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The Northwest Wind Symphony, pictured during its 2018 performance at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Missouri, will perform Nov. 22 at the Nebraska Music Educators Association conference. (Photo by Todd Weddle/Northwest Missouri State University)

The Northwest Wind Symphony, pictured during its 2018 performance at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Missouri, will perform Nov. 22 at the Nebraska Music Educators Association conference. (Photo by Todd Weddle/Northwest Missouri State University)

Oct. 29, 2019

Wind Symphony to perform at Nebraska Music Educators Conference


Northwest Missouri State University’s Wind Symphony has been selected to perform at the Nebraska Music Educators Association (NMEA) In-Service/Conference Friday, Nov. 22, at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Kimball Recital Hall.

The performance will mark the third NMEA conference appearance for the Northwest Wind Symphony and its second under the direction of conductor and artist-in-residence John Bell.

Ensembles invited to perform at the annual conference are selected from scores of applications through a blind application and peer review process. Each application is vetted by a committee of Nebraska music educators who review the recordings and recommend ensembles to appear at the conference.

“Having been selected for this performance through a competitive, blind audition process is a great honor and very humbling,” Bell said. “Our focus for this venue will be on presenting a program that demonstrates the success Northwest students experience in our department’s ensembles as well as showcasing the talents of one of our faculty members for music educators and students from across Nebraska. We need to spread the word about the great things are happening in the music area at Northwest.”

Bell also praised Northwest wind and percussion instructors Dr. Rebecca Dunnell, Derek Frank, Andrew Morales, Dr. Robert Pippin, Dr. William Richardson, Andrea Stanton, Dr. Katy Strickland, and Joseph Tomasso for their work with students in the Wind Symphony. Tomasso will join the Wind Symphony at the NMEA conference as a featured artist to perform Nathan Daughtrey’s “Twitch,” a piece for virtuosic solo clarinet and band.  

“Nearly all of our Northwest Wind Symphony students, music majors and non-majors are enrolled in applied study,” Bell said. “The work that takes place on a weekly basis in our applied faculty studios makes this kind of recognition possible, as well as the extra time students spend in individual and sectional practice.”

Bell joined the Northwest faculty in 2012. In addition to conducting the Wind Symphony at Northwest, he teaches education courses in instrumental music. During his time at Northwest, the Wind Symphony has been invited to perform at music education conferences in Missouri and Nebraska, and the band program at Northwest has been recognized by the College Band Directors National Association through peer review as one of 10 exemplary small college band programs in the United States. He also coordinates the Four-State Honor Music Festival Concert Band and is a co-director of the Northwest Summer Music Camp.

Prior to his appointment at Northwest, Bell taught instrumental music in Missouri public schools for 30 years. Ensembles under his direction received consistent superior ratings at regional and national music festivals and were invited to perform at state, national and European conferences, including the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic.

Bell is active as an adjudicator and clinician throughout the Midwest, and he maintains numerous of professional memberships and affiliations. He has received a variety of honors, including the 2019 Missouri Music Educators Association Outstanding Educator Award.

For more information about the Northwest Wind Symphony and other music ensembles at Northwest, visit www.nwmissouri.edu/finearts/music/.


Media contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager | mhorn@nwmissouri.edu | 660.562.1704