The Woodwinds, Brass, and Percussion Departments
Our woodwinds, brass, and percussion departments offer lessons to students of all ages and ability on a variety of instruments. Our high caliber, caring faculty is experienced in and able to teach in styles ranging from classical and jazz to pop and rock. The woodwinds department offers lessons on flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, saxophone, and recorder, while the brass department teaches lessons in trumpet, trombone, euphonium, French horn, and tuba. We have a number of percussion instruments available to us and teach both drumset and the full array of orchestral percussion instruments. We foster our students’ musical interests and encourage them to be as well-rounded as they can be. We offer expert guidance and pre-performance coaching for our high school students training for music competitions as well as college auditions.
Dr. Kyle Coughlin, Coordinator of Jazz, Wind, Brass, and Percussion Studies
Read Dr. Coughlin's bio here.
Prefer to jump right in?
Click here to contact Dr. Coughlin
Meet the Winds, Brass, and Percussion Faculty
Brent Madsen, trumpet and jazz improvisation
Versatile trumpeter Brent Madsen is an active jazz, commercial, orchestral, chamber and solo performer as well as an educator. Madsen has performed with groups such as the National Philharmonic Orchestra, the Wolf Trap Opera Company, the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra,
the Brad Linde Ensemble, the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra, and Baltimore-based improvised music collective Out of Your Head. He is also a founding member of NYC-based group Jerseyband. Madsen has played in the backup bands for stars such as Wayne Newton, Johnny Mathis, the Temptations, and the Four Tops. He has also performed in numerous musical productions including Peter Pan, Sunset Boulevard, Show Boat, 42nd Street, A Chorus Line, West Side Story, and Take Joy! at venues such as Wolf Trap, the National Theatre, the Music Center at Strathmore, the Hippodrome Theatre, and the Signature Theatre.
In addition to seven Jerseyband CD releases, Madsen's recording credits include Sting's If On A Winter's Night..., Shakira's She Wolf, Steve Reich's Triple Quartet, Music for a Large Ensemble, Electric Guitar Phase, and Lawrence Moss' New Paths, which features Brent playing alongside Chris Gekker on the trumpet duet entitled "Together".
Madsen holds a BM in jazz performance from the Eastman School of Music and an MM in classical trumpet performance from the University of Maryland. He is currently a DMA candidate at the University of Maryland. In addition to teaching at Howard Community College and The Music Institute at HCC, Madsen is also on faculty at the Peabody Preparatory.
Interested in lessons with Brent? Click here to contact Kyle Coughlin, the Coordinator of Brass Studies.
Elizabeth L.K. Berman, oboe and English horn
Oboist Elizabeth L.K. Berman is no stranger to Howard Community College, where she is currently a faculty member for the Music Department and its noncredit counterpart, The Music Institute. She has been an active chamber and freelance musician since 1998 and has played in a variety of settings, including musicals, recitals, wedding ceremonies, and touring productions.
She received her Bachelor of Music in Oboe Performance from the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University and her Bachelor of Arts in Romance Languages from the Johns Hopkins University Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, both in May 2005. She received her Master of Arts in Arts Administration from Goucher College, writing her major paper on the economic condition and challenges of today’s symphony orchestras. Her oboe teachers have included Jane Marvine, Leslie Starr, and Barbara Girdler. She has coached with many highly-acclaimed musicians including bassoonist Phillip Kolker, chamber musician Clinton Adams, baritone John Shirley-Quirk, and oboists Joseph Turner and Joseph Robinson.
Elizabeth has had the pleasure of touring with the national tours of Annie and Oliver!, musical productions of NETWorks Presentations, LLC, of Columbia, MD and Musical Theatre Associates, of New York, NY, respectively. She learned a great deal about conducting and computer music while on the road as she was the Assistant Conductor on Annie and the NOTION operator for both shows. Following 18 months of touring, she finished the necessary coursework, internship, and completed her major paper for her master’s degree. Her internships, with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra and the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra, enlightened her on both the state of symphony orchestras and symphony orchestra management, with particular attention to marketing, development, and database management.
