Brian Croach, Soprano Cornet
Brian Croach has been a cornet player with the Allegheny Brass Band since 2014. More recently, Brian has enjoyed playing the E-flat soprano cornet part for the Brass Band.
Brian received his B.S. in Music Education from Slippery Rock University in 2014. He is now the instrumental and general music teacher at Laurel Middle High School where he teaches students in grades seven through twelve. He will be entering his 6th year at Laurel at the start of the 2019-2020 school year where his regular schedule consists of seventh and eighth grade instrumental lessons, seventh and eighth grade concert band, seventh grade general music, ninth through twelfth grade chamber ensemble, ninth through twelfth grade beginning theory class, and ninth through twelfth grade concert band. The Senior High Concert Band showcased their talents this past year when they premiered a new work of music on a concert with the River City Brass Band. Brian is also the director of the marching band as well as the jazz ensemble. Both groups perform regularly and the jazz ensemble even opened up for the Balcony Big Band this past spring.
Joel Greenberger, Principal Solo Cornet
Joel S. Greenberger has played the trumpet for 40-plus years and joined the Allegheny Brass Band in 1998. He studied with Anthony L. Pasquarelli at Carnegie Mellon University and during his high school years in Pittsburgh, he participated in the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony, Pittsburgh All-City Orchestras, Carnegie Tech Honors Band, Mid-East Regional Orchestra, and various other ensemble and chamber groups. Joel has earned a CMU Award and the Fenwal Brass Award.He attended Columbia University for pre-medical education and was a music major, then participating in the Columbia University Concert Band, Columbia University Orchestra, and other chamber orchestras. Joel attended Harvard Medical School and participated in the Harvard-Radcliffe Orchestra and Harvard University Summer Orchestras. While on the faculty at Harvard University Medical School, University of Massachusetts, and during his 29 years outside of Pittsburgh, he participated in various brass quintets and civic orchestras, such as the Lincoln-Sudbury (MA) Civic Orchestra.After returning to Pittsburgh in 1993, resumed his lessons with Anthony Pasquarelli at Carnegie Mellon. Joel Greenberger has soloed with the River City Brass Band (where he serves as a regular substitute cornet player), and the CMU Youth Brass Band. He is the 2003 winner of the Pro Am division of the ITG National Trumpet Competition. Since 2000 he has studied Baroque Trumpet with John Thiessen, privately and at the International Baroque Institute of the Longy School of Music and the Baroque Performance Institute at Oberlin College. He specializes in (and is on-call for performance of) the 2nd Brandenburg Concerto, on modern piccolo or baroque F trumpet.Joel is actively involved with music with his wife Cathy, who plays piano and violin, and their four children: Rachel (flute and a cappella singing), Emily (clarinet), Joshua (violin) and Benjamin (trumpet), as well as in musical organizations around Pittsburgh.
Timothy Yee, Solo Cornet
Timothy Yee joined the ABB in 1987. In the last 50 or so years since he first started studying the trumpet, Tim has been awarded the Salvation Army Erik Leidzen Memorial Scholarship and studied trumpet with Anthony L. Pasquarelli at Carnegie Mellon University for many years. He has performed with the Pittsburgh Civic Orchestra, the Edgewood Symphony, the North Pittsburgh Philharmonic Orchestra, the Pittsburgh Savoyards, East Winds Symphonic Band and in the pit orchestra for high school musicals. Tim is a former Bandmaster of The Salvation Army and volunteers as a summer camp music instructor. He is employed at PNC as an Information Technology Risk Compliance Officer and lives in Ross Township with his wife, Joy. Tim and Joy have two adult children (David and Sharon) as well as two grandchildren.
Rita Ferrere, Solo Cornet
Rita joined the band in the fall of 2015 and has been playing the trumpet since the 5 th grade. She has a bachelor’s degree in music education from Clarion University and a master’s degree in music from Youngstown State University. She previously taught instrumental music, grades 4-12, and was a band director for 20 years. In addition to the ABB, Rita also performs with the Mercer Community Band, the Venango Chamber Orchestra, the Franklin Silver Cornet Band, the Concert Band of Northwest Pennsylvania, and the Bayfront Brass Quintet. Rita lives in Forestville (in northern Butler County) and works as a medical records technician for UPMC Tri-Rivers in Slippery Rock.
