Arkansas Trombone Workshop

The Arkansas Trombone Workshop aims to celebrate everything trombone with workshops, master classes, performances, demonstrations and a high school solo competition. Featured performances will be held by the RAZORBONES, Dr. Cory Mixdorf (U of A trombone professor), and our guest artist. This year's guest artist is Los Angeles-based studio trombonist Alex Iles.

  • Audience: The event is geared for anyone who loves the trombone, but primarily high school students, students from other colleges and adults who wish to learn more about the trombone. The solo competition, however is open only to current juniors and seniors in high school who wish to be a music major in college.
  • Date: February 24, 2018
  • Times: 9:30 am – 7:30 pm
  • Location: Faulkner Performing Arts Center (FPAC)
    Free parking is readily available in the parking structure on Stadium Drive, just south of the FPAC.
  • Fee: $25 for early registration, before February 3 (pizza lunch is included for those who register on or before this date).
    $40 after February 3 and at the door.
  • High School Solo Competition: See bottom of page for details.
  • Register: Click here to register online and pay by credit card. Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover Coard are accepted.
      • Note: Registration may only be completed by individuals over the age of 18. If the participant is under 18, an adult must create an account, then add the participant's information.

Faculty Bios

Alex Iles

Trombonist Alex Iles enjoys a varied and successful career in many musical settings as an active member of the musically diverse Southern California freelance performing and recording community. Alex began his musical career while a student at UCLA, as a member of the Disneyland All American College Band. He studied trombone privately with Roy Main, Ralph Sauer, Byron Peebles and Per Brevig. Since graduating from UCLA, he has gone on to establish himself as a very in-demand trombonist/low brass performer and recording artist and educator.

Among the varied palette of artists with whom Alex has performed and/or recorded are: Joe Cocker, James Horner, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Alan Jackson, Zubin Mehta, Kid Cudi, The Tonight Show, Sir Neville Mariner,Hans Zimmer, Johnny Mathis, Lalo Shiffrin, Natalie Cole, Jeffery Kahane, Danny Elfman, Ray Charles, Trevor Rabin, Harry Connick Jr., Robbie Williams,Henry Mancini, Josh Grobin, John Zorn, Terence Blanchard, Barbra Streisand, John Williams, Fallout Boy, Thomas Ades, Neil Young, Johnny Mandel, Paul McCartney, and Prince.

Alex has toured as lead and solo jazz trombonist with Woody Herman and Maynard Ferguson. He has performed and recorded as a regular member of many of the top big bands and jazz groups in the Los Angeles area including Bob Florence’s Limited Edition, Tom Kubis Big Band and he was an original member of Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band.
He has performed on The Motion Picture Academy Awards, The Emmy Awards, Golden Globe Awards, The People's Choice Awards and hundreds of television series and motion picture soundtracks including “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” “Frozen,” “La La Land,” “Minions,” “Ted,” ”Pirates of the Caribbean,” “Up,” “The Incredibles," “X-Men,” “Secret Life of Pets,” “Avatar," “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” “LOST,” "Transformers," “Godzilla," “Toy Story,” and "Spiderman.”

Alex has played in the pit orchestras of numerous Los Angeles productions of Broadway shows including:
"The Lion King," "Phantom of the Opera," "Chicago," "West Side Story," "The Producers," and "Wicked." In the summer of 2001, Alex was one of sixteen trombonists from an international field chosen to participate in a 10 day orchestral/solo seminar hosted by New York Philharmonic Principal trombone virtuoso, Joe Alessi.

In October, 2002 Alex was appointed principal trombonist of the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra. He has also performed as alto, tenor and bass trombonist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, The Pasadena Symphony, and The LA Chamber Orchestra. In 2014, Alex became a regular member of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra.

Alex has been a faculty trombone and jazz instructor at the California Institute of the Arts, Azusa Pacific
College, and California State University, Northridge. He has appeared as a recitalist, guest soloist, and
clinician at the with schools and organizations throughout the United States, including Indiana University,
Oklahoma State University, The University of Southern California, Texas Christian University, and he has
appeared as a soloist and given master classes three times at the International Trombone Festival.

