Bearkat Marching Band Faculty and Staff

Associate Director of Bands
Director of the Bearkat Marching Band 
Associate Professor of Music

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Brian Gibbs is the Associate Director of Bands, Director of the Bearkat Marching Band and Associate Professor of Music at Sam Houston State University. He is the conductor of the Symphonic Band and teaches courses in music education. He previously taught at Texas Christian University and in the Birdville, Cypress-Fairbanks, Carrollton-Farmers Branch and Richardson public schools.

Dr. Gibbs holds a PhD in education from the Walden University Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership. He holds a B.M. degree from Southern Methodist University and a M.S. degree in Business and Human Relations from Amberton University. He has presented workshops on music education research and student leadership development at the music educators association conventions in Texas, California, Tennessee, and Arizona, as well as the College Band Directors National Association Convention, the College Band Directors National Association Athletic/Marching Band Symposium and the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic.

Dr. Gibbs is active in the Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, National Association of Music Educators, College Band Directors National Association, Performance Studies International, and Association for Moral Education. He also serves as Chairman of the Board for World-Wide Concurrent Premieres Commissioning Fund, Inc., and is the Editor-in-Chief for Praxis, the online journal for SHSU's Center for Music Education.


Matthew McInturf
Director of Bands
Professor of Music

Matthew McInturf is Professor of Music, Director of Bands and Director of the Center for Music Education at Sam Houston State University. He previously taught at Florida International University and in the public schools of Richardson, Texas. He holds degrees from the University of North Texas and the University of Houston and a doctorate in conducting at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. He has studied conducting with Anshel Brusilow, Eddie Green and Eugene Migliaro Corporon and composition with Michael Horvit and Darrell Handel.

Throughout his career, Dr. McInturf's ensembles have been recognized for their musical accomplishment. He has performed throughout the United States and recordings of his performances have been broadcast on National Public Radio. In 1991, conducting the J. J. Pearce High School Band, he performed an acclaimed concert at the Mid-West Clinic, with trombone soloist Christian Lindberg. He has performed at the Texas Music Educators Association Convention and at the Southwest Regional Convention of the College Band Directors National Association with the SHSU Wind Ensemble.

An advocate of new music, Dr. McInturf has continued to commission new works for wind ensemble. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the World-Wide Concurrent Premieres Commissioning Fund, Inc., a non-profit corporation that works internationally to form consortiums to commission significant new works from contemporary composers. He is a Past President of the Texas Bandmasters Association and is a region officer in the Texas Music Educators Association. He is active in the College Band Directors National Association, the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensemble and the College Music Society. Dr. McInturf was named Bandmaster of the Year by the Texas Bandmasters Association in 2017.

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Assistant Director of Bands
Associate Director of the Bearkat Marching Band
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Darla McBryde is the Assistant Director of Bands and the Associate Director of the Bearkat Marching Band.  A native of Fort Worth, Texas, Ms. McBryde previously served as the Director of Bands and Fine Arts Department Chair at Timber Creek High School in Keller ISD, as the Assistant Band Director at Keller High School, and as an Assistant Band Director and Colorguard Director at Flower Mound High School in Lewisville ISD. 

During her seventeen years of teaching high school concert bands of all levels, her ensembles earned twenty-two consecutive UIL Concert and Sight-reading First Division Awards.   In 2016, the Timber Creek High School Wind Symphony was awarded the opportunity to perform at the Western International Band Clinic.  Other concert highlights include, the Timber Creek High School Saxophone Ensemble Showcase performance at the 2019 Texas Music Educators Association Conference, and the Keller Chamber Winds Performance at the 2012 Midwest Clinic. 

