Student Isaac Lopez playing saxophoneStudent Jacey Mayronne in a Master Class with David ShifrinStudent Jaqueline Rocamora playing bassoon in band rehearsal
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Woodwinds

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CONTACT US

Woodwind Department
209.946.2708
Nicolasa Kuster
Program Director for Woodwind Instruments
Conservatory of Music
3601 Pacific Avenue
Stockton, CA 95211
nkuster@pacific.edu

Through a rigorous and nurturing education, Pacific prepares woodwind students to succeed in a wide range of career possibilities, including orchestral and performing careers and careers in teaching or broader entrepreneurial pursuits. The Pacific Woodwind Faculty are committed to post-graduation success, and nurturing relationships continue as the graduate moves into the world of work. The Pacific Arts Woodwind Quintet performs often, giving Pacific students an opportunity to observe their teachers on a regular basis.

A significant characteristic of Woodwind study at Pacific is the one-on-one nurturing and personal attention given by the faculty to each student in weekly lessons. This is reflected in Pacific policy: performance majors get two lessons a week their junior and senior years, and all music majors receive lessons from the primary professor. Excellent staff pianists provide ample opportunity to hone collaborative skills and are available to all music students. In addition to private lessons, students have weekly opportunities to perform with and for their colleagues. These opportunities include Studio Classes, Chamber Music Class, the Orchestral Repertoire and Audition Preparation Seminar, as well as Pacific Solo Class. In these settings, Pacific provides learning environments where students learn in a group setting about the fundamentals of their instruments and the varied aspects of performing.

Each woodwind studio also offers instruction on various auxiliary instruments, skills and techniques such as:

· Flute Studio--piccolo and other auxiliary flutes, flute choir
· Clarinet Studio--bass and Eb clarinets
· Saxophone Studio-- all saxophones and saxophone quartets
· Oboe Studio - reed making and English horn
· Bassoon Studio -- reed making and contra bassoon

Ensemble participation is an integral part of the woodwind experience at Pacific. All wind students audition for placement each year in the Pacific Symphony Orchestra, Symphonic Wind Ensemble, and Concert Band. Because Pacific is primarily undergraduate school, each woodwind performance major benefits from rotating sections and leadership experience.

A hallmark of the Conservatory is the rigorous and intensive Chamber Music Program. The faculty believe that participation in chamber music is key to success on one's instrument. Because of the uniqueness of our program, the woodwind student will play with many unusual mixed groupings and different combos before graduating, including mixing with strings and piano. The student also benefits from a rotation of coaches drawn from the entire performance faculty.

Studying in a small Conservatory nestled on the beautiful campus of an excellent liberal arts college allows the student to engage in the rigor of a conservatory training while benefitting from broader intellectual stimulation and inspiration. The faculty believe that development of critical thinking and social skills gained from a liberal arts education can greatly enhance a musician's ability to be creative while maneuvering the complexities of making a life in music. Pacific students also benefit from the proximity to the Bay Area, and the wonderful city of San Francisco with the world class San Francisco Symphony, Opera, and Ballet offering experiential learning opportunities off campus. Guest artists frequently come to campus.

Woodwind Faculty

Nicolasa Kuster, Program Director for Woodwind Instruments
Assistant Professor of Bassoon, 2008
B.A., B.M., Oberlin College Conservatory of Music.
Student of George Sakakeeny and Bruce Grainger.

Mathew T. Krejci
Lecturer in Flute, 1989.
M.M., Indiana University, 1978;
B.M.Ed., Indiana University, 1973.
Student of James Pellerite and Maurice Sharp.

Thomas F. Nugent
Lecturer in Oboe, 1990.
B.M., San Francisco Conservatory of Music, 1984.
Student of Marc Lifschey.

Patricia Shands
Professor of Clarinet, 1995.
D.M.A., Rice University, 2001;
M.M., University of Southern California, 1985;
B.M., Peabody Conservatory of Music, 1981.

Student of David Shifrin, Mitchell Lurie, and David Peck.

David Henderson
Lecturer in Saxophone, 2007.
B.M., University of Michigan; 
M.M., Juilliard School.
Student of William Fread, Larry Teal, Donald Sinta, Joe Allard and Jean-Marie Londeix.