Director of Operations Appointed to Staff

Douglas R. Fletcher will be appointed Director of Operations beginning fall 2017.  Fletcher will organize and implement activities associated with Purdue Band Day, Purdue Jazz Festival, the Indianapolis 500, Leath Scholarship auditions, and the Partners in Music Education program.  He will also oversee and maintain the departmental rehearsal and performance calendar.

Before being appointed Director of Operations, Fletcher served as Visiting Instructor during the 2016-2017 academic year for Purdue Bands & Orchestras.

Fletcher’s public teaching career includes directorships at Monroe-Central Jr. /Sr. High School (1985-1992), Winchester Community High School (1992-1998), Highland High School (1998-2010), Anderson High School (2010-2011), and a second stint at Winchester Community High School (2011-2016).  His high school concert bands have performed at the IMEA State Convention on three occasions with ensembles from three different schools, twice at the ISSMA State Concert Band Finals with the Highland Wind Ensemble, and numerous times at ISSMA Organizational and IMEA Concert Band Festivals.

Fletcher’s successes as a high school marching band director include several appearances at the ISSMA Marching Band State Finals. His true niche and passion, however, has been with the historic Indiana State Fair Band Day contest. He is the only director to win the Indiana State Fair Band Day at four separate schools, and holds a record of thirteen wins for the most State Fair championships. His marching bands have performed in numerous major parades: the Indianapolis 500 Festival Parade, the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade, the Hollywood Christmas Parade, the National Memorial Day Parade in Washington D.C., and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City.

Douglas Fletcher was named the 2008 IMEA Outstanding High School Music Educator, and was the recipient of the Phi Beta Mu Outstanding Bandmaster Award in 2010.  Fletcher holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Music Education from Ball State University.  He played trombone in the Anderson Symphony Orchestra for twenty years and the Muncie Symphony Orchestra for ten years. Doug has served as choir director/organist at various churches in Anderson, Muncie, and Winchester.  He also arranges music for marching bands, and frequently serves as a clinician and adjudicator.  Doug also coordinated the IMEA Honor Band for several years, and has served on the IMEA Board of Directors.

Fletcher is also a member of the Music Educators National Conference, Indiana Music Educators Association, Indiana Bandmasters Association, Phi Beta Mu honorary fraternity for band directors, and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.

Doug is married to Amy Fletcher, who teaches in the Greenfield-Central Schools.  The Fletchers are excited to be moving to West Lafayette with their two black labs, Bailey and Boaz.


New Twirlers Selected for 2017-2018 Purdue “All-American” Marching Band

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Olivia Zugai of McKeesport, Pennsylvania, is the newest twirler to win the highly coveted position of Purdue Golden Girl. On Saturday, February 25, Zugai received the top score at auditions held at Holloway Gymnasium on Purdue’s campus to earn the title.   She will become Golden Girl No. 29 continuing a tradition started by Director of Bands Emeritus, Dr. Al G. Wright in 1954. This past season, Zugai was one of the Silver Twins alongside Kaitlyn Schleis. She also held a position on the All American Twirling Team her freshman and sophomore years at Purdue.

Zugai won’t be the only twirler making her debut in a new position at the Purdue vs. Louisville football game on September 2. There will be a new face in the Girl-in-Black position as well.

Kaitlyn Schleis, a rising sophomore in speech, language and hearing sciences from Oshkosh, Wisconsin, was selected to twirl as Girl-in-Black for the 2017-2018 season.

Next fall, the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band will also welcome two incoming freshmen to complete the solo twirler roster. The Silver Twins for 2017-2018 are Alicia Dennie of Culver, Indiana and Brooke Wyatt of LaFontaine, Indiana.

In addition, seven students were offered spots on the All-American Twirling Team. They include rising seniors Erin Groll and Kara Tighe, sophomores Mackenzie Joefreda and Emma Schafer, and incoming freshmen Meryl Campbell, Sarah Cohen, and Marin Parker.

Purdue University is unique because twirlers, as well as all band members, are required to audition for positions annually. All candidates must be admitted to Purdue University in order to qualify for auditions.