Ms. McBryde has enjoyed sharing her love of the marching arts with her students.  Under her direction, the Timber Creek High School Marching Band flourished, earning Superior Ratings at all UIL Marching Contests and becoming consistent finalists at Bands of America Texas Regionals and at UIL Area Marching Contests.  Her JV and Varsity colorguards at Flower Mound High School were perennial medalists at the North Texas Colorguard Association Championships from 2002 to 2008, and they were regular Scholastic A finalists and medalists at Winterguard International Regionals.  In 2008, the Flower Mound High School Colorguard earned fifth place in Scholastic A at the Winterguard International World Championships.

Ms. McBryde holds a Master of Music degree in Instrumental Conducting from Stephen F. Austin State University and a Bachelor of Music Education from Baylor University where she studied bassoon.  Her performance experience includes performing in the Baylor University Wind Ensemble and Symphony Orchestra, Chamber ensembles, and Waco Symphony.  Ms. McBryde also performed with the 1999 Phantom Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps as a colorguard member.

Ms. McBryde enjoys serving as a Marching Band, Concert Band, and Chamber Ensemble adjudicator, and she has presented clinics at the Texas Bandmasters Association Convention, the Midwest Clinic, and the Women Band Directors International Convention.  Her favorite topics include:  Self Care Tips for Busy Music Directors, and Colorguard and Movement Basics for Band Directors. 

Personal accolades earned throughout her career include, Timber Creek’s Creative Impact Award and Fine Arts Teacher of the Year, Flower Mound High School’s Teacher of the Month and Principal’s Shining Star, and Lewisville ISD’s Golden Apple Award. Professional affiliations include Phi Beta Mu, Women Band Directors International, Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, Texas Association of College Teachers, Mu Phi Epsilon.

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John Lane
Director of Percussion Studies
Associate Professor of Music

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Dr. John Lane is an active percussion soloist, chamber musician, composer, educator, and has performed throughout the Americas and Japan. Recent credits include performances with his percussion trio (with Christopher Deane and Brian Zator), Pulsus, at the Hokuto International Music Festival in Japan, a concerto performance with the National Symphony of Panama, an appearance on the Van Cliburn Foundation's concert series, Modern at the Modern, at the Fort Worth Museum of Modern Art, and presentations at the Percussive Arts Society International Conventions in 2003, 2004, 2008, and 2009.

Currently, John is Director of Percussion Studies and Associate Professor at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas where he teaches applied percussion and directs the Sam Houston Percussion Group and SHSU Steel Band. Prior to his appointment at SHSU, John taught as a lecturer at the University of Wyoming and as a teaching fellow at the University of North Texas and the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

Commissioning new works for percussion and creative collaborations are an integral part of John's work. Over the last few years, he has been connected with a number of composers including Peter Garland, Emiliano Pardo, Mara Helmuth, Michael Fiday, Christopher Deane, John Luther Adams, Kyle Gann, Michael Byron, Wen Hui Xie, Jude Traxler, Kazuaki Shiota and Alex Kotch.

His compositions have been featured on the Sonic Explorations concert series, the MUSICX new music festival at the Cincinnati-College Conservatory of Music; the Loeffler New Music Symposium at Chico State University in California; and at the Cincinnati Contemporary Art Center. One of his works, Sparrow Song, was recently published in Notations 21 (New York: Mark Batty Publishers, 2008). John has several on-going interdisciplinary collaborations with writers Ann McCutchan and Todd Boss, percussionist Allen Otte, and has created original music for choreographer/dancer Hillary Bryan.

John has recorded for the Klavier and GIA record labels with the North Texas Wind Symphony and can be heard on the television series, Wyoming Voices (produced by Wyoming Public Television). Articles, interviews, and educational writing have been published in Windsong, 21st-Century Music, Texas Band Master's Review and Percussive Notes. John is also a former marching member of the Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps.

