Category Archives: brass-percussion-alumni

Douglas Wolf, BM’75 received the Utah Percussive Arts Society’s 2014 Service Award

Douglas Wolf, BM’75 received the Utah Percussive Arts Society’s 2014 Service Award. This is a lifetime achievement award from the Utah Chapter of PAS and recognizes Wolf’s 38 years of service as a percussion teacher and performer in Utah. In 1977, Wolf established the Utah PAS Day of Percussion festival, which has grown to include more than 800 student participants annually. Wolf continues to serve as head of the Percussion Program at the University of Utah School of Music and he maintains a busy performing schedule as percussionist with the Utah Symphony Orchestra, Utah Opera Company, and Ballet West. The Utah Chapter of PAS said of Wolf, “His influence of excellence has had a profound and long-lasting effect on the percussion community in the state of Utah, leaving a legacy which will continue to blossom in future generations.”

Douglas Wolf
Professor Douglas Wolf (left) receives the Utah Percussive Arts Society’s 2014 Service Award from Utah PAS President, Michael Sammons (right).

Chris Albrecht, trumpet alumnus, placed well in international competition

Chris Albrecht,  Bachelor of Music in Trumpet Performance (2009), was a finalist in the International Trumpet Guild Orchestral Excerpts Competition this past summer.  The conference was held from June 11-15, 2013 in Grand Rapids, MI .  Chris was the overall second place winner.   He received his MM from the University of Michigan and is completing a DMA at Arizona State University.

Jason Dovel (MM ’05) performs in Greece

BGSU music alumnus Jason Dovel taught and performed in Greece as part of the 2013 Exploring Trumpet in Greece International Music Festival. He presented a morning warm-up clinic, coached chamber ensembles, and presented a lecture recital titled “Baroque Trumpet and Early Music Performance Practice.” The festival included performances, clinics, and events in Athens, Kalavrita, and Klitoria. Master classes, clinics and recitals were presented by internationally renowned trumpet artists including Gerassimos Ioannidis of the Orpheus Conservatory in Athens; Vince DiMartino, an international soloist and 2012 NSU Trumpet Festival featured artist; David Hickman of Arizona State University; Rich Illman of Michigan State University; Edward Reid of the University of Arizona; and Al Hood of the University of Denver.

Jason Dovel is assistant professor of trumpet at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. He studied trumpet at BGSU with George Novak and Charles Saenz.

Alumnus Ryan Nowlin prepares music for inauguration

For many, the opportunity to live their life’s dream takes a backseat to life’s realities, but not so for Ryan Nowlin, BGSU alumnus and staff arranger for the“President’s Own” United States Marine Band. However, daring to believe he could live his dream propelled Nowlin last month into a spotlight he could never have predicted, when he had the“amazing and humbling” opportunity to participate in the Inauguration of President Obama, including arranging pieces for Kelly Clarkson and Beyoncé.

Inspired by his pride and love of country, Nowlin sought to create a“lush, orchestral sort of sound’ as he arranged the pieces for the pop stars. According to Nowlin, both Clarkson and Beyoncé wanted to perform with the Marine Band, and each had a vision of her arrangement. Nowlin had just two weeks to arrange the pieces and send the demos on to their music directors. In his first experience with major celebrities, he says, “Everyone was fantastic. Both Ms. Clarkson and Beyonce’asked for a copy of the vocal sheet music to frame for their studios. I was particularly touched by that.”

“Ms. Clarkson had a very evocative take on ‘Tis of Thee’ and how she wanted it to go,”said Nowlin. “We were able to capture her smokey-bluesy quality but still stay true to the song. Beyoncé wanted a presidential and reverential arrangement—one that would have strong emotional pull. It was a true collaboration between us all, and I was given the freedom to make both pieces original and fit the occasion.”

Beginning his musical instruction at age 5 on the piano, moving on to trumpet by age 10 and French horn by 17, Nowlin always knew his future would revolve around music, but not necessarily to the heights he has achieved with the Marine Band.

“I’ve always looked up to, listened to, and was constantly inspired by the Marine Band. I can’t say that I ever imagined being a part of it—seemed out of my reach—and my sights and dreams were always on being a music teacher and running a band program … or being John Williams!”

Reflecting on the opportunity to participate in the Inauguration, Nowlin said,“I found the experience deeply, deeply moving and surreal. To be a part of such an historic event, and to be a part of music that communicates my very personal emotions about our country was simply an experience I will never forget. I was very moved by the way the artists treated the music, and incredibly humbled by the response of the hundreds of thousands of Americans on the National Mall.”

Nowlin earned both a bachelor’s degree in music and a master’s degree in music education from BGSU, studying with Herbert Spencer and Bruce Moss. Over the years he has worked as staff arranger for the Bowling Green State University Marching Band, band director at Jackson City Schools, and director of bands for the Brecksville-Broadway Heights School District before joining The Marine Band in 2010.

“It’s true that I am living my dream, but my dream, like many’s, is finding a place where any gifts I have been given can do the most good for the most people. Could I have predicted where I would be today? No—and that’s the beauty of it. I had this dream and through grace, it has led me to where I am today.”