Dr. Rachel Julian
DIRECTOR OF PERCUSSION
Rachel Julian received her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 2005. She also holds a Master of Music and a Bachelor of Arts in Music.
A freelance percussionist in Las Vegas, Rachel’s performance credits include the Las Vegas Philharmonic, Nevada Pops, Nevada Ballet Theatre, Vegas! The Show (Planet Hollywood), Latin Grammys, Andrea Bocelli, Don Rickles, Hugh Jackman, Luciano Pavarotti, David Perrico’s Pop Strings Orchestra, Celtic Woman, Lion King – Las Vegas, Hairspray, Opera Las Vegas, Newsies, Tracy Thornton's "Pan Rocks" Project Los Angeles (with Tracii Guns of Guns N’ Roses, Billy Sheehan of Steve Vai and Mr. Big, Stephen Perkins of Jane’s Addiction, and Matt Starr of Ace Frehley and Mr. Big), Nevada Opera Theatre, Killian’s Angels, Steel R & R Steel Drum Duo, the Tommy Rocker Band, and other freelance opportunities. Rachel appears on the DVD, Andrea Bocelli – Amore Under the Desert Sky, and has performed in Mexico, Canada, England, China, Austria, Poland, Germany, and the Czech Republic.
As an educator, Rachel teaches percussion and keyboard at Becker Middle School, and also serves as Percussion Specialist with the Las Vegas Youth Orchestras and the Clark County School District. In addition, she instructs camps, adjudicates, gives clinics, and maintains a private studio.
Rachel is a member of the American Federation of Musicians, and the Vic Firth Education Team. She endorses Remo Drums & Percussion, SABIAN Cymbals, and Majestic/Mapex Percussion. She also served as Secretary of the Nevada Chapter of the Percussive Arts Society for ten years.
DIRECTOR OF JAZZ
John Diaz has been the director of bands at Lawrence Junior High School since it’s grand opening in 1999, and has taught in the Clark County School District since 1992. Under his direction, the Lawrence Junior High School Band has grown to over 300 students. The program offers three beginning bands, two concert bands, an advanced band and a jazz band. Under his direction, Lawrence ensembles have consistently achieved superior ratings at the NMEA solo and ensemble, concert and jazz festivals and superior ratings at multiple music festivals in various states.
John was nominated as the initial conductor of the Las Vegas Brass Band in 1994. He served as the conductor for four years in which the ensemble performed for multiple community events. The elite group compiled a professional recording which was aired on KMPR radio station. He continues to perform and shares his love for chamber music by playing trumpet with the Pedagogical Brass Quintet. This performing ensemble performs for community events and holds concerts throughout the valley.
Mr. Diaz performed on trumpet at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, California and performed again on trumpet at the Statue of Liberty 100th Year Celebration in 1986 in New York, New York, where he performed a trumpet fanfare with the Boston Pops Orchestra under the direction of John Williams on national television. He also has shared the stage with famous trumpeter Terumasa Hino in Tokyo, Japan.
He graduated with his Bachelor of Music Education from the University of Arizona in 1987. He taught for the Nogales School District from 1987-1990 where he organized the Arizona Music Education Association Solo and Ensemble Festival in Tucson, Arizona. Mr. Diaz holds a Master of Music Education from University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 1990 and studied trumpet with Rocky Winslow. Mr. Diaz is very grateful to his band directors, Mr. Richard Klein, Dr.James Keene, Dr. Thomas Leslie, for their inspiration and love of music.
John Diaz has served as a guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator in the Clark County School District and has been the Director of Bands or part of the staff at El Dorado High School, Clark High School and has taught middle school for 26 years and currently the director of bands at Lawrence JHS. Diaz is also a member of the National Association of Music Education, Nevada Music of Education Association, Southern Nevada Band Association, and the Las Vegas Youth Orchestra where he has been the high brass coach since 2014. He is also establishing the Las Vegas Youth Jazz program where he will have the opportunity to share his jazz knowledge and experience with young musicians.