Louise Marino, Solo Cornet
Louise joined the Allegheny Brass Band in the Fall of 2019. She has been playing the trumpet and cornet for 44 years. Originally from Turtle Creek, she began playing trumpet in 4th grade and had the privilege of private instruction with Cookie Viggiano and later studied with Patsy Oliver. Louise holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, studying trumpet with both Dr. Calvin Weber and Dr. William Becker. She holds a Master’s Equivalency from both Duquesne University and California University of Pennsylvania. Louise began her teaching career in the Washington DC Area where she taught for 3 years in the Archdiocesan Music Program. Currently, she is teaching Instrumental music in the Mt. Lebanon School District where she has taught for the past 30 years on all levels of instruction, elementary, middle school and high school. Louise directed the Mt. Lebanon High School marching band for 14 years, garnering many awards and superior ratings in competition during her tenure. She is excited to reinvigorate her playing career again with the band to compliment the church and wedding functions that have kept her busy. Louise is an active member of PMEA and PSEA and is a strong advocate for music education in the public schools.
Tracey Allison, 2nd and
From New Cumberland, WV
Tracey is currently an administrative assistant at Volkwein’s Music (Pittsburgh, PA) and Riverside Presbyterian Church (Wellsville, OH). She began studying trumpet in 4th grade.
She is a graduate of Beaver Local High School, Lisbon, Ohio, and has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration/Marketing from the University of Akron, Akron, Ohio, where she played with the University Wind Ensemble.
Tracey has been a member of numerous community bands, brass ensembles and other performance opportunities in the tri-state area for over 15 years after a 20 year hiatus from playing and performing.
She has been a member of The Allegheny Brass Band since 2015.
Ray Heller, 2nd Cornet
Ray, a retired Electrical Engineer from Allison Park, PA was a founding member of the band and held the flugelhorn chair. He relinquished his chair in the early 90’s due to international engineering work and birth of three great but not musically inclined children. Ray returned to the band in 2017 in the cornet section and as back-up flugelhorn. Originally from Nazareth, PA, Ray picked up the trumpet from his father who had been principal trumpet for the Air Force Bands at Mitchell Field on Long Island.His first performance was in a talent show in second grade playing a few tunes with piano accompaniment. At Nazareth High School he was principal trumpet and student conductor for 2 years. College years were at Lehigh University for a BS in Electrical Engineering while again being principal trumpet and student conductor for 2 years. Also, during college years, Ray played lead trumpet in a Jazz Band backed by Martin Guitar of Nazareth. The band opened concerts for Count Basie, Woody Herman, Maynard Ferguson, Stan Kenton, Buddy Rich and co-hosted jazz clinics with the Air Force Airmen of Note out of Washington DC. Just looking to have fun when not travelling with his job, Ray has bounced around with several of the North Hills local community bands. A minor non-musical claim to fame is that as head coach of the Hampton High School In-Line Hockey JV team, the team won the PIRHL (local high school league), PA State and AAU National Championships all in the same season. A minor musical claim to fame is ownership of a Bach Stradivarius trumpet made in 1929 with the serial number of 9.
Michael Buckstein, Repiano Cornet
Michael Buckstein is an educator and performer based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, at which he earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Music and a Bachelors of Science Degree in Psychology. Michael is also a graduate of the Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP), at which he earned a Bachelors of Science in Education Degree in Music Education. His primary teachers include Karl Priore (Pitt) and Dr. Kevin Eisensmith (IUP). He has been a member of the Allegheny Brass Band since January 2020.
Michael has a wealth of musical experiences, and has performed in a multitude of large and small ensembles, spanning many genres. Large ensembles include the University of Pittsburgh Varsity Marching Band, University of Pittsburgh Pep Band, University of Pittsburgh Symphonic Band, University of Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, University of Pittsburgh Jazz Ensemble, IUP Symphony Band, IUP University Chorus, IUP Wind Ensemble, and the Allegheny Brass Band. Small ensembles include The Allies of the Boulevard, Kappa Kappa Psi Brass Quintet, Kappa Kappa Psi Wind Quintet, Kappa Kappa Psi Trumpet Ensemble, IUP Trumpet Ensemble, Legacy Brass Quintet and the Plum Brass Quintet. He also has experience performing in pit orchestras for musicals, performing for Nine and Legally Blonde during his tenure at Pitt.
