Music Directors & Collaborative Artists
Westwinds recruits Music Professionals from the Calgary area to lead our musical programs.
Anita Perlau (Joined 2012)
Anita has had the privilege of working with singers spanning in age from three to seventy – the young and the young at heart! She is passionate about ensuring that her students have opportunities to develop their own musical literacy while nurturing their love of singing!
Anita has enjoyed a varied career in the field of music education as an elementary school music specialist, choral conductor of children and adult community choirs, workshop clinician and university lecturer.
As a life long learner, Anita strives for the elusive “best practices” of a music educator. Anita has advanced certificates in both the Kodály and Orff philosophies, a Master of Education (music education) from the University of Alberta and completed the summer program at the Kodály Institute in Kesckemet, Hungary.
Currently, Anita is the coordinator and an instructor of the Early Childhood Kodály Musicianship program at Mount Royal University Conservatory in Calgary. In addition, she teaches music education courses at the University of Alberta. She is the President of the Alberta Kodály Association, wife to the most supportive husband and Mom to two awesome teenagers!
Anne Gray (Joined 2001)
Anne Gray began her post-secondary studies at the University of North Texas, and holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Calgary. Her experience includes teaching a Kodaly-based music program for grades 3-6 with the Calgary Board of Education, pre-school Kodaly classes at Mt. Royal Conservatory, past director of Westwinds Music Society's Green Choir and Women's Choir and current director of its Choral Ensemble, and thirteen years of high school choir teaching at Central Memorial High School. She currently teaches music at WO Mitchell elementary school. Anne also works as a guest clinician, conductor and adjudicator with school and community choirs.
Anne's passion as a choir conductor and teacher is to help choirs discover a path to improving vocal technique, musical literacy, performance expression, and appreciation of music's rich offerings.
Recently Anne was presented the 2021 Con Spirito Award by Choir Alberta. "Presented annually, the Con Spirito Awards recognize the spirit and dedication of individuals and their commitment to choral music in their local communities."
Chris Herard (Joined 2012)
Chris Herard is a highly sought after educator, conductor, performer, clinician, adjudicator and producer from Calgary, Alberta, Canada. He has been involved in music education for over 25 years as a performer, instructor, director and choreographer. He is currently Director of Bands at Bishop Carroll High School and also directs for the Westwinds Music Society.
Chris’ ensembles have won numerous gold medals at top-level events around the world. Chris holds bachelor degrees in Music and in Education from the University of Calgary, a Master’s Degree in Music Education from the University of Hawaii and has presented at many conferences and workshops.
Chris often adjudicates and guest conducts at many local, national and international events. Through his appointment to the International Judging Bureau of the World Association of Marching Showbands he has judged the European Championships (Germany), National Championships in Taiwan and Hong Kong and numerous World Championships held in the USA, Brazil, Denmark, Malaysia, and Taiwan. In 2014, Chris was appointed to the Board of Directors of WAMSB International. His work as an educator, conductor, adjudicator and musician has also taken him to Japan, Thailand and throughout North America . Chris has been appointed to the “Sudler Shield” jury, an international panel of the John Phillip Sousa Foundation which awards excellence in band worldwide.
As a performer, Chris has travelled around the world as a multi-instrumentalist and singer and has well over 20 recordings to his credit. His band - the Heebee-jeebees, have received numerous CARA awards and nominations - the “Grammys” of A Cappella. (Their music is available around the world on iTunes.) Chris was inducted into the Canadian A Cappella Hall of Fame in 2009. He has also produced many recordings for other artists, and has composed and recorded many jingles and commercials.
Chris is very passionate about music education and its benefit for students. Chris is a founding member, and sits on the board of CADME, the Calgary Association for the Development of Music Education, an organization that has proudly granted over $1,000,000 to local music education initiatives over the past decade. A highlight for Chris was coordinating and directing the largest band ever assembled in Calgary – close to 4000 students celebrating music education at the Juno awards. Chris was also appointed to the Alberta Education Arts Curriculum Working Group charged with re-developing the curriculum for K-12 students in Alberta.
