Stanford Thompson is a musician and educator who is passionate about using music for social action and serves as the Founder and Executive Director for the El Sistema-inspired program, Play On, Philly!. He also serves on the boards of El Sistema USA, Interlochen Center for the Arts, Curtis Institute of Music and the Philadelphia Chapter of the American Composers Forum. He regularly contributes to the communities of TED, League of American Orchestras, and El Sistema-inspired initiatives around the world. Trained as a professional trumpeter, Mr. Thompson has performed and soloed with major orchestras around the world while actively performing chamber music and jazz. Stanford is a native of Atlanta, GA and holds degrees from The Curtis Institute of Music and the New England Conservatory’s Abreu Fellows Program.

MICHAEL W. PETTIS, Vice President

Michael W. Pettis is a passionate musician, composer, arranger, and educator whose life’s work is to inspire creativity, growth, and understanding through music. Michael has earned his Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Theory and Composition from West Chester University of Pennsylvania. At West Chester University Michael studied composition with Larry Nelson, Andrew Yozviak, Mark Rimple, Van Stiefel, Adam Silverman, and Robert Maggio. Michael also studied tuba under the guidance of Jonathan Fowler during his undergraduate career. Continuing his education, Michael is currently pursuing his Masters in Music Performance on Tuba, at Rutgers University. Michael studies tuba with Alan Bear, Principal Tuba of the New York Philharmonic, and Brass Department Chair at Rutgers University. As a performer, Michael has had the pleasure of playing alongside various artists such as Canadian Brass, Tine Thing Helseth, and Michael Truesdell. Michael is currently an active member of Rutgers University Brass Ensemble, and Graduate Brass Quintet, and the Philadelphia Wind Symphony. Michael has participated in multiple recording sessions as can be heard on the following albums; Borrowed Inspirations, Reanimations, and Like a Flame to a Moth. 


Harvey Price has been proudly teaching percussion at the University of Delaware for more than 30 years. He is an associate professor of music and is head of the percussion area. Mr. Price is an active educator, performer and clinician. These activities have taken him to Sweden, Germany, Greece, Israel and Trinidad. Upcoming tours include Trinidad and Austria. Mr. Price performs regularly with the Philadelphia Orchestra, OperaDelaware, The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia and the DuPont Theater Orchestra. He is an active steel drummer, jazz vibist and traditional jazz performer on the xylophone. Mr. Price lives in Center City Philadelphia with his wife, pianist Linda Henderson.




Andrew Lesser is a founding member of the Philadelphia Wind Symphony and currently serves as Principal Clarinet. He is the Director of Music at the Wilbur Watts Intermediate School in Burlington, New Jersey and Adjunct Professor of Music at Rowan College at Burlington County. A published composer, Andrew's works are available through Kjos, Musica Propria, and Grand Mesa Music, and is featured in the 10th volume of Teaching Music Through Performance in Band. He has presented music education seminars throughout the New Jersey area, including Rutgers University, Rowan University, The College of New Jersey, and at the NJMEA Convention in New Brunswick. Andrew possesses a Bachelors Degree from the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, a Masters Degree from the University of Maryland, and is currently pursuing his Doctoral studies in Music Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. He resides in Mt. Laurel, New Jersey with his wife Meg; further information can be found at his website at