6225 Brass: The Chicago Way


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Recital Highlights

Whether or not you’re a brass player, and whether or not you teach high school, middle school, or beginning band, Brass: The Chicago Way will have something very special to offer you! Presentations will focus on tips for starting beginning brass players, and exercises and materials to help students mature as brass players and musicians. Special guests from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra will complement members of the VanderCook brass faculty as they share the experiences that have helped mold them to become some of the finest performers in the world. Class members will receive first-hand experience in playing trumpet, horn, trombone, euphonium and tuba. Tone production, building flexibility, range and technique, intonation issues and warm-up exercises will be covered for all instruments. All students will leave with a host of ideas, information and materials designed to help students of all ages.

Students are encouraged to bring instruments for use in class. A limited number of instruments will be made available, however arrangements must be made in advance.


Instructors: Freddy Martin, Chris Martin, Michael Mulcahy, Susanna Guant, Dr. Leah Schuman, Matthew Gaunt, Timothy Riordan & Peter Jirousek



Freddy Martin was born and educated through high school in Cobb County, Georgia. Mr. Martin attended Jacksonville State University in Alabama where he received the Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education. Mr. Martin has done post-graduate work at Georgia State University in Atlanta.
Mr. Martin served as director of the South Cobb High School Band from 1969 to 1979. Under Mr. Martin's ten-year direction the band grew from a membership of 17 students to one of the finest high school bands in the country with a membership of 300 students. The band program had a nationally recognized marching band, a fine jazz band, and four very fine concert bands, along with three winter color guards. Mr. Martin has served as band director for Buford High School and is presently the band director at the Westminster Schools in Atlanta.
Mr. Martin is the founding director of the famed Spirit of Atlanta Drum and Bugle Corps. Under Mr. Martin's direction the corps was recognized as one of the finest marching music units in the world. Mr. Martin has served as brass coordinator for the world champion Phantom Regiment Drum Corps from Rockford, Illinois and is presently consulting with Carolina Crown and the Academy Drum Corps. Mr. Martin was elected to the Drum Corps International Hall of Fame in 2007.
Mr. Martin has served as a clinician and adjudicator in most of the fifty states and in England. He has been an active adjudicator for Bands of America for more than twenty five years and has judged the Bands of America National and Regional Championships numerous times. Mr. Martin and his sons have been presenters at the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic.
Mr. Martin is married to Lynda and they have two sons involved in music. Chris is principal trumpet with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Michael is fourth utility trumpet in the Boston Symphony. Mrs. Martin is a long standing member of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus.
Mr. Martin is on the faculty of the prestigious Westminster Schools in Atlanta Georgia where he serves as High School Band Director and brass specialist.
Christopher Martin holds the Adolph Herseth Principal Trumpet Chair of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Prior to his appointment in 2005 by Daniel Barenboim, Martin was principal trumpet of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and associate principal trumpet of the Philadelphia Orchestra under Wolfgang Sawallisch.
Martin regularly appears as soloist on the CSO’s subscription series—most recently in the 2012 world premiere of Christopher Rouse’s new concerto Heimdall’s Trumpet, which was commissioned for him by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. In 2011, Martin performed a program of twentieth-century French concertos by André Jolivet and Henri Tomasi with the CSO. He also has been a featured soloist with the Australian Chamber Orchestra in addition to performing with the Grand Teton Festival and Saito Kinen Festival orchestras.
Martin received a bachelor’s degree with performer’s certificate from the Eastman School of Music, and he has served on the faculty of Northwestern University.
