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Dr. Glenn D. Price (Concert Band/Orchestra)

whistler festival adjudicator

Dr. Glenn D. Price has earned an international reputation as a leading conductor and educator through his experience conducting student, community and professional symphony orchestras and wind ensembles in over 30 countries.

He has conducted many renowned soloists, including Evelyn Glennie, Christian Lindberg, Ney Rosauro, Jens Lindemann, Alain Trudel, Roger Webster, Kenneth Tse, Adam Frey, Simone Rebello, David Campbell, John Marcellus, Michael Burritt, David Rejano Cantero and Wayne Bergeron. Widely regarded as an authority on the field of wind music, he has appeared as featured conductor for organizations such as CBDNA, WASBE, ABA, The Midwest Clinic, MENC, and BASBWE. His numerous recordings are recognized for expanding the repertoire and providing a performance model of technical precision and musical artistry.

A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, his profession as a noted percussionist gradually yielded to his career as a conductor, which included studies at the Toho Gakuen School of Music in Japan and the Tanglewood Music Center in the U.S., as well as in Europe and Russia. Active also as a composer and author, his comprehensive text on the art of conducting, titled The Eloquent Conductor (pub. GIA 2016), has earned highly positive critical acclaim.

His distinguished performing, teaching and conducting career has included full-time positions in Canada and the U.S., most notably as Professor of Music (Emeritus) at the University of Calgary, as Director of Wind Studies at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM), and currently as the Director of Performing and Visual Arts at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) where he conducts the Caltech Wind Orchestra and Caltech Symphony Orchestra. He is also the conductor of TEMPO, a professional contemporary chamber ensemble based in Los Angeles. His dedicated service to the profession has encompassed appointments as Artistic Director of the International Youth Wind Orchestra, Founding Conductor of the Orquesta Latinoamericano de Vientos (Wind Orchestra of Latin America), and election as President of the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles (WASBE).

Colin Clarke (Concert Band/Orchestra)

whistler festival adjudicator

A recipient of the Clifford Evans Award for Conducting, Colin Clarke’s credits include collaboration with world-renowned artists and ensembles including the United States Air Force Band of Liberty in Boston, Massachusetts, the Canadian Brass, the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir and the U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, the official fanfare ensemble for the President of the United States. He is best known for his work with the multi-award winning Toronto Youth Wind Orchestra, an ensemble he started as a high school student. Today, the Toronto Youth Wind Orchestra enjoys a reputation as one of the leading performance ensembles of its kind in Canada.

Colin has led the Provincial Honour Bands of Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and Prince Edward Island, and also served as Conductor of the prestigious National Youth Band of Canada. Abroad, Colin has led performances in the United States, the United Kingdom, Austria, Bulgaria, Spain and China.

With a passion for music education and outreach, Colin remains active as a conductor, guest lecturer, clinician, adjudicator and composer/arranger. He received the Lifetime Membership Award from the Ontario Band Association for his contributions to music and music education in Ontario. He is Music Director of the Oakville Symphony Youth Orchestra, and is the newly-appointed Artistic Director of the Oscar Peterson Program at the Royal Conservatory of Music.  

Jeremy Brown (Concert Band/Orchestra)

edmonton adjudicator

Jeremy Scott Brown is a renowned Canadian saxophonist, woodwind doubler, teacher, expert on the music of Henry Cowell and conductor. He is Professor of Music and the former Head of the Music Department at the University of Calgary. (1990-present) He has also been an Artist-In-Residence and a visiting artist/lecturer at the Banff Centre. In 2015 his recording of Wayfaring by Nova Pon was nominated as the Outstanding Classical Composition the Year by the Western Canadian Music Awards and in 2010, his CD solo recording of Canadian saxophone music, “Rubbing Stone” was nominated outstanding classical recording of the year. In 2014 he was awarded the inaugural University of Calgary Faculty of Arts Teaching Award. In 2009 he was conferred the title “Canadian Music Ambassador” by the Canadian Music Centre for his work promulgating music by Canadian composers, with more than forty works commissioned. In 2008, he was named an “Innovator of the University of Calgary” for his community outreach, and in 2007 was awarded the David Peterkin Award for his contribution to music education in Alberta by the Alberta Band Association. In 1999 he was awarded the University of Calgary Student’s Union Teaching Award for the Faculty of Fine Arts.

