In this newsletter:
– Summer Music Clinic, Band Day news, Summer Concert Band
– Alumni Interview: Second-Year Teacher
– Ideas from the Podium
– Spring Showcase Preview
– Mystery Tune
– Faculty Activity
(To view PDF, visit “Newsletter” in top menu, Volume 37.2)
IU Summer Music Clinic, June 12-18, 2022
The IU Summer Music Clinic, Jason Nam, Director, will take place June 12-18, 2022. Hundreds of talented students from all over the nation will converge on the Bloomington campus to participate in outstanding instrumental ensembles for a week of music making. Band or orchestra students who have completed 8th grade through 12th grade are eligible for the music clinic. Each year many high school graduates attend the camp prior to going off to college. Students will be housed in air-conditioned dormitories near the Jacobs School of Music. For more information about the IUSMC and to register online, interested students and teachers can visit the website HERE.
IU Band Day: Saturday, Sept. 10, IU vs. Idaho
High School Band Day is an annual event that brings high school bands from across the state of Indiana on the field during halftime for a joint show with the Marching Hundred.
Register HERE for Band Day! Repertoire information is HERE.
SUMMER CONCERT BAND is back!
June 29 and July 6 on the Musical Arts Center Lawn
The Indiana University Summer Concert Band will return for a 2-concert outdoor season in 2022. This very popular group attracts hundreds of people to its concerts and features a number of faculty and outstanding student soloists. The band performs a variety of works, including light concert overtures, marches, Broadway tunes, and movie music. One of the major instrumental ensembles in the summer, it is a full symphonic band, attracting some of the finest wind and percussion students in the Jacobs School of Music.
Did you know that Jordan Avenue has a new name? It is now Eagleson Avenue. The new street name was recommended by a specially convened task force. It honors the Eagleson family, a prominent Black family in Bloomington for four generations whose members have made significant contributions to the city, university, state, and nation, starting with Halson Vashon Eagleson I (1851-1921), born into slavery who came to Bloomington in the 1880s. He had six children who attended Indiana University. One of the children, Halson V. Eagleson, Jr. (1903-1992) was an IU student and leader of the IU marching band in approximately 1923 and went on to chair the Physics Department at Howard University. To learn more, visit https://bloomington.in.gov/news/2022/01/31/5092.
We traditionally close a section of Eagleson Avenue just before the concert in order to minimize traffic noise and enjoy the concert. The nearby parking lot is still accessible while the street is closed. We hope to see you there!
The First Two Years of Teaching, with Adam Dostalik
Adam Dostalik is in his second year as Associate Director of Bands at Whiteland Community High School in Whiteland, Indiana. Hailing from Des Moines, Iowa, Adam graduated from Johnston High School in 2016 and went on to earn a Bachelor’s degree in Instrumental Music Education with a minor in Wind Conducting from Indiana University.
JN: Can you describe the features and makeup of the current program in which you teach?
AD: The WCHS Band Department is comprised of approximately 180 students who perform in three concert bands, three jazz bands, an open class A marching band, a percussion class, and a dance/guard class. All three of our concert bands and our advanced jazz ensemble are co-taught with Peter Sampson, Director of Bands, which allows us to split up rehearsals and reach as many kids with specific feedback as possible. I am also in charge of our school’s AP Music Theory class and the “White Noise” show choir band, which plays for our two varsity show choirs, “Expressions” and “Rhythm Masters”. We also offer a music history class and an introductory music theory class taught by other members of the department.
JN: What lessons have you learned/challenges faced, either personally or professionally, so far?
AD: I think the most challenging obstacle I have faced in the first couple of years of teaching—other than the obvious challenge of teaching in the middle of a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic—has been balancing work and my personal life in a healthy way. Because as teachers we care for our students so much, it is incredibly easy to get caught up doing so much to help them succeed that we forget to take care of ourselves. This is especially challenging for me throughout the heavy competitive seasons of marching band in the fall and the show choir season in the spring, where regular evening rehearsals and weekend contests consume a lot of outside time. I quickly learned that I need to make sure that I leave the school for at least a little bit (even if only to get dinner) to help clear my brain for a bit. I do also make a regular habit of calling family, friends, and mentors as I am driving to and from rehearsals, which helps me maintain balance as well.
JN: Describe your involvement and relationship with the IU Department of Bands/Wind Conducting during your time as an undergraduate Music Education major.
AD: While at IU, I was a three-year member of the Marching Hundred and Big Red Basketball Pep Band, two-time member of the IU Wind Ensemble, and one-time member of the IU Symphonic Band. I also served on the board of the Indiana University chapter of the National Band Association for two years, where I helped organize social events and enrichment activities for the many students of the band department. I had the pleasure of working with five different band department faculty members and gleaned endless words of wisdom and experiences during my time at IU. Each and every one of them were fantastic mentors while I was in school, and it is incredibly evident that each and every one of them care deeply for their students. They do an outstanding job of programming a balance of new repertoire and classics, along with music from diverse sources which has inspired me to be conscious about this with my own students.