Chris is a member of Phi Beta Mu, the Alberta Band Association, The Canadian Academy of Arts and Sciences, The American Federation of Musicians, the National Association for Music Education, the World Association of Marching Show Bands, and sits on the board of the Alberta International Band Festivals.
Chris resides in Calgary with his wife, two young children and a chocolate lab.
Jane McLauchlin (Joined 2013)
Jane McLauchlin knew at a young age she wanted to be a teacher. Along with growing up in a house full of music, the decision to pursue a career as a music teacher became clear during a Grade 7 band class. Since then, she has had a successful career teaching Junior High School Concert and Jazz Band, Elementary and General Music and African Drumming in Calgary for 30 years. She received her Bachelor of Music degree and her teaching certification from the University of Calgary and has since taught at a variety of schools in Calgary, most recently, the North Campus of the Arts Centered Learning Program at Sir John Franklin School.
Her bands have regularly received ‘Superior’ rankings, have won numerous awards and have travelled extensively throughout Alberta, Saskatchewan and British Columbia. She has been guest conductor at the Calgary Summer Band Workshop and the Northern Alberta Junior High Honour Band and most recently, adjudicator for Grade 1 bands at the Alberta International Band Festival.
She became involved in the Westwinds Music Society by joining several of the bands to try out life on the ‘other side of the baton’ and plans to continue to participate in the Wind Orchestra and the Gold South Jazz Band.
She has toured and performed in China and Eastern Europe with Westwinds and participates annually in ‘adult band camp’ with renowned guest conductors in Canmore.
Jane is inspired by her students every day and takes great joy from watching these young people grow into accomplished, confident musicians with a love and appreciation for being a part of the exceptional experience of band and all that entails. She is excited and honoured to be invited to be the Westwinds Blue Concert Band director and is looking forward to working with this inspired and keen group of adults.
Jeremy Legault (Joined 2013)
Mr. Jeremy Legault has a very active musical career both as a performer and music educator. Currently, Jeremy is the Director of Bands at St. Mary's High School in Calgary AB, a comprehensive music program which incorporates both Classical and Jazz instruction in two Concert Bands and two large Jazz Bands. In the Spring of 2012 the Jazz 1 Big Band was the featured group during the "National Child Mental Health and Wellness Symposium", and in the Spring of 2013 was the featured guest during the "National ERDI Superintendent Conference", representing students for all Fine Arts across Canada. St. Mary's Music Program has been awarded local and international awards, and is very active in Calgary's music community, frequently working with local musicians and clinicians, as well as world renowned CADME guest artists.
Jeremy is an active member within the Calgary music community. In 2006 Jeremy co-founded the "Metropolitan Winds" performing the role of Artistic Director and Principal Conductor until the Spring of 2013. Currently Jeremy is director of the "Silver Jazz Band" within Calgary's "Westwinds Organization". He is an executive and performing member (Trumpet) with the "Alberta Winds" Wind Ensemble. In January of 2013, Jeremy founded the Ismaili Community Youth Music Program and is currently the organization's Director of Bands. Jeremy is on staff with the "Calgary Stampede Show Band" teaching brass techniques and assisting with conducting the full ensemble. Jeremy is the Alberta International Band Festival Honor Concert Band Coordinator, working each year with the festival's finest high school musicians and guest conductors. Jeremy is an active guest conductor and clinician within both the Adult Community Band and School Band scenes in Calgary.
Jeremy received a Bachelor of Music from the University of Calgary (1999) and a Bachelor of Education from the University of Toronto (2001). After completing a Diploma in Wind Conducting from the University of Calgary (2003), Jeremy completed a Master of Music Degree, specializing in Wind Ensemble Conducting, while studying with Dale Lonis, Fraser Linklater and Earl Stafford at the University of Manitoba (2005-2006).
Jonathan Bell (Joined 2019)
Gold Jazz North
Jonathan Bell has been teaching students from grades 5-12 with the Calgary Board of Education since 2001. Since then, Concert Bands, Jazz Bands and Choirs under his direction have won numerous first place finishes and gold/platinum awards both at the national and international level. Big Bands under his tutelage have shared the stage with Luis Bonilla, Ingrid Jensen, Victor Goines, Wycliffe Gordon, Bryan Lynch, Ted Nash, Dick Oatts, Marcus Printup, Maria Schneider, Terell Stafford, and Gary Smulyan to name a few. He completed his Bachelor of Education at the University of Calgary, received his Bachelor of Music at Queen’s University, and his Diploma in Jazz Studies (Performance) from Grant MacEwan University in Edmonton.
