Nicole Allen is excited to be back on the Festival South team this year. Nicole received her Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Mississippi, her Master's in Music Education from USM, and is a Nationally Board Certified Teacher. She is in her 11th year of teaching and in her 7th year as Director of Bands at Purvis High School. Nicole is immediate past president of the Southeast Mississippi Band Directors' Association and a past president of the Mississippi Women Band Directors' Association. She was named SEMBDA High School Band Director of the year for the 2015-2016 school year and was also the Mississippi recipient of School Band and Orchestra Magazine's 2015 "50 Directors Who Make a Difference" award. She was on the staff of the Lions All-State Band in 2008, 2014, 2015 and is looking forward to being the Assistant Concert Director this summer when the band travels to Japan to compete for their 32nd International Championship. As a member of the American School Band Directors' Association, Nicole is heading the committee to start the first Middle School All-State Band in Mississippi. Her bands consistently receive superior ratings at State Evaluations and other area festivals and competitions. This fall the Pride of Purvis Marching Band won the Bronze Medal in Class 4A at State Championships along with 2nd place finishes in Music Performance, Visual Performance, and Color Guard.
SARAH BERRY PIERCE
Event Support Staff
Sarah Berry Pierce is a 10th Grade Student at Sacred Heart High School in Hattiesburg. Sarah Berry began acting at age 5 and appeared in 23 productions before discovering that her true passion lay in Stage Management. Most recently seen as Stage Manager for HCLO’s Into the Woods, She is thrilled to make her Festival South debut as Assistant Stage Manager for Hub City Player’s Rock of Ages. When not in the theatre, Sarah Berry can be found competing in Lincoln-Douglas and Congressional Debate, as well as competing as an award winning attorney on the Sacred Heart Mock Trial team. She is also an active Volunteer and has earned the Gold Level Presidential Volunteer Service Award on three occasions. She looks forward to working with the team of Festival South and to welcoming the community to our slate of fantastic events.
Event Support Staff
Seth Read is a Vocal Performance Major. He graduated high school in 2010, and began his college years at Meridian Community College where he earned his AA degree. He is currently pursuing a BM at the University of Southern Mississippi. Over the course of fourteen years, he has learned multiple instruments and had the opportunity to perform at a variety of venues. At the age of 10, he began playing the trombone which lasted through the entirety of his middle and high school years. One year later, he decided to take up piano as a secondary instrument and still continues to play to this day. Seth teaches piano for beginners, and also takes from Dr. Ellen Elder at USM. Since the age of five, Seth has always had a love for singing, but was never taken seriously until he arrived at his community college where he began lessons with two sister instructors, Tammy Miles and Twyla Hurst. To this day, Seth takes from Dr. Maryanne Kyle, who is known as one of the finest vocal coaches of belt, legit and classical vocal technique. Over the course of his college years, he has performed in multiple musical theater productions and one opera. He played Sir Danvers in Jekyll and Hyde, Stromboli in My Son Pinocchio, and Tony in West Side Story, just to name a few. He has had the privilege to work alongside some amazing orchestral conductors and directors, namely Dr. Michael Miles and Dr. Jay Dean. Seth is a member of Phi Theta Kappa and the Honor Society at USM, and has been awarded multiple scholarships toward his major in vocal performance. He is thrilled to be a part of Festival South this year, and looks forward to being a part of such an amazing team.
Event Support Staff
Perry Forstall is from New Orleans Louisiana. He received the rank of Eagle Scout in 2012. He graduate NOCCA and Holy Cross in 2013. He is now in his third year at USM. He is a Music Education Major. He has played his tuba all over the United States. He also performed in Ireland in the St. Patrick's day parade in 2015. He is the hall manager of the Mannoni Performing Arts Center. This is his second year working for Festival South.
Roberto Pineda began studying the double bass at age 14 at the Victoriano Lopez Music School; where he won a silver medal at the Victoriano Lopez solo competition in 1997. In 1999 he was offered a music scholarship at the University of Southern Mississippi (USM), where he obtained a master’s degree in music performance and a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering technology. He has shared the stage with Itzhak Perlman, Yo-Yo Ma, Plácido Domingo, Edgar Meyer and other great artists. Mr. Pineda has performed as section double bass at the Honduras National Symphony, Gulf Coast Symphony, Mobile Symphony and others. He has performed in master classes for renowned bass players such as Francois Rabbath, Frank Proto and Paul Ellison. Mr. Pineda is currently working on his doctorate in double bass performance with Dr. Marcos Machado at USM and has performed the double bass at the Northern Lights Music Festival in Minnesota for the last four years.