She is also a staff member at the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company, exploring the realm of her master's field: arts administration.
Interested in lessons with Elizabeth? Click here to contact Kyle Coughlin, the Coordinator of Wind Studies.
Jared Denhard, bag pipes, Celtic harp, euphonium, jazz improvisation, trombone, and ukulele
Celtic harper, storyteller, highland piper and trombonist Jared Denhard is a member of the Celtic rock band O’Malley’s March, the medieval jazz group Keltia, and the early music ensemble Boar’s Head Consort. He is a visiting artist with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s Arts Excel educational outreach program.
A popular performer at Celtic, classical, and jazz events in the Mid-Atlantic region. Jared has performed as soloist on the highland bagpipes with the Delaware Symphony Orchestra, the Baltimore Municipal Band, and the Lexington Brass Quintet.
Jared is also an active composer whose works have been performed and recorded by the United States Air Force Band, The Kinetics Dance Theatre, the London Portable Harp Company, and the Annapolis Brass Quintet.
Jared is a 1989 graduate of the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore, Maryland. He and his wife Heather live in Columbia, Maryland, with their seven children.
Jared's CDs, Cold Nights of Winter, Songs of Innocence, Canterbury Suite, Idylls of the King, Winter Spirit, and Legend of the Selkie are available through his label.
Interested in lessons with Jared? Click here to contact Kyle Coughlin, the Coordinator of Brass Studies.
Larry Williams, French horn
“Fine tone, excellent intonation, superb accuracy, and superior musicianship" - Philip Farkas (former Principal Horn, Chicago Symphony)
Named One of the "50 Leaders of Tomorrow" - Ebony Magazine
"A phenomenally good horn player, with the brilliance for solo work and the ear to blend perfectly with a string quartet that has been playing together for years" - The Maine Sunday Telegram
Hornist Larry Williams has distinguished himself as a multifaceted performing and recording artist and teacher. Williams is currently Solo Horn of American Studio Orchestra, Principal Horn of The Black Pearl Chamber Orchestra and Brass Ensemble, Sphinx Symphony Orchestra, member of The Lyric Brass Quintet, Avatar Brass Quintet, and Ritz Chamber Players. Williams formerly served as Principal Horn of The New World Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Michael Tilson Thomas, and has performed with the Baltimore, Pittsburgh, and San Francisco Symphony Orchestras, among others. His wide range of musical styles include: solo & chamber repertoire, orchestral, jazz, , contemporary, film, and commercial music.
Williams has performed on tours of the US, Russia, China, Japan, and UK, and has toured with Frank Sinatra, and performed with Ray Charles, and Arturo Sandoval.
An active soloist and recitalist, Williams has premiered and recorded several horn concerti including: “Concerto for Horn and Wind Ensemble” by composer Thomas Bough, “The Black Forest Concerto for Horn and Orchestra” by composer James Schroeder and has recorded several solo and chamber music albums.
Marty Nau, saxophone
Marty Nau is a 34 year veteran of the Washington, D.C. jazz and music scene. Originally from Souderton, Pa., Marty entered the Navy Music Program just after graduation from High school in 1977. After boot camp, the Navy music school and a two and a half year tour in
Orlando, Florida he auditioned and won a spot in the Navy’s premier band in Washington, DC. In 1984 Marty won a chair in the Navy’s premier jazz ensemble “The Navy Commodores”. During this time he traveled the country playing performances and clinics.
While in town Marty was very much involved in the music scene outside of the Navy playing in many big bands, small groups and jam sessions. In 1994 he recorded his first CD as a leader. Since then has recorded five cds under his own name and has appeared on many other recordings as a sideman. In 1983 he began studies with jazz legend Phil Woods. Subsequently Marty has studied with clarinet legend Eddie Daniels, soprano saxophonist Dave Liebman, and jazz pianist Hal Galper.
