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CSU Bands


  • Dr. Marshall Forrester, Director of Bands
  • Dr. Nicholas V. Holland, III, Associate Director of Bands/Director of Athletic Bands
  • Mr. Mark Sterbank, Director of Jazz Studies, Saxophone Professor
  • Mrs. Regina Helcher-Yost, adjunct Flute Professor
  • Mr. Charles Messersmith, adjunct Clarinet Professor
  • Mrs. Susan Sievert Messersmith, adjunct Trumpet Professor
  • Mr. Brandon Nichols, adjunct Horn Professor
  • Dr. Gretchen Bowles, adjunct Low Brass Professor
  • Dr. Michael Haldeman, adjunct Percussion Professor
  • Mr. Christopher Teves, adjunct Guitar Professor

Dr. Marshall Forrester, Director of Bands

Dr. Marshall Forrester is Associate Professor of Music and Director of Bands, He conducts the Wind Ensemble, as well as teaching conducting and other courses in music education. Forrester received the Master of Music degree, with a concentration in conducting, from the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester, where he studied wind ensemble history and literature with Donald Hunsberger, director emeritus of the renowned Eastman Wind Ensemble. He holds the Doctor of Philosophy degree in Music Education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Forrester was previously the Director of Bands at Carson-Newman College, where he conducted the Wind Ensemble and Symphonic Band, as well as teaching conducting and band and wind ensemble literature. He was the recipient of the Carson-Newman College Teaching Excellence and Leadership Award. While in East Tennessee, Forrester was the Music Director and Conductor of the Knoxville Wind Symphony. He was twice elected as College Representative on the Board of the East Tennessee School Band and Orchestra Association. He has presented wind music research internationally, as well as lectured and guest conducted for the Southern Division of the College Band Directors National Association. He has several articles published in The Instrumentalist magazine. Forrester lives in Mount Pleasant with his wife Lisa, sons Paul and Andrew, and daughter Katie.

Dr. Nicholas V. Holland, III, Associate Director of Bands/Director of Athletic Bands

Dr. Nicholas V. Holland, III is Associate Director of Bands and Director of Athletic Bands and is currently serving as Chamber Ensemble Coordinator. He holds BM and MM degrees in music education from East Carolina University and the PhD in music education from the University of North Carolina Greensboro. Previously, he was Associate Director of Bands/Coordinator of Instrumental Music Education at The University of Memphis, Director of Bands at Valdosta State University in Valdosta, Ga., and Director of Bands/Instructor of Percussion at Eastern New Mexico University in Portales, N.M. He maintains membership in CBDNA, MENC, SCMEA, TMEA (Texas), Phi Mu Alpha, Kappa Kappa Psi, Tau Beta Sigma, and Sigma Alpha Iota as a Friend of the Arts. His research on noise exposure in collegiate bands has been published in UPDATE: Applications for Research in Music Education, and his articles on percussion pedagogy and instrumental music education have been published in Percussive Notes, and Keynotes Magazine. In 2011, Holland presented his research on noise exposure at the Georgia Music Educators Association annual conference, and presented a paper in percussion pedagogy at the Texas Music Educators Association annual convention. He is an active percussionist, and performs frequently with orchestras, community bands and praise bands. Holland performed with the Bridgemen and Sky Ryders Drum and Bugle Corps and was Front Ensemble instructor and assistant arranger for the Sky Ryders in 1999. He is an active adjudicator and clinician of marching and concert ensembles throughout the country. Originally from Chapel Hill, N.C., he and his wife Karen live in Mount Pleasant with their two children, Nicholas and Caroline, and their two Boston Terriers, Otis and Lexi.