Mr. Bell has had extensive musical experience playing in over a dozen professional musicals, numerous private and public dates, in addition to working with Carnival Cruise Lines as a Showband musician and arranger. Mr. Bell is currently active and in demand as a clinician, guest conductor and adjudicator.
In addition to his work as a clinician and adjudicator, Mr. Bell has been actively involved in developing curriculum for the Calgary Board of Education's Locally Developed Courses since 2005. He is on the executive of CADME (Calgary Association for the Development of Music Education), heading up the All-Ages Jam and other initiatives. Mr. Bell approaches each ensemble with a passion for discovery and has a soft spot in his heart for quality repertoire and music that sounds good.
Katrina Archer (Joined 2022)
Katrina Archer believes firmly in the power of musical study to positively transform individuals, communities and society. Her approach has been shaped by the international El Sistema movement, which exposes at-risk youth to intense musical study on an instrument as a means to create positive social change within a community. To that end, she has been a part of instructing Philadelphia's "Play On Philly" program, as well as Calgary's Multicultural Youth Orchestra.
In additional to leading Westwinds' Green Strings, Katrina is the Musical Director of The Calgary Community String Orchestra. As a musician, Katrina has worked as an orchestral cellist in British Columbia's Symphony of the Kootenays before moving back to her hometown of Calgary to teach music in public schools. Katrina has been teaching at The Centre for Performing and Visual Arts at Central Memorial High School in Calgary for the past 8 years. At Central, she directs the Orchestra and Beginner Strings programs, and co-teaches the PVA music classes.
She holds a Bachelor of Music Education specializing in Secondary Education from the University of Calgary, and a Bachelor of Education from St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick.
Kevin Willms (Joined 1993)
Symphonic Band, Interim Artistic Director
Kevin Willms is thrilled to return to the dynamic Artistic Team of the Westwinds Music Society after being on leave for the 2019/20 season. Prior to that he served the organization as Artistic Director for 23 years. Other past contributions included founding the Choral Program in 1993 when he joined Westwinds as a director, and directing various ensembles over the years. These included the Mixed Choir, Women’s Choir, Green Band, Gold Jazz North, Red Jazz, and others. It was his vision to create the Symphonic Band for the 2018/19 season. Mr. Willms is proud of the performance-based travel opportunities that he led on behalf of Westwinds to destinations that included Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, Spain, Cuba, China and New Orleans.
In June of 2018, he “graduated” from public education after teaching instrumental and choral music for the Calgary Board of Education for 31 years. His ensembles consistently performed at “Superior” levels and received much recognition for their outstanding performances at local and international music festivals. Kevin has served the board of the Alberta International Band Festival in various roles, including Chair, Jazz Coordinator and Scholarship Coordinator since 1993. He is the Founding President of the Calgary Association for the Development of Music Education (CADME) and continues to serve this amazing organization.
Mr. Willms is active as a clinician, guest conductor, educational consultant and adjudicator. He is a contributor to the renowned publication, “Teaching Music Through Performance in Jazz”. Kevin has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the “Elkhorn Award” from the Alberta Band Association, “David Peterkin Memorial Award” from Phi Beta Mu, Pan Canadian Students Choice Award, Alberta Excellence in Teaching Award and the Tommy Banks Award, recognizing his long-term contribution to music education in Alberta. In 2018, he was inducted to the John Philip Sousa Legion of Honor at the MidWest Band and Orchestra Conference in Chicago.
Kathie Van Lare (Joined 2019)
Gold Jazz South
Born and raised in Calgary, Kathie has been teaching music in the Calgary area for over thirty years. Recently retired from the Calgary Board of Education where she taught at Centennial High School for the past fifteen years, Kathie continues teaching the jazz bands at Holy Trinity Academy in Okotoks and also directs the Foothills Music Society Concert Band.