Adam Bodony Joins Faculty as Assistant Professor of Bands, Director of Orchestras

Adam M. Bodony will be appointed Assistant Professor of Bands, effective fall of 2017.  Bodony will serve as the director of the Philharmonic and Symphony Orchestras, and will oversee the department’s Applied Music program.

Before being appointed Assistant Professor of Bands, Bodony served as Director of Orchestras, first as Visiting Lecturer during the 2015-2016 academic year, and then as Visiting Instructor during the 2016-2017 academic year for Purdue Bands & Orchestras.

Bodony currently serves as Executive Artistic Director of the New World Youth Orchestras in Indiana.  Based at the Hilbert Circle Theatre in Indianapolis, the New World Youth Orchestras is an organization of youth orchestras with approximately 220 young musicians enrolled from all over the state of Indiana.  The organization’s top orchestra made its Carnegie Hall debut in 2016 under the direction of Bodony, and will make its Orchestra Hall (Chicago, IL) debut in 2017. Additionally, through partnerships with local universities, Bodony sets and oversees a pre-college music education curriculum for the members of the New World Youth Orchestras, including areas in music theory, music history, chamber music, and conducting. Bodony also served as Cover Conductor and Pre-Concert Lecturer for the Indianapolis Symphony during the 2014-2015 season.

Bodony’s previous posts include Associate Conductor of the Missouri Symphony Orchestra’s Hot Summer Nights Music Festival (2013-2015) and Artistic Director of the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra (2014-2016).  Bodony has also worked with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra (Czech Repulic), as well as several high school, college, and community ensembles across the country.  His primary conducting teachers include Arthur Fagen, Leonid Korchmar, and Kirk Trevor.

Bodony earned a bachelor’s degree in both religious studies and trombone performance from DePauw University in 2008. Bodony later received a master’s degree in trombone performance from Indiana University in 2011 where his primary teachers were Jim Beckel and Carle Lenthe, respectively.  He has pursued conducting studies at the St. Petersburg Conservatory (Russia) and Indiana University.

As a trombonist, Bodony has performed with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and can be heard playing 2nd trombone on their latest two albums released under the Telarc label, conducted by Krzysztof Urbański and Jun Märkl, respectively.

In 2013, Bodony was honored with the Beckmann Emerging Artist Award given by the Arts Council of Indianapolis to young professionals with exceptional talent and promise in a given field.

 


Jonathan Sweet Joins Faculty as Assistant Professor of Bands

Jon Sweet is excited to join the Purdue Bands & Orchestras faculty as Assistant Professor of Bands in the fall of 2017, after finishing coursework towards a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree at the University of Kentucky. Sweet received his Bachelor of Music Education from Abilene Christian University in 2004, and earned a Masters of Music degree in Wind Band Conducting from Stephen F. Austin State University in 2013.

Prior to his appointment to Purdue’s faculty, Sweet served as a Graduate Teaching Assistant at the University of Kentucky. He taught undergraduate conducting students, marching band techniques, private lessons in the Euphonium studio, conducted the Concert Band, guest conducted the Wind Symphony and Symphony Bands, assisted with the Wildcat Marching Band, and directed the Wildcat Pep Band for Women’s Volleyball, Women’s Gymnastics, and Men’s Basketball.

Prior to arriving at the University of Kentucky, Sweet spent 11 years as a public school band director in Texas, where his groups frequently achieved superior ratings, best in class awards, best in festival awards, outstanding visual awards, and outstanding general effect awards.

In addition to his teaching experience, Jon has operated a marching band design and consultation business, Sweet Marching, where he has designed over 150 shows since 2004. These designs have included performances at Bands of America Grand Nationals, Bands of America Regionals, and Super Regionals, Texas State, Area and Regional Marching Band Championships, and the University of Kentucky.  These performances include schools from Florida, Idaho, Kentucky, Michigan, New Mexico, Texas, Utah, and Virginia.

In demand as both a marching and concert band clinician, Jon has worked with many fine groups and incorporates his love of energetic performances and positive experiences in the education of students and leaders.  Jon has adjudicated for UIL (TX), USBands, American Classics Festivals, and other invitational competitions.

Jon is happily married to his wife, Lori. The two just celebrated their 12th anniversary.