Also, while at IU, I became incredibly close with many of my fellow music education majors. Because many of our course experiences overlapped, we spent a lot of time together. The courses through the IU Department of Bands do an outstanding job of developing a sense of community between students where we feel safe with one another and can have incredibly empowering discussions with one another. I stay in touch with many of these people regularly who either teach near and around the Indianapolis metropolitan area or who are around the country via video calls. These connections I sincerely feel helped each one of us succeed through college and in our future career endeavors.
JN: What lessons and/or experiences have proved to be the most valuable to you from your time as an IU student, as applied to entering the profession of music teaching?
AD: The lessons gained during my time at IU are way too plentiful to count, but many of them tie back to the practical experiences I gained performing with and leading ensembles within the school. The IU Music Education degree program does a great job of balancing deep discussions with practical experiences. I took every undergraduate conducting course available and had lots of time to refine my conducting abilities and exposure to music. The Wind Band Literature course helped expose me to numerous sources of literature for my future students and encouraged me to think critically about the quality of the musical experiences I provide for my students. The Administration of School Bands class covered much of the practical knowledge required to set up a successful band program beyond running a rehearsal (which as we all know is 80% of the job or more). However, I think the most valuable part of the degree path was being surrounded by some of the best music students and faculty in the country. At almost any point there will be some sort of music being made at IU in almost any desired form. There are very few places in the world where there will be such a quantity and variety of performances to enjoy and to perform. By being a part of so many of these performances, I feel that I became a much more well-rounded musician, have an elevated musical concept, and can share my knowledge from these experiences with my students.
JN: What have you enjoyed most about entering the profession of music teaching—and perhaps even more specifically, your current position?
AD: First and foremost, getting to build relationships with students and help them grow over the course of their time in high school is the payoff that makes all the hard work worth it. I love the pure variety of forms of musical expression which I get to experience with my students. We are fortunate to have so many different opportunities for our students, and I enjoy helping them develop a passion for being a well-rounded musician. Whether they are walking off the football field or the stage of an auditorium with their faces beaming, I know that they got to experience something incredibly special with a group of their peers, and I love getting to help play a role in giving them that feeling.
JN: What are some ways that you and your colleagues have kept yourself and your students motivated and positive in this difficult landscape of Covid-19?
AD: While COVID has certainly rocked everybody’s world, it has helped encourage me to be creative and flexible in the ways we help our students have high-value musical experiences. We were lucky in Whiteland to not have to juggle much virtual-only learning in the past couple of years. We tried to be creative in our approaches, especially through a period of hybrid learning during the winter of 2020-21. Our jazz bands became split jazz combos with half of our class present on any given day. We did a one-movement marching band show for our four home football games once we knew we were starting the semester in person. We did participate in virtual solo and ensemble contest, which allowed us to help give each of the students a piece which they could personally feel successful, which helped them feel motivated. I personally tried to shift my mind away from focusing on any particular ratings and just tried to make music with my students, valuing the limited time I had with my students face-to-face.
JN: Is there anything else you’d like to include?
AD: For two years now, I have had the pleasure of getting to meet and work with some outstanding teachers and see some incredible things that are happening around the state. Never forget, through all the trials and tribulations we deal with every day, why we all got into this profession: to make music with our students. It has been a pleasure to meet many of you around the state, and a look forward to meeting many more in the next few years!
Peter Sampson (Director of Bands at Whiteland Community High School) and Adam Dostalik’s concert bands, jazz ensembles, and marching band have received straight gold ratings at ISSMA contest. In 2022, the WCHS Jazz Ensemble 1 qualified for the ISSMA State Jazz Finals by receiving one of the top nine scores in the state at district contest.
Outside of school, Adam has performed with the Indiana Wind Symphony and currently plays trombone with the Director’s Jazz Orchestra in and around the Indianapolis area. He enjoys cooking, baking, and socializing with his peers in his spare time.
Ideas from the Podium
Repertoire to Know
by Dr. Jason H. Nam, Assistant Professor of Music (Bands)
Often referred to as the “Dean of African-American Composers,” William Grant Still (1895-1978) was a prolific composer of nearly 200 works, including five symphonies, four ballets, nine operas, over thirty choral works, art songs, works for solo instruments, and several works for wind band. Still was the first American American composer to have an opera produced by the New York City Opera, the first to conduct a major American symphony orchestra, and the first to have an opera performed on national television. Still grew up in Little Rock, Arkansas, where he displayed talent and aptitude on the violin. He began his undergraduate studies towards a Bachelor of Science degree at Wilberforce University, where he conducted the band and learned several wind instruments between attending classes. He then transferred to the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, where he was granted a special scholarship by the faculty, and would later pursue graduate studies at the New England Conservatory. His teachers were George Chadwick and Edgard Varèse.