She received her B. Mus (with Distinction) in Secondary School Music, Teacher Certification and a Diploma in Fine Arts (Wind Ensemble Conducting) from the University of Calgary. While on sabbatical, Kathie studied jazz music at St. Francis Xavier University (Nova Scotia). Over the years she has also participated in many additional workshops including on four occasions, the Band Director Academy offered by Jazz at the Lincoln Centre.
Kathie is active as a guest conductor and adjudicator throughout western Canada and has also served on faculty with Musicamrose and the Calgary Regional Summer Band Workshop. Concert and jazz bands under her direction have been the recipients of numerous “Gold Awards” and “Superior” ratings and her groups have been invited as featured performers on several occasions.
In addition to serving on the board for the Alberta Band Association and the organizing committee for the Alberta International Band Festival, Kathie has also served on music curriculum design committees and has presented at the Calgary Public Teachers’ Convention. In 2012 Kathie received the Alberta Band Association Elkhorn Award as the “Band Director of the Year” and in 2017 she received the Vondis Miller Legacy Award, again presented by the Alberta Band Association.
Kathie continues to be active as a free-lance musician (trumpet) and has performed with many groups including among others, the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, the Rocky Mountain Symphony Orchestra, Prime Time Big Band, Calgary Jazz Orchestra, Alberta Winds and Altius Brass.
Nathan Gingrich (Joined 2012)
Nathan Gingrich received his Bachelor of Music education degree from the University of Regina. Continued studies led him to Weimar Germany where he got his advanced artist's diploma in classical trombone performance and another degree in jazz and pop trombone performance from the Hochschule fuer Musik "Franz Liszt".
While in Germany, Mr. Gingrich co-founded a number of ensembles – travelling around Germany, France, Belgium, Austria and even to China to perform.
He taught trombone and jazz music theory at the Musik- und Kunstschule Jena for 4 years before moving to Calgary in 2006 to begin teaching music within the Calgary Board of Education. Mr. Gingrich taught at Thomas B. Riley Jr. High for 3 years and in the fall of 2009 Nathan began teaching at William Aberhart High School.
Mr. Gingrich has been Bronze Jazz Ensemble director with the Westwinds Music Society since September 2012. He is involved with the Calgary Association for the Development of Music Education (CADME) as well as co-ordinator for the annual "Holiday TubaFest" and "Slide Into Spring: Calgary's Trombone Day" events.
Mr. Gingrich can be seen regularly playing with a variety of ensembles in and around Calgary as well as leading masterclasses and workshops. Playing experience has seen him perform with the Prime Time Big Band, Calgary Jazz Orchestra, Calgary Creative Arts Ensemble, The New West Brass, and Altius Brass among others.
Nicole Hounjet (Joined 2013)
Green Choir, Women's Choir
Nicole Hounjet is the music director of the band, choral, and musical theatre programs at Foothills Composite High School/Alberta High School of Fine Arts. During her time at FCHS/AHSFA her ensembles have regularly taken part in Musicfest, Choralfest and Choralfest Jazz. Her choirs have performed in Vienna, Salzburg, Vancouver, and in Ottawa on Canada Day. An accomplished saxophonist, pianist, and vocalist, Nicole has studied conducting with Gregory Boers, Richard Nace, Rodney Eichenberger and Deborah Cairns and received the Royal Conservatory of Music Silver Medal in voice performance under Elaine Case.
Choral music is a huge passion of Nicole’s and she believes strongly that there is nothing more exciting than when voices come together to create something beautiful. As an educator, Nicole empowers her singers to use multiple musical strategies – theory, solfege, vocal technique, and conducting – to more fully engage in the music. Nicole also believes that it is the mutual trust that builds among the ensemble that takes a piece of music from being an enjoyable sing to a truly moving experience.
Recently Nicole was presented the 2021 Con Spirito Award by Choir Alberta. "Presented annually, the Con Spirito Awards recognize the spirit and dedication of individuals and their commitment to choral music in their local communities."
Ross McIntyre (Joined 1992)
Silver Concert, Wind Orchestra
Ross has been teaching music for The Calgary Board of Education for the past 25 years. He is currently enjoying his 16th year as director of bands at Lord Beaverbrook High School. Mr. McIntyre has worked extensively with junior and senior high school groups and honor bands throughout western Canada. In addition to his busy schedule Ross co-directs a beginning adult band with the Westwinds Music Society.