He may be heard on CSO Resound recordings, including the 2011 release CSO Brass Live and as trumpet soloist in John Williams’s score to Stephen Spielberg’s Lincoln.
Chris and his wife Margaret, an organist and pianist, often perform as a duo in both baroque and contemporary repertoire.
Chicago Symphony Orchestra trombonist Michael Mulcahy has appeared as soloist and teacher in the United States, Canada, Europe, Russia, Japan, Argentina, New Zealand and Australia. He has performed as soloist with the CSO and Pierre Boulez in music by Elliott Carter and with Daniel Barenboim in Leopold Mozart’s Concerto for Alto Trombone, which was broadcast on PBS. Other appearances include the Bavarian Radio Symphony, the Hilversum Radio Symphony and the Melbourne Symphony.
Mulcahy is the winner of several international competitions, among them the Australian Broadcasting Corporation Instrumental Competition, the ARD International Music Competition in Munich, Viotti International Competition in Italy and International Instrumental Competition in the former East German city of Markneukirchen.
Active as a member of the Chicago Chamber Musicians, his work also includes collaborations with Barenboim, Boulez, Joseph Silverstein, Christoph Eschenbach, William Bolcom and Yo-Yo Ma, as well as appearances at Domaine Forget in Quebec, Chamber Music Northwest and the Grand Teton Music Festival, where he has been a conductor since 1993. He has worked with the world’s most prominent composers, including Elliott Carter, Luciano Berio, Iannis Xenakis, Olivier Messiaen, Krzysztof Penderecki and as a member of Karl-Heinz Stockhausen’s performance ensemble.
Sir Georg Solti appointed Mulcahy to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 1989. He also is principal trombone of Chicago’s Music of the Baroque and the Grand Teton Music Festival. His orchestral career began in 1976 as principal trombone of the Tasmanian Symphony. A year later, he attained the same chair with the Melbourne Symphony. He left Australia in 1981 to pursue a career in Europe, where he became solo trombone of the Cologne Radio Symphony.
He was named senior lecturer of the Canberra School of Music at Australian National University in 1987. In 1999, he was appointed professor of music at Northwestern University. He also has been an artist-in-residence at Indiana University and Wiley Housewright Scholar at Florida State University, and he regularly appears at universities worldwide.
Mulcahy’s interest in conducting was sparked by an invitation from West German Radio in 1987. Since then, he has been active in conducting a wide variety of works with an emphasis on the twentieth century. In 1988, he formed the Canberra School of Music Chamber Players and the Orchestral Repertoire Ensemble at Australian National University. Shortly thereafter, he was appointed assistant conductor of the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. He toured Japan as guest conductor at the International Youth Musicale in Shizouka and Denmark for the Royal Danish Orchestra in Copenhagen. He also has worked as an assistant for the Civic Orchestra of Chicago. He has conducted for Music of the Millennium and composer-perspective festivals at the Museum of Contemporary Art, served as music director for National Music Camp in Australia, and he regularly leads the Chicago Chamber Musicians and the Grand Teton Music Festival Brass Ensemble. Mulcahy has taught and conducted at Barenboim’s West-Eastern Divan Workshop for young Arab and Israeli musicians in Seville, Spain.
Mulcahy was born in Sydney, Australia. He began studying trombone with his father Jack Mulcahy, and completed his studies with Baden McCarron of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and with Geoffrey Bailey at the State Conservatorium of New South Wales.
Michael’s wife Gabrielle Webster is a freelance horn player in Chicago appearing regularly with the Chicago Symphony, Lyric Opera and the Chicago Chamber Musicians; daughter Lauren teaches at the Curtis School of Excellence, a leading AUSL school for CPS. His son, jazz bassist Patrick Mulcahy, recently released his second CD, Trouble with Machines with progressive rock sensation District 97.
Gaunt,_Susanna_Headshot_Su15Susanna Gaunt has performed at various music festivals including Napa Valley’s Music in the Vineyards Festival, the Pacific Music Festival and the Tanglewood Music Festival.
A native of New England, Susanna completed a Bachelor of Music degree in 1992 at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, where her principal teachers were Richard Sebring, Norman Bolter and Richard Mackey. Her primary mentor and inspiration is former teacher Nedo Pandolfi.

