and was also among the finalists at the 2019 World Choral Conducting Competition. Cathrie holds a Master’s Degree in Choral Conducting from the University of British Columbia and obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Music from Trinity Western University.

Learn more about Cathrie at Cathrie Yuen

Dr. Pingyi Song

Dr. Pingyi Song is the Director of Choral Activities, and Assistant Professor at Coker University, South Carolina. Her most recent research study “Gender Issues and A Brief Introduction of Choral Literature by Eastern Asian Female Composers” was invited to present at the 2023 National ACDA (American Choral Directors Association) Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio, and the 2023 ACMI (Asian Classical Music Initiative) International Conference at Rutgers University, New Jersey. Pingyi Song holds a Choral Summer School Certificate from Oxford University, U.K., a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Choral Conducting and a Post-Bachelorette Certificate in Music Education from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro, and Master and Bachelor degrees from West Virginia University, Mansfield University of Pennsylvania, and Guangzhou University, China.

Learn more about Pingyi at Dr. Pingyi Song

Megan Collings

Megan Collings teaches music at Central Peel Secondary School in Brampton, Ontario where she is the head of the Arts Department and responsible for the Regional Strings program. She is the Executive Director of the Ontario Vocal Festival and a Regional Coordinator for the Concert and Chamber Festival West.  Megan believes that music can create an equitable, inclusive and diverse community where student ownership can lead to student empowerment.

Gordon Cleland

Principal cellist of the Niagara Symphony Orchestra, Gordon Cleland has performed across North America. He teaches cello at Brock University and is an instructor with Suzuki Niagara and the Niagara Youth Orchestra.  Gordon has adjudicated music festivals across Canada and runs a private studio in the Niagara region. Gordon earned a Master of Music degree from Boston University.

Learn more about Gordon at Gordon Cleland

Darryl Ferguson

Co-Director, Canadian Honour Band Project

Darryl Ferguson received a Bachelor of Music (Applied Trumpet) from Brandon University, a Master’s of Music (Trumpet Performance) from the University of South Florida, and a Bachelor of Education (After Degree) from the University of Manitoba. He currently teaches at Acadia Junior High School in Winnipeg, MB, where he directs four concert bands and a jazz ensemble.  In 2021, Darryl was awarded the Manitoba Band Association’s Award of Distinction in recognition of his outstanding contribution to music education in Manitoba. In 2018, Darryl was awarded the Fort Richmond MLA Community Hero Certificate for his service in the community. Darryl is involved in many Manitoba Band Association  initiatives, including serving as the MBA representative for the Tempo Music Conference, chairperson for the Manitoba provincial Junior and Intermediate Honour Bands, chairperson for the MBA Jazz Festival, and co-chair of the MBA’s Solo Challenge.

​Learn more about Darryl at Darryl Ferguson

Cheryl Ferguson

Co-Director, Canadian Honour Band Project


Cheryl Ferguson received a Bachelor of Arts in Music Performance (French horn) and a Bachelor of Science in Music Education from the University of Mary (Bismarck, ND).  She has also done graduate work at Southern Oregon University, and has earned a Master in Curriculum Studies (Music Education) at Acadia University (Nova Scotia).  Cheryl has taught music at every level, including K-6 general music classes, ten years running junior high band programs, and has been in her current position as Director of Bands at Fort Richmond Collegiate since 2006.  Cheryl is also the Director of Concert Band at Canadian Mennonite University.  In 2013, Cheryl received the Manitoba Band Association Award of Distinction recognizing an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to music education in Manitoba.  In 2014, she received the I. Keith Mann Outstanding Band Director Award. Cheryl was also awarded the Community Hero Award from the Manitoba Legislative Assembly in 2018.

Learn more about Cheryl at Cheryl Ferguson

Waleed Abdulhamid

Waleed Abdulhamid is a Canadian multi-instrumentalist, composer, vocalist, music and film producer, and is known for his striking vocals, innovative bass technique, and his speed and precision on percussion. He has been an active member of the Toronto music scene since his arrival from Sudan in 1992, and is the recipient of the Canadian New Pioneer Award, African Tama Award, Reel World Film Festival Award, Canadian Film Board of Excellence Award, and twice the DORA Award. He demonstrates his versatility playing 20 instruments: guitar; bass; drums; flute; harmonica; kirin; bass kirin; darabhuka; marimba; balimbo; congas; bongos; djembe; dumbek; aghera; tambour; cajun; denger; ekaa; tama. Waleed is currently a faculty member in
the music department of the University of Toronto. Formerly, he worked for twenty years as a professor in the Music Degree Program at Humber College.

