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Rick Rodriguez is a music educator and freelance trombonist in Atlanta, Georgia. He is currently in his 19th year of teaching music (6th year at Summerour). He holds a Master’s Degree in Jazz Studies from Georgia State University (2009) and also attended the University of Texas at Austin where he earned a Bachelors Degree in Music Education (1992). Rick is currently serving as Director of Bands at Summerour Middle School in the Gwinnett County Public School system. Since arriving at Summerour in 2013, Mr. Rodriguez has increased enrollment in the band program to include over 260 students in four bands. The Summerour Symphonic Band has consistently earned Superior ratings at the Georgia Music Educators Association, Large Group Performance Evaluation. Mr. Rodriguez is also on the teaching staff of the Rialto Jazz for Kids program, which is based at Georgia State University in the Rialto Theater Center for the Arts. Previously, Rick served as Director of Bands at Morningside, Mary Lin & Springdale Park Elementary schools and at Inman Middle School in the Atlanta Public Schools. He also served as a band director in the Austin (Texas) Independent School District.
In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Rick maintains an active performance schedule. He frequently performs with various ensembles, including the Joe Gransden Big Band, Moments Notice Big Band, Orquesta MaCuba, Atlanta Latin Jazz Orchestra and several variety bands in the metro area. Rick has performed with Slide Hampton, Jimmy Heath, Jon Faddis, Phillip Mossman, Larry Harlow, Tony Vega, Paquito Guzman, Luisito Rosario, Kate Earl, 10,000 Maniacs, Joel Osteen, Patrick Davis and Francine Reed.
Rick resides in Peachtree Corners, GA with his wife Kelly. They have two children, Nick (23), Izzy (16) and a dog named Grits.
Lawrence Williams is the Assistant Band Director and Instructor of Music Technology at Summerour Middle School in Norcross, Ga in his second year of teaching. Mr. Williams is a native of New Orleans, LA and graduated Cum Laude from the University of Georgia in 2017. He obtained a Bachelor of Music in Music Education from the Hugh Hodgson School of Music and a Music Business Certificate from the Terry College of Business. While at the University of Georgia, Mr. Williams served as Drum Major of the Redcoat Marching Band and worked with the Concert Bands and Tuba/Euphonium ensemble as a guest conductor. He also served as Vice President of the Collegiate National Association. Mr. Williams was most recently featured as a soloist in the University of Georgia’s 2018 Midfest Festival as well as the 2018 GMEA In-Service Conference. His studies include conducting with Dr. Jaclyn Hartenberger as well as tuba with Mr. David Zerkel.
As an educator, Mr. Williams serves actively as a clinician, adjudicator, and private lessons instructor for both tuba and conducting. His professional affiliations include Georgia Music Educators’ Association, National Association for Music Education, Kappa Kappa Psi, and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.
Ms. Deller is in her 3rd year of teaching choral music at Summerour Middle School. It is her 7th year teaching in Gwinnett County Public Schools and 13th year total. Ms. Deller earned her Bachelors and Masters degrees in Choral Music Education from Central Michigan University. She also has completed a Specialist degree in Educational Administration.
As a professional singer, Ms. Deller has performed throughout Europe as well as the state of Michigan. She also sings with the Gwinnett Choral Guild here in Gwinnett County and serves as the Assistant Conductor. Ms. Deller has also served as a clinician for choral clinics and masterclasses in the state of Michigan as well as in Belgrade, Serbia.
Ms. Deller is a member of the following professional organizations: Georgia Music Educators Association, Music Educators National Conference, American Choral Directors Association, Chorus America and Sigma Alpha Iota.
Miss Rebecca Huong is the Orchestra Director at Summerour Middle School. A native of Lawrenceville, Georgia and graduated Cum Laude from the University of Georgia, she obtained a Bachelor of Music in Music Education from the Hugh Hodgson School of Music. She also served as Vice President of the collegiate chapter of the American String Teachers Association, as well as treasurer of the Collegiate National Association for Music Education. Her studies include a concentration on violin with Shakhida Azimkhodjaeva and performing with the UGA Symphony Orchestra. Prior to teaching at Summerour, Miss Huong taught at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Athens, and the UGA String Project.
I’m so excited about teaching and learning at Summerour Middle School I have the pleasure of working with some of the most creative students in the county. Although this is my first year at Summerour, this is my 9th year in Gwinnett County. Every day is a joy as I get to witness words, ideas and watching my students perform. In the past I have the honor of see my students perform Improvisation Scenes for Fox 5. My students also participated in an Improvisation Workshop with Tommy Ford, from the television show “Martin.” I pride myself on making my classroom the venue for self-expression, diversity and acceptance. When I’m not working with my talented students, I’m usually spending time with my family and friends. I also have a spoiled fat cat named Liam. I enjoy old movies, 80’s music and yummy Italian food. Thanks for visiting my page and thanks for supporting my wonderful Theatre Arts program.
About Ms. Samuels:
Alonzo A. Crim Comprehensive High School, East Atlanta, Ga.
Albany State University, Albany, Ga.
Mercer University, Macon, Ga.
Lesley University, Cambridge, MA
Social Studies- 6th Grade
Theatre Arts- 6th, 7th and 8th Grades
Hamlet by William Shakespeare
Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller
Seven Guitars by August Wilson
Miss Julie by August Strindberg
Dutchman, by Amiri Baraka
Raisin in the Sun, by Lorraine Hansberry
Lackawanna Blues by Ruben Santiago-Hudson
S. Epatha Merkerson
The World According to Garp by John Irving
Paradise by Toni Morrison
Bud, not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
Catherine Carmier by Ernest J. Gaines
Fahrenheit 454 by Ray Bradbury
Native Son by Richard Wright
Summerour Middle School
An IB World School, is committed to creating a culture of excellence by working hard and being nice.
321 Price Place Norcross, GA 30071