Horn Area

Graduate's Accolades & Biographies

Congratulations to all the students listed below! The following is a brief list of what each graduate is doing now

Undergraduate Degrees          (Click here for the Graduates list) 

Graduate Degrees
DM = Doctor of Music, MM = Masters of Music, PD = Performers Diploma

Undergraduate Biographies                   

Click for Graduate Biographies

BurnsEverett Burns, a horn student of Professor Jeff Nelsen, completed his Bachelor's Degree in Music Performance at Indiana University in December of this year.  While at IU, he has held many different positions in the orchestra program, including two semesters as principal of the Philharmonic Orchestra.  He has also served as the second horn of the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic since 2008.  In 2008 he was selected as a winner in the Dorothy Frizelle Orchestral Audition Contest, and in 2009 he won first prize in the International Horn Society Solo Competition.  He has also spent a year studying natural horn with Professor Richard Seraphinoff.  Everett has participated in a wide variety of chamber music ensembles while at IU, including horn quartets, brass quintets, and woodwind quintets.  He is from Richardson, Texas. Please visit his website at

  • Columbus Indiana Philharmonic, Second Horn (2008-present)
  • International Horn Society Solo Competition, First Place (2009)
  • International Horn Society Audition Competition, Winner (2008)


Zach Glavan has completed his final semester in the Jacobs School of Music with a BM in Horn Performance. Zach was born in Grapevine, Texas where he first began his musical studies in 2000. Karen and Dennis Houghton were most instrumental (pun intended) in his horn studies, and Zach performed as principal horn with the Fort Worth Youth Orchestra and then later the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra.  Zach also had the honor of touring throughout Austria, the Czech Republic, and several cities in China with these renowned ensembles.

Since joining Studio Nelsen in 2007, Zach has been an extremely active orchestral and chamber music performer. He has also enjoyed Natural Horn studieswith Professor Seraphinoff.  One performance highlight for Zach was performing the principal horn obligato solo in Mahler's 5th Symphony with maestro David Effron. Zach has also had the honor of performing with esteemed conductors Leonard Slatkin, Giancarlo Guerrero, Mario Venzago, and Arthur Fagen, as well asviolinist Joshua Bell. In 2009, his woodwind quintet was a finalist in the Latin American Music Competition. As a result, the “Glavan Quintet”'s recording of “Cinco Danzas Breves” was featured on the competition’s annual album.  His quintet then toured to Medellín, Colombia to perform at the VII International ColombianChamber Music Festival.  A strong advocate of new music, Zach has performed world premiers for several composers and has recently commissioned two new works for horn. His most recent commission, a work by Australian composer Mark Oliveiro, is titled “Thunor’s Gate” and is for Horn and Live Electronics.  It was premiered by Jeff Nelsen at the 2010 International Horn Society Symposium in Brisbane, Australia. Zach will be performing the U.S. premiere of Oliveiro’s work along with a new work by Bin Li in the fall. Zach has performed with the Camerata Orchestra and is an I.H.S Audition Contest Winner. After graduation, Zach plans on going to Spain to study horn, back pack, and make his hopes of finally becoming fluent in Spanish come true!

  • Glavan Woodwind Quintet, Tour to Columbia (2009)

  • International Horn Society Audition Competition, Winner (2008)

Aaron KibblerAaron Kibbler is a member of the Jacobs School of Music class of 2011, studying horn performance with Jeff Nelsen and trying to make a joyful noise unto the Lord. He started his horn playing in 3rd grade at Huckleberry Hill Elementary School in Brookfield Connecticut on a single F horn purchased by his Mom at a flea market for $12.50, though he has long since moved on to a much more reliable instrument. Aaron went to high school at Vernon Hills High School in Vernon Hills Illinois and played in the Wind Ensemble and Symphony Orchestra. While in high school, Aaron was a member of the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra from 2005-2007. His most memorable experiences with the CYSO were touring Poland, Germany, and the Czech Republic. While at IU, Aaron has performed with the Philharmonic orchestra, the Symphony orchestra, and the Wind Ensemble.

