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UMEA President
Sam Tsugawa

News

Registration Form for 2015 UMEA Mid-Winter Conference now available

The 2015 UMEA Mid-Winter Conference registration form is now available to view and print-out.Click here
Online registration is coming soon.
Deadline for conference online or mail-in preregistration is January 30, 2015.
Pre-registration packets will be available for pick-up from 6:30-9:00 p.m., February 5, 2015 (the evening before the conference begins) at the Dixie Center in St. George, Utah.
On-site registration begins Feb. 5 from 6:30-9:00 p.m. and Friday, Feb. 6 starting at 6:45 a.m., also at the Dixie Center.

2015 All-State Band and Orchestra Audition App Now Available

Students may now access the 2015 all-state band and orchestra audition app to record and submit their applications and auditions.
Click here for All-State Orchestra Page
The audition deadline is October 10, 2014.
Click here for All-State Band Page
The audition deadline is November 9, 2014.

2015 All-State Jazz Conductor


Dennis Mackrel
Dennis was born, April 3, 1962. A child prodigy, he began playing the drums when he was two and became a professional musician at the age of ten when he performed in the Anchorage Community Theatre's production of "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum."

Developing his craft in various playing situations, Dennis received numerous awards, such as "Who's Who in Music," 1979; National Endowment for the Arts grant for composition in 1983 and 1992; "Outstanding Alumni" from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

While attending UNLV, he was a member of the acclaimed UNLV Jazz Ensemble where his drumming and arranging skills caught the attention of vocalist Joe Williams. In 1981, at 19 years of age, Dennis moved to New York City and landed a gig as a drummer on Broadway. His Broadway credits include "The First" and "A Chorus Line."

In January of 1983, Dennis joined the Count Basie Orchestra on the personal recommendation of Mr. Williams. He would become the youngest member of the orchestra and the last drummer to be hired by Mr. Basie personally. Dennis traveled extensively and worked alongside Mr. Basie until his death in April 1984. He continued with the orchestra under the direction of interim leader Eric Dixon followed by Thad Jones. In 1985, under Mr. Jones's leadership, the Count Basie Orchestra recorded one of Dennis's compositions entitled "And That's That."

Dennis stayed with the band, when Frank Foster took over as leader until December of 1987. Dennis' composition "Bus Dust" was included on the CD "Long Live The Chief" which was recorded during Mr. Foster's tenure as leader.

After leaving the Orchestra, he returned to New York and would soon become the drummer of choice for a number of large ensembles, including the American Jazz Orchestra, the Carla Bley Big Band, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, Buck Clayton's Swing Band, the Dizzy Gillespie All Star Big Band.

Dennis's transition from sideman to leader continued with his frequent trips to Europe as a guest conductor, arranger and/or soloist for such outstanding ensembles as the Kluvers Big Band in Aarhus, Denmark, the Jazz Orchestra of the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Holland, the WDR Big Band in Koln, Germany and in 2010, he returned to the Count Basie Orchestra where he served as its leader and chief conductor until 2013.

In addition to being a seasoned musician, Dennis is also a highly respected composer/arranger whose commissioned works have been recorded by the United States Military Academy at West Point's Jazz Knights Big Band, The Temple University Jazz Ensemble, The Columbus Jazz Orchestra and, most notably, the McCoy Tyner Big Band whose Grammy winning CDs "The Turning Point" and "Journey" included four of Dennis's arrangements.

As an educator, he continues to conduct master classes, seminars, and workshops though out Europe, Asia, Canada and the USA. From 2002-2003, Dennis served as a guest professor at the Royal Conservatory in Aarhus, Denmark and from 2012-2013, he was the Visiting Artist in Jazz Studies at the prestigious Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. He is currently a faculty member of the Skidmore Jazz Institute in Saratoga Springs, NY as well as the Birch Creek Summer Jazz Camp in Egg Harbor, Wisconsin.

Some of the other notable musicians Dennis has performed with include: Monty Alexander, Tony Bennett, Quincy Jones, Hank Jones and Sir George Shearing, who said, "If I ever have a record date coming up that calls for a drummer and Dennis is not available, I'll postpone the session. He's that good."

