2022 SUPAF Adjudicators

Rhonda Rhodes, Band

Faculty, Dixie State University, Woodwinds and Music Education. Active music adjudicator and honor band clinician in Utah. Rhonda plays saxophone, oboe, English horn, clarinet, and flute. Former instrumental music teacher, WCSD, 25 years, concurrently teaching Woodwind courses and ensembles at DSU as an adjunct and part-time instructor. Taught one year at USU-Eastern in Price, directing the band and choir programs.  She played woodwinds at Tuacahn from 1996 to 2020 and has played oboe in the Southwest Symphony Orchestra since 1989. She performs on saxophone for the USU Summer Alumni Concert Band and in the Rebel Jazz Band. BA in Music Education, USU.

Bryant Smith, Band

Associate Professor and Director of Bands, DSU. Former Director of Bands at Columbia Basin College, Pasco, WA; adjunct positions at BYU and UVSC; band director at Spanish Fork HS (2009 “Teacher of the Year” award). Board member, UMEA and St George Jazz. Active clinician, adjudicator, and guest conductor. Music history topics researcher. Doctor of Arts degree from U of N Colorado, bachelors and masters, UofU and BYU. Enjoys adventures with his wife, Heather, and their four children.

Grant Farmer, Choir

Lifelong musician specializing in Vocology and Music Education, teaching at both the HS and college levels as well as conducting community, church, and opera
choruses. Currently Director of Choral Activities at The College of Idaho. Doctoral Candidate in Choral Conducting at the Jacobs School of Music, Indiana University. Masters of Music in Choral Conducting, Westminster Choir College,
undergraduate degree in Vocal Music Education, Middle Tennessee State University.

Roger Hale, Choir

Director of Choral Studies, DSU; guest conductor/clinician; founder and creator of solfasinger.com, a website that helps singers learn Solfege. BME and MM in Choral Conducting, UofU; PhD in Choral Music Education, Florida State University. He lives in the St. George area with his wife and their five children.

Kayson Brown, Orchestra

Founder of Lyceum Music Festival and director of Lyceum Orchestras Program at American Heritage School, the largest youth orchestra program in Utah. Certified Suzuki Cello instructor, 20 years. Has
soloed with many symphony orchestras and conducted 25 symphony orchestras. Recognized by Best of State Utah and American String Teachers Association as one of the leading music educators in
the nation. Bachelor’s in Cello Performance, UofU; Master’s in Orchestral Conducting, BYU, where he served on the conducting and cello faculty. Married to Danielle,

Lucas Darger, Orchestra

Maestro, Southwest Symphony. Began conducting at age 16 (All-City Children’s Orchestra in SLC). Has conducted orchestras across the nation. An active violinist, has performed with orchestras
throughout the country and toured internationally. Experienced orchestra clinician and adjudicator.  Bachelor’s in violin performance, UofU; Master’s in orchestral conducting, Univ of Iowa.  Fellowship, Pierre Monteux School for Conductors. Has a brown belt in Judo, is an avid Utes fan, and enjoys hiking, motorcycling and skiing with his family.

Christie Sowby, Piano

Active performer and accompanist, teaches online and in-person private lessons, pedagogy, masterclasses, and summer camps. Enjoys lecturing and performing for music conferences and webinars.  Judges competitions, festivals, and Utah’s Sterling Scholar program. Has taught piano courses and lessons at BYU, Rivers Conservatory, the greater Boston area, and throughout the world via online lessons. Recipient of UMTA Student Teacher of the year, Vivian Nelson Award, and the MTNA National Studio Teacher Fellowship. Attended, BYU, Harvard, the New England Conservatory, and UofU. She loves to spend time with husband, Robert, and daughter, Evelyn.

Regina Roper, Piano

One of the earliest Suzuki piano instructors in the San Francisco Bay Area, 36 years teaching, evaluating, accompanying, performing, and presenting workshops before semi-retiring to Southern Utah in 2015.  Accompanist at San Jose State (studio lessons, university choirs, and opera) and community theater. BA degree in Piano Performance and Music Theory, graduate studies.

