Adjudicators & Clinicians

Frank Lee

Concert Choir Adjudicator
From a very young age, Mr. Lee’s passion was solely connected to music making. With the hope to connect hearts, bridge divides and inspire young choristers to open the horizons of their mind, he spent the first seventeen years of his career as the choral and instrumental director at Seycove Secondary School in North Vancouver. It is here that he established his first vocal jazz ensemble, that were featured in various festivals throughout Western Canada and Washington State. Additionally, his chamber choir was honoured with the distinction of Youth Choir of the World at the International Choral Festival, Kathaumixw. Mr. Lee was also a member of the Faculty at Douglas College, directing the chorus, who was named the top choir at the Canadian National Choral Festival and had their solo debut concert in 2011 at the prestigious Carnegie Hall. In 2014, Mr. Lee became the Choral Director at Carson Graham Secondary School, where his approach has materialized many additional musical opportunities for students, including performing at the TD International Jazz Festival. He was invited to direct the Saskatchewan Provincial Honour Choir and is the newly appointed Artistic Director of The Amabilis Singers in Greater Vancouver.

Frank received his undergraduate music degree from the University of Victoria studying trombone with Ian McDougall. He has recently finished his graduate studies in choral conducting, under Dr. Graeme Langager, at the University of British Columbia. He is sought after as a clinician, adjudicator and guest conductor across Canada and Washington State. Frank has served as the chair for the BCMEA Honour Vocal Jazz Ensemble, Kiwanis Vocal Jazz Festival, and is currently on the Canadian Rocky Mountain Music Festival Advisory Committee as well as Musicfest Canada.

Gareth Jones

Concert Band Adjudicator
Gareth Jones is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Calgary and is the director of the University’s Wind Ensemble as well as the Symphonic Band. He is also the Director of the Alberta Winds, Calgary’s professional wind ensemble. In 2014 he was named the conductor of the National Youth Band of Canada. He was Assistant Principal Trumpet with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra from 1992 to 2007 and continues to play with the CPO whenever his conducting schedule allows. Before that, he held the same position with the Tulsa Philharmonic Orchestra. He has studied conducting with the renowned pedagogues Jorma Panula, Gustav Meier, Michael Haithcock, and Michael Jinbo. He has conducted ensembles from across Western Canada as well as Mexico and the United States.

Mr. Jones’s musical activities are greatly varied. He has appeared as guest conductor and clinician with over two hundred orchestras and wind ensembles, been featured on Juno nominated blues CDs, appeared on CBC radio as a soloist and chamber musician, been a guest lecturer with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, been an adjudicator at music festivals across Canada, as well as conducting honour bands across Canada and was a reviewer for the recently updated Royal Conservatory of Music trumpet syllabus. He placed first among North American competitors in the 1996 Ellesworth-Smith International Trumpet Guild Solo Competition, placing third worldwide. He can be heard playing chamber music, jazz, blues, and rhythm and blues with various groups around Calgary. As a conductor he founded the Calgary Honour Band and the University of Calgary Brass Choir. He was also a founding member of the chamber ensemble “Rosa Selvatica” and has been a featured soloist with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra on several occasions.

He studied conducting at the Pierre Monteux Institute and Canada’s National Arts Centre and received his Master of Music in conducting from the University of Calgary. He studied trumpet at Northwestern University with renowned pedagogue Vincent Cichowicz, where he won the prestigious concerto competition and a scholarship for performing excellence. Gareth Jones is a Yamaha Artist.

Kirk Wassmer

Concert Band Adjudicator
Kirk has just retired after a 35 year career teaching band. For the past 23 years he was at Didsbury High School in Didsbury, Alberta, a rural community north of Calgary where more than half of the school’s population was involved in the Music Program. In addition to numerous local and regional performances, groups from Didsbury High School travelled across Canada and internationally to Scotland, England and Spain. Ensembles from DHS consistently received high accolades for their concert and festival performances. Prior to Didsbury Kirk taught at G.P. Vanier Secondary School in Courtenay, BC and at Revelstoke Secondary School. Students from all of Kirk’s programs can be found across Western Canada performing and teaching music.

Kirk received his undergraduate degree from the University of Saskatchewan, and he has a Master of Music from the University of Missouri – Columbia. In addition to his professional duties, Kirk has served on the Boards of the Alberta Band Association, the Canadian Band Association and the Coalition for Music Education in Canada. Kirk has been a part of the Kamloops Interior Summer School of Music, a three-week K-12 summer music program, since 2015, most recently as Band Department Head.

In 2008, he was honoured to be recognized as a semi-finalist in Alberta Education’s Excellence in Teaching Awards. In 2017 Kirk received the David Peterkin Award in recognition of exemplary and consistent contribution to bands and band education from the Mu Alpha chapter of Phi Beta Mu. In 2019 he was presented with the Elkhorn Band Director of the Year award by the Alberta Band Association, and in 2022 received the Vondis Miller Legacy Award. In 2024, Kirk was thrilled to receive the Keith Mann/National Arts Centre Outstanding Band Director Award from MusicFest – The Nationals