Articles Tagged As Yamaha Performing Artist

Fix It: Trumpet Teaching Tips

For over 30 years, I have had the tremendous privilege of playing trumpet for audiences around the world. Without the support, guidance and influence from my middle school (Mr. Kazanjian) and high school (Mr. Ezer) band directors, I would not have had the opportunity to pursue this musical passion that has given me so much […]

Flutist Mimi Stillman’s Sweet Sounds

Flutist Mimi Stillman compares her role of managing the chamber music group Dolce Suono (“Sweet Sounds”) to running a small country. Although she quickly gives credit to a strong team and dedicated board, Stillman’s roles as founder, artistic director and executive director mean she dives into “everything, from the minutia of scheduling rehearsals to grant […]

Mimi Stillman: Accomplished and Approachable

Mimi Stillman was only 12 years old when she started working toward her bachelor’s degree at the prestigious Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. “I did a lot of media interviews about being a prodigy, but I was very lucky,” she remembers. “I was just doing what I loved to do. I had the most […]

Larry Williams’ Juggling Act

If hornist Larry Williams were a superhero, he might be called The Juggler. Williams’ music career spans decades and includes his current status as a performer, instructor, collaborator and administrator — and that’s just a few of his roles. “I didn’t know I was a juggler until I started juggling,” he says. “Right after graduation, […]

Cellist Mike Block’s Musical Quest

“The quest to explore different traditions from around the world outside of classical music has really felt like a quest to discover more about myself,” says Mike Block. Block, an associate professor at Berklee College of Music and the New England Conservatory, plays the cello and sings. Other than that, he’s hard to pin down. He has […]

Denis DiBlasio: Jazz Saxophonist, Music Educator and Storyteller

Denis DiBlasio is a natural improviser. He was about 10 years old when his music teacher wrote down a blues scale in F. “He said, ‘Just make up stuff and use these notes,’” DiBlasio says. “I must have played that thing for two years. I just beat that thing to death.” After spending so much […]

Reflections on Being Colleagues and Friends — Eric Shin and Jauvon Gilliam

In Jauvon Gilliam and Eric Shin: Performers, Teachers and Entrepreneurs, we outlined how percussionists Jauvon Gilliam and Eric Shin balance teaching, performing and running their own businesses. We asked them to share their thoughts on each other as colleagues and friends.   Eric on Jauvon “Jauvon’s spirit is so strong. He’s the coolest dude in the world […]

Jauvon Gilliam and Eric Shin: Performers, Teachers and Entrepreneurs

Jauvon Gilliam and Eric Shin aren’t well acquainted with the oft-repeated saying, “When one door closes, another opens.”  For this powerhouse percussion duo, opportunity repeatedly knocks, and doors keep opening wide. Shin’s and Gilliam’s plates are more than full. Both are percussion lecturers at the University of Maryland School of Music, where Gilliam is also […]

How to Choose the Right Mallet

Imagine that it’s a new school year, a new band/ensemble season, and the percussionist arrives to rehearsal to see what music is in store for the first concert. Alongside the percussionist is a mallet bag, and inside are his or her tools. When opened, the bag looks like a beautiful and colorful bouquet worthy of […]

The Drive of Top Tubist Aaron Tindall

“I’m kind of hard-wired to do things at a pretty intense level,” says Aaron Tindall. “In the low brass field, you just have to be relentless.”  And Tindall expects the same passion from his students. “He’s one of the most hard-working people I’ve ever met,” says TJ Graf, one of Tindall’s students. “What are you […]

Aaron Tindall’s “10 Rules of Play”

Consistency is key, so build your pedagogy around creating consistency in these 10 areas.

How Trumpeter Sean Jones Gets Respect

Some educators command attention with a booming voice and a larger-than-life presence. Sean Jones employs a completely different tactic that is equally — and probably more — effective. He teaches with a soft voice and an unassuming demeanor. But the acclaimed jazz trumpeter and music educator instantly gains his students’ respect. How? “[I] lead by […]

Pablo Rieppi’s Passion for Percussion

World-renowned percussionist Pablo Rieppi decided to teach himself to play drums as a junior in high school. Little did he know that a year later, he would decide to pursue music professionally when the rock band he formed with his friends won a local battle-of-the-bands competition. Starting on a chosen instrument at a later age […]

Christian Howes: Versatile Violin Virtuoso

At 15 years old, violin virtuoso Christian Howes found himself envious of his school’s last-chair second violinist. Howes recalls how that classmate was composing and recording his own original songs. “He couldn’t play his way out of a paper bag, [but] … he was writing his own songs,” Howes recalls. “I remember feeling a pang […]

Clarinetist Julie DeRoche Molds Music into Art

In the early 1980s, Julie DeRoche — who had recently received her degree in clarinet performance from Northwestern University — was juggling four jobs to make ends meet as she worked toward a fulltime career in music. Teaching private lessons, recording commercial jingles as a freelancer, working as the first-call substitute with the Chicago Symphony […]

Boston Brass’ Quest to Educate Young Musicians

As you might have guessed, the Boston Brass is a brass quintet originally formed in Boston. What you might not have known is that more than performing with a unique blend of broad repertoire and boisterous fun, the group’s first goal is to help educate as many young musicians as possible. “If there’s a day […]

Jeff Coffin: Professor Rock Star

Jeff Coffin remembers listening to AM radio in the car as a child and being attracted to the emotional component of music. In fifth grade, he chose to play the saxophone in the school band program, or rather he believes that the saxophone chose him. “I think [the saxophone] is very close to the human […]

Jeff Coffin’s Words of Wisdom for Educators

Draw on life experiences to help music educators be better teachers.

The Many Faces of Trumpeter Allen Vizzutti

As a teenager in Missoula, Montana, Allen Vizzutti received the rare opportunity to befriend one of his idols. Doc Severinsen, trumpet player and bandleader for NBC’s “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson,” gave a guest performance at Vizzutti’s high school. With the encouragement of his band director, Vizzutti played a solo for Severinsen, who eventually […]

Black Violin Dares Students to Dream Big

While in high school in the 1990s, Kevin Marcus Sylvester programmed his cell phone to play a Busta Rhymes rap song. The customized ringtone amazed his orchestra-mates, who eventually transcribed the whole piece and played it regularly together in class. Their director, James Miles at Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, encouraged this free-thinking […]

Trombonist Wycliffe Gordon Does it All

On a seemingly normal mid-April day, a group of jazz students at Columbia College Chicago are fixated on the man who’s talking, world-class jazz trombonist Wycliffe Gordon. Their excitement is palpable. The lights shine down from above while the Artist-in-Residence’s master class takes place. Gordon is so close that the students can see their reflection […]

Kenneth Tse: Master of the Saxophone

When Dr. Kenneth Tse joined band for the first time at the age of 13, he wanted to play the trumpet; however, he was told that he had the right hands and teeth for making an ideal sound on the saxophone. Only later did Tse find out that the band director had simply needed a […]

Copyright © 2022 Yamaha Corporation of America and Yamaha Corporation. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Accessibility