As a university teacher, his undergraduate and graduate students have won numerous national and international awards, scholarships and recognition. His university ensembles have been widely recognized for original programming and performing excellence; most recently the U of C Jazz Orchestra won the Outstanding Ensemble Award at the 2013 Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival and ten outstanding soloist awards at the 2014 Elmhurst Jazz Festival, Chicago Illinois.

He has recorded numerous records, including Scaramouche with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, (2003, CBC records) In the Company of My Soul (2003, Arktos Label), Ornamentology (lightblue records) Rubbing Stone (2010, Centredisc Label), The Lethbridge Sessions (2014, Centredisc Label) and The Verismo Jazz Quintet (2005). His inaugural recording of the wind band works of Henry Cowell with the winds of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra will be released in 2016 together with his forthcoming book, “The Wind Band Music of Henry Dixon Cowell” for Sourcebooks in American Music, the College Music Society. As a saxophone soloist he has appeared with many bands and orchestras including the Washington-Idaho Symphony, the National Youth Band of Canada, the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, the Red Deer Symphony, Festival Orchestra of the 2003 World Saxophone Congress (Minneapolis) the Okanogan Symphony Orchestra, Kensington Sinfonia and the Ottawa Symphony. He is also lead tenor saxophonist with the Calgary Jazz Orchestra.

Recently, his world premiere of The Orchid Garden for tenor saxophone by Andrew MacDonald with the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra (November 2015) was reviewed as “a dazzling display of classical discipline and agility combined with a jazz artist’s freedom and sense of exploration.” (Ottawa Citizen, Natasha Gauthier) He is the founding artistic director of the Rubbing Stone Ensemble, a new music ensemble based in Calgary and former conductor and founding artistic director of the National Concert Band of Canada (2002-2010). He is has been Artistic Director of the Calgary Wind Symphony since 1997, a 60 piece community band founded in 1955. In 2003, he co-founded Verismo, a Calgary jazz quintet whose inaugural recording garnered great critical acclaim and subsequently performed at the 2007 Montreal Jazz Festival.

Dr. Brown has written numerous pedagogical articles and in addition to his forthcoming book, was co-compiler and series editor of the inaugural Royal Conservatory of Music Saxophone Series (2014). This groundbreaking and comprehensive saxophone series includes graded repertoire, etudes, technical studies and orchestral excerpts and is used internationally.

His numerous articles are published in the Instrumentalist, Journal of Band Research, Journal of the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles, Saxophone Symposium, Canadian Band Journal, International Society for the Investigation of Wind Music and Canadian Winds. He is a currently a contributing editor to Canadian Winds.

Robert Spittal (Concert Band)

whistler festival adjudicator

Robert is an award-winning composer, conductor, flutist and saxophonist whose music has been described as “inventive”, “clever” and “full of musicality” by critics and musicians alike. He is Professor of Music at Gonzaga University (USA) where he teaches conducting, music theory and composition. Dr. Spittal led the Gonzaga Wind Ensemble for 27 years, and received a doctorate in wind conducting from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. His compositions have been commissioned and performed by some of the finest professional and academic musicians in North America, Europe, South America and Asia, including The Bay Brass, Borealis Wind Quintet, Atlanta Chamber Winds, Monmouth Winds, New England Conservatory, National Chamber Winds and North Texas Wind Symphony. Robert’s work combines sophisticated art music forms and techniques with an appealing musical vernacular that reaches across boundaries of genre and style. This concern for aesthetic sophistication and artistic integrity in combination with a satisfying and often intentionally enjoyable appeal to the listener’s ear, has been developing since his adolescent years, when he was both a serious flute student in the Cleveland Institute of Music’s Prep program and a free-lance saxophonist in horn sections of jazz, r&b and other dance bands.

