Guest Conductors


Doug Woolverton

Tommy Poole is Director of Jazz Studies and assistant professor of music at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Oklahoma. He is an active saxophonist and woodwind doubler in a variety of genres. He has recorded as saxophonist on numerous commercially available CDs ranging in style from classical, to jazz, to pop. He has performed professionally with Ramsey Lewis, The Woody Herman Orchestra, Lionel Hampton, Andy Montanez, Glenn Monroig, Diane Schuur, Joe Williams, Mercer Ellington, and Dianne Reeves among many others.

Poole has composed and arranged works for a variety of settings from commercial showbands, to jazz big bands, to full-sized studio orchestras. His orchestrations have been featured on at least seven commercially available CDs. His first two CDs as producer, On Cue-the Music of Seamus Blake (2012) and Out Front (2015) featured arrangements, compositions, and performances by Poole and received critical acclaim from, JazzEd Magazine, Currentland, and Oklahoma Magazine.

Poole has presented workshops, or served as guest artist/performer, guest conductor, clinician, and/or adjudicator at California State University Long Beach, California State University Los Angeles, Eastfield College, Northeastern State University, Los Angeles Community College, Pittsburg State University, Slippery Rock University, Tulsa Community College, and The University of Arkansas (Fayetteville). He has served in similar fashion for countless regional high school conferences, honor bands, and jazz festivals. His research on metric modulations in jazz has been published in Jazz Inside Magazine. He serves as President of Oklahoma Jazz Educators (OKJE) and is a member of the Jazz Education Network, College Music Society, and the National Association for Music Education.

He received his B.M. and D.M.A. from The University of Texas at Austin and his M.M. from The University of Miami.


Matt Wilson

Dr. Grant Manhart joined the Northern State University faculty in 1998. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Trumpet Performance from the University of Wisconsin, a Master’s Degree in Trumpet Performance and Jazz Studies from the Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music, and a Doctorate of Music in Trumpet Performance, Literature and Performance, with minors in Jazz Studies and Music History from Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. His primary trumpet instructors were the legendary William Adam, Dominic Spera, Edmund Cord, EugeneBlee, Frank Brown, Scott Johnston, and Donald Whitaker. Other studies include Robert Nagel, Bobby Lewis, John McNeil, Bobby Shew, Charlie Davis, Jerry Hey, Gary Grant , Roy Poper, Charles Schleuter, Claude Gordon, and Uan Rasey. His jazz studies include such luminaries as David Baker, Dominic Spera, Frank Brown, Rick Van Matre, and Richard Davis. 
His performing career includes tours with Broadway shows, the Buddy Rich Band, Carol Channing, Rita Moreno, June Valli, Carmen Cavallero, the Clyde Beatty Cole Brothers Circus, performing as Roy Eldridge touring the United States with the Columbia Artists Gene Krupa Band, and a stint in Puerto Rico with the Latin Jazz group, Picante. As a bandleader, he has created hundreds of performing opportunities for professionals and students, including his touring brass and percussion group, the “Dominant 7”, a 5 time recipient of a South Dakota Touring Arts Grant. 
Not content to merely perform, he has transcribed, arranged, or composed over 200 different works for his jazz ensemble, Symphonic band and the “Wolfpack Pep Band”. He has composed and recorded several commercials, using faculty and students at Northern State University as the vocal and instrumental recording artists. He has performed as a vocal talent for various media productions. 
An ongoing learner and creator, he pursued opportunities in online course development and teaching, and created an online “Music Appreciation” course which runs 3 sections every semester. He is currently developing a “History of Rock and Roll” course to be offered fall 2016. His energy unbounded, he creates real estate businesses and continues to do so, and engages and sponsors entrepreneurs inside and outside the university. 
He creates hardwood furniture and is a general handyman and builder. He gardens in the summers and has created an award winning hot sauce with the peppers he grows. His passions include fishing and lure making, and ice skating and playing with his 4 children: Twins Logan and Chase, 18, Louis, 9 and Claire, 5. His wife Is Marcia, an accomplished pianist, runs the house, his life, the children and the real estate from their 12 acre hobby farm outside Aberdeen.


Tracy Heavner

John Kizilarmut has performed with a wide range of artists and groups including Aretha Franklin, Doc Severinsen, Matt Wilson, Jimmy Heath, Branford Marsalis, Logan Richardson, Clark Terry, New York Voices, Ana Gasteyer, Conspirare, Shirley Jones, DJ Starscream, and the Des Moines Symphony. He is a frequent guest performer and clinician at percussion and jazz festivals throughout the midwest, including Texas, Iowa, and Nebraska Days of Percussion; Tallcorn, Cherokee, and Iowa City Jazz Festivals. In 2013, John was a featured artist along with with TOCA artist Jamal Mohamed and Marimba One artist Matthew Coley at the PASIC convention. He is also an active composer and arranger, and his works have been featured by many award winning music programs including the 2013 State Jazz champion Waukee High School Jazz Ensemble, Lake Central High School Band, several DCI Drum Corps, and the University of Texas percussion ensemble. As an educator, John has served as an adjunct faculty member at Drake University, Grinnell College, and Northwest Missouri State University. He currently resides in Kansas City, Missouri with his wife Nicole and son Evan.