Mr. Mark Sterbank, Director of Jazz Studies, Saxophone Professor

Mr. Mark Sterbank began playing saxophone at age 9 and was soon ahead of his peers playing with older groups in school and playing his first professional gig at 16. In high school, he was awarded the Louis Armstrong Award and earned a scholarship to the Berklee College of Music along with acceptance at both the New England Conservatory and the Eastman School of Music. He attended the Eastman School of Music where he earned the prestigious Performers Certificate in addition to graduating with distinction. He was awarded a National Endowment of the Arts Jazz Study Grant to study with famed jazz educator Ellis Marsalis. This took him to New Orleans where he later earned his master's degree in performance at the University of New Orleans and met the love of his life, Leah. After a short stint on the road with the Harry Connick, Jr. Orchestra, Sterbank finished his degree and moved to New York City where he teamed up with saxophonist and friend Todd Williams at Times Square Church. There he wrote and arranged for the band and choir and played saxophone in weekly church services that featured a wide variety of musical styles from jazz to gospel to classical to contemporary.  He married Leah and moved to Charleston, to be closer to family, and he began teaching at Charleston Southern University. He soon met and began playing with local jazz drummer Quentin Baxter, which also led to performances with Tommy Gill, Charlton Singleton, Kevin Hamilton, Herman Burney, Jr., Fred Wesley and many others. Sterbank currently resides in Charleston and plays with the Quentin Baxter Ensemble, the Charlton Singleton Quintet and the Charleston Jazz Orchestra. He leads his own jazz group, Hymns & Spirituals, playing a yearly concert at CSU. He also co-leads another group, Tenor Madness, with saxophonist Robert Lewis. He has performed with the Charleston, Savannah, and Hilton Head Symphonies, the Savannah Jazz Orchestra, the Tommy Gill Ensemble, the Frank Duvall Trio, the OJays, Mary Wilson, Lynard Skynard, and the Darius Rucker Big Band. He has also played numerous shows with Brad and Jennifer Moranz Productions and with the Charleston Stage Company. Some other career highlights have been leading a quartet with drummer Brian Blade at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival and performing with the Temptations and Eartha Kitt.

Mrs. Regina Helcher-Yost, adjunct Flute Professor

Regina Helcher-Yost is currently in her 14th season as Second Flute of the Charleston Symphony Orchestra and 16th season as Assistant Principal Flute/Piccolo of the Colorado Music Festival in Boulder, Colorado. Yost is Adjunct Professor of Flute at CSU, core flutist for Chamber Music Charleston and Owner of "Charleston Flutist, LLC" ( a small business which provides wedding music in the Charleston area). In the summer of 2006, she served as Acting Flutist with the Atlanta Chamber Players on their 30th Anniversary European Tour, performing for enthusiastic audiences in France, Switzerland, and Rome, Italy. In the summer of 2009, Helcher-Yost was Co-Principal Flutist in the International Pacific Music Festival 20th Anniversary Alumni Orchestra in Sapporo, Japan. Previously, she was the Associate Principal Flute/Piccolo of the Honolulu Symphony (1987-95), Second Flute/Piccolo of the Knoxville Symphony (1995-97), and Acting Second Flute of the St. Louis Symphony (1999-2000). In 2000, she soloed with the St. Louis Symphony in Brandenburg #4 in Powell Symphony Hall which received a standing ovation and rave reviews. In that same year, she was also chosen to play in the Minnesota Orchestra on their NYC/European tour, playing in Carnegie Hall and the finest halls in Europe, including the Musikverein and the Philharmonie. Helcher-Yost also was the Flute Instructor both at the Punahou School and Mid Pacific Institute in Honolulu, Hawaii. She lives in Mt. Pleasant with her husband and pug dog Winston. She enjoys running, cooking and hiking high elevation mountains in the summers in Colorado.

Mr. Charles Messersmith, adjunct Clarinet Professor

Charles Messersmith is the Adjunct Clarinet Professor. He is also the Principal Clarinet for the Charleston Symphony Orchestra. Messersmith began playing the clarinet at the age of 8, and attended the Cleveland Institute of Music and received a Bachelor of Music degree (while studying with Franklin Cohen) in 1991. He received his Master of Music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music while studying with David Breeden (San Francisco Symphony). He served as Principal Clarinet for the Augusta Symphony for four years, and in 1998, he was appointed to the Second Clarinet position with the Charleston Symphony. In 2005, he won the Principal Clarinet position. Along with regular performances with the CSO, he performs in Charleston with local, national, and internationally renowned chamber musicians, as well as for Piccolo Spoleto Festival programs in the spring. In the summer, he performs at the Wintergreen Music Festival in the Blue Ridge Mountains. He has been featured as soloist with the Charleston Symphony on numerous occasions, most recently performing the Copland Clarinet Concerto and the Mozart Clarinet Concerto. During the 2011-12 season, he was featured performing the Mozart Clarinet Concerto.

