Brief historical background:

Adams Central opened its doors in 1967 as a consolidation of nine rural districts and the Juniata Public Schools. 

Succession of Directors:
1967-1969 - Dick Driml 1984-1986 - David Walcker
1969-1984 - Jack Moore 1986-present - Tom Jaworski

Highlights of Band Program:

The Senior High Band has earned consistent superior ratings at District Music Contest since the school;s early days.; The Patriot Band was selected to perform at the Nebraska Statehood Days in the Capitol Rotunda in 1993.

In addition, the Patriot band has traveled to Memorial Day Parades in the states of Colorado, Missouri, Florida, Illinois, Maryland and California.; The Junior High band has earned superior ratings 18 of 20 years from 1986-2005 and was selected to perform for the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association State Convention in 2004.



Brief historical background:

The Albion Band was organized in 1926 through the efforts of Neal Goman.  The original band consisted of eleven members, and six different instruments.

Succession of Directors:
1926-Spring - Neal Goman 1981-1983–LarryRathbun 
1926-1927 – Virgil Potter  1983-1985 – Kathy Dalby
1927- Fall – Duane Graham. 1928-Spring, Elvin Hansen 1986-1988 – Brian Anderson
1931-1932 – Mr. Compton  1988-Fall – Ken Morris
1941-1954 – Ivan Caldwell 1989- spring – Gwen Score,1989-Dawn Bussey, & Don Alcorn  
1954-1955 – William Kraus 1989-1993 – Rex Hash
1955-1960 - Bob Vanvoorhis 1993-1995 – Bill Trainhaile
1960-1965 - Charles Messerschmidt 1995-2000 – Tom Hansen
1965-1968 - Donald Hardin    2000-2003 – Shannon Tuney
1968-1970 - Steve Lake  2003-2005 – Brenda Lambert
1970-1973 – Ron Isles 2005-2007 – Nathan Capron
1973-1981 – Bruce Linafelter  2007-present – Whitney Jones


Highlights of Band Program:The Albion band, under the direction of Bob Vanvoorhis was one of the premier marching band and concert bands in the state.  Mr. Vanvoorhis later became a national figure in Choral Music.



Brief historical background:

Alliance High School has had a tradition of excellence that began in the 1930's.   Outstanding Band Directors have always been attracted to the program that has been able to keep the program at an enviable level of performance.

Succession of Directors:
Paul Sell Dean Maxwell
Don Harris Tom Bibbey
Blaine McClary Dick Rischling
Assistants: Dave Rischling - Bill Rischling
                                        Dave Rischling

Highlights of Band program:

The Alliance Band has always been competitive at District Music Contest, receiving mostly Division I ratings throughout its history.  In recent years, under the direction of Dick Rischling, the band has grown to numbers often exceeding 150 members in the High School Band.  His Marching Bands have received all Division I ratings in marching competition.  The Junior High Band, with numbers in excess of 100, has also performed in competitive contests–primarily for criticism.  The annual “Old West Days” parade and field competition held annually at Scottsbluff has been the Western Nebraska site of the State Marching Contest.  Alliance has received a Division I every year since its inception.


Brief historical background

Andersen Middle School was built in 1986.  The first instrumental music teacher was Ron Austin.  He taught individual 6th, 7th, and 8th grade bands and jazz band (after school).  He was the band director through 2002 when he retired from MPS.

The Anderson band program has graded, curricular band during the day for grades 6, 7, and 8.  There are also two concert bands that are combined by grade levels:  The Combined Band (grades 7 and 8) and the select band (auditioned 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students).  These bands meet two mornings a week before school to prepare for concerts.  The concert bands perform six concerts per year.  The jazz band meets after school two times a week during the first semester and plays two in-school concerts and two community concerts. The three main chamber ensembles (Brass Choir, Woodwind Choir, and Percussion Ensemble) meet after school once a week and all begin, during the second semester, with preparation for Solo and Ensemble opportunities. The larger Chamber Music ensembles perform for 4 concerts a year during the second half of the year.  From 2005 and 2011 the commitment to Chamber Music in the Andersen program averages 30-40 soloists and 3-12 ensembles a year entered in solo and ensemble contests.  Music Theory is offered after school during the second semester.

Succession of Directors:
1986-2002 – Ron Austin 2004-present – Michelle Hall
2002-2004 – Dorothy Jacobi   

Highlights of the Band Program:

The Andersen Select Concert Band regularly participates in the Platteview Band Festival, Papillion Band Festival, NSBA Concert Band Festival and the Adventureland Band Festival in Iowa.  Between 2005 and 2011 the Andersen Select Concert Band has achieved Superior ratings at all band festivals.  In 2011 the band performed for the 75th Anniversary Conference of the Nebraska Music Educators Association.

Andersen has participated in the Millard Middle School Solo and Ensemble Festival since the inception of the event.

ARCHDIOCESE OF OMAHA Music in Catholic Schools (MCS)

Brief historical background:

Music in Catholic Schools (MCS) is a parent-paid band program under the director of the Catholic School Office, Omaha Archdiocese that provides band classes to students in grades 5-8 in 29 Omaha parochial schools (Catholic & Lutheran). The Superintendent of Schools, Omaha Archdioceses, along with a parent steering committee that become the first MCS Governing Board, started Music in Catholic Schools in 1979 when a predecessor company folded. Three full-time teachers and one 4/5 time administrator, all certified Nebraska Music Educators, serve 300 plus students in the program each year.  Most students have band classes twice a week, though the schools with 5 or fewer students normally have band class once a week to save costs of transportation for the teachers.

Because MCS serves so many schools where the numbers of students who participate in band are small, special events and activities are provided outside the school day to provide full band experiences.  Annual football and basketball pep band events are held with cooperating high schools.  Beginning Band Olympics is held each fall for first year students and their parents. Join-schools concerts are held in December and May.  A solo/ensemble festival is held in the spring, along with a jazz clinic for 7th and 8th graders at the end of the contest.  A one-day band clinic festival is held for all MCS students that includes sectional instruction and guest conductors for the large group rehearsals. This event concludes with a performance for both the Beginning Band (first year level students) and the Advanced Band (students in 2nd – 4th years of band classes).

Succession of Directors:
Administrators for MCS are Mrs. Barbara Sanders and Mrs. Debra Lund who were the first band teachers in 1979.  Other teachers for Music in Catholic Schools include, John Ludgate, Michelle Harris, Keith Hanson, Chris Stovall, Terry Vivona, Theresa Ryan, Leslie Janak, Karen Tangeman, Tom Beach, Lori Spears, Melissa Noel Dlaney, Karen Marble, Monette Jo, Paul Piskorski, Dan Irvin, Erika Hipsher, Charles Lipman, and Roger Thaden.

Highlights of the Band Program:

The premier group in the MCS program is the Honor Band.  The best students in grades 6-8 are selected each fall from those auditioning who are able to make the 1 ½ hour weekly commitment of an evening rehearsal.  The Honor Band rehearses for at least 9 weeks each semester, with MCS staff members sharing the conducting duties.  Before the regular rehearsals of the Honor Band, separate jazz band rehearsals are held for 30 minutes each week.  The Honor Band plays schools assembly concerts at various schools each of the two days of their concert tour in December and April, and they play formal evening concerts at least twice each year as well.  The Honor Band routinely performs an informal concert each semester at the New Cassel Retirement Center, and they have been regular guest performers at annual dinners and other special events as well.  The MCS Honor Band performed with the Nebraska Wind Symphony in 1999 as part of their 20th anniversary celebration and again in 2004 and 2009 to celebrate the 25th and 30th anniversary years of MCS.  Numerous compositions have been commissioned for the MCS Honor Band from several leading composers.



Brief historical background:

Aurora has had a history of outstanding bands beginning around the turn of the century.  A town band existed although not much has been known about the early days.  The modern era began with the arrival of Lee Mendyk who set a standard for bands for years to come.

Succession of High School Directors:
Lee Mendyk 1990-1992 - Kathy Dalby
1969-1980 - Mike Kulba 1992 - Rod Drews
1980-1984 - Bob Bebout  2001- Tom Hanson
1984-1986 - Bill Kellett 2001-2002 - Norm Sodomka
1986-1988 - Bruce Blanchard  2002-present - Dan Sodomka
1988-1990 - Ron Rickert  
Succession of Junior High School Directors:
1980-1984 - Mike Kulba 1991-1994     - Jeff James
1985-1990 - Jeff James 1994-Present - Kate Metzger
1990-1991 - Ann Dillow  

Highlights of Band Program:

Lee Mendyk had legendary Marching and Concert bands at Aurora.  Mike Kulba had legendary bands as well.  Bill Kellett came at the time the band was in a down cycle and immediately won a superior at the Pershing Marching Festival and District Music Contest.  Ron Rickert’s bands earned only superiors in marching and concert competition.  Kathy Dalby continued the tradition of excellence. Dan Sodomka’s bands have been exceptional in both marching and concert competition.


Brief historical background:

Aquinas has always had a strong Music Department and the marching shows have ranged from Classical to Pop and Rock music and then back again.

Aquinas opened its doors in Butler County in 1961.  There were 13 parishes that sent students to Aquinas High School.  Father Leander Kettler was the first band instructor at Aquinas.  Those same 13 parishes in Butler County populate the halls of Aquinas today.

Helen Ostdiek has been the Aquinas band instructor since the fall of 1996.  Ann Heerman, a 1985 graduate and teacher at Aquinas High School, has been the Flag Corps Instructor for the last 17 years.

Succession of Directors:
1961 to 1968  Fr. Leander Kettler  1986 to 1987 Ray Warden
1968 to 1974 Skip Kull 1987 to 1990 Lyman Novy
1974 to 1976 Randy Hlovec 1990 to 1994 John Franssen
1976 to 1981 Dennis Coleman 1994 to 1995 Chris Proskovec
1981 to 1981 Mr. Worm 1995 to1996 Ann Marie Sabaliauskas
1982 to 1986 Joe Dolsak  1996 to present Helen Ostdiek

Highlights of Band Program:

The High School Band has received a I rating at District Music Contest for the last 6 years. The jazz band rehearses once a week and starts after marching band competitions are done.  The band has traditionally gone on a trip every four years.  In 2011 the band traveled to Dallas and San Antonio, Texas. 


Brief Historical background:
The Beatrice High School Band has for years enjoyed strong support from parents, school administration, Board of education, and the Beatrice community as a whole.  The band has traveled to Disney World every three or four years since 1984.  Prior to these trips were two trips to Nebraskaland Days in North Platte and several trips to Worlds of Fun in Kansas City. The band, ensembles, and soloists have consistently scored well in District Music Contests.  Other instrumental music teachers who contributed to the success of the high school band as middle school or elementary instructors were Maxine Stone, Joan Davison, Clay Collier, Melanie Froberg, Barbara Guiterrez, Bob Person, and Dan Emke.

All directors of the Beatrice High School Band have been directors of the community band in Beatrice.  Louis Burkel and Bob Person have directed the Beatrice Municipal Band which was funded by the city and consisted of adult and high school players who received a small stipend for each of eight concerts in the summer.  When city funding was no longer available, the Gage County Historical Society took over sponsorship of the band and it became a volunteer organization with a paid director and fewer concerts each summer.


Succession of Directors:
1952 – 1965 – Louis Burkel 2007 – 2011 – Nathan LeFeber
1965 – 1988 – Bob Person 2011 - Craig Mathis
1988 – 2007 – Bruce Greenwell  

Highlights of Band Program:

The Bandorama final concert has long be a highlight of the year for the band program. It was held for years in the Beatrice City Auditorium and included 5th grade band, 6th grade band, 7th grade band, 8th grade band, (all seated on the floor) and the Senior High Band ending the concert from the state.  More than 400 young musicians were involved in the concert.  After the new high school was built, the Bandorama Concert was moved to the Hevelone Fine Arts Auditorium and was divided into two parts.


Brief historical background:

The Instrumental Music Program in the Bellevue Public Schools has had a long tradition of excellence prompted by many very fine and dedicated teachers.  Prior to the fall of 1977 Bellevue had one high school and two junior highs.  Rod Schmidt was the last director at Bellevue High School.  He started there in 1974, moving from Falls City High School.  His bands bands were consistently outstanding.  His marching band competed in the Harvest of Harmony in Grand Island, the Pershing Marching Contest, and the Plattsmouth Marching Contest and received consistent Division I ratings. Rod is unique in many respects as he credited the students with all his success. In 1977 Bellevue High School became Bellevue East High School.  Dave Young became the director at Bellevue East, moving there from Schuyler Central High School.  Dave continued the tradition of excellence set by Rod and had continued success until retiring from Bellevue East.

Succession of Directors:
John Scheuth Jack Wells
Roger Hudson/Bill Sprague Rod Schmidt
Duane Stehlik David Young 1977-1997, 1999
Chuck Sargent    Scott Loftesness 1998-1999
Ron Hardin 2000-2014
Patrick McCarty 2014-Present

Highlights of Band Program;

Bellevue East High School performed at NSBA in 1978, 1980, 1982, 1986, and 1994.  Bellevue East has attended the Red River Exhibition in Winnipeg, the Portland Rose Parade, the rededication of the Statue of Liberty in 1986, Disney World in Orlando, the Fiesta Bowl Field Competition and Parade, and Washington D.C.

Rod Schmidt has served as NSBA President, is a recipient of the Don Lentz Outstanding Bandmaster Award, is a member of the Nebraska Music Educators Hall of Fame.

Dave Young has served as NSBA President, is a recipient of the Don Lentz Outstanding Bandmaster Award, is a member of the Nebraska Music Educators Hall of Fame, was awarded the NBA Outstanding Jazz Educators Award and is a recipient of the NBA Citation of Excellence award


Brief historical background:

The Bellevue West High School Band has been in existence since the fall of 1977 when the school first opened.  Rod Schmidt chose to move from Bellevue East to Bellevue West and began the tradition of excellence that the school has enjoyed.  Rod’s bands were a consistent division I winner at Harvest of Harmony, the Plattsmouth and NSBA competitions and the concert band received consistent Division I ratings at District Music Contest.  He also started a Jazz Program that could be competitive with other Jazz programs at various festivals and competitions. Over that time the band has steadily developed in size and quality and has developed into one of the state’s premier programs.  The program now consists of a wind ensemble, a symphonic band, a 9th grade band, three jazz bands, and the marching band.  Small ensembles and solo performance is a fundamental aspect of the program.  Rod started the program but it has been a great source of satisfaction to him to see Byron Braasch continue his success and then passed it on to Kyle Haugen who has continued where Byron left off.

Succession of Directors:
1977 - 1988 - Rod Schmidt
1988 - 2007 - Byron Braasch
2007 – Present – Kyle Haugen

Highlights of Band Program:

The band has traveled extensively throughout its history, entering competitions in Florida, Washington D.C., Colorado, Iowa, Missouri and South Dakota - The marching band has earned superior ratings in all competitions they have entered, plus numerous sweepstakes awards - The concert band has consistently earned superior ratings at District Music Contest  - The jazz band consistently earns superior ratings in all competitions they enter - Numerous students are selected for the all-State groups every year - The marching band has twice competed on a national level in the Bands of America festivals in Indianapolis, qualifying for the semi-finals each time.


Brief historical background:

The early program in Blair was an orchestra.  1919 was the first mention of a band.  However, only solo appearances are mentioned–no formal band concert.  All that is mentioned from 1920-1928 is an orchestra. In 1929 a high school band was organized for the first time by Kenneth C. DeGroff.  It played for home football games.  The band went to Omaha and received a second place.  It went to a contest at Nebraska Wesleyan and competed with some of the best bands in Nebraska and lost the “cup” by only two points.  In 1930 the band had 34 members. In 1934 they went to music contest for the first time.  In 1939 a junior high band was organized for the first time and twirlers were added to the band.  Uniforms for the band were purchased in 1942.  By 1950 the band, under the direction of Al Rembold, had grown to 57 members, requiring new uniforms. In 1976, under the direction of Jerry Kinney, the band participated in its first marching contest. 

Succession of Directors: (High School)
1914-1915 - Mr. Swihart    1944-1946 - Paul Neve & W.C. Gifford
1915-1916 - Ray Gates 1947-1948 - Martin Edwards
1916-1922 - Ethel Mead  1948-1975 - Al Rembold
1922-1924 - Wanda Cook  1976-1980 - Jerry Kinney
1924-1925 - Leona Steffes  1980-1981 - Roger Thaden
1925-1928 - Mrs. G.F. Brown 1981-1985 - Polly Colony
1928-1929 - Mrs. P.L. Moore 1985-1988 - Bill Reed
1929-1934 - Kenneth C. DeGroff 1988-1990 - Eric Fahrlander
1934-1938 - Harry Langley 1990-1992 - Paul Ramp
1938-1942 - Ross B. Hanks 1992- 2000 - Andy Sorensen
1942-1943 - Leslie Marks  2000 - 2001 - Sara Boeka
1943-1944 - C.J. Beuck 2001- present - Jeff Mount
Junior High School:
Dates not certain on Junior High School: Succession as follows: Roger Thaden, Dee Bradt, Karen Gengenbach, Cindy Kauk, Linda Donohue, Susan Saker (elementary), Micelle Hall (elementary), Sara Boeka (elementary)

Highlights of Band Program:

Attended District Music Contest in 1938 for the first time and have continued to attend ever since.  Prior to 1948 the band began to attend area marching and concert contests.  Under Al Rembold, largely due to his longevity with the band program, the band began to grow in numbers, added a summer program, emphasized the pep band, and appeared at many area band events.  Some of these included the State Fair, Dana College homecoming parade, Ak-Sar-Ben, Washington County music activities, the Omaha Centennial “Parade of Lights”, band day at UNL, the Augustana College Band Festival, and participated in many local events.

In 1976, Jerry Kinney entered the band in its first marching contest and marched in the bicentennial parade in Philadelphia.   In 1977 and 1978 the band performed at Dakota Days in Rapid City South Dakota, captured first place in Missouri Valley at the Goose Calling Marching Contest, placed 2nd in the Southwest Iowa Jamboree and the Applejack Festival Parades and participated in the Tulip Festival in Orange City, IA.  The band played in the Shrine Bowl parade, the State Fair, won 1st place in the Wayne State Homecoming parade, and won the outstanding band award at the VEISHA parade at Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa.

Under Roger Thaden the band performed for the first time at Pershing, received 1st place in the Applejack Festival and participated in Viking Days in Blair.  Polly Colony continued many of the same activities but also entered Harvest of Harmony in Grand Island, winning her class each time.  The band also received a Division 1 at Worlds of Fun in Kansas City.  Under the direction of Bill Reed the band took a trip to Florida, was named the outstanding Band at Harvest of Harmony, and received a Division 1 at District Music Contest.  During Eric Fahrlander’s tenure the band entered the Worlds of Fun competition in Kansas City, Under the leadership of Paul Ramp the band traveled to Florida, received a superior at District Music Contest, and the Junior High Band, under the direction of Linda Donohue, was selected to perform at NSBA.

Under the direction of Andy Sorensen the band performed at NSBA, continued to participate in the Elkhorn Band Olympics and District Music Contest, performed at EBO, at the Plattsmouth Marching Competition, and led the parade at Disney World in Florida.  Andy was named the “Jack Snider Outstanding Young Band DirectorThe band continued to participate or compete in most of the area events.  Andy died unexpectedly of a heart attack while jogging on the second day of school 2000.    Joe Chapman took the band for 5 weeks,marching at the State Fair, and won the Applejack competition in Nebraska City.  Sara Boeka took over the band for the remainder of the school year.

Under Jeff Mount the band marched for all home games, participated in the State Fair, received 2nd place in the Applejack Parade, and marched in the Rivercity Roundup Parade in Omaha.  The band participated in two jazz competitions.  The Otte-Blair Middle School Band performed at NSBA and Linda Donohue received the NSBA Donald Lentz Outstanding Bandmaster Award.  The high school band traveled to Disney World in May of 2002.


Brief historical background:

As early as 1892 there was a city band known as the Cornet Band, led by Rudolph Chriscilles.  There were twelve men and two women in the band. A group known as “Boost Bloomfield Beautiful” was instrumental in building a band stand in the city square in 1912. The Bloomfield Boys Band was organized in 1927 and a school band was added in 1928, organized by John Weatherhogg.

Succession of Directors:
1927-? - C. B. Stuart 1952-1957 - Robert Harvey
1928-1929 - John Weatherhogg      1957-1959 - Gerald Bacon
1929-- B. L. Speaker    1959-1964 - Clarence Carson
1937-- Mr. Gunderson 1964-1965 - Ernest Kirkpatrick
1939-1943 - Mr. Tollefson  1965-1966 - George Barlow
1946-1947 - Earl Jenkins 1966-1970 - Lowell Kimball
1947-1948 - C. L. Beuck 1970-1974 - Dan Praeuner
1948-1950 - Walter Spade 1974-1976 - Wendell Fossum
1950-1951 - Vernon Tarrell 1976-2001 - Randy Neuharth
2001-2012 - Andrew Brase 2012 -

Highlights of Band Program:

In 1927 the high school band played for President Coolidge in the Black Hills. 



Brief Historical Background:

The town of Chambers came into existence in 1884, and by the 1890's there was a town band organized which ended in the 1930's due to the depression.  Bands were started in the Chambers public school system in the late 1970's by music teacher Cecil Anderson and followed by Bernie Wilson.