John has presented clinics and masterclasses on topics including contemporary music, orchestral percussion, and jazz drum set at the following institutions/venues: Danilo Perez Jazz Foundation, National Institute of Culture in Panama, Texas Music Educator's Association Convention, Texas Band Master's Association Convention, Percussive Arts Society Days of Percussion (Wyoming, Louisiana, and Texas), University of Colorado, Colorado State University, University of Wyoming, University of Arizona, Chico State University, Southern Oregon University, Stephen F. Austin State University, University of Hawaii, Oberlin College Conservatory of Music, and the University of Mississippi.

John holds a DMA in percussion performance from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, a MM from the University of North Texas, and a BM from Stephen F. Austin State University. John is also a Yamaha Performing Artist and an Artist for Innovative Percussion and Evans Drumheads.


Brian Graiser
Adjunct Percussion Instructor

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Dr. Brian S. Graiser is a contemporary percussionist, composer, and teacher, and currently serves as the Adjunct Instructor of Percussion and Marching Percussion Director at Sam Houston State University, where he teaches applied lessons and Percussion Methods and directs the SHSU University Percussion Ensemble and Bearkat Marching Band Drumline. His musical exploits are highly diverse, although he takes pride in being at the forefront of advocacy for extended-range vibraphone as a performer, composer, and researcher.

Originally from Marietta, Georgia, his performances have taken him up and down the U.S., Canada, Australia, Panama, France, Italy, and China. Recent performances of note include touring with the REFLECT harp + percussion duo, the world premiere of his Concerto No. 1 ("Lulu") for Four-Octave Vibraphone, and the world premiere of his ​From Nothing, Everything for solo vibraphone at the Festival Alfredo Saint Malo in Panama City, Panama. He has commissioned new works by several composers including Stuart Saunders Smith, Halim El-Dabh, John Serry, and Christien LeDroit, and has performed with groups such as the Cincinnati Chamber Opera, the National Ballet of Canada Orchestra, Oakville Chamber Orchestra, Toronto Percussion Ensemble, Georgia Ensemble Theatre, and many others. Recently, Brian has been a featured soloist with groups such as the Cincinnati Pops, the Cincinnati Collaborative Ringing Project, and the PAS-Panama Summer Percussion Ensemble. Brian is one half of the REFLECT harp + percussion duo along with his wife Alaina, and is also a member of the Arasmas Percussion Group and the CCM Contemporary Chamber Quartet.

Brian is no less active as a composer; he has written works for the PAS-Panama Summer Percussion Ensemble, the TorQ Percussion Quartet, the Toronto Youth Wind Ensemble, the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra, the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Percussion Ensemble, the University of Georgia Percussion Ensemble and Contemporary Chamber Ensemble, the University of Toronto Percussion Ensemble, and a number of artists across the U.S. and Canada. Brian currently serves on the Composition Committee for the Percussive Arts Society.

As a clinician, Brian has presented on a wide range of topics such as Vibraphone History and Repertoire, Introduction to American Drumline, Composing for Harp and/or Percussion, the Percussion Works of Franco Donatoni, and more. Recently, Brian presented clinics and masterclasses at the Universidad de Panama/Instituto Nacional de Musica, the University of North Carolina-Pembroke, the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Jacksonville State University, and the University of Tennessee.

Prior to his appointment at SHSU, Brian served as an Adjunct Instructor at the University of Cincinnati, where he directed the Cincinnati Youth Percussion Collective, taught applied lessons through the College-Conservatory of Music Preparatory Department, and coached the percussion section of the Cincinnati Youth Wind Ensemble (whom he accompanied on their Summer 2016 Australia Tour). Other teaching experiences include earlier Graduate Teaching Assistantships at the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and the University of Toronto, teaching the general music classes at the Leaves of Learning K-12 school in Cincinnati, and serving as the classroom teacher and program director of the Oconee County High School (GA) percussion program from 2005-2008.

Brian earned the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in percussion performance at CCM, having studied with Allen Otte, Jim Culley, and Rusty Burge. He holds his MM degree in performance from the University of Toronto and his BMus degrees in composition and performance from the University of Georgia, having studied with Russell Hartenberger, Beverley Johnston, John Rudolph, Tony McCutchen, Arvin Scott, Leonard Ball, and Adrian Childs. He has also received significant additional compositional training from Michael Colgrass, Stuart Saunders Smith, and Christos Hatzis.

