Brian Lukkasson Upper School instrumental music

Brian Lukkasson is the Upper School instrumental music director. He loves coffee, running, baseball and jazz and knows a lot about princesses.  

Q: What is the most surprising thing about you?
A: I’ve run nine marathons (soon to be 10) including the Boston Marathon and average 30 miles of running a week. 

Q: What are your three favorite smells?
A: Coffee, campfires and a baseball game (that’s a smell right?)

Q: What is the first thing you think of when you wake up in the morning?
A: Coffee and then going for a run. Sometimes in reverse order. 

Q: What is something you learned in the last week? 
A: I have two young daughters (5 ½ and 1 ½) and I learn something new about princesses every day. They have become integral members of our family. I can probably sing all their songs too!

Q: If you could visit any place in the world, where would you choose to go and why?
A: I would go back to Cuba. I recently visited Havana and fell in love with the music, culture, people and cars. I can’t wait to return and spend more time learning from the amazing musicians and artists and traveling to other areas throughout Cuba.

Q: What’s the best concert you’ve ever been to?
A: This is tough to pick just one because I really value and see a lot of live music. If I have to pick one it might be Stevie Wonder when he performed the entire Song in the Key of Life album from start to finish. The man is a genius, music legend and inspiring human. Ask me again and I’ll have another answer.

Q: What's your favorite family tradition?
A: Twins games! My parents took me and my sister to lots of games growing up (including being outside the Metrodome during game seven of the 1991 World Series). We’ve continued this with our family and get to about 20 games a season. Our oldest daughter was 4 months old for her first game. Win Twins!

Q: What did you want to be when you were small?
A: I was probably 5 when I decided I wanted to be an ice cream truck driver in the summer and then work at an ice skating rink in the winter. This dream was quickly shattered when I remembered that I didn't know how to tie laces yet and therefore couldn't help kids with their skates. 

Q: Do you collect anything?
A: Records (LPs). I like to find rare first edition jazz albums. I'm not one of those people who doesn't listen to them though. I love the sound, process and experience of listening to vinyl records.

Q: If you could have an endless supply of any food, what would you get?
A: Guacamole or just avocados. I would also want the endless supply of avocados to always be ripe when I want to eat/use them.

Listen to this episode of the podcast "Band in Minnesota" to hear Brian and his former colleague Nora Tycast discuss making purposeful music programming decisions to include underrepresented composers and missing narratives in the classroom.