PERCUSSION

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Jon Brill

Mr. Brill is a native Nevadan. In 1999, Mr. Brill earned a Bachelors of Music Education Degree from the University of Nevada – Reno where he studied percussion performance, conducting, and music education. In 2017 Mr. Brill completed a Masters Degree in Music Performance, Composition.

Mr. Brill has composed works for Band, Orchestra, Choir, Percussion Ensembles, and also for an eclectic assortment of smaller chamber groups. His composition “In the Dark Shadows of the Moon,” was featured at the 2016 new music reading session at the prestigious Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago Illinois. He currently has several pieces published through GPG music publications.

In addition to performing with the Reno Wind Symphony, Mr. Brill has performed with The Reno Philharmonic Orchestra, Hickman Brass Ensemble, Reno Municipal Band, and the Reno Chamber Orchestra. In his free time, he likes to travel, enjoys the outdoors, loves to run, is an avid San Francisco Giants Baseball fan, and loves to spend time playing with his awesome dogs, Roscoe and Thor.

Kevin Freels

Kevin Freels is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area. While he studied Computer Science at the University of Nevada, Reno, he was also a member of the UNR Marching Band, Wind Ensemble, and Symphonic Band under Dr. McGrannahan. He was part of the UNR Percussion Ensemble, and a Counselor for the Lake Tahoe Music Camp for four years.

 

Kevin kept his musical involvement since college going with playing drums for several bands, learning the Ukulele, and leading the Drum Section and marching Snare Drum in the Lamorinda Pick-up Band for the last six years. His real career in Information Technology was filled with working for companies such as The University of California Berkeley, Sendmail, and Walt Disney Feature Animation as a Senior Systems Administrator, and Saint Marys College and Sendmail, Inc. as Director of Technology.

 

Kevin moved back to Reno in 2020 to marry Josian Zdunich-Freels and subsequently inherited three horses and two cats. In return, she inherited two dogs and two teenagers. All of them live in Sparks.

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Jim Heller

Jim Heller grew up in San Diego where he matriculated to San Diego State University after graduating from high school. Though a piano major, he also played saxophone and clarinet in various university ensembles and sang in choral groups. Ultimately, his passion for teaching led him to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Education.

Later moving to San Bernardino County, he completed requirements for a California Teaching Credential at California State University San Bernardino and embarked on a 24 year career teaching music in public schools. During his career, Jim also found time to earn a Master of Arts Degree in Instrumental Conducting from Southern Oregon University that served him well in his profession.

​After retiring, he and his wife Helen relocated to Reno where he continues to teach and perform as a pianist, instrumentalist and vocalist. He has been a member of the Reno Wind Symphony since 2012, and also plays in the Reno Municipal Band.

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Earline McGrannahan

Earline McGrannahan graduated from Utah State University where she studied with Max Dalby, William Ramsey and Dean Madsen.  She was honored as the Nevada Music Educator of the Year in 2000. 

 

She began her teaching career in Melbourne, Australia where she designed, developed and initiated music programs in multiple high schools.  In the Reno area, she taught band, choir, jazz band, music appreciation and guitar before retiring after 25 years. Her bands and choirs received numerous awards and invitations to perform.  Her award winning Reno High School Marching Band was invited to and performed in the New Years Day Parade in London, England. 

 

Since her retirement from the district she was the primary care giver to two of her grand children. While they were young she worked as an instructor with ‘Step into Music’ teaching music to children 18 months to 3 years old.    

 

Earline presently performs as a clarinetist with the Reno Wind Symphony and the RWS woodwind quintet. She has been invited to perform with the Reno Pops Orchestra, The Ruby Mountain Symphony and the Pinkerton Nutcracker Ballet orchestra.  She also performs with and produces practice recordings for the Nevada Gay Men’s Chorus. She is in her 13th year as music faculty at Truckee Meadows Community College.  More than anything else, Earline loves being Nana to Owen, Kaili, Emi, Gage and Gracy.

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