 


“All-American” Marching Band to Bring Back Slayter Hill Pregame Concert

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Pumping new enthusiasm into a beloved event, the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band, in conjunction with Purdue Athletics, will rekindle a football game day tradition this fall. “Thrill on the Hill” at Slayter Center returns and will take place 90 minutes before kickoff of home games. This event will replace the “211 Session” in Mackey Arena.

“For years, the band held pregame concerts at Slayter, and we are excited to bring back this tradition,” director of bands Jay Gephart said.

“I have heard how popular the Slayter concerts were in the past, and we are pleased to help renew a fan-favorite event,” athletics director Mike Bobinski said.

“Thrill on the Hill” will take place at Slayter Center before every game except the Sept. 23 Homecoming contest, when the band will perform on Engineering Mall.

Fans can expect the concert to be fast and upbeat, showcasing the entire 380-plus members of the band, along with cheerleaders, Purdue Pete and guest Purdue celebrities.

After each game, the “All-American” Marching Band will continue to perform a postgame concert on the field at Ross-Ade before marching to the fountain at Hovde Hall to execute the traditional drum major breakdown.



Penn High School Symphonic Winds to Perform with Purdue Wind Ensemble

LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Fifty-nine students from the Penn High School Symphonic Winds will be joining the Purdue Wind Ensemble on stage at the Long Center for the Performing Arts for the “Heroes” concert on Sunday, November 20. The concert will pay tribute to heroes from every walk of life. From Olympic athletes and Rosa Parks, to our active military and veterans, this concert will be one you will not want to miss. This patriotic themed concert begins at 2:30pm, and is free and open to the public.

Penn High School is located in Mishawaka, Indiana. It is a large suburban high school that is consistently rated as one of the highest-performing schools in the state. At this school, over 450 students participate in the five concert bands, three jazz ensembles, two percussion ensembles, pep band, marching band, jazz combo, and five winter color guards.

The Penn Symphonic Winds will perform “Incidental Suite” by Claude T. Smith, “Nimrod” by Edward Elgar, “Psalm 46” by John Zdechlik, “Godzilla Eats Las Vegas!” by Eric Whitacre, and “His Honor” by Henry Fillmore. The Purdue Wind Ensemble will be performing “Fanfare for Freedom” by Harry Bulow, “American Salute” by Morton Gould, “A Movement for Rosa” by Mark Camphouse, “American Pageant” by Thomas Know, and “Proud to Serve” by Michael Davis.

The Penn Symphonic Winds, the top concert band at Penn High School, is under the direction of Glenn Northern and assisted by Chris Paulson. In 2015, the Penn Symphonic Winds were named the co-champion at the Indiana State School Music Association State Concert Band Finals.  The Penn Symphonic Winds have been invited to perform at the Indiana Music Educators Convention three times (2007, 2012, and 2015), and performed at the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic in 2008.

For further information, please contact Jaclyn Heinz, heinzj@purdue.edu


J. DONALD ROBERTSON TO GUEST CONDUCT “ALL-AMERICAN” BAND DAY 2016

On Saturday, September 24, the Nevada Wolf Pack football program will roll into Ross-Ade Stadium for a non-conference game against the Purdue Boilermakers. The excitement of Purdue Band Day will bring 23 high school bands to campus to perform under the baton of guest conductor Donald Robertson.

Donald Robertson, who retired in 1996 from Columbus, Indiana schools, was one of state’s most successful high school band directors. At the
beginning of his profession, Don became widely successful with his marching bands in field competition at the Indiana State Fair Marching
Contest. His state fair bands were consistently in the top 25 of the 125 band competition. Throughout his career, his marching bands were
grand sweepstakes winners, appeared in festival parades for bowl games, remained top at ISSMA events, and were featured at an IMEA
convention. Robertson was even named Outstanding Young Educator and later on was recognized as a top three educator in the state.

Donald Robertson was awarded the Phi Beta Mu Outstanding Bandmaster Award in 1995 and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2005. He served four terms on the ISSMA
board and held memberships in IMEA, NBA, ASBDA, IBA, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, and Phi Beta Mu, along with being a 50 year member of the Masonic Lodge, Scottish Rite, and
Murat Shrine. Robertson has served as a brass instructor at several summer camps and has been a clinician and judge in Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, Kentucky, and Tennessee.