Brian is an artist-endorser of Dream Cymbals and Gongs, and is also the proud owner of a DeMorrow 4-octave vibraphone. His compositions are available through Keyboard Percussion Publications, Alfonce Productions, and self-publication (distributed through Frontier Percussion).


Tim LeBlanc
Color Guard Instructor

Tim LeBlanc

Tim LeBlanc was born and raised in Lafayette, Louisiana where he graduated from Acadiana High School. He attended the University of Louisiana at Lafayette where he studied music education, was drum major of The Pride of Acadiana marching band, studied horn where he was principal in the UL Wind Ensemble, and was a founding member of the Echelon Brass Quintet. He currently plays horn in The Woodlands Concert Band in The Woodlands, TX. Tim is an Alumni of the Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps where he marched the horn line. Soon after, he started his colorguard career and began teaching in the Lafayette area.

Tim is the current Instructor for the guard programs at Sam Houston State University and is also the Drill writer and designer for the SHSU Bearkat Marching Band. Tim is the past color guard caption head for the Louisiana Stars Drum and Bugle Corps. Tim has taught and currently designs and choreographs for many successful groups around the country including WGI World Champion, Code Black Winterguard.

Tim resides in the Houston area where he is a flight attendant, is married, and has two awesome dogs.


Twirler Instructor
Kelley McCormick

Kelley McCormick is from Slidell, Louisiana where she began her twirling career at the age of six years old.  Training under twirling legends Brooks Going and Cageline Crawford, Kelley competed for twelve years with the National Baton Twirling Association, earning titles such as Miss Majorette of Louisiana.

Kelley holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Northwestern State University and was a majorette in the Spirit of Northwestern Marching Band.  After graduation, she obtained her Property and Casualty insurance license in Louisiana and Texas, working for Allstate Insurance Company.

Re-locating to Bentonville, Arkansas, Kelley became the founder of the Benton County Belles Twirling team and Feature Twirler and Winter Guard Coordinator for Shiloh Christian High School, in Springdale, Arkansas.

Baton twirling as always been a great passion of Kelley’s, passing her legacy on to her three daughters.   When she is not coaching at Sam, Kelley enjoys judging and teaching private baton lessons to twirlers of all ages.


Graduate Teaching Assistant, Bearkat Marching Band

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Emmy Ramos is currently a Graduate Teaching Assistant pursuing a Master of Music degree in Wind Conducting at Sam Houston State University under Dr. Matthew McInturf. Before this position, Ms. Ramos served four years as the Associate Director of Bands at Liberty Junior High School in the Richardson Independent School District. While at Liberty, she directed the Concert Band, assisted with the Intermediate and Symphonic Bands, and taught several beginner band classes at Liberty's feeder elementary campuses. Under the direction of Ms. Ramos, the Concert Band received superior ratings at the UIL Concert & Sight-Reading Contest, along with First Division and "Best in Class" awards at local area festivals. 

Ms. Ramos grew up in the Houston area and graduated cum laude from Sam Houston State University with a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education. While at Sam Houston State University, Ms. Ramos studied clarinet under Dr. Patricia Card and Dr. Dmitry Perevertailenko. Her performance experiences include principal clarinet in the Sam Houston State Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, and several chamber ensembles. Ms. Ramos was also a three-year member of the Bearkat Marching Band, where she served as a clarinet section leader. 

Ms. Ramos spent two summers at the MasterWorks Festival performing with the Philharmonic and Symphony Orchestras. At MasterWorks, she studied clarinet under Dr. Harry Hill and Karen Hill. 

