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Kansas State Bands


Call the Band Office at (785) 532-3816 to connect with any of our staff.

Amy TigheColor Guard Coordinator  AmyTighe@usd475.org
 Amy Tighe KSUMB

Amy is originally from Salina, KS. She graduated from Kansas State University in 2018 with a B.S. in Secondary Education with a minor in Leadership and Mathematics. During her time at K-State, she was very involved with he Pride of Wildcat Land and was a member of the Color Guard for 5 years. She served on the leadership team for 3 of those years including serving the role of head section leader her final year. She attributes much of her success to her time in the Marching Band. 

After Graduation, Amy stayed in Manhattan and took on a job as a Mathematics Teacher at Junction City High School. She continues to serve as a Math Teacher in Junction City teaching Algebra 2, Business Math, and Technical Mathematics 1 & 2. She is married to Stone Tighe who is retired from the Army and currently attending Kansas State University. They have bonded over their love for K-State football and rarely miss a game. Amy is incredibly grateful to be a part of such a wonderful program that brings so much joy to the University.


B.S. Secondary Education, Kansas State University, 2018

Sara HeptigClassy Cat & Twirler Coachksuclassycats@gmail.com 
Sara Heptig – Larkspur Dance

Sara Heptig coached the Olathe North Eaglettes for years, leading them to national championships for two different brands.  She is now coaching the Kansas State University Classy Cats, a role she cherishes because she too was a Classy Cat during her time at K-State! 

This past year, she led the 2021-22 Classy Cats as they won the title of National Champions in Florida!

Cally BitterlinGraduate Assistantcallyb@ksu.edu  

Cally Bitterlin is a PhD Candidate and graduate assistant at Kansas State University. She earned both her B.M.E and M.M. from Kansas State University in 2008 and 2011 respectively. While at K-State she was extremely involved in marching band and was a section leader and student staff during her undergraduate career. She has taught all grade levels K-12 in her 9 years of public school teaching. Cally has taught in Kansas, Texas, and Iowa.  

In Texas, Cally taught at University High School where she oversaw the concert and symphonic bands and assisted with the marching, jazz, and mariachi bands. She also proposed and received a piano classroom and taught 3 sections of group piano lessons. Cally implemented a leadership program and training at the high school and continued to do the same in Iowa. She was a performing member in the saxophone section in the Waco Community Band and the Temple Symphonic Band. Cally was also a clinician and adjudicator for several schools and events for high schools and middle schools in Texas and continues to do so in Kansas. In Iowa, she oversaw the entire band program including color guard, athletic bands, concert, and jazz bands. The jazz and marching bands traveled in and out of state for several competitions during her tenure. Cally continued to perform on saxophone soloing for different occasions in the district and playing euphonium at Tuba Christmas. 

Cally's professional affiliations include Texas Music Educators Association, Iowa Bandmasters Association, Kansas Music Educators Association, Women Band Directors International, Tau Beta Sigma, Kappa Delta Pi


B.M.E. Kansas State University, 2008
M.M. Kansas State University, 2011

Jack Johnson

Graduate Assisstant (Percussion)



Jack Johnson

Jack Johnson is the GA for the percussion studio and band program. Jack is completing his degree at UW-Eau Claire, where he studies with Dr. Jeff Crowell. Jack brings a wealth of experiences to the position. As a chamber/orchestral musician, he has performed at a recent PASIC, with multiple professional orchestras, and many other projects. His experience in the marching activity is extensive, including performance and instructional credits with numerous drum corps, indoor lines, and high school lines. In addition to his music/liberal arts studies, he will graduate from UW-EC with a degree in organizational communication and has business experience such as an internship with Dynasty Percussion.


Olivia Bazanos

Graduate Assistantowbazanos@ksu.edu


Olivia Bazanos

Olivia, originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and is one of the graduate assistants at Kansas State University. She earned her B.M. in Music Education from Slippery Rock University in 2021.  While at SRU she was extremely involved in marching band and was a section leader, fundamentals of marching chair, and head drum major during her undergraduate career.  She has taught instrumental band grades 4-12 in public school teaching.   Olivia was also an active performing member with the Slippery Rock University Winter Guard for two years.


Olivia has instructed as visual technician, guard instructor, and woodwind instructor at local high school marching bands and substituted within various Pennsylvania school districts.  Olivia is also an active volunteer with Music For All, spending two weeks of every summer as a S.W.A.G. Team Member during her Summer Symposium held in Muncie, Indiana.


Olivia’s professional affiliations include Pennsylvania Music Educators Association, National Association of Music Education, Music For All, Kansas Bandmasters Association, Kansas Music Educators Association, Women Band Directors International, Tau Beta Sigma, and Mu Phi Epsilon.



B.M. Slippery Rock University, 2021


Preston Thomas

Graduate Assistant



Preston T

Preston is from Lenexa, Kansas. He graduated from Kansas State University in 2019 with a Bachelor’s of Music Education Degree. During his time at Kansas State, he was involved with the Pride of Wildcat Land Marching Band as section leader of the snare line and president of the percussion studio chapter of Percussive Arts Society. Preston also played in the Wind Ensemble, Concert Band, Brass Ensemble, Woodwind Ensemble, Volleyball Pep Band, Basketball Pep Band, and Percussion Ensemble.


After graduating K-State Preston went to Medicine Lodge, Kansas and taught grade 6-12 band and choir. During his time at Medicine Lodge, he was able to receive Superior ratings at both regional and state level competitions with all of his groups which had not been done in recent memory. He was also fortunate to be able to assist in acquiring new technology to the music department with a new digital sound and lighting system which helped bring a new energy to the concerts and performances.


Tyler LeeGraduate Assistanttelee@ksu.edu 
 Tyler Lee

Tyler Lee is originally from Tulsa, Oklahoma, and is one of the graduate assistants at Kansas State University. Tyler earned his Bachelor of Music degree in Trombone Performance from Kansas State University (2019), and earned his Master’s of Music degree in Trombone Performance as well as his Graduate Certificate in Wind Band Conducting and Instrumental Studies from the University of Central Arkansas (2021,2022).

While at Kansas State University, Tyler participated in the Wind Ensemble, Wind Symphony, Pride of Wildcat Land, Cat Band, CJE, KSU Symphony Orchestra, Brass Ensemble, and Trombone Choir, as well as Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity.

During his time at the University of Central Arkansas, he served as a graduate assistant with the band area. He assisted with the day-to-day operation of the UCA band program and was on staff for the Bear Marching Band as well as the Purple Rage Basketball Band. He was also heavily involved in the trombone studio at UCA, performing with the Natural Slides trombone choir, the top trombone ensemble at UCA.

Tyler’s professional associations include the Arkansas Music Educators Association, Arkansas School Band and Orchestra Association, Texas Music Educators Association, Kansas Music Educators Association, College Band Director’s National Association, International Trombone Association, the Conductor’s Guild, and Kappa Kappa Psi – National Honorary Band Fraternity.