Susanna Gaunt joined the Chicago Symphony Orchestra as assistant/utility horn in January 2006.
Just prior to joining the CSO, Susanna performed regularly as a freelancer in San Francisco with the San Francisco Symphony, LucasArts Productions (recording movie soundtracks), the California Symphony and the Santa Rosa Symphony. She also has held various positions in other orchestras across the country, including third horn in the San Diego Symphony, third/associate principal horn in the San Antonio Symphony, and both third and fourth horn in the North Carolina Symphony. Susanna also has been a member of the San Diego Chamber Orchestra and the New World Symphony.
Outside of music, Susanna has a variety of other interests including cooking, hiking, gardening and running. She lives in Oak Park with her tubist husband, Matthew Gaunt, and their two young children.
schuman-leahDr. Schuman has been with VanderCook since 2003. She has broad teaching experience and maintains an active career as a free-lance trumpet player. Dr. Schuman has a doctorate of musical arts and a master of music degree in trumpet performance and literature from the Eastman School of Music, a graduate certificate in performance from the St. Petersburg State Conservatory in Russia, and a bachelor of music degree in trumpet performance from Northwestern University. She has played with the St. Petersburg State Chamber Orchestra, Illinois Philharmonic, Chicago Chamber Orchestra, Eastman Wind Ensemble, Merit Faculty Brass Quintet, Merit Chamber Players, Mahler Festival Orchestra and the Millar Brass.

Tubist Matthew Gaunt currently performs and records as a member of Burning River Brass and Proteus 7. An active chamber musician, he has also performed with Chicago Chamber Musicians, Chicago Symphony Brass Quintet, Millar Brass Ensemble, Rhythm & Brass, Center City Brass Quintet, Empire Brass, and is a former member of Majestic Brass, Boston Brass, Paramount Brass and Epic Brass Quintets. As an orchestral musician, Mr. Gaunt has performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, Grant Park Music Festival Orchestra, Cincinnati Pops, Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Boston Lyric Opera, Boston Ballet, Boston Philharmonic Orchestra, Portland Symphony, Vermont Symphony, Springfield Symphony, Rhode Island Philharmonic and the Sarasota Opera. Mr. Gaunt has also held principal positions with the Albany Symphony Orchestra, Berkshire Symphony Orchestra and Indian Hill Symphony Orchestra.   He received the bachelor of music in tuba performance from Boston University and has studied with J. Samuel Pilafian, Gary Ofenloch and Chester Schmitz. Mr. Gaunt also served as the Massachusetts State Representative of the International Tuba and Euphonium Association. Mr. Gaunt joined the Rockford Symphony Orchestra as Principal Tuba in the fall of 2013.
New to the VanderCook faculty, Timothy Riordan comes to us from the Merit School of Music, where he is the active director of the Alice S. Pfaelzer Tuition - Free Conservatory, the Dynamic Stars Preparatory Program, as well as the Artistic Director of Merit. Mr. Riordan has worked with the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra, Eastman School of Music and Carthage College.  He has performed with the Southwest Symphony, Viennese Symphony of Chicago, Star Plaza Orchestra, Crossroads Big Band, Northwest Indiana Symphony and the Chicago Philharmonic. Mr. Riordan studied trombone performance with John Marcellus at Eastman School of Music, and  conducting with Dr. Robert Hasty of Northwestern University.
jirousek_peter_semi-retouchPeter Jirousek began teaching at VanderCook in 2009. He previously taught at Elmhurst College and Notre Dame University. Mr. Jirousek received his bachelor of music performance degree from the University of Illinois and a master of music performance degree from Northwestern University. He lists among his teachers Roger Rocco, Norman Schweikert, Richard Oldberg, Sharon Corbin and Bruce Moss.

Mr. Jirousek served as principal horn in the South Bend Symphony for 14 seasons, and as the Chicago Chamber Orchestra's principal horn for 8 seasons. He has been second horn for the Northwest Indiana Symphony since 1990. He served as third horn in the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra, and has performed with the Ravinia Festival Orchestra, Grant Park Orchestra and Lyric Opera of Chicago, as well as for the Members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra programs. 

Recently, Mr. Jirousek was an orchestra member for Broadway in Chicago's productions of Wicked, Billy Elliot, Mary Poppins, Les Miserable and Phantom of the Opera.


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Course Information

6225 Brass: The Chicago Way

3 graduate credits
Location: VCM 3125 Room M116

Click HERE for a campus map.

Tuition: $930 (includes $75 resource fee)
A $75 deposit is required at time of registration. Tuition balance is due in full by the first day of class.

June 22-26
Monday - Thursday: 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Friday: 8:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.


VanderCook College of Music

3140 South Federal Street
Chicago, IL 60616-3731
(312) 225-6288

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