Musicians & Music

Meet the extraordinary men and women of Northshore Concert Band who have dedicated their lives to making music!

DEBBIE DURHAM

Debbie Durham

Debbie Durham plays the Clarinet and has been with the Northshore Concert Band since 1979. She is a retired band director and lives in Mundelein.

When and why did you start playing?  I started playing when I was 10 years old.

What do you enjoy most about playingI enjoy playing because it challenges me.  It challenges me cognitively, physically, and emotionally.  It is the interaction of these aspects that drew me into music as a profession.  It continues to hold this mystique for me all these many years later.

Do you have a favorite musical memory?  One of my most favorite musical memories was playing “The FInal Covenant” with John Paynter conducting.  The sheer richness of sound and emotional context was almost overwhelming.  I remember seeing tears in JPP’s eyes.  Just an awesome experience.

What are your musical influences?  My early mentors were my band director, Jimmy (Scooby) Burns and my clarinet teacher, Curtis Craver.  My undergraduate musical influences were Raymond Gariglio (conductor and clarinetist) and John Weigand (clarinetist).  In graduate school, my greatest influences were John Paynter and Clark Brody.  I continue to be influenced by John Lynch, Mallory Thompson, and other fine musicians that I meet through the Northshore Concert Band.

Who was your most influential music teacher?  It is difficult to just pick one.  For clarinet, my most influential teacher was Clark Brody, who I studied with at Northwestern.  For almost everything else, it would be Barbara Buehlman, whom I affectionately called Auntie Barb.  She was my first boss and mentor.

Does anyone in your family play music?  My brother, who passed away in 2016, also was a musician.  He played guitar and sang. 

What’s on your iPod?  I listen to music when I work out so it is a very eclectic mix.  I have Weather Report; Earth, Wind, and Fire; Eric Clapton; Joni Mitchell; Black Crowes; Take 6; The Beatles; Bruno Mars; Samuel Barber; Sting, Bach, Philip Glass, Berlin Philharmonic, Bobby Caldwell…

Do you have any advice for young musicians?  Practice, listen, observe, and learn.  I can’t say enough about practicing.  It is a mantra for me.  Being recently retired I am relishing in the opportunity to extend my practice time and play with several different types of ensembles.  I love listening to music of all types.  It is important to expand your musical horizons by broadening your listening repertoire.  When I go to conventions or clinic, I like going to rehearsals almost more than the performances.  Watching a great conductor work through a composition and the interaction between conductor and ensemble is very interesting and instructive to me.  I always think you can learn from every experience. Always be open to taking something away

What makes performing with Northshore Concert Band different than performing with other groups? The caliber of conductor and musicians in the group and their commitment to excellence makes this very different from other groups. 

List three words to describe the Northshore Concert Band Dedicated, challenging, evolving

Please add anything else that you would like our audience to know about you. I am a retired band director.  I have taught elementary, middle school, and high school band.  I also taught AP Music Theory.  In my retirement, I am enjoying photography with my husband, Ralph.
Learn more about the Northshore Concert Band at http://www.northshoreband.org

Follow this blog to receive more informative and entertaining interviews of Northshore Concert Band members in this Musicians & Music series!

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Musicians & Music

Meet the extraordinary men and women of Northshore Concert Band who have dedicated their lives to making music!

KELLEY GOSSLER

Kelley Gossler

Kelley Gossler plays the Clarinet and has been with the Northshore Concert Band since 2011. She is a music teacher and lives in Chicago.

When and why did you start playing?  I started playing in 5th grade because almost everyone joined band!

What do you enjoy most about playing?  It’s fun, I love working towards a bigger goal and hearing everything come together.

Do you have a favorite musical memory? Too many to choose from!!!!

Who was your most influential music teacher?  It’s difficult to choose just one teacher! My first greatest influence was my high school band director, Mr. Bixby. He made music incredibly fun and pushed our band to play at a very high level which was very satisfying. Another incredible influence has been Dr. Thompson! She was my mentor during my graduate degree at Northwestern and has proven to be an incredible teacher and role model.

Do you have any advice for young musicians? Learning an instrument takes a lot of work! Keep on trying, ask for help, listen to great performers, and never give up! And of course, make sure you’re always having fun and enjoying what you’re doing.

What makes performing with Northshore Concert Band different than performing with other groups?  My two favorite things about Northshore Concert Band is our commitment to excellence and the wonderful camaraderie within the band.  

List three words to describe the Northshore Concert Band  Friends, music, challenge

 

Learn more about the Northshore Concert Band at http://www.northshoreband.org

Follow this blog to receive more informative and entertaining interviews of Northshore Concert Band members in this Musicians & Music series!

 

Musicians & Music

Meet the extraordinary men and women of Northshore Concert Band who have dedicated their lives to making music!

KRISTEN HANNA

Kristen Hanna

Kristen Hanna plays the Flute and has been with the Northshore Concert Band since 2012. She is a Band Director and lives in Park Ridge, Illinois.

When and why did you start playing? I started playing the flute in the fifth grade. I am the third generation flutist in my family following in the footsteps of my grandfather and my uncle. I grew up hearing the flute and always knew that I wanted to play it as well.

What do you enjoy most about playing? Music is my passion, and I love playing the flute! When I am making music my instrument is an extension of me. Being a musician is a very special thing because making music allows us to express ourselves in a very unique way.

Who was your most influential music teacher? I have had many music teachers since 1990, and three of them have influenced me tremendously. They are, Barbara Saks (my very private flute teacher), and Doug Schuler & Bob Rzeszutko (my junior high band directors). All three of them encouraged me, challenged me, and supported me. I am proud to now be able to call them colleagues.

Does anyone in your family play music? Both of my brothers still actively play the instruments that they started in the fifth grade too!

What’s on your iPod? I love singer songwriters, and my favorites are Carole King, James Taylor, Sara Bareilles, Ben Folds, and Simon and Garfunkel.

Do you have any advice for young musicians? Keep music a part of your life for your lifetime! Whether it’s being a performing musician or an audience member, keep it with you.

What makes performing with Northshore Concert Band different than performing with other groups? All of the musicians in the NCB are there because they love their instrument and their life wouldn’t feel complete without being able to play their instrument in an ensemble. That is special.

List three words to describe the Northshore Concert Band. Challenging, Engaging, Necessary

Please add anything else that you would like our readers to know about you.  I teach middle school band, and I enjoy spending time outdoors with my husband and daughter.

 

Learn more about the Northshore Concert Band at www.northshoreband.org

Follow this blog to receive more informative and entertaining interviews of Northshore Concert Band members in this Musicians & Music series!