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AMEA 2016 Clinicians All-State Middle School Jazz Band Clinician

Mr. David Allinder will be directing the middle school jazz band. Mr. Allinder is the band director at Shades Valley High School in Birmingham where his symphonic, marching, and jazz bands have received statewide and national acclaim. Mr. Allinder was previously the band director at Gresham Middle School in Birmingham where he had a tremendously successful program. He is an active bass player throughout the Birmingham area. He holds a bachelors and masters degree from the University of Alabama. David was a 2009 district finalist for state teacher of the year. He is a member of the Phi Beta Mu honorary band fraternity and the National Band Association. David currently resides in McCalla, Alabama with his wife Jennifer and their children, Tanner and Mackenzie.

Brian Balmages (b. 1975) is an active composer, conductor, producer, and performer. His fresh compositional ideas have resulted in a high demand for his wind, brass, and orchestral music throughout the world. He received his bachelor’s degree in music from James Madison University and his master’s degree from the University of Miami in Florida. Mr. Balmages’ compositions have been performed worldwide at conferences including the College Band Directors National and Regional Conferences, the Midwest Clinic, the International Tuba/Euphonium Conference, the International Trombone Festival, and the International Trumpet Guild Conference.. His music has been performed by members of leading orchestras including the St. Louis Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, National Symphony, and others. He has also had world premieres in prestigious venues such as Carnegie Hall and performances at the Macy’s Day Thanksgiving Day Parade and abroad. Currently, he is Director of Instrumental Publications for The FJH Music Company Inc. in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He resides in Baltimore with his wife, Lisa and their sons, Jacob and Collin.

Dr. Jeffrey Benson is currently Director of Choral Activities at San José State University in San José, California. Previously, Dr. Benson served as Director of Choral Activities and Fine Arts Department Chair at H-B Woodlawn Secondary Program in Arlington, Virginia. The Washington Post hails his choirs for singing “with an exquisite blend, subtlety of phrasing, confident musicianship and fully supported tone…that would be the envy of some professional ensembles." Benson received his Masters degree and his Doctorate in Choral Conducting/Music Education from The Florida State University and his Bachelors degree in Music Education from New York University.

Alabama Honor Choir Clinician

Tucker Biddlecombe is associate professor and director of choral activities at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music, where he serves as conductor of the Vanderbilt Chorale and Symphonic Choir, and teaches courses in choral conducting. In addition, he serves as director of Blair's five-year bachelor of music/teacher education degree (Ma5) program offered in conjunction with the Peabody College of Education at Vanderbilt. Biddlecombe holds a Ph.D. in music education and M.Mus. in choral conducting from Florida State University, and a B.Mus. in vocal performance and music education from the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam. He is a native of Buffalo, N.Y., and resides in Nashville with his wife, Mary Biddlecombe, who is artistic director of the Blair Children’s Chorus program.

George R. Boulden holds the rank of Associate Professor of Music and is the Associate Director of Bands at the University of Kentucky, where he serves as the conductor of the Symphony Band. Additionally, he teaches conducting, music technology, and supervises student teachers. Previously, he taught for nine years in the public schools of South Carolina and Florida, and was the recipient of the ASBDA-Stanbury Award as the outstanding young band director in Florida -and- the Southeastern region of the United States. In 2011 George was selected as the Kentucky Music Educators Association College/University Teacher of the Year. In February of 2014 George received the Outstanding Bandmaster Award from the Psi Chapter of Phi Beta Mu, international bandmasters fraternity. Active as an adjudicator for Bands of America, Drum Corps International, and Drum Corps Japan, George has also served as a clinician and guest conductor throughout the United States, Canada, and Japan. George also serves as editor of the Bluegrass Music News, the official journal of the Kentucky Music Educators Association. George resides in Richmond with his wife, Shelly, daughters, Jenna and Julianna, and sons, Bob and Jonah.

All-State Show Choir Choreographer

Kye Brackett is a native Floridian who, via Los Angeles, is currently residing in Las Vegas, Nevada, his self-proclaimed "City of Dreams". Throughout his 30 year career his many talents have taken his life into many areas of the entertainment field. As a singer/dancer Kye has been in Broadway, LA and West End productions of Five Guys Named Moe (for which he garnered a NAACP Image Award), Dreamgirls and Rent as well as the internationally acclaimed command performance for the Queen of England called, “Hey, Mr. Producer”. As a choreographer Kye has choreographed for The Miss America Pageant, Walt Disney World, The Muppets, and Holland America Cruise Lines. He also choreographed and starred in the musical revue “Could It Be Magic”, the Barry Manilow Songbook which played at The Mercury Theater in Chicago, Recently Kye toured with Manilow in his “Final Farewell” tour in which he served as both background vocalist and staging director.

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