Olathe East Band Staff
Jeff Smikahl- Director of Bands
Jeff Smikahl took over as the Director of Bands at Olathe East High School in 2010 after serving as the Associate Director of Bands for the previous 11 years. His current teaching duties includes teaching the Wind Ensemble, Advanced Percussion Ensemble Class, the Nighthawks Jazz Band, the Drumline Class, the Freshmen Percussion Class, and the Jazz Combo Class. He also co-teaches the Orange and Blue Brigade and Concert Band with Associate Director of Bands Jennifer Creek. Under his direction the Olathe East Band program has experienced wonderful success in all areas of the band program.
The concert band programs at Olathe East were the first ever high school band to hold their own concert at the beautiful Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City in 2015. They have also performed at Symphony Center in Chicago, home to the Chicago Symphony and Avery-Fischer Hall at Lincoln Center in New York City with guest conductor Eric Whitacre.
In 2016 and 2017 the Nighthawks Jazz Band was selected as runner-up at the KCCC Jazz Summit Basically Basie competition. They have consistently earned Outstand Band and One ratings at area jazz festivals for many years.
The marching band program has won 5 Grand Championships and numerous caption awards in the last 5 years at regional marching competitions. They were also the first band from Olathe to ever compete in the highly competitive Bands of America Super Regional in St. Louis.
The percussion program has received recognition as one of the top percussion programs in the nation, earning numerous State and Regional honors for both the marching and concert ensembles and performers. In 2016 the Percussion Ensemble was selected to perform at the Bands of America Sandy Feldstein National Percussion Festival in Indianapolis. The Percussion Ensemble has also performed at KMEA twice and the Kansas Day of Percussion twice.
Mr. Smikahl holds a Bachelor of Music Education and a Master of Music Education from the University of Kansas. Mr. Smikahl has performed with several regional ensembles including the Kansas City Civic Orchestra, the Overland Park Symphony, and the Topeka Symphony.
Mr. Smikahl currently resides in Olathe with his wife Tracy, his daughters Isabel and Teagan and their puggle Peanut. Mr. Smikahl is an artist/endorser for Innovative Percussion
Jennifer Creek- Assistant Director of Bands
Jennifer Creek took over as the Assistant Director of Bands at Olathe East in 2010. Prior to arrival at East she joined us from Frontier Trail Junior High School where she was Director of Bands for five years. Her current teaching dutites at East include teaching the Symphonic Band, the Orange and Blue Brigade, the Concert Band. In addition to her duties at the high school she also teaches beginning band at several East area elementary schools and assits at California Trail and Pioneer Trail middle schools. She is a graduate of Shawnee Mission East High School and received her Bachelor and Masters of Music Education at the University of Kansas. She lives in Roeland Park with her husband Cal, their daughter Layne, their son Charlie and dog Hudson.
Brandon Graves- Percussion Instructor
Kimberlyn Angelo- Percussion Instructor