Mrs. Susan Sievert Messersmith, adjunct Trumpet Professor

Susan Sievert Messersmith is the adjunct Trumpet Professor and she teaches trumpet and conducts the Brass Choir and Brass Ensemble. She completed the Bachelor of Music Degree at the Baldwin-Wallace College Conservatory of Music in 1990 (studying with James Darling and Mary Squire) and graduated summa cum laude, 1st in a class of 920 students. She also attended the Eastman School of Music (studying with Barbara Butler) where, in 1992, she earned a Master of Music in Performance and Literature, as well as the Performer's Certificate. She then began postgraduate studies at the Cleveland Institute of Music with Michael Sachs. In 1993, she won national auditions for Second Trumpet positions in both the Tucson Symphony and the Charleston Symphony Orchestra. She has performed with the San Antonio Symphony, the Phoenix Symphony, the Rochester Philharmonic, the Jacksonville Symphony, the Canton (Ohio) Symphony, the Roanoke Symphony, the Wooster (Ohio) Symphony (with which she has also performed twice as soloist), the Savannah Symphony, the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra, and the Hilton Head Orchestra. In the summers she is a member of the Shenandoah Valley Bach Festival, and the Wintergreen Performing Arts Summer Music Festival, both in Virginia. Prior to moving to Charleston, Messersmith performed in the National Orchestral Institute, the National Repertory Orchestra, the New World Symphony, and the Schleswig-Holstein Festival Orchestra, performing concerts in Germany, Italy, Spain, and Denmark. In 2007, she decided to spend more time with family, and resigned from the CSO, though she can still often be seen on the stage playing extra and filling in when needed. She maintains a very busy freelancing and teaching schedule, and recently published Heavenly Descants for Trumpet on 118 Hymn Tunes, which is the most comprehensive trumpet descant book on the market.

Mr. Brandon Nichols, adjunct Horn Professor

Nichols has served as Principal Horn of the Charleston Symphony since 1991, having been a member since 1989. Nichols has frequently appeared as a soloist with the Charleston Symphony, performing such works as Schumann's Concertstuck and Mozart's Symphonie Concertante on the Masterworks series as well as solo works by Haydn, Telemann, Richard Strauss, Fiala, Franz Strauss and Bach on the Chamber Series. During the 1993-94 season he took a one year leave to serve as Principal Horn of the Milwaukee Symphony, where he can be heard performing on several compact disc recordings on the Koss label. In the summer of 1998, Nichols was invited to Toronto to play with the Canadian Brass Quintet. He was one of a select few hornists worldwide being considered for the horn position in the Canadian Brass. In addition to his busy schedule in Charleston, Nichols performs regularly with The Atlanta Symphony as extra horn and as substitute Principal Horn and can be heard on many recordings. Nichols serves as Instructor of Horn at the College of Charleston and Charleston Southern University, as well as teaching many private students. He has been involved with the Spoleto Festival (Charleston and Italy), and has frequently performed as featured soloist with the Piccolo Spoleto Festival. He has performed with musical organizations in many countries in Europe as well as India, Japan, and Korea. He studied at Arizona State University as well as the Mannes College of Music in NYC. He enjoys spending time with his daughters Amanda and Sarah.

Dr. Michael Haldeman, adjunct Percussion Professor

Dr. Michael E. Haldeman is  Adjunct Percussion Studies Professor. Originally from Pennsylvania, Haldeman holds a BA in Percussion Performance from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where he studied with Dr. Gary J. Olmstead, and a MM and DMA in Percussion Performance from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro, under the instruction of Dr. Cort McClaren. Haldeman teaches applied percussion lessons, conducts the CSU percussion ensemble, instructs percussion methods and music appreciation classes, and assists with the CSU marching band and pep-band. In addition to his responsibilities at CSU, he coaches weekly percussion classes, teaches private lessons and conducts both the high school and middle school percussion ensembles at The Charleston County School of the Arts, an arts-based magnet school in Charleston. Haldeman regularly performs with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, drums with the Joe Clarke Trio and Big Band, served as a front ensemble member of the Santa Clara Vanguard Drum & Bugle Corps in 2001, co-instructed of the Glassmen Drum & Bugle Corps front ensemble in 2003 and has performed with the Long Bay Symphony Orchestra. Haldeman also recently presented his research titled Mallet Velocity In Two-Mallet Marimba Performance at the National Conference on Percussion Pedagogy on the campus of Oklahoma University in Norman, Okla.

Mr. Christopher Teves, adjunct Guitar Professor

Classical guitarist Christopher Teves has performed throughout the United States as a recitalist and as a soloist with orchestras. Career highlights include performances at the Dame Myra Hess Series in Chicago, the Guitar Foundation of America International Festival in Charleston, the Society of Composers Inc. National Conference in Iowa City, the Piccolo Spoleto Festival, performances in New York, Washington, D.C., Pittsburgh, Nashville, Cincinnati, Memphis, and appearances with orchestras in Ohio, South Carolina, Virginia and the Czech Republic. His studies include degrees from the University of South Carolina, Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and postgraduate studies at the Eastman School of Music. He has served on the music faculties of the University of South Carolina, Capital University, Otterbein College, and the Eastman School of Music Community Education Division. He is an adjunct at CSU and teaches privately at Clelias Guitar Studio in West Ashley. His discography includes The Water is Wide(2005) with flutist Tacy Edwards, Hauntings(2004) with the Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra, and his solo CD, Guitar America(1999).


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