Private Lessons

Robert E. Lee High School is extremely fortunate to have an outstanding staff of private lesson teachers. This program is designed to enrich and further the level of performance of the musician. One on one, individual instruction is one of the main contributing factors in the level of success of a band program. It is a general misconception that private lessons are set up for students who are “falling behind” or for those musicians that are “not as successful” on their instrument. While private lessons can still be highly beneficial in these cases, supplemental private lessons are designed and intended more for students that are advancing and proving success on their instrument.


The opportunity to study one-on–one with a professional musician is invaluable and has proven to be one of the most successful ingredients to individual achievement. Lessons are customized and tailored for each individual’s needs. Private lessons may occur before, during, and after the school day depending on availability. They are not required, but are highly recommended. Each teacher in accordance with their experience and credentials sets lessons prices. If you are interested in enrolling in private lessons, please contact the instructor directly using the information below. If you have any questions or concerns about the private lesson program in general, please contact a director.


Sue Bugg – Flute

Sue Bugg received a Bachelor of Music Education from Stephen F. Austin State University and a Master of Music from East Texas State University. She taught band in the East Texas area for 34 years and has recently retired from public school teaching. Mrs. Bugg is also an adjunct flute instructor at University of Texas at Tyler. Twelve flute students have attained the rank of Texas All State band, with numerous students reaching the Area and Region level. Mrs. Bugg’s playing experience includes: East Texas Symphony Orchestra – 7 years, Texas Shakespeare Festival Pit Orchestra – 14 years, and she frequently performs for various churches and events around the east Texas area.

Phone: (903) 530-9168


B.M.E. Stephen F. Austin State University

M.M. East Texas State University


Jessica Ogilvie – Flute

Jessica Ogilvie is currently the flute instructor at Kilgore College. She received a Bachelor of Music degree in flute performance from the University of Texas at Tyler, a Master of Music degree in flute performance from the University of North Texas, and is finishing a Master of Music degree in music theory. While attending UNT, she was a teaching fellow where she taught music theory fundamentals and aural skills. She has studied with Sue Bugg, Claudia Carroll, Terri Sundberg, Helen Blackburn, and Patricia George, and has performed for Clara Southworth, professor of flute at the Royal Academy of Music in London, Michel Debost, former professor of flute at the Paris Conservatory, and Matej Grahek, principal flutist of the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra. In addition to her duties at Kilgore College, she is also in demand as a private flute teacher and clinician in the East Texas area.

Phone: (903) 452-7787


B.M. University of Texas at Tyler

M.M. University of North Texas


Jeffrey Emge – Oboe

Dr. Jeffrey Emge is a native of Knoxville, Tennessee. After completing the Bachelor of Science in Music Education from Tennessee Tech University, he taught three years in the public schools of Tennessee. The M.M.E. was earned from Florida State University, where he studied conducting with James Croft and band arranging with Charles Carter. From 1988 until 1991 he was the Director of Bands at Hardaway High School in Columbus, Georgia, where his concert and marching bands won consistent Superior ratings. The DMA in conducting was earned from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where he was a conducting associate of Eugene Corporon and conducted the Northern Kentucky Chamber Players, an NEA-funded ensemble.. In 1994, Dr. Emge moved to Texas, where he was first Assistant Director, then Director of Bands at East Texas State University (now Texas A&M-Commerce). While at Commerce, he conducted the Wind Ensemble, Symphonic Band, co-directed the marching band, and taught graduate and undergraduate conducting and music education classes. In 2001, he was appointed Chair of the Department of Music at UT Tyler. Since then, he founded the student Wind Ensemble and oversaw a period of rapid growth within the department. Although he stepped down as department Chair in August of this year, he maintains an active schedule as Associate Professor of Music, frequent all-region band conductor, conductor of the Tyler Community Band, oboist throughout east Texas, and a studio of private students. Honors include recognition in the latest three editions of Who’s Who in America, guest lecturer and recitalist in China twice in 2006, one of only fifteen USA professors to win the 2006 Japan Seminar grant through the University of Pennsylvania, and the 2000 National Outstanding Sponsor award from Tau Beta Sigma. This month, the Wind Ensemble will release the first-ever UT Tyler Music Department CD, Entr’acte. Upcoming publications include 40 Modern Studies , the first major collection of original etudes for oboe since the 1800s. Dr. Emge’s hobbies include chess, camping, musical theatre, and international travel. He currently performs on a 2001 Marigaux oboe and a 2005 Loree english horn.

