Our Conductors

Mark Rogers - Principal Conductor

Dr. Mark Rogers

Founding and Principal Conductor​

R. Mark Rogers received his Doctorate of Musical Arts in Conducting from The University of Texas, having previously earned his Masters and Bachelors of Music Education degrees from Texas Tech University. His early teaching career included Graduate Teaching Assistant at Texas Tech University and The University of Texas, and staff arranger for the Longhorn Band; member of the band staff at Spring and Westfield High School (1977); Assistant Professor of Music/Director of Bands at South Plains College (Levelland, TX) 1978-1985; Assistant Professor of Music/Director of Bands at the University of South Alabama (Mobile) 1987-1993.

In 1980, his first published work, the overture to Verdi’s Opera, La Forza del Destino appeared with Southern Music Company, and in 1993 he joined the firm full time as Director of Publications. He continues as Managing Editor of Kaiser/Southern Music Company. His editions of the music of Percy Grainger and John Philip Sousa have entered band repertory worldwide. He has had his works performed by all five of the Washington, DC service bands. Rogers is widely published, and has works represented in the catalogs of Alfred, Boosey and Hawkes, E. C. Schirmer, European American Music, Hal Leonard, Ludwig, and Southern Music Company (United States), as well as G & M Brand, Molenaar, Peer Music, Schott Musik International, and Tierolff Muziekcentrale (Europe). Articles by Rogers have appeared in Teaching Music Through Performance in Band, The Instrumentalist Magazine, and the Texas Bandmasters’ Association Journal. Dr. Rogers is a current ASCAP member with over 60 works listed, (although his total number of collaborative works is much higher) earning royalties both domestic and international. His most recent works include the 5th Symphonies of Sergei Prokofiev, and Dmitri Shostakovich, complete.

Mark was a guest presenter at the Eastman School of Music on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the founding of Eastman Wind Ensemble. He has also guest conducted community and professional bands, regional honor bands and orchestras, and area high school and middle school bands and orchestras. Mark has multi-faceted experience in music theatre, appearing on stage many times, in substantial roles (notably Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady); conducting in the pit, countless times (Evita); as well as playing bassoon in many pit orchestras (Nutcracker). Mark serves on the San Antonio Arts Commission representing City Council District 10, is a member of San Antonio Musicians Society, Association of Concert Bands, Texas Music Educator’s Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, College Band Directors National Association, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, and the International Double Reed Society. Rogers serves on the adjunct faculty of three colleges in south and central Texas; and performs on bassoon and contrabassoon with six regional orchestras. Former members of his private bassoon studio have been accepted and continue their bassoon studies in numerous collegiate music programs and in professional orchestras both in the United States and Europe.

Dr. Rogers is the founding conductor of the 80-piece volunteer community band, the Heart of Texas Concert Band, which has performed over 100 free concerts in the San Antonio area in its 10 year existence. Under his leadership, the band performed the American premier of Menu by Spanish composer, Carlos Pellicer, which led to the commissioning of Euphoric City, written for the Tricentennial of San Antonio. Mark was instrumental in bringing composer Pellicer to San Antonio for the premier in May 2018. Among the notable soloists who have appeared with the band is Barry Hearn, Associate Principal Trombonist with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, who performed Johann de Meij’s T-Bone Concerto. Composer de Meij guest conducted the HTxCB at the Texas Bandmasters Association Convention/Clinic in 2012.

Rogers is the proud recipient of the Grainger Medallion, from the International Percy Grainger Society; the Commander’s Award for Excellence from the United States Army Field Band; and several Paul Revere awards for Graphic Excellence, from the Music Publisher’s Association.

His wife, Sudie, plays clarinet in the Heart of Texas Concert Band. The Rogers’ have a musical family, and all participate in the band performances when they can! Mark and Sudie take great delight in their family: Robert and wife Kelly and their daughters, Brynn and Olivia; James and wife Alyssa and their children, Bradley and Hannah; and John and wife Kami, and their sons Ethan and Levi.

Mike Olson - Assistant Conductor

John Goforth

Former Associate Conductor

John Goforth was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas. After graduating from Robert E. Lee High School in 1979, he attended Southwest Texas State University where he received his B.M.E. in 1983. After college he married his high school sweetheart, Nancy, and then became the Assistant Band Director at Winston Churchill High School where he taught until 1999. The following year he became the Head Band Director at Douglas MacArthur High School until 2009.

After 25 years of teaching high school band, he held a position at Bradley Middle School until retiring in 2013. During his career as a Band Director, he enthusiastically directed concert, marching and jazz bands. Under his direction and over the years, his bands received many awards at UIL contests, as well as marching, concert and jazz band festivals. He is a past member of TMEA, TBA, Phi Mu Alpha and Kappa Kappa Psi.

Mr. Goforth played in the San Antonio Rodeo Band for 15 years and played at Wurstfest for 16 years. He has played in the pit orchestra at the San Pedro Playhouse Theater and Woodlawn Theater for musicals such as A Chorus Line, Jesus Christ Superstar, Peter Pan and several others. One of his favorite accomplishments is that many of his former students continued to pursue music after high school with many of them now being Band Directors and professional musicians.

Since retiring, he now teaches private lessons to low brass students in NEISD. Mr. Goforth has two children, a daughter Barbara who lives and works as an RN in Seattle and a son Wesley who just graduated from UTSA with a degree in Music Education and is member of the Heart of Texas Band. Concert Band. In his free time he enjoys playing golf and traveling around the United States in their RV.

Mike Olson - Assistant Conductor

Mike Olson

Associate Conductor Emeritus

Mike Olson is retired after 39 years as a Texas band director. He earned his BM and MM degrees from North Texas State University in Denton, Texas. Mike is a Past President of Texas Bandmasters Association and a member of Phi Beta Mu, Phi Mu Alpha, TBA, TMEA, and TMAA. Mr. Olson has been on the UIL Advisory Board, TMEA Region Band Chairman, UIL Delius Award Nominee and in Who’s Who of American Teachers.

Mike began his teaching career as assistant at McAllen HS where the Varsity Band was named Texas Honor Band. He taught at Lampasas HS where the band became a consistent sweepstakes winner and then taught 17 years at Tuloso-Midway HS in Corpus Christi where the band was twice named Texas Honor Band Finalist. The T-M band also marched as a featured band in the Cotton Bowl Parade and Pre-game show. Bands under the direction of Mr. Olson have been consistent winners at UIL and festival competitions and he is kept busy as a consultant, clinician and adjudicator both in and outside of Texas. In 2009, Mike was inducted into the Texas Bandmasters Hall of Fame and is active as a performer on trumpet in the San Antonio area.

Mike and his wife, Pat, live in New Braunfels and have three daughters (Teri, Tristin & Traci), 3 sons-in-law (Richard, Joe & Rob), 8 grandchildren (Cole, Erin, Taylor, Nate, Brett, Scott, Jordyn and Warren), and 1 cat (Katy).