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Introducing the 2020 Caballeros Brass Staff

The Hawthorne Caballeros are thrilled to announce their brass staff for the 2020 season!

Kyle Risch – Trumpet Technician

Kyle Risch, is in his fourth year as Band Director at West Chester East High School in West Chester, Pennsylvania. His responsibilities include direction of the Honors Wind Ensemble, Concert Band, Jazz Ensemble, Lab Jazz Band, and the West Chester East Marching Band. In his time the membership of East Bands has grown by nearly 50%.

Kyle is a graduate of West Chester University, receiving his Bachelor of Music Education degree in 2013 and his Master’s Degree in Wind Conducting in 2018. During his studies at WCU he has been fortunate to play in the university’s premier ensembles including the Wind Ensemble under the direction of Dr. Andrew Yozviak and the Criterions Jazz Ensemble lead by Dr. Marc Jacoby.

Upon completion of his undergraduate degree, Kyle started his career as one of two band directors in the Parsippany Troy Hills School District. Here he directed the Concert Band at the district’s two high schools and taught lessons to the brass and percussion studios. In addition, he also directed the Parsippany Hills High School Marching Band and arranged their 2014 show entitled “Lenny” featuring the music of Leonard Bernstein.

Outside of his professional teaching career, Kyle is actively involved in drum & bugle corps having taught at the Jersey Surf, Cadets2, and the Hawthorne Caballeros. Kyle also enjoys teaching private trumpet lessons and welcomes any students looking to begin their studies. Kyle’s professional affiliations include MENC, PMEA, NBA, NEA, PSEA, and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.

Michael Hamilton – Mellophone Technician

Michael Hamilton is an educator, conductor, composer and arranger living in the Northern New Jersey area.  Currently, Michael is the Instrumental Music Director at Union High School where he conducts the concert band, wind ensemble, string orchestra and jazz ensemble.  In addition, Michael is also the director of the Union High School marching band.

Prior to taking the helm at Union High School, Michael was the Band and Orchestra director at Burnet Middle School in Union, NJ where he conducted all instrumental ensembles and taught 6th and 7th-grade group lessons.

The marching arts have been a part of Michael’s life beginning in 1987 as a member of the North Rockland HS marching band.  After immediately falling in love with the activity, Michael went on to march with the Westchester Brassmen, the Raiders and the Cadets of Bergen County.  After aging out, Michael joined the staff of the Raiders where he was a major part of their success during the late 1990s and early 2000s. While Michael was on staff, the corps was a consistent DCI Open Class (Division III) finalist winning a silver medal in 2001.  While Michael was program coordinator and brass arranger, the Raiders won a DCI championship in 2005 and a bronze medal in 2006. Michael continued in this capacity through the 2010 season. Michael’s arrangements have been performed by marching bands throughout the tri-state area including Union High School’s 2014 USBANDS National Championship.

Alexander Sheetz- Baritone Technician

Alexander Sheetz is a Senior Music Education major, majoring on Euphonium, at West Chester University of Pennsylvania.

Alex has performed with the West Chester University Wind Symphony for 2 years, basketball band for 2 years, and has spent 4 years playing in the Incomparable Golden Ram Marching Band on Baritone, 2 of which as section leader. Alex has 2 years of Drum Corps experience with the Reading Buccaneers Drum and Bugle Corps (’17 ’18). Alex has also spent this past fall as the brass music instructor for the West Chester East High School Marching Band.

Outside of performance, Alex has served on multiple band executive boards while at West Chester University, including the Incomparable Golden Rams Marching Band (VP), 6th Man Basketball Band (VP), Kappa Kappa Psi – Eta Rho (VP), and the Swope Inter-Greek Music Organization (VP).

Jarrod Briley – Tuba Technician

Jarrod Briley is an active performer and educator from North Carolina living in the Hudson Valley area of New York. He is currently the principal tubist for The Orchestra Now, a 3-year pre-professional training orchestra and master’s degree program in Annandale-on-Hudson, NY. Prior to joining TON, he was an Advanced Performance Studies student at Bard College and previously earned a B.M in Music Performance from East Carolina University. Along with performing with orchestras such as TON and the Winston Salem Symphony, he maintains a varied schedule of chamber music and solo performances.