2015 Junior High Honor Choir Conductor


Justin Miller
Justin Miller is a native Southern Californian but was raised in Westport, CT. He returned to Southern California after High School and soon began his studies at Chapman University. While at Chapman, Justin earned degrees in Music Education and Choral Conducting and was fortunate enough to conduct the Chapman University Choir and University Singers in concert. Justin won awards for his accomplishments in conducting and his contributions to the choral department of the Conservatory of Music. He received his Bachelor of Music in 2008 and teaching credential in 2010, both from Chapman.

In 2008, Justin assumed the role of Musical Director of the Westminster Chorus. Under his direction, the Westminster Chorus has grown into an ensemble with a diverse repertoire while keeping its roots in Barbershop music. In 2009, Justin led the Westminster Chorus to the title of "Choir of the World" at the International Musical Eisteddfod in Llangollen, Wales and to the International Chorus Championship of the Barbershop Harmony Society in 2010. The Westminster Chorus has also toured all over the United States and several other countries including Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

In 2012, Justin became the Musical Director of the Masters of Harmony, 8-time International Chorus Champions of the Barbershop Harmony Society. He currently directs both the Masters of Harmony and the Westminster Chorus.

Justin is very active with the Barbershop Harmony Society (BHS). He has served on the faculty of Harmony University, is a certified Music Judge and is a sought after coach.

Justin is on the choral faculty at Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, CA. He is the former Choral Director of Staples High School in Westport, CT and the Musical Director of the Big Apple Chorus in Manhattan, NY. He just recently married his beautiful wife, Andrea.
Click Here for More Jr. High All-State Honor Choir Information

2015 Utah All-State Orchestra Conductor


Anthony J. Maiello
Anthony J. Maiello received both his bachelor's and master's degrees in music from Ithaca College in l965 and l967, respectively. He also studied at the National Conducting Institute in Washington, D.C., under the direction of Mr. Leonard Slatkin, former Musical Director of the National Symphony Orchestra. He has served as a Cover Conductor for the National Symphony Orchestra at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, D.C.

Mr. Maiello's many professional credits include clinician, adjudicator and guest conductor of All-State, All-State Sectional, Regional, District, All-County and All-City ensembles with appearances throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, England, Europe, The Netherlands and The Bahamas. He conducted musical activities for the Gold Medal Ceremonies at the 1980 Olympics in Lake Placid, New York, the New York State Music Camp & Institute; has served as New York State Music Association adjudicator; clinician with Yamaha, and clinician for Warner Bros. Publications, President of the International Association of Jazz Educators-New York State Chapter and as Musical Director for Music Festivals International. He is an elected member in both The American Bandmasters Association and Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society. He also holds membership in ASCAP, the National Band Association, The American String Teachers Association, College Band Directors National Association, Virginia Music Educators Association, Virginia Jazz Service Organization, The College Music Society and The American Symphony Orchestra League.

Mr. Maiello's academic experience includes extensive teaching in the public schools. He served as Professor of Music and Chairman of Performance at the Crane School of Music, Potsdam College of SUNY, Potsdam, New York, where his duties included advanced instrumental conducting, applied clarinet, woodwind and percussion techniques; and conductor of the Crane Wind Ensemble. Under his direction, the ensembles at Crane and George Mason University have commissioned many new works, made numerous recordings and appearances statewide and at regional and national conferences in the United States and Canada. He is the author of CONDUCTING: A HANDS-ON-APPROACH, CONDUCT ING NUANCES : LITTLE THINGS MEAN A LOT, and co-author of the 21st CENTURY BAND METHOD.

