Wardell King | Program Director & Arranger

Wardell King | Program Director & Arranger

Mr. King is currently in his 23rd year as an independent music educator, arranger, consultant and performer with a specialization in marching percussion. Mr. King is currently the percussion caption head/arranger for Highland (2009 Arizona Division 1 State Champion). Desert Ridge, and Mountain View High Schools in Arizona. Mr. King also serves as the Executive Director / Caption Head of Vision Indoor Percussion. Mr. King has previously served as caption head/arranger/clinician for various other high schools in the state of Arizona. Mr. King also served as the marching percussion specialist at Northern Arizona University (2001-2003), bass drum/ snare drum, instructor for the 2006 Drum Corps International Division II World Champion Academy Drum and Bugle Corps (2003-2007), and the WGI Scholastic A Finalist / Champion Page High School.(Consultant 2001-2005)

As the owner of King Percussion LLC, “Championship Concepts For Percussion,” Mr. King has worked with groups in Arizona, California, New Hampshire, Nevada, and Kentucky in both the marching and indoor percussion arenas. In his twenty two years as an adjudicator and percussion designer/instructor, he has worked with more than 25 different percussion programs at the high school, college and drum corp levels.

As a creative percussion arranger, Wardell’s percussion writing is designed to closely integrate concert and marching percussion techniques to enhance all components of the musical score. Wardell has a strong teaching philosophy guided to offer life lessons through music and dedicated practice. Excelling educationally and competitively in both the local and national circuit, Mr. King is in high demand as an educator and clinician. He provides both rudimental and drum set lessons to students of all ages and educational backgrounds.

With extensive studies in the jazz arts, Mr. King is part of The W. Quartet, who continue to play for audiences around the Phoenix Area. Wardell proudly endorses Vic Firth Sticks, Zildjian Cymbals, Pearl Drums, and Remo Drumheads.

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  Taylor Willis-Highers | Ensemble Coordinator & Design Staff

Taylor Willis-Highers | Ensemble Coordinator & Design Staff

Taylor Willis-Highers has taught percussion in the valley for several years. He has worked with multiple ensembles including Basha High School, Corona Del Sol High School, Tempe High School,and Gilbert High School.

Currently Taylor works at Perry High School in Chandler, Arizona as their Percussion Caption Head for the last 8 years, Mountain View Mesa High School for the last 4 years and Vision Percussion as the Battery Manager/Coordinator.

He holds a BA in European History and Linguistics from Arizona State University and resides in Tempe, Arizona. Taylor is also a National Recruiter for Medix in Scottsdale, AZ and an avid theatre and film patron.

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  Peter Beckhart | Drill Designer & Choreographer

Peter Beckhart | Drill Designer & Choreographer

Peter Beckhart has performed, instructed, and designed many competitive shows in the marching arts. His performing experience includes six years of DCI, aging out with the Concord Blue Devils. Peter also performed with the Riverside Community College winter drumline in 2011 and 2012.

As a visual designer for fall marching bands and spring productions, Peter has had the opportunity to work with many ensembles since 2009. He currently designs drill for Ayala High School, Coronado High School (El Paso, TX), James Martin High School (Arlington, TX) and many other fall programs across the country. Peter is also a sought after choreographer for some of the most established marching bands and winter drumlines in the country including Leander High School (Austin, TX), North Shore H.S. (Houston, TX), Ayala H.S. (Chino Hills, CA), Mt. Carmel H.S. (San Diego, CA), RCC winter percussion, and Dark Sky Percussion.

In the drum corps world, Peter taught the Blue Devils 'B' in 2012 and has been on visual staff of the 17-time World Champion Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps since 2013. He is also the drill designer for the Mandarins Drum and Bugle Corps from Sacramento, CA.
Peter is humbled to have opportunities to work with some of the best programs and students in the world and is always striving to be a better instructor and designer. He lives in Anaheim, CA.

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  Matt Filosa | Designer & Arranger

Matt Filosa | Designer & Arranger

Matt Filosa is a freelance percussionist, composer, and arranger currently residing in Fort Worth, Texas. Co-owner of the marching arts design company Synced Up Designs, Matt writes, designs for, and teaches marching bands and indoor percussion groups all over the country. Matt is the sound designer and front ensemble arranger for several WGI and DCI finalist groups, most notably PIW group Music City Mystique (co-arranger)  and the Cadets (Sound Design).