Phone: (903) 566-7091


B.M.E Tennessee Tech University

M.M.E. Florida State University

D.M.A. Cincinnati College – Conservatory of Music


Alicia Tennison – Oboe

Alicia Tennison holds her bachelor’s degree in music education from Stephen F. Austin State University where she studied oboe with Dr. John Goodall. She was the first recipient of SFASU’s Young Artist Competition. She has performed in France, Italy, Austria, and Germany. Alicia is a freelance musician in the east Texas area and has enjoyed teaching many of the area’s finest young oboists. As an educator, Alicia taught band in the public school venue for over a decade and also taught oboe for Tyler Junior College. Alicia enjoys teaching privately, playing for her church and spending time with her husband and three children.

Phone: (903) 586-0417


B.M.E. Stephen F. Austin State University




Tina Beason – Clarinet


Tina Beason received her Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baylor University.  She studied under Dr. Richard Shanley for 8 years during high school and college.  She taught band for 6 years in the Central Texas area before taking a break to stay home with her children.   Her teaching experience includes more than 25 years private lesson instruction, as well as teaching clarinet clinics and judging solo and ensemble contests.  Her students have earned chairs in All-Region, All-Area, and All-State bands, as well as first division ratings at solo and ensemble contest.  Currently she teaches orchestra at Bishop TK Gorman.

Phone: 903-526-4636 (home)

903-521-8606 (cell)


B.M.E.  Baylor University



Dan Stone – Bassoon

Dan Stone grew up in Tampa, Florida where he was twice selected 1st chair bassoon in the All-State Band. His professional career began at an early age with performances for Operas, Broadway style musicals, and University organizations. During the late ’70’s, Dan performed with the Air Force Band of the West before going back to school. While studying at St. Mary’s University, he performed with the San Antonio Symphony, S.A. Opera Guild, and several traveling Broadway Musicals. For many years he was principal Bassoon in the San Antonio Municipal Band. He continues to perform in the Tyler area and has several private students. He credits Mr. Allen Hopper for his early bassoon training in Florida and Mr. Ken Wolfson in Texas. He also studied with Mrs. Jan Schmidt while at band camp at Florida State University for several years. Dan also credits Mr. Dean Cassels and Mr. Joseph Kreines for their unwavering support during his Junior High and High School education.

Phone: (903) 930-0979


B.M.E. St. Mary’s University


Sarah Roberts – Saxophone

A native of Fort Madison, Iowa, Sarah Roberts made her soloist debut at the age of seventeen performing with the Southeast Iowa Symphony performing Henri Tomasi’s Concerto for saxophone and orchestra. The following year she was a featured soloist with the Des Moines Symphony in Des Moines, Iowa; and the World Youth Symphony Orchestra at the Interlochen Center for the Arts in Interlochen, Michigan. In 2008, Ms. Roberts made her European debut after she was invited to perform with the Juilliard School’s AXIOM Ensemble on their Beyond the Machine 7.0 – The Eye/Ear Collaboration concert at the Tanhalle in Zurch, Switzerland.

With an extremely diverse background in jazz and classical music, Ms. Roberts can be heard on recordings with the University of North Texas Wind Symphony and the Two O’Clock Lab Band. In addition to many university ensembles, Ms. Roberts has had an active free lance career in Michigan and Texas performing with a gamut of ensembles ranging from new music groups, to rock bands, to jazz groups and all points in between. Currently, she is a tenor saxophonist in Urban Renewal, a band dedicated to the music of Tower of Power; and a saxophonist in the Crosswinds Jazz Band. She has also had the privilege of performing with various groups such as the Dallas Wind Symphony, San Angelo Symphony, The O’Jays, and Little Feat.

