Mr. Caleb Chapman, Artistic Director
Chapman founded the Caleb Chapman Music program in 1999 through which he has already left a permanent mark on the music industry. His vision and accomplishments have marked him as a rising star, both domestically and internationally. Caleb produces and directs over 150 of Utah’s most talented young musicians in nine elite ensembles, including the award-winning Crescent Super Band. These bands can currently be heard on radio stations across the country, including Sirius XM Satellite radio. In addition to performing across the globe, his bands have been recognized time and again as some of the nation’s top entertainers. DownBeat Magazine has recognized these bands with 10 awards over the last 5 years. Caleb received the Best of State Statue Award, marking his program as the top organization in Arts and Entertainment for the state of Utah, beating out every other professional music, arts, and film organization for the honor. They have also garnered 7 Best of State Medals in the process. And his Crescent Super Band has consistently been named the top professional band in Utah in any genre. In addition to fronting the bands, Caleb is an active saxophonist. Most recently, he performed the National Anthem for the NBA at a sold-out match with the Utah Jazz and the Miami Heat, the only saxophonist ever to receive the invitation in Utah. Caleb is a featured clinician and sponsored performer for Yamaha Saxophones, Rico Reeds, JodyJazz Mouthpieces, and Planet Waves Cables.
Mr. Sam Payne, Department Chair
As an educator, Sam Payne has spent 16 years in the classroom and in school administration, and was presented Utah’s Best of State award as a school administrator in 2015. As a performing artist, Mr. Payne has an award-winning catalog of seven albums of original solo material, and four jazz albums of American standards as the leader of the widely performing quartet “Savoy.” He has also shared stages with rock legends Toto and Foreigner, pop stars Air Supply and Marie Osmond, and more. Mr. Payne has entertained as a storyteller, songwriter and jazz musician in concert halls from Bulgaria to Tokyo, and from the Will Rogers Auditorium in Dallas, Texas to the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. He co-directed the “Soundcheck Series,” an artist development program for independent songwriters. He also founded the Southern Utah Songwriters Association, and developed “Musicfusion,” a series of workshops and classes in which elementary school students interact with music professionals to create and perform individual and collaborative works for the stage. As a radio writer and personality, Mr. Payne hosts “The Apple Seed: Tellers and Stories,” a daily radio show on the art of storytelling for BYU Radio. He also conceived and directed the nation’s most listened-to inspirational Internet radio station, YLDSR.com <http://YLDSR.com> , and created and syndicated “The Radio Family Journal,” a popular weekly storytelling radio feature for families. As an educational writer, Mr. Payne has authored educational publications for children, and his work has been adopted as standard curriculum by state boards of education in Florida and Arkansas. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Weber State University, a Master’s degree in Education from Southern Utah University, and serves on the board of the National Storytelling Network.
Mr. Nate Pyfer, Songwriting Teacher
Pyfer is an American record producer and songwriter/composer. Pyfer has collaborated with Kaskade and producer Finn Bjarnson on a number of projects including co-writing the GRAMMY nominated single “Atmosphere” on the eponymous GRAMMY nominated album. Nate Pyfer was a founding member of the bands Code Hero, Night Night, and The Moth & The Flame. He also toured as a member of Joshua James’ band during the late 2000s. Remixes and collaborations released by Pyfer and his associates are most often under the pseudonym “Wild Children”. Notable Wild Children releases include “Catalyst” – Kaskade & Wild Children (Pyfer also sings on the track), “Crystallize Mashup (Wild Children Remix)” – Lindsey Sterling, and “Atmosphere (Wild Children x Neon Trees remix)” – Kaskade
Ms. Kelly Kuhnen, Vocal Technique Teacher
Kelly Kuhnen is an MDT graduate from BYU. She has performed all over the country in performing groups and touring companies. Kelly was a member of the Deseret Book group Providence. She has starred in many Michael McLean productions, including The Ark (original cast), Celebrating The Light (touring company) and played Connie Lou for 8 years in The Forgotten Carols. She is an accomplished studio singer, with credits on several projects. She has been a private voice teacher for 25 years. Kelly teaches and vocal directs several of the conservatory performing companies at Utah Conservatory of Performing Arts in American Fork, Utah. This is her 4th year at PHS. She lives in the Salt Lake area with her 4 great kids!
Mr. Brandon Kitterman, Bass Teacher
Kitterman has been a professional bassist, guitarist, sound designer, recording artist, engineer, music educator, and overall music geek for over fifteen years. He plays guitar, bass guitar, and synths for Provo-based band Fictionist. A former Atlantic Records recording artist, he continues to tour the country with Fictionist, performing with artists such as Robert DeLong, Vampire Weekend, Neon Trees, COIN, Mates of State, Big Data, Walk The Moon, Imagine Dragons, Young The Giant, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Shiny Toy Guns, and more. Brandon received a Bachelor of Music in Classical Guitar Performance from the University of Utah, studying with notable Utah classical guitarist Todd Woodbury. There he performed with multiple ensembles and received multiple scholarships for performance and academic excellence. He has been a private music instructor for over 15 years, and is currently the Bass Instructor at Pioneer High School for the Performing Arts.
Mr. Kurt Reeder, Keyboard Teacher
Reeder has followed his love for jazz since age 12 when he began studying jazz exclusively. After a bachelors degree earned at Brigham Young University-Idaho, and Brigham Young University in Jazz Studies on piano, he went on to earn a Masters Degree in Jazz Performance from California State University Fullerton where he had a chance to study and work with amazing musicians in the Southern California Scene, as well as direct the University’s salsa band. In the meantime he has had four children with his beautiful wife Candice. Kurt is currently teaching the keyboard masterclass at Pioneer High School for the Performing Arts, under the direction of Caleb Chapman, as well as teaching privately and working as professor of Jazz Piano at Utah Valley University.