Matt earned his Bachelors in Percussion Performance from the University of Florida (2007) and Masters in Percussion Performance from the University of North Texas (2009). While attending UNT, Matt wrote for and taught the Green Brigade Drumline. In 2011, Matt was accepted into the Florida State percussion studios doctoral program, where his responsibilities included teaching the Marching Chiefs Drumline (2011-2015). Currently ABD, Matt plans to earn his Doctorate in Percussion Performance in the summer of 2018.

Before starting work on his doctorate, Matt was the Assistant Band Director/ Percussion Specialist at Rider High School in Wichita Falls, Texas. During this time, Matt created the popular stage show “Electronica” and “Dreamscape”, which later turned into the professional stage show “Nebulas”.

Matt has performed on several professional recordings, recently featured on Dr. Omar Carmenates new CD Gaia Theory, released by Rattle Records. He has also performed at WASBE in Singapore and Ohio, CBDNA, TMEA, FMEA, and the Percussive Arts Society National Convention on several occasions, including performances with the Florida State percussion ensemble (2011), Bluecoats percussion ensemble (2007), and clinic presenter with Music City Mystique(2016).

Passionate about the marching arts, it is Matt’s continued goal to inspire, educate, and promote music education and participation in the arts. Matt is endorsed by Innovative Percussion, Pearl/Adams, Evans drum heads, and Sabian Cymbals.

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  Thomas Buchanan | Front Ensemble Caption Head

Thomas Buchanan | Front Ensemble Caption Head

Thomas Buchanan is an active front ensemble instructor in the Phoenix metro. Since December of 2014 he has taught at various high schools including Casa Grande Union and Mesa. Thomas has also worked with Shadow Drum and Bugle Corps based in Madison, Wisconsin. He currently works with Vision Percussion, Perry High School, and Basha High School, his alma mater.

Thomas’s performance experience includes The Academy Drum and Bugle Corps 2013-2016, where he was section leader for his last two years. He has also performed with Breakthrough Percussion and the percussion ensembles at Chandler-Gilbert Community College and Northern Arizona University. He has been taught by instructors such as Dr. Mark Eichenberger, Tim Berg, and Dustin Roa and impacted by many others, especially students and colleagues.

Away from front ensembles, Thomas is a barista, an indoor rock climber, and a fervent reader of short fiction and philosophy.

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  Robert Hatley | Front Ensemble Technician

Robert Hatley | Front Ensemble Technician

Robert Hatley is a percussionist and music educator currently studying at Northern Arizona University. At NAU, Robert participated in the Lumberjack Drum Line and served in a leadership capacity for two of his three seasons.

Other collegiate ensembles with which he has performed include the NAU Wind Symphony, NAU Symphony Orchestra, NAU Symphonic Band, the NAU Percussion Ensemble, and the NAU Panorama Steel Band.

During the summers of 2014-2017, he performed as a member of the Academy Front Ensemble under the percussion instruction of Ike Jackson, Cisco Hance, Dr. Mark Eichenberger, and Lee Beddis.

He will graduate from NAU in December 2018 with a Bachelor of Music Education degree.

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  Josh Stovall | Sound Design Technician

Josh Stovall | Sound Design Technician

Josh Stovall is a musician who specializes in mallet percussion and music technology. He is currently studying towards a Bachelor of Arts in Music at the Arizona State University Herberger School of the Arts. As a performer, Josh has been a part of esteemed ensembles such as the Phoenix Boys Choir, the Arizona Regional Band, the ASU Symphony Orchestra, and the Pan Devils Steel Drum Band.

As an arranger, Josh has provided music for programs across the valley including Highland HS, Perry HS, Skyline HS, Corona del Sol HS, Mountain View HS, and Desert Mountain HS. As an educator, Josh teaches percussion classes and private lessons. He currently teaches at Corona del Sol HS, Skyline HS, and Vision Percussion.