In 1993, Ross received the "Excellence in Teaching Award" from the Alberta government and in 2001 received the "Tommy Banks Award" for contribution to jazz education in Alberta. In 2006/07 Ross was honored to be chosen as one of the University of Calgary's "Top Forty Alumni". Ross along with co-producer, Samantha Whelan Kotkas and students from Lord Beaverbrook received funding from the Canadian Space Agency to create "From Blue To Red" - a hard cover children's book and interactive online e-book. "From Blue To Red" features the narration of Jazz legend, Diana Krall and three Canadian astronauts: Dr. Robert Thirsk, Julie Payette and David Saint- Jacques. Hard cover copies of "From Blue To Red" are available through Lord Beaverbrook High School and may also be viewed online at www.frombluetored.net or www.dubleuaurouge.net. "From Blue to Red" is the Winner of the 2013 Award for "Best Children's and Young Adult Book of the Year" from Alberta Publishers. Most recently Ross was honoured with a "2013 Prime Minister's Award for Teaching Excellence".
Scott Campbell (Joined 2019)
Scott Campbell joined the Calgary Board of Education in 2006 and the staff of MidSun School in the fall of 2007, where he led a very successful music program until June 2019. Throughout his tenure at MidSun, his concert and jazz bands were awarded numerous awards, including the Floyd Williamson Trophy for Most Outstanding Junior High Concert Band in 2010 and 2014, and the Quan Le Directors' Choice Award in 2018 at the Alberta International Band Festival in Calgary. He also completed the commissioning and premiere of Boom and Bust, a composition by renowned band composer Brian Balmages in 2018, in honour of MidSun's 20th anniversary. He was the Director of the Sherwood-Like-To-Play Community Band for 7 seasons until 2017. Mr. Campbell has also served on the Board of the Alberta Band Association, where he coordinated the Southern Alberta Junior Honour Band Program for 6 years.
He is in demand as a saxophone clinician and guest conductor, as well as a member of the faculties of the Vic Lewis Festival in Canmore and the Calgary Regional Summer Band Workshop since 2008. Mr. Campbell was inducted as a member of the prestigious Phi Beta Mu Bandmasters Fraternity in 2018 and was nominated by the parents and administration at MidSun for the Alberta Excellence in Teaching Awards in 2014.
Mr. Campbell currently teaches band and choir at Lord Beaverbrook High School. He is also excited to be leading Westwinds Music Society Green Concert Band.
Mr. Campbell holds a Bachelor of Music in Saxophone Performance from the University of Alberta and Bachelor of Education from the University of Calgary.
When he's not working, he loves spending time with wife, Elisabeth, and three sons, Evan, Nolan and Theo.
Ethan Hill (Joined 2021)
Collaborative Artist, Choral Ensemble
I am a composer and keyboardist from Western Canada. In addition to my interest in artistic undertakings, I am also interested in and draw inspiration from other fields such as cognitive psychology and historical linguistics. I often find myself considering these areas of study in connection with artistic practices; find myself considering motivational and exploratory functions of cognition in a musical context. In the past few years, I have focused on the subtle variations in context resulting from extended just intonation and plan to explore this domain of interest further.
I studied composition with Anna Höstman and piano with Bruce Vogt at the University of Victoria (BMus 2019), where I also held an organ scholar position at St. John the Divine Anglican Church and performed with groups such as Victoria Boroque and the University f Victoria Orchestra. In 2019, I relocated to Montreal to study the organ with Hans-Ola Ericcson at McGill University (Grad. Dip. 2020) and work as an organist at Christ Church Cathedral. Currently, I work in arts administration with the Quatuor Bozzini and as a musician with companies like the Alberta Ballet, Westwinds Music Society and the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada.
Collaborative Artist, Women's Choir
Marie Lewin has been with Westwinds since the Choral program was started in 1993, either as a choral conductor, or an accompanist. She is a well-known vocal accompanist for the Calgary Music Festival, Contemporary Showcase and NATS auditions, as well as a church musician. Marie also maintains an active piano studio.