lombardiMichael Lombardi, a native of Long Island, NY, began playing horn at the age of 9. Michael’s pursuit of a professional music career began in 2005 when he was named a member of the New York All-State ensembles, an honor he received again in 2006. In 2007, Michael was named to the MENC All-Eastern Honors Orchestra, playing second horn. During his high school years, he led a very busy performing schedule, playing with the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra of New York, Long Island Youth Orchestra, and Nassau Suffolk Performing Arts Wind Symphony as principal horn. He has currently finished pursuing a Bachelor of Music Degree in Performance at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, which he completed in the Spring of 2011.

mclaughlinRebecca McLaughlin, upon graduating from Indiana University, has been performing with the United States Army Bands.  She recently passed Basic Combat Training as first in her company of 203 soldiers as their Soldier Leader of the Cycle, and graduated from the Advanced Individual Training (AIT) Course at the Army School of Music in June.  During AIT, Rebecca received one of the six Certificates of Achievement at her Field Training Exercise out of 400 soldiers, made the Commandant's List, auditioned and received the "C1" certification on horn, and earned the Adjutant General's Corps Regimental Association's Medal of Excellence for leadership, physical fitness, and academics. She is currently stationed with the 8th Army Band in Korea, and enjoys performing with their brass quintets, ceremonial bands, concert band, and various other small ensembles. 

oconnellRyan O'Connell is an active performing musician, arranger, and composer, best known for his top-selling choral piece titled "Variations on ‘Deck the Hall.'"

Currently, Ryan is in demand as a performer on the Horn, piano, voice, and also as a music director and conductor. He has held top positions in the music ensembles at Indiana University, where he completed a Bachelor of Music degree in Horn Performance. Other notable appearances include playing principle horn for the Honor Band of America, and a leading role on stage in the Broadway national tour of the musical, "Ragtime."

Ryan's arranging and orchestrating skills have been used by the State Theatre in Easton, PA for their television awards program called "The Freddy Awards" for the past three years. He has also done arrangements for Jeff Nelsen and the Canadian Brass.

Ryan has also experienced success as a published composer. His first published piece, "Variations on ‘Deck the Hall,'" was selected as an Editor's Choice by J. W. Pepper and remained a top seller for the entire season. He has also composed other significant works, including pieces for film & television, plus concert works for orchestra, choir, horn, chamber ensembles, and solo piano. For more information about Ryan's compositions, please visit his website at

Ryan finished a mid-west tour with the rock band, "Stop on Green" as lead pianist, vocalist, and assistant musical director. In addition, he continues to work in musical theater, as a musical director, vocal coach, and accompanist. 

Recently, Ryan has been a Music Director at the Bloomington Youth Theatre (Summer '11), written choral publications for Shawnee Press/Hal Leonard, and is in Los Angeles, studying film scoring at University of Southern California (

  • Best selling arrangement of choral piece, "Variations on 'Deck the Hall'" (2009)

  • Multiple choral publications (2009-present)

  • Film score (writing/conducting/playing) (2010)

  • Television score (writing/playing) (2009)

  • Touring with rock band, "Stop on Green" (2009)

  • Casting finalist with Cirque du Soleil (2010)

smoakJenny Smoak is a first-year Performer Diploma student studying modern horn with Jeff Nelsen and natural horn with Richard Seraphinoff. Having just completed her Bachelor's Degree in May 2011 with Jeff, she is returning (and excited) for another year here at IU!  While at IU, Jenny has participated in a number of ensembles including Indiana University’s Philharmonic, Chamber, Festival, Concert, Symphony, and Baroque Orchestras, Symphonic Band, Horn Choir, Brass Choir, and other various chamber ensembles. A native of Raleigh, NC, Jenny performed for 4 years with the nationally award-winning British style Triangle Youth Brass Band, playing the Eb Tenor Horn. Recently, Jenny has attended Jeff Nelsen’s Fearless Performance for Musicians Seminar, Chautauqua Summer Music Festival, Eastern Music Festival, the Raphael Mendez Brass Institute, and the International Horn Society Symposium over the summers. Having studied abroad in Vienna, Austria in the Fall of 2009, Jenny studied horn with Wolfgang Vladar (Vienna Philharmonic) and traveled around Europe meeting and hearing glorious musicians from all over the world! Outside of playing the horn, Jenny has been named a “Founders Scholar” by Indiana University (2009) and is also an avid participant and leader in Cancer Awareness community events throughout Bloomington. She loves photography, dogs, baking cakes, reading, drinking hot chocolate, and learning something new everyday!