Scott Leithead (Concert Choir)

edmonton adjudicator

ARTISTIC DIRECTOR CONDUCTOR, KORORA CONDUCTOR EMERITUS, ÒRAN Scott Leithead is the founder and Artistic Director of Edmonton's Korora Choir Association and TIME Association. He has been invited to conduct provincial and state honour choirs on twenty-six occasions and he has presented workshops in North America and beyond. Notable appearances include: adjudicating the Tampere International Festival in Finland; conducting the 2013, 2015-2019, 2023 Ellison Canadian Honour Choir. He has adjudicated both the ACCC National Competition for Amateur Canadian Choirs and the Kathaumixw International Choir Festival (2014, 2016, 2023). Under his direction, Korora was the winner of both the 2015 CBC National Competition for Canadian Amateur Choirs and both the 2015 and 2016 Canadian National Music Competition.  In the summer of 2019, Korora was invited to perform at the IFCM World Choral Expo in Portugal, where they represented Canada on the world stage.  Also in 2019, Korora was featured on an episode of CTV's "The Amazing Race Canada”.

Scott has a passion for music from southern Africa, and he has been invited to work with choirs in South Africa and Namibia on numerous occasions. In 2008–2009, Scott was on sabbatical in Namibia, where he worked with the Mascato Youth Choir and many other choirs in southern Africa. Scott’s passion for innovative and unique choral music experiences has shaped the direction of the Korora Choir Association. In February 2023 he conducted the ISSEA Mass Choir in Johannesburg South Africa featuring international schools from across the African continent.

In 2024, he will conduct the 40th Anniversary Manitoba Sings Adult Choir, the Ellison Canadian Honour Choir (Toronto), the Eastman Honour Choir and the Nova Scotia Youth Choir.  He will also adjudicate the 2024 Ontario Vocal Festival. Scott is a longtime member of the advisory committee for the Canadian Rocky Mountain Music Festival and the Edmonton and Whistler Cantando Festivals.

Scott was awarded Choir Alberta’s top honour, the Richard S. Eaton Award, in 2015. He also received Edmonton’s Salute to Excellence award in 2016. He has also been awarded the Syncrude Award for Innovative Direction.

McKenna Stenson (Concert Choir)

edmonton adjudicator

As an innovative conductor, teacher, and vocalist, McKenna Stenson has built a career inspiring students to sing with confidence and motivating communities to create lasting change through song. Her energetic demeanor permeates positivity throughout the ensemble, creating a community of compassion, trust, and resilience.

Stenson currently serves on the faculty at the University of Kansas (KU) as the Associate Director of Choral Activities/Professor of Practice starting in the fall of 2022 where she will conduct KU Glee (Tenor-Bass Choir) and The Oread Singers. In addition to leading ensembles, Stenson teaches classes in choral methods, undergraduate conducting, and voice.

Prior to her appointment at KU, Stenson was a DMA student in Choral Conducting at the University of North Texas (UNT) where she studied under Dr. Allen Hightower, Dr. Kristina MacMullen, and Dr. Jessica Nápoles. She directed the UNT Camerata and assisted Dr. Kristina MacMullen with the UNT University Singers. Additional teaching appointments at UNT included Music Fundamentals and serving as a teaching associate for Undergraduate Conducting and Vox Aquilae, the university's flagship early music ensemble.

Stenson enjoys serving as a guest conductor, clinician, presenter, and adjudicator for choirs throughout the United States and abroad. Upcoming engagements include teaching internationally with The Cornish-American Song Institute “Music Across the Pond”, where she will lead seminars in choral conducting and choral masterclasses, and directing the Kansas Treble All-State Honor Choir in 2023. She has served in state leadership roles as well as presented sessions at state and regional conferences. Stenson was nationally recognized as a Country Music Award Foundation Music Teacher of Excellence for 2020. Most recently she was named third-place winner of the 2021 American Prize Conducting Competition and a finalist for the 2022 South-Western American Choral Association Graduate Conducting Masterclass.

