2015 GUEST CLINICIANS/CONDUCTORS
Festival Wind Ensemble
Professor Steven Davis, Director of Bands
University of Missouri at Kansas City, Conservatory of Music, Kansas City, MO
Steven D. Davis serves as Director of Bands and Wind Ensembles, Professor of Conducting, Conservatory large ensembles chair, opera conducting faculty, and conductor of the Conservatory Wind Symphony at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance. He coordinates the graduate program in wind ensemble conducting and oversees all aspects of the UMKC band program. Davis is the founding director of the UMKC Wind Band Teaching Symposium, one of country’s largest conducting workshops. He is conductor of the Youth Symphony of Kansas City’s Symphony Orchestra and newEar, Kansas City’s professional contemporary chamber ensemble. Davis has served as a conductor at the CBDNA National Convention, Midwest Clinic, NAfME National Convention and the Festival of New American Music. He has also conducted numerous summers at the Interlochen Summer Arts Camp. As a committed advocate for music education, he has been a guest conductor and teacher at state conferences, and honor band and orchestra festivals in 37 states. He has appeared as a guest artist at the most significant conservatories in Bangkok and Chang Mai, Thailand; Lisbon, Portugal; and Beijing, China. Davis has been invited for residencies and conducting symposiums at major institutions such as the Eastman School of Music, Ithaca College, Michigan State University, University of Colorado, University of Georgia and Florida State University, among others. Davis is fervently committed to performing new repertoire, and has been praised by prominent contemporary composers including Leslie Bassett, Robert Beaser, Michael Colgrass, John Corigliano, Michael Daugherty, Osvaldo Golijov, Stephen Hartke, David Lang, Zhou Long, James Mobberley, Narong Prangcharoen, Bernard Rands, Paul Rudy, Steven Stucky, Frank Ticheli, and Chen Yi. He has received dedications for over 30 commissioned works. Davis is an elected member of the American Bandmasters Association and currently serves as the College Band Directors National Association Southwest Division president. At UMKC, he has been awarded the Muriel McBrien Kauffman Artistry and Scholarship Award. In 2014, Davis will lead the UMKC Conservatory Wind Symphony as a featured ensemble at the Beijing Modern Music Festival and the Tianjin May Festival.
T. Andre Feagin, Doctoral Conducting Associate
University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
T. Andre’ Feagin is currently a doctoral conducting associate of wind band studies at The University of Arizona where his duties include guest conducting the University of Arizona Wind Ensemble and Wind Symphony, conductor of the Symphonic Band and serving as coordinator of the University of Arizona Honor Band Festival. Prior to his arrival at the University of Arizona, he served as assistant professor of music and associate director of bands at the University of Texas at El Paso. As a champion of new music, Feagin has been involved in the commissioning of new works by noted composers as Carl Holmquist, David Peoples, Dominic Dousa and Craig Thomas Naylor. He continues to be in high demand as a guest conductor and travels regularly as a clinician of regional and All-State bands throughout the United States and Canada. He has presented clinics on music education and conducting at local, regional and national forums. In addition, he is a published contributing author in the Teaching Music Through Performance in Band series and has contributed to the Instrumentalist magazine. Feagin has appeared as a guest conductor with the United States Military Academy Band at West point and the United States Air Force Band of Mid-America with the West Point Conducting Workshop and Young Conductors Mentor Project, respectively. A Golden Apple Teacher Award recipient, he also served as director of bands at Watkins Overton High School in Memphis, TN where his ensembles were a consistent Tennessee Music Educators Association Sweepstakes Award recipient. In 2011 he was honored by the Mayor and City Council of El Paso, Texas with the declaration of November 1st as T. André Feagin Day. Feagin holds the Master of Music degree in instrumental wind conducting from the Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music at the University of Memphis and a Bachelor of Music degree in clarinet performance. His conducting mentors include Gregg I. Hanson, Eugene Migliaro Corporon and Kraig A. Williams. He has studied clarinet with James Gholsen, Denise Gainey and Steven Cohen. Feagin has taught the Memphis Sound, The Academy, Carolina Crown and Santa Clara Vanguard Drum and Bugle Corps in capacities ranging from brass caption head to executive director. He is a former conductor of the Phantom Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps (1998-2001), recipient of the DCI Jim Jones Leadership Award (2000), and the Division III Director of the Year (2007). Currently, his concert and marching arrangements as well as drill designs can be seen throughout the United States by some of the nations finest drum corps, high school and collegiate ensembles. Feagin’s professional memberships include the National Association for Music Education, College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA) and honorary membership in Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.
Dr. Nicole Gross, Director of Athletic Bands
Indiana State University, Terre Haute, IN
Dr. Nicole Gross is the Director of Athletic Bands at Indiana State University where she is responsible for directing the Marching Sycamores, The Pride of Indiana, the Indiana State Sycamore “Blue Thunder” Basketball Pep Band, and the University Concert Band. Her teaching duties include marching band procedures and courses within the music history elective curriculum. Dr. Gross served on the faculty of the University of Dayton as the Director of the University of Dayton Marching Band and Concert Band. Prior to Dayton, she served on the band faculty at West Virginia University where she was the Assistant Director of the Pride of West Virginia Marching Band, the WVU Pep Band, and was a guest conductor with the various University concert ensembles. As a public school band director she instructed instrumental music for seven years in southwestern Virginia. Dr. Gross is an active guest conductor, adjudicator and drill writer in the mid-Atlantic region. She has been a staff member with Mid-Atlantic Band Front Camp from Richmond, VA since 1992 and has served as the head instructor in the drum major area since 1998. Dr. Gross has recently completed doctoral studies in conducting at the University of South Carolina where she was a student of Scott Weiss. While at South Carolina she served as a graduate assistant with the band program including the Mighty Sound of the Southeast, the Carolina Band and Concocktion basketball pep band. Dr. Gross received her bachelor’s degree in music education and master’s of music degree in conducting from West Virginia University where she studied with Don Wilcox, Larry Christianson, and John Hendricks.
