My first teacher, was August H. Schaeffer, Principal Trumpet with the Cincinatti Symphony and the trumpet instructor at the Cincinatti Conservatory.  He moved to Florida to retire, and my mom found him, completely by accident. He took H.L. Clarke's place with Sousa's band when Clarke retired. I started with him when I was 4 1/2 years old.

He wrote many books and arrangements and was a apecialist in the upper register.  He used to have his trumpet hanging from the ceiling, and he would walk up to it and play from pedal "C" up to double high "C", with no hands, on his Bach #1 mouthpiece. My first mouthpiece was a Bach 2 1/2 C  He had me playing Clarke's "Carnival of Venice" when I was 8 years old, and I had no trouble in playing the high "F" at the end, at that age on that mouthpiece.

When he died he left a letter sending me to Dr. Modeste Alloo, Boston Symphony & New York Philharmonic, who is responsible for whatever I developed into as a player. Dr. Alloo's father was the conductor, for many years of the National Opera Company in Belgium.

Later on, I studied with Gilbert Johnson, Philadelphia Orchestra, and earned my Master's on Applied Trumpet with him. I then studied with Arturo Sandoval, with whom I still a have strong ties.

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