Senior Master Sgt. Jay Heltzer is the bass trombonist with the Concert Band, The United States Air Force Band, Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling, Washington, D.C. Originally from Sherman Oaks, California, his Air Force career began in 2004.
Heltzer received a Bachelor of Music degree in trombone performance from Cal State University Northridge in 1994. Upon graduation, he was unanimously nominated by the faculty as the Most Outstanding Baccalaureate Candidate. He then attended Indiana University where he earned a Master of Music degree in trombone performance in 1998. Heltzer has performed with the National Symphony Orchestra, Washington Opera, Annapolis Symphony, the Milwaukee Symphony, Milwaukee Ballet, Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Civic Orchestra of Chicago.
While in the Chicago area, Heltzer was also a private music teacher at several high schools and was an adjunct faculty member at Harper College in Palatine, Illinois. He was the first trombonist ever awarded a scholarship by the Union League Civic Arts Foundation in their annual solo competition and was the winner of solo competitions of the Women's League of the Glendale Symphony, the Round Top Music Festival and the Cal State Northridge's Concerto Competition. His former teachers include Ed Anderson, Bill Booth, Floyd Cooley, Jeff Reynolds, Phil Teele, and Charles Vernon.
Air Force career highlights include two Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parades, the dedications of the Air Force Memorial and the Pentagon 9/11 Memorial, White House arrival of Queen Elizabeth, performing at a POW/MIA Remembrance Ceremony, and representing The U.S. Air Force Band at several brass workshops as a featured performer.