Here It Is
Dr. Chris Oberholtzer, Director of Jazz Studies at the University of Southern Maine, completed his Doctor of Arts degree at the University of Northern Colorado. Chris earned his Master of Music degree from Indiana University, and his Bachelor of Arts in Music Education from the University of Southern Maine. As professor and director of jazz studies at USM, Chris leads a thriving program that is recognized as being one of the leading college jazz programs in New England. In addition to his USM teaching responsibilities, Chris also enjoys actively serving throughout the country as guest artist and director / clinician for numerous high school jazz ensembles and combos, including All-State and Honors Festivals in Colorado, Florida, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont. Other major appearances include festivals such as the (Newport) JVC Jazz Festival, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, and festivals at the University of Northern Colorado, Brevard College (North Carolina) and Utah State University. Chris maintains a busy schedule as a professional freelance trombonist. He has performed, toured and recorded throughout the country and abroad with many groups in varying classical, jazz and commercial genres. His playing experience includes touring with the Artie Shaw Orchestra, the Guy Lombardo Orchestra, Ringling Brothers Circus, Toni Tenille and Holland America cruise lines. Other performing credits include working with artists such as Tony Bennett, Claudio Roditi, Wayne Bergeron, the New York Voices, Conrad Herwig, Brian Lynch, Donald Harrison, Byron Stripling, Phil Wilson, Wycliff Gordon, Ronie Cuber, Frank Wess, Bob Mintzer, Harry Allen, Herb Pomeroy, Richie Cole, Dick Johnson, the Dorsey Brothers Orchestra, the Benny Goodman Orchestra, Aaron Neville, Roberta Flack and the Temptations. Serving as Musical Director of the Portland Jazz Orchestra, Chris is quite busy with the details of leading a regionally active big band. The Portland Jazz Orchestra is a contemporary big band staffed by jazz professionals, many of whom are also music educators, from the northern New England area. Playing music from the libraries of the Count Basie Orchestra, the Duke Ellington Orchestra and the Woody Herman Orchestra, the PJO also enjoys performing more contemporary big band literature from prominent writers such as Gordon Goodwin, Ton Kubis and Maria Schneider. In addition, the PJO focuses on performing original compositions and arrangements written by it's own band members. Many of these compositions are published and are highly regarded on a national level. As a clinician for the United Musical Instrument/Selmer Corporation, Chris performs on Conn and Bach trombones.