Currently, Ms. Roberts has completed the coursework for a doctor of musical arts degree in saxophone performance under the instruction of Dr. Eric Nestler. While a graduate at the University of North Texas, Ms. Roberts was a Teaching Assistant for the Jazz Studies department as director of the Nine O’Clock Lab Band in 2010-2011, and from 2007-2010, she held a Teaching Fellowship as an instructor of classical saxophone where her responsibilities included weekly lessons with undergraduate performance, music education, and jazz studies majors and coaching saxophone quartets. In addition to her responsibilities at North Texas, Ms. Roberts had been an extremely active music instructor and clinician in the North Dallas area since 2004. In 2010 she became the conductor of the Pioneer Heritage Middle School jazz band, The Pioneers of Jazz; and the Frisco High School Jazz Ensemble.

In August 2012, Ms. Roberts will begin work at Tyler Junior College in Tyler, Texas, as the Professor of Woodwinds and Bands. Previously, Ms. Roberts was an adjunct professor at Tarrant County College – Southeast Campus where she taught private woodwind and piano lessons, in addition to music appreciation and jazz appreciation classes. Moreover, she was the Saxophone Instructor for the Michigan All-State Program Saxophone Workshop held at Interlochen, Michigan from 2002-2005 and the Saxophone Coach for the Michigan All-State Program Concert Band also held at Interlochen, Michigan from 2003-2005.

She has studied with Donald Sinta, Donald Walden, Eric Nestler, Jim Riggs, Jean-Marie Londeix, Jean-Francious Guy, Joseph Lulloff, Kelland Thomas, Steve Weist, Paris Rutherford, and John Vana.

Phone: (940) 390-8470


B.M. University of Michigan

M.M. University of North Texas


Ray Chambers – Saxophone

Ray Chambers has been a saxophonist for over 30 years with experience on all saxophones from sopranino to contrabass in all styles from classical to jazz. Currently he plays with the Tyler Big Band, TJC Wind Ensemble, East Texas Jazz Orchestra and is principal saxophone with the Tyler Community Band. Mr. Chambers has been teaching in the Tyler area at all levels from beginner to professional for over 15 years with students consistently in the top of their sections at most local schools. For the last several years he has worked for Tyler ISD as a Fine Arts Tutor assisting middle and high school bands by offering specialized instruction on saxophone, low brass, and double reeds. Mr. Chambers has been fortunate enough to support the Pride of Robert E. Lee marching band as instructor of saxophone for the past several summers. His students have earned numerous superior ratings for solos and ensembles.


Over the years, Ray has studied with various teachers including Michael Kellogg and Dr. Kevin McNerney at Tyler Junior College, Mountain View College, and the University of Texas at Arlington and Tyler. He has been principal saxophone in several community bands, the Tyler Junior College Wind Ensemble, and the Tyler Community Band as well as lead alto in the TJC jazz ensembles, and performing on tenor and bari with the UTA jazz bands and Mav Brass pit band. Ray has performed professionally in the Tyler and D/FW areas regularly over the last 25 years. In addition, Ray was a member of the Texas Army National Guard 49th Armored Division Band. Ray currently lives in Tyler with his wife Christy. He has two daughters (Abigail 11, and Meredith Claire 9) currently attending Clarkston Elementary school.

Phone: (903) 330-5823



Eli Love – Saxophone

Eli Love received a Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music. He has traveled extensively, worldwide, playing and teaching music. He’s played professionally on the road, for theater, concerts, TV, recordings, clubs, and private occasions all of his life. He has given private lessons since age 13 and has also taught in public and private schools for 20 years. He now resides in Flint, TX with his family and enjoys giving private lessons as well as tutoring music in various Tyler district schools. You can also see him perform locally with “George Faber and Friends.”

Phone: (903) 617-8210


B.M.E. University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music


Katie McBain- Horn 

Bio coming soon!


