Board of Directors
Jose Saavedra Diaz
Aaron has served as Managing Director and Board Member for the Bradetich Foundation since its founding in 2008; coordinating world-wide partnerships and strategic funding through donor relations. From 2008 - 2012, Aaron ran a small publishing company dedicated to small artists while synchronously assisting Jeff’s work. Since then he has volunteered during summer camps, assisted with conferences, worked at competitions, and continued donor relations work.
Aaron received his Bachelor's degree from the University of North Texas in music, mathematics, and psychology. In 2018 he completed a Masters degree in Clinical psychology from Emporia State University. Aaron is a doctoral candidate at the University of North Texas studying Educational Psychology with an emphasis in Research, Measurement, and Statistics and is the Director of Assessment for Student Affairs at Texas Woman’s University. Select publications here:
Doerfler, S. M., Tajmirriyahi, M., Dhaliwal, A., Bradetich, A. J., Ickes, W., & Levine, D. S. (2021). Dark triad traits predict risky decision-making in response to message framing of COVID-19. International Journal of Psychology, Special Issue.
Persinger, J., & Bradetich, A. J. (2018). Technical characteristics of a proposed GLSEN school climate training outcomes survey. Gay, Lesbian, & Straight Education Network, New York, NY.
Bradetich, A. J., Alejo, D. A., Hull, D., & Näslund-Hadley, E. I. (2022). Analysis of population-level vocabulary data: An IRT primer for k-12 education. International Development Bank, Washington D.C.
Artem Chirkov is the principal double bassist of the St. Petersburg Philharmonic orchestra, teacher of the double bass at the State Music School in St. Petersburg, part time professor of the double bass at the National University of Arts in St. Petersburg, President of the Russian Double Bass Society, and head of the Annual Double Bass International festival "Double Bass World" since 2011.
Artem was born in St. Petersburg, Russia. He began to play cello at the Special Music Lyceum in the St. Petersburg Conservatory. At the age of 16 he started to learn double bass, and continued his study at the St. Petersburg Conservatory under the instruction of Aleksander Shilo and Riza Gimaletdonov.
Artem continued his postgraduate studies at the “Hochschule fur Music und Theater” in Munich, Germany with Professor Klaus Trumpf. He was the first prize winner of the international competition “Virtuosi 2000" in St. Petersburg, the International Competition of Toliatti in Russia, the international double bass competition “J.M Sperger” Michaelstein in Germany, the International Double Bass Competition in Brno, Czech Republic, the second prize winner of the International Double Bass Competition of the International Society of Bass, and was the first prize winner of the inaugural Bradetich Foundation International Double Bass Solo Competition.
Artem has taught master classes and performed as a soloist all over the world. He has also performed with many orchestras worldwide, including the Brno Philharmonic Orchestra, the Prague Chamber Orchestra, the Swerin Chamber Orchestra, the Viana do Castelo Festival Orchestra, the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, the Belgard Philharmonic Orchestra, and the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra.
Artem has also been a member of the famous Bassiona Amorosa since 2001, with which he won the ECHO-music recording award in October 2014. He has recorded over 10 CDs with Bassiona Amorosa and 4CDs of his own solo performance with chamber music and symphony orchestra. Artem debuted in recital at Carnegie Hall in December of 2011, at the St. Petersburg Philharmonic in April 2012, at the Munich Philharmonic in October 2014, and at the Berlin Philharmonic in March 2016.
Brian Perry is the newest member of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra double bass section. Prior to his appointment in 2013, he was a member of the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra for nine seasons. He has appeared with the Minnesota Orchestra, National Symphony and Cleveland Orchestra, and often performs with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood. An active collaborator, Perry is a frequent guest artist with pianist Buddy Bray for the Cliburn Foundation’s Musical Awakenings educational concert series, and has performed locally on the Spectrum Chamber Music, Fine Arts Chamber Players, and Cliburn at the Modern series. Additionally, he has appeared as guest artist with the Vermeer String Quartet and pianist Natalie Zhu on the Bay Chamber Concerts series in Rockport, Maine.
In recent seasons, Brian has served as the bassist in Miguel Harth-Bedoya’s Caminos del Inka ensemble, and as a member of the Funkytown All-Stars, an all double-bass quartet based in Fort Worth. Always keeping his eyes open for new repertoire for the double bass, He performed his transcription of William Bolcom’s Graceful Ghost Rag for the composer himself in an all-Bolcom program at the Modern Art Museum in Fort Worth in 2010.
Brian earned his music degrees from Boston University and the University of North Texas. His principal teachers included Larry Moore, Jeff Bradetich, and Edwin Barker. He is currently adjunct lecturer of double bass at the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. He also serves as a board member for the International Society of Bassists and the Bradetich Foundation, an organization dedicated to promoting the double bass as a solo instrument. Committed to educating and mentoring young bassists, he has adjudicated and presented masterclasses for both the 2015 ISB convention and the TCU Bass Fest and, since 2010, has been the double bass instructor at the highly acclaimed Boston University Tanglewood Institute in Lenox, Massachusetts, one of the nation’s premier summer orchestral training programs for high school students.
Dr. Jack Unzicker is the Assistant Professor of Double Bass at the University of Texas at Arlington and is a sought-after performer and educator. He has extensive and varied experience in all performance areas, from early music to contemporary, solo, chamber, and orchestral, as well as jazz and electric bass.
As a pedagogue, Dr. Unzicker has been featured in articles on playing and teaching the double bass in The Strad, Bass World, American String Teacher, and Strings Magazine and frequently performs, adjudicates, and presents at the International Society of Bassists, American String Teachers Association, and Texas Music Educators Association Conventions.
Current and former students of Dr. Unzicker have been accepted to undergraduate, graduate, and summer programs at the Colburn School, Juilliard School, University of Southern California, Boston University, Indiana University, University of North Texas, Florida State University, North Carolina School of the Arts, New World Symphony, Curtis Institute of Music Summerfest, Aspen Music Festival and School, National Orchestral Institute, National Repertory Orchestra, Interlochen Arts Camp, and the WaBass Institute.
As an orchestral musician, Dr. Unzicker has performed with the Artosphere Festival Orchestra, Dallas Opera, Dallas Symphony, Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, and as principal of the AIMS Festival Orchestra (Austria), Dallas Chamber Symphony, Orquesta Divertimento (Costa Rica), and many others. He has worked extensively with conductor Miguel Harth-Bedoya, as well as Jaap Van Zweden, Otto Werner-Mueller, Larry Rachleff, Rossen Milanov, James Conlon, Anshel Brusilow, and Gunther Schuller.
Upcoming projects include a recording of an ongoing duo project, in collaboration with Dr. Martha Walvoord, UT Arlington violin professor, and contemporary composers to commission, perform, and record new works for violin and double bass.
Tammy Jo Leonard
Tammy Jo Leonard has been working in the music industry for almost 25 years. The last 17 years she has spent in the double bass world, working with top musicians to promote the instrument. Tammy Jo has dedicated much of her life to working and volunteering for many non-profit organizations that raise money so students can own an instrument, take lessons, or attend a music camp to help fulfill their love and passion for music.