Succession of Directors:
Cecil Anderson  
Bernie Wilson  
Duane DeVries

Highlights of Band Program:

Since the arrival of Duane DeVries, the band has consistently been one of the finest small school bands in the state of Nebraska.  The band has been able to compete against AA schools and be competitive in parade and field marching competition.

The marching and concert bands have enjoyed unparalleled success and have been the recipients of extensive awards and recognition.  In 2004 Duane DeVries was recipient of the Donald A. Lentz Outstanding Bandmaster Award.


Brief Historical Background:

The Chase County Band Program has an illustrious history.

Succession of Directors:  
1945 - Mr. K. D. Moore 1980 – 1983 - Jeff Bogard
1947 – Mr. Robert Garretson 1984 – 1985 – Mr. Jeff McQuiston
1949 – 1951 – Mr. Milton Nunamaker     1986 – 1987 – Mr. David Walcker
1952 – 1956 – Mr. James Sewrey 1987 – 1988 – Mr. Doug Gibson
1957 – 1959 – Mr. E. Mitchell 1989 – 1996 – Mr. Tom Baker
1960 – 1962 – Mr. Robert Harrison 1997 – 2001 – Mr. James Brewer
1962 – 1966 – Mr. Dan Jepson 2001 – 2003 – Mr. Matt Strawn
1966 – 1979 – Mr. James Braag  2003 – 2008 – Mr. Richard Munson
2009 – Present – Mrs. Agnes Strand  

Highlights of Band Program:

The Chase County Band Program has had a number of accomplishments notable directors throughout its history.  James Sewrey was a noted percussionist and left Imperial to join Ludwig Drum Company to serve as its Educational Director.

The band program grew in importance and quality during the tenure of James Braag.  He had a large, competitive Marching Band which was the pride and joy of the student body.  Everyone wanted to be in band and even the football players dressed to march with the band at halftime.  He also had quality Concert Bands, being a consistent Division I Band at District Music Contest and the annual SPVA contest where the band was awarded “Best in Class”.

With the departure of James Braag, Mr. Jeff Bogard became Director of Bands and continued the level of excellence established by Mr. Braag.  Unfortunately, with the departure of Mr. Bogard the band program has seen a succession of Band Directors.

During Mr. James Brewer’s tenure as Band Director, his 6th grade band was selected to perform for the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association’s annual convention.  (A presentation that was exceedingly well-received)  Mr. Munson took his 6th grade band to Elitch Gardens to play a concert in 2006.  The band and jazz band continue to perform at numerous events within the community.


Succession of Directors:  
1958 - 1996 - Duane Booth 2005 - 2006 - Jacob Varvel
1996 - 1997 - Brenda Monson  2006 - 2008 - Valerie Retlaf
1997 - 1998 - Tiffany Berg 2008 - 2010 – Ken Thoendel
1998 - 2004 - Martin Antholz  2010 – present – Melissa Wortmann
2004 - 2005 - A. J. Bowen  

Highlights of Band Program:

Under Duane Booth’s leadership the Creighton Band became one of the finest bands in Northern Nebraska. He developed outstanding bands but one of the greatest strengths was the quality of musicianship developed in his students.  Many of his students were accepted for the All-State band and numerous Honor Bands throughout Nebraska.


Brief historical background:

Dawes Middle School opened in 1948. Dawes officially closed in the spring of 2009.  In the fall of 2009 it opened as “Goodrich at Dawes” and most of the Goodrich staff moved to what had been Dawes while Goodrich was being renovated. Shelly Lenz was the director at Dawes through the spring of 2011. Goodrich moved out of Dawes and simultaneously the LPS school board voted to reopen Dawes.

Succession of Directors:
1948 - Gene Sundene ?    - Harold Osbon
1985 - Jim Schultz (Arch Hill co-taught with Jim Schultz a few years) 1998 - Arch Hill   
2011 - Dick Marolf


Brief historical background:
Doniphan did not have a full-time music director until Juan Huss Frausto was hired to develop a strong band
program.  He had a previous history of success at Venango, NE. Under Juan Huss the band grew to about 80 students.  In his first year the band received a Division I at the District Music Contest.  Prior to this Hastings College music students were hired on a part-time basis to direct the band.  Mrs. Harrell taught the vocal music until the fall of 1955 when Duane E. Johnson directed both programs
Succession of Directors:
1953-1957 – Duane E. Johnson, Jack Moore, Juan Huss Frausto, Mark Walth
1993-1999 – Chad Kyes
1999-present – Don Alcorn

Highlights of the Band Program:

The band was fitted for new uniforms in 1999 and again in 2011.  The band took music trips to Dallas in 2002, Florida in 2006, and Chicago in 2010.  Grand Island hosted the State Fair for the first time in 2010 with the Doniphan band marching in the inaugural year of this event.  The music department has hosted and annual themed Dinner Show each February since 2001.


Succession of Directors:
1960-1962 - Rudolph Srb  1987-1989 - Dick Keiser
1962-1973 - Herbert Kiaman 1989-1996 - Scott Thompson
1973-1975 - Neil Bachman  1996-2000 - Doug Hauserman
1975-1987 - Steve Baker 2000-2010 - Dr. Michelle Bluford
  2010-present – Matt Rom

Highlights of Band Program:

The band made frequent trips as follows:  Dakota Days Band Festival, Rapid City in 1977; Festival of the Rockies, Estes Park in 1979; the Red River Exhibition in Winnepeg, Canada in 1981; Florida in 1983, 1985, and 1990; California in 1987 and 1993 and the Independence Day Parade in Washington D.C. in 1996.


Brief historical background:


Succession of Directors:
2010 - Dr. Michelle Bluford

Highlights of Band Program:

The band participates in all local parades, performs half-time shows, provides pep bands for athletic events; perform a Veteran’s Day program, Holiday program, Combined Concert with the 8th graders from Elkhorn Valley View and Elkhorn Ridge, Spring Program, does community outreach, participated in the BOCH and Nebraska Wesleyan Honor Band, and participate in District Music Contest. The band hosts the annual Elkhorn Band Olympics which is a solo and ensemble contest for freshman and sophomores. The band has traveled to Chicago, New York and in 2015 will travel to Memphis. These trips have an educational focus, meaning that we do clinics with area master teachers and then experience as much of the local history as we can.


Brief historical background:

Band as it exists today began with a co-op program with Farnam in 1991-92.  Prior to this each school had its own band.

Succession of Directors:  
1950-1956 - Mr. Bassinger     1978-1979 - Mr. Alonzo
1956-1962 - Garrett Fritzen 1979-1983 - Brenda Lambert
1962-1964 - Marilyn Peterson 1983-1985 - Linda Grabenstein
1964-1967 - Mr. Kite  1985-1987 - Denise Rasmussen
1967-1970 - Glen Sawyer   1987-1997 - Linda Grabenstein
1970-1972 - Linda Grabenstein 1997-1998 - Tim Lockwood
1972-1974 - Bob Britt  1998-1999 - Joe Hardin
1974-1976 - Wendy Carskaden 1999-2004 - David Moore
1976-1978 - Brenda Lambert 2004-2005 – Carol Money
2005-2012 Melissa Shepherd 2012-present – Renae Jorgensen

Highlights of Band Program:

The band participates in all local parades, performs half-time shows, provides pep bands for athletic events; perform a Veteran’s Day program, Christmas program, Spring Program, local churches, senior center,
conference clinics, and participate in District Music Contest.



Brief historical background

Fairbury has had a long history of support for instrumental music.  Town bands in the early part of the 20th century performed for many functions.  In recent years the Fairbury High School Band has taken over the role of providing music for civic functions.

Succession of Directors:  
1937-1971 – Kenneth Foust  1985-1986 – Charlene Brown
1971-1975 – Bob Beetley    1986-1987 – Rod Drews
1975-1979 – Russ Workman  1987-1978 – Bob Beetley
1979-1983 – Roland Barrett 1988-2012 – Ted Luebbe
1983-1985 – Larry Mac Taggart 2012-present – Maureen Beck

Highlights of Band Program:

Fairbury has enjoyed earning many honors.  Over the years and under many directors the band has earned Excellent and Superior ratings at District Music Contests.  Kenneth Foust was inducted into the Nebraska Music Educators Association Hall of Fame.  Roland Barrett and Larry Mac Taggart have become prolific and successful composers.  In 2008 the Fairbury High School Band commissioned and premiered “Rock Creek Adventure” based on the nearby Rock Creek Pony Express and Oregon Trail stop.  Larry Mac Taggart wrote the selection and was on hand to direct the performance.


Brief historical background:

Geneva has for many years emphasized the teaching of music in the public school.  Apparently the first organized music program in the school was started by the Geneva Woman’s Club, which hired Miss Claire Owens, later Dr. Claire Owens of Exeter, to organize a class in harmony in 1916.  Professor H. R. Grant was secured to organize a school orchestra and band the same year. 

Paul W. Curtiss directed the first school band at Geneva in 1925.  He continued to direct the school bands until a few weeks before his death in 1951.  In May, 1951, Herman L. Larsen was hired as the first full-time instrumental instructor in the Geneva schools.

Succession of Directors:  
1925-1951 - Paul W. Curtiss 1976-1979 - Larry Nunns
1951-1971 - Herman L. Larsen 1979-1988 - Ken Headlee
1971-1976 - Carl Neubauer  1988-2006 - Ron Rickert
2006-2012 - Todd Cook 2012-present – Ben Kay Skinner

Highlights of Band Program:

The band program has a history of consistent superiors in concert and a marching competition.  With the arrival of Ron Rickert the band has reached a level equal to any school in the state.


Brief historical background:

The Fort Calhoun Pioneer Band is a fairly young organization.  A part-time teacher was hired in 1971 to start the program.  However, an illness forced an early resignation and that fall Ken Stroupe was hired to
become the band’s first director.  He started with about twenty fifth and sixth graders as a nucleus. By the following year the program had more than doubled.  Under Stroupe’s direction the band continued to grow in numbers and won several awards for parade marching as well as some Superior ratings at District Music
Contest.  During his latter years the band was comprised of seventh through twelfth graders as well as some of the better sixth graders.

In 1977 Mr. Jones became Director of Bands.  The Band Department was divided into three levels, elementary, junior high and senior high. for all activities except marching band.  The Junior and senior high
continued to be combined for marching until the fall of 1981.

Succession of Directors:
1971 - 1977 - Ken Stroupe
1977 - present - Mark Jones

Highlights of Band Program:

Mark Jones introduced competitive marching to Ft. Calhoun in 1981 and earned a superior at Malcom and an excellent at Pershing - The first out-of-state performance was in 1980 at Worlds of Fun.  In 1984 the band competed in the Red River International Band Festival, receiving 3rd place in their class.   Other trips to this festival were to follow with the band earning a second place finish in Concert and Marching competition. Other awards have included open class winners of Omaha Septemberfest parade, winners of River City Roundup Parade, and  a third place sweepstakes award from the Omaha Public Schools Marching Invitational.

The band traveled to represent Nebraska at the Freedom Festival Parade in Philadelphia and the National Independence day parade in Washington D. C.  The band returned two years later and won the Championship Trophy in DC,  performing at the White House Ellipse and the Independence Day Parade in Fairfax, Virginia.  The 1984-85 band traveled to Orlando, Florida for the Musicfest Orlando Concert Band Festival.  In 1995-1996 the band received its first Superior at the NSBA State Marching Contest.  There are many other awards that are too numerous to mention.

The marching and concert band has become a consistent winner of superior ratings in all competitions.  In addition, the band has had large numbers of students in All-State and all the various honor groups around the state and has students represent Nebraska in National Honor Bands.



Brief historical background:

Music was first taught in the Franklin Academy (1881-1922), the Dupee Music Hall being the music department’s building.  The Dupee Music Hall is the only remaining building from the original Academy and is listed on the Nation Register of Historic Places.  Several alumni of the Franklin Academy served in World War I and later graduates of Franklin High School served in World War II. Personal accounts from Franklin residents stat that the band was very dedicated to recognizing alumni who were serving in the wars and often staged performance of patriotic music for deployments and homecomings of the servicemen.

Succession of Directors:  
1891-1892 – Linda Thompson 1978-1979 – Rosalie Goldberg
1893-1895 – Ed M. Hussong  1979-1981 – Stuart Wilson
1896-1900 – Della M. Smith 1981-1989 – Virginia and Larry Swanson
1900-1907 – Fannie Conkling  1988-1995 – Larry Rathbun
1943-1951 – G. L. Fritzen 1995-1999 – Scott Schneider
1951-1952 – Mr. McKenney 1999-2001 – Andrew Spontansky
1951-1953 – Marela Ireland 2001-2005 – Sharon Klein
1954-1955 – Tom McVay 2005-2006 – Justin Zaleski
1957-1964 – Darrel Hart 2006-2008 – Lindsay Lund
1964-1968 – Steve Lake 2008-2010 – Marty Antholz
1969-1971 – Larry Johnson 2010-present – Marcus Price

Highlights of the Band Program:

The band has travelled throughout the Midwest, performing in places like Denver, Kansas City, and St. Louis. They also travelled to perform at Walt Disney World, Orlando.


Brief historical background:

The Fremont H.S. Band began in the fall of 1921.  The first band consisted of 30 boys who met every day before school.  The first concert was presented on March 23, 1922.  Carl W. Hawkinson, the local music dealer, served as the first director from 1921 until 1926.

Succession of Directors  
1926-1934 - Bernard Nevin 1970 - 1977 - John Bowen
1934 - 1964 - Walter Olsen   1977 - 1985 - Don Johnson 
1964 - 1965 - Byron Havlicek 1985 - 1988 - Doug Keiser
1965 - 1969 - Stuart Buell 1988 - present - Brian Anderson
1969 - 1970 - Interim Directors - Ed Hanna, Robert Olsen, Dr. Charles Clausen  

Highlights of Band Program:

Walt Olsen - 30 years as director - brought state-wide acclaim to Fremont band.

John Bowen - Band named sweepstakes winners at Tri-State Festival in Enid, Oklahoma.

Don Johnson - Concert at 1982 NSBA Convention and the 1985 NMEA Convention - two appearances at the Fiesta Bowl parade and field competition in Phoenix, AZ - brought renowned composers and soloists to Fremont.

Doug Keiser - Bluebonnet Bowl

Brian Anderson - Superior ratings at festivals and competitions, three Walt Disney World Resort appearances, Concert Band and Jazz Band Grand Champions and Top Performing Ensemble of the Great Southern Contest of Champions in 1992 - Among 16 bands to perform at the first annual State Concert Band Festival in 1994 - performed for the NMEA Convention in 1995 and in 1996 performed “Platte River Run”, commissioned piece of Larry MacTaggart.

Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom Performance April, 1998
NMEA Performance November,1998
MENC North Central Division Performance, Cincinnati, Ohio February, 1999
Silicon Valley Bowl Halftime Performance January, 2001
Commission and World Premier Performance of American Psalm by Jay Glibert November, 2001
Nebraska Public Radio broadcast of performance of American Psalm November, 2001
GRAMMY Foundation Signature School Award for scholastic music excellence 2003
NSBA Performance Clinic "Effective Rehearsal Techniques" March, 2006
New York City Performance Tours in 2005 and 2009
San Francisco Performance Tour 2013



Brief historical background:

The Fremont Junior High Band program has had three directors in the entire history of the school, Walt Olsen, followed by his son, Bob Olsen, followed by Steve Steager. The Fremont band program has had a fine reputation for excellence for many years. Under Bob Olsen, the Fremont junior high band performed for the NSBA convention in 1964 and again in 1981.

Bob Olsen received the Donald A Lentz Award and has been inducted into the NMEA Hall of Fame.

Succession of Directors  
Walt Olsen 1989 - Bob Olsen 1989-Present---Steve Steager

Highlights of Band Program:

Walt Olsen - 30 years as director - brought state-wide acclaim to Fremont band.

Fremont Junior high became Fremont Middle School in 2001, when the 9th graders became part of Fremont Senior High. Under director Steve Steager, the middle school “Tiger” band performed for the NSBA convention in 1996 and again in 2010. The Middle School Jazz Band performed at the NMEA Convention in 2003. The middle school Jazz program has earned several trophies at the northeast jazz festival in Norfolk, usually placing 1st or 2nd . Several students have been members of the NSBA 8th grade all state band. Steve Steager served as President of NSBA in 2012-2013.


Brief historical background:

Grand Island Public Schools is a public school district located in the city of Grand Island, Nebraska. The district serves all of Grand Island. The school district has one high school, three middle schools, and fourteen elementary schools. Grand Island Senior High School is classified by NSAA as a Class A school:

Succession of Directors:  
1990-1997: Eric Farhlander 1997-2000: Matt Sheppard
2000-2008: James S. Kordik 2008-2011: Louie Echardt
2011-Present: Amy Rischling  

Highlights of the Band Program:

Grand Island Senior High Band Department Results

Islander Band Results for 2007-2008
Harvest  of Harmony Competition
2nd  Place Trophy  I 9 bands  in Class AA
3rd  Over-All  Score in Parade Trophy  (94 I 100) 3rd  I 90

Field Show: Superior  Rating and Trophy

Lincoln  Public Schools  Marching Band Invitational
Field Show:
Superior  Rating and Trophy
Auxiliary: Excellent  Rating

N.S.B.A.  State Marching Band Contest
Field Show: Superior  Rating and Trophy

'Islander' Jazz Band Festival
Superior  Rating - Stage Band & Jazz/Rock Ensemble

N.S.B.A. Academic Excellence Award Plaque

Hastings College  Jazz Festival
Superior+ Rating and Plaque- Jazz/Rock Ensemble
Superior  Rating and Plaque - Stage Band N.S.B.A.  concert  Band Festival
Symphonic Band -Clinic/Evaluation - Plaque

District  Music Contest
Superior+ Rating and Plaque- Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Islander Band Results for 2006-2007
Harvest  of Harmony  Competition
1st Place Trophy I 9 bands in Class  AA
High Over-All  Score in Parade  Trophy  (97 I 100) 1st I 83

Field Show: Superior  Rating and Trophy

Omaha Public Schools Marching Band Invitational
Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy
Auxiliary: Excellent Rating

N.S.B.A. State Marching Band Contest
Field Show: Excellent Rating and Trophy

Presidential Rallv Performance for President G.W. Bush:
Invited to perform at the Heartland Events Center

'Islander' Jazz Band Festival
Superior Rating - Stage Band & Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Hastings College Jazz Festival
Superior Rating - Jazz/Rock Ensemble
Superior Rating - Stage Band

N.S.B.A. Concert Band Festival
Symphonic Band - Clinic/Evaluation - Plaque

District Music Contest - Jazz/Rock Ensemble
Superior Rating and Plaque - Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Islander Band Results for 2005-06

Norfolk LA VITSEF Parade/Field Competition
1st Place Trophy in Class AA (94 I 100 pts.)
Field Show:
Superior Rating and Trophy (88 I 100 pts.)
Norfolk Lions LAVITSEF Traveling Sweepstakes Trophy

Harvest of Harmony Competition
1st Place Trophy I 9 bands in Class AA

High Over-All Score in Parade Trophy (97 I 100) - 1st I 83
Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy

Lincoln High LINKS Marching Band Contest
Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy
Auxiliary: Excellent Rating
Best Over-All  Drum Major Trophy:
Stephanie Koch, Mark Kranz, Caitlin Schleicher
3rd Place Class AA
Over-All  3rd Place Trophy  (88.04 I 2nd - 88.7I 1st  - 89.35)

N.S.B.A.  State Marching  Band Contest
Field Show: Superior  Rating and Trophy  (4-peat!)

'Islander' Jazz Band Festival
Superior  Rating - Stage Band & Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Hastings College Jazz Festival
Superior Rating - Jazz/Rock Ensemble
Superior  Rating - Stage Band

N.S.B.A.  Concert  Band Festival
Symphonic Band - Clinic/Evaluation - Plaque

N.S.B.A. Academic Excellence Award Plaque

District  Music Contest  - Jazz/Rock Ensemble
Superior  Rating and Plaque - Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Islander Band Results for 2004-05

Harvest  of Harmony  Competition
Parade: 1st Place Trophy I 7 bands in Class AA & The High Over-All  Score in Parade  Trophy  (97/100)  - 1st I 83
Field Show: Superior  Rating and Trophy

Lincoln  High LINKS Marching  Band Contest
Field Show:
Superior  Rating and Trophy
Auxiliary:  Superior  Rating and Trophy
Best Over-All  Drum Major Trophy:
Stephanie Koch, Mark Kranz, Laura Stie)lke

Pride of the Plains Marching  Band Championships
1st Place Trophy  Class AA
Best Over-All  Trophy  (99.5 pts.)
Best Over-All Field Show Trophy (99.05 pts.) Best Over-All Auxiliary Award Trophy
Best Over-All Brass Section Award Trophy
Best Over-All Drum Line Award Trophy
Sweepstakes Award Trophy for highest combined Parade/Field score. (198.55/200 pts.)

N.S.B.A. State Marching Band Contest
Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy (3-peat!)