JAY GEPHART APPOINTED 2016 HONORARY OLD MASTER AT PURDUE UNIVERSITY

The Purdue University Old Masters Program began in 1950 when student leaders, business representatives, and university officials together defined success as “honesty, personal integrity, and good philosophy.”  The mission of the Old Masters program has been defined by uniting distinguished alumni, friends, and students, while embodying the value of the Boilermaker experience.  Each person selected as an Old Master has made significant and recognizable contributions to their field and all desire to share the same philosophies and experiences with Purdue students.

This year, Al G. Wright Chair for Purdue Bands & Orchestras, Jay Gephart, has been selected as an honorary Old Master. Jay S. Gephart joined the faculty of Purdue University in the fall of 1995 after having completed 12 years as a public school band director. In July of 2001, he was promoted to the rank of Associate Professor with tenure, and in 2009 he was promoted to Full Professor. From 1995-2006, Professor Gephart served as the music director for the Purdue Symphony Orchestra. He currently serves as Director of the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band and the Purdue Wind Ensemble.

Gephart received a Master of Music Degree in Performance with High Distinction from Indiana University in 1988 and a Bachelor of Music Education Degree with Distinction from Indiana University in 1983. Under his direction, the Purdue Wind Ensemble has shared the stage with some of the nation’s outstanding soloists and have represented Purdue at the Indiana Music Educators Association state convention on two occasions.

In February 2012, the Purdue Wind Ensemble performed a concert at the national convention of the American Bandmaster’s Association held in Indianapolis.  His wind ensemble has also performed on the stage at Chicago’s Symphony Center and at the prestigious Carnegie Hall in New York City on two occasions.  Gephart has conducted All-State Bands in Indiana, Kentucky, Colorado, Virginia, and Arkansas.  He has also served as a clinician at the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago.

Most recently, he served as guest conductor and conducting evaluator at the American Band College in Ashland, Oregon and clinician for the Hawaii Music Festival. In 1997, he was selected to conduct the music camp honor band for the Department of Education in the Northern Region of Queensland, Australia. During his career he has been the recipient of many awards and honors including the Indiana Outstanding Bandmaster Award and the Purdue University New Professional Award. He has commissioned numerous works for wind band, including “Anthem” by Steven Bryant, which was premiered in 2011, celebrating the 125th Anniversary of Purdue Bands & Orchestras.

Since being appointed director of the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band, he has heightened the national and international reputation of the program.  In 2008, the band traveled to Beijing, China to perform in the “Meet in Beijing” International Arts and Music Festival prior to the Olympic Games, in 2010 became the first Big Ten Band to lead the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, in 2013 landed in Ireland to march in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Dublin, and in 2015 established a partnership with Colombia when the band performed at the La Feria de Las Flores.

Professor Gephart has been very active in various professional organizations including Music Educator’s National Conference, National Band Association, College Band Director’s National Association, Indiana Bandmaster’s Association, Indiana Music Educators Association, and Phi Beta Mu. From 2010-2012, he served as President of the Big Ten Band Director’s Association and currently holds the position of Treasurer and Vice President of the John Philip Sousa Foundation. He is also a member of the NBA Revelli Composition Contest selection committee. Professor Gephart was elected to membership in the prestigious American Bandmaster’s Association in 2008 and currently serves on the ABA Board of Directors.

He and his wife Jana have four children and one granddaughter.


Visiting Instructors Appointed for 2016-2017 Academic Year

Adam M. Bodony

Adam M. Bodony will be appointed Visiting Instructor of Bands for the 2016-17 academic year, and will serve as the Director of Orchestras at Purdue University. Bodony will serve as the conductor of the Purdue Symphony and Philharmonic Orchestras.

