Day of Percussion Biographies
A native of Puerto Rico, Luis Benetti has performed and conducted workshops since 1987. Although he is a Latin percussionist, he has played different styles of music such as Brazilian, hip hop, reggae, contemporary jazz, salsa and Latin jazz. Furthermore, he has played with various Afro Caribbean and West African drumming troupes.
As a member of Up From the Roots, an Afro Caribbean drumming group, he performed and conducted workshops in public schools in Northern California. He designed workshops for elementary school students in areas such as drumming, dance and instrument construction. In 1990 he was given a grant from the California Arts Council to build the religious yoruban drums known as bata. Three years ago he designed a Latin jazz project, which he conducted at the Visual and Performing Arts Center in Sacramento.
His musical performances include appearances at the National Black Arts Festival in Atlanta, the Monterey Jazz Festival and the Reno Jazz Festival. His seminars include Latin American Percussion Clinic, The Latin Jazz Project, Making and Playing the Shekere and the History of Development of Afro Cuban Folklore.
Huei-Yuan Pan is currently on music faculty at Lyons Township High School in La Grange, IL, where he instructs courses in Concert Band, Jazz Band, Marching Band, Guitar and AP Music Theory. He holds a Masters Degree in Music Performance from Northwestern University, where he directed the marching percussion program, assisted in the direction of the percussion ensemble, and studied with Michael Burritt, James Ross, and Paul Wertico. Additionally, he serves as Director of the Green Thunder Indoor Percussion Program, a training organization for the Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps.
A native of Houston, TX, Huei was a marching member of the Phantom Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps in 2001, and marched in the snare line and front ensemble of the six-time world champion Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps from 2002 thru 2004. A marching snare drum and marimba specialist, Huei has worked as both a private instructor and consultant for several of the most successful band programs in the state of Texas, most recently Cedar Park High School.
In May of 2005, Huei earned the Bachelor of Arts in Music Education from the University of Texas at Austin. There he studied with Dr. Thomas Burritt, Dr. Robert Duke, Tony Edwards, and Brannen Temple, and served on the percussion staff of the Longhorn Band.
Dr. Justin R. Stolarik (b.1980, Southampton NY) is currently the Assistant Director of Bands at Henderson State University in Arkadelphia AR, where he assists with all aspects of the university band program. He assists with the marching band, is the conductor of the Symphony Band and Reddie Basketball Band, teaches courses in Marching Band Techniques and Wind Conducting, and is a frequent guest conductor in the Department of Music.
As a former graduate teaching assistant at The University of Texas at Austin, Dr. Stolarik worked extensively with the Longhorn Band, Basketball/Volleyball Band, undergraduate conducting classes, the Longhorn Concert Band, and was on faculty for the Longhorn Summer Music Camps. His wind arrangements were frequently performed by the athletic bands at football and basketball games before audiences of 85,000. In addition to athletic bands, he has arranged for The Dallas Wind Symphony and The University of Texas Wind Ensemble (with premieres across Europe in 2008), as well as instrumental back-ups for Carolyn Wonderland, Roky Erickson, Ray Benson, Jerry Jeff Walker, and Ghostland Observatory.
Dr. Stolarik is also active in the public schools as a clinician and adjudicator. He has taught and arranged for marching bands throughout Florida and Texas, as well as for the Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps. Dr. Stolarik holds a bachelor's degree with highest honors in Music Education from The University of Florida and a master's degree in Performance from The University of Texas at Austin. His doctorate is in Performance with emphasis in Conducting. Dr. Stolarik's past performances have been featured in issues of Modern Drummer and Percussion News.