Learn more about Waleed at Waleed Abudulhamid

Rosalind Zhang

Toronto-native Rosalind Zhang is a multi-instrumentalist, educator, and performer who credits her colourful experiences to her artistic upbringing. She spent her formative years immersed in a fast-paced curriculum that strived for both artistic and academic excellence at the Claude Watson School for the Arts, where she received additional training in acting, improvisation, movement, visual arts, creativity, and dance.  She obtained certification as an Associate of the Royal Conservatory in Toronto in Piano Performance before she officially accepted her admission to the University of Toronto Faculty of Music, majoring in cello alone. After receiving her Bachelor degree and an Advanced Certificate in Performance, she moved to New York and continued her cello studies at the Manhattan School of Music.

Learn more about Rosalind at Rosalind Zhang

Andrew Harris

Andrew Harris is Principal Timpani & Percussion with the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra and has performed regularly with the National Arts Centre Orchestra and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. He has performed with ensembles including Ottawa Choral Society, Thirteen Strings Chamber Orchestra, Touring Broadway Productions, and the Central Band of the Canadian Armed Forces. Andrew is Coordinator of the Percussion Sector at the University of Ottawa where he gives lessons and directs the percussion ensemble. He has been the percussion coach for the Ottawa Youth and Junior Youth Orchestras and frequently runs high school masterclasses and coaching sessions.

Learn more about Andrew at Andrew Harris

Andrew is sponsored by the University of Ottawa

Chris Lee

A native of Toronto, Chris began playing tuba at the age of twelve at Winona Drive Senior Public School and instantly discovered a passion for performing.  After graduating from the Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan, Chris’ formal education included studies at McGill, the Montreal Conservatoire and Indiana University. Chris’ professional orchestral tuba career began overseas in Spain, performing as Principal Tuba with the Orquesta Sinfonica de Galicia for 2 seasons from 2001 to 2003 before returning to Canada to take up the same position with the Winnipeg Symphony in 2003.  Chris served as Principal Tuba with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra for 15 seasons from 2003 until 2018, when he started as Principal Tuba with the National Arts Centre Orchestra.

Learn more about Chris at Chris Lee

Chris is sponsored by the University of Ottawa

Doug Burden

Douglas Burden has been the Bass Trombonist of the National Arts Centre Orchestra since 1972. He has taught at the University of Ottawa since 1975. He was the bass trombone instructor at the McGill Faculty of Music in Montréal for six years from 2001 to 2007. For a period of five years from 1987 to 1992, he travelled weekly to Kingston and taught at Queen’s University. He was also a member of the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra for seventeen years from 1975 to1992.

Learn more about Douglas at Douglas Burden

Douglas is sponsored by the University of Ottawa

Steven van Gulik

Ottawa trumpeter Steven van Gulik joined the National Arts Centre Orchestra in 2009. He began learning the cornet at age eight with his uncle Kenneth Moore and performed in the local Salvation Army church. An active chamber musician, he performs annually at the Ottawa Chamber Music Festival and regularly joins Ottawa’s Capital BrassWorks brass ensemble. Steven van Gulik has been principal trumpet of the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra. He has performed as a soloist with this orchestra, as well as with the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra and the National Arts Centre Orchestra.

Learn more about Steven at Steven van Gulik

Steven is sponsored by the University of Ottawa

Lawrence Vine

Principal Horn with the National Arts Centre Orchestra since 2002, Lawrence Vine has also served as Principal Horn with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, and the Manitoba Chamber Orchestra. He regularly performs at home and on tour with the National Arts Centre Wind Quintet, a highly acclaimed ensemble that has recorded for the Naxos label. As a soloist, he has appeared with the National Arts Centre Orchestra, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, and Ottawa’s Thirteen Strings Chamber Orchestra.