BA in Music, University of Houston — 1998

MM in Horn Performance, Eastman School of Music — 2000

DMA in Horn Performance, Eastman School of Music — 2008

Full-time position at EIU teaching Horn and other music courses  – 2007-2015


Lloyd Roesch – Horn

Lloyd Roesch taught instrumental music in Texas and Louisiana schools for more than twenty years. His band and orchestra students, as well as private students, receive highest honors in local thru state competitions. His teaching experience covers elementary through university levels.

Mr Roesch earned Bachelor and Master degrees in Music Education from Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, with additional studies at Loyola University in New Orleans, and Syracuse University while attending the Chatauqua Institute, Chatauqua, NY.  His professional performance experience has been with the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra, 24 seasons, Baton Rouge Opera and Ballet companies, the New Orleans Summer Pops and New Orleans Opera Orchestra, as well as the Robert Joffery and the Bolshoi Ballet companies.

Phone: (903) 520-5953


B.M.E. Louisiana State University

M.M. Louisiana State University


Micah Bell – Trumpet

Micah Bell received a Bachelor of Music Education degree from TCU in 2007 and a Masters in Trumpet Performance in 2009. As an educator, Mr. Bell has been a very active clinician in the DFW metroplex teaching jazz and trumpet masterclasses as well as private lessons since 2004. He has also been the director of the Dallas Area Youth Jazz Orchestra, the trumpet professor at Collin College, and is a regular faculty member of the Collin College Texas All-Star Jazz Camp. He is currently directing the jazz ensembles at the University of Texas at Tyler.

Mr. Bell is a regularly performing professional musician all over the DFW metroplex and East Texas in many different types of groups spanning various styles of music. Mr. Bell has also been a featured guest artist with many middle school, high school, and college bands at concerts and festivals all over the country. Recently, while working on a Masters degree in Jazz Trumpet Performance at UNT, Mr. Bell was a member of the University of North Texas One O’ Clock Lab Band. As a composer/arranger, Micah Bell is very busy as well and he is currently an active performer and educator in the DFW and East Texas areas



B.M.E. Texas Christian University

M.M. Texas Christian University


Jeremy McBain – Trumpet

Jeremy McBain joined the University of Texas at Tyler as Assistant Professor of Music in 2015. He currently teaches applied trumpet and horn, brass methods, chamber music, Arranging for Ensembles, and Music Fundamentals.  Prior to his appointment at UT Tyler, he taught at Eastern Illinois University, Millikin University, Saint Mary’s College, and San Jacinto Central College.

McBain is an active freelance trumpeter, performing as a frequent soloist with the Baroque Artists of Champaign and as principal trumpet of the Danville Symphony.  He has also performed with the Bach Society of Houston, Peoria Symphony, Champaign-Urbana Symphony, Michigan Chamber Brass, and the State Symphony Orchestra of Mexico.  McBain has had the pleasure of collaborating with Doc Severinsen, Byron Stripling, John Clayton, The Contours, and the late Michael Brecker.

McBain was granted the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Illinois in 2012.  His doctoral thesis was entitled: “The Role of the Cornet à Pistons in the Early Symphonic Works of Hector Berlioz.” In the summer of 2013, he built a natural trumpet in a week-long workshop hosted by Richard Seraphinof in Bloomington, Indiana.  There he apprenticed with Michael Münkwitz, a trumpet maker from Rockstock, Germany and Robert Barclay, author of The Art of the Trumpet-Maker.  The natural trumpet is a replica of the Nürnberg maker Hans Hanlein, dating from 1632.

When outside of the studio and concert hall, he can be found enjoying his new found hobby of trail running.

Phone:  (903) 565-5894



Samuel Riss – Trombone/Euphonium

Samuel Riss holds a Master of Music degree from Temple University in Trombone Performance and a Bachelor of Music degree from SUNY Potsdam where he majored in Music Education and Trombone Performance and minored in Jazz Studies.  While at Temple University, Mr. Riss studied individually with Mr. Matthew Vaughn, Associate Principal of The Philadelphia Orchestra, and worked closely with other members of the orchestra such as bass trombonist, Blair Bollinger.