Adam Bodony currently serves as Executive Artistic Director of the New World Youth Orchestras (NWYO) in Indiana.  Based at the Hilbert Circle Theatre in Indianapolis, NWYO is an organization of youth orchestras with an enrollment of approximately 220 young musicians from all over the state of Indiana.  The organization’s top orchestra made its Carnegie Hall debut in 2016 under the direction of Mr. Bodony.  Mr. Bodony’s previous posts include Artistic Director of the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra (2014-2016) and Associate Conductor of the Missouri Symphony Orchestra’s Hot Summer Nights Music Festival (2013-2015).  Mr. Bodony has also worked with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra (Czech Repulic), as well as several high school, college, and community ensembles across the country.  His primary conducting teachers include Arthur Fagen, Leonid Korchmar, and Kirk Trevor.
Mr. Bodony earned a bachelor’s degree in both religious studies and trombone performance from DePauw University in 2008 and a master’s degree in trombone performance from Indiana University in 2011, where his primary teachers were Jim Beckel and Carle Lenthe, respectively.  He has pursued conducting studies at the St. Petersburg Conservatory (Russia) and Indiana University.

As a trombonist, Mr. Bodony has frequently performed with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and can be heard playing 2nd trombone on their latest two album releases under the Telarc label, conducted by Krzysztof Urbański and Jun Märkl, respectively.  Additionally, during the 2014-2015 season, Mr. Bodony served as Cover Conductor and Pre-Concert Lecturer for the Indianapolis Symphony.

In 2013, Mr. Bodony was honored with the Beckmann Emerging Artist Award given by the Arts Council of Indianapolis to a young professional with exceptional talent and promise in a given field.

This appointment comes after the recent resignation of Professor Andy King, who has accepted a position as Director of Orchestras at Lawrence Central High School in Indianapolis.


Douglas R. Fletcher

Douglas R. Fletcher will be appointed Visiting Instructor of Bands for the 2016-2017 academic year, and will serve as assistant director for the “All-American” Marching Band, director of the Boiler Box Band, director of the Concert and Collegiate Bands, and director of Fall Concert Band.  Doug is thrilled to join the Purdue Bands & Orchestras department after a highly successful thirty-one year career as a high school band director.

Mr. Fletcher’s public teaching career includes directorships at Monroe-Central Jr./Sr. High School (1985-1992), Winchester Community High School (1992-1998), Highland High School (1998-2010), Anderson High School (2010-2011), and a second stint at Winchester Community High School (2011-2016).  His high school concert bands have performed at the IMEA State Convention on three occasions with ensembles from three different schools, twice at the ISSMA State Concert Band Finals with the Highland Wind Ensemble, and numerous times at ISSMA Organizational and IMEA Concert Band Festivals.

Fletcher’s successes as a high school marching band director include several appearances at the ISSMA Marching Band State Finals.  His true niche and passion, however, has been with the historic Indiana State Fair Band Day contest.  He is the only director to win the Indiana State Fair Band Day at four different schools and holds a record twelve wins for the most State Fair championships won as a director.  His marching bands have performed in numerous major parades including the Indianapolis 500 Festival Parade, the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade, the Hollywood Christmas Parade, the National Memorial Day Parade in Washington D.C., and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City.

Douglas Fletcher was named the 2008 IMEA Outstanding High School Music Educator and in 2010 was the recipient of the Phi Beta Mu Outstanding Bandmaster Award.  Fletcher holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Music Education from Ball State University.  He played trombone in the Anderson Symphony Orchestra for twenty years and played for ten years in the Muncie Symphony Orchestra.  Doug has served as choir director/organist at various churches in Anderson, Muncie, and Winchester.  He also arranges music for marching bands and frequently serves as a clinician and adjudicator.  Doug also coordinated the IMEA Honor Band for several years and has served on the IMEA Board of Directors.

Mr. Fletcher is a member of the Music Educators National Conference, Indiana Music Educators Association, Indiana Bandmasters Association, Phi Beta Mu honorary fraternity for band directors, and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.

Doug is married to Amy Fletcher who teaches in the Greenfield-Central Schools.  The Fletchers currently reside in Muncie with their two black labs, Bailey and Boaz.

This appointment comes after the resignation of Dr. Ishbah Cox, who is leaving Purdue to join his wife Dr. Monica Cox in Columbus, Ohio.  Dr. Monica Cox was recently appointed the inaugural head of Engineering Education at The Ohio State University. Last week, Dr. Ishbah Cox accepted a position as Director of Bands at Olentangy Orange High School in Lewis Center, Ohio.


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