Learn more about Lawrence at Lawrence Vine

Lawrence is sponsored by the University of Ottawa

Victor Herbiet

Victor Herbiet studied saxophone with Peter Smith and Noël Samyn and composition with Steven Gellman at the University of Ottawa where he obtained a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in saxophone performance. His most recent compositions for solo saxophone and clarinet were featured as compulsory works for the 2019 Saxiana International Competition in France, to which he was invited as adjudicator. Victor is currently adjunct professor at the University of Ottawa’s School of Music. He publishes his compositions through Gérard Billaudot, Dorn Publications and the Canadian Music Centre. Victor has been playing principal saxophone with the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra since 2007.

Learn more about Victor at Victor Herbiet

Victor is sponsored by the University of Ottawa

Richard Hoenich

Montreal-born Richard Hoenich enjoys a distinguished career as a performer, conductor, and educator. He has conducted professional orchestras on four continents and at such prestigious venues as the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, the Zarzuela Theatre in Madrid, and the Salle Pleyel in Paris. In Canada, he has conducted the Toronto Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, among others. During his tenure as principal bassoon with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra from 1979 to 1991 he was appointed associate conductor of the MSO by music director Charles Dutoit.

Learn more about Richard at Richard Hoenich

Richard is sponsored by the University of Ottawa

Kimball Sykes

Kimball Sykes joined the National Arts Centre Orchestra as principal clarinet in 1985. Born in Vancouver, he received a Bachelor of Music Degree from the University of British Columbia.  He has performed and toured with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and was a member of the Vancouver Opera Orchestra. While in Vancouver, he was a founding member of the Vancouver Wind Trio. From 1983 to 1985 he was principal clarinet of the Honolulu Symphony Orchestra.

Learn more about Kimball at Kimball Sykes

Kimball is sponsored by the University of Ottawa

Chip Hamann

Born in Lincoln, Nebraska, Charles “Chip” Hamann earned a Bachelor of Music and the prestigious Performer’s Certificate from the Eastman School of Music in 1993. He was appointed to the principal oboe chair of Canada’s National Arts Centre Orchestra in 1993 at the age of 22. Mr. Hamann has also served as guest principal oboe with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, London’s Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, and Quebec’s Les Violons du Roy.  Mr. Hamann is Adjunct Professor of oboe at the University of Ottawa School of Music and was on the faculty of the NAC Summer Music Institute for twenty years.

Learn more about Chip at Chip Hamann

Chip is sponsored by the University of Ottawa

Carolyn Christie

Carolyn Christie won the Second Flute Chair of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra (OSM) in 1978, after beginning her orchestral career with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra. With the OSM she toured 40 times, performing in Europe, Asia, South America and North America. Ms. Christie performed in Carnegie Hall on many occasions and has appeared on about 100 recordings.  Ms. Christie taught on the faculties of the University of Alberta, Concordia University, and the Conservatoire de Quebec à Montréal, as well as Domaine Forget and The National Youth Orchestra of Canada.

Learn more about Carolyn at Carolyn Christie

Carolyn is sponsored by the University of Ottawa

Shawn Spicer

Shawn Spicer has been a professional trumpet player and educator since 1990. He has played in orchestras across Canada and was principal trumpet of Orchestra London Canada from 1999 to 2014. Shawn is the principal trumpet of the London Symphonia and is in demand as a freelance player across Ontario Canada.

Learn more about Shawn at Shawn Spicer

Shawn is sponsored by Western University

Christine Vlajk

Violist Christine Vlajk has performed extensively in North and South America, Europe, much of China, Hong Kong and New Zealand. Originally from Denver, Colorado, Vlajk has Bachelor degrees in Viola Performance (B.M.) and Music Education (B.M.E.) from the University of Colorado in Boulder and a Masters degree in Viola Performance (M.M.) from the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.  She has been guest soloist with the West Virginia Symphony, Hamilton Philharmonic, Peterborough Symphony and the Kitchener Waterloo Symphony Orchestra.

Learn more about Christine at Christine Vlajk

Christine is sponsored by Laurier University

Jeremy Bell

A native of Toronto, violinist Jeremy Bell earned a B. Mus degree from the University of Toronto, and from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, he received his Masters and Doctor of Music.  Dr. Bell is a recipient of numerous grants from the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts and is a prize winner of the Eckhardt Grammatté National competition and the Conseil Québécois’ Prix Opus. He has studied with David Zafer, George Neikrug, Joyce Robbins, Metro Kozak and with members of the Orford, Juilliard, Tokyo, and Orion string quartets. Joining the Penderecki String Quartet in 1999, Dr. Bell is Artist in Residence at Wilfrid Laurier University where he teaches violin and chamber music.

