Next engagement

Tuesday, Feb. 20
Echo Ridge


Our new Musical Director

As of January, 2018 Barry Robertson assumed the responsibilities of Musical Director of the Tennessee Valley Ensemble as Sandy Wells, Musical Director for the past 15 years, is taking a leave of absence.  Barry holds a B.S. in Music Education from the University of Tennessee and has studied choral and instrumental conducting, jazz bass and trombone with a variety of renowned experts. He is the recipient of an Edward H. Hamilton Choral Conducting Scholarship and is past director of the Central Baptist Church - Bearden Wind Ensemble as well as a charter member of the Knoxville Handel Society. He has participated as a member of many musical groups, including the Oak Ridge Community Band. And if that isn’t enough, he’s also a registered piano technician with the Piano Technicians Guild! TVE is excited to welcome Barry as our new director and look forward to his direction. For more information about the Tennessee Valley Ensemble, please visit or contact band secretary Melissa McCoy at





Our mission statement

The purpose of the Tennessee Valley Ensemble (“TVE”) is dually focused on community service and a relaxed community band culture.

It is important that the band perform concerts to benefit the people of Knoxville and its surrounding communities by playing venues where the public can attend (parks, theaters, festivals, etc.) and where people are in need (veterans’ hospitals, nursing homes, etc.). Since our beginning, the band has made one of our priorities providing music to those who have difficulty in reaching public venues. We accept donations for our concerts; however, we do not ask for nor require payment.

Equally as important is the band “culture”. TVE maintains a welcoming, friendly atmosphere where musicians of all levels can play without the stress of politics, organizational/leadership problems or fear of retribution. Skilled players should feel satisfied, and we look to them for advice and mentoring. Less skilled players should feel comfortable to play out and improve their skills. Area musicians should be interested in joining. This can only be accomplished in a cohesive group free of major disagreements with firm yet supportive leadership. This relaxed band culture ultimately translates to a better community band for the public.

This is not a paid professional organization, yet it should provide good quality, appealing music. In short, it should be enjoyable and satisfying for all involved, whether performing or listening.

We play concert band music that ranges from light classical to light pop. If you would like to get more information about booking a concert, click on the Contact tab above. If you are interested in playing with us, check out the Rehearsal and Contact tabs above.


History of the band

The band was originally established in the fall of 1994 as the Pellissippi State Technical Community College Band under the dual direction of Chris Jenkins and Anne-Marie Begley. The band grew quickly and began playing free concerts for nursing homes, assisted living centers, senior centers, church socials, store openings, Pellissippi events and other special events. Shortly after Chris Jenkins left the band after a few years, Anne-Marie took over as sole musical director and we changed our name to the Farragut Pops Ensemble. Anne-Marie was followed as director for two years by one of our flutists, McCall Bohanan. Under Anne-Marie and McCall, the town of Farragut sponsored our efforts, so that we also performed at various Town of Farragut events such as the RiverFest Concerts, Farragut Days, and A Taste of Farragut, as well as Kroger-sponsored events in stores and miscellaneous area community events. 

In 2006, the Town of Farragut cut their budget and discontinued our band sponsorship. Nevertheless, this did not deter us from continuing our musical passion and mission. We decided to change our name yet again, and settled on “Tennessee Valley Ensemble” to reflect our size, musical style and the larger area community we serve. Since then, we have played under the direction of Sandy Wells who was persuaded to lay aside her French horn in order to conduct us. 

And in 2008, we thought we had better have a website!

We continue to provide free performances to those isolated populations who cannot reach musical events as well as create other public performance venues. For example, during the summer of 2010, trumpet Cynthia Crosby-Myers came up with a performance idea we called “Practice in the Park” where we moved many of our summer rehearsals to the gazebo at West Hills Park and delivered a rehearsal/performance session for the passersby during our evening rehearsal times.


Webmaster: Gabriel Jacobs