Stenson earned a Bachelor’s of Music in Vocal Performance and Bachelor’s of Music in Music Education from The Ohio State University and a Master of Music from Michigan State University. Stenson enjoyed serving as a public school teacher as the Choral Director and CFPA Vocal Director at Charles J. Colgan High School. Stenson, who was named “New Faculty Member of the Year” in 2017, directed five choirs during the day and three after-school ensembles at Colgan High School. Under the direction of Stenson, the Colgan Choral Ensembles were invited to perform at venues such as the Kennedy Center Millenium Stage and served as arts ambassadors throughout the Virginia Commonwealth. In 2018, the Colgan High School Chamber Ensemble was selected to perform at the Virginia Music Educators Association conference and received a standing ovation for their performance. In her free time, she enjoys running, singing with her husband Bryan, and interviewing female conductors on her new podcast conduct(her).

Dr. Rachel Rensink-Hoff (Concert Choir)

edmonton adjudicator

Dr. Rachel Rensink-Hoff is Associate Professor of Music at the Brock University Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine & Performing Arts, Conductor of the Brock University Choir and Sora Singers and Artistic Director of the Avanti Chamber Singers. Prior to her appointment at Brock University, she spent eight years on faculty at McMaster University.

2014 winner of the Leslie Bell Prize for Choral Conducting of the Ontario Arts Council, Rachel and choirs under her direction have been the recipients of numerous honours and awards. Her university women’s choir earned first prize in their category of the 2015 National Choral Competition for Amateur Choirs and in 2019 the Avanti Chamber Singers was named “Most Promising New Adult Ensemble.” In 2022, she received the Arts in Education Award by the City of St. Catharines.

Rachel is Past Vice-President of Programming for Choral Canada and Past-President of Choirs Ontario and maintains an active career as adjudicator, clinician, workshop presenter, and juror both locally and across Canada. She has served as guest conductor of the Nova Scotia Youth Choir (2017), the Alberta Youth Choir (2022) and the Ontario Youth Choir (2023).

Recipient of the 2010 Choral Canada National Choral Award for Outstanding Dissertation, Rachel has published numerous articles on choral pedagogy and repertoire in the Choral Journal, Anacrusis, and the Canadian Music Educator. She has presented at conferences for Choral Canada, the Ontario Music Educators’ Association and Choirs Ontario and internationally with the American Choral Director’s Association and the International Federation for Choral Music World Symposium on Choral Music. She is also founder and leader of Brock's Niagara Choral Workshop program for choral teachers and conductors.

Rachel holds Master of Music and Doctoral degrees in choral conducting and music education from Western University. She has also completed additional choral studies as Conducting Fellow in the Chorus America Conducting Academy and participant in the Eastman School of Music Summer Conducting Institute, the Voice Care Network of St. John’s University, Minnesota, and at the University of Toronto.

Greg Jasperse (Concert Choir/Jazz Choir)

edmonton adjudicator

A world-renowned composer, arranger, vocalist and pianist, Greg is now the Director of Vocal Jazz at Western Michigan University. No stranger to the stage or recording studio, his credits include numerous movie soundtracks such as Epic, Oz, the Great and Powerful, The Campaign, Start Trek, and, Star Trek 2 as well as the Red Hot Chili Pepper’s Monarchy Roses and The 2nd Law, the recent release from Muse. Greg is a member of Vertical Voices, Sixth Wave and is the music director for the Santa Fe Desert Chorale’s Voasis. In November of 2014, he had the pleasure of subbing with the New York Voices and the Bob Mintzer Big Band on their Japan tour. He has also performed with Adele, Jennifer Holiday, Joe Williams, Rosemary Clooney, Dianne Reeves and Bobby McFerrin among others. His conducting credits include all-state jazz choirs in New York, California, Oklahoma, Indiana, Arizona, Missouri, Colorado, New Hampshire, Illinois, Iowa as well as the British Columbia Honors Jazz Choir and Musicfest Canada’s Ellison Honour Choir. Greg is a graduate of University of Miami and Western Michigan University.