Graduate Biographies

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adams-selenaSelena Adams: Staff Sergeant Selena Adams hails from Nicholson, Georgia. Prior to joining The U.S. Army Field Band, she was a band director at Loveland High School in Loveland, CO and Spartanburg High School in Spartanburg, SC. SSG Adams was a member of the 2008 Japan Touring Cast of Music Motion Theater’s Odyssey, the Terre Haute Symphony Orchestra, the Southern Indiana Wind Ensemble, and the Cadets Drum and Bugle Corps. She has participated in the National Repertory Orchestra, Orford Summer Music Academy, and Hot Springs Summer Music Festivals and has performed with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, ProMusica Colorado Chamber Orchestra, Spartanburg Symphony Orchestra, and numerous regional ensembles. SSG Adams earned her Bachelor of Music Education degree at Furman University, her Master of Music Performance degree at Indiana University, and is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University of Colorado. Her teachers include Michael Thornton, Richard Seraphinoff, and Gayle Chesebro. As a member of the Army Field Band, SSG Adams presents recitals, master classes, and clinics with the Pentagon Winds woodwind quintet.

carpenterDeanna Carpenter is a candidate for the DM-Brass Pedagogy degree.  After completing the MM degree at IU in 2005 studying with Michael Hatfield, she stayed at IU to become a candidate for the DM degree in 2009 studying with Jeff Nelsen.  She spent her Undergraduate years at the University of Minnesota- Twin Cities studying with Charles Kavalovski and Herb Winslow.  While there she played in the first side by side concert with the Minnesota Orchestra, was a teacher to many young horn and violin students.  She was a finalist in the 2002 Midwest Horn workshop solo competition in Oshkosh WI, and participated in workshops such as the Midwest Horn workshop in St. Louis, Western Illinois Horn Festival, the Kendall Betts Horn Camp, The International Horn Symposium in Denver, Fearless Audition Training for Hornists with Jeff Nelsen, and Baroque Trumpet making workshop with Robert Barclay and Richard Seraphinoff.  Deanna is currently back home in North Dakota working on completing her final document while helping with the family business and taking auditions.  Away from the Horn, she enjoys running and playing with her little dog.


Julie Gerhardt primarily performs in and around the Atlanta area with recent horn-playing forays as far north as Iowa and as far south as Key West. Her motto, "Have horn, will travel," also takes her into as many as nine schools per week to teach horn sectionals and private lessons. Additionally, Julie is the instructor of horn at the University of West Georgia.

hendersonKurtis Henderson having earned his bachelors degree in horn performance, has studied with Jeff Nelsen and completed a performers diploma in 2007. Kurtis is currently a Horn Section Leader in the US Navy, Navy Band Southwest (San Diego, CA), and was a Naval Recruit Training Command Honor Graduate.

Lauren Hughes is  finishing a Doctorate of Music in Brass Pedagogy. Lauren currently holds the position sof Assistant to the Chair of the Department of Music and Arts Technology at IUPUI as well as Adjunct Professor of Horn.  She has performed with the Marion Symphony, the Orkestra Projekt of Indianapolis, Columbus Indiana Philharmonic, the Bloomington Pops Orchestra, Pensacola Symphony, Mobile Symphony, and the Athens Symphony. Lauren can be reached at


Timothy Huizenga is a member of “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band.  As such, Tim regularly performs with the Marine Band and Marine Chamber Orchestra at the White House, in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, and across the country during the band's annual concert tour.  Prior to joining The Marine Band, Tim was a member of The United States Army Field Band in Ft. Meade, Md, and was principal horn of the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic.  Tim earned a BSOF degree in 2007 in the studio of Myron Bloom, and a PD in 2008 in the studio of Jeff Nelsen. 