Anthony Maiello travels widely presenting clinics, lectures and workshops, and guest conducting and adjudicating numerous music festivals. He is presently an Associate Director of the School of Music and Professor of Music at George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia where he conducts the GMU Repertory Orchestra and teaches several conducting courses. Professor Maiello was awarded the title of "University Professor" by the Board of Visitors, the highest rank given to faculty members at George Mason University. He was also given the Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity prestigious Orpheus Award. Mr. Maiello has also served as Associate Conductor of The McLean Orchestra, McLean, Virginia, has been appointed an Honorary Conductor of The United States Navy Band, Washington, D.C. and is presently the conductor of the American Symphonic Winds and American Festival Philharmonic Orchestra, Washington, D.C. Professor Maiello is the founder and Conductor/Artistic Director of the American Festival Pops Orchestra, a professional ensemble in the greater Washington, DC metropolitan area dedicated to promoting popular American Music.
Click Here for More All-State Orchestra Information

Announcing the 2015 High School All-State Band Conductor

Dennis Fisher
Dennis Fisher is the Conductor of the Symphonic Band, Associate Director of Wind Studies at the University of North Texas and Professor of Music in Conducting and Ensembles. Fisher has a wide variety of experience and expertise as a conductor, arranger, clinician, educator and consultant. Mr. Fisher is very active as an arranger for all wind mediums, including symphonic band, marching band and chamber music. Also, he frequently serves as a clinician, conductor and adjudicator throughout the United States along with international appearances in Thailand, Japan, Great Britain, Europe, Scandinavia, Canada, Greece, and Russia. For a complete biography, click here

The UMEA All-State Band Concert will take place at 2 p.m., Saturday, January 24, in Salt Lake's Abravanel Hall
Click Here for More All-State Band Information

Announcing the 2015 Womens High School Honor Choir Conductor

Claudia Bigler
Claudia Bigler is currently in her 23th year of directing choral music at Box Elder High School, in Brigham City, Utah. Prior to her tenure at Box Elder, she taught in the Carbon School District in southeastern Utah for six years. She has taught middle school, junior high school, and high school, and has served as a music consultant/teacher for the Northern Utah Home School Association, working with elementary students. She has loved teaching every age.
Ms. Bigler has served as Choral Vice-President of the Utah Music Educators Association, and is a past state president of the Utah chapter of ACDA. She is currently serving as a member of the State Choral Committee and as the UMEA/UHSAA State Adjudication Chair. She has served as a guest director for the Utah State Women's Honor Choir, the Utah State Junior High School Honor Choir, the Cache Children's Choirfest, the Clark County, Nevada Honor Choirs and numerous district honor choirs. She has twice been a director for the Utah Ambassadors of Music European Tour. She is currently serving as Managing Director for the Trade Secrets Music Education Workshop at Utah State University.
In 2012, Ms. Bigler was recognized with the Superior Accomplishment Award from UMEA. She is a published composer with several pieces in print.
Ms. Bigler is married to Jeff Bigler, (a first tenor) and she and her husband were recently retired from singing with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, having reached the “out-to-pasture” age of 60.
Click Here for More All-State Womens Honor Choir Information

Announcing the 2015 Mens High School Honor Choir Conductor

Stephen Reynolds
Stephen Reynolds grew up in the Salt Lake City area. He began piano lessons at age six and became involved in instrumental and choral groups during middle school and high school. He earned a Bachelor of Music degree from Utah State University where he graduated as valedictorian of the College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences in 2004. He received his Master of Music degree in Music Education from Brigham Young University in 2009. Among his performance credits, Mr. Reynolds has performed as a soloist in community Messiah sing-ins and at Swiss Days events; has been a member of and soloist with the Utah Chamber Artists; sang with Musica Reservata of Utah, a Renaissance chamber ensemble; and has performed in a number of musical theater and opera productions.

Mr. Reynolds is in his eleventh year as the choral director at Wasatch High School in Heber City, Utah. He has taught choral music in grades 7-12, directed community children's choirs, developed a hand bell choir, and taught AP Music Theory and French. In 2011 he was named Teacher of the Year for Wasatch County School District.

Mr. Reynolds lives in Heber City with his wife and four children and enjoys spending his leisure time with them.