Learn more about Jeremy at Jeremy Bell

Jeremy is sponsored by Laurier University

Stephen Tam

Canadian flautist Stephen Tam is equally comfortable as soloist, chamber musician or orchestral player, performing repertoire ranging from the baroque to the contemporary.  First-Prize Winner of the 32nd CBC/Radio-Canada National Competition for Young Performers, Stephen has appeared as concerto soloist in recent seasons with the Canadian Sinfonietta, the Ontario Philharmonic and Counterpoint Community Orchestra. Past concerto engagements included collaborations with the Calgary Philharmonic, the Banff Festival Orchestra and the Toronto Senior Strings.

Learn more about Stephen at Stephen Tam

Stephen is sponsored by Western University

Dan Fortin

Dan Fortin was born and raised in Peterborough, Ontario. His eclectic tastes and stylistic flexibility have led to work with a wide variety of artists in the jazz, rock and pop worlds, including Bernice, The Allison Au Quartet, Queer Songbook Orchestra, Emilie-Claire Barlow, John Southworth, Serena Ryder, July Talk, Devon Sproule, Mike O’Neill, Bryn Roberts, David Occhipinti, Tara Davidson, Harley Card, Michael Davidson, Alex Goodman, and many others.
Dan is a co-leader of the trio MYRIAD3, along with pianist Chris Donnelly and drummer Ernesto Cervini. Together, they’ve released five albums for Alma Records: Tell (2012), The Where (2014 – Juno nominee), Tell((Chip)) (2015 – Donnelly’s electronic reimagining of their debut record), Moons, (2016), and Vera (2018.) 

Learn more about Dan at Dan Fortin

Dan is sponsored by the University of Toronto

Chris Donnelly

Chris Donnelly is an instructor at the University of Toronto, an associate composer at the Canadian Music Centre, and has been nominated for two Juno Awards.  Trained simultaneously as a classical pianist and a jazz pianist, his genre-bending repertoire is an eclectic mix of jazz, ragtime, stride, gospel, improvisation, original compositions and classical music.  Chris is a member of Myriad3, a contemporary jazz trio playing mostly original music that features different aspects of jazz improvisation, ensemble performance and contemporary composition. 

Learn more about Chris at Chris Donnelly

Chris is sponsored by the University of Toronto

William Carn

Trombonist William Carn has emerged as one of Canada’s leading contemporary jazz trombonists and composer. He has performed internationally as well as throughout Canada. His recordings, Carn Davidson NINE and Other Stories, have been nominated Juno Awards in 2014 and 2007 respectively. Most recently, he was nominated for a Down Beat Magazine Rising Star award in 2015.  As a bandleader, William currently leads several groups; the William Carn Quintet, his quartet Run Stop Run, and most recently, a co-lead ensemble with saxophonist Tara Davidson, named the Carn Davidson 9.

Learn more about William at William Carn

William is sponsored by the University of Toronto.

Bob Denney

Bob Denney was the Head of Fine Arts and Technology at John McCrae S.S in Ottawa. The JMSS Guitar Ensemble was awarded the Canadian Music Educators’ Association Wilfred Harvey Small Ensemble of the Year award in 2007. Bob served for 9 years as the Canadian Representative and Lead Instructor for Teaching Guitar Workshops Canada, where he instructed guitar pedagogy and technique to music educators. Bob continues to promote guitar education as a guest lecturer at the University of Ottawa Faculty of Education.

Dr. Jaimie Hillman

Jamie Hillman is a Canadian and American musician, active as a conductor, music educator, singer, and pianist. He holds the endowed Elmer Iseler Chair in Conducting at the University of Toronto where he is Director of Choral Studies and an Associate Professor. He conducts the U of T MacMillan Singers and leads the master’s and doctoral degree programs in Choral Conducting, as well as the annual summer Choral Conducting Symposium.  Hillman is also Associate Conductor and Director of Community Engagement of the Toronto Mendelsohn Choir. Prior to relocating to Toronto in 2021, Hillman served on the faculties of Boston University Metropolitan College/Prison Education Program, Boston University Tanglewood Institute, Gordon College, Kodaly Music Institute and the Longy School of Music of Bard College.