Dr. Brian Sproul, Director of Athletic Bands
University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT
Dr. Brian Sproul is the Director of Athletic Bands at the University of Utah, where he directs the marching band, pep bands and the symphonic band. Prior to his appointment at Utah he was the Assistant Director of Bands at Clemson University in South Carolina. At Clemson, he was the Director of the Jazz Band, Assistant Director of Tiger Band, and Conductor of the Concert Band. He has previously served on the faculty at the University of Utah in 2001, where he was the Assistant Director of Bands and the Director of the Marching Band. While at the University of Utah, he also served as one of the directors of the Salt Lake 2002 Olympic Spirit Band. The Olympic Spirit Band performed at many of the venues during the games as well as the Opening and Closing Ceremonies. Dr. Sproul holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Wind Conducting from the University of Alabama. While at Alabama, he served on the staff with the University Bands programs and performed as principal bass trombonist of the Huxford Symphony Orchestra and the Alabama Wind Ensemble. He has also performed professionally on piano, organ and tuba. Prior to attending Alabama, he taught high school band in metro-Atlanta. He also holds degrees from the University of Georgia and the University of Utah. He has membership in College Band Directors National Association and affiliations Phi Mu Alpha National Music Fraternity.
Dr. David W. Vandewalker, Assistant Director of Bands
Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA
As a veteran conductor and music educator, David W. Vandewalker is nationally recognized for his passionate pursuit of artistry; he is dedicated to establishing and maintaining a high standard of excellence in performance musicality, the modern wind band clarity of sound, and developing well-prepared future educators. Dr. Vandewalker, a third generation band director, received a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Baylor University, earned his Master of Arts in Education degree from Central Michigan University and a Doctor of Musical Arts from Boston University. He is the assistant director of bands at Georgia State University, where his primary responsibilities include conducting the University Band, teaching the Marching Band and directing the Basketball Pep Band. He is also the music director and conductor of the Metro Atlanta Youth Wind Ensemble (MAYWE), hosted at Georgia State University. Prior to his appointment at GSU, Dr. Vandewalker taught for 23 years in both middle and high school settings in Texas and Georgia. As a recipient of the Sousa Foundation’s “Sudler Flag of Honor,” the Harrison Band (GA) program, under his leadership, was distinguished as one of the strongest, respected, and well-rounded band programs in the United States. As a recognized mentor for student teachers and new teachers in a team-teaching environment for over a decade, Dr. Vanderwalker enjoys the opportunity to guide young educators in honing their skills and knowledge in wind conducting, literature, design, arranging, leadership, booster management, wind band pedagogy and ensemble skills. David W. Vandewalker is a nine-time recipient of the National Band Association’s prestigious Citation of Excellence Award, a three-time recipient of National Wind Band Honors Awards in the New Music category, and is recognized in multiple editions of Who’s Who Among American Teachers. He has served Cobb County and the Georgia State Board of Education as a lead curriculum writer for band as well as GMEA as chair for the State Music Selection Committee for Band. Additionally, he is a previously nationally elected high school representative on the board of directors for the National Band Association; presently, he serves as a member at large on the NBA Board of Directors, the Sudler Flag of Honor Selection Committee for the Sousa Foundation, and the advisory board of the National Brass Symposium. As a conductor, Dr. Vandewalker has led highly acclaimed concerts before the Midwest Clinic (two times), the Music for All National Concert Band Festival (three times), and the Georgia Music Educators Association (two times) and the College Band Directors Association/National Band Association Southern Division Conference. Performances under his direction have won the praise of such notable composers/conductors as Steven Bryant, John Mackey, Scott McAllister, Richard Clary, Ray Cramer, Michael Haithcock, Stephen Peterson, Kevin Sedatole and John Whitwell. The Harrison Marching Band-under Dr. Vandewalker’s leadership as artistic director and director of bands-was a 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010 and 2011 Bands of America Regional AAA Champion, a Grand Nationals Finalist, performed in the 2007 St. Patrick’s Day Parade (Dublin, Ireland) and the 2009 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The marching band also participated in Hollywood productions Drumline and Radio. Dr. Vandewalker is the author of Boosters to the Rescue, 101 Ways to Harmonize the Madness for Music Educators, Foundations for Wind Band Clarity, Foundations for Wind Band Clarity Instructional DVD, and Everyday Stuff Every Director Needs to Know: A Quick Start Guide published by Vision Publications. He is a highly sought staff development clinician frequently presenting at the Midwest Clinic, Georgia Music Education Association In-Service Conference, Texas Bandmaster Association Conference, Music For All Summer Symposium, Smith Walbridge Marching Band Directors Workshop, various state and regional conferences, and graduate seminar lecturer series throughout the southeastern United States. He is affiliated with professional organizations that include the National Band Association, Phi Beta Mu, College Band Directors National Association, World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles, National Association for Music Education, Texas Bandmasters Association, and Georgia Music Educators Association. Dr. Vandewalker and his wife, Pamela, reside in Marietta, Ga. where she is Minister of Worship Programming and Creativity at Johnson Ferry Baptist Church.
2015 GUEST ENSEMBLES
Adairsville High School Symphonic Band, Adairsville, Georgia
Dr. Kerry Bryant, Director
East Coweta High School Wind Ensemble, Sharpsburg, Georgia
Robert Owens, Director
East Hall High School Wind Symphony, Gainesville, Georgia
J. Craig Cantrell, Director
Spain Park High School Symphonic Band, Hoover, Alabama
Chris Neugent, Director