“The Trombone Concerto by Ferdinand David made for an effective vehicle for the orchestra’s distinguished principal, Alex Iles. Throughout the brief work, his playing displayed a beautiful, warm tone and an astonishing upper range, along with a sensitive musicality. At the conclusion, he and the orchestra favored us with an encore, a lovely, soulful rendition of ‘Danny Boy.’”—Long Beach Gazette

“Iles’s performance was magical….his added character seeming to enhance the piece all the way through. His encore of a stirring rendition of “Danny Boy” had everyone leaving for intermission with a smile. In short, Iles’s performance was charming, even endearing.”—Long Beach Signal Tribune



Dr. Cory Mixdorf is thrilled to be a part of the distinguished faculty at the University of Arkansas.  He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Northern Iowa as well as Master of Music and Doctor of Music degrees in trombone performance from Indiana University.

While maintaining a strong studio, Dr. Mixdorf sustains a regular schedule as a guest artist and clinician on the national and international levels. In addition to frequent solo recital tours, his most recent endeavors include: presenting at the 2016 International Trombone Festival at The Juilliard School, performing at the 2015 American Trombone Workshop, touring Germany and recording a CD with the brass ensemble, Eurobrass and traveling to the Universidade de Brasilia where he was invited to solo with the Trombones Sociedade Anônima and give a master class to the University's trombone students. Dr. Mixdorf was also fortunate to have been selected as a fellow in the 2011 Alessi Seminar in Tuscaloosa, AL.

Outside of his collegiate duties, Dr. Mixdorf enjoys performing with several area ensembles. He is the current Principal Trombonist of the Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra. Before coming to Arkansas, he served as the Acting Second Trombonist with the Chattanooga Symphony Orchestra and has also performed with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the Atlanta Ballet Orchestra, the Symphony Orchestra Augusta, the LaGrange Symphony Orchestra and the Georgia Brass Band, a group with which he recorded the album, A Christmas Festival.

While attending Indiana University, he held the positions of Principal and Second Trombone in the Columbus, IN Philharmonic from 2006-2009. Other orchestral experience includes performances with the New World Symphony in Miami, FL, the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, Richmond Symphony Orchestra and Evansville Philharmonic. He has appeared as a soloist with the Indiana University Symphonic Band where he performed Richard Peaslee's Arrows of Time. Dr. Mixdorf has also toured with the Mr. Jack Daniel's Silver Cornet Band.

Before his appointment at the University of Arkansas, Dr. Mixdorf served as Assistant Professor of Trombone at Georgia State University in Atlanta, GA, adjunct instructor of brass at Vincennes University, associate instructor at Indiana University, and adjunct instructor of trombone at St. Ambrose University.

His principal teachers include Peter Ellefson, M. Dee Stewart, Nancy Vogt, D. Paul Pollard, Bruce Tychinski, and Brad Edwards. Dr. Mixdorf is a Conn-Selmer Performing Artist.

When not playing trombone, Dr. Mixdorf spends every minute possible with his beloved wife Elizabeth and children, Miles, Madelyn, Mason, and Meyer.


9:30am Registration / Exhibits
10:00am Opening Recital (featuring Mr. Alex Iles and Dr. Cory Mixdorf)
10:30am Group Warmup (led by Dr. Mixdorf)
11:15am Teaching Masterclass (Mr. Iles)
12:30pm Lunch / Exhibits
1:30pm High School Solo Competition Final Round
2:15pm Group Trombone Ensemble
3:00pm Clinic: "The Life of a Studio Musician" (Mr. Iles)
4:30pm RAZORBONES Recital

Final Concert 
(featuring Mr. Iles, Dr. Mixdorf, and the RAZORBONES)


Open to current high school juniors and seniors who wish to major in music at the University of Arkansas

  • Finalist scholarship awards are as follows:
    • 1st place: $6,000/yr
    • 2nd place: $5,000/yr
    • 3rd place: $4,000/yr
    • For out-of-state finalists, scholarships include a minimum 70% out-of-state tuition waiver
    • Awards contingent upon:
      • Acceptance into the U of A
      • Maintained university GPA of 2.75
      • Faculty approval
      • Subject to Fayetteville Policies and Procedures 516.0
  • Repertoire
    • Tenor Trombonists
      • For All-State auditions, most regional states include at least one etude from the Melodious Etudes for Trombone book by Bordogni/Rochut (Carl Fischer Music, publisher). Using the most current edition of the book (which includes piano accompaniment pdfs), record one of your All-State etudes with piano. You can purchase the book at, item #086846.
    • Bass Trombonists                   
      • Etude #2 from Lew Gills’ 20 Etudes for Bass Trombone. The book is available at, item #001516. Record yourself performing this etude with this piano accompaniment.
  • Submission Requirements:
    • Submissions must include live piano accompaniment
    • Submissions must be in MP3 format and less than 10MB
    • Email submissions to Dr. Cory Mixdorf ( on or before February 3, 2018.