Learn more about Jaimie at Jaimie Hillman

Janet Song Kim

Dr. Janet 성은(Song-eun, or Song, for short) Kim (any pronouns) is the Assistant Professor of Music and director of the Wind Ensemble at the University of Connecticut. In this role, they conducts the UCONN Wind Ensemble in addition to teaching conducting and wind literature classes.  Kim earned their doctor of musical arts degree in conducting from The Herb Alpert School of Music at the University of California, Los Angeles. Prior to this, they earned a master of arts degree in instrumental conducting from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and their bachelor of music degree in music education and jazz studies, magna cum laude, from Montclair State University.

Learn more about Janet at Janet Kim

Dr. Jill Ball

Jill Ball is an award-winning teacher and an accomplished solo, chamber and orchestral musician as well as an active adjudicator, conductor, and clinician. Her responsibilities include the Undergraduate and Graduate percussion studio, directing the Western University Percussion Ensemble, and Division Coordinator for Winds, Brass and Percussion.

She has performed with a variety of professional orchestras in the United States and Canada, including the Chicago Sinfonietta, the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, Orchestra London, and the Windsor Symphony. Other solo appearances include the Northwestern University Wind Ensemble, the Oklahoma City University Percussion Ensemble, and the Western University Percussion Ensemble. Jill is a frequent recitalist and advocate of contemporary music. She has recorded with the Robert Hohner Percussion Ensemble on the Albany and DMP labels. She holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Michigan State University, a Master of Music from Northwestern University and a Bachelor of Music Education from Central Michigan University and has also taught at the University of Windsor and at the University of New Brunswick. She is Past President of the Ontario Chapter of the Percussive Arts Society.

Jill is sponsored by the Don Wright Faculty of Music, Western University

David Lum

David retired from the Toronto District School Board in January of 2021, after a 32-year teaching career with the Toronto District School Board and the Scarborough Board of Education. During that time, he served as Curriculum Leader and Assistant Curriculum Leader of Music at Agincourt Collegiate Institute. Prior to that, he was the Band Director at Bliss Carman Sr. Public School. Ensembles under his direction have been recognized for excellence both provincially and nationally, and have performed at Roy Thompson Hall, Massey Hall and the Toronto Centre for the Arts, as well as the Ontario Provincial Legislature. 

Learn more about David at David Lum


Helen Geng

Helen Geng has been teaching with the York Region District School Board since September 2018. A graduate from the University of Toronto Faculty of Music, Helen is an avid trumpet player and currently performs with the Metropolitan Winds of Toronto. Helen has participated in conducting symposia with York University, the University of Toronto, and the University of California Los Angeles. She has been a clinician for trumpet and wind band at many schools in the Greater Toronto Area, and for several years, she was a member of the trumpet section and the Personnel Manager of the Toronto Youth Wind Orchestra (TYWO).

Since 2018, Helen has been an elected member of the TYWO Board of Directors, currently serving as the chair of the Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accessibility (IDEA) Committee. In 2020, Helen was awarded the Ontario Band Association’s Conducting Excellence Award for her work with the Richmond Hill High School Symphonic Winds. ​

Chee Meng Low

Chee Meng Low enjoys a diverse career as a conductor, educator, administrator, and performing on saxophone as an orchestral, chamber, and solo musician. Chee Meng is Assistant Professor of Music at the University of Lethbridge, where he conducts the Wind Orchestra, teaches saxophone performance, conducting and musicianship skills. He has performed as a soloist, chamber musician and guest conduct in North America, Europe and Asia.   A recipient of the University of Alberta FS Chia Doctoral Scholarship, Chee Meng holds a Doctor of Music degree from the University of Alberta. Chee Meng was the host for the 2019 Region 9 North American Saxophone Alliance regional conference, a member of the International Committee, World Saxophone Congress (2006-2009), regional representative of the Asia Pacific Band Directors’ Association (2007-2010), and current member of the North American Saxophone Alliance.

