Charles Russell "Rusty" Briel has been professionally involved in music education for 38 years. During this time Rusty has worked with many marching and concert bands of varying size and experience levels. Prior to assuming the position of Executive Director of the Indiana State School Music Association, Rusty was on the staff at Center Grove High School where he served as the Director of Orchestras and on the Brass and Visual Staff of the Trojan Marching Band. Throughout his 15 year tenure as the Executive Director of ISSMA, Rusty became actively involved in the adjudication process and the training of judges for performance evaluation. Beyond his role as an educator, he has also been a performer in several Symphony Orchestras, Concert Bands, Jazz Ensembles, and Chamber Ensembles. He is currently active as a member of the Albuquerque Concert Band and the Ambush Trombone Ensemble, and teaches at Manual School in Albuquerque.
Visual Caption Head
Formerly of El Paso, Texas, Ziggy has been teaching, designing shows and teaching brass for over 15 year. Ziggy is a freelance trumpet player, professional salsa dancer/instructor as well as an avid disc golfer. He is currently both visual and brass caption head at Volcano Vista High School in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He marched two years with the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps where he was also a soloist, and most recently worked on visual staff with the Blue Stars and the Colts.
Color Guard Caption Head
Edwin Parker-McConnell is a New Mexico based music educator, colorguard instructor, choreographer, and consultant with over eight years of experience in the teaching field. His degree in Music Education is from the University of New Mexico. He has taught and written for various schools within the southwestern states, and has also written for Republic High School of Missouri. He experienced drum corps in 2010 with the Troopers, which proved to be an invaluable learning experience. Currently, Edwin resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico as the Associate Director of Bands and Color Guard Director at La Cueva High School, as well as a guard instructor for the University of New Mexico. Edwin believes that guard is not just about the competition, choreography, and other tangible elements that come along with it. It’s also about the passion, joy, and love that one develops for doing the activity that makes it so wonderful. This is at the foundation of all of his teaching.
Battery Caption Head
Daniel Reyes currently resides in El Paso with his wife Clarissa Reyes where he teaches at Logan Elementary School and performs with the El Paso Wind Symphony. Prior to teaching elementary school, he taught at Crystal City High School in South Texas. Additionally, Daniel also has been a percussion consultant and arranger at Jefferson High School and Franklin High School working extensively with both schools marching percussion sections over the past nine years.
Daniel graduated from the University of Texas at El Paso in 2014 with a bachelors of music education. While at UTEP, he was a member of various music ensembles. In 2011 he was the Front Ensemble section leader under the direction of Frank Gonzales. Daniel’s drum corps experience includes 4 seasons marching snare drum with Revolution (San Antonio, Tx) and Blue Knights (Denver, Co). He is most grateful for the life lessons spent under the leadership of great teachers such as Jeff Ausdemore, Chad Gibson, Doug Bush, and Tim Overturf.
As for the future, Daniel is excited to work with Arsenal Drum and Bugle Corps and build upon last season's success.
Front Ensemble Caption Head
William Kramer received his Bachelors of Music Performance in Percussion from the University of New Mexico and is currently pursuing his K-12 Music Education teaching licensure in the state of New Mexico. He has taught marching percussion at Rio Rancho High School for three and a half years and just started teaching percussion at West Mesa High School. He spent three years with the Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps.
Daniel Hunt holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music Education from the University of Texas at El Paso, and a Masters of Arts in Music Education from the University of Texas at Arlington. Daniel has performed with many ensembles throughout the state of Texas - the El Paso Symphony, the UTArlington Jazz Orchestra, Star City Percussion Ensemble, the UTEP Symphony, the UTEP Wind Symphony, the UTEP Drumline, and the UTEP Lab Band, to name a few. While completing his undergraduate work, Daniel performed with the Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps snareline in 2003, and aged out with the Blue Knights as the section leader in 2006. In addition to his performing experience, he also served as a snare technician for the WGI World Class Surround Sound percussion ensemble in 2008. He is currently serving as a snare technician for the WGI Independent A Sun City Sound percussion ensemble. Daniel has worked with many high schools around Texas including Waxahachie HS, Arlington Martin HS, Americas HS, Chapin HS, Montwood HS, and Pebble Hills HS, and has served as the battery arranger for several of these programs. Daniel currently resides in El Paso, Texas where he is the Associate Director of Bands for Pebble Hills High School, and the Director of Percussion for the Pebble Hills High School feeder pattern.
Josh O’Brien currently resides in El Paso. He began his marching career in high school, where
he first picked up marching tenors in 2010. Since then Josh has gone on to march Forte 2012,
Genesis in 2014, and he has also performed with ensembles from the University of Texas at El
Paso. Josh was the Tenor Tech at Franklin High school from 2013 to 2015 and assisted at
Jefferson High School during the summer of 2017.
Vincent Chaparro received his Bachelors of Music Education from the University of Texas at El Paso in 2013 and is currently teaching music at Campestre Elementary School and Socorro Middle School in El Paso, TX. While at UTEP, Vincent held many leadership roles in the percussion studio and marching band such as percussion manager, bass section leader and tenor section leader. In 2015 Vincent was the TMEA Middle School All-Region Symphonic Band Percussion Organizer in El Paso, TX. Over the past eight years he has worked with many percussion programs across El Paso and has been involved with percussion competitions such as the YISD Throwdown Percussion Competition. As a member of the percussion community in El Paso, Vincent has performed with various groups and ensembles throughout El Paso ranging from Steel Drum performances, UTEP Pep Band at Basketball games, Edge of Texas Concert Band and many others. Vincent was a member of the Blue Knights Drum & Bugle Corps in 2010 where he marched on the bass line and was a DCI 1st Place Bass Ensemble World Champion.