Mayor's Proclamation:
Week of November 22 was; Grand Island Senior High Islander Band Week

'Islander' Jazz Band Festival
Superior Rating - Stage Band
Superior Rating - Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Hastings College Jazz Festival
Superior Rating - Jazz/Rock Ensemble & Stage Band

N.S.B.A. Concert Band Festival
Symphonic Band - Clinic/Evaluation - Plaque

N.S.B.A. Academic Excellence Award Plaque

District Music Contest - Jazz/Rock Ensemble
Superior Rating and Plaque - Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Islander Band Results for 2003-04

Harvest of Harmony Competition ..
2nd I 6 in Class AA
2nd I 90 bands Over-All
Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy

Lincoln High LINKS Marching Band Contest
Field Show:
Superior Rating and Trophy
Auxiliary: Superior Rating and Trophy
Best Over-All Drum Line Trophy
Best Over-All Drum Major Trophy
             Best Over-All Runner-Up Trophy (2nd/28, by .075!)
Lincoln Public Schools Marching Band Invitational
Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy
Auxiliary: Superior Rating and Trophy

N.S.B.A. State Marching Band Contest
Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy

N.S.B.A. Academic Excellence Award

N.S.B.A. State Concert Band Festival Award Plaque

Islander Jazz Band Festival
Jazz/Rock Ensemble: Superior Rating and Plaque
Stage Band: Superior Rating and Plaque

Hastings College Jazz Band Festival Superior Rating - Jazz/Rock Ensemble Superior Rating -Stage Band

District Music Contest
Superior Rating and Plaque - Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Islander Band Results for 2002-03

Harvest of Harmony Competition
2nd Place Runner-Up Trophy (95 I 100 pts.)
2nd out of 85 Bands Over-All

Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy •

Lincoln High LINKS Marching Band Competition
Field Show: Superior Rating & Trophy
Auxiliary Award: Superior Color Guard Trophy

Plum Creek Marching Band Festival-Lexington
Superior Rating and Trophy (99/100 points!) Best Over-All Color Guard Trophy
Best Over-All Drum Majors Trophy
Field Show:
Superior Rating and Trophy

N.S.B.A. Marching Band Contest
Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy

'Islander' Jazz Band Festival
Superior Rating - Stage Band
Superior Rating - Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Hastings College Jazz Festival
Superior Rating - Jazz/Rock Ensemble

N.S.B.A. Concert Band Festival
Symphonic Band - Clinic I Evaluation - Plaque

District Music Contest
Superior Rating and Plaque - Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Islander Band Results for 2001-02

UN - Kearney Band Day Parade
1st Place Class AA Parade Trophy
Best Over-All Color Guard Trophy
Sweepstakes Trophy- 1st out of 40 bands. [554/600 possible pts.] Drum Majors Over-All 2nd Place (by 1 point!)

Harvest of Harmony
Parade: 4th Place in Class AA & Top 10 List w/ 4th/90 bands Over-All
Field: Superior Field Trophy

Lincoln Public Schools Marching Contest
Superior Field Trophy
Superior Color Guard Trophy

N.S.B.A. Marching Band Contest
Excellent Rating and Trophy (3.85 pts. from a Superior)

'Islander' Jazz Band Festival
Excellent Rating - Stage Band
Superior Rating (1-1-1)- Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Northeast Jazz Festival
Superior Rating (I-l-l) I 4th Place Trophy- Jazz/Rock Ensemble

Hastings College Jazz Festival
Superior Rating - Jazz/Rock Ensemble

District Music Contest
Superior Rating and Plaque - Jazz/Rock Ensemble
Superior Rating Plaque - Symphonic Band

Islander Band Results for 2000-01

Columbus Discoverers Parade/Field Competition
Parade: 4th place
Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy

Harvest of Harmony Parade/Field Competition
·6th Place Class AA
6th place Over-All

Field Show: Superior Rating and Trophy

Lexington Plum Creek Marching Band Festival
Superior Rating and Trophy

Field Show:
Superior Rating and Trophy Best Over-All Drum Line Best Over-All Color Guard Best Over-All Drum Majors

N.S.B.A. Marching Band Contest
Excellent Rating and Trophy

Northeast Jazz Band Festival
Excellent Rating

Hastings College Jazz Festival
Superior Rating - Jazz/Rock Ensemble

District Music Contest
Superior Rating and Plaque - Jazz/Rock Ensemble
Superior Rating - Symphonic Band

Harvest of Harmony Parade Results
Bands Directed by Mr. Kordik

*2007 2nd Place Class AA Grand Island Sr. High (3rd Place Over-All)

*2006 1st Place Class AA Grand Island  Sr. High (1st Place Over-All)

*2005 1st Place Class AA Grand Island Sr. High (1st Place Over-All)

*2004 1st Place Class AA Grand Island Sr. High (1st Place Over-All)

*2003 2nd Place Class AA Grand Island Sr. High (2nd Place Over-All)

*2002 2nd Place Class AA Grand Island Sr. High (2nd Place Over-All)

2001 4th Place Class AA Grand Island Sr. High (4th Place Over-All)

2000 6th Place Class AA Grand Island Sr. High (6th Place Over-All)

*1999 1st Place Class A York H.S. (3rd Place Over-All)

*1998 2nd Place Class A York H.S. (5th Place Over-All)

*1997 1st Place Class A York H.S. (3rd Place Over-All)

1996 4th Place Class A York  H.S. (7th Place Over-All)

1995 3rd Place Class A York H.S. (6th Place Over-All)

*1994 2nd Place Class A York H.S. (4th Place Over-All)

1993 4th Place Class A York H.S. (6th Place Over-All)

1992 4th Place Class A York H.S. (7th Place Over-All)
1991 3rd Place Class A York H.S. (4th Place Over-All)

1990 3rd Place Class A York H.S. (5th Place Over-All)

*1989 2nd Place Class A York H.S. (4th Place Over-All)

*1988 1st Place Class A York H.S. (3rd Place Over-All)

*1987 2nd Place Class B St. Paul H.S. (4th Place Over-All)

1986 No Place Class B St. Paul H.S.   (No records Over-All records available)

• Denotes placement that qualified for a Trophy
• 3 -Over- All Trophies
• 6- 1st Place Trophies



Brief historical background:

Goodrich Junior High opened in 1969.  Goodrich was named after Thomas V. Goodrich, a teacher and administrator in the Lincoln Public Schools from 1903 until 1947.  The school mascot was originally the Olympians.  The student body selected the name “Olympians” during the first year Goodrich was open.  The name was selected to represent the variety of activities offered at Goodrich School.  The student body also compared Belmont, a high place overlooking the city of Lincoln, to Mount Olympus.

Grades attended were 6-9th grades.  Goodrich Middle School has just completed a 2 year expansion and renovation.  Grades attending 6-8th grades.

Succession of Directors:
1969 – 1991- Robert (Bob) Olmsted  1991 – present – Teresa (Shelly) Lenz

Highlights of Band Program:

Students have performed over the years at the State Capitol, the Governor’s Mansion, nursing homes and feeder schools.


Brief historical background:

The Gretna High School Band has been in existence since 1965.

Succession of Directors:
1965-1968 - Walt Hutchinson 1980-1981 - Don Krysl
1968-1972 - Larry Voorhees 1982-1987 - Becky Rider
1972-1976 - Larry Everson   1987-1994 - Chris Tucker
1976-1979 - Clay Collier 1994-1999 - Chris Tucker/John Balcer
1979-1980 - Jim DeFrain 1999-2001 - Rob Lubbers 
2001-2007 - Mark Irvin 2007-2012 – Alex Wimmer/Chris Tucker
2012-present – Andrew Norris  

Highlights of Band Program:

1st place in Class B at Harvest of Harmony Parade Competition in 1995


Brief historical background:

The Hastings High School Band was established in 1917 by C.E. Sharpe. Matthew H. Shoemaker became director of bands in 1928. Uniforms were purchased in 1935-1936.  Band membership reached 101 students in 1948-1949.  In 1957-1958 the “Little Concert Band” was established for a small group of select players.  In 1962-1963 a Jazz ensemble was added to the program.  In 1976-1977 the two bands were combined as one.  In 1978-1979 the band is again divided into two ensembles.  In 1981-1982 the “Varsity Band” was renamed “Concert Band”.  In 1986-1987 the band established a “Concert-a-Month series.  In 1992-1993 John Roebke joins Dale Duensing in a 7-12 team teaching format.

Succession of Directors:  
1917-1928 - C. E. Sharpe 1976-1977 - Don Johnson
1928-1949 - Matt Shoemaker 1977-1978 - Doug Johnson
1949-1952 - David Missal 1978-2003 - Dale Duensing
1952-1953 - George Vivian 1992- Dale Duensing and John Roebke
1954-1958 - Steve Comi Dale Duensing and Chris Shade
1958-1976 - Edgar Tegtmeier

2004- present -Erin Beave

Highlights of Band Program:

In 1926 the HHS Band performed for Queen Marie of Rumania.  Band performed live on KMMJ from the Rivoli Theatre in 1937-1938.  In 1948-1949 the band had a membership of 101 students.  The band participated in the first Hastings/Grand Island Clinic in 1956-1957.   The band under the direction of Don Johnson, traveled to the Kansas City Worlds of fun in 1976-1977.  In 1978-1979 the band, under the
direction of Dale Duensing received its first “Superior” rating in Marching Band.  The band traveled to St. Louis in 1979-1980 and to Dallas in 1981-1982.  In 1983-1984 the Drumline performed for NSBA followed by the Symphonic Band in 1984-1985. Beginning in 1985-1986 the band alternated trips between Chicago
and St. Louis every two years.  During this time the band established itself as one of the finest marching bands in Nebraska with consistent Division One ratings at Norfolk, Harvest of Harmony, the NSBA State Marching Contest and other competitions entered periodically.



Brief historical background:
An organized band was part of the Homer community for over 100 years.  The Homer School has always had some type of music that was a part of its curriculum.  As the country schools consolidated and became part of the Homer School system in the early 1960's, there were often enough members to organize a Junior
Band and/or Beginning Band as well as the High School Band, which was done by the band teacher who was also the high school vocal teacher.  Eventually, Homer hired a separate band and vocal instructor.  Included in the program was a Concert Band, Marching Band, Pep Band, Dance Band, Orchestra and Junior Band In 1971-1972 a Jazz Band was added to the instrumental curriculum. 
Succession of Directors;  
1953-1954 - Kenneth VanDerSloot 1967-1969 - Barbara Jones
1954-1955 - Gerald Huldeen 1969-1970 - Dennis Downs
1955-1958 - Zean Zurcher 1970-1972 - Gene Iler
1958-1960 - Blaine Sprout 1972-1973 - Lloyd Hanna
1960-1961 - Mr. Bircher 1973-1978 - Larry Nelson
1961-1962 - Gene Bata     1978-1979 - Karen VanDenTop
1962-1964 - Nathan Wilson 1979-1998 - Lois (Mendlik) Harris
1964-1966 - Gerald Walker 1998-1999 - Joe Hardin
1966-1967 - No Teacher 1999-2008 -  Dave Moore
2012-present Noelle Petersen 2008-2012 - Taurice Alexander

Highlights of Band Program:

Throughout the history of the band program, the band has participated in every type of instrumental activity: The band has participated in conference clinics, traveled to Orange City, IA for the Tulip Festival parade in 1969;   in 1968-1969 they participated in the Wayne State Band Day and Morningside Band Day.   With Lois Harris’ arrival in 1979, the Jazz Band was revived, receiving superior ratings at Wayne, LeMars, IA, and an excellent rating at Norfolk.  The Homer Marching Band participated in Harvest of Harmony in 1996; participated in the annual Blue Water Music Festival in Spirit Lake, IA. receiving a second place in their class.  The band has participated in the Dakota County Fair, Homecoming Parades, various Jazz Festivals and the State Basketball Tournament in 1988 and 1997.




Brief historical background

The Howells High School band was started about 1925.  The first directors were area musicians. Howells had a community band in the thirties, forties and fifties.  They would play on evenings the stores were open.  On March 16, 1944, Dr. Frank Simon, a cornet soloist with the Sousa Band directed a clinic in Howells for area High Schools and community bands.  The community has had a number of dance bands and polka bands over the years and the Howells Ballroom was host to many of the big bands.

Succession of Directors  
1936-1941 - Ed Hodapp   1979-1983 - Deb Faltys
1941-1954 - John Simonek   1983-1985 - Soni Vollmar
1954-1955 - Eugene Kresl  1985-1987 - Randy Shackleton
1955-1958 - Marvin Weidner  1987-1993 - Ken Gansebom
1958-1971 - Joe Van Auken  1993-1997 - Kelli Divine
1971-1973 - Don Hubbs    1997-1998 - Mindy Phillips
1973-1974 - Gerald Kubik  1998-1999 - David Bartsch
1974-1978 - Carol Schultz 1999-2007 - Bob Johnson
1978-1979 - Ed Collins 2007-2009 - Rex Laughlin
2012 - present - Tanya Oligmueller 2009-2012 - Deb Faltys


Brief historical background:

The band was formed in 2007 following a merger of the Nemaha Valley and Tecumseh Public School Districts.  The school song “Thunderbirds Fly” was written by two Tecumseh alumni, Daniel Kettlehake and Nate Morrisey.

The band program consists of 5th through 12th grades with concert bands for 5th, 6th, 7/8 and High School.  Additionally, the High School functions as the Marching Band, holds auditions for the Jazz Band and makes up a volunteer Pep-Band.  The High School routinely performs at 3-5 home football games, 4-5 marching contests, 3-4 concerts, 3 music contests and all home volleyball and basketball games.  Middle School ensembles perform at 4 concerts as well as performing annually at music contest. Students are given the opportunity to audition for various honor bands including the Class–C Allstate. As of the end of the 2010-12 school year students have been accepted to participate.

Succession of directors;
2007-2008 –Andrew Johnson – Director of Instrumental Music
                 Gina Goodrich – Assistant Director
2008 – Present Andrew Johnson – Director of Instrumental Music

Highlights of Band Program:

MUDECAS Conference Division 1 ratings (* = 1, 1, 1)
            Concert Band – 2008*, 2010, 2011*
            Jazz Band – 2008, 2009, 2011
District Music Contest
            Concert Band – 2008, 2009*, 2010, 2011*
            Jazz Band – 2008*, 2009*, 2010*, 2011
March 2009 – Jazz Band performed at the Nebraska Rural Community School Association Conference
March 2009 – Jazz Band, best in Class C at Peru State Jazz Festival
May 2009 – Concert Band trip to Chicago, IL
October 2010 – Marching Band 2nd in Class C at NSBA; Best Colorguard, Percussion, Visual and Music


Brief historical background:

Kimball High School was established in 1907.  It was a number of years before an instrumental program became part of the school program because of a lack of available instrumental teachers.  The real history of the program lies with Harry McNees Band Director from 1953 until he retired in 1987 due to poor health.  The band was “an unknown” when Mr. McNees took the job and has been “an unknown” since he retired.  Harry has been awarded the “Don Lentz Outstanding Band Director” award and is a member of the Nebraska Music Educators “Hall of Fame.”

Succession of Directors:  
Art Frischel John Roebke
Alvie Duis Lance Nielsen
Elmer Panheau  Sharon Klein
Harry McNees Gary DeBoldt
Cynthe Staehr Steve Shell
Kristi Hiles-Smith  

Highlights of Band Program:

The band began its travels with Harry McNees.  Their first trip was to Ak-SAR-BEN in Omaha in 1959.  This began a succession of trips including the Orange Bowl in 1960; the Indianapolis 500 in 1962; the Portland Rose Festival in 1969, the Calgary Stampede and Exhibition in 1974; a return to Calgary in 1980 and a final trip to Worlds of Fun.  The band always received top honors at these events.

Many music students have gone on to careers in music.  David Hickman is one of many outstanding students who has won acclaim as one of the outstanding trumpet players in the world–presently professor of trumpet at Arizona State University.


Brief historical background:

The Laurel-Concord High School consists of Laurel, Concord and Dixon, NE.

Succession of Directors:  
1971-1979 - Dave McElroy   1988-1992 - Marty Fry
1979-1981 - Dale Irvin   1992-1993 - Daniel Wiese
1981-1985 - Craig Rostad  1993-1997 - Dwight Rose
1985-1986 - Kathy Homan      1997-2002 - Mary Haseman
Galen Arbogast and Jeff Klintberg?  2002-2004 - Jenny Danner   
1986-1988 - Indra Lesalnieks  2004-present - Patty Beyeler

Highlights of Band Program:

Hosted District Music Contest in 1996 for the first time.  Took first trip since 1970 in 1996.


Brief historical background:

Lewis and Clark Middle School opened in August of 2007.  The school became the 3rd middle school in the Bellevue system.  The band program started with 3-7th grade bands with 112 students and 2-8 grade bands with 62 students for a total instrumental enrollment of 174 students.

Succession of Directors:
Byron Braasch and Brandi Greenfelder have team taught the Lewis and Clark Middle School Bands since the school opened in August of 2007.

Highlights of the Band Program:

In only their second year of existence the Lewis & Clark 8th grade band was selected to perform for the 2009
NSBA Convention.


Brief historical background:

The Dalton and Gurley School Districts were consolidated beginning in the 1978-79 school year forming the Leyton Public Schools.  The first band director was Dan Douglas.  The program has always had a strong concert band for a small school and also participates in parade marching and basketball pep band.

Succession of Directors:
1978-81 – Dan Douglas 2003-07 – Jared Eastvold
1981-82 – Neal Middlemiss 2007-08 – Shannon Yetter
1982-03 – Steve Cole  2008 – present Shawn Oakes

Highlights of Band Program:

Leyton has been recognized as the outstanding concert band at the Minuteman Activities Conference Contest a total of 12 times since 1990, and as the outstanding jazz band during that same period. 




Brief historical background:

Lincoln East opened in 1967 with 1300 High School and 600 Junior High Students and some adult classes.  Dick Kucera was the High School Band/Orchestra director, Duane W. Johnson, Junior High Band/Orchestra director. 

The school included students from what had been University High School, and Junior High Students from Lefler, Culler, and the East area placed into the East attendance area.  The school was to be a DEMONSTRATION school with student teachers, and observers from the University of Nebraska and all over the world.  The High School Instrumental program included 2 bands, orchestra, jazz ensemble; Junior High included 2 bands, and orchestra.

Succession of Directors:
1967-1972 - Richard Kucera, H.S.: Duane W Johnson, Jr. H.S.
1972-1974 - Bob Colwell, H.S.; Duane W. Johnson Jr. H.S.
1973-1974 - Duane W. Johnson, H.S. & Jr. H.S. Band
     Robert Colwell, H.S. & Jr. High Orchestras and Jazz Bands
1974-1986 - Duane W. Johnson, H. S.; John Rogers, Jr. H.S.
1986-1993 - Del Whitman, H.S. Band and Orchestra; John Rogers, Jr. H.S.
1993-2001 - Jeff Lean, H.S. Bands; Ky Hascall, Assistant Director
2001-2002 - Lance Nielsen, Director; Ky Hascall, assistant
2002-2008 - Lance Nielsen, Director; Nolan Schmit, assistant
2008-2009: Lance Nielsen and Tom Thorpe, Directors
2009-2010: Tom Thorpe, Director; Jeremy Palensky, assistant (Nielsen was on sabbatical working on his PhD)
2010-2012: Tom Thorpe, Director; Lance Nielsen, assistant
2012- present: Tom Thorpe, Director; Paul Kenney, assistant

Highlights of Band Program:

In 1975, under the direction of Duane W. Johnson and John R. Rogers, the H.S. and Jr. H.S. Symphonic Bands performed for NSBA.   East H.S. has been a leader in encouraging students to audition for All-State and the various honor ensembles around the state.  In 1976 East H.S. entered the Pershing Marching Band Competition.   From 1975 to 1979 East High Symphonic Band won 5 consecutive trophies as best concert band in the Lincoln Public Schools Contest.   Symphonic Band performed at NSBA in 1982.   In 29 years, Duane worked with approximately 75 student teachers.

The Marching Band grew to over 200 members during the late 1990's and the same numbers continue today. Since 1998 the marching band has received consistent Superior ratings. In 2002, the East Marching Band performed in the Celebration Parade for the Baseball World Series Champions–then the Anaheim Angels but now the Los Angeles Angels and in 2009, the Lincoln East Marching Band was invited to march in the London New Years Day Parade in London England.

The Wind Ensemble was created under the direction of Jeff Lean and was continued by Lance Nielsen.  This premier auditioned ensemble, under the direction of Lance Nielsen, was the Grand Champion of the Worlds of Fun Kansas City Music Festival in2003.  The East bands have traveled to music events in Kansas, Missouri, California, Florida and Chicago, Illinois.

In 1988 the East High School Concert Band, under the direction of Del Whitman, played for the NSBA Convention. Claude T. Smith, composer, spent the day doing clinics with all four of the Lincoln High School bands in 1989. The East Wind Ensemble under the direction of Tom Thorpe once again performed for the NSBA Convention in 2012.


Brief historical background:

Lincoln High School was one of the first, and probably the first, to establish a High School band in Nebraska.  (Omaha and Lincoln both established programs about the same time) Lincoln High School has always performed a leading role in instrumental music education in Nebraska.  They were hosts to the early State Music Contest held in Nebraska which were discontinued with the advent of the District Music Contests–Lincoln High School serving as a host to the early contest in their district.  Historically nearly anything that happened instrumentally could be traced back to their leadership.

Succession of Directors:
(Information not available)
Until 2009 - Terry Rush
2009-2010 - Dan Ehly
2010- present - Chris Watson

Highlights of Band Program:

In May of 2002 the Symphonic Band participated in the Branson Classic Invitational Band Contest.  They
received a Superior Rating and in the second day of finals finished Runner Up to bands from 13 states.