MoranPeggy Moran, DM '13, Performer Diploma '02, MM '01, is the Assistant Professor of Horn and Theory at the University of Central Oklahoma. She teaches horn, horn choir, chamber music and aural skills. Dr. Moran performs extensively; she has performed solo and chamber recitals at the International Horn Society and International Womens' Brass Conferences. She has also performed with the Indianapolis Symphony, the Louisville Orchestra, the Dayton Philharmonic, and the Oklahoma City Philharmonic.


Originally from Macomb, Illinois, John Reem earned his Bachelor of Music degrees in Horn Performance and Music Composition at Western Illinois University. His primary horn teacher has been Dr. Randall Faust. While at WIU, he participated in Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Concert Band and Marching Band. John has also performed as Assistant Principal Horn of the Knox-Galesburg Symphony Orchestra, Principal Horn of the Lausitzer Opernsommer (Germany) and Section Horn of the American Wind Symphony Orchestra. He has also appeared twice as a soloist with the WIU Symphony Orchestra, performing Lars-Erik Larsson’s Concertino for Horn and Strings and Robert Schumann’s Konzertstück für vier Hörner.

John is a member of the International Horn Society and has attended the symposia in Cape Town (2006) and Macomb (2009). He also is a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia. In his spare time, John enjoys watching movies, in addition to following college and professional sports. He is an avid fan of the Indianapolis Colts and San Francisco 49ers, in addition to the Chicago Cubs and Minnesota Twins.  He also enjoys University of Michigan sports, and is learning to love Indiana University sports as well.

On a personal note, John is extremely proud and excited having finished his Master of Music degree as a member of the IU Horn Studio, and is equally excited and blessed to have studied with Richard Seraphinoff.

reuterJessica Reuter earned her Masters Degree in Horn performance with an emphasis on the Natural Horn in 2009 in the studio of Richard Seraphinoff. Having served as the principal horn for the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic from 2008 - 2009, Jessica is currently the Adjunct Professor of Horn at the Southeast Missouri State University. She can be contacted at 


Dr. Jessie Thoman (DM 2006, PD 2010) is currently the Assistant Professor of Horn at the University of Tennessee at Martin where she teaches all things horn and music history.  Along with working at the university, Jessie is also the hornist in the acclaimed Mirari Brass Quintet which has been signed by Ariel Artists and will be recording their 2nd album in May (debut album, Spires, 2012).  The group also commissions new works for the brass quintet genre from composers like Eric Nathan, Austin Jaquith, and Clint Needham, amongst others.  Jessie is also third horn in the Paducah Symphony (Paducah, KY).  A student of Jeff Nelsen, she continues her Fearless quest in teaching, performing, and in life:)


Ericka Tyner Grodrian is Assistant Professor of Music at Valparaiso University, where she teaches studio horn, chamber music, musicianship, and fearless performance courses. She is also the creator and editor of Beyond the Short Call, a website resource of horn opera excerpts and recordings designed to help students and professionals prepare for opera orchestra auditions.


Erin Yoder is a native of Goshen, Indiana, where she attended Goshen College and earned degrees in both music performance and biology.  In addition, she graduated from Northwestern University with a master of music performance in horn.  Erin has studied with David Mosley, Bruce Heim, Barry Benjamin, and Arnold Jacobs.  She taught applied horn lessons at both Bethel College and Goshen College, and played principal horn in the Maple City Chamber Orchestra.  Erin is currently studying at Indiana University with Myron Bloom (modern horn), Richard Seraphinoff (natural horn), and working toward a doctorate in brass pedagogy.

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