Amanda Hunt holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of New Mexico where she studied horn under J.D. Shaw. During her time at UNM, Amanda performed in the top ensembles including the Wind Symphony and Symphony Orchestra. Amanda completed 5 years of drum and bugle corps with the Bluecoats in 2011 as mellophone soloist. Prior to performing with the Bluecoats, Amanda marched with the Troopers and Blue Knights. She served on the instructional staff for the Santa Clara Vanguard.
Originally from Las Vegas, NV, Amanda currently resides in El Paso, TX where she is the assistant band director at Sun Ridge Middle School. She has worked with several programs in the southwest including La Cueva High School, Volcano Vista HS, Montwood HS and currently Pebble Hills HS.
Eric Benton is currently a sophomore at Eastern New Mexico University in Portales, New Mexico where he is pursuing a degree in Music Education and Tuba Performance. Eric is currently a Visual and Music tech at Clovis High School where he is an alumnus, as well as a Visual tech at Portales High School. Eric marched Contra with the Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps in 2016.
Born and raiser in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Phillip has been involved in music and marching since his freshman year of high school. Since then, Phillip has performed with several different music ensembles, including solo performances. He has marched with the UNM Spirit Marching Band in addition to the Seattle Cascades Drum and Bugle Corps. Phillip is currently on the visual staff at Volcano Vista High School where he works with Ziggy Garcia.
Chris is currently the music teacher at Jo Byrns Elementary School in Cedar Hill, Tennessee. He graduated from Austin Peay State University in 2011 with a degree in music education.
Chris marched with the Memphis Sound Drum & Bugle Corps as a trumpet soloist in 2005. He then joined the Phantom Regiment (Rockford, IL) in 2006 and marched through the corps' 2008 World Championship season as a soloist and section leader. From 2012-2016, Chris had the distinct honor of performing as a soloist and lead trumpet player for the 10-time defending DCA Mini Corps Champions, Star United Drum & Bugle Corps (Indianapolis, IN).
Chris maintains an extremely active schedule as an adjudicator, designer, and clinician in the southeastern United States. As a program coordinator and co-drill writer, Chris helps guide the design and instructional process for the WGI Open Class Finalist, Audio Theater and has also worked with the WGI World Class Finalist, Palmetto Percussion. Chris has worked with drum corps such as the Academy, Memphis Sound, Music City, the Colts, and currently serves as the Assistant Visual Caption Supervisor for The Cadets. Chris is thrilled to be joining the design team for Arsenal Drum Corps, as a co-drill writer for the 2018 DCI season.
Chris is an alumni member of the Austin Peay State University chapter of Phi Mu Alpha (Theta Tau ’05). He also holds memberships in the National Association for Music Education, National Education Association, Tennessee Education Association, Middle Tennessee Band and Orchestra Association, Tennessee Music Educators Association, and Tennessee Bandmasters Association.
Andrew graduated from Austin Peay State University in 2008, earning his Bachelors of Science in Music Education Summa Cum Laude. In 2011, he completed his Master's in Instrumental Conducting, with honor, from APSU. He was principal euphonium of the Wind Ensemble, drum major of the Governors Own Marching Band, and president of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia men's music fraternity. He currently holds memberships in the Middle Tennessee Band and Orchestra Association, The National Association for Music Education, National Education Association, Tennessee Music Educators Association, Tennessee Bandmasters Association and International Tuba Euphonium Association.
Since 2011 he has served as director of bands at Sycamore High School in Pleasant View, Tennessee. The band was recognized in 2016 as the Class III Open Southern States Champion at USBands and the recipient of the Cadets Award of Excellence for Outstanding General Effect. In 2014 he was recognized as the State of Tennessee's "Most Distinguished New Educator." As a performer, Andrew played euphonium with Phantom Regiment in 2004 and 2006. He performed with the 10-time DCA Champion Star United based out of Indianapolis, IN from 2011 to 2016. He is the co-founder and Executive Director of Clarksville Youth Performing Arts Association, a non-profit music association that operates Audio Theater, a WGI Percussion Independent Open ensemble. He serves as the ensemble's director and as a designer. He stays active as a designer and clinician for bands and indoor programs throughout Tennessee and Kentucky. As an educator, he has previously taught with Spirit, Music City Legend as Co-Visual Caption Head, Visual Caption Head for Music City Drum Corps in 2014, visual staff for the Colts Drum & Bugle Corps in 2015 and 2016 and just completed the 2017 season with The Cadets. Andrew is thrilled to be joining the design team for Arsenal Drum Corps, as a co-drill writer for the 2018 DCI season.
Best known as arranger and consultant to marching band programs, Spencer-Pierce has served some seventy school districts, having written hundreds of band arrangements for groups of all ability levels and sizes. His writing is informed by thirty years of classroom teaching in instrumental and vocal music in Indiana and California, and his book “Marching Band Arranging” has become a useful reference for new generations of writers. Spencer-Pierce’s output includes work for concert band, instrumental and vocal jazz ensemble, and, most recently, “Soundsport” projects.
He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education from the Indiana University School of Music, and a Master of Arts from Ball State University, where he served as arranger and teaching assistant in the Department of Bands. A Theatre minor at IU, he has directed dozens of plays, musicals, and musical revues in school, civic, and summer stock productions. Since 2005, Spencer-Pierce has served as Director of Vocal Music and Musical Theatre at Salem High School, Salem, Indiana.