Jarrod’s passion for teaching equals his passion for performing. He has been a private lesson instructor in North Carolina and New York for the past 4 years and taught lessons to tubists for the NC Eastern All-District band in 2018. He has taught both visual and music at North Pitt High School and Northside High School, and currently serves as the visual designer for the Northside High School Marching Band. Jarrod was the tuba instructor for the 2019 Hawthorne Caballeros and is excited to return to the Cabs in 2020. He marched with Carolina Crown for their 2014 and 2015 seasons and was a member of the ECU Marching Pirates from 2014 to 2016, serving as a drum major for the 2016 season. He was also a member of the Mix-It-Up! cast at Busch Gardens Williamsburg during the summer of 2018.

When he isn’t performing or teaching, Jarrod enjoys hiking in the Catskills, cheering on his Packers, and getting plenty of exercise. He is also an avid beer and coffee drinker, and an amateur barbecue connoisseur.

Rick Brown – Brass Consultant

Ricardo T. Brown is a native of Portsmouth, VA. The second child of Ricardo Sr. and Terry Brown. He received his high school degree from Churchland High School where he was selected to All-District Band, All-State Band, and Virginia Honor Band. He was also a student in The Governors School of the Performing Arts under the baton of Mr. Ray Pancarowicz. He then went on to Norfolk State University in Norfolk, VA receiving his Bachelors and Master’s Degrees studying trumpet with Dr. Steve Carlson and Dr. Timmey Zachery. While at Norfolk State he was principal trumpet in the wind ensemble, Brass Quintet, as well as lead in the University Jazz Ensemble under Ms. Stephanie K. Sanders as well as a performance with Mr. Frank Foster, legendary jazz saxophonist. He then furthered his education at Cambridge College in Boston, MA pursuing a degree in Educational Administration.

Mr. Brown began his teaching career working under Mr. John Boyd as the Assistant Director at Princess Anne High School in 2005. He then moved on to W.E Waters, where he was previously a student in 2007. He was then made the graduate assistant for the Norfolk State University band program. After 7 great years at Waters, Mr. Brown was afforded the opportunity to join the staff at Prairie View A&M University as the Assistant Director of Bands, Band Business Manager and Adjunct Professor. Mr. Brown was later appointed the Associate Director of Bands. When not working with the amazing students at Prairie View, Mr. Brown works with numerous ensembles around the country including the 2016 World Champion Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps, the 2005 World Champion Cadets Drum and Bugle Corps, as well as numerous clinics and adjudicating engagements.

Mr. Brown has also performed with numerous ensembles including the Virginia Symphony, Virginia Beach Symphony, Fancy Pants Productions, The Right on Band, numerous churches, NASCAR, Houston Symphony, Ballet Afrique Cotton Club, and well as numerous performances and gigs across the country. In the marching idiom, Ricardo marched 5 years with Drum Corps International first in 1999 with The Crossmen then from Newark, Delaware for 1 season before moving on to The Cadets in 2001 staying there for 4 years. Mr. Brown also holds memberships in Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity of America, Tau Beta Sigma National Honorary Band Sorority, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Incorporated, Texas Music Educators Association and the Texas Jazz Educators’ Association. Previously, Mr. Brown was a member of the Virginia Music Educators Association. Mr. Brown has also had the opportunity to conduct many ensembles including the Portsmouth Public Schools All-City Elementary school band as well as one of the highlights of his career, which was having the opportunity to conduct The Band of Her Majesties Royal Marines with Tallwood High School in 2007.

At Prairie View, Mr. Brown worked with all the band ensembles as well as being the Director of the Universities Large and Small Jazz Ensemble. At the University of Connecticut, Mr. Brown will serve as the Associate Director of Bands. Mr. Brown Loves music and being able to help students grow in their matriculation through all institutions that he is associated with. He looks forward to assisting the band staff in moving the UCMB and all other ensembles he is associated with forward. Mr. Brown resides in Willington, CT with his wife, Tiffany, and their dog Hooch.

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