Glenn Taylor has been the conductor of the Portland Metro Concert Band since the groups’ 2017-2018 season.
Glenn first learned flute, then piano and saxophone, followed in his adult years by the trombone. In junior high school, he began conducting groups at school, and in high school was the Student Conductor of both the junior high and high school band. During his college years, he was the Conductor of the Cadet Band at the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY. While there, he led a brass ensemble that later joined both the Protestant and Catholic Chapel Choirs, playing with those groups both on campus and at locations in the northeastern United States.
After his military service, Glenn moved to Portland, where he founded Encore Brass in 1978, which he conducted until 2018 when he retired from the group and was named Conductor Emeritus. In 2003 he founded a saxophone ensemble, Second Wind, which played quartet, quintet and sextet repertoire. He joined the Dixie Cups, a Beaverton-based Dixieland group in 2014, playing baritone saxophone and trombone, and took over bandleader duties there in 2017 after the passing of the founder. From 2015 – 2017 he played with the Ne Plus Ultra Jass Orchestra as a reed player. Besides playing with the groups above, Glenn subs in other musical groups around town, mostly on flute and saxophone.
Glenn’s work career was primarily with non-profit organizations. He retired as Director of Operations at Saturday Academy in June 2015 and now resides in NE Portland.
Curt Cassingham’s mother is a talented classical pianist, so he was listening to music even before he was born. By third grade, he was playing his grandfather’s flute in his school’s orchestra. Once his parents were confident he’d continue, they got him his own instrument. His first exposure to band music was in his early teens, in the award-winning Burbank (California) Police Boys’ Band, playing in concerts and marching in many parades including the Pasadena’s Rose Parade. He also grew up singing in church choirs. As a young adult, Curt produced and directed his church’s long-running Living Christmas Tree program, whose choir comprised of high school-aged boys and girls.
After moving to the Portland area, Curt and a business partner opened and ran a recording studio, providing its services to local musicians and bands. Curt honed his listening and performing skills during the studio’s many recording sessions. Besides flute, he plays guitar and bass guitar.
Curt and his flute joined the Portland Metro Concert Band in its 2011-2012 season. He began serving as Assistant Music Director in fall 2018. He also plays flute with the East County Community Orchestra and occasionally guest conducts pieces with them.