Pierre Long-Tao Tang

Dr. Pierre Tang oversees the instrumental ensemble program, directs the orchestra and wind ensemble, and serves as the conductor for the annual musical theatre and opera productions at Pepperdine University. Selected presentations of his scholarly research on conducting studies include the Oxford Conducting Institute International Conference and the California All-State Music Educators Conference.  Tang currently also serves as the Director of Music at St. Matthew’s United Methodist Church in Newbury Park, California.  Before his orchestral pursuits, Tang completed master’s degrees in both wind conducting and choral music, and specialized in piano performance at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.


Peggy Hua

Peggy Hua has been active in the diverse music scenes of Vancouver. With Taiwanese heritage and connection to Chinese culture, Peggy is currently appointed as the Resident Conductor of the BC Chinese Orchestra and BC Chinese Music Ensemble, Conductor of Egret Taiwanese Choir, Left Coast Labour Chorus, Vancouver Huaren Choir, and Artistic Director of Downton Singers. In 2014, Peggy directed Cor Flammae as the inaugural guest conductor and is currently the associate conductor of the choir. In 2016, Peggy was invited to guest conduct the Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra in the Bamboo – Vietnamese and Intercultural Fusions concert featuring Contemporary Vietnamese and Canadian composers. Peggy has also been on the faculty of University of British Columbia School of Music teaching choral conducting.

Learn more about Peggy at Peggy Hua

Dr. Elroy Friesen

Described as “innovative, expressive, and dynamic,” Dr. Elroy Friesen is Director of Choral Studies at the University of Manitoba, where he conducts numerous choirs and teaches graduate conducting. His award-winning ensembles tour nationally and internationally, and are frequently recorded and broadcasted by the CBC.  Friesen’s award-winning ensembles tour nationally and internationally, and are frequently recorded and broadcasted by the CBC. He has appeared as guest conductor with the Winnipeg Symphony and the National Arts Centre Orchestras.

Friesen is in demand as a clinician, adjudicator, and conductor throughout North America and Northern Europe. He is the co-founder and Artistic Director of Schooner Cove Singers, a professional chamber choir based in Parksville, B.C. He is the co-founder of fikamusik, a Choral Conducting Intensive taught in the Desautels Faculty of Music. Friesen is also the past Artistic Director of Prairie Voices and has held positions of Artistic Director of the Mennonite Community Orchestra, Director of Choirs at St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Urbana, Illinois, and Director of the University Chorus in Champaign, Illinois. He is in demand as a clinician, adjudicator, and guest conductor throughout Canada, the United States, and Northern Europe.


Bradley Barnham

Brad is a conductor, composer and adjudicator from Burlington, Ontario. He is currently the music director of Wavestage Theatre Company in north Toronto, assistant director of the Bach Chamber Youth Choir, and assistant music director for Christ’s Church Cathedral in Hamilton. Brad graduated in 2016 with a master’s degree in choral conducting from the University of Toronto.

Learn more about Brad at Brad Barnham

Corey Gemmell

Corey is concertmaster of the Mississauga Symphony Orchestra, Symphony Hamilton Orchestra and the Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra.  He has also performed in this role with the Boris Brott National Academy Orchestra, Toronto Mendelssohn Choir Orchestra, and Esprit Orchestra.  He performs frequently with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra. He is presently on faculty at the Western University, the National Music Camp of Canada and is a member of the Royal College of Examiners.

Corey has distinguished himself as a soloist and chamber musician with performances in Canada, Germany, the United States and China.  Concerto appearances include performances of such works as Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons, the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto, Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante, Beethoven Triple Concerto, Beethoven Violin Concerto, Sibelius Violin Concerto, Brahms Violin Concerto and Brahms Concerto for Violin and Cello.  20th Century solos with orchestra include Mozetich’s Affairs of the Heart for Violin and Orchestra and Vaughn Williams’ The Lark Ascending.  He has performed as concertmaster for a number of musicals including recent productions of Beauty and the Beast, the Hugh Jackman Show and Next to Normal and has worked with such pop icons as Hugh Jackman and Chantal Kreviazuk.




Yves Laroche

Yves Laroche is a Performance Instructor in Jazz Piano at Carleton University and Carleton Jazz Camp, and has been a part-time faculty member at the School of Music at the University of Ottawa for over 20 years, teaching Arranging and Jazz Ensemble. He also appeared as guest performer at an alumni gala concert, and has performed at convocation at Saint Paul University. As well, he has lectured on jazz harmony and improvisation.