Michael is a passionate music educator, and has taught in a variety of settings. He has maintained a private studio of trumpet and horn students since 2018, with many of his students making honors bands such as the Alle-Kiski Honors Band and PMEA All-State Honors Band. As a Music Instructor at Chatham University’s Music and Arts Day Camp, Michael taught K-4 General Music, as well as courses in Conducting, Pep Band, and Digital Music Technology. As Assistant Director of the Plum High School Band, he brought in various guest clinicians (such as The Brass Roots and Professor Alan Hood), organized extracurricular field trips to the University of Pittsburgh and Slippery Rock University, and coached chamber music ensembles. His chamber music ensembles have performed at venues such as the National Aviary, Chick-Fil-A, and the Benedum Center. Currently, Michael is the Director of Bands in the Mt. Pleasant Area School District, where he teaches 7-12 Band (Symphonic, Jazz, and Marching), as well as middle school general music.
Mike Lockman, 2nd Cornet
Mike Lockman has been a member of the Allegheny Brass Band for a little more than seven years. He started off playing Eb cornet. When there was a need for someone to fill the Eb Soprano Cornet chair Mike stepped up to meet the challenge. Since then Michael has moved to the second row of the cornet section. He is a life long musician. He started trumpet when his dad purchased him a used trumpet for $50.00 when he was 10 years old. Mike is a graduate of The Mary Pappert School of music at Duquesne University. He holds a BS M Ed and MM.Ed. Mike has studied trumpet with Charles Hois, Edwin Shiner, and most recently Chad Winkler of the PSO. Mike recently retired from the Canon McMillan school district after directing numerous award-winning bands within the district for 35 years. Mike has performed with a variety of ensembles in the Pittsburgh area. Presently he is a member of the Pittsburgh Philharmonic Orchestra and the West Hills Symphonic Band in addition to the Allegheny Brass Band. Previous performing venues include the Pittsburgh Symphony (side by side) Pittsburgh Metro Italian Band, numerous big bands, and solo appearances with the Washington And Jefferson Wind Ensemble. A recent stint with the rock band “Brass Impact” was most gratifying. There he could play as loud and high as possible and the audience loved it. A trumpet player’s dream. Mike also accepts freelance playing engagements as they come up. Two of his children are musicians in their own right. Ashley a flutist and Brittany an Oboist. Michael resides in Peters Township.
Tim Leenerts, 3rd Cornet
Tim Leenerts joined the Allegheny Brass Band in 2017, shortly after moving to the Pittsburgh area. He also plays in the Community Band South trumpet section, and sounds taps at veterans’ burials for Bugles Across America. In Colorado, Tim performed with the Cheyenne (Wyo.) Symphony, Pikes Peak Brass Band, Little London Winds, Thornton Community Band, Loveland Concert Band, Park Hill Brass Quintet, and Alpine Brass Quintet. Lucky to be surrounded by excellent (and patient) instructors, Tim’s most influential teachers were S. Gilbert Garcia and Ron Miles.
After working as a newspaper reporter for several years, Tim taught music for 17 years at elementary, middle and high schools in Denver and Colorado Springs. He is currently starting his son Alex on the trombone. Tim has a B.A. degree in journalism from Colorado State University.
John Doven, 3rd Cornet
John Doven joined the ABB in 2021. He is a graduate of Carrick High School and the University of Pittsburgh. Before his retirement, John was a Master Sergeant in the PA Army National Guard. John played bugle in the U.S. Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps and he continues to play events for Bugles Across America. In addition to the ABB, John is a member of The Pine Creek Community Band and the Ingomar Methodist Church Orchestra. He retired from SG Morris, a hydraulic equipment supplier, in 2014. He and his wife Marianne live in McCandless Township.
Courtney Geary, Cornet
Courtney Geary began her career as a middle school band director in the North Allegheny school district in the fall of 2006. In addition to directing the sixth through eighth grade concert bands at Carson Middle School, she also conducts the school’s extracurricular Jazz Band and teaches general music. Earlier in her career she also served as the assistant marching band director and conducted a jazz ensemble at the high school. In 2011, she was a recipient of the NSTOY Apple Award for Excellence in Teaching. Previously, she studied trumpet with renowned educator and performer Dr. Stephen Hawk at Slippery Rock University while earning simultaneous degrees in Music Education and Mathematics. She also obtained a Master of Education degree in Secondary Education Mathematics from SRU. Courtney joined ABB in 2010 and briefly served as associate conductor during her five years with the band. After taking some time off to help balance her time between her NA work and volunteer work with Urban Impact Foundation Pittsburgh, Courtney returned to ABB in 2022. Outside of her musical endeavors, she enjoys spending time with her mini labradoodle, Rory.