Click Here for More All-State Mens Honor Choir Information

New Approval Form for Sanctioning Events

UMEA has been given the responsibility for vetting all music events for sanctioning by the Utah High School Activities Association. The Application for Approval of Music Event form, linked here: Click here for event approval form, must be completely filled out and submitted to Sharee Jorgensenshareekj@gmail.com no later than 45 days before the event. The form must be submitted EVERY YEAR, regardless if it is an annual event.
Events must comply with the following:
  • Compliance to UHSSA eligibility rules must be followed. If participants involved are in grades other than 9 through 12, an open class must be held separately.
  • Each event must show proof of liability and or property insurance. UMEA is only the vetting body and assumes NO RISK OR LIABILITY FOR THE EVENT.
  • Be advised that no music or speech event will be sanctioned, if school time is missed the day prior to the event for travel or participation. In essence, not more than one day of school time may be missed, including travel, to obtain a sanction.

Date change alert

Dates previously posted for the State Choir Festival and the State Orchestra Festival have been switched to better accomodate a desired venue.
  • State Orchestra Festival: May 8-9, 2015 at Maple Mountain High School*
  • State Choir Festival: May 15-16, 2015 at Libby Gardner Hall, U of U Campus

*Note additional change: With the date change, Salem Hills HS was not available to host the State Orchestra Festival. The new location is Maple Mountain HS.

Upcoming Events:

  • September 23, 2014, Weber Marching Band Review, Weber State University Stewart Stadium, Ogden
  • September 27, Nebo Tournament of Bands, Payson H.S. More Information/Schedule
  • October 4, Bridgerland Marching Band Competition, USU Romney Stadium, Logan More Information/Schedule
  • October 7, Wasatch Marching Band Competition, University of Utah Rice-Eccles Stadium, Salt Lake City
  • October 11, All-State Choir Concert, Tabernacle, SLC More Information/Schedule & Program
  • October 11, Rocky Mountain Invitational Marching Band Competition, LaVell Edwards Stadium, Provo
  • October 21, Davis Cup Marching Band Competition, Davis HS, Kaysville More Information/Schedule
  • Octoer 25, Mt. Timpanogos Marching Band Competition, Pleasant Grove H.S., Pleasant Grove More Information/Schedule
  • October 25, UAOSA Workshop, 8:30 a.m. - 3 p.m., Rowland Hall School Link to website
  • October 31, Red Rocks State Marching Band Championships, Dixie State University Hansen Stadium, St. George
  • January 24, 2015, All-State Band & Orchestra Concert, Abravanel Hall, 2 p.m.
    More Information for Orchestra All-State

    More Information for Band All-State
  • January 30, Deadline for UMEA Mid-Winter Conference pregistration. Last day for online registration, and mail-in registration must also be postmarked by this date.
  • January 31, High School Honor Choirs Concert, Abravanel Hall, 1 p.m.
  • January 31, Jr. High Honor Choir Concert, Abravanel Hall, 7 p.m.
  • February 6-7, UMEA Professional Development Conference, Dixie Center, St. George More Information
  • February 21, UAOSA Workshop, 8:30 a.m. - 3 p.m., Rowland Hall School Link to website
  • March 5, Music on the Hill Day, State Capitol, Noon More Information
  • March 19-20, State Jr. High/Middle Band Festival, Libby Gardner Hall More Information
  • March 21, State Percussive Arts Society Festival, Juan Diego H.S.
  • March 21,UAOSA Workshop, 8:30 a.m. - 3 p.m., Rowland Hall School Link to website
  • March 27-28, State Jazz Festival, Olympus H.S. More Information
  • April 25, State Solo & Ensemble Festival
  • May 1-2, State Concert Band Festival, Corner Canyon HS More Information
  • May 8-9, State Orchestra Festival, Salem Hills HS More Information
  • May 15-16, State Choir Festival, Libby Gardner Hall More Information
  • May 30, UMEA Marching Band Leadership Clinic, American Fork HS

Join or Renew Membership in UMEA & NAfME

Joining UMEA allows members to receive support and instruction from the state's largest professional music-teaching association as well as membership to NAfME, the largest national music educators organization. Click on the link to see member benefits and receive more information about joining UMEA/NAfME Click here for Membership Benefits

Advocacy

Learn how UMEA supports music education on our Advocacy Page. Click here for Advocacy page.

Featured Advocacy Article:
"Arts Involvement and At-Risk Students"

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