The Lincoln High School band program has long been known as one of the premier high school band programs in the state of Nebraska.  The Lincoln High School Symphonic Band receives consistent Superior ratings at the Lincoln Public Schools Contest.  In December of 2003 the Symphonic Band performed a concert in the Great Methodist Hall in London, England during the Lincoln High School Marching Band’s trip to London to participate in the New Years Day Parade and Festival through Youth Music of the World.  The Lincoln High School Marching Band was the first band to have been invited to and participate in this event.

In May of 2004 the Symphonic Band received a Superior Rating, was awarded the Class AAAAA Grand Champion Sweepstakes Winner of the Worlds of Fun Festival of Bands in Kansas City, Missouri.  The Symphonic Band has won the Grand Champion Sweepstakes Award the last eleven out of twelve years.

The Marching Band has also been a consistent Division I rating at contests in Columbus, the Lincoln Public
Schools Marching Contest and the NSBA State Marching Contest.  The Jazz Ensemble has also been a consistent Division I rating at various contests.


Brief historical background:

In 2003 Tobin Stewart opened the doors of North Star High School to 70 excited, nervous, and very young band students. The majority of the program was freshman and sophomores and he knew he was building from the ground up. The first rehearsal will forever go down in infamy when Mr. Stewart called up the “Stars Spangled Banner”. The downbeat was signaled and a cacophony of chaos emerged throughout the band room. It was then that Mr. Stewart realized he would have a very interesting year.

The first two years were a comedy of errors coupled with moments of success. Establishing routine and protocol were the immediate goals of the program, followed closely by finding student leaders. By 2005, the program had grown to 120 students and Rob Salistean joined the staff as assistant band director.

In 2008, Mr. Stewart handed the reins over to Mr. Salistean as he left to earn his Doctorate of Musical Arts from UNL.

The school has seen significant growth in recent years, reaching enrollment over 2,200 students, becoming Lincoln’s largest high school in 2015. The band program has seen growth as well with more students seeking to join in the future. The band performs and represents itself well at contests and concerts and is an integral part to the school.

Succession of Directors:
2003-2008       Tobin Stewart   Director of Instrumental Music
2005-2008       Rob Salistean    Assistant Director of Bands
2008-present    Rob Salistean   Director of Instrumental Music
2008-2009       Pat Nebesniak   Assistant Director of Bands
2009-present    Dave Sanderson  Assistant Director of Bands
2014-present Kirk Brown  Assistant Director of Bands

Highlights of Band Program:

April 2007:  First trip to Chicago, IL.  The entire band program went and combined on stage for a performance in a local elementary school that didn’t have a band. The band also played a joint concert with the West Des Plaines High School Band.  The band was also critiqued by a professor at Wheaton College.

March 2011:  Trip to Orlando, FL.  The band marched on Main Street in Walt Disney World.


Brief historical background:

Lincoln Southeast High School celebrated its 50th year in the 2004-2005 school year. 

Succession of Directors:
1954-1984 - Paul Austin
1984-1995 - Bob Krueger
1995-present - R.J. Metteer

Highlights of Band Program:

The Instrumental Program offerings include: Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble, Orchestra, Marching Band, and two Jazz Ensembles meeting during the school day.  Pep Band meets outside the school day.

The program has received numerous awards including four performances at the Nebraska Bandmasters Convention by the Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble, a performance by Jazz Ensemble I at the NSBA convention, and a performance at the Nebraska Music Educators Association Convention by the Orchestra.  The Symphonic Band was selected sweepstakes winner six years running at the LPS All-City Band competition. (1987-1992), was selected Sweepstakes winner three times at the Worlds of Fun Band Contes, and once as winner of the Six Flags contest in Chicago.  The Orchestra was also selected as best orchestra at Six Flags.  The Marching Band was named Sweepstakes winner at the Harvest of Harmony band contest and at the Southwest Iowa Marching Band Jamboree.  The 1999 LSE Jazz Ensemble I was selected, through audition, as one of 20 finalist bands nationally to perform at the Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Essentially Ellington competition in New York.  All of the ensembles at LSE consistently receive superior ratings at music competitions.  Students from LSE’s music program have accepted scholarships to many of the most prestigious Music Schools in the country.


Brief historical background:

The Logan View High School Band came into existence in the spring of 1968 with the merger of Hooper and Uehling High Schools. The band regularly enrolls 25-35 percent of the student body at Logan View School.

Succession of Directors:
John Parde and Lee Nelson at Hooper, Donna Fleer at Uehling,
Laurie Barry Bartels and Brenda Thompson at the junior high band level
1969 - 2003 - Bruce Bartels 2003 -2008 -Myron Poessnecker
2008 – Present - Andrew Norris  

Highlights of Band Program:

Bruce Bartels - School Concerts, parades, music for community functions such as Memorial Day, outdoor concerts, ground breaking activities, and other community activities.  They participated in the first Worlds of Fun Festival in 1974 and in 1980 won the Sweepstakes Trophy at Worlds of Fun. They have traveled to St. Louis for festivals.  Their summer schedule includes county parades in Scribner, Arlington and Oakland.  The marching band has won top prizes at the Wayne State Band Day Parade, the Star City Parade and the 4-H parade in Fremont.  The concert band performed for the NMEA convention in 1978 and served as a lab band for a NMEA session in 1990.

Under Band Director Andrew Norris, the band has received Division 1 ratings in field marching as well.  The band has made regional trips to festivals on a regular basis, and has always enjoyed strong support from the Hooper and Uehling Communities.


Brief historical background:

Began as a K-12 institution in 1928.  The Loomis School District serves 170 students.

Succession of Directors:
2003-2004 – Michelle Melroy 2006-2008 – Janet Palmer
2004 – 2006 – Andrea Moody 2008-present – Sara Smith

Highlights of Band Program:

The band has taken educational trips, including performances at “Worlds of Fun” in Kansas City, and Dallas, Texas.  The Loomis band has won numerous awards in marching contests and District Music Contest.  Loomis students regularly audition for All-State, with many students being accepted.  The band participates in conference music activities.  Small ensembles and soloists participate in District Music Contest.


Brief historical background:

An instrumental music program started in Loup County in the 1930's.  In the 1940's, a local person, Mr. Guy Fletcher came in and led the Instrumental Music program at the Loup County Public School for several years.  Band continued for several years with different directors coming and going.  Yearly changes continued in the 1960's and in 1971 it was decided the position should be part-time.  Dr. Glenn Auble was hired and led the program until 1975.  The band program grew quickly with the band reaching a membership of 52.  Because of boy’s athletics, the membership of the band was entirely high school girls.  The All Girl Loup County School Band became famous around the area.  They marched parades and even rode a Ferris wheel while playing their instruments.  Dr. Auble continued to teach band until retiring at the age of 82.

Succession of Directors:  
1940- Guy Fletcher  1984-1987 - Ed Thamer
1960-1962 - Mrs. Conn    1987-1990 - David Gallio
1963-1964 - Charlotte Crocker  1990 1st sem - Mrs. Putman
1964-1966 - Diane Trullinger  1990 -2nd sem - Lori Simpson
1966-1967 - Leonard Arends  1991-1993 - Lori Simpson
1967-1969 - Mr. Reinertson/Jewell Buoy 1993-1996 - Dave Gallion
1969-1971 - Mary Jarvis 1996-1997 - Vickie Johnson
1971-1975 - Dr. Glen Auble    1997-1998 - Dinklage, Coop,& Gary
1978-1981 - Robert Runyan 1998-2010 - Kayla White
1981-1982 - Harold Sloan 2010-2012 – Kyle Knaub
1982-1983 - Denise Rosno  2012-present - Kayla White
1983-2984- Vickie Bullis/Johnson  

Highlights of Band Program:

The famous All Girl Loup County Band.  In spite of ups and downs, the band program has continued to exist and occupy a position of importance to Loup County.


Brief historical background:

The band has been in existence since before 1965.

Succession of Directors:  
1983-1984 - Gary Winter  1989-1992 - Valerie Brown/Pohlman
1984-1986 - Don Hardin   1993-1994 - Susan Cook
1986-1988 - Marilyn Lingbloom  1994-1999 - Jill Anderson
1988-1989 - Don Hardin  1999-2002 - Jean Worrell
2002-present - Jean Fidler  


Brief historical background:

The McCook band and orchestra were started in 1921 by Leo Kelly.  His bands were among the first to
compete in the State Contests held from 1924-1936, in which, as a class B school competing in class A, they were often rated as #1 or #2 band.  After Leo’s son Bill Kelly took over the band program in 1948, the bands continued their outstanding record after the creation of District Music Contests, receiving 1+ ratings on several occasions.  All students, beginning in 6th grade, took private lessons for at least a year with either Bill or Leo, who continued as the Jr. High Director until 1956.

Succession of Directors:  
1921-1948 - Leo Kelly   1980-1981 - Kevin Hitchcock
1948-1957 - Bill Kelly 1981-1987 - Jim Schmucker
1957-1960 - Ward Rounds 1987-1989 - Paul Ramp
1960-1961 - Farrell Coy 1989-1991 - Randy Raines
1961-1964 - Owen Metcalf 1991-1993 - Rod Drews
1964-1966 - Kenneth Rumery  1993-1994 - Diane Hughes
1966-1970 - Allen Ziegelbein 1994-1996 - Terry Zuelow
1970-1976 - Stan Spomer 1996-1998 - Michelle Lamberty
1976-1979 - Bud Dahlstrom 1998-2000 - Erin Beave
1979-1980 - Ellis Vaughn 2000-2006 - Brian Regier
  2006-present – Donita Priebe

Highlights of Band Program:

During Leo Kelly’s tenure, the bands performed in many parades and concerts in communities around the state.  In 1939 the band was awarded first place in the National Music Contest held in Colorado Springs, CO.  Weekly summer concerts in the McCook City Park were a highlight of the community throughout the care of both Leo and Bill Kelly.  The high school marching band traveled to Omaha in 1951 for the Aksarben Rodeo competition, earning a superior rating.  In 1952 and again in 1953, the band traveled to Enid, OK to participate in the highly regarded Tri-State Music Concert Competitions, earning Superior ratings in both years, plus being selected the Outstanding Band in all classes in 1953.  In 1954 the band was one of a very few Nebraska bands ever selected to perform at the annual National Music Educators Conference, which was held in Cleveland, OH that year.  In 1986 the McCook band was recognized by the John Phillip Sousa Foundation as a member of The Historic Roll of High School Bands from 1920-1960, one of only 35 bands so honored, and the only one from NE, KS or MO.

In 1972 the band journeyed to Boulder, CO for the Music In The Rockies Festival and also played for the visit of U.S. Senator Hubert Humphrey in McCook.  In 1973 the band performed for President Nixon’s Inaugural Parade in Washington, D.C., and in 1975 performed in the NE Shrine Bowl.  In 1983 they performed at the

World’s of Fun Park in Kansas City, MO.  In 1991 the band was privileged to perform for the inauguration of NE Governor Ben Nelson.  The band again ventured to the Music In the Rockies Festival in Boulder, CO in 1996, and again at the World’s Of Fun in Kansas City in 1999.  In both 2002 and 2004, the band was selected to perform at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.


Brief historical background:

Millard North opened its doors in 1978, then as a level one high school, with just ninth and tenth grade students.  It became a 9-12 high school in the 1981-82 school year.  Ron Austin, who had previously been
at Millard Middle School, was the first band director at Millard North.  More than 200 students participate in the instrumental program.

Succession of Directors:
1978 - 1986 - Ron Austin 2000 - 2004 - Matt Sheppard
1986 - 2000 - Jim Johnson 2004 - 2012 - Larry Rathbun - Cathy Keiser, Assistant Director
  2012- present - Ryan Placek

Highlights of Band Program:

Under the direction of Jim Johnson, the band earned 14 consecutive superior ratings at District Music Contest and was champion of their class 12 of 14 years at the Elkhorn Band Olympics. In addition,   countless superior ratings were earned at Jazz Festivals, solo competitions, and  marching band field and street competitions The band was winner of its class in concert band competition at the Red River Exhibition in Winnipeg, Canada in 1988 and was named Sweepstakes winner in AAA concert band competition, parade competition, and jazz competition at the All-American Band Festival in Florida.  (Two students were awarded new instruments for being the best soloist at the competition - Millard North students have always been active participants, and strong representatives, in the All-State and the various honor groups throughout the state.


Brief historical background

The school band program in the Millard Schools was started by Ray Cox in 1959.  Millard South is the oldest high school in the district.  The bands typically began with a 64 piece concert and marching band in the 1960's.  Ray Cox was the original band director and was composer for the school song.  Jerry Johnson became the band director in 1975.  The band grew to around 100 members in the 1980's and performed for local and area parades, contests and concerts.  Concert bands expanded to include a Concert and Symphonic band in 1980.  The Millard South band grew to 230 members in 1994, prior to the opening of Millard West H.S...

Succession of Directors:  
1959-1975 - Ray Cox 1991-present - Rex Barker
1975-1988 - Jerry Johnson 1995-2004 - Ed Kazmierski - Associate Band Director
1981-1984 - Bob Patterson - Assistant Band Director 2001-present - Darren Myers, Assistant Band Director
1988-1991 - Dave McElroy  

Highlights of Band Program

The band earned its first superior rating at District Music Contest in 1963.  The years that followed have produced consistent superior ratings.  Through the years the band has marched at the UNL Band Day, Columbus Days, Applejack Festival, Florence Days, Shrine Bowl, UNO Band Day, Harvest of Harmony, River City Roundup, and various Field Marching Contests including the NSBA State Marching Contest.
The band has traveled to the Red River Exhibition in Winnipeg, Canada; competed in the Music Fest Orlando, traveled to the Holiday Bowl in San Diego and the Ski/Music Fest in Winter Park CO.


Succession of Directors:
1995-2000 - Paul Gausman  
2000-2004 - Michelle Hall
2002-present - John Keith


Brief historical background:

On March 13 of 1888 the first High School Band was organized.  There is no record of the instrumentation of the first band but most of the bands of this early period were small and of varied instrumentation.  A student, Charles McClean was chosen as president of the band.  No director was hired. It is assumed that this group
met outside the school day.  A Minden Cornet Band performed at the 1895 commencement exercises but no instrumental groups were listed for the event during the years 1896-1898. Since there appeared to be no instrumental director in the early days and thus didn’t meet on a regular basis.  It appears that an orchestra was the ensemble of choice as no mention of a band is made in these early days.  The first band was pictured in the 1932 yearbook.  They were dressed in white trousers and shirts.  There were 44 students in the band–some of them very young.

1935 marked the first time that the band appeared in full uniforms.  In 1938 the band had grown to 54 members and a fairly balanced instrumentation.  The mid-thirties were the beginning of the long tradition that continues in Minden to this day.

Succession of Directors:
1919-1920 - Miss Clyde Templeton    1958 - 1967 - Bill Larson
1925-1926 - Miss Dorothy Cave 1967 - 1968 - Jerry Chrisp
1926-1932 - Miss Morine Nyquist 1968 - 1997 - Phil Fahrlander
1932-1935 - Raymond McCormick 1973 - 1978 - Phill Parker, Assistant Director
1935-1937 - Eugene Ellsworth  1978 - 1979 - Gary Peters, Assistant Director
1937-1941 - Russell Cummings  1979 - 1981 - Wayne Iams, Assistant Director
1941-Dec.1942 - Joseph McLees 1981 - 1982 - George Andrews, Assistant Director
1943 (Jan-May) C.E. Wanek  1997 - 1998 - Chris Shade
1943-1944 - Leslie Marks 1998 - 2008 - Mike Nickel
1944-1945 - Carlos Atkinson 2008- 2012 – Dara Jochum
1945 - 1965 - Don Helzer 2012 – present – Jacob Hoffman

Highlights of Band Program:

The Minden High School Band, under the direction of Phil Fahrlander, won its first ever trophy at Kearney Band Day in 1968 as the Class B Parade Champions and repeated again in 1969. In 1971 the band received its first Division I rating at the Pershing Marching Festival.  In 1972, the band was named the Outstanding Class B Band at Hastings Melody Round-up and first place winner of the Kearney County Centennial Parade. In 1973 Minden was named the Best Overall Band at the Century of Progress Parade in North Platte, Class B Parade Champion at Grand Island Harvest of Harmony, and Class A Parade Champion at the McCook College Band Day.  In 1975 the band attended the Portland Rose Festival Parade and named Best Out-Of-State Band.

The Minden Band received superior ratings at District Music Contest every year.  They continued to win most every parade competition they entered.  In 1991 Phil created and coordinated the Minden Bandfest Marching Contest.


Brief Historical background

The school was known as Hooker County High School until 1959 when it became Mullen High School.  In 1938 the music program included band, orchestra boy’s glee and girl’s glee. In 1954 the offerings changed to
band, no orchestra, cadet band (grade school band) and intermediate band.  In 1957 the programs consisted of Dance Band, Concert Band Marching band which also included Majorettes.  Norbert Schuerrman served as Director of Music and Principal. The size of the various programs fluctuated with enrollment.

Succession of Directors:  
1938-1947 – Harold Specht 1980-1982 – Warren Knowlton
1947-1952 – Chiyo Okano  1982-1985 – Susan Young
1952-1954 – Esther Schram  1985-1986 – Miss Albert
1956-1957 – Durrell Thompsen    1986-1988 – Ron Holscher
1958-1959 – Kenneth Howat 1988-1989 – Stanley Raetz
1959-1962 – Norbert Schuerman 1989-1990 – Deanna Robinson
1962-1963 – Leonard Blinde 1990-1993 – Corey Jen King
1963-1966 – Dennis Carroll 1993-1997 – Nancy Beyea
1966-1967 – Rita Harding  1997-1998 – Mike Douty
1967-1969 – Dennis Boyce 1999-2006 – Anne Renninger
1969-1971 – Lee Finecy   2006-2008 – Janice Garrard
1971-1974 – Mr. Dilling 2008-2010 – Christy Hageman
1974-1976 – Mr. Showalter  2010-present – Kathy Tvrdy
1976-1977 – Mary Howe  
1977-1980 – Ed Kohel  

Highlights of Band Program

Attended UNL Band Day in 1963, 1964, and 1965


Brief Historical background

The Neligh school district #9 was organized in January, 1872.  The first school building was completed in January, 1875, and was located on the southwest corner of the block on which the present high school building stands. In July, 1980, the School Board purchased one block of land in the western part of Neligh for a schoolhouse site.  The building was completed and students were transferred to it January 1, 1910.The cornerstone of the high school building was laid in 1913, and in 1931 an addition was built, housing the commercial and home economics classes and a larger gymnasium with a stage at the north end.  This was connected to the original building by an enclosed walkway. In 1940, the School Board approved construction of an athletic field adjacent ot the high school building to the north. In 1949, a new high school was built by Beckenhauer of Norfolk and was occupied in September 1950. In 1966, a new gymnasium building was added to the East Ward Campus, connected by an enclosed walkway.  This building is still our gymnasium today. 

In 1975, the Oakdale School district merged with the Neligh School district to form the Neligh-Oakdale School district. In 1977, the previously condemned West Ward Building was demolished to make way for a new, steel, single story school, and was added on to in 1995, the Preschool-2nd grade still use this building today (2016).A new track and football field was completed in 1980.During the summer of 2005, a major landscaping project was completed in front of the 1950’s building.  In 2006, another major landscaping project was completed on the south side of the football field.In 2012, several renovations were made to the buildings to meet code, and make our 1930’s building more efficient a new HVAC was installed in 2013.  

Succession of Directors:  
1937-1942 – Robert L. Knight 1942-1943 – Wilda King
1943-1947 – Earlyon Lamberty 1947-1952 – B. A. Johnson
1952-1954 – Rex D. Ilgenfritz 1954-1958 – Ray Sage
1958-1960 – Robert Nohavec  1960-1962 – Donald Schumacher

1962-1963 – James Kadlec – first semester
Merle Larson – last three month

1963-1966 – Merle Larson
1966-1970 – Stanley Spomer 1970-1972 – Clifford Manning
1975-1979 – David Brinkman 1979-1982 – Gayle Bergemann – started January 1980
1982-1983 – Randy Anderson 1983-1984 – Jeanette Duerksen
1984-1985 – Jeanette Anderson 1985-1988 – Teresa Krause
1988-1989 - Eric Brown 1989-1990 - Sam Zitek
1990-1993 - Jennifer Trenhaile 1993-1996 - Doug Hauserman
1996-2001 – James Ingram 2002-Present – Nate Metschke

Highlights of Band Program

The band fitted for new uniforms in 2000.  The band takes a trip to Worlds of Fun every 4 years.  Each fall the marching band marches at the State Fair, Norfolk Lyon’s Club Parade, and Harvest of Harmony.  The band has won class C in 2013-2015, and placed 4th in HOH in 2013, and 2nd in 2015.  The students really excel in band, and the program has grown from 28 members to 50 in Mr. Metschke’s tenure.  The school has also started a drumline, and all students, regardless of what instrument they play, can be a member of the drumline. 