In 2007, he received a Great Grant Award from the Trillium Foundation for his excellence in jazz education at the elementary school level. Yves Laroche helped establish jazz programming for Café Nostalgica and the Jazz Vespers Series at All-Saints Anglican Church in Westboro.  Yves worked as an arranger for CBC Radio’s Ottawa In Concert featuring Vanessa London. Recently, his jazz composition “For Oscar” was aired on the CBC Radio jazz music program Tonic. He has performed with the Ewashko Singers, the Cantata Singers of Ottawa, Capital Vox and the Orpheus Theatre Company, and he was musical director and pianist for the National Arts Centre production of Angel Square by Brian Doyle.  His vast musical theatre experience includes productions of Jesus Christ SuperstarGodspell and Once Upon A Mattress. As a jazz sideman, he plays regularly with the Pollcats, the Peter Liu Trio, the Rick Rangno Project and the Doug Martin Quartet. He regularly plays private engagements at Rideau Hall, the Rideau Club, and the Chateau Laurier, and is featured at the Brookstreet Hotel, Zolas and Vineyard’s Wine and Bar Bistro. 

Yves is sponsored by Carleton University Music.

Eric Hall

Eric is an Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto.  He earned a MM from the Juilliard School, a BM and Performer’s Certificate from the Eastman School of Music.  He is the principal bassoon position in three different organizations: the Canadian Opera Company, the Hamilton Philharmonic and the Grant Park Orchestra in Chicago.  As a soloist, Eric has performed with the Niagara Symphony, the New World Symphony, the National Repertory Orchestra in Colorado and the Waterloo Symphony in Iowa.

Eric has performed on recordings with the Canadian Opera Company and the Grammy-nominated Grant Park Orchestra as well as on radio broadcasts for CBC radio and Classical WFMT in Chicago. As well, he has been involved in numerous film scores and recordings for the CBC, and has performed at festivals in Banff, Heidelberg, Spoletto, Edinburgh, Japan, Taiwan and Korea.

Eric is sponsored by the University of Toronto.

Brennan Connolly

Brennan is a Percussion Instructor at Wilfrid Laurier University.  He holds a Master of Music degree in Performance from Oklahoma City University and a Bachelor of Music degree in Performance from the University of Western Ontario.  He directs the Wilfrid Laurier University Percussion Ensemble and is on faculty at the Inter-Provincial Music Camp and Southampton Summer Music. In the broader arts community of Waterloo Region, he also directs the Percussion Ensemble at Cameron Heights CI in Kitchener and the Drumline at Sir John A. MacDonald SS in Waterloo.

As an orchestral musician, Brennan perform regularly with the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Orchestra and Jeans ’n’ Classics Rock Symphony. He has also performed with the Windsor Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra London (Canada) and the Oklahoma City Philharmonic.  As a theatre musician, Brennan has appeared both onstage and as a pit musician at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, and played numerous other community theatre shows with Drayton Entertainment, Theatre Woodstock, Theatre Ancaster and Theatre Norfolk.  His chamber ensemble, Duo Percussion has toured the province of Ontario performing concerts for general audiences as well as numerous school shows.

Brennan is sponsored by Wilfrid Laurier University.

Jim Catalano

Jim Catalano earned a BS in Music Education from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He was Graduate Assistant Band Director at The University of Notre Dame in South Bend, IN, earning his Masters in 1977. Jim taught music at the middle, high school and community college level.  He has been on the leading edge of percussion instrument development, sales, education and marketing for Ludwig / Musser from 1983 until his retirement in 2019.  Jim has served on the board of directors of the Percussive Arts Society from 1999-2002 and received the 1998 PAS President’s Industry Award and the 2010 Midwest Music Industry Award.

Jim has recorded several CDs with “The “Keystone Wind Ensemble”. He plays drums with “Truth in Jazz”, “Jazz Assemblage” big bands in Indiana, vibes with his own jazz group “VibeNation” and conducts recreational percussion workshops. As an active percussion clinician Jim has recently been featured at the 2001, 2006 & 2012 Midwest Band Clinic, Pennsylvania MEA – 2005, Texas MEA – 2009 & 2014, American Band College in Ashland, OR – 2003, 2006 & 2013 and Conn-Selmer Institute from 1998 – 2014.

Jim is sponsored by Conn-Selmer.

