Sparky Koerner

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About Sparky Koerner

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Sparky Koerner, professor of music, has been director of Jazz and Instrumental Studies at College of the Mainland located in Texas City, TX for 26 years. Mr. Koerner was recognized as College of the Mainland’s Piper Professor Nominee in 2001 and named Outstanding Teacher for 2001 at COM. He is currently Chairman for the Fine Arts Department at COM. He just completed two years as Chairman of the College Senate. He served as Faculty Council President for 3 years. His jazz ensembles and combos have won 1st place honors at various jazz festivals through out the state of Texas. The College of the Mainland Jazz Ensemble served as backup to Doc Severinsen and Diane Schurr at the Galveston Island Jazz Festival. Other guest artist who have performed with his groups include: Marvin Stamm, Bobby Watson, Rich Matteson, Kim Richmond, Clay Jenkins, Bruce Foreman, Mike Steinel and Tony Campise, to name a few. The Jazz Ensemble recently performed at the Jazz Educators Network Conference in St. Louis in May, 2010
Sparky is the President-Elect of the Texas Jazz Educators Association and the current Texas Music Educators Association High School All State Jazz Ensemble Audition Chairman. He received the 2003 IAJE Education Department Outstanding Service Award for the work he has done with the IAJE Community College All Star Jazz Ensemble. He is a Past-President for the International Association of Jazz Educators Texas Unit. At the 2000 International Association of Jazz Educators Conference in New Orleans, LA he was part of a panel of jazz educators that discussed "Grading Jazz Improvisation: On What Basis?" He presented a panel discussion on “The State of Community College Jazz Programs” at the 1999 IAJE Conference in Anaheim CA. and at the 1999 Texas Community College Teachers Conference in Houston, TX. Mr. Koerner served as the Music Coordinator for the Texas Teachers Community College Association for the year 99-00. During the 1996 IAJE Conference in Atlanta, GA. he directed the IAJE All Star Community College Jazz Ensemble. Sparky has served as organizer for the Texas Community College All State Jazz Ensemble, as well as organizer of the Gulf Coast Intercollegiate Conference Jazz Festival. He has served on the IAJE Resource Team for Community Colleges the past 9 years. Sparky served as the Executive Director of the Galveston Island Jazz Festival from 1991-1994. He is a member of the American Federation of Musicians Local 74.
Sparky is a trumpeter and leader of the “Jazz Express” www.sparkysjazzexpress.com performing in the Galveston/Houston Texas area. He is also a member of the group “Jazz Sunday” which performs at various churches in the area. When not performing or directing jazz you can find him in the principal trumpet chair of the Galveston Symphony Orchestra and in the pit orchestra during the summers at the Galveston Island Outdoor Musicals or College of the Mainland’s Biggest Li’l Theatre in Texas.
Mr. Koerner received his degrees from Louisiana State University (B.M.) and the University of North Texas (M.M.E.). While at UNT he received the 1:00 O’Clock award for his contributions to the Lab Band program. He was also named in Who’s Who Among Students at the University of North Texas, and Who’s Who Among Students in American Colleges and Universities. His trumpet teachers have included George Foss, Leonard Candelaria, John Haynie and Don Jacoby. Sparky was recently named in Who’s Who Among American Teacher.

Sparky Koerner joined the JazzTimes community on Jun 03, 2010