Trombonist Alex enjoys a varied and successful career in many musical settings as an active member of the musically diverse Southern California freelance performing and recording community. Alex began his musical career while a student at UCLA, as a member of the Disneyland All American College Band. He studied trombone privately with Roy Main, Ralph Sauer, Byron Peebles and Per Brevig. Since graduating from UCLA, he has gone on to establish himself as one of the most in-demand trombonist/low brass performers, recording artists and educators in Southern California.
Among the varied palette of artists with whom Alex has performed and/or recorded are: Joe Cocker, James Horner, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Alan Jackson, Zubin Mehta, Kid Cudi, The Tonight Show, Sir Neville Mariner,Hans Zimmer, Johnny Mathis, Lalo Shiffrin, Natalie Cole, Jeffery Kahane, Danny Elfman, Ray Charles, Trevor Rabin, Harry Connick Jr., Robbie Williams,Henry Mancini, Josh Grobin, John Zorn, Terence Blanchard, Barbra Streisand, John Williams, Fallout Boy, Thomas Ades, Neil Young, Johnny Mandel, Paul McCartney, and Prince.
Alex has toured as lead and solo jazz trombonist with Woody Herman and Maynard Ferguson. He has performed and recorded as a regular member of many of the top big bands and jazz groups in the Los Angeles area including Bob Florence’s Limited Edition, Tom Kubis Big Band and he was an original member of Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band.
He has performed on The Motion Picture Academy Awards, The Emmy Awards, Golden Globe Awards, The People's Choice Awards and hundreds of television series and motion picture soundtracks including “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”, “Frozen”, “La La Land”, “Minions”, “Rogue One”, “Ted”, ”Pirates of the Caribbean”, “Up”, “The Incredibles", “X-Men”, “Secret Life of Pets”, “Avatar", “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”, “LOST”,"Transformers", “Godzilla”, “Toy Story” and, "Spiderman”.
Alex has played in the pit orchestras of numerous Los Angeles productions of Broadway shows including: "The Lion King","Phantom of the Opera", "Chicago", "West Side Story", "The Producers" and "Wicked".
In the summer of 2001, Alex was one of sixteen trombonists from an international field chosen to participate in a 10 day orchestral/solo seminar hosted by New York Philharmonic Principal trombone virtuoso, Joe Alessi.
In October, 2002 Alex was appointed principal trombonist of the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra. He has also performed as alto, tenor and bass trombonist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, The The Pasadena Symphony and The LA Chamber Orchestra. In 2014, Alex became a regular member of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra.
Alex has been a faculty trombone and jazz instructor at the California Institute of the Arts . Azusa Pacific College and California State University, Northridge. He has appeared as a recitalist, guest soloist, and clinician at the with schools and organizations throughout the United States, including Indiana University, Oklahoma State University, The University of Southern California, Texas Christian University and he has appeared as a soloist and given master classes three times at the International Trombone Festival.
Alex is a graduate of Arcadia High School, class of 1979!
John Burdett, Ed.D, is the Director of Instrumental Studies and Director of Bands in APU's School of Music. In this role, Dr. Burdett facilitates the Instrumental Studies program, leads the band division, and teaches undergraduate and graduate students. Prior to joining APU, Dr. Burdett held tenure track and adjunct appointments teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in conducting, music education, and ensemble direction at several institutions including Mt. San Antonio College, California Polytechnic University, Pomona, California State University, Fullerton, and California State University, Los Angeles. In addition to his dissertation research into the experiences of students with hearing loss in instrumental music, Dr. Burdett's research interests include the performance practice of symphonic compositions with Spanish and Latin American stylistic influences, the psycho-social components of conducting, the democratization of decision making in large concert ensembles, and increasing accessibility to music education for marginalized student populations.
Gary Woodward, holds degrees in music from the University of Southern California and Chapman University, and enjoys an active and diverse musical life in Southern California. He has performed as principal flutist with virtually all of the major orchestras in the area including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and Pacific Symphony. He regularly performs as principal flutist for the Los Angeles Music Center Opera and for the Joffrey Ballet. He is active in recording for motion pictures and television, and has performed in the orchestra for over a dozen first-class musical theatre productions including "Les Miserables" and "Phantom of the Opera." He currently also holds a faculty position at the University of Southern California, and Azusa Pacific University.
Jennifer Showalter is a versatile professional clarinetist in Los Angeles, California. Ms. Showalter has been principal clarinet of many symphony, opera, ballet, chamber, and musical theater orchestras and has performed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Long Beach Symphony, Pacific Symphony, Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, Santa Barbara Symphony, Long Beach Ballet, Symphony in the Glen, California Philharmonic, Asia America Symphony, Pasadena POPS, and the Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra, as well as many regional orchestras. In constant demand as a master teacher, Ms. Showalter is currently instructor of Clarinet Studies at Azusa Pacific University. Previously, she was on the Applied Faculty of California State University Long Beach, Biola University, Long Beach City College, and Pasadena City College. She is regularly engaged as an adjudicator and clinician, and was a member of the Pasadena Symphony Mentor and Tempo programs. Ms. Showalter was also the Clarinet Curriculum developer for Maestro Concept.
John holds a Bachelors degree and a Masters degree in tuba performance from the University of Southern California.