Craig Brenan (Jazz Band)

edmonton adjudicator

Creative jazz trombonist and composer Craig Brenan has performed and recorded in a wide variety of settings from trio to large ensemble and has been featured on over 20 albums as a composer and performer. After nearly a decade of creating and working in a diverse variety of projects, Craig moved to Boston to complete a master’s degree in jazz studies at the New England Conservatory. While in Boston, Craig studied with artists including Jerry Bergonzi, Bob Brookmeyer, Slide Hampton, and Curtis Fuller. Craig is currently an Assistant Professor at MacEwan University in Edmonton Alberta.

2022 Festival Adjudicators:

  • Dr. Gordon Brock (Concert Band)
  • Dr. Jeremy Brown (Concert Band)
  • Dr. Scott MacLennan (Concert Band)
  • Dr. Angela Schroeder (Concert Band)
  • Dr. Robert Taylor (Concert Band)
  • Dr. Darrin Oehlerking (Concert Band)
  • Joel Gray (Jazz Ensemble)
  • Dr. Ethan Sperry (Concert Choir)
  • Tim Shantz (Concert Choir)
  • Dr. Nicole Lamartine (Concert Choir)
  • Dylan Bell (Vocal Jazz)
  • Suba Sankaran (Vocal Jazz)

2019 Festival Adjudicators:

  • Jennifer Lang (Choral)
  • Graeme Langager (Choral)
  • Benila Ninan (Choral)
  • Scott Leithead (Choral)
  • Mark DeJong (Jazz Band)
  • Gareth Jones (Concert Band)
  • Dr. Christopher Bianco (Concert Band)
  • Gerard Morris (Concert Band)
  • Dr. Gordon Brock (Concert Band)
  • Dr. Angela Schroeder (Concert Band)
  • Dr. Gerald King (Concert Band)

2018 Festival Adjudicators:

  • Ray Baril (Concert Band)
  • James Smart (Concert Band)
  • Wendy Grasdahl (Concert Band)
  • Christin Reardon-MacLellan (Concert Band)
  • Angela Schroeder (Concert Band)
  • Larry Gookin (Concert Band)
  • Essi Wuorela (Choral)
  • Elise Bradley (Choral)
  • Andrew Withington (Choral)
  • Katy Luyk (Choral)
  • Joel Gray (Jazz Band)

2017 Festival Adjudicators:

  • Ray Baril (Concert Band)
  • Shelley Jagow (Concert Band)
  • Gillian Mackay (Concert Band)
  • Fraser Linklater (Concert Band)
  • Angela Schroeder (Concert Band)
  • Jeremy Brown (Concert Band)
  • Elroy Friesen (Choral)
  • Dinah Helgeson (Choral)
  • Dean McNeill (Jazz Band)

2016 Festival Adjudicators:

  • Jeremy Brown (Concert Band)
  • Angela Schroeder (Concert Band)
  • Gary Green (Concert Band)
  • Gordon Brock (Concert Band))
  • Dennis Beck (Concert Band)
  • Allan McMurray (concert band)
  • Christin Reardon MacLellan (Concert Band)
  • Jerrold Dubyk (Jazz Band)
  • Graeme Langager - UBC (Choral)
  • Lisa Ward (Choral)
  • Scott Leithead (Choral)
  • Dominic Gregorio (Choral)

2015 Festival Adjudicators:

  • Don Owens (Concert Band)
  • Robert Taylor - UBC (Concert Band)
  • Brian Unverricht (Concert Band)
  • Wendy Grasdahl(Concert Band)
  • Craig Brenan (Jazz Band)
  • Scott Leithead (Choral)
  • Benila Ninan (Choral)

2014 Festival Adjudicators:

  • Allan McMurray - University of Colorado (Concert Band)
  • Robert Taylor - UBC (Concert Band)
  • Rodney Dorsey - University of Oregon (Concert Band)
  • Tom Staples - University of Lethbridge (Concert Band)
  • Joel Gray - MacEwan University (Jazz Band)
  • Kathleen Skinner (Choral)

2013 Festival Adjudicators:

  • Larry Gookin (concert band)
  • Dr. Mark Hopkins (concert band)
  • Don Owens (concert band)
  • Dr. Angela Schroeder (concert band)
  • Larry L. Schrum (concert band)
  • Scott Leithead (choral)