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San Marcos Music Academy

565 North Arizona Avenue

Chandler, AZ 85225

(480) 292-7955


565 North Arizona Avenue

Chandler, AZ 85225

(480) 292-7955


Mallet Percussion

Chris Holley

Christopher Holley teaches music at Hamilton High School and is the Band Director at the Arizona Preparatory Academy in Chandler, Arizona. Chris holds a B.A. degree in Music Education and Music Performance in Percussion from Fort Lewis College in Colorado, and a Masters of Music Performance degree in Percussion from the University of New Mexico.

Chris has 25 years experience teaching percussion at the high school and junior high levels. He specializes in teaching music reading, 4 mallet marimba, marching percussion, and world percussion. Chris is a frequent educational clinician at the Arizona Music Educators Association Conference specializing in percussion education. His performance experience includes being a member of the Cadets of Bergen County, Star of Indiana, and Arizona Sun Drum and Bugle Corps, 2nd place winner of the Music Teachers National Association National Marimba Concerto Competition, and the principal timpanist for the San Juan Symphony. Chris is a member of the National Association for Music Education, Arizona Music Educators Association, Arizona Band and Orchestra Directors Association, and the Percussive Arts Society.

Thomas Buchanan is an active front ensemble instructor in the Phoenix metro area. Since December of 2014 he has taught at various high schools including Mesa and Casa Grande Union. He also served on staff at Shadow Drum and Bugle Corps for the 2017 season. He currently works with Vision Percussion, Perry High School, and Basha High School, as well as The Academy Drum and Bugle Corps.

Thomas’s performance experience includes The Academy Drum and Bugle Corps 2013-2016, where he was section leader for his last two years. He has also performed with Breakthrough Percussion and the percussion ensembles at Chandler-Gilbert Community College and Northern Arizona University. He has been taught by instructors such as Dr. Mark Eichenberger, Tim Berg, and Dustin Roa and impacted by many others, especially students and colleagues.

Thomas holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Arizona State University.

Thomas Buchanan

Jennifer Johnson is an emerging front ensemble instructor in the Valley. She has been practicing mallet percussion for over 6 years, and served as a student teacher at Payne Junior High School.

Jennifer’s experience includes four years of high school marching band, percussion ensemble, and winter percussion. She has also spent time involved in the Chandler-Gilbert Community College percussion ensemble. Recently, she participated in a season of The Academy Drum and Bugle Corps on marimba. Currently, Jennifer is in the Sun Devil Marching Band. She has been taught under such instructors as Thomas Kurator, Nick Quan, Sarah Vasquez, Juan Oliveros, Thomas Buchanan, and Josh Gottry.

Jennifer is currently pursuing a Bachelor's in Biomedical Sciences at Arizona State University.

Jennifer Johnson