Director of Athletic Bands
Mr. Eric Bradshaw joined the Valdosta State University faculty in the Fall of 2002. He currently serves as the Director of Athletic Bands and Assistant Professor of Music. Along with his teaching responsibilities and directing the Blazin' Brigade Marching Band, Mr. Bradshaw performs as the principal tubist with the Valdosta and Albany Symphony Orchestras, Savannah Philharmonic, VSU Faculty Brass Quintet, and directs the basketball pep band and concert band. Mr. Bradshaw received his Bachelor of Science in music education and Master of Music in tuba performance from the University of Alabama. Mr. Bradshaw's principal conducting instructors have included: Dr. Gerald Welker, Dr. Kenneth Ozzello, and Prof. Don Wilcox. He has studied tuba with Prof. Michael Dunn, Mr. James Jenkins, and Prof. Richard Powell.
Eric's professional affiliations include the College Band Directors National Association, College Music Society, Music Educators National Conference, Georgia Music Educators Association, and International Tuba Euphonium Association. Eric is also a member of Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honor Society, honorary member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, and is currently the faculty advisor for the VSU chapter of Tau Beta Sigma.
Prior to moving to Valdosta, Mr. Bradshaw spent 1997-2001 teaching in the public school system in Carroll County, GA and working as an adjunct professor at the University of West Georgia.
Eric lives with his wife, Jeanne-Hope, and their twin sons, Andrew and Ryan. The Bradshaw's are also an active foster family for the Valdosta area.
Email Mr. Bradshaw!
Mr. Curtis Thornton graduated from Valdosta State University with a Bachelor's in Music Performance. During his undergraduate degree, Curtis performed with numerous ensembles including the VSU Wind Ensemble, VSU Blazin' Brigade, Valdosta Symphony Orchestra, Presidential Brass Quintet, and Albany Symphony Orchestra. He also had the privilege of performing with the VSU Tuba Euphonium Ensemble at 2013 Southeast Regional Tuba Euphonium Conference and the 2014 International Tuba Euphonium Conference. Curtis has served as a clinician at several schools from the middle Georgia region to North Florida including Howard High School, Lanier County High School, and Clinch County High School. Curtis is currently pursuing a Master of Music Degree in Tuba Performance under the tutelage of Mr. Daniel Rowland. His previous teachers include Mr. Eric Bradshaw, and Mrs. Betsy Jones.
Mr. Lee Cook graduated from Limestone College in Gaffney, SC with a Bachelors Degree in Music. While studying music at Limestone College, Mr. Cook played trombone in a diversity of ensembles from jazz, chamber and concert styles. After graduating Limestone College, Lee taught in FL and AZ. He has worked with marching bands as a teacher and low brass clinician for corps-style marching. Mr. Cook has lead marching bands to state marching band competition in FL and AZ. In addition to Mr. Cook’s education career he has performed with various artists and ensembles. In 1992, Lee performed with Ed Shaughnessy at a Percussive Arts Society clinic in Brevard, NC. While teaching in the Florida Keys, he was a member of the Paradise Big Band; and In AZ, he played bass trombone with the Phoenix Community Orchestra and trombone with the Old Arizona Brass Band, a replica band of the 4th Calvary Regimental Band at Ft. Lowell. Lee’s professional affiliations include International Trombone Association, Arizona Music Educators Association, and National Association for Music Education (formerly MENC). Lee is also a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.
Coordinator of Color Guard
Ms. Kelly Ross is a native of Southern California and comes to Valdosta with a great amount of both dance and color guard experience. She has been a dancer since childhood and has been involved in the color guard activity for over 14 years. Kelly was a member of the Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps from 2001-2004 and a cast member with Fantasia Winter Guard from 2001-2004. During her performance career, Kelly won 3 national championships, 3 silver medals, and 2 bronze medals. In addition, she was a color guard member of the Riverside Community College Marching Tigers from 2000-2002.
As a teacher, Kelly has taught many successful, nationally competing color guards in Southern California, New York, Utah, Florida and Georgia. In 2005, she was a color guard instructor for Teal Sound Drum and Bugle Corps and is currently the color guard instructor for Lowndes High School.
Kelly is a recent graduate from Valdosta State University with a bachelor's degree in Psychology. In addition, Kelly is a member of three honor societies; Phi Beta Kappa, Psi Chi, and Pi Gamma Mu. She is also currently a graduate student at Valdosta State University, working on her Master of Education (ME.d.) degree in School Counseling.
Coordinator of Blazette Dance Line
Coordinator of Marching Percussion
Mr. Aaron Savage is a product of the Tift County School System. He graduated from Tift County High School in 2002. He is the son of Rickey & Cathy Savage. Aaron was a member of the Southwind Drum & Bugle Corps for 3 years and a member of the Spirit Drum and Bugle Corps for 2 years. He attended Jacksonville State University and Abraham Baldwin College and is now finishing up his education at Valdosta State University. He has studied percussion with Clint Gillespie, Nick Angelis, Carl Eppler, Clif Walker, Jeff Ausdemore, Ryan Sirna and most recently Paul Campiglia. He is a current member of the Percussive Society and an educational consultant for the Vic Firth Cooperation. From 2006-2011, Aaron served as percussion caption head & arranger for the Tift County High School “Blue Devil” Brigade drum line. He is currently the Coordinator of Percussion Studies with the Colquitt County Schools.
Aaron lives in Moultrie with his wife Liz and their son, Jaxon Rylie.