Brief historical background:


Succession of Directors:  
1985-1987 - Frank Fyock 1987-1988  - Bob Johnson
1988- 1994 - Tom Bierer 1994-1996 -  Bill Maltas
1996-1999 - Christine Proskovec 1999-2001 - Sherie Small
2001-2005 -Karen Goetsch 2005-2006 - John Furrow
2006-2015 -  Jack Fischer 2015- present - Samantha Hahn

Highlights of Band Program:


Succession of Directors:
1964-1966 - Mary Kettlehut  1978-1985 - Dick Marolf
1966-1967 - Louis Thompson   1985-1988 - Kathy Dalby
1967-1968 - Philip Kite 1988-1991 - Jackie Rush
1968-1970 - John Schueth    1991-1993 - Mike Richardson
1970-1971 - Russell Workman    1993-1994 - Mike Bass
1971-1973 - Ralph Wienstein   1994-2000 - Lance Nielsen
1973-1974 - Carl Hanner  2003 –present - Evan Lee
1974-1978 - Jeff Klintberg  


Brief historical background:

            The band was formed in 1968 following a merger of the Cook and Talmage Public School Districts. The school song was Washington and Lee Swing.
            The band program consisted of 5th through 12th grades with concert bands for 5th, 6/7, and 8th-12th grades. Additionally the High School functioned as the Marching Band, held auditions for the Jazz Band and made up a volunteer Pep-Band. The High School routinely performed at three marching contests, 3-4 concerts, two music contests and all home football, volleyball and basketball games. Middle School ensembles performed at four concerts as well as a music contest annually. Students also were given the opportunity to audition for various honor bands including ten in the NMEA All-State Band and numerous students in Class-D and C All-States.
            The school closed after the 2006-07 school year as part of a merge with Tecumseh Public Schools forming Johnson County Central.

Succession of Directors:  
1968-72 Paul Ramp 1982-85 Carolyn Kelly (Mehling)
1972-75 Margit Morgan (Fisher) 1985-87 Dean Ray
1975-77 Barbara Booth 1987-90 Betty Colbert
1977-78 Lindia Kull 1990-01  Jim Kucera
1978-79 Carol Schultz 2001-04 Lindsey LeMunyan
1979-81 Robert Bebout 2004-07  Andrew Johnson
1981-82 Dawn Diffy  

Highlights of Band Program:
District Music Division 1 ratings (* = 1, 1, 1)
Concert Band –  1970, 1972, 1990, 1991, 1992*, 1993*, 1994*, 1995*, 1996*, 1997*, 1998*, 1999*, 2000*, 2001*, 2002, 2003*, 2004*, 2005*, 2006, 2007

Jazz Band – 1971, 1972, 1993*, 1995*, 1996*, 1997*, 1998*, 1999*, 2000*, 2001*, 2003*, 2004*, 2005, 2006*, 2007*

NSBA Spring Convention Performance - 1995
NSBA Concert Band Festival – 1997, 1998
Jazz Band Best in Class D at Peru State Jazz Festival – 2002, 2003, 2006, 2007

Parade Results:

AppleJack Festival Class C/D
1st place: 1973, 1974, 1975, 1980, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006;
2nd place: 1978, 1979, 1981, 2002;
3rd place: 1983, 1984,1994, 1995

            Peru State Homecoming Parade Class Champion – 1979, 1980, 1986, 1987
            Harvest of Harmony Parade Class Champion – 1973

Marching Band Class Champion

            Malcolm Marching Contest – 1993, 1994, 1996
            Lincoln High Marching Contest – 1997, 1998, 1999, 2005
            Plattsmouth Marching Band Invitational -  1981

Marching Band Division 1 ratings

            Pershing Marching Contest  – 1970, 1972, 1974, 1976, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1992
            NSBA Marching Contest  – 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001
            Harvest of Harmony – 1973, 1975, 1976, 1978
            Malcolm Marching Contest - 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996
            Lincoln High Marching Contest - 1997, 1998, 1999
            Lincoln Public School Marching Band Contest - 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2004
            Syracuse Marching Contest - 1971
            Nebraska City Marching Competition - 1997
            Pawnee City Marching Competition - 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996
            Plattsmouth Marching Band Invitational  - 1970, 1971, 1972, 1974, 1981, 2000,2001          2002       

1987 – Kansas City     
1989 – Silver Dollar City
1992 – Minneapolis / St. Paul
1995 – Kansas City, Worlds of Fun Festival – Superior Rating
1998 – St. Louis, Six Flags Music Festival – Superior Rating
2001 – Minneapolis / St. Paul
2004 - Chicago
2007 - Dallas



Brief historical background

Oakland and Craig consolidated in 1969.  There is no record of any Instrumental program in Craig prior to 1956.  Only elementary music and some secondary vocal existed in the school.

Succession of Directors:  


1956-1959 - Ed Hanna 1961-1967 - Gaylen Montgomery
1959-1961 - Gwanethe Metz  1967-1969 - Ed Kohel
1932-1936 - Aubrey J. Bouck 1965-1966 - Richard Oehring
1936-1938 – unknown 1966-1968 - Irv Pearson
1938-1942 - Sylvesta Wassum  1968-1969 - Francis Osentowski
1941-1942 - Betty Jo Byllesby 1969-1970 - Eric Johnson
1942-1943 - Stuart D. Loomis/Buel Ford 1970-1971 - Dennis Downs
1943-1944 - Julia Schick  1971-1974 - Eric Johnson
1944-1947 - Edith Burkett   1974-1975 - Paul Cooper
1947-1948 - Martin Fellner    1975-1976 - Paul Cooper/Herb Klemme
1948-1949 - Mary Jean Johnson  1976-1977 - Charlotte Bumgarner
1949-1950 - Phyllis V. Anderson   1977-2008 – Bryan Johnson
1950-1955 - Robert Lutt   2008-2010 - Brenner Beavers
1955-1956 - Paul Jorgenseon  2010-2012 – Kyle Dreesen
1965 -1966  Donovan Schuler   2012 – present – Bryan Bohn

Highlights of band program:

By the 2003-2004 school year, the Oakland-Craig High School Band had an enrollment of 104, with a long history of superiors at District Music Contest.  The band began a travel program in the late 1970's, with their first trips being to events such as the Drake Relays and Nebraskaland Days. 

The band now travels regularly to perform at events in Colorado Springs, Washington D.C and Orlando, Florida.  The band has traveled to Canada three times in the last ten years, performing at contests and parades in Toronto and Niagara Falls.


Brief historical background:

Omaha Burke High School actually began with the opening of John H. Beveridge Junior High School in 1963. The school was known as Burke/Beveridge at that time. In 1967, Burke High School officially opened its doors at its present location at 120th and Burke Boulevard in West Omaha.  This opening also marked the beginning of the Burke High School Band.

From 1967 through 1984 the Burke High Band performed at numerous school & community functions.  Omaha Public School (OPS) policies at the time prohibited the band from competitions and travel  In 1984, OPS changed the competition and travel policies which opened new opportunities for the band.


Succession of Directors:
1967-1972 – Thomas Harvey
1972-1982 – Dr. Stephen Lawrence
1982-1984 – Dave Bacon
1984-present – Murl Mickey – Mr. Mickey was assisted by Merlin Lempke (1991-present) and Norm Edwards (2000-2007)
2008-present – Norm Edwards – Mr. Edwards has been assisted by Nick Spath (2008-present)

Highlights of band program:

Under the direction of Murl Mickey (assisted by Merlin Lempke and Norm Edwards), the Burke band has participated in marching band competitions in Columbus, Plattsmouth, Lincoln and Omaha. Burke High
School annually hosts the Omaha Marching competition.  The band program predominately received “Superior” marks in marching, concert and jazz band contests.  Burke was the first OPS band to receive a “Superior” rating in the State Marching competition.  In 1993 the band traveled to St. Louis, MO to compete in a band festival.  In the spring of 2001, the band received an invitation to perform at EPCOT in Walt Disney World Florida. The w004 Nebraska State Marching completion marked the Burke High band’s 20th anniversary in that event.

Under the direction of Norm Edwards (assisted by Nick Spath), the Burke band has participated in marching band competitions in Columbus, Papillion, Lincoln, Orange City, IA, and Omaha.  Our Percussion Instructor is Dana Murray, assisted by Mike Howard. Our Color Guard Instructor is Julie Hadley, assisted by Stephanie Mendenhall.  Both the percussion section and color guard have earned top honors at several marching band competitions and festivals. In 2010 the marching band also placed at several competitions.  Burke High School annually hosts the Omaha Marching Invitational and hosted the 2009 NSBA State Marching Band Festival. The band program continues to predominately receive “Superior” marks in marching, concert and jazz band contests.  The Burke High Jazz Band traveled to Chicago in 2008 to participate in a clinic with Bob Lark, DePaul University: and Minneapolis in 2009 to participate in a clinic with Larry Kisor, retired Sioux City North Band Director, and attended a concert by Wynton Marcellus and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. In 2011 the jazz bands participated in a workshop with the Thelonius Monk Institute. The band program again went on a trip to Orlando in 2011 which included a performance at EPCOT in Walt Disney World. 


Succession of Directors:
1959-1966 - Earl Green Michelle Bluford
1966-1970 - Robert Edson Ryan Crick, Nicholas Spath
2007-2012 – Marty Anholtz 2012 – present – Sean Lockard

Highlights of Band Program:

Earl Green and Robert Edson were inducted into the Benson High School Hall of FameIn 1965, the Benson Band was chosen to represent Nebraska in the Presidential Inaugural Parade in Washington, D. C.  The following year they were selected to present a concert for the Nebraska State Education Association’s annual convention.


Brief historical background:

The first band in Ord was the Bond’s Concert Band which was organized in 1894, consisting entirely of amateurs.  It was established as a town band and performed regular concerts throughout the year. In 1904 George Ehret, who had been a member of the Bond’s band, decided to organize a city band after Bond moved away.   In 1910, ten high school boys who played in the city band decided they should have a pep band at local football games.  In 1912, eighteen boys who were members of the city band became the first Ord High School Band, under the direction of Glen Auble.  In 1923, a man by the name of Professor Geeks was hired through a collective effort of the school, the city, the Chamber of Commerce and the parents. Geeks stayed about two years and was followed by Mr. Tonnegis and he was followed by Hemming Hautala in 1926.  By 1928 the band, was known as the high school band and received a superior at the state music

Succession of Directors:      
1894-Rollin W. Bond  1967-1969 - Eric Johnson
1904-George Eret 1969-1972 - James Ochsner
1910-Glen Auble 1972-1973 - Alvin Foote
1923-1925 - Professor Gecks 1973-1975 - Jerry Johnson
1925-1926 - Mr. Tonniges 1975-1978 - Gregg Dress
1926-1933 - Hemming Hautala 1978-1980 - James Oschner
1933-1938 - Dean Duncan 1980-1983 - Dick Rischling
1938-1940 - Henry Deines 1983-1987 - Steve Niles
War Years - Glen Auble 1987-2008  Jerry Neeman
1946- Bill Nelson 2008-2012 – Bob Lienemann
1966-1967 - Clark Yanda 2012 – present – Mindy Smith


Brief historical background:

The Palmyra school district serves Bennet, Palmyra, Unadilla, and Douglas The first performance of a Palmyra band was with the Spring Concert in April of 1959.

Succession of Directors:  
1958-1960 - Ed Martin 1975-1978, 1980-1981- Marit Morgan
1961-1963 - Heather Wilhelm   1978-1980 - Linda Volland
1966-1967 - Burt Schernikau  1982-1984 – Chris Butler
1967-1968 - Janice Williams    1984 1998 - Steve Burbach
1968-1970 - Donald Ghehardt     1999-2001 - Lori Falcone
1970-1975 - Margaret Klump   2001-2002 - Jim Novak     
  2002-present - Sandy Murphy

Highlights of Band Program:

Nebraskaland Days, in  North Platte in 1987, Cavalcade of Music in Colorado Springs in 1991 and the American Classics Music Festival in Dallas in 1995


Brief historical background:

Art Schrepel will always be remembered as the author of a legendary Band Tradition in Pawnee City.  His thirty five years will always epitomize excellence.  His focus was the Concert Band and every student was expected to give his/her best.  He gave private lessons during the school day to elementary, junior high and High School students.  He was a perfectionist who expected no less from his students.

Succession of Directors:     
1923-1925 - Mr. Fiala      1973-1977 - Bob Patterson
1926-1928 - Miss Wilson 1978-1982 - Mike Rinehart
1928-1930 - Mr. Hagenow 1983-1988 - Jamie Switzer
1932-1967 - Arthur Schrepe 1990-1997 - Doug Phillips
1968-1969 - Lloyd Fisher 1998-1999 - Cody Collins
1969-1970 - Mr.  Heimsoth 1999-2000- Brandi (Palates) Hirschbrunner
1970-1971 - Frank Alexander 2001-present - Andrea (Krous) Veleba
1971-1972 - Ray Gilstrap  

Highlights of Band Program:

Always a superior at District Music Contest under Art Schrepel and many superiors under the direction of those who followed him.  His band participated in local and county activities.  In 1966-1967 the band was invited to the New York Worlds Fair.


Brief historical background

In the summer of 1965 Glenn J. Koca was hired as band director of grades 5-12.  He started with 17 musicians in high school and built it to 48 during the year in grades 8-12.  There were 400 in 9-12 at the time.  With four elementary schools and a 7-12 building the program grew to expand the staff with an addition of a junior high band director helping with the elementary and high school.  William Sprague was hired in 1967 and taught two years in the system.  In 1969 Ken Molzer was hired and taught at Papillion Junior High for 30 years until his retirement.

In 1971 Papillion/LaVista High School was opened with grades 9-12 and a 90 piece band.  In 1976, with the addition of LaVista Junior High School, the 9th grade was included in both 7-9 high schools.  Even with a three year high school, the band grew with the growth of the community to over 120 members in 1980 and over 140 members in 1987 with a 10-12 enrollment of over 1100 students.

The fall of 2003 witnessed the most drastic changes in the band program. The 9th graders were moved to 2 high schools with the opening of Papillion/LaVista South High School.  Bill Kellett became the director of the new high school and Andy Walters became director of Papillion/LaVista High School.  Both schools started with nearly 150 students in each band program–grades 9-12.

Succession of Directors:
1937-1941 - Lois Conner/Ault 1942 - Jeane Spier/Janousky
1943 - Virginia McNeel 1944-1945 - Bob Ashton
early 50's   - Rudolph Berryman 1956-1957 - Rudy Srb
1958-1961 - J.P. Hinds 1962-1965 - George Meredith
1966-1988 - Glenn J. Koca H.S./La Vista Jr. High & Elementary 1989-1994
1967-1968 - William Sprague - Papillion Jr. High
1969-1999 - Ken Molzer - Papillion Jr. High
1974-1987 - Dick Keiser - 6th Grade Middle School & La Vista Jr. High
1977 - John Svagera - Assistant at La Vista & Papillion Jr. High/La Vista Jr. High 1992-present
1972 -Linda Boatright -Assistant Papillion Jr. High & Sixth Grade Instrumental Music to present
1984 - Ken Janak - Assistant at LaVista & Papillion Jr. High/Papillion Jr. High Direct 1999 to present
1987-1988 - Bill Kellett - La Vista Jr. High/Papillion La Vista H.S. 1989-2002/South High 2003-present
1991-1996 - Marilyn Godby – Assistant Director of Bands – Papillion/LaVista High
1996-1999 - Marilyn Godby – Assistant Director of Bands – Papillion JHS & LaVista JHS
2003- 2007- Andy Walters - Papillion La Vista High School
2007-2012 - Mike Pollock 2012-present - Tim Geller
Other Elementary instrumental instructors after 1994: Sandy Kramer/Havens - 6th grade; Kristine Wolfe - La Vista Jr. High Assistant & 6th Grade; Bob Wills - La Vista Jr. High Assistant & 6th grade; Mark Witt - 6th grade; Kristen Keller - Papillion Jr. High & 6th grade.

Highlights of Band Program:

The Papillion/LaVista High School Band during the “Koca Years” traveled extensively including: 1968 San Antonio Hemisfair; 1969 Honor Band at the NMEA Convention; 1970 Portland Oregon Rose Festival; 1971 ASBDA National Convention in Omaha; 1972 Honor Band NSBA Convention; 1972 Virginia Beach Music Festival; 1973 “Prize of the City of Vienna” outstanding band in Vienna Austria; 1976 Disneyland, California;

1978 Honor Band NSBA Convention; 1979 Festival in Seefeld, Austria; 1979 ; Best Band in street marching and field competition in UNL Centennial Contest; 1979 chosen to perform at half-time of Nebraska-Colorado football game; 1982 King Kamehameha Parade in Hawaii; 1984 Sudler “Flag of Honor” award; 1984
outstanding marching band at Quad State Dakota Dome in Vermillion; 1985 Mexico City and Acapulco; 1988
Honor Band at NSBA Convention; 1988 performed concerts on cruise ship Costa Riveria and several Caribbean Islands.  The band was chosen the outstanding band in the Harvest of Harmony contest in 1969, 1974, 1978 and 1982.

Under the direction of Bill Kellett the Papillion/LaVista High School Band maintained a high caliber of performance.  The band was selected to play in two Presidential Inaugural Parades and trips to Florida and Mexico.  The band continued to keep up the tradition of “top awards” in both concert and marching band.

The Papillion Junior High School Band, under the direction of Ken Molzer, was chosen to perform at the ASBDA National Convention, The NSEA Convention, the MENC Divisional Convention, twice for the NMEA Convention and three times for the NSBA Convention.  Students under his instruction won honors in solo, ensemble, concert and marching band competition.  At the peak of enrollment, nearly 300 students were enrolled in the Papillion Junior High band program.

Ken Molzer also served as president of both the Nebraska Music Educators Association and the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association.  He also served as the NMEA Band Chairman and NSBA Treasurer.


Brief historical background

The Papillion witnessed a drastic change in the band program in 2003.  The 9th graders were moved to two high schools with the opening of Papillion/LaVista South High School.  Bill Kellett became the director of the new high school. 

Succession of Directors:
2003-present - Bill Kellett

Highlights of Band Program:

The band programs experienced immediate success in both marching and concert appearances under the direction of Mr. Kellett.


Brief historical background

The Pierce High School band had its start in the 1926-27 school year.  The earliest function of the band was to give summer concerts in the park, provide entertainment at the annual Pierce County Fair, providing music for the American Legion Memorial Day program and for the annual Veterans Day program.

Succession of Directors:  
1926-1927 - Boyd Crane 1945-1947 - Foy George
1927-1929 - Carl Skeen 1947-1949 - Emiel Wahling
1930-1931 - Paul Hummel 1949-1952 - John Freethy
1931-1932 - Alex Schneider 1952-1962 - Ben Haigh
1932-1933 - Herbert Spencer 1962-1964 - Jerry Johnson
1933-1937 - Austin Kramer 1964-1982 - Harold Willis
1937-1939 - Don Megahan 1982-1995 - Don Schmacher
1939-1941 - Frank Gamble 1995-1997 - Aaron Svoboda
1941-1942 - Margaret Stephens 1997-present Mike Sindt
1942-1945 - Rosemary Vondracek  

Highlights of Band Program:

The Pierce High School Band has been active in state activities.  The band attended the annual “Band Day” at UNL, took part in other band days.  In the 1960's the band started a tradition of an annual tour, giving concerts around Nebraska and in other states.


Brief historical background:

What started out as a Citizen Band of the Plattsmouth Community in the early 1900s rooting on the local sports teams eventually became the Plattsmouth High School Band in 1930. Although there were music supervisors and orchestra directors, the first mentioned band director was L.D. Hiatt in 1931. Since then, the bands have played a vital part in the history of Plattsmouth.

Succession of Directors:     
1931-1932 – L.D. Hiatt     1934-1936 – Hoyt Griffin
1946-1949 – David Fowler 1954-1957 – Melvin McKenney
1957-1962 – Richard Kucera 1962-1976 – Jack Herweg
1976-1977 – Ralph Weinstein 1978-1990 – Skip Kull
1990-2001 – Barb Mock 2001-2006 – Brandy Palatas
2006-2009 – Brian Alber 2009-Present – Zac Konrad

Highlights of Band Program:

The Plattsmouth High School Band has a long history of success. Many superior ratings have been awarded over the years to marching, jazz, and concert bands. Since its existence, the band has traveled from Chicago to the Rose Bowl to Walt Disney World to Washington D.C. as well as many other prestigious locations.



Brief historical background:

The band program started in the fall of 1953.  Ralston had a community band that was directed by Duane Baylor from 1977-1985.

Succession of Directors:  
1953-1955 - Jack Bourdess  1986-1989 - Jan Bogardus
1955-1977 - Gerald Chalupa 1989-2002 - Shane Macklin
1977-1981 - Larry Lutte 2002-2004 - Andy Walters
1981-1986 - Allan Amandus 2004- present - Martin Frye

Highlights of Band Program:

Band performed for NSBA in 1960's.  The band has been on many trips to California, Missouri, Florida, Texas, Indiana and many other places.


Brief historical background:

.St. Paul has been a NSAA Class C1-B Band over the years, located in Howard County, NE. The mascot of St. Paul Public Schools is the Wildcat, and the school is a member of the LouPlatte Athletic Conference. The band program was a grade 5-12 position.

Succession of Directors:  
Bob Owen Mike Rienhart
Jerry Nieman 1986-1988: James S. Kordik
Monica Peters Dan Sodomka
Kelley Jordan  

Highlights of Band Program:

ST. PAUL HIGH WILDCAT Band Performance Results (1986-1988)
1986 - 87
Loup-Platte Conference Parade - 10th Place
Loup-Platte Conference Field Show - Comments Only
Harvest of Harmony Parade - No Placement
Harvest of Harmony Field Show - Good Rating - Class B
Malcolm Clipper Marching Contest - Excellent Rating Trophy - Class A
District Music Contest - Concert Band Excellent Rating  (II + II + I  = II)

1987 - 88
Yorkfest Parade - 2nd Place Trophy - Class A/B
UNK Band Day Parade - 1st Place Trophy - Class B
Harvest of Harmony Parade - 2nd Place Runner up Trophy - Class B
Harvest of Harmony Field Show - Excellent Rating Trophy - Class B
Hastings Melody Round-up Parade - 2nd Place Trophy - Class B
Lincoln Public Schools Marching Invite - Excellent Rating Trophy - Class B
Malcolm Clipper Marching Contest - Superior Rating Trophy - Class B  (first field marching superior in school history!)