Ashley Braithwaite, Strings

Private studio and secondary orchestra teacher (seven MS orchestras). Current festival manager for UMEA’s State Jr. High Orchestra. Alpine School District “Teacher of the Year” and “Cluster Teacher of the Year” awards, as well as being chosen as Utah’s featured “Director who Makes a Difference” in 2019 SBO Magazine.  Ashley has performed throughout Europe and especially enjoys playing chamber music. Bachelor of Music in Viola Performance, UofU; Master’s in Secondary Education, USU. She loves action sports such as Supercross, and can be found outside on her dirt bike wherever the sun is shining.

Edwin J. Candland, Strings

Retired from 27 years teaching in WCSD, where he taught String Orchestra (PVHS, PVMS, FRIS), band, and choral. His ensembles have earned superior ratings on region and state levels and toured
to various destinations around the US. He studied bow making and repair at the Univ of NH. An experienced bow technician, he
owns Ed Candland Bow Rehair.  Conducting/staff appointments include: American Music Ambassadors Honor Band, John Philip Sousa NHS Honor Band,
Alaska All-State Band, Zion Youth Symphony Orchestra. Bachelor of Music Education, UofU; Master of Music Education, Boston Univ.

Alexandra Bradshaw-Yerby, Dance

Canadian-American dance artist and Asst Professor of Dance, SUU.  Formerly danced with Ririe-Woodbury Dance Co., touring annually throughout the US and
abroad. Performed as a freelance dance artist in San Francisco, NYC, and Israel. Taught at the Ririe-Woodbury Dance Foundation; the UofU; Univ of Wyoming; Univ of Washington; The Royal Ballet
School/Tumbuka Dance Company
in Harare, Zimbabwe; Univ of Mississippi; and Univ of Georgia.  Various choreographic projects.  MFA in Dance, Univ of Washington.

Nick Cendese, Dance

Utah native who grew a beard in 2012 and his life has never been the same.  Owner and director of South Valley Creative Dance. Artistic Associate and Development Director, Repertory Dance Theatre. Ran RawMoves, his own independent dance company, for eight years and taught at Miss Margene’s Creative Classroom for 14 years.  Performed professionally with RDT for 11 years. Before the birth of bearded Nick, he started dancing in 6th Grade with Children’s Dance Theatre. BFA in modern dance, UofU. He is continually amazed and in awe of the dancers and students he gets to work with and is often just tired enough to get misty eyed and very emotional when watching them dance their hearts out – which reminds him how lucky and fortunate he really is.

Lori Higbee, Dance

Contemporary company director at Elevate Dance Academy in Lehi, has been teaching dance for over 24 years. She has danced and choreographed for several dance companies and has taught and choreographed for dozens of HS dance companies in Utah. Director/owner of humanitarian-based touring company Reach Dance Company. She also is a Master Lead Teacher for Minding Motion for Graceful Aging for the elderly and those with dementia and Alzheimer’s. She danced in the modern dance program at USU. BA in Dance Pedagogy, U of Idaho with certification in elementary Labanotation. She loves to be outside mountain biking, hiking, Paddleboarding, snowboarding, and camping with her family.  

Andrew Young, Dance

HS Science teacher, also directing many HS Ballroom companies. Former dancer with UVU Touring company representing the US at multiple international competitions and festivals. Director and Choreographer for Mountain View, Westland, and Timpanogos High Schools. National finalist in Amateur Smooth, Theater Arts, and WCS. When he moved to St. George, he jumped back onto the Musical Theater stage. Favorite roles played: – Sky Masterson “Guys and Dolls” – Gaston “Beauty and the Beast”- Billy Flynn “Chicago”- Sid Sorokin “Pajama Game” and – Harold “Full Monty.” BS in Biology Education.


Kaye Bramwell Bair, Drama

Former WCSD substitute teacher
and public school educator, Drama, Communication, Debate, and English. Former Adjunct professor, SUU, teacher education courses. St. George Musical Theater Director and Asst Director, 1995-2001. DSC Community Education, Summer Theater Camps, Circa
2008-2011. Tuacahn Hafen Theater, Asst Director, “See How They Run,” 2000. St George Dickens Festival, Director, Scrooge and Oliver. Street
performer and greeter, 20 years. Sang with John Houston’s Gospel Choir and one season with Southern Utah Heritage Choir. BA in Speech and Drama Education and MA in Speech Communication, BYU.


(435) 256-5550   supaffestival@gmail.com