After retirement from the Navy Band in 1997 Marty joined the Capitol Quartet, as saxophone quartet with performers from the DC area. He also taught saxophone jazz improvisation at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) and was a saxophone instructor with the DC Youth Orchestra Program (DCYOP).
Currently Marty’s freelance music activities include playing with the Baltimore Symphony, the Metropolitan Jazz Ensemble, the Bohemian Caverns Jazz Orchestra, the Great American Music Ensemble and his own quartet every Tuesday night at Twins jazz club in Washington, D.C. He also teaches at the Washington Conservatory, the Sheridan School and privately at his home studio.
Melissa Lindon, flute
A Howard County native, Melissa completed her Artist Certificate in Flute Performance at Southern Methodist University, where she studied with Jean Larson and Deborah Baron (piccolo). She began her flute studies with her mother, Marlee Lindon, and studied with Emily Skala before attending Boston University. She received her Bachelor of Music (magna cum laude) and Master of Music degrees in Flute Performance from Boston University as a student of Doriot Anthony Dwyer and Marianne Gedigian. Other influential teachers include Keith Underwood, Martha Aarons, David Shostac, and Linda Toote.
As Adjunct Faculty at Howard Community College and Flute Instructor for The Music Institute at HCC since 2003, Melissa teaches students of all ages and levels. She is co-director of "Flute-a-rama," a weeklong summer flute camp in Takoma Park, Maryland, where she maintains an active private studio. Previous faculty appointments include the Greater Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras Independent Schools Orchestra Program, Winchester (MA) Community Music School, Creative Arts for Kids (Reading, MA), and the acclaimed Duncanville (TX) Independent School District Band Program.
An active orchestral, chamber and solo freelancer in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area, she has performed at venues including The John F. Kennedy Center for the Arts, Strathmore Mansion, Fairfax Old Town Hall, the Hillwood Museum, and Buckingham's Choice. A wind quintet aficionado, she is founder and flutist of the Patagonia Winds, and flutist with the Georgetown Quintet, which was nominated for the Washington Area Music Award as Best Chamber Ensemble of 2009. She is also a performing member of the Friday Morning Music Club and co-principal flute and solo piccolo of its orchestra, Avanti. She performed with Boston area ensembles, including the Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra, Cape Symphony Orchestra, New Bedford Symphony Orchestra, and Atlantic Symphony Orchestra.
She was a featured soloist with the Meadows Wind Ensemble and the Texas Festival Orchestra, and a finalist in the prestigious Pappoutsakis Flute Competition in Boston. She was a 1996 recipient of the P.E.O. Scholar Awards grant. As a member of the Meadows Wind Ensemble, she premiered Stephen Jones' Passages in Manchester, England and is featured on the ensemble's recording of that work on the CD Snow Tracks on the Gasparo label.
Also a certified yoga teacher (RYT500), Melissa brings particular attention to breathing, posture and body awareness to her flute teaching. She has been featured as a clinician leading "Yoga for Musicians" workshops at the Trevor Wye Masterclass at Boston University, the Flute Society of Washington's Mid-Atlantic Flute Fair, and Howard Community College, and works individually with professional and student musicians to apply yoga practices to achieve freedom and ease in their music-making.
Interested in lessons with Melissa? Click here to contact Kyle Coughlin, the Coordinator of Wind Studies.