District Music Contest - Concert Band Superior Rating (I + I + II + = I)

Matt Stoltenberg – All-State Band/Tuba




Brief historical background;

Sandy Creek Schools was formed from the former high schools of Edgar, Fairfield, and Glenvil, Nebraska.  The first year of operation for Sandy Creek was 1967-1968.  The school is located in the country four miles east of Fairfield.  The band directors traveled to the three elementary schools located in the various communities from 1967-1995.  The fall of 1995 a new elementary addition was added at the high school site and all students K-12 began attending that site.

Succession of Directors:  
1967-1970 – Jerry Muehling 1981-1991 – David Brinkman
1970-1972 – Charles Davidson  1991-1996 – Rick Matticks
1972-1978 – Wayne Moorhead  1996-2008 – Matt Bertrand
1978-Dec. 1979 – Kevin Bengtson  2008-2009 – Carrie Jensen
1980 (Jan) – 1981 Rex Hash  2009-2012 – Terry Zuelow
2012 – present – Andy Schneider

Highlights of band program:

The band has participated in District Music Contest, marched in parades mostly in Hastings and Grand Island, made trips to Kansas City, and participated in community activities over the years.


Brief historical background:

The first band was organized by Leo Moody in 1921 with 12 students.  By 1925 the band had increased to 26 members in 1929.  By 1937 the band membership had grown to 58 members.  From this point the band program just kept growing each year.

Succession of Directors:  
1921 - 1937 - Leo Moody  1991 -1994 - Randy Raines
1937 - 1949 - James J. Johnson 1994-1998 - Steve Miller; Dean Maxwell, assistant
1949 - 1991 - Georgene Diers 1998 - 2001 - Steve Miller; Mike Koch, assistant
1950 - 1960 - Vernon Forbes 2001 - 2002 - Mike Koch; Debra Koch, assistant
1960 - 1969 - Ronald Becker 2002 - present - Frank Ibero; Mike Koch, assistant
1969 - 1998 - Dean Maxwell  

Highlights of Band Program:

James Johnson’s band took 1st at Chadron Band Day and attended the State Fair.  In 1942 a combined show with Alliance was the first half time band show.   Dean and Georgene led bands that represented Nebraska at President John F. Kennedy’s Inaugural Parade, at the New York Worlds Fair, and at the Hemisfare in San Antonio, Texas.   Doc Severinson soloed with band.  The band represented Nebraska at the Portland Rose Festival, Portland Oregon, and performed at half-time of the Bronco-Kansas City Chiefs game. They took a Bicentennial European Tour and several other European tours.  A concert was performed for the University of Wyoming “Festival of Bands”.  The Marching Band presented a pre-game performance at University of Wyoming half-time, 3 half-time performances for Chadron State College, and parades at University of Wyoming, Laramie.  The wind Ensemble performed for NSBA.  The band also represented Nebraska at 200th Anniversary of our Capitol in Washington, D.C., and performed numerous other concerts and appearances - receiving all superiors in all activities.


Highlights of Band Program:

Under the direction of Georgene Diers the Junior High Band performed for NMEA, the advanced Band performed for NSBA on four occasions, and the Seventh Grade Band performed for NSBA on two occasions. The Scottsbluff Junior High Band received “Sudler Cup” as the outstanding Junior High Concert Band in the nation.  The Advanced Band presented demonstration for Music Majors at the University of Northern Colorado, gave two formal concerts each year, received a Superior rating at Sterling, CO contest, was named the Outstanding band several times at the University of Northern Colorado Band Day, the Outstanding Band several times at University of Wyoming Band day and the Outstanding band several times at Chadron State College Parades.  Mike Koch has had Middle School Bands perform for NSBA & NMEA.  Bands have received consistent superior ratings in marching competition, carrying on the tradition of excellence in the Junior High/Middle School program.


Brief historical background

The Schuyler band began as a community band in 1907.  The leader, Joe Simerka, and all the members of the band met in the Pesek backroom to practice.  In 1908, they moved their practice sessions to the newly built City Hall.  The band received their uniforms as a contribution from to Schuyler merchants.  In return, they disbanded, giving way to the local High School Band.

The High School Band was under the leadership of Leslie Marks.  In 1939, Iral Anderson came to Schuyler to conduct the band.  He was the man who originally wrote the school song “Onward Schuyler”.

Succession of Directors
1907 - Joe Simerka      1939-1955 - Iral Anderson
1955-1964 - William Wurtz 1964-1965 - Harry Jackson
1965-1966 - Gerald Bacon 1966-1968 - John Jorgensen
1968-1977 - David Young 1977-        - Gary Davis
2003-present – Doug Phillips  

Highlights of Band Program

With the arrival of William Wurtz in 1955, the band got its first taste of marching competition.  His first competition was the Grand Island “Harvest of Harmony” Band Festival.  The band also competed at AK SAR BEN in 1960, 61, 62 and 63, winning the class B competition each year. The band competed at Pershing and began a string of twenty one years of excellent and superior ratings.  The Schuyler High School Band was chosen as the first high school band to play for the Nebraska Bandmasters Convention in Lincoln. 

Harry Jackson received “superior” ratings at Pershing and District Music Contest during his year as Band Director.  Gerald Bacon, in his one year tenure as Band Director, received the sixth consecutive “superior” at Pershing and received a “superior” at District Music Contest.  The band received “excellent” ratings at Pershing and District Music Contest during his stay at Schuyler.

David Young arrived in 1968 and numerous changes were forthcoming.  The band continued to do well at Pershing and District Music Contest.  A “Jazz Ensemble” was added in 1971.  In 1972 Schuyler High School’s name was changed to Schuyler Central.  The band began raising funds for a planned trip to the Portland Rose Festival in 1973.  This was the first band trip for Schuyler.   The band took a second trip in 1977, traveling to Knottsberry Farm and Disneyland in California. 

Gary Davis became Band Director in 1977.  The band continued the intense competition schedule that was characteristic of David Young’s tenure.  Under Mr. Davis the band consistently received “superior” ratings at all marching competitions and District Music Contest.  In 1981 Mr. Davis took the band to the National Heritage Festival at the Shennandoah Conservatory of Music in Winchester, Virginia.


Brief historical background

The Seward High School Band has served as a core aspect of the educational experience in the lives of students throughout the history of Seward Public Schools.

Succession of Directors:
1960s-1974 – Dave Ehly  1998-2004 - Kristopher Moorhead
1970-1974 – John Mills 2004-2005 – Dan Frisbie
1974-1983 – Rex Cadwallader 2005-2008 – Leslie Stratton
1983-1998 – Dennis Coleman 2008-present – Ben E. Hanika

Highlights of Band Program

The Seward High Band program is designed to provide students a comprehensive music education as they participate in performing ensembles.  Currently, the band program consists of the following ensembles: the “Pride of Seward High School” Blue Jay Marching Band, Symphonic Band, Jazz Ensemble, and Percussion Ensemble.

The Seward High Bands have a proud tradition and history of musical achievement and success, as the bands have had many memorable performances.  This continues to be a source of pride for Seward High School and the community.  The Blue Jay Marching Band has received numerous Superior Ratings at the NSBA State Marching Festival and other competitions, the Symphonic Band has performed at the NSBA Concert Band Festival and the Jazz Ensemble has performed at festivals and contests in the region.

Enrollment in the Seward High Band Program rose from 90-100 students in the 1980s to nearly 170 students in the late 1990s.  Today, there are between 110-125 students who participate in instrumental music at Seward High School.  Additional courses offered through the Band Program include Music Theory, and Electronic Music.

In the mid 1980’s, under the direction of Dennis Coleman, Seward High was one of the first schools in Nebraska to establish a winter guard program for Color Guard members.  The Winter Guard remains active today, as the group performs and competes in the Heartland Winter Arts Association competitions and a Winter Guard International regional competition each year.


Succession of Directors:  
1951-1952 - Mrs. Dalton  1978-1980 - Ron Eles
1952-1953 - Joyce Hunt 1980-1981 - Larry Mackey
1953-1955 - Joseph Chapman 1982-1984 - Bill Lovgren
1955-1961 - Bill Jenkins 1985-1986 - Mr. Wiegert
1962-1967 - Ken Molzer 1986-1989 - Chris Plugge
1968-1969 - Galen Arbogast 1990-1992 - Mike Koch
1970-1972 - Lonnie Miner  1993-1994 - Angie Ferris
1973-1974 - Dale Dowdy 1995-1996 - Laura Hartman
1974-1976 - Mary Stoldorf 1996-2009 - Stan Johnson
1977-1978 - Mr. Malette 2009-present – Joshua Harris


Brief historical background:

In the late 1950's and early 1960's Sidney High School was a Class A high school.  It was during this time that the Sidney High School Band reached a level of excellence that was unparalleled throughout Nebraska at that time.  In 1951, Dean Killion arrived in Sidney and was the catalyst for a program that was the envy of Western Nebraska until 1974. In 1955, George Hinn replaced Dean Killion and continued this level of excellence. Prior to coming to Sidney, George Hinn had developed an outstanding program at Rushville High and, having witnessed the marching bands of Dean Killion and George Hinn, Greg McBride, Sports Editor of the Omaha World Hearld, suggested that the two bands should meet on a neutral field and have a “march off” to determine which was the better band.  Sid Phelps followed George Hinn and continued to produce fine bands.  In 1964 Duane E. Johnson took over the program.  During his tenure there were 550 students in the band program.  In 1967 Duane left for Hastings College to assume the leadership of the Hastings College Band.  In 1967 Larry Pippit took over the program, producing outstanding bands and remaining as director until 1974.

Succession of Directors:  
Grant Matthews 1974- Mr. McDonald
Henry Deines 1975- Mike Lewis
1951-1955 - Dean Killion  Mr. Hubbs
1955-1960 - George Hinn Jim Curtis
1960-1964 - Sid Phelps John Weidener
1964-1967 - Duane E. Johnson Mr. Olsen
1967-1974 - Larry Pippitt  2003-2007 - Mr. Ziegweld
  2007-present Nathan Beutler

Highlights of Band Program:

Dean Killion took the band to Enid Oklahoma in 1954.  George Hinn’s band represented Nebraska at the inauguration of President Dwight Eisenhower.  In 1957 the band participated in the Portland Rose Festival.  Sid Phelps took the band to Mexico City.  During Duane E. Johnson’s tenure the band won the Peace Bowl Marching Contest in North Platte, marched in the first Nebraskaland Days Parade (Then in Lincoln) and was selected for the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena in 1966.  The band also paraded down the main street at Disneyland in a twilight parade.  Larry Pippit took the band to the Aquatennial in Minneapolis in 1968-1969 and to the Orange Bowl in 1970-1971.  From 1951-1974 the band never received anything less than a Superior at District Music Contest.


Brief historical background:

Southern Valley High School is comprised of Beaver City, Orleans, and Oxford.  They built a new High School which is located south of Oxford.  The school included a 410 seat auditorium for music and drama events.

Succession of Directors:
Kelly Meyer 2004-2009 - Gaynelle Blickenstaff
Cindy Kauk 2009-2010 - Tim Klipp
2010-2012 – Jenna Ehrke 2012 – 2013 – C J Harden
2013-2015 - Zach Nathan  


Brief historical background:

South Platte High School is comprised of Big Springs and Brule.  The music program of the two schools was shared from 1993 until the district consolidation in 1995.

Succession of Directors:  
1993-1996 – Jared Eastvold 2002-interim Ronald Holscher
1996-1997 – Janette Musgrave 2003-2008 – Steve Lawlor
1997-2002 – Sheila Johnson 2008-2011 – Rose Munderloh
2011-present – Jody Ziola  


Brief historical background:

The Stanton band has an illustrious history.  A newspaper article states that the Stanton Concert Band of the eighteen nineties was outstanding but one of the first bands to receive state wide publicity was the band of 1905.  Mr. James Johnson organized the first Stanton High School Band in 1926.  He was replaced by his son “Stan” who provided able leadership before leaving for the Naval School of Music in 1941.

Succession of Directors:  
1926-1927 - Mr. James Johnson 1973-1974 - Douglas Dean
1927-1941 - Mr. Stanley Johnson 1974-1975 - Joe Tackett
1940-1941 - Glen Ewing 1975-1978 - Bernard Gordon
1941-1951 - John Abart 1978-1987 - Dennis Emke
1952-1956 - Allan Nyegaard 1987-1988 - Scott Kardell
1956-1957 - Jack Wells 1999-1991 - Tracy Briggs
1957-1959 - Lauren Sanders 1991-1992 - Gene Springer
1959-1962 - Rodney Wilbeck 1992-1993 - Denise Whipple
1962-1964 - Jack Watkins 1993-1999 - Greg Bergman
1964-1965 - Jerome Dalton 1999-2000- Glen Ogden
1965-1969 - Perry Dawes 2001-2005 - Mary Hahne
1969-1973 - John Svoboda 2005-2007 - John Mayo
2007-present - Melora Hirschman  

Highlights of Band Program:

The Stanton Band was winner of the Omaha Bee News $1000 Contest in 1928 and the Nebraska Statehood 75th Anniversary Contest held in Omaha in 1930.  The first annual Stanton Band Festival was held in July, 1945, under the Direction of Duane Schultz of Wisner.  The Stanton Stage Band played for Robert Kennedy’s appearance in Norfolk, under the direction of Perry Dawes. Under Perry Dawes, the band became highly competitive in field marching, receiving Superior ratings consistently.  Dennis Emke took the band to an even higher level, developing a band that was considered one of the better marching bands in the state.

The Stanton High School Band, under the direction of Greg Bergman, has earned Superior ratings at
marching contests in Norfolk, Malcolm, O’Neill and Madison The band has received consistent Superiors at District Music Contest throughout its history.


Brief historical background:

The Sterling school bands began in 1941, the directors unknown.  The band had 35 members that first year and ranged from 20 to 54 over the years since.  The first uniforms were purchased in 1942.  Rod Schmidt served as Band Director from 1961-1965 and developed a band by the 1964-65 school year that allowed the Choral and Band programs to receive nearly all 1’s in large ensemble, small ensembles and solo competition.  A Stage Band was formed in 1970 and performed throughout that decade. 

Succession of Directors:  
1941-1942 - unknown 1965-1966 - Barb Oberg
1942-1943 - Alice Irene Parminter 1966-1968 - Carolyn Weber
1943-1946 - unknown 1968-1971 - Roger Harvill
1946-1947 - Leon Hoff 1971-1980 - Gene Somer
1947-1949 - no bands 1980-1982 - Paul Cooper
1949-1950 - Donna Beth Bartels 1982-1984 - Mike Richardson
1950-1951 - Mrs. Koch and John Schwartz 1984-1995 - Margit Fischer
1951-1952 - Helmut Sienknecht 1995-1996 - Heather Bird
1952-1953 - Tom Pierson 1996-1999 - Brady Rohlf’s
1953-1958 - Charles Elwin 1999-2000 - Rita Ryenholl
1958-1961 - Faye Brinkman 2000-2001 - Myron Poessnecker
1961-1965 - Rod Schmidt 2001-2004 - Marcy Van Engen
2005-2008- Lindsey LeMunyan

2012 – present – Angel Renninger

Highlights of Band Program:

Beginning in 1942 the concert bands and solos/ensembles participated in the Mudecus Contest for many years, as well as District Music Contests after they were established, achieving many high ratings over the years.  The marching band competed in the Plattsmouth, Malcolm and Pershing contests several times.  The marching, concert and pep bands performed for years at the county fairs and other community festivals as well as many school athletic events.  The concert band achieved the high honor of being selected to perform in Kimball Hall for the 1984 Convention.


Brief Historical background:

Sunrise Middle School has had a band program since the school opened in 1996.  The band program offers band to 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students. The 6th and 7th bands are taught by a team of teachers that include the band director from Sunrise Middle School, the band director from Horizon Middle School, and the assistant director at Kearney High School.  The high school band director also helps every other day with the 8th grade band, The 6th and 7th grade bands at Sunrise meet on even calendar days and the 8th grade students meet daily.

A jazz band class was added to the schedule in 1999.  The class has 7th and 8th grade band students in it.  The Sunrise band director teaches this class.

Succession of Directors:

The bands at Sunrise Middle School have been under the direction of Jan Wymore from 1996 to the present time.

Highlights of the Band Program:

The 8th grade band students combine with the 8th grade band students from Horizon to compete in the UNK Band Day parade each year.  This band has won the middle school division every year they have competed.

The 7th grade band and jazz band have performed at the capitol during “Music in our Schools Week”.
Mrs. Wymore also served as the Middle Level Chair from 2003-2004.

The Sunrise band director hosts an honor band the first Saturday of February each year.  Students from area schools are invited to this event.  Each year at least 80 students from 25-30 different schools attend this one day clinic.  Bruce Pearson was the clinician for this event in 2000.


Brief historical background:

The first band in Syracuse-called the Cornet Band-was organized in 1893, under the leadership of E.C. Clark, performing as both a concert and marching band, including an appearance at the state fair where they camped out for three days.  The band continued to perform through the years that followed, and after the turn of the century it assumed the name of the Syracuse Commercial Band and musicians from Unadilla and Dunbar joined the group, then under the direction of John Anderson.

In the teens a bandstand was built around the flagpole on main street and weekly concerts were given on Saturday nights during the summer season.  The band was paid on a yearly basis for these performances. 

The 2nd World War disrupted the band, but some local members, under the leadership of Frank Sorrell, organized a school band, and Eugene Stoll was hired as the first director in 1948.  In 1951 he was succeeded by Mr. B. A. “Bud” Johnson.  Under Bud’s direction and teaching the band grew in numbers, winning numerous marching band contests over the years.  His concert Bands never received lower than a Division One in District Contests.

In the late 1960's, with the band’s enrollment having grown enough to warrant the hiring of another director, he remained as the elementary and jr. high director and Dale Duensing was hired as the high school director, and the band continued its tradition of excellence in all areas of performance during his tenure.

Succession of Directors:
E. C. Clark Greg Thomas
John Anderson Susan Sall
Eugene Stoll   Nolan Schmit 1995-2000
B.A. Johnson 1952-1975 Brady Rohlfs 2000-2005
Dale Duensing 2005-present - Erin Poe


Brief historical background:

The high school band was organized in the fall of 1912 by W. H. VanCleave.  The band was directed by G. E. Hickman and had 11 members.  There is no recorded history from 1924-1936.  The band was reorganized in 1938, starting as a pep band and reaching a membership of 32 during the year.  In 1939 the band consisted of 46 members.  There is no recorded history during the war years.  The band averaged about 45 members until the arrival of Joe Chapman in 1966 when numbers began to increase each year until reaching an average of 92 members from 1969-1978' In 1969 Tekemah merged with Herman to become Tekemah-Herman H.S.

Succession of Directors:  
1912 - G. E. Hickman 1956 - 1957 - Duane Miller
1924-1936 - no recorded history 1957 - 1958 - Kenneth Lane
1938- reorganized but no director listed 1959 - 1961 - Stuart Buell
1939 - 1940 - Miss Heyne 1962 - 1965 - Laird McCormick
1940 - 1941 - no recorded history 1966 - 1978 - Joe Chapman
1942 - 1943 - H. D. Harmon 1979 - 1983 - Sara Boeka
1943 - 1946 - no recorded history 1984 - 1985 - Kris Warnke
1947 - 1948 - Harry Hilton 1986 - 1987   Mr. Maher
1948 - 1949 - W. Howard Esaney 1987 - 1992 - Joe Chapman
1950 - 1951 - Keith Eck 1993 - 1997 - Jeff Fahrlander
1952 - 1953 - Donald Nelson 1997 - present - Jim Steinke
1954 - 1955  -Robert Zanger  
1955 - 1956  - Ed Tegtmeier  

Highlights of Band Program:

H. D Harmons band competed at Ak-Sarben and Lincoln.  The bands of Keith Eck and Donald Nelson participated in the Cornhustker Music Festival and district contest.  The bands of Laird McCormick competed at the Pershing Marching Contest and participated in band days at UNO and UNL.  Joe Chapman’s bands participated in numerous parades, UNL Band Day, Douglas County Centennial Celebration, and started a string of 11 straight superiors at music contest in 1968.  The band appeared in the Sun Bowl parade in 1975 and Disney World in 1991.  Sara Boeke took the band to the Sun Bowl in 1980.


Brief historical background:

Tri-County Schools was formed in 1967, combining the school districts of DeWitt, Swanton, and Plymouth.

Succession of Directors:  
1967-  Leon Morsing 1980-89 – Scot Thompson
1968-72 - Larry Allen 1990-91 – Dennis Eggerling
1973-74 S. Blackwood 1992-94 – Mark Mason
1975   Mr. Crawford 1995-01 – Eric Hansen
1976-77 Mr. Bateman 2001-08 – Danny Ehmke
1978-79 Mr. Monson 2009-present Nathan Morrissey


Brief historical background:

According to historical records, bands in Waverly had their beginnings with the formation of a brass band founded by Link Linscomb in 1884 or 1885, which evidently performed now and then until about 1892; then another one was formed for a brief time in 1915 by F. H. Van Wie.  An orchestra was started in 1926 by Mr. Luce and is believed to have continued until the early 1940's.  The first high school band was organized by Ken Frees in 1948 and has continued since then.