Ms. Ramos owes gratitude to Richardson ISD, the entire "Team Berkner," wth special appreciation for Chris Pineda, Lynne Jackson, Jason Schayot, and Frank Troyka for their mentorship.  Ms. Ramos's professional affiliations include membership in the Texas Music Educators Association and the Texas Bandmasters Association. She remains active in her profession by attending and presenting to young teachers at workshops such as Southern Methodist University's The Art of Teaching Music and Sam Houston State University's Teaching the Middle S


Katie Zolvinski
Graduate Teaching Assistant, Bearkat Marching Band

Katie Zolvinski

Katie Zolvinski has been teaching for eight years and is excited to be pursuing her Masters in Wind Conducting at Sam.  Previously, she was the head band director at Madison Consolidated High School in Madison, Indiana, where she taught and directed the Concert Band, Advanced Band, Pep Band, Marching Band, and winter color guard.  The Madison Band Program saw exponential growth of 50% in only two years. The marching band made its first ever Indiana Scholastic State Finals appearance in 2018. In 2019 the Marching Cubs placed 2nd in music and 3rd overall, the highest place in the band's history.

Prior to her position at MCHS, Ms. Zolvinski spent time in Las Vegas, Nevada at Ed W. Clark High School. At Clark High School, Ms. Zolvinski taught two concert bands, co-taught the marching band, & jazz band, and assisted with the orchestra.  Her concert bands \received perfect scores at concert band festival, while the marching band placed fifth in the Marching Band Open Series Finals and 3rd in music. She also assisted with the Clark High School Orchestra in their preparations for The Mid-West Clinic and facilitated the winter color guard program.

Ms. Zolvinski worked at Oolitic Middle School for four years where she taught band, choir, and orchestra. While there the Oolitic Band received a gold rating at ISSMA concert band festival in 2015 and a Gold with distinction in 2016. 

She is and has been an active oboe player in several ensembles including the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra, the Southern Indiana Wind Ensemble, The College of Southern Nevada Symphony Orchestra, and The Twin Cities Concert Band. 

Ms. Zolvinski graduated from Ball State University in 2012 with her Bachelors of Science in Music Education and is a native of La Porte, Indiana. In her free time she enjoys  traveling, trying new food, and spending time with Nacho, her orange tabby cat.


Colin Peters
Graduate Teaching Assistant, Bearkat Marching Band

Colin Peters

Colin Peters is pursuing a Master's Degree in Wind Conducting at Sam Houston State University, having completed his fourth year of teaching public school band. Collin served as the Assistant Band Director at York Junior High in Conroe ISD, where he conducted the Symphonic band and Concert II/III bands. He also assisted with the Wind Ensemble and other concert bands at York as well as with the marching band at Grand Oaks High School. Under the direction of Mr. Peters, the Symphonic Band and Concert II/III Bands received superior ratings at the UIL Concert & Sight-Reading Contest, along with First Division and "Best in Class" awards at local area festivals.

Mr. Peters grew up in Dickinson, TX, just south of Houston. He graduated from the University of Houston with a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education. While at UH, he studied clarinet under Chester Rowell and Randy Griffin. His performance experiences include playing clarinet and bass clarinet in the UH Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra, and Opera Orchestra.  He performed with the University of Houston Wind Ensemble at the Texas Music Educators Association, The Midwest Clinic and Convention, and the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles Convention. Mr. Peters was also a five-year member of the "Spirit of Houston" marching band, where he served as Drum Major for three of those years.

With his time outside of teaching, Mr. Peters has played in the Woodlands Concert Band, worked with marching bands and leadership teams, and judged solo and ensemble contests around the Houston area. During the summer breaks, he attends Texas area workshops, including the Sam Houston State University's Teaching the Middle School Band. Mr. Peters is a member of the Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, Tau Beta Sigma, and Phi Mu Alpha. He currently resides in The Woodlands, TX, with his cat Walter and dog Louie. In his free time, Mr. Peters enjoys traveling, running, eating good food, and taking care of his plants.