Bobbi Thompson

Saxophonist Bobbi Thompson currently serves as Assistant Professor of saxophone at Western University. She has performed with a wide range of organizations including Orchestra London (Canada), Irving Symphony Orchestra, Plano Chamber Orchestra, Toronto Wind Orchestra, Dallas Jazz Orchestra, Grand Theatre (Canada), Drayton Entertainment, and the world-famous University of North Texas Lab Bands.

Outside of her role as a performer and educator, Dr. Thompson serves on the Editorial Board of the North American Saxophone Alliance’s journal The Saxophone Symposium. She previously taught saxophone and chamber music at The Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. She holds the Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, graduate Music Certificate from Bowling Green State University, Master of Music Education from the University of North Texas, and Bachelor of Music in Instrumental Performance from the University of Idaho.

Matthew Marsit

Matthew Marsit is an active conductor and clarinetist that has led ensembles and performed as a solo, chamber, and orchestral musician throughout the United States. He became Chair of Instrumental Studies at Boston Conservatory at Berklee in 2018, and also serves as artistic director of the Charles River Wind Ensemble. Matthew previously held conducting positions at Dartmouth College, Ithaca College, Cornell University, Drexel University, Symphony Nova, Chestnut Hill Orchestra, Bucks County Youth Ensembles, Performing Arts Institute of Wyoming Seminary, and Eastern U.S. Music Camp. He served on the clarinet faculty at Plymouth State University.  Matthew first completed his studies in music at Temple University in Philadelphia, where he graduated summa cum laude.  He completed a M.M. in conducting from Boston Conservatory in 2012.

As a clarinetist, Matthew has performed with many ensembles, including the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, Fairmont Chamber Orchestra, and Cornell University’s Ensemble X, and has made solo appearances with the Keene State College Concert Band, Dartmouth College Wind Ensemble, Handel Society of Dartmouth College, Cornell University Jazz Ensemble, Performing Arts Institute of Wyoming Seminary, Drexel University Symphony Orchestra, and Chestnut Hill Orchestra.

Matthew is sponsored by Conn-Selmer.

Russell DeVuyst

Russell DeVuyst  has performed as Associate Principal Trumpet with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra since 1992.  He teaches trumpet, coaches small ensembles and conducts the Orchestral Repertoire class at the Schullich School of Music at McGill University.  Russell received a Bachelor of Music Education degree from the Boston Conservatory of Music and a Master of Trumpet performance (with Distinction) from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Massachusetts.

Previous to his Montreal appointment, Russell held positions as Principal Trumpet with several orchestras including the Israel Philharmonic, Boston Opera Company, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Memphis Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Symphonica della RAI in Torino, Italy,  the Orquestra Sinfonica de Mineria in Mexico City, Venezuela Symphony, and the Caracas Philharmonic in Venezuela. Additionally, he has performed as principal trumpet and section with the Indianapolis Symphony, Vermont Symphony and the New York Philharmonic.  Russell has conducted trumpet/brass masterclasses internationally including Japan, Malaysia, Peru, Brazil, United States and Canada.

Russell is sponsored by Conn-Selmer.

Alastair Eng

Cellist Alastair Eng joined the Toronto Symphony Orchestra in 2017. Born and raised in Toronto, he also serves as the Assistant Principal Cello of the Santa Fe Opera Company Orchestra.  Prior to joining the TSO, he was the Associate Principal Cello of the Canadian Opera Company for seven seasons. He has also performed as Guest Principal Cello with the National Arts Centre Orchestra (Ottawa, Canada).  Alastair earned his Master of Music degree with honours from the New England Conservatory, and holds a Performance Diploma from the RCM.

Alastair has led string and cello sectionals for the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra, the Boston Youth Philharmonic, and the Taylor Performance Academy of The Royal Conservatory (RCM), and has served as Assistant Conductor of the RCM’s Community School Orchestra. In September 2020, he joined the faculty of Axis Music, a tuition-free music program for children and youth living in Toronto Community Housing.  As a composer/arranger, Alastair has received commissions from violinist Augustin Hadelich, guitarist Pablo Sáinz Villegas, ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro, and A Far Cry, among many others. His arrangements have been called “sweet” (The Boston Globe), “delightfully schmalzy” (The Boston Musical Intelligencer), and “serious and surreal” (Strings Magazine).

Alastair is sponsored by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra