Dr. Chris Combest

Assistant Professor

Dr. Chris Combest
615-898-2476
Room WMB 269, Wright Music Building (WMB)
MTSU Box 47, Murfreesboro, TN 37132
Office Hours

By appointment in person and via Zoom.

Departments / Programs

Degree Information

  • DMA, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (2009)
  • MM, University of Louisville (2005)
  • BM, Eastern Kentucky University (2001)

Areas of Expertise

Tuba, Euphonium, Brass Chamber Music, Music Appreciation, Online Teaching.

Biography

Dr. Chris Combest serves as assistant professor of music at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, TN, where he leads an active career as a performer and educator. In addition to teaching applied tuba, he conducts the MTSU euphonium-tuba ensemble and instructs brass chamber music. A faculty fellow and a member of the graduate faculty, Dr. Combest is also co-director of the Stones River Chamber Players, the music faculty ensemble-in-residence at MTSU, and performs with the MTSU Fac...

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Dr. Chris Combest serves as assistant professor of music at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, TN, where he leads an active career as a performer and educator. In addition to teaching applied tuba, he conducts the MTSU euphonium-tuba ensemble and instructs brass chamber music. A faculty fellow and a member of the graduate faculty, Dr. Combest is also co-director of the Stones River Chamber Players, the music faculty ensemble-in-residence at MTSU, and performs with the MTSU Faculty Brass. Prior to joining the music faculty at MTSU, he served on the faculties of the University of Texas-San Antonio, Southern Illinois University, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and is former Principal Tuba with the Louisville Orchestra in Louisville, KY.

As a performer, Dr. Combest is Principal Tuba with the Nashville Opera and has also appeared with the Indianapolis Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, Lexington Philharmonic, Illinois Symphony, Orchestra Kentucky, the Victoria Symphony (TX), the Dallas Wind Symphony, the Tone Road Ramblers and various artists including film composer John Williams, the Canadian Brass, and Audra McDonald. In addition to his work in Nashville, he can be heard on broadcasts for National Public Radio, the B.B.C., and on hundreds of recording credits for Sony, Disney, and Hal Leonard publishing. A few of his commercial recording credits include "Andres Cardenas - Violin Concertos of Barber, Stock, and Copland" (Albany), "Brass Masters: Vol. XI" with the Lexington Brass Band (Polyphonic), and "Live from St. Louis" with the Saxton's Cornet Band. His latest solo recording titled "Under Tennessee Skies" features new music for the tuba inspired by Tennessee and was recognized with a Silver Medal for Outstanding Achievement by the Global Music Awards and a nomination for the Roger Bobo Award for Excellence in Recording by the International Tuba Euphonium Association in 2021.

As a teacher, Dr. Combest's students are active throughout the United States, both as professional performers and music educators. His students have won ITEA Competitions, placed in the artist and young artist divisions of the Leonard Falcone International Solo Competition, are members of U.S. professional orchestras and military bands, and occupy college teaching positions. Dr. Combest has adjudicated various international solo competitions including the Leonard Falcone Competition, the Asociación Española de Tubas y Bombardinos (AETYB) Competitions, the International Tuba Euphonium Association Competitions and has performed at many national and international conferences, festivals, and workshops, including the International Tuba Euphonium Conference, the Burgos Chamber Music Festival and the U.S. Army Band Tuba-Euphonium Workshop in Washington, D.C.

As a dynamic supporter of new music, Dr. Combest has commissioned dozens of new works for the tuba and euphonium in collaboration with such composers as Barbara York, John Stevens, Rodney Newton, Robert Litton, James Grant, James Stephenson, and Ethan Wickman. He is a member of the Board of Directors for the Leonard Falcone International Euphonium Tuba Competition, where he serves as the Tuba Competitions Music Chair and is a Life Member of the International Tuba Euphonium Association (ITEA). Dr. Combest holds a B.M. from Eastern Kentucky University, an M.M. from the University of Louisville, a D.M.A. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and his teachers include Roger Bobo, Mark Moore, John Jones, and Jim Willett.

Dr. Combest is a Performing Artist and Clinician for Melton Meinl Weston and B&S instruments.

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Publications

AS REVIEWER
“Street-Beat” for tuba-euphonium quartet by Mike Forbes. [Review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 47 No. 2 (winter 2019), New Materials.
“New Horizons” by the Houston Brass Quintet. [CD Recording review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 46 No. 4 (summer 2019), New Materials.
“Movere” for solo euphonium by Chris Dickey. [Review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 46 No. 4 (summer 2019), New Materials.
“Six Album Le...

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AS REVIEWER
“Street-Beat” for tuba-euphonium quartet by Mike Forbes. [Review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 47 No. 2 (winter 2019), New Materials.
“New Horizons” by the Houston Brass Quintet. [CD Recording review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 46 No. 4 (summer 2019), New Materials.
“Movere” for solo euphonium by Chris Dickey. [Review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 46 No. 4 (summer 2019), New Materials.
“Six Album Leaves, from Op. 51” by Rheinhold Gliere. Arranged for euphonium and piano by Ralph Sauer. [Review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 46 No. 4 (summer 2019), New Materials.
“Second Year: FlexDuets” arranged for bass clef instruments by Carl Strommen. [Review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 45 No. 4 (summer 2018), New Materials.
“Dualities” CD Recording with Steven Darling, tuba and Naoko Tanaka, piano with Preston Light, tuba. Emeritus Records. [Review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 45 No. 4 (summer 2018), New Materials.
"Deep Inside the Sacred Temple". Euphonium duet and piano. Georges Bizet. Arr. Noah D. Taylor. ITEA Journal, Vol. 45 No. 2 (winter 2017), New Materials. "Agnus Dei 2 from Missa O sacrum convivium". Brass Quintet. Giovanni Palestrina. Transcribed by Michael Brown. ITEA Journal, Vol. 45 No. 2 (winter 2017), New Materials.
"When it was raining…" John Carbon. ITEA Journal, Vol. 45 No. 2 (winter 2017), New Materials.
“Ulricht from Symphony No. 2, Resurrection Symphony by Gustav Mahler and arranged for solo tuba and piano by Joseph Caladrise” [Review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 41 No. 2 (winter 2014), New Materials.
“Into the Void for brass quintet by Lon W. Chaffin” [Review] ITEA Journal, Vol. 41 No. 2 (winter 2014), New Materials.
“Three Madrigal Fantasias by John Ward (1572-1638) arranged for Brass Quintet by Roger C. Vogel.” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 38 No. 3 (spring 2011), New Materials.
“Echoes of Syros CD Recording by Stuart Dempster, Tom Heasley and Erik Glick” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 37 No. 3 (spring 2010), New Materials.
“18 Preludes for Tuba by Hubert Collinet (c.1797-c.1867) edited by Wesley Jacobs” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 37 No. 3 (spring 2010), New Materials.
“Practice Room Strategies” [Video] Power Lessons with the Pros, Int. Tuba Euphonium Assoc., http://www.iteaonline.org/members/pedagogy/power_lessons.php, (January, 2010), online video projects.
“Magnetics for Two Tubas by Walter Sear” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 37 No. 3 (spring 2010), New Materials.
“Cascades CD recording featuring Carol Jantsch” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 37 No. 1 (fall 2009), New Materials.
“Arabesco IV for solo tuba by Carlos Marques (Balaú)” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 36 No. 2 (winter 2009), New Materials.
“Three Perspectives for Tuba Quartet by Elizabeth Raum” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 36 No. 2 (winter 2009), New Materials.
“Voodoo for Tuba and Piano by Robert Grenier” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 36 No. 2 (winter 2009), New Materials.
“Amalthea by Brett Miller,” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 36 No. 2 (winter 2009), New Materials.
“Ave Verum Corpus by W.A. Mozart arranged by Sabourin” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 35 No. 3 (spring 2008), New Materials.
“Concerto for Tuba by Darrol Barry” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 35 No. 3 (spring 2008), New Materials.
“One Clear Call CD recording featuring Nick Etheridge” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 35 No. 4 (summer 2008), New Materials.
“…And When I Die by Laura Nyro for tuba solo by Dave Bargeron” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 35 No. 4 (summer 2008), New Materials.
“Prelude & Fugue in G minor by J.S. Bach transcribed/arranged by Sabourin” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 35 No. 3 (spring 2008), New Materials.
“Cathedral Rondeau by Randy Snider” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 35 No. 1 (fall 2007), New Materials.
“Three Moods for Euphonium and Piano by Barton Cummings” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 35 No. 1 (fall 2007), New Materials.
“Were You There? arranged by Randy Snyder” [Review] ITEA Journal Vol. 35 No. 1 (fall 2007), New Materials.

AS EDITOR
“Toccata Marziale by Ralph Vaughan Williams” Christopher Moore. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 44 No. 3 (spring 2017)
“The German CC Tuba” Louis Kline. Nuts and Bolts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 44 No. 3 (spring 2017)
“Thunder and Blazes by Julius Fucik” Jarrod Williams. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 44 No. 2 (winter 2017)
“Building 4/4 CC Horns from Vintage Instruments” Sam Gnagey. Nuts and Bolts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 44 No. 2 (winter 2017)
“Stars and Stripes Forever by John Philip Sousa” JoAnna Ross Hersey. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 44 No. 1 (fall 2016)
“Festival Variations by Claude T. Smith” Tormod Flaten. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 43 No. 4 (summer 2016)
“Rufford Park Poachers from Percy Grainger’s Lincolnshire Posy” John Cradler. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 43 No. 3 (spring 2016)
“Hindemith’s Symphony in B-flat for Concert Band, Mvmt. 1” Scott Cameron. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 43 No. 2 (winter 2015)
“So…You Want to Add Valves to Your Tuba?” Dan Schultz. Nuts and Bolts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 43 No. 2 (winter 2015)
“The Roman Carnival Overture by Hector Berlioz/arr. Safranek” Adam Lessard. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 43 No. 1 (fall 2015)
“Frankentuba” Dan Schultz and T.J. Ricer. Nuts and Bolts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 43 No. 1 (fall 2015)
“First Suite and Toccata Marziale” James Hicks. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 42 No. 4 (summer 2015)
“Advice for young students: Choosing your first tuba” Joe Sellmansberger. Nuts and Bolts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 42 No. 4 (summer 2015)
“Thunder and Blazes” Lance LaDuke. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 42 No. 3 (spring 2015)
“Brace Yourself!” Martin Wilk. Nuts and Bolts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 42 No. 3 (spring 2015)
“Aegean Festival Overture by Andreas Makris” Gregory Battista. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 42 No. 2 (winter 2015)
“King Rotary Tubas” Dan Schultz. Nuts and Bolts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 42 No. 2 (winter 2015)
“An Unusual Reunion” John Elliot. Nuts and Bolts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 42 No. 1 (fall 2014)
“Percy Grainger’s Colonial Song” Jeremy McBride. Experts’ Excerpts Colum: ITEA Journal Vol. 42 No. 1 (fall 2014)
“Schoeberg’s Theme and Variations, Op. 43a Variation V” Chris Buckley. Experts’ Excerpts Colum: ITEA Journal Vol. 41 No. 3 (spring 2014)
“Holst’s First Suite in Eb for Militart Band” John Caputo. Experts’ Excerpts Colum: ITEA Journal Vol. 41 No. 2 (winter 2014)
“The Stars and Stripes Forever by John Philip Sousa” Lauren Veronie. Experts’ Excerpts Colum: ITEA Journal Vol. 41 No. 1 (fall 2013)
“Pineapple Poll by Arthur Sullivan and Charles Mackerras Arranged for Military Band by W.J. Duthoit, A.R.C.M.” Danny Visnon. Experts’ Excerpts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 40 No. 4 (Summer 2013)
“Second Suite in F by Gustav Holst” Lauren Veronie. Experts’ Excerpts Colum: ITEA Journal Vol. 40 No. 3 (spring 2013)
“Festive Overture by Dimitri Shostakovich” Matt Tropman. Experts’ Excerpts Colum: ITEA Journal Vol. 40 No. 2 (winter 2013)
“Cleanliness is next to…Musicality” Joe Sellmansberger. Nuts and Bolts Column: ITEA Journal Vol. 40 No. 1 (fall 2012)

AS AUTHOR
“The 32nd Annual Leonard Falcone Euphonium-Tuba Festival” [Article] ITEA Journal, Vol. 45 No. 1 (fall 2017), Feature.
“The Summer at Falcone 2014” [Article] ITEA Journal, Vol. 41 No. 3 (summer 2014), Feature.

COMMISSIONING ACTIVITIES
Commissioner, Jamey Simmons “Under Tennessee Skies” for solo tuba 2020
Recorded on “Under Tennessee Skies” – Chris Combest, tuba Cimmaron Music Press.
Commissioner, Paul Osterfield “Nashville Nightlife” for tuba and percussion 2020
Recorded on “Under Tennessee Skies” – Chris Combest, tuba Cimmaron Music Press.
Commissioner, Brian Mueller “Becoming” for tuba and vibraphone 2020
Recorded on “Under Tennessee Skies” – Chris Combest, tuba Cimmaron Music Press.
Commissioner, Barbara York “Tennessee Journey” for tuba and piano 2020
Recorded on “Under Tennessee Skies” – Chris Combest, tuba Cimmaron Music Press.
Commissioner, Brad Baumgardner “Broken Echoes” for solo tuba 2020
Recorded on “Under Tennessee Skies” – Chris Combest, tuba Cimmaron Music Press.
Commissioner, Evan Zegiel “Synchronous Fireflies” for tuba, piano 2020
Recorded on “Under Tennessee Skies” – Chris Combest, tuba Cimmaron Music Press.
Commissioner, Ben Miles “Mutations” for tuba and electronic media 2019
Cimmaron Music Press.
Commissioner, Frank Gulino “Low Blow” for unaccompanied contrabass 2018
trombone or tuba. Cimmaron Music Press.
Commissioner, Ben McMillan “Tomes 3” for tuba and electronic media 2018
Cimmaron Music Press.
Commissioner, Frank Gulino “Onwards and Upwards” for tuba and piano 2017
Premiered: U.S. Army Band Tuba-Euphonium Workshop 2/2/2018 Cimarron Music Publishing
Commissioner, Rusty Banks, “Not a Gun” for tuba and electronic media 2015
Cimmaron Music Press. Commissioner, Tuba and Wind Ensemble Consortium 2015
Charles Booker, “Titan Concerto” for tuba and wind ensemble
Potenza Music Publishing
Commissioner, John Stevens “The Five Muses” Consortium 2014 Editions BiM
Commissioner, Potenza Consortium Project 2013
James Grant, “Three More Furies for Solo Tuba” Potenza Music Publishing
Commissioner, Potenza Consortium Project 2013
Ethan Wickman, “Three Visions of El Greco”
Concerto for Tuba and Wind Ensemble Potenza Music Publishing
Commissioner, Trio Consortium Project 2013
James Stephenson, “Vast and Curious” for horn, tuba and piano James Stephenson Music Publications
Commissioner, “Songs without Words” Project 2013
James Grant, “10 Blind Dates for Solo Tuba” Premiered: Midwest Tuba Euphonium Conference, Bloomington, IL Potenza Music Publishing Commissioner, Eric Guinivan, “PUSH” for Solo tuba and piano 2012
Holben Publishing Company
Commissioner, Composer Commission 2011
Rodney Newton, “From the Depths” for tuba and piano Premiered: International Tuba Euphonium Conference, Linz, Austria
Commissioner, Facebook Tuba Consortium Project 2008
James Meador, “Apocalyptic Voices” for tuba and piano
Meador Music Publications

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Awards

Awarded - Silver Medal for Outstanding Achievement by the Global Music Awards (2021)
Nominated - Roger Bobo Award for Excellence in Recording by the International Tuba Euphonium Association (2021)

Special Projects

"Under Tennessee Skies" - Solo CD recording (Released November 15, 2021) - Funded with support of an MTSU Faculty and Creative Activities Grant (FRCAC), this is an arts inclusive creative activity project entitled Under Tennessee Skies. The building blocks of this musical work involve the melding of performers and composers to create works inspired by the natural beauty, musical or cultura...

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"Under Tennessee Skies" - Solo CD recording (Released November 15, 2021) - Funded with support of an MTSU Faculty and Creative Activities Grant (FRCAC), this is an arts inclusive creative activity project entitled Under Tennessee Skies. The building blocks of this musical work involve the melding of performers and composers to create works inspired by the natural beauty, musical or cultural offerings from Tennessee in some way. The final product will include the creation of several new compositions by living composers, the presentation of recitals throughout Tennessee and finally, the recording and production of a compact disc of those new compositions.   By merging the performing arts with the creative art of musical composition, the benefits of this project become evident in the form of creating a final tangible artistic product that in turn adds new material to the repertory and instrumental recordings of the tuba. The process of creating new art from people inspired from “all that is Tennessee” will not only contribute to the enrichment of music making but will show how the various facets of creating art can come together to make one cohesive statement on the connectedness we should all strive to understand.

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