Dr. Lindsey O'Connor
DIRECTOR OF WOODWINDS
Las Vegas musician Dr. Lindsey O’Connor is the Adjunct Professor of Saxophone at Southern Utah University and the College of Southern Nevada, the Woodwinds Paraprofessional for both Clark County School District and Faith Conservatory of the Fine Arts, the Director of Woodwinds for the Las Vegas Youth Orchestras, and the Artistic Director of the Las Vegas Youth Saxophone Ensembles. As a Nationally Certified Teacher of Music (NCTM), she maintains a private woodwind and piano studio of more than sixty students at Family Music Centers Academy, Nevada’s largest private music teaching institution. O’Connor was previously on faculty at Union College and was a Band Graduate Teaching Assistant at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
O'Connor is the Woodwind Chair of the Nevada Music Teachers Association. As an educator, she frequently serves as an adjudicator and clinician for the Nevada Music Educators Association, Southern Nevada Band Association, and Las Vegas Music Teachers Association. An active member of the North American Saxophone Alliance since 2003, O'Connor has given master classes, lectured on “The Music of Benjamin Boone,” and performed in various solo and chamber settings at several regional and biennial conferences. She has been featured in Pan Pipes (Spring 2020) and The Instrumentalist Magazine (December 2016).
O’Connor’s performances have been described as “extraordinary” (Mesquite Local News), “flawless” (Walter White, Southern Nevada Symphony Orchestra Co-Concertmaster), and “beautifully played” (Moapa Valley Progress). O’Connor is an active solo artist, as well as soprano saxophonist of the Red Rock Saxophone Quartet and principal clarinetist of the Nevada Chamber Orchestra. She has been a saxophonist with the Henderson Symphony Orchestra and has played in musical productions on the Las Vegas Strip including Jesus Christ Superstar at the Tropicana and Guys and Dolls at the Westgate. O'Connor performed Marcello's "Concerto” for oboe [or soprano saxophone] with the Southern Nevada Symphony Orchestra, Russell Peterson’s “…Who Needs Enemies?” for saxophone quartet and wind orchestra at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts, the North American premiere of Jun Nagao’s “Die Heldenzeit” for alto saxophone and wind orchestra with the Desert Winds, and Henri Tomasi’s “Ballade” for alto saxophone with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Symphony Orchestra as a Graduate Solo Competition Winner. An advocate for new music, she has premiered solo and chamber works by Krista Abrahamson, Daniel Dorff, Garrett Hope, Kincaid Rabb, and David Von Kampen.
O'Connor's research is focused on the life and works of David Heath, British composer and flutist currently residing in Scotland. Her dissertation, "A Performer’s Guide to and Analysis of David Heath’s Out of the Cool, Rumania, and Coltrane," is the first and only academic document on Heath, making her the foremost scholar of both him and his music.
O’Connor received a Doctor of Musical Arts in Saxophone Performance cum laude from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, a Master of Music in Saxophone Performance magna cum laude from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and a Bachelor of Music in Saxophone Performance cum laude from Michigan State University. Her primary teachers include John Bailey, Phillip Barham, Paul Haar, Joseph Lulloff, and Diego Rivera; she has also performed in solo master classes for Claude Delangle, Jean-Yves Fourmeau, Ellis Marsalis, Bennie Wallace, and Walt Weiskopf. O'Connor's professional memberships include the American Federation of Musicians, College Music Society, International Clarinet Association, Music Teachers National Association, North American Saxophone Alliance, Pi Kappa Lambda (ΠΚΛ) National Music Honor Society, and Sigma Alpha Iota (ΣΑΙ) International Music Fraternity. She is the President of the Sigma Alpha Iota Las Vegas Alumnae Chapter and founding director of both the Las Vegas Saxophone Day and Las Vegas Clarinet Day.
O’Connor is a Vandoren Artist-Clinician and performs exclusively on Vandoren and Yamaha products. She is also an endorsing artist for Meridian Winds’ Center Brace Resonance Weights and Ergonomic Heavy Mass Saxophone Neck Screws.
Mr. Bradley is the Band Director at Tarkanian Middle School in Las Vegas, Nevada. Before teaching at Tarkanian, he was the band director at Cannon Junior High School for seven years. Under his direction, ensembles at both Tarkanian and Cannon have consistently earned “Superior” ratings at music festivals in Las Vegas. He currently serves as the brass coach for the Las Vegas Youth Orchestras Symphonic Band, Philharmonic, and Brass Choir. Mr. Bradley has served as a CCSD Middle School Honor Band chairperson since 2015 and also served as the Southern Nevada Band Association President from 2018-2020.
Mr. Bradley holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas where he studied euphonium with Stephen Kunzer and David Holben. He regularly performs in various venues throughout Las Vegas as a member of the Las Vegas Brass Band and Desert Winds.
DIRECTOR OF BRASS