Director of Bands, Nicholas Garofalo
Originally from the Metro-Boston area, Nicholas A. Garofalo completed his bachelors of music education at the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga in May of 2006. Mr. Garofalo has arranged, adjudicated and instructed many high school bands in the Tennessee and Georgia region including: East Ridge High School, Notre Dame High School, Red Bank High School, The McCallie School, Warren County High School, Model High School, Northview High School, and Hixson High School.
After graduating from The University of Tennessee, Chattanooga; Nicholas became the Assistant Band Director and Percussion Specialist at Chattahoochee High School and Ocee Elementary School in Alpharetta, Georgia. After numerous budget and financial situations Nicholas recently became the Director of Bands and no longer teaches at Ocee Elementary.
In 2006 Nicholas was the Front Ensemble Director for the Chattanooga Independent Percussion Ensemble based out of Chattanooga, Tennessee placing 4th at Winter Guard International World Championships for there inaugural year. After his work with Chattanooga, he became an instructor for Atlanta Quest Indoor Percussion ensemble from Atlanta, Georgia with yet another World Finalist title in W.G.I. In the summer of 2007 Mr. Garofalo joined the instructional staff of the Alliance Drum and Bugle Corps. During 2008 he assumed the Music Director position for the drum corps leading the ensemble to a Gold Medal in the “A Class Division” at the Drum Corps Associates Championships.
Mr. Garofalo is a currently a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, Georgia Music Educators Association, Winter Guard International, Member at Large for the Southern Association for the Performing Arts and The Music Educators National Convention. Nicholas is a percussion and music ensemble adjudicator through the United States Scholastic Band Association and is also a Vic Firth Educational Team Member
Wind Instructional Staff, Brandon Soloff
Brandon Soloff has been Co-Director of Bands at Taylor Road Middle School in Johns Creek, Georgia since 2017. He co-leads the Taylor Road Symphonic Band, Concert Band, Jazz Ensemble, and Little “Big” Band. Mr. Soloff maintains a busy teaching and performing schedule in his private studio, and serves on staff with the Chattahoochee High School Marching Band. At age ten, Soloff began his study of trumpet and has since studied with Thomas Hooten (Principal Trumpet of the LA Philharmonic), Robert Murray, and the late Lew Soloff.
Mr. Soloff graduated Magna Cum Laude from Columbus State University’s Schwob School of Music in Columbus, GA with a Bachelor of Music Education degree. Mr. Soloff has performed at the College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA) at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Nashville, TN in 2015 with the Schwob Wind Ensemble. In addition to the Schwob Wind Ensemble, he also participated in the Schwob Philharmonic, Schwob Jazz Orchestra, Columbus State University Trumpet Ensemble (National Trumpet Competition Ensemble Semi-Finalists 2014-2016).
Mr. Soloff’s professional affiliations include the National Association for Music Educators, Georgia Music Educators Association, and the International Trumpet Guild. He is a member of the Cobb Wind Symphony.
Soloff resides in Norcross, Georgia with his lovely wife Bethany and cat, Ellie. In his spare time, Mr. Soloff enjoys cheering on his favorite sports teams.
Robert Dickens Jr., Director of Percussion
Robert Dickens Jr. is an educator, arranger, and designer from Dothan, AL. He received his Bachelors in Music Industry from Troy University. During his tenure there, he performed with a myriad of collegiate ensembles as well as the DCI World Class Finalist GLASSMEN Drum & Bugle Corps.
Robert currently resides in Atlanta, GA. In addition to providing percussion education products and services through FXE™, he serves as snare technician for DCI Open Class Finalist Southwind Drum & Bugle Corps. He is a member of the Salyers Percussion Education team and endorses their products exclusively.
Visual Captain, Alayna Tichenor
Alayna Tichenor is a recent graduate of Kennesaw State University with a degree in Communications and Public Relations. She has marched with several ensembles including The Kennesaw State University Marching Owl Band, Spirit of Atlanta Drum and Bugle Corps, and Atlanta Quest Independent Indoor Drumline. Alayna has worked with several metro-Atlanta high schools as a visual coordinator and cymbal tech for both marching band and indoor drumline.
She currently resides in Woodstock, Georgia where she instructs Kickboxing classes when she isn’t working with band programs.
Wind Instructional Staff, Michael Terry
Michael Terry is a freelance musician living in Woodstock, Ga. Having studied at Columbus State University and holding a Bachelor of Music in Music Education degree from Kennesaw State University, Mr. Terry stays active as a teacher, arranger, and drill designer. He has worked with groups in Georgia, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Idaho, Wyoming, California, and China. Also active in drum corps, Mr. Terry marched with The Cadets as a baritone player from 2000-2007 and has been a member of the brass staff for the Troopers (2010-2013), Spirit of Atlanta (2014), The Cadets (2015-2017), and Boston Crusaders (2018-present). Mr. Terry’s professional affiliations include Mu Phi Epsilon, co-ed professional music fraternity (Delta Epsilon chapter), and Phi Mu Alpha, professional music fraternity (Nu Theta chapter).