Succession of Directors:

High School Jr. High/Middle School

1948 -1949 - Ken Frees 1973 - 1974 - Jim Peterson
1949 -1950 - Ivan Miller 1974 - 1975 - Ralph Weinstein
1950 -1958 - Rolland Sandberg 1975 - 1977 - Bill Uhri
1958 -1991 - Bob Maag 1977 - 1986 - Jeff Hart
1991 -2008 - Kathy Dalby 1986 - 2001 - Ron Dalton
2008-present – Brady Rohlfs 2001 - present - Jim Kucera
Elementary: Joy Maag, Angie Wheeler, Nancy Anderson, Terri Bienfan, Burt Schernikau, Theresa

Highlights of Band Program:

When Mr. Sandberg came, there were approximately 50 members in the bands, with the total growing to over 400 by the late 1980's.  During his tenure, the Band Parents organization was formed to help raise funds for the bands.  The first uniforms were purchased in 1953 for the 35 high school band members.  In 1955, in an effort to raise funding for the band’s trip to the Tri-State Music Festival in Enid, OK in May of 1966, the organization held its first Soup Supper/Band Concert fund raiser, featuring all the grade levels of bands – an event that continues today as one of the longest running such events in the state & region, withattendance exceeding 1700 on one occasion.

The concert bands, in addition to performing several home concerts each year, have consistently achievedSuperior ratings at District Contest since 1951, and performed as a guest band at the NSBA Convention in 1983 and 1990.  The marching bands have an outstanding record of superior ratings in the Nebraska Marching Band Festival held at Pershing Auditorium in Lincoln from 1959-1992, the NSBA State Marching Contest, plus many contests held at Plattsmouth, Grand Island harvest of Harmony, Syracuse High School and the Applejack Festival in Nebraska City.

Other significant concert and marching achievements include: field competition at the Dakota Days Festival, Rapid City in1971; Red River Exhibition field and concert competition in Winnipeg, Canada in 1974 & 1980; awarded 2nd place in the Six Flags Over Mid-America Music Festival concert competition in St. Louis, MO in 1972; First Place in concert competition at the 1987 Dixie Classic Festival, Washington D. C./Richmond, VA; Disney World Parade every few years since 1991.  The bands also participated for many years at the Nebraska State Fair, Lincoln’s Star City Parade, Shrine Bowl Parade and many local events including the Waverly 4th of July Parade, Memorial Day Services, and others.

The Jazz Bands had their beginning in 1975, then known as the Stage Band until 1980, under the direction of Ralph Weinstein, followed by Bill Uhri, Jeff hart, Ron Dalton and Jim Kucera.  The bands have an outstanding record of Superior ratings at many district and other contests, performed at the Lawrence Welk Theater in Branson, MO, plus several performances in the State Capitol Rotunda during Music in Our Schools Week.  A unique event begun by Ron Dalton in the 1990's is the Jazz Night, an annual night club style of Big Band music where the audience is seated at tables around the dance floor in the school gym or commons area, with soft drinks and snacks available while they dance the night away

The Junior High/Middle School bands also have a record of outstanding achievements, including consistent Superior ratings at the Papillion Jr. High and the Malcolm High School Concert Contests; competed at the Worlds Of Fun Concert Competition for several years, where it was selected as the overall Sweepstakes Champion on one occasion; selected as NMEA guest band in 1989 & 2004; and many students have participated in the Elkhorn Band Olympics since its inception.


Brief historical background:

The Band Department was started in 1971 with Sr. Eileen Hambeau who remained as director until 1977.  They performed two concerts during the school year.  A Pep Band was added later and play for home boys basketball games.   The Pep Band eventually started playing for all athletic contests   In 1984 a marching band was formed and began marching at various festivals.  A Jazz Band was added to the instrumental activities and became very active performing within the community.

Succession of Directors:
1971-1977 - Sr. Eileen Hambeau 1984-1985 - Becky Kreikemeier
1977-1979 - Sr. Renee Mirkes 1985-present Jean Stieren
1979-1984 - Sr. Jolene Van Dike  

Highlights of Band Program:

The band plays for all athletic contests.  The band took its first band trip in 1996, performing at Worlds of Fun in Kansas City.


Brief historical background:

On March 30, 1947 three rural school districts combined to form District #66. District #46 was in the Underwood-Peony Park area. It had opened in 1876, and in 1925 the Underwood Community High School was added.  District #65 was in the Loveland area. It had opened as an Elementary School in 1932. District #31 was in the Oak Park area; the building had been built in 1871 and was called Oakdale.  The new district of the combined schools was called District #66 and Underwood was the H.S. for the students.  The combined districts were known as the Westside Community Schools.  With the addition of a new building in 1952 to house grades 7-12, the name Westside High School was born.  A few students who had played wind instruments were formed into a small band.

Junior High buildings were added as the student population of the district grew.  Arbor Heights Jr. High opened in 1958, Westbrook Jr. High opened in 1960 and Valley View Jr. High opened in 1968.  As the number of students declined in the late “seventies”, reorganization of buildings was accomplished.  For the school year of 187-88 the Arbor Heights building became Westside Middle School while Westbrook and Valley View Jr. Highs were close and converted to other uses within the district.

Succession of Directors:

1952-1954—Bill Kellogg

1954-1975---Darwyn (Tony) Snyder
1975-1982---Bob Jenkins 1982-1983---Bob Jenkins and Roger Groth, Team Teaching (Jenkins part time at UNL teaching oboe)
1983-2012 - Roger Groth 2012-2016---James Kordik
The following dirctors served at various times and did some elementary teaching as well
as Jr. High/Middle Schoolwork and some were also used as associate directors of the HS bands.
2012 to present--Tim Rischling, WHS/WMS 2008-2012---James Kordik. WHS/WMS
2011 to present---Matt Sheppard, WMS 1963-1996---Annette Berger
1868-2003---Jim Johnson, Valley View Jr. High 1970-2001---Tom Bogacz,Arbor Heights Jr. High
2003 to present---Gail Carpenter-Johnson 2001 to present--Mike Freeman
1958-1967---Paul Parker, Arbor Heights Jr. High 1975 to 2012---Roger Groth
2004-2007---Susan Saker 2001-2004---Doug Hauserman
1965-1970---Tom Sibbit, Arbor Heights Jr. High 1957-1958---Byron Havlicek
1956-1957 & 1960-1996---Joe Slavik, Westbrook Jr. High 1974-2012---Bob Jenkins,Westside Middle School
1964-1968---Art Jenson,Valley View Jr. High School 1973-1975---Chris Stovall
1962-1966---Joyce Johnson-Hamilton 1999-2001---Christopher Thomas

Highlights of Band Program:

Since the beginning of Westside H.S. Bands, the students in those groups have brought home many honors to Westside. In addition to an enviable record of contest ratings for both large and small groups, the bands have received many invitations to play for prestigious educational conventions and festivals. Besides the concert ensembles, the marching and jazz bands have been outstanding with trips to college Bowl games and many Jazz band contests and conventions.

.1959—The Warrior Marching Band performed in the Orange Bowl Festivities in Florida
1959, 1967, & 1971---Played concerts for the Nebraska Music Educator’s State Conventions
1969---Played for the Nebraska State Bandmaster’s Convention
1969---Played for the Iowa State Bandmaster’s Convention
1971---Played for the Music Educator’s National conference in Cincinnati
1971---Concert for the National Convention of the American School Band Director’s Association
1973---Six-Flags Contest in St. Louis (I rating)
1975---Music Educator’s National Conference in Omaha
1976-1983---Several concert tours were made to schools in Nebraska, sometimes on the way to ski excursions in Colorado.
1992---NSBA Honor Concert Band
1995---Jazz Band played for NSBA
2000---Trip to Sugar Bowl Festivities
2001---Trip to Alamo Bowl
2004---Trip to Sugar Bowl
2007---Trip to Alamo Bowl
2007---Next Generation Monterey Jazz Festival
2008---Jazz Band Concert for National School Boards Convention, Florida
2013---Disneyworld – Main Street Electrical Parade through Magic Kingdom
2014---Jazz Band Clinic with Doug Beach at Elmhurst College in Chicago
2015---Disneyworld – ‘You’re Instrumental’ Concert Band Workshop


Brief historical background:

The first instrumental band teacher at Wilber High School was Harvey M. Snider.  Prior to that, volunteer music teachers from the community organized bands of various kinds.  In the schools there were orchestras and a variety of music classes, but not an organized school band as we know it, taught by a regular instrumental teacher.  In 1966 Wilber merged with Clatonia becoming Wilber/Clatonia.

Succession of Directors:   
1938-1950 - Mr. Harvey M. Snider 1984-1988 - JerLene Finley
1950-1955 - Elmer Javorsky 1988-1989 - Kevin White
1955-1956 - Ralph Iverson 1989-1991 - Soni Erickson 
1956-1958 - Donald L. Kroger 1991-1999 - Russell Workman
1958-1961 - Norman L. Cizek 1999-2001 - John Franssen
1961-1964 - Erwin Hoffman 2001-1002 - Keith Crocker
1964-1966 - William McIninch 2002-present - Eric Hansen
1966-1984 - Duane C. Jorgensen  

Highlights of Band Program:

Harvey M. Snider was inducted into the Nebraska Music Educators Hall of Fame in 1987.  Duane C. Jorgensen was director of the band that was invited to participate in the Mardi Gras  Parade in New Orleans.  Russell Workman took the band to Florida in 1995 and 1999.


Brief historical background:

A man by the name of Burke had some sort of band prior to 1935.  The school band started the summer of 1935 with Red Eichoff as the director.  It began with summer concerts performed at the local bandstand.  The first uniform was a military cap with a cape, accenting white duck trousers.  In 1948 new uniforms were ordered featuring a black jacket with yellow trim and gray trousers.  In 1959 gold uniforms, trimmed in black were purchased.  In 1968 Jim Johnson became the first instrumental only director.  The Wisner-Pilger schools merged in 1969.  A Fine Arts Auditorium was built in 1982.

Succession of Directors:  
1935-1950 - Herman (Red) Eichoff 1986-1988 - Bruce Linafelter
1950-1952 - Duane Schulz 1988-1991 - Teresa Schnoor
1952-1957 - Bob Rosenquist 1991-1994 - Paul Gausman
1957-1958 - Stuart Buell 1994-1995 - Jed O’Leary
1958-1962 - Jack Herweg 1995-1999 - Kate Bergman
1962-1966 - Joe Skutchan 1999-2000 - Mark Melick
1966-1968 - Gordon Harper 2000-2003 - Rich Munson
1968-1986 - Jim Johnson 2003-2007 - Wendy Bergstadt
  2007-2008 – Jaci Destines
  2008-present – Larry Jones

Highlights of Band Program:

The Wisner-Pilger Marching Contest was organized in 1971.  The Wisner-Pilger band performed for NSBA in 1971.  The following events took place during Jim Johnson’s tenure: 1979 - Attended the California Music Festival; 1982, won the Connestoga Mall Trophy at Harvest of Harmony in Grand Island; winner of the Class A Marching Competition in Winnipeg, Canada; 1983, performed at UNL Football Game;1985, winner of 4 trophies at Harvest of Harmony in Grand Island including Connestoga Mall Traveling Trophy for best overall band, KOLN/KGIN TV 7 Wendy’s Trophy for best band in competition, superior rating in field competition and top overall band of 34 competing field bands.  Bruce Linafelter took the band to Disneyland/California.  Kate Bergman’s bands received three superior ratings for concert band at District Music Contest and in 1996 the band received a superior at NSBA Marching Contest, the only A, C, or D band to receive a superior.


Brief historical background:

The history of the Wymore Band has always been a treasure to its people.  As early as 1900 a “Town Band” has been active, performing in the Burlington Park.  Most memorable of these bands was the Burnham Orchestra.  The “Town Band” was continued up until the early forties at which time the Wymore High School Band took over its duties.  The “Town Band” was given $800 to operate on. $400 went to the Band and $400 to be divided among the players. 

In the summer of 1934 two Wymore women contacted Marysville, KS directors concerning instrumental lessons for Wymore students. Lessons began the next school year.  In 1934 and 1935 the Musical Coeds gave a further boost to music in the Wymore Schools.  In 1935 the first music instructor was hired.

Succession of Directors:  
1961-1962 - Bill Jenkins 1962-1964 - Al Micheltree
Dorothy Douglas 1964-1965 - R. Oehring
Doris Dickinson 1965-1966 - P. Cooper
Mr. Butler   1966-1974 - L. Borland
Dwight Catlett 1974-1975 - Mike Murphy
Mr. Cummings 1975-1978 - Jeff Meyer
John Burnau 1978-1979 - Kim McCord
Clarence Garder 1979-1986 - Ann Davis
James Ratliff 1986-1991 - Michelle Gerdes
1956-1959 - Phil Murphy 1991-2002 - Shelly Hennecke
1959-1960 - Byron Havlicek 2002-present - Shelly Gerdes
1960-1961 - J. Chatelain  

Highlights of Band Program:

The band initially prospered under the seven years of leadership of Mr. Cummings.


Brief historical background:

The York Public School is comprised of York High School, Middle School and currently one Elementary. York High School is classified by NSAA as a Class B school.

Succession of Directors:

1984-1988: Richard Cain

1988-2000: James S. Kordik

2000-Present: Curtis Forsch

Highlights of Band Program:

YORK HIGH DUKES Band Performance Results (1988-1999)
Yorkfest Parade – 2nd Place Trophy – Class A/B
Korean War Veterans Reunion Parade – Participation Trophy
Harvest of Harmony Parade – 4th Place -
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Excellent Rating
Malcolm Clipper Marching Competition – Excellent Rating
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Excellent Rating (II + II + II = II)
Pikes Peak Music Festival – Very Good Trophy & Plaque

Yorkfest Parade – 2nd Place Trophy - Class A
Harvest of Harmony Parade – 1st Place Trophy - Class A
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Excellent Rating
Lincoln Public Schools Field Competition – Excellent Rating
Malcolm Clipper Marching Competition – Excellent Rating
Nebraska State Bandmasters Association – Good Rating
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Excellent Rating (I + II + II = II)
Nebraskaland Days Parade – 2nd Place Plaque

Yorkfest Parade
–  1st Place Trophy – Class A/B
–  2nd Place Trophy – Over-All
Harvest of Harmony Parade –  Place Trophy - Class A
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Excellent Rating
Malcolm Clipper Marching Competition – Excellent Rating
N.S.B.A. Marching Band Festival – Superior Rating Trophy – Superior Rating
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Excellent Rating (I + II+ + III+ = II)

Yorkfest Parade
–  1st Place Trophy – Class A/B
– Governors Trophy – Best Band Any Class
Harvest of Harmony Parade –  Place Trophy - Class A
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Excellent Rating – Class A
Minden Bandfest Parade Competition -  Superior Rating Trophy
Minden Bandfest Field Competition – Superior Rating Trophy
Nebraska State Bandmasters Association – Superior Rating Trophy – Class A
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Superior Plaque (I + I + I = I)

Yorkfest Parade
– 2nd Place Trophy – Class A/B
– 2nd Place Trophy – Over-All
UN-Kearney Band Day Parade
– 3rd Place Drum Major Over-All – Dan Tuttle
– 4th Place Drum Line Over-All
– 1st Place Trophy – Class A
Harvest of Harmony Parade – 4th Place – Class A
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Excellent Rating
Minden Bandfest Parade Competition -  Superior Rating Trophy (90 pts.)
Minden Bandfest Field Competition – Excellent Rating
N.S.B.A. Marching Band Festival – Superior Rating Trophy – Superior Rating
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Excellent Rating (I + II+ + II = II)
Disney Magic Music Days Parade – Performance Trophy
8th Grade JUNIOR DUKES Band Performance Results
Malcolm Jr. High Band Contest – Concert Band - Superior Rating Plaque

Yorkfest Parade
– 2nd Place Trophy – Class A/B (86 pts.)
– 2nd Place Trophy – Over All
Harvest of Harmony Parade – 4th Place – Class A
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Excellent Rating
Minden Bandfest Parade Competition -  Superior Rating Trophy (87 pts.)
Minden Bandfest Field Competition – Excellent Rating Trophy
N.S.B.A. Marching Band Festival – Excellent Rating Trophy–No Superiors given
Star City Parade/Lincoln – 1st Place Trophy – Large Band Division
N.S.B.A. Concert Band Festival – Participation Plaque
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Superior Plaque (I+ + I+ I = I)
8th Grade JUNIOR DUKES Band Performance Results
Yorfest Kiddie Parade - Exhibition
Harvest of Harmony Parade – 7th Place – Junior High Class
Minden Bandfest Parade Competition – 2nd Place – Junior High Class

Yorkfest Parade
– 1st Place Trophy - Class A/B
– Governors Trophy – Best Band Any Class

UN-Kearney Band Day Parade
– 1st Place Trophy – Class A/B
– Best Drum Major – Any Class – Lester Miller III
Harvest of Harmony Parade Queen Candidate – Brooke Hubbard Queen Finalist
Harvest of Harmony Parade – 2nd Place Trophy – Class A
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Superior Rating Trophy – Class A
Minden Bandfest Parade – Superior Rating Trophy
N.S.B.A. Marching Band Festival – Excellent Rating Trophy – Class A
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Excellent Rating (I + II+ + II+ = II)
8th Grade JUNIOR DUKES Band Performance Results
Malcolm Jr. High Band Contest – Concert Band - Superior Rating Plaque

Yorkfest Parade – 1st Place Trophy - Class A/B
UN-Kearney Band Day Parade
– 1st Place Trophy – Class A/B
– Best Drum Major Trophy - Any Class - Lester Miller III
– Pre-Parade Inspection Trophy – Any Class
– Best Drum Line Trophy – Any Class
Harvest of Harmony Parade – 3rd Place – Class A
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Excellent Rating – Class A
N.S.B.A. Marching Band Festival – Excellent Rating Trophy – Class A
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Excellent Rating (I + II+ + II+ = II)
8th Grade JUNIOR DUKES Band Performance Results
Yorfest Kiddie Parade – Exhibition
UN-Kearney Parade Competition – 2nd Place – Junior High Class
Harvest of Harmony Parade – Exhibition
Malcolm Jr. High Band Contest – Concert Band - Superior Rating Plaque

Yorkfest Parade – 1st Place Trophy - Class A/B
UN-Kearney Band Day Parade
– 1st Place Trophy – Class A/B
– Best Over All Drum Line Trophy
– Best Over All Sweepstakes Trophy
Harvest of Harmony Parade – 4th Place – Class A
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Excellent Rating
N.S.B.A. Marching Band Festival – Excellent Rating Trophy – Class A
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Excellent Rating (I + I+ + II+ = I)
8th Grade JUNIOR DUKES Band Performance Results
UN-Kearney Parade Competition – 1st Place Trophy – Junior High Class
Malcolm Jr. High Band Contest – Concert Band - Superior Rating Plaque

Yorkfest Parade
– 1st Place Trophy - Class A/B
– Governors Trophy – Best Band Any Class
UN-Kearney Band Day Parade
– 1st Place Trophy – Class A/B
– Best Over All Drum Line Trophy
– Best Over All Drum Major Trophy – Maureen Nowak
Harvest of Harmony Parade – 1st Place – Class A
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Superior Rating Trophy
Plattsmouth Marching Band Invitational Competition – Superior Rating Trophy
N.S.B.A. Marching Band Festival – Superior Rating Trophy – Class A
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Excellent Rating (I + I + I = I)
8th Grade JUNIOR DUKES Band Performance Results
UN-Kearney Parade Competition – 2nd Place Trophy – Junior High Class

Yorkfest Parade
– 1st Place Trophy - Class A/B
– 2nd Over All
Nebraska City Applejack Parade – 4th Place – Class AA/A/B
UN-Kearney Band Day Parade – 2nd Place Trophy – Class A
Harvest of Harmony Parade – 2nd Place Runner-up Trophy – Class A
Star City Parade – 1st Place Trophy – Large Band Division
N.S.B.A. Concert Band Festival – Performance Plaque
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Excellent Rating (I + II + II = II)

Yorkfest Parade – 2nd Place Trophy - Class A/B
Harvest of Harmony Parade
– 1st Place Trophy – Class A
– 3rd Place – Over All
Harvest of Harmony Field Competition – Excellent Rating – Class A
Lincoln High LINKS Field Marching Contest
– Excellent Rating Trophy – Class A
– Class A Grand Champion Trophy
N.S.B.A. Marching Band Festival – Superior Rating Trophy – Class A
District Music Contest – Concert Band – Superior Plaque (I + I + I = I)






Brief historical background:

In 1977 the school district moved from having one music teacher to separate Band and Vocal instructors.  The 1979 students were mostly underclassmen.  The band had never marched in field competition but began competitive marching in 1979.  The band won 7 superior ratings in the first 7 marching contests it entered, including three years at the Pershing Marching Festival.

