Paradise Winds, a Phoenix, AZ-based reed quintet, met while pursuing advanced degrees in music at Arizona State University and have been performing together since 2005. Paradise Winds appeared to over a million weekly listeners on American Public Media’s Performance Today in 2011 and 2013. In recent past, Paradise Winds was featured in the Phoenix-based award-winning Downtown Chamber Series, collaborated with the Grammy-winning Phoenix Chorale, and have appeared with Classical Revolution PHX.
Individual members of Paradise Winds have appeared with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, New World Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, AIMS Festival Orchestra (Graz, Austria), Wintergreen Summer Music Festival Orchestra (Virginia, USA), and in Arizona with the Phoenix Symphony, Tucson Symphony Orchestra, Arizona Opera, and Ballet Arizona.
The quintet has performed at annual conferences for the International Double Reed Society (IDRS) held in Arizona, Ohio, California, Tokyo, Georgia, and Wisconsin, and for the 2014 International Clarinet Association conference in Louisiana. They have also performed at North American Saxophone Alliance conferences in 2011, 2012, and 2015.
Active teachers, members of Paradise Winds hold positions at Arizona State University, the Maricopa Community Colleges (Phoenix-area), and have served in positions and given residencies abroad in Austria, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Ecuador, and Qatar.
Agents of new repertoire, Paradise Winds has commissioned works by Deborah Kavasch, John Marvin, Robbie McCarthy, Kurt Mehlenbacher, Alyssa Morris, and Kincaid Rabb, and premiered the first-ever North American concerto grosso for reed quintet and orchestra by Graham Cohen during the 2014-2015 season with MusicaNova Orchestra.
Joseph Kluesener - Bassoon
A versatile performer, educator and concert curator, Joseph Kluesener maintains a diverse career. Kluesener is Second Bassoonist at Wintergreen Summer Music Festival (VA), and has performed with the United States Air Force, The Phoenix Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Kentucky Symphony, and appeared on American Public Media’s Performance Today with Paradise Winds. Internationally, Kluesener has performed and/or taught at Aveiro International Music Festival (Portugal), Saarburg Serenaden (Germany), and at IDRS 2015 Tokyo; nationally, in conferences of the International Viola Society, North American Saxophone Alliance, International Clarinet Association and the International Double Reed Society. In 2015, Kluesener was appointed Executive & Artistic Director of Fountain Hills Chamber Players (Fountain Hills, AZ) and is co-founder and event curator for Classical Revolution PHX. Also in 2015, Kluesener was appointed to the faculty at Grand Canyon University, and remains Adjunct Faculty in the Maricopa Community College District, while teaching a private studio. He has earned Doctor of Musical Arts and Master of Music degrees from Arizona State University, and two Bachelors of Music cum laude from University of Cincinnati. Kluesener’s other interests include cooking, pickleball, bikram yoga, hiking, camping and traveling.
Joshua Gardner - Clarinet
Joshua Gardner is Clinical Associate Professor of Music and Director of the Performance Physiology Research Laboratory at Arizona State University, where he has taught since 2011. He maintains an active performance career, performing with several ensembles, including the internationally recognized Paradise Winds and Égide Duo, and is a frequent soloist with high school and college ensembles. He has performed and lectured at conferences for the International Clarinet Association, European Clarinet Association, International Double Reed Society, and North American Saxophone Alliance and has been featured on American Public Radio’s Performance Today.
In addition to performing and teaching, Gardner has a strong interest in woodwind pedagogy and research. He won first prize at the International Clarinet Association Research Competition in 2008 and has presented lectures on tongue motion during clarinet performance throughout the US, often accompanied by live tongue imaging. He is currently exploring the use of ultrasound for quantified research and performance diagnostics. As part of the PPR Lab, Gardner often mentors student research initiatives ranging from examining embouchure force dynamics using thin-film force transducers to exploring non-articulatory tongue motion during saxophone performance using ultrasound imaging. He is also a member of the interdisciplinary ASU research group, SAMBA – Science of Art, Music, and Brain Activity. The group plans to integrate ecologically-based perceptual scene-analysis theory, music performance and education principles, and neural brain modeling tests to further our understanding of music perception and education. They recently won a collaborative grant with neuroscientists from the Mayo Clinic to develop pre-surgical mapping procedures to preserve cognitive functions important to professional musician patients.
Dr. Gardner received Bachelor’s degrees in Music Education and Clarinet Performance from the University of Kentucky and the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Arizona State University. Gardner is a Henri Selmer Paris/Conn-Selmer Performing Artist playing Privilege clarinets, a Silverstein Pro Team Artist, and uses Vandoren mouthpieces.
Stefanie Harger Gardner - Bass Clarinet
Stefanie Harger Gardner is on the faculty at Glendale Community College, maintains a large private clarinet studio in the Phoenix Metropolitan Area, and teaches at summer music festivals. She has served on the faculty at Northern Arizona University, Mesa Community College, and GateWay Community College. She completed degrees in clarinet performance at Arizona State University, studying with Robert Spring. Gardner frequently performs with Arizona Opera, the internationally recognized Paradise Winds, Égide Duo, the Phoenix Symphony, Seventh Roadrunner, and abroad in Belgium, France, Italy, and Japan. In addition to performing and teaching, Gardner has a strong interest in woodwind pedagogy. In 2012, Gardner won first prize at the International Clarinet Association Research Competition with her study, “An Investigation of Finger Motion and Hand Posture during Clarinet Performance,” where she collaborated with the Center for Cognitive Ubiquitous Computing at ASU to study hand posture and finger motion during clarinet performance using CyberGloves®. Gardner has performed in conferences for the International Clarinet Association, the International Double Reed Society, the North American Saxophone Alliance, and the International Viola Society. She is a Silverstein Pro Team Artist and a Henri Selmer Paris Artist performing on Privilege clarinets.