He has performed with a wide variety of music ensembles, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Los Angeles Opera, the Long Beach Opera, the American Winds Concert Band, the Long Beach Municipal Band and the Joffery Ballet. His performing experience also includes phonograph recordings with such diverse artists as Lyle Lovett, Burt Bacharach, Elvis Costello, Carly Simon and Alice Cooper, in addition to television (shows such as Alias, The Simpsons, Family Guy, American Dad, Futurama, and King of the Hill), records, jingles and a wide variety of motion pictures, such as Rogue One, Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness, Star Trek Beyond, Ted, John Carter, Cars II, Super 8, Ted, Mission Impossible 1 and 3, Crimson Tide, The Thin Red Line, Men in Black, X-Men, Pearl Harbor, Swordfish, Legally Blonde, Planet of the Apes, Piglet’s Big Movie, The Hulk, Pirates of the Caribbean 1, 2 and 3, Spiderman 2 and 3, The Incredibles, Ratatouille (Oscar Nominated for Best Film Score), Speed Racer, Star Trek, ‘UP’ (Oscar Winner for Best Film Score as well as Grammy Winner for Best Song), Land of the Lost and You Again, Emmy Winning PSYCH The Musical, Star Trek- Into Darkness, Mission Impossible !V- Ghost Protocol, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Inside Out
Mr. Van Houten has also served as music contractor/orchestra manager on numerous films, commercials, video games and live orchestral productions. He also has taught at several universities and colleges in the Southern California area, including Cole Conservatory of Music at California State University, Long Beach, Azusa Pacific University, and Concordia University.
Sean is an accomplished multi-instrumentalist. Tenor, Alto, Soprano, Baritone Sax, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet
Oboe, English Horn, Flute, Piccolo, Alto Flute. Sean studies privately with
Joe Stone, Leo Potts, Eric Marienthal, and Gary Foster.
On Broadway shows, NYC
The Apple Tree – Roundabout Theater Company, Studio 54 (Kristin Chenoweth)
Stairway to Paradise – Encores!, City Center (Chenoweth)
Gypsy – Encores!, City Center (Patti Lupone)
The View, The Today Show
Brian Setzer Holiday tour 2007
Participant in the prestigious Henri Mancini Institute (UCLA)
Recorded on Grammy nominated album “Elevation”
Sean is also a woodwind coach at Arcadia HS
At the age of 22 Mike Zonshine joined the Honolulu Symphony Orchestra as its Principal Trumpet Player-a job he held for almost a decade when the orchestra ceased operations.
Mike has studied at Boston University, at the Eastman School of Music, and at the University of Southern California. Also, Mike was twice a part of the Tanglewood Music Center's famed fellowship program-once winning the Voisin Trumpet Award.
As a teacher Mike has taught extensively: He co-founded the University of Hawaii Trumpet Ensemble, which soon became an ensemble that involved the entire trumpet community of the island of Oahu. Performers in this ensemble included high school students, university students, amateur musicians, and professional musicians. Mike also taught for five summers at the Boston University Tanglewood Institute where he was the brass coach for the Young Artist's Orchestra. Also, as a Yamaha Performing Artist and Clinician, Mike has given many recitals and masterclasses at many of the top music institutions in the US as well as countless masterclasses for high school/middle school band programs.
Mike currently resides in Southern California and continues to teach and perform actively.
Kansas State University
Dr. Frank Tracz is Professor of Music and Director of Bands at Kansas State University. At K-State he coordinates undergraduate and graduate conducting activities, teaches classes in music education, and administers and guides all aspects of the K-State band program.
Dr. Tracz received the Doctor of Philosophy (music education) from The Ohio State University, a Master of Music degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from The Ohio State University. Dr. Tracz has several years of experience teaching in the public schools of Ohio and Wisconsin. He has also served as Assistant Director of Bands at Syracuse University and Director of Bands at Morehead State University. He has served as an adjudicator, clinician and guest conductor for all-state and honor bands across the nation, as well as in Canada and Singapore.
Dr. Tracz is on Faculty for the Conn-Selmer Institute (CSI), as well as a past member of the Music Education Journal Editorial Board and is a contributor to the series Teaching Music Through Performance in Band. His Honors include Stamey Award for Outstanding Teaching, Kansas Bandmasters Outstanding Director Award, named a Lowell Mason Fellow, Wildcat Pride Alumni Award, Paula Crider Outstanding Band Director Award and election to the Prestigious American Bandmasters Association. Dr. Tracz was also elected to the Phi Kappa Phi Honorary Fraternity in April 2015 for academic and scholarly achievements. This past December the Kansas State University Marching band was awarded the prestigious Sudler Trophy from the John Philip Sousa Foundation for excellence, contribution, and innovation in marching band. Most recently, Dr. Tracz was awarded the 2016 Professorial Performance Award for his outstanding achievements over a sustained period of time with the KSU Band program, and was recently inducted into the Conn-Selmer Institute Hall of Fame.
Ayala High School
Mark Stone has been at Ayala High School since they opened the doors in the fall of 1990. Before coming to Ayala he taught for three years at Grant High School (Van Nuys, CA), five years at Don Lugo High School (Chino, CA) and two years at Townsend Junior High School (Chino Hills, CA). While in Chino Valley Unified Mr. Stone has served as Ayala’s Performing Arts Department Chairperson and the district Mentor Teacher in Performing Arts. He has also received many awards and accolades including Ayala High School ‘Teacher of the Year’ in 1999 and recipient of the Fidelity Investments ‘Inspire The Future’ award in 2006. He is an adjudicator for Southern California School Band and Orchestra Association. Mr. Stone attended Pasadena City College, and received his Bachelor of Arts degree and Credential at California State University, Los Angeles.
Arcadia High School (retired)
Tom has been the distinguished director of Arcadia High School Band for the past thirty-three years. As a twenty-nine year old teacher from Azusa, he took the leap to the Arcadia Unified School District and the rest, as they say, is history. He has led the band to numerous national awards and marched in the Rose Parade ten times. The Apache Marching Band owns more than thirty (30) major championships and is nationally recognized as one of the best bands in the country.