Faculty Bios

Hill Baker is a composer, multi-instrumentalist, and music educator based in Denver. He received his BM in Guitar Performance from Denver University with honors, and his MM in Music Composition, also from DU. He is an active performer, playing Jazz, Rock, Calypso, Reggae, Folk, Avant Garde, and Electronic music in Paer, Neptune Massive, Urban Island, Strings and Steel, and The Steve Law Band, among other projects. He is an active studio musician, engineering, producing, and performing on numerous albums for other Denver artists. Hill is the program lead for RRCC's Music Program. He teaches Commercial Guitar lessons, Rock History, World Music, Jazz History, Music in Film, Music Appreciation, and several online courses at RRCC.

Ira Bigelow, Ph.D., earned music degrees from Metropolitan State College and CU Boulder; he also holds a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership from UC Denver. Dr. Bigelow has managed arts programs for Denver Public Schools, Wellshire Presbyterian Church, Community College of Denver, Denver Junior Police Choir, ArtsStreet, Colorado Online Learning, and UC Denver. He is a member of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, American Choral Directors Association, Colorado Association for Music Curriculum and Instruction, Colorado Music Educators Association, Advocates for Balanced Education, and Kappa Delta Pi.

Jonathan Cullison holds a Bachelor’s in Jazz Composition from the University of South Florida and a Master’s in Bass Performance and Jazz Composition from DU’s Lamont School of Music. He is an active performer, playing all styles of music with Moment’s Notice, Latin jazz with Señor Gato, and bluegrass/rock with Homegrown Jones, among others. Cullison is also active in Music Technology, developing a new program for the Colorado School of Mines.

Olga Dashevskaya, a native of Ukraine in the former Soviet Union, gave her first public concert at the age of eight. She studied at the Special Music School for Gifted Children and the Kharkov State Conservatory, from which she graduated with Honors and received Master’s degrees in piano and music history. Olga began her professional music career in Moscow as an editor of music programs at the Moscow State Philharmonic, and later was an editor at the State Publishers “Muzica.” She published numerous articles on music history, produced music radio programs, and performed concerts. Since moving to the United States in 1990, Olga has given numerous solo performances and lectures, performed with various symphony orchestras, and successfully collaborated with noted vocalists and instrumentalists. Olga runs her own music school and is an instructor of Piano performance, Music Theory and Music Appreciation at Red Rocks Community College.

Bob Jurkscheit

Coming soon.

Mike Lucas has been a professional musician for over 35 years. He has a BME from Colorado State University and a Master’s in conducting from the University of Denver. He is a 35-year member of the Denver Municipal Band, the oldest professional band in the nation, and on occasion performs as assistant conductor. Playing all saxophones, clarinet, and flute, Mike has performed with such renowned musicians as Ella Fitzgerald, Robert Goulet, Nelson Riddle, Mel Tormé, Johnny Mathis, Manhattan Transfer, Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gormé, Clark Terry, Bobby Shew, Vikki Carr, and many others. He continues to play with the Dean Bushnell Orchestra and Prestige Music here in Denver. Mike currently teaches History of Jazz and clarinet at Red Rocks Community College, and is Conductor/Director of RRCC’s ensemble, the Mile High Community Band.

Rick Mongrain earned his BME from Colorado State University and Master’s in Arts Education from Leslie College in Cambridge, Mass. He taught in the Denver Public Schools for 30 years, teaching Beginning, Intermediate and Concert Bands, Orchestra, Jazz Band, and AP Music Theory. Rick has been teaching private music lessons for 15 years, specializing in the woodwind family, viz. flute, clarinet, and saxophone. He has been a member of the Denver Musicians Association for 37 years, and has played professionally for all that time. A member of The Denver Municipal Band for 36 years, he has played at shows including the Ice Capades, Ringling Brothers Circus, The Platters, and Leslie Gore. Rick is Conductor of the Intermediate Band and the “Combonians” Jazz Combo of RRCC’s ensemble, the Mile High Community Band.

Dr. Kimberly Patterson has earned recognition for her artistry as a solo, chamber, and orchestral musician.  Hailed by the Chicago Sun Times as a "superb cellist," Dr. Patterson was the founding cellist for the Tesla Quartet, winners of the 2012 Fischoff Chamber Music Competition as well as prizewinners of the 2012 London International Quartet Competition and the 2013 Bordeaux International Quartet Competition.  Dr. Patterson is the cellist of the Patterson / Sutton cello with RRCC guitar professor, Dr. Patrick Sutton.  Their debut album, Cold Dark Matter: Music for Cello and Guitar, was released by MSR records in 2013.  In addition to her extensive chamber music career, Dr. Patterson was a member of the Colorado Symphony.  A graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Music with academic honors, Dr. Patterson earned her Master's of Music Degree at the Julliard School and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University of Colorado at Boulder.  She teaches Cello, Music Theory, and Music Appreciation at RRCC.

Heidi Schmidt

Coming soon.

Laura Schulkind, Founder and Executive Director of Mountain Chamber Music Society, performs as principal flute with the Society. Through MCMS, Schulkind has developed an alliance between the Mountain Chamber Music Society, Denver Public Schools, St. Vrain Valley School District, and the Kennedy Center Partners in Education program. Schulkind holds a Master of Music degree in flute performance, and a Master of Arts in Education degree. Her major teachers include Maralyn Prestia, David Shostac, Samuel Baron, and Leone Buyse.

Bob Studinger, Ed.D., has been in the business of music for 30 years. He has composed for nearly all styles of music including scores for TV, radio, films, and major orchestras. Dr. Studinger studied Composition in the graduate program at CU Boulder. He also earned a Broadcaster of the Year award for Best Radio Commercial and has received numerous regional Emmy awards for music scores of televised documentaries. In addition, Dr. Studinger has composed for major and regional symphony orchestras and ballet companies, and is the owner of SoundScores studio.

Dr. Patrick Sutton enjoys a multi-faceted, international career as a performer, lecturer, and educator.  Recent highlights include a concert tour of South Africa with flutist Cobus du Toit.  His collaboration with cellist Kimberly Patterson has led to performances across the country, a guest artist residency at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music in Kabul, and a recent lecture-recital at the 2014 Guitar Foundation of America Convention in Los Angeles.  The Patterson/Sutton Duo's debut album, Cold Dark Matter: Music for Cello and Guitar, was released in 2013 on MSR classics to critical acclaim.  After studying with Ricardo Iznaola at the University of Denver's Lamont School of Music, Patrick earned his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Colorado under the tutelage of Jonathan Leathwood.  Patrick teaches Classical Guitar, Music Appreciation, and Music Theory at Red Rocks Community College.

Doug Tapia

Coming soon.