At Temple University Mr. Riss was the section leader of the wind symphony and the principal (on rotation) of the symphony orchestra.  In addition to his leadership roles in the large ensembles, Mr. Riss also performed in numerous chamber music ensembles such as the Temple University Trombone Quartet, The New School Brass Quintet, and the Temple University Tuba-Euphonium Ensemble.  During his final year of study, Mr. Riss was hired to supplement the trombone section of the Curtis Symphony Orchestra when they performed Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 7 under the baton of Yannick Nézet-Séguin.

While in Philadelphia, Mr. Riss taught local inner-city children through the Community Music Scholars Program and his students received various honors; one student won the All-City Concerto Competition and had his solo debut at the Kimmel Center.  Mr. Riss is new to Tyler and is excited to make new memories and accomplish new things with his students.

Phone:  (903) 764-0637


B.M. SUNY Potsdam

M.M. Temple University


Alan Swartz – Trombone/Euphonium/Tuba

Alan Swartz first taught trombone, euphonium, and tuba in the Tyler area in 1983. He has taught Robert E. Lee students since Richard Highfill was band director.

He has a wide range of musical interests. He holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baylor University, cum laude, with a concentration in trombone; his teachers there included Andrew M. Russell, well-respected throughout Texas, and Chris Matten, a longtime member of the U.S. Air Force Band. Mr. Swartz also holds a Master of Arts from The University of Texas at Tyler with a concentration in music history, where he was privileged to study with the late Janet D. Wheeler. He is also ABD in his Ph.D. studies in music theory at the University of North Texas.

Mr. Swartz holds a Texas public school all-level music teaching certificate, but chose to pursue performance as well as college and university teaching. He performed with the East Texas Symphony from 1986-1991, and has taught at Tyler Junior College. He taught low brass, brass methods, music theory, aural skills, analysis, counterpoint, music literature, and orchestration at UT Tyler for fourteen years, and taught as a teaching fellow at UNT during his doctoral residency.

Mr. Swartz has performed in many bands, sung in many choirs, conducted ensembles, coached instrumentalists and pianists, and offered clinics and master classes. He regularly works to further his keyboard technique, being a particularly avid amateur organist who enjoys tackling the major classical repertoire for pipe organ. He also enjoys the technological challenge of restoring the two “rescue” pipe organs he owns.

Mr. Swartz has developed a flexible and analytical approach to brass technique that adapts to each individual student. Drawing from his own studies, the input of many professionals in the field, intense analysis of his own technique, detailed study of the literature, an uncommon understanding of mechanics, and three decades of experience, he can offer immediately efficient and insightful guidance. In the musical realm, his wide experience brings well-grounded musical order, meaning, and expressiveness to the student, even in the most difficult repertoire.



B.M.E. Baylor University

M.A. University of Texas Tyler


Chris McWilliams – Percussion

Chris McWilliams grew up in Philadelphia, PA, moved to Orlando, FL in 2004, and graduated with a Bachelor’s of Music Education Degree from the University of Central Florida. He is currently completing his Doctoral Degree in Percussion Performance as a Graduate Teaching Fellow at the University of North Texas, where he also received his Master’s Degree in 2011. Chris served as principle percussionist with the UNT Wind Symphony for three years, performed for two years as a student musician in Walt Disney World, and has won the UCF Performance Excellence Competition. He has also performed with Dame Evelyn Glennie as a member of the 2007 International Youth Wind Orchestra in Killarney, Ireland, and as a member of the Magic of Orlando Drum and Bugle Corps in 2005. Chris has been an active performer, educator, and adjudicator in both the Orlando and Dallas/Fort Worth areas. He is currently a member of the touring performance group, the Dallas Brass, the Percussion Co-Caption Head for The Troopers Drum and Bugle Corps, and an Adjunct Professor of Percussion at the University of Texas at Tyler. Chris is also an endorsing artist for Innovative Percussion sticks and mallets.

Phone:  (215) 208-3254



Joseph Snyder – Percussion

Bio coming soon!

Phone: (903) 571-2293