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  Justin Mons | Visual Caption Head & Design Staff

Justin Mons | Visual Caption Head & Design Staff

Justin Mons is an Arizona native starting his 3rd year with Vision Percussion. Justin’s performance experience includes 4 years with the Pride of Casa Grande marching band, 2 years with the Casa Grande Scholastic open drumline, 7 years with The Arizona Academy, and over 10 years of various collegiate and independent Jazz and concert ensembles.

Over the last decade, Justin has been able to work with Basha, Gilbert, Corona Del sol, Millennium and various other ensembles in Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Utah.

Most recently he is coming off a very successful 6th season as a visual instructor with the Sacramento Mandarins Drum and Bugle Corps.

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  David Larkins | Visual Staff

David Larkins | Visual Staff

David Larkins is currently the Assistant Band Director at Casteel High School and resides in Gilbert, Arizona while finishing his Bachelors Degree in Music Education from Arizona State University. He writes and designs marching band and indoor drumline productions for schools in Arizona and Mississippi.

His performance background includes participating in the ASU Sun Devil Marching Band and the Phoenix Suns Drumline. He was also a member of the Santa Clara Vanguard in 2014 & 2015, traveling throughout the United States and internationally in Taiwan.

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  Kevin Fitzsimmons | Bass  Technician & Social Media Coordinator

Kevin Fitzsimmons | Bass  Technician & Social Media Coordinator

Kevin Fitzsimmons has been working with the marching percussion groups at Basha and Mountain View High Schools for four years, and at Desert Vista High School for two. Past schools he has spent his time with are: Desert Ridge, Skyline, and Perry. He has recently gained clinician experience with Paz Music, and Red Oak HS in Texas, as well as a new position as a Bass Technician with the Oregon Crusaders Drum and Bugle Corps. This will be his fourth year alongside the students and staff of Vision Percussion and he couldn't be more optimistic about the direction of the organization.

His performance experience includes several seasons of WGI and DCI, in groups like Arizona State University, The Blue Knights, and The Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps. Kevin has benefit from renown instructors such as Ralph Hardimon and Mike McIntosh.

A graduate of Highland High School, Kevin currently resides in Tempe, AZ, and is pursuing a degree in Software Engineering from Arizona State University. In his spare time he enjoys studying photography and videography, drinking specialty espresso, and listening to rap and hip-hop.

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  Robert Davis | Bass Technician

Robert Davis | Bass Technician

Robert Davis is a percussion educator from Arizona. He currently works with Desert Ridge and Highland High School as a bass drum and marching technician.

Over his twenty seven years of teaching he has worked with top rated drumline programs all over the valley; Including, Trevor G. Browne, Desert Edge (2008 gold  WGAZ Champions) and Marcos DeNiza.

He has studied with Steve Hemphill at Northern Arizona University and worked alongside some of the top names from DCI and WGI, including Ralph Hardimon  and Tom Float.

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  Kristina Haney | Cymbal Technician

Kristina Haney | Cymbal Technician

Kristina Haney is an Arizona native who has performed with a variety of medal-winning ensembles in and out of state. Her marching career started with Basha High School where she was a member of the cymbal line for indoor drumline as well as the marching band.

After graduation, she marched with the Arizona State Sun Devil Marching Band (2009-2010). She joined Dark Sky Percussion in 2010 and was section leader in 2011. In 2012, she moved to California to march Pulse Percussion. Kristina has also marched drum corps with Cascades (2010) and Pacific Crest (2011).

Kristina has taught various ensembles in Arizona including Williams Field High School and Mesa High School, as well as in California with Pacifica High School.

In her free time, Kristina is a concert photographer, volunteers at an animal shelter and enjoys spending time with her dog, Shadow.

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  Jamie Tate | Cymbal Technician

Jamie Tate | Cymbal Technician

Jamie Tate has 25 years of performing and teaching experience in the Marching Arts. He has had the pleasure of collaborating with and learning from many influential people in the percussion world; Steve Hemphill, Jimmy Madonia, Ralph Hardimon, Mike Talerico, Seth Woodard and many others. Over the years Jamie has worked with many different high school marching bands in Arizona as a member of the percussion staff as well as various indoor programs.

In addition to his work with the cymbal section, Jamie is also a full-time Firefighter/Paramedic and an Adjunct Faculty member at Mesa Community College in the Fire Science/EMT Department where he has instructed for several years in the EMT and Paramedic programs.

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