About the Musicians'
Galen McKinney    David Elkin    Jim Stillwagon


Galen McKinney

Galen began his studies with Robert Dolwick, principal trumpet of the Erie Philharmonic, and studied with him for nearly 10 years. During this time Galen was a member of the Erie Junior Philharmonic and brass ensemble and also served as principal trumpet for both groups throughout high school. In 1997 he also won the Eiji Oue Concerto Competition.

He received the Hall of Flame award for the arts in music and the DíAngelo Music Scholarship. Upon graduating from McDowell, Galen attended Penn State University as a music performance major, where he studied with John Daniel, Dan Yoder, Mark Lusk, and Dr.Langston Fitzgerald. During this time he was a member of the Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble, Jazz I and II, Symphony Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra, and PSU Brass Quintet. Galen graduated in 2003 with a Bachelor of Music in Performance degree.

After his bachelorís degree, Galen then attended Mercyhurst College in Erie Pennsylvania for a Music Education Certificate. Galen served as the lead trumpet for the Mercyhurst jazz ensemble for three years. His major teacher during this time was Dr.Mathew Inkster. While at Mercyhurst, Galen founded the Crossroads Jazz Orchestra with his brother Aaron McKinney. This group has performed at the Erie Arts Festival, The Erie Blues and Jazz Festival, Celebrate Erie, and the Grape Festival in North East Pa.

In his last year at Mercyhurst, Galen began studies with Dr.Stephen Hawk at Slippery Rock University. This is where Galen and Dave Auman met to form Bridge City Brass. Galen performed as lead trumpet with Slippery Rock Jazz and traveled to the Montreux and North Sea jazz festivals in Europe during the summer of 2006.

Galen is currently living in Pittsburgh with his wife Elizabeth, where they attend Duquesne University as Graduate Students. Galen is the Graduate Assistant in Jazz Studies where he studies with Mike Tomaro and Sean Jones. Galen performs as lead trumpet with the Duquesne Jazz Ensemble and has performed with many of the groups around Pittsburgh, including Azucar, Lets be Frank, & The Three Rivers Jazz Orchestra. He currently serves as a staff instructor for the Duquesne Summer Jazz Camp. Galen has also been on a recent recording with the Three Rivers Jazz Orchestra for Mike Tomaroís arranging book that will be released by Hal Leonard.

David Elkin

Elkin, B.M. Temple University, is studying with Bill Caballero of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, and has studied with Dan Williams of the Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra. Currently Elkin is a M.M. student and graduate assistant at Duquesne University where he teaches horn lessons and leads the horn ensemble.

Elkin has worked for the Haddonfield, McKeesport, Williamsport, Curtis, Duquesne University, and Temple University Orchestras. He has also worked as an assistant and player with the Settlement School of Music and New School of Music of Philadelphia in chamber music settings.

Beyond writing his graduate thesis, Elkin is taking orchestral auditions at the national level, working with the newly formed Bridge City Brass, developing and marketing horn-related gadgets, and will be playing the premier of "O Glorious Ones" a musical by Stephen Flaherty this Spring 2007.

Jim Stillwagon

Jim Stillwagon is the newest member of Bridge City Brass. He began studying tuba at a very young age under the tutelage of his father Jim Stillwagon Sr. Jim comes from a very musical family where his parents both served as music teachers in the Pittsburgh Public Schools and his father Jim Sr. is a founding and current member of Pittsburghís own River City Brass Band. Jimís private teachers include Jim Stillwagon Sr., David McCollum, and Matthew Shiner.

Jim is a 1994 graduate of West Mifflin High school where he participated as Principal Tuba at many PMEA festivals at the District, Region, and State levels in both the Band and Orchestra. He also was chosen as the principal tuba player to perform in the 1994 All Eastern Orchestra which encompassed 13 states. Jim served as the Principal Tuba with the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony for 6 years, Three Rivers Young Persons Orchestra for 4 years, and River City Youth Brass Band for 6 years. In 1994 Jim won the TRYPO concerto competition and performed the Vaughn Williams Tuba Concerto with the orchestra. He also won the Mt. Lebanon Keynotes Scholarship Competition against college students from Eastman and Julliard.

Jim received a full music scholarship to West Virginia University in 1994. He graduated in 1998 with a B.S. in Music Education where he studied privately with David McCollum. During his tenure at WVU Jim sat as Principal Tuba with the WVU Wind Symphony and Symphony Orchestra. He was also the tuba section leader in the WVU Marching Band and Pep Band. While at West Virginia, Jim won the Young artist competition in consecutive years. As a result, he performed the Vaughn Williams Tuba Concerto in 1997 and The Edward Gregson Tuba Concerto in 1998 both with the West Virginia University Symphony Orchestra.

As a professional Jim has performed with the Johnstown Symphony, Western Maryland Symphony, Wheeling Symphony, Byham Opera Orchestra, Pittsburgh Pirate Bucco Band, Entertainers, Carnegie Brass, Bridge City Brass and River City Brass Band. Jim played with the River City Brass Band for 3 years and was asked to perform the Canadian Brass version of Tuba Tiger Rag as a soloist. Jim continues to work as a freelance musician in the tri-state area as well as teach private lessons. Jim has been a teacher in the Pine Richland School District for 8 years where he teaches band to students at levels 4-12. Jim also served as the orchestra director for Pine Richlandís High School Musical for 5 years. His student orchestra has been nominated several times and won the Gene Kelly Award for best all-student orchestra.


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