Melissa Wertheimer, flute and piccolo
Melissa Wertheimer leads a life immersed in the arts as a performer, researcher, and teacher. She is a diverse performer of solo, chamber, and orchestral music; a piccolo specialist; a new music enthusiast; and a dedicated scholar of music history and women composers. Melissa loves to contribute to the artistic life of the Baltimore-DC area. She has performed with the Maryland Choral Society Orchestra, Occasional Symphony, Concert Artists of Baltimore, the Howard Community College Faculty Concert Series, SONAR New Music Ensemble, Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, and at the Artscape and SoWeBo Music and Arts festivals. Since 2011 Melissa has been adjunct flute faculty at Howard Community College and an instructor for The Music Institute. She also taught undergraduate music history and appreciation at the Johns Hopkins University from 2011-2015. Melissa has enjoyed adjudicating auditions for Maryland honors bands and coaching sectionals for Howard County Gifted and Talented ensembles. She has received grants for lectures and recitals from Yamaha, the College Music Society, the Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts, and the Peabody Institute.
Melissa melds her many musical passions into a career as an archivist-librarian who works with historic, musical documents and shares their value with all lovers of music. Melissa is Archivist of the Music Library Association and has worked for the archives of the Peabody Institute, Walters Art Museum, and Baltimore Museum of Art. Melissa holds a Master of Library and Information Science degree from the University of Maryland, a Master of Music degree in Piccolo from the Peabody Institute, and a Bachelor of Music degree in Flute from Ithaca College.
Interested in lessons with Melissa? Click here to contact Kyle Coughlin, the Coordinator of Wind Studies.
Michael Kuhl, drumset
Mike Kuhl studied at Towson University and has over fifteen years of experience as a performing drummer, percussionist, recording artist, composer and music instructor. As well as having over forty students in his own teaching studio, Mike is also a member of the Howard
Community College faculty. He wrote the Drum Set curriculum used by HCC.
As a band member of the internationally acclaimed singer/songwriter Jenny Boyle and many other professional acts, Mike has toured extensively throughout the United States, Europe, Africa and the Mediterranean. He also tours in the Middle East as part of the USO in support of the troops stationed there.
Known for his vast knowledge of a wide range of music genres, from Jazz to Rock to World Music, Mike is a first call studio musician in the Mid-Atlantic area with his name credited on over thirty recordings. He is also the first call for numerous commercial jingles for the Discovery Channel and National Geographic at Clean Cuts studio.
Mike can be seen and heard performing every Tuesday night with Jazz guitar great Paul Wingo at Bertha's in Fells Point.
Interested in lessons with Mike? Click here to contact Kyle Coughlin, the Coordinator of Percussion Studies.
Timothy McKay, percussion
Tim McKay (BM Oberlin Conservatory; MM University of Maryland) currently serves on the music faculty at Howard Community College where he teaches applied percussion lessons and the percussion ensemble. He maintains a strong private teaching studio of students from
Howard County and beyond, many of whom have participated and excelled in county and state level competitions and ensembles. He is also the percussion coordinator of the Howard County High School GT Orchestra.
Professionally, he has performed with the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra, and the Annapolis, Roanoke, West Virginia and Syracuse Symphonies. He has performed at numerous concert venues across the country including the Kennedy Center, Strathmore Music Center, Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, the National Cathedral, the Getty Center, Merkin Hall, and the Cleveland Museum of Art, and has worked with world renowned conductors including Leonard Slatkin, Robert Spano, David Robertson, Jo-Ann Falletta, and Gerard Schwarz. In 2009 he performed the first movement of Christopher Rouse's percussion concerto "Der gerettete Alberich" as an alumni soloist with the University of Maryland Symphony Orchestra. He was chosen as a finalist in the Howard County "Rising Star" competition and performed at the Celebration of the Arts Gala in March 2012.
Along with music, Tim is an avid sports enthusiast. He enjoys all sports, but his true love is baseball. You will find Mr. McKay and his two girls at Nationals Park enjoying games throughout the season. When baseball season subsides he shifts his attention to Capitals hockey, Maryland basketball, and Michigan football. Aside from sports he enjoys going to the gym, baking bread, and being a stay-at-home dad! Tim resides in Columbia with his beautiful family - his wife Amanda and their daughter, Isabelle, and son, Zachary.
Interested in lessons with Tim? Click here to contact Kyle Coughlin, the Coordinator of Percussion Studies.