Tiffany Pan - Oboe
Tiffany pan is currently pursuing Doctoral studies in Music Performance at Arizona State University (ASU), where she has held multiple graduate assistantships in music. In 2013, Pan advanced as a semi-finalist in the Elite Division at the 2nd Asian Double Reed Association International Oboe Competition. In 2010, she won the ASU Concert of Soloists and performed the Kalliwoda Concertino with the ASU Symphony Orchestra. In the summers of 2009 and 2010, Pan was invited to perform in the University of Illinois Taiwan Alumni Charity Concerts and also participated in the premiere of Soul United by Zack Browning. In the summer of 2014, Pan was invited to the Vianden Festival in Luxembourg to perform as Guest Artist and coach chamber music ensembles. She also spent two weeks in January of 2014 as guest principal oboist of Tucson Symphony Orchestra. A Native of Taiwan, Tiffany Pan received her Master’s degree from Arizona State University and holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She has studied the oboe with Martin Schuring, John Dee, Ting-Hung Liu and Peggy Lee, as well as taken lessons and master classes with Robert Atherholt, Pedro Diaz, John Ferrillo, Erin Hannigan, Christoph Hartmann, Gordon Hunt, Dwight Parry, Dan Stopler, Charles Veazey and Richard Woodhams.
Patrick Murphy - Saxophones
Patrick Murphy (saxophone) is currently Artist Coordinator at the ground-breaking Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, AZ. Previously, he served on the faculty of the Crane School of Music, State University of New York, College at Potsdam. He completed his doctorate from Arizona State University in 2013, and holds degrees from The University of Michigan, and the Crane School of Music. He has studied saxophone with Timothy McAllister, Donald Sinta, and Eric Lau and composition with David Heinick. He has performed throughout North and South America with tours spanning Michigan, Illinois, Tennessee, Arizona, Ecuador and Peru. He was the last saxophonist to perform with the New World Symphony in The Lincoln Theater, and the first saxophonist to perform in the Frank Gehry-designed New World Center. Most recently, he performed with the Chicago Symphony in their presentation of Charlie Chaplin’s City Lights.
Nathan De'Shon Myers - Guest Narrator
American singer/conductor, Nathan De'Shon Myers has established himself as a versatile artist with international appeal. His hybrid career spans 20 years and includes professional performance in opera, jazz, and gospel, choral & opera conducting, private voice instruction, classroom teaching, and leading and managing teachers. He has been a featured soloist with opera companies and orchestras throughout the United States and across Europe including Theater Neustreliz, Stadttheater Trier, Salzburg Landestheater, Chautauqua Opera, Dallas Opera, Opera Louisiane, the Amalfi Coast Festival in Italy and Deutsche Oper Berlin where, as a fest soloist he, performed roles such as Dandini in La Cenerentola, Dancairo in Carmen, Schaunard in La Boheme, Ping in Turandot, Marullo in Rigoletto and Matthieu in Andrea Chenier, and more. Other roles performed include the title roles of Gianni Schicchi, Don Giovanni, and Johnny in Ernst Krenek’s Johnny Spielt Auf. During the summer of 2018, Myers revamped his role as Julian in the South African premiere of the American opera Wading Home.
Having collaborated with notable artists such as Kristin Chenoweth, Maurice Brown, Robert “Sput” Searight, and Tamela Mann, Myers maintains a national and international presence in the gospel and jazz worlds as well. He released his debut urban gospel album, Making A Way in 2014 and was a member of the recording ensemble for Kirk Franklin’s Grammy Award-Winning album, Losing My Religion in 2015 and lent his voice and musicianship to the soundtracks of the movies Hidden Figures in 2016 and The Star in 2017.
Equally passionate about education, Myers holds music degrees from the University of Tulsa, Mannes College of Music, and Southern Methodist University and was featured in Old Navy’s National Back-To-School campaign OnWard performing a song he co-wrote entitled “Sing Out”. A former member of the music faculty at the highly-acclaimed Booker T. Washington HSPVA in Dallas, he served as the Music Conservatory Director and Head of Opera & Vocal Studies. During his 7-year tenure there, Myers consistently earned UIL sweepstakes ratings with his Tenor/Bass Choirs, developed a fully-integrated opera training program, and founded a highly sought-after curriculum-based Gospel Choir. He was honored to co-conduct the school's Varsity Treble Choir in their 2016 TMEA Convention Honor Performance and was asked to serve as a clinician for TMEA’s Region XX 9/10 Treble Honor Choir in 2017.
In the fall of 2018, Myers joined the music faculty at Arizona State University where he currently serves as Assistant Professor of Voice. In 2019, Myers was a featured soloist on the album: a Bizzy Christmas with Friends and released the single “I Wish You Would” from his much-anticipated sophomore album entitled Found My Joy, to be released in 2020 with RSVP Records. Recent performances include Carmina Burana with the Mount Desert Summer Chorale, featured performances with Tempe Winds as well as featured performances at the New Orleans Jazz Fest and the A-Trane Jazz Club in Berlin, Germany.