Still wrote From the Delta in 1945 for the Goldman Band in New York City, and it was premiered by that ensemble in 1947. The piece quickly received many performances around the country. The work is comprised of three movements: “Work Song,” “Spiritual,” and “Dance.” The piece depicts portraits of scenes from Mississippi delta life: from illustrating a chain gang singing their way through days of hard labor, to a somber reflection of the pain felt by African Americans living in slavery, to the final movement’s expression of joy, of friends coming together to celebrate in spite of their hardships.
From the Delta may be purchased from williamgrantstillmusic.com.
Spring Showcase Concert Preview
livestreamed and accessible worldwide via IUMusiclive!
The IU Department of Bands is excited to share our Spring Bands Showcase program on Thursday, April 21 at 8PM in the Musical Arts Center. The IU Concert and Symphonic Bands, as well as the IU Wind Ensemble, will be performing works by Shostakovich, Nelson, Salfelder, Williams, Etezady, and others. The showcase concert will feature two premieres: IU composition student Nick Penrod’s Flight Amid an Autumn Wind and Timothy Mahr’s There Are Giants Among Us, which is dedicated to David C. Woodley, Director of IU Athletic Bands from 1993-2020, for his 29 years of loyal service to the students of Indiana University. We are also excited to welcome guest ensemble The Akropolis Reed Quintet. The winner of seven national chamber music prizes including the 2014 Fischoff Gold Medal, they will join the IU Wind Ensemble for a performance of Roshanne Etezady’s Storm Warning. The evening will conclude with an exciting and energetic performance from the renowned IU Big Red Basketball Band. You won’t want to miss this final concert of the academic year from the IU Bands!
Fall 2021 Mystery Tune Revealed:
Exhilaration by Donald Grantham, from Southern Harmony
Wind Conducting Faculty Activities
Through service, teaching, and outreach activities, the Department of Bands faculty mentor students and connect with colleagues across the country.
In the case of Dr. Eric M. Smedley, he will be connecting across the world! In July 2022 he will present Fostering Creativity in the Wind Band Setting: A Method for Performing Improvised Symphonic Works at the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles (WASBE) Conference in Prague, Czech Republic.
In February, Dr. Smedley, Dr. Nam, and Dr. Galus were guest conductors at the Quad State Band Festival at Murray State University (Murray, KY).
Dr. Jason H. Nam presented at the 2021 Midwest Clinic in a panel discussion titled: Beyond the Token: Asian Perspectives in Wind Band Music. The session sought to bring together composers and conductors of wind band music to hear perspectives on topics such as cultural identity, diversity in programming, and authenticity.
He also presented at the 2022 College Band Directors National Association North Central Conference held at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he collaborated with Dr. Caroline Hand (Ball State University) and Dr. Shawn Vondran (Northwestern University) on a session titled A Rising Tide: Cultivating Excellence and Artistic Equity in “Second” and “Third” Ensembles.
Dr. Nam will be featured as a guest presenter at the 2022 Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia National Conference, held in St. Louis, MO on July 21-22. Professor Nam will present on the topic of Guiding Principles of Effective Rehearsal Techniques for Conductors.
Dr. Tiffany J. Galus traveled and performed with the Big Red Basketball Band at the Men’s and Women’s B1G Tournaments, the Men’s NCAA Play-In game in Dayton, Ohio, and their NCAA Round 1 game in Portland, Oregon, as well as the Women’s NCAA Sweet 16 in Bridgeport, CT.
In May, Dr. Galus will guest conduct at the Four State Band Festival, Pittsburg State University, Pittsburg, KS.
In July, Dr. Galus will guest conduct at the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, Twin Lake, MI.
Dr. Rodney Dorsey was (or will be) a guest conduct or guest clinician at the following events:
Ohio Music Educators District 4 and 7 Honor Band, November 2021
Capital Section Honor Band, Sacramento, CA, January 2022
Florida All-State Band, January 2022
Missouri All-State Band, January 2022
University of Illinois Conducting Workshop, February 2022
American Bandmasters Association, Indianapolis, IN (IU Wind Ensemble performance), March 2022
Brigham Young University Band Festival, Provo, Utah, March 2022
Virginia Tech Concert Band Festival, Blacksburg, VA, April 2022
University of Minnesota Wind Band Conducting Workshop, July 2022
Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, Twin Lake, MI, July 2022
As always … BRAVO on such a fantastic communication outreach from the IU Band Dept! 🙂 Wonderful work – and glad to see things “happening” in Bloomington. Keep up the great work, Friends!
Bill Laughlin, Thank you for the kind words! Jason Nam is the editor so I will pass along your comment to him. All the best, Claire Tafoya