Succession of Directors:  
-1976 - Rudy Srb 1991-1998 - Mary Pfoltner
1976-1979 - Deb Ebeler 1998-1999 - Richard Sivertson
1979-1985 - Jeff James 1999-2002 - Todd Cook
1985-1991 - Peter Wilger 2002-2007 - Kevin Koopman
2007-2012 – Doug Ramsey 2012 – 2015 – Kevin Koopman
2015 - present Zach Nathan  

Highlights of Band Program:

The band took it first overnight trip to Kansas City in 1982, returning in 1984.  In 1994 and 1998 the band participated in the “Music in the Parks” festival, winning the 1st place in 1998.  The band has earned
consistent Superior ratings at District Music Contest.  At the 1991 District Music Contest, the band, jazz band, and all solos and ensembles earned Superior ratings.  The junior high and/or elementary school has participated in solo/ensemble contest in many years.


Brief historical background

The Nebraska State Normal School at Chadron opened in 1911.  It was the fourth such institution in the state.  Its name was changed to Nebraska State Teachers College at Chadron in 1948 and has been Chadron State College since 1962.  The college has sponsored a National High School Band Camp, hosted an annual Band Day for over 50 years and, for 32 years, has given the region’s students an opportunity to participate in the High Plains Festival.  This festival, founded by Dr. William Winkle features two bands and two choruses which rehearse for two days and give a concluding concert.

In the early years from 1912 to the spring of 1936 at Chadron State Normal School, there was not a clear delineation between band and orchestra directors.  From 1936, there are pictures of bands at the Chadron State Normal School.  Yet, it is clear that the music program included teaching students to be able to teach band, orchestra, and choir from 1911 to the present day music program at Chadron State College.

Succession of Directors:  
1912-1913 - Jessie B. Elliot 1939-1945 - Roy Peterson
1913-1916 - Edith Copland 1945-1948 - Val Hill
1917-1918 - Paul Thomas 1948-1952 - Dale Halleck
1918-1920 - Sewall Townsend 1952-1953 - George Anderson
1920-1926 - Roy Peterson 1953-1957 - David Missal
1936-1937 - George Costly 1957-1963 - Randolph Foster
1937-1938 - Roy Peterson 1963-1971-Dr.Charles Harrington
1938-1939 - Leo Moody 1971- 2009 - Dr. William Winkle
  2010 – Present – Adam Lambert

The Chadron State Wind Ensemble has been actively performing throughout the United States with concerts in Wisconsin, Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, California, Nevada, Wyoming, South Dakota, and Nebraska.  They have performed at the Six Flags of Dallas, Texas, the Nebraska Music Educators Association and as a reading band for NSBA.  The Wind Ensemble has been part of the Nebraska Band Consortium which commissions new band works for Wind Band for the last 25 years.

The band program now consists of the Show Band (Halftime entertainment for football games minus the marching), Wind Ensemble, Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Music Combo, Woodwind Ensembles, Percussion Ensembles and Brass Ensembles.  Dr. Winkle’s Tuba Ensembles and Merry Christmas Tuba Ensembles have become well-known throughout a three state region.



Brief historical background:

The Doane College Band was formed more than 120 years ago, as a means to “add inspiration to the military drill” and encourage the study of cornet.  Fifteen members made up the first band, founded in 1891 by music conservatory director H. Bert King.

The band easily fulfilled its original purpose. The inspiration it provided has lasted more than a century, through world wars and both prosperous and turbulent times.  Today, it is as beloved a symbol of Doane as the college mascot.  Its history spans more than 18 band directors and thousands of alumni.

The original band followed a glee club established in 1880 and an orchestra established for ensemble violin practice in 1888.  King remained as the first band director until 1897.  Student leaders maintained the band until the next director, Robert Lithgow Dick, took charge while still a student and upon graduation in 1904, joined the conservatory faculty as music instructor and band director. He remained until World War I.

In the years before the war, the band was highly regarded, as attested by an article in “The Junior Bug” published by the junior class in 1904.
“A good band is an organization which does much to enliven college life and arouse spirit.  Doane has such a band.  Indeed, it can, with little fear of contradiction, be said that Doane has the best college band in the state.  It numbers, 16 members, every one of whom is a player of no little experience.  The success of the organization is, in large measure, due to the faithful, enthusiastic work of the leader, Robert Dick. Throughout the year, two hours a week have been spent in practicing high-grade music and enjoyable evening concerts are being given on campus again this spring, as they were two years ago.”

After World War 1 the Doane band appears to have had a series of student leaders until 1923 when W.W. Huxford, a physics professor who had come to the college the year before, took over the band.  Huxford was followed in 1925 by C. Burdett Wolfe, the most innovative director to date.  In 1927 Wolfe founded the Doane Tiger Band to provide “spirit and pep” at the school’s athletic events.  This band still exists to this day --  100 strong!  In 1931 Wolfe created the Girl’s Drum Corps which was immensely popular and remained so until the late 1950s.

If it had not been for Crete High School band director Lumir Havlicek, there might not have been a band during World War II.  Havlicek led the organization through the war years.  Havlicek was a well known band direction of the time, having conducted the 110th Medical Regiment Band in the 1920’s and 30’s (Which became the 43rd Army National Guard Band).  He was also a composer of some renown composing several local favorites – On the Big blue, The Pride of the Prairie, Sky Pilot, and Trailblazer Overture.

Post-war directors include Anthony Perrella in the late 40’s, Eugene Stoll and Larry Havlicek (the son of Lumir) in the 50’s, Paul Whear in the 60’s (also a well-known composer), and James Mabry in the early 70’s. Dr. Hubert Brown then led the Doane Band from 1974 to 1988.  During Brown’s tenure the Doane band program hosted a jazz Festival that featured many great artists, including Clark Terry, Ed Shaunnessy.

In 1988, Doug Stotter became band director and immediately brought innovations to the band program.  He rearranged the school songs, created a wind ensemble and recruited a number of talented students.  By 1991, the concert band had 65 players, who performed for the Nebraska Music Educators Convention.  When Stotter left to pursue doctoral work, Rob Franzblau arrived as visiting assistant professor and sought to continue the program and the high standards it had reached.  The band performed for the NSBA Convention in 1992.

In 1993, Dr. Jay Gilbert was appointed director of instrumental music.  He, too, sought to build on the traditions of the program.  The band has participated in both NMEA and NSBA conventions and toured throughout the region.  During Gilbert’s tenure, the Tiger Pep Band revitalized and, in 1999, was cited by the Lincoln Journal-Star as the most entertaining band in the conference.

In 2000-2001, Gilbert redefined the band program to allow for greater flexibility in participation.  The Symphonic Wind Ensemble (SWE) was created to provide students with the opportunity to perform serious wind-band repertoire at a high artistic level.  Since its inception, SWE has appeared multiple times at the Nebraska Music Educators Association conventions and Nebraska State Bandmasters Association Conventions.  The Concert Band allows students to participate in band with a minimal time commitment.  The Tiger Pep Band and Jazz Ensemble continue to play important supportive roles in the band program.

Succession of Directors:  
1891- H. Bert King 60's - Paul Whear
1897- Robert Dick 70's - James Mabry
War years- Lumir Havlicek 1988-1993-DougStotter/Rob Franzblau
Late 40's - Anthony Parella 1993 - present - Jay Gilbert
50's - Gene Stoll & Larry Havlicek  

Highlights of Band Program:

The music that began on campus so long ago has reached audiences nationwide.  The Doane Band program has toured throughout the United State and performed in Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Texas, Washington, Wisconsin, Wyoming and the District of Columbia.  The band has also toured Nebraska, extensively, playing for thousands of high-school students.

The Doane Bands have played for every major campus event, including the dedication ceremonies for the Lied Science and Mathematics Building, Hansen Leadership hall, The Chab Weyers Education and Hixson Lied Art Building and the George and Sally Haddix Recreation and Athletic Center.  The band was there for the inaugurations of Doane Presidents Jonathan Brand and Jacque Carter, decades of opening convocations and commencements, and a special program on Veterans Day that featured prominent military and government leaders in Nebraska.

Dr. Gilbert is the longest serving band director in Doane’s history.  He has also served as Chair of the Music Department since 1994.  Additionally, the program now includes several outstanding applied faculty teaching each of the wind and percussion instruments.  Among those are Tom Kelly, principal trumpet and leader of the Plymouth Brass, and James Krutz, a percussionist from Seward.  Both of these colleagues have taught with Gilbert for nearly 20 years.  Music of the success can be attributed to the strong working relationship amongst the members of the full and part-time faculty, including Dianne Ferguson, professor piano and director of academic studies; Kurt Runestad, director of choral activities, and Kathy Ohlman, who was hired in 2007 to bring fresh perspectives to the music education program.  Her success allowed the college to hire a second music education faulty member in the 2011-2012 school year.

The fifteen players in 1891 to 111 members in 2011 the Doane Band still respects its long history, continues to be a vital part of the overall artistic, ceremonial and school spirit life of Doane, and hope to proudly represent the college for many more years to come.


Brief historical background

The Grace University Concert Band began in 1954 and continues today.  The Grace University Concert Band is open to students at Grace University as well as members of the community.  The band performs about 10 concerts a year including a spring tour

Succession of Directors:  
1954-1959 - Henry Wiebe 1970-1979 - Daniel Frizane
1959-1960 - Marlene Langosch 1980-1982 - Rick Rowell
1961-1963 - Elaine Neiman 1982-1993 - No band
1963-1969 - Ray Lutke 1994-present Jeff James


Band with head master at Shanxi Modern Bilingual School in Taiyuan.

Rebekah Isaac and Alicia Seevers with new friend. Rebekah Poeffel with new friend at Roseland Christian School


Brief historical background:

The first Band Director at Hastings College was Horace M. Cunningham who arrived on campus in 1924.  The first band was pretty much a “pick-up” band and he stated during that year: “I’m looking forward to the day that we can own our own instruments, have uniforms and play well enough to give a public concert”. 

The Band purchased new uniforms for the 1925-1926 school year and began purchasing school instruments.

The Hastings College Band has exhibited many firsts after James M. King arrived to take over the band in 1929.  The Hastings College Band was known as the “Grand daddy of Nebraska Touring Bands.  The band began touring in 1934 and while on tour in 1935 the band performed live on WOW in Omaha, the first band in Nebraska to be broadcast live.  In 1950 the band suffered and agonizing loss as fire destroyed their rehearsal hall, the Chapel, and 45 instruments.  Fuhr Hall, the music building, had a major fire in 1990 which destroyed    band music and gutted the band office.

Succession of Directors:  
1924-1929 - Horace M. Cunningham 1985-1987 - Dr. Tom O’Neal
1929-1967 - Dr. James M. King 1987-1994 - Dr. Keith Ramsden
1967-1985 - Dr. Duane E. Johnson 1995-2008 - Dr. Daniel Schmidt
  2008-present - Dr. Daniel Laing

Highlights of Band Program:

While James M. King was director the band performed a concert in Orchestra Hall in Chicago in 1950.  The band continued a tradition of an annual tour throughout his entire tenure at Hastings College.  Jimmy was also one of the organizers of the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association---serving as chair of the constitution committee.

Duane Johnson continued the annual tours with these tours including 30 states and a tour of Canada.  The band also performed for the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association, the Nebraska Music Educators Association and was selected, by audition, to perform for a bi-regional convention of MENC in Omaha.  The marching band always had 80-110 members and took great pride in marching at the football games and supporting the basketball team.  The band never missed a home game throughout Duane’s tenure and also traveled to numerous out-of-town games.

Under the direction of Tom O’Neal the band performed at half-time of a Denver Bronocs football game and performed for the Nebraska State Bandmasters Convention.  Keith Ramsden had a band selected to perform for the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association as did Dan Schmidt. Dan Schmidt took the band on an ocean cruise in 2000 and to Carnegie Hall in New York City in 2004.

Hastings College is the only college in the Great Plains Athletic Conference to field a marching band.  The general philosophy is that students aspiring to become Band Directors have the experience of a collegiate marching band.


Brief historical background:

The first reference to a Nebraska Wesleyan band was around 1900.  The first band at NWU was an 18 member “Wesleyan Cadet Band”.  The band was organized   help the students march parades and do cadet work.”  The band program now consists of eleven different instrumental ensembles.

Succesion of Directors:  
1889-92;   Ida C. Young 1926-31: Henry Knies
1892-93;   Oris S. Schnauffer 1931-33: Vernon Forbes
1893-94:   August Hagenow 1933-35; William A. Fowler
1894-02:   None 1935-36; Leroy H. Giles
1902-05;   Henry Stackelberg 1936-37: Lyle Welch
1905-06:   August Hagenow 1937-38; Thomas H. Mendenhall
1906-11:   None 1938-40: Alfred B. Boberg
1911-13:   G. H. Greene 1940-41: Glen E. Ewing
1941-46: None 1946-51: Leslie R. Marks
1919-21:   Ford Harper 1951-52: George Anderson
1921-22:   None 1952-80: Robert Marshall
1922-23;   William S. Larson 1980-00: Herb Dregalla, Jr.
1923-24:   Robert Shephard 2000-03: Pat Fortney
1924-26:   Albert De Cumpston 2003-present: Sam Zitek
1926-27:   Leland M. Gobel  

Highlights of Band Program:

Robert Marshall’s bands performed annually for the Chicago Bears, performing halftime shows.  His bands toured annually throughout the Mid-West.  Under the baton of Herb Dregalla, the Symphonic Band has
performed at the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association and Nebraska Music Educators Conventions.  The Symphonic Band toured throughout the United States.  The band took an international tour to Japan in 1996. Pat Fortney’s band traveled to Australia, and Sam Zitek’s bands to Germany, the Czech Republic, Austria, Switzerland, Italy and France.  Under Zitek’s direction, the Symphonic Band performed at the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association and the Nebraska Music Educators Conventions. The band has regularly had works commissioned for the band.


Brief historical background;

The Northeast College/Community Band is an out-growth of the Norfolk Summer Community Band that began in the early 1980’s with Don Schumacher as the director.  The band would rehearse in June and rehearse in June and play in the band stand of Central Park at the end of the Fourth of July parade.  Don returned to teaching at Pierce and Jim Luellen assumed the duties as director.  In the summer of 1986, Jim Bouillion, head of the music department at Northeast College, approached Jim Luellen with the idea of having college students play in the band and having it run during the school year.  This combination of students and community members allowed the college students the opportunity to have a concert band experience.

The band rehearsed for two hours on Monday evenings in the band room of the Junior High in Norfolk beginning in late August 1986. Due to newspaper publicity and recruiting the turn-out was good.  The first concert was given on November 24, 1986 in the Northeast Community College Activities Center Theater. The initial band was a well-balanced ensemble of 38 members. 

Succession of Directors:  
Don Schmacher Jim Luellen
Dr. Randall Neuharth  

Highlights of Band Program:

The band continued to grow and by the November Concert of 1987 there were 47 in the group.  A tape was submitted to the selection committee of NSBA for their convention.  The group was selected to present the opening concert of their convention at Kimball Hall in Lincoln on March 3, 1988. There were 51 in the band for that performance.  The band usually gave two concerts during the school year, one in the fall and one in the spring.

After a few years the group moved their rehearsals to the College where it continues to practice on Monday evenings.  The band now gave concerts combined with the College Choir.  Jim Luellen continued to direct the band until 2001 when he retired and Dr. Randall Neuharth became the band director for the Northeast College/Community Band.


Brief historical background:

The University Music Department has been a part of the institution since the University of Omaha was founded in 1908.  However, there were no organized bands until 1928.  In September of that year, the university band was officially started.  During 1928 the university’s 35 piece band was under the direction of Henry W. Wendland, taking trips and marching parades.  Although the band had many performances that year the organization did not survive past the first year.  It would be several years before the university established another marching or concert band.

Succession of Directors:  
1928-1929 - Henry W. Wendlund 1952-1958 - Arthur Custer
1929-1950 - Unknown 1958-1968 - Jack Maleck
1950-1951 - V.J. Kennedy 1968-1978 - Reginald Schive
1951-1952 - Robert Fiester 1978-present - Dr. James Saker
Assistant Directors:  
1982-1986 - Peter Vivona 1992-1996 - James Sawyer
1986-1988 - Thomas Wubbenhorst 1996-1997 - Mark Johnson
1988-1989 - Jerry Tolson 1997-2003 - Tim Yontz
1989-present - Steve Rehbein  

Highlights of Band Program:

In September 1951, Dr. Robert Fiester formed an 84 piece marching Band that played at home football games and pep rallies.  He had the band perform two concerts in the spring.  In addition, they performed for many campus and local festivities.  In 1957, instrumental activities included much more than the marching and concert bands.Various ensemble groups were added to the instrumental program including a Clarinet Quartet and a Brass Sextet were featured in the five concerts at the University and four concerts at area high schools.  In 1959, the Music Department started the annual band day which was held annually until 1983.  In 1962 new uniforms were purchased for the “Omaha University Marching Indians”.With the arrival of Reginald Schive initiated the Great Plains Jazz Festival.  With the arrival of James Saker, the band doubled in size and had insufficient uniforms–performing in T-shirts and slacks.  Dr. Saker also organized the first auditioned concert band.  With the addition of the Symphonic Wind Ensemble and a Basketball Band the number of bands increased to five.1979 saw the beginning of appearances for the Nebraska Music Educators Association and the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association.  The first of numerous invitations to perform at NFL games came with an invitation from the Kansas City Chiefs.  The band also performed for the Denver Broncos in 1992 and the Minnesota Vikings in 1995.

The University Band has received many awards and honors.  They took first place in the Sioux City Corn Bowl Parade in 1983, led the 50th Anniversary Parade of Harvest of Harmony, and have been the official band of the River City Roundup Parade.  The Marching Band was also the official ceremonial band for appearances by Ronald Reagan in 1986 and President Bush in 1989 during visits to Nebraska.  The Wind Ensemble has also received numerous honors and recognitions.  The Wind Ensemble was the featured performance group at the Mid-America Collegiate Band Conference in 1984.  The group was chosen to perform for the International Convention of the Association of Concert Bands in 1991 and the North Central Division Conference of CBDNA in 1994.  In addition, the Wind Ensemble toured Europe in 1996.  The University of Nebraska at Omaha has commissioned and Premiered several pieces for Wind Ensemble.  The Jazz program has also had its share of success with wins at the Wichita Jazz Festival and the Northern Colorado Jazz Festival.  In addition, they were selected to perform for NSBA in 1997.


Brief historical background:

The band program at the University of Nebraska at Kearney [Kearney State Normal School (1905-1921), Kearney State Teacher's College (1921-1963), Kearney State College (1963-1991)] was organized in 1907. The organization variously performed as a marching band and an orchestra for the first several years; a regular concert band was not consistently developed until the late 1940s. A Wind Ensemble was put into place in 1967. The marching band (known as The Pride of the Plains) modernized in 1966. From 1966 to 2010 the marching band would become a concert band (named University Band in fall terms and Symphonic Band in spring terms) for the remainder of the school year after football season ended. The concert band program was re-enlarged to include a Wind Ensemble in 1991. The Wind Ensemble again became a year-round organization starting in 2010.

Succession of Directors:  

1907-1914 - George Porter               

1914-1926 - Benjamin Patterson

1926-1930 - R.C. Rogers

1930-1933 - Raymond Nazer        
1933-1934 - Roland Truitt 1934-1935 - Harland Shennum
1936-1947 - Harold Cerny 1947-1954 - Robert House
1954-1955 - Ashford Kelly

1955-1957 - Dr. Robert House

1957-1958 - Angelo Cucci 1958-1962 (Fall) - Gary Thomas
1963 (Spring) (Thomas on leave) - Paul McEnderfer 1963-1964 - Dr. Gary Thomas
1964-1966 - Donald Stanley 1966-1969 - Ken Rumery
1969-1977 – Ron Crocker         1977-1978 (Crocker on leave) - Jennings Glenn
1978-1990 – Dr. Ron Crocker 1990-2005 – Dr. Gary Davisr
2005-2010 – Dr. Neal Schnoor 2010-present – Duane Bierman
Assistant Directors:  
1966-1969 – Ron Crocker 1973-1974 – Jim Payne
1969-1970 – Clayton Heath

1998-2005 – Neal Schnoor

1970-1973 – Don Meredith 2005-2010 – Gary Davis
2010-2012 - Michael Beard 2012-present – Dr. Brian Alber

Highlights of band program:

The University Band performed for President Clinton during his visit to UNK in 1999. The Pride of the Plains Marching Band performed international tours in Italy in 2006 and 2009, a tour in France and Italy in 2012, and in Norway in 2015. The Symphonic Band performed at the NMEA Convention in 1994 and 1997. The University Band performed at NMEA in 2000 and 2005. The Wind Ensemble performed at the NSBA Convention in 1996, 1999, and 2003, and at NMEA in 2014. Chapters of Tau Beta Sigma and Kappa Kappa Psi, the National Honorary Band Sorority and Fraternity, were established at UNK in 1993. The marching band performed at a Minnesota Vikings halftime on national television in November of 1970; that performance was voted one of the top five halftime shows of the season by the halftime coordinators for all the professional teams


Brief historical background:

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln band program was founded in 1879. Because collegiate football and marching bands are so indelibly linked in the minds of today’s fans, most believe that the two programs began at the same time.  However, this was not the case at Nebraska.  The Cornhusker Marching Band owes its initial existence to the commander of the university’s military department, Lt. Isaac T. Webster.  Lt Webster felt that drilling to music would improve his battalion of cadets so he made a request to the Board of Regents for the necessary funds.  After a few battles over financing, uniforms and instrument procurement, the Regents agreed to the plan.  Funding secured Samuel B Hohman, the newly appointed band director, found that his “bandsmen” had no musical knowledge or training.  Despite this rather inauspcious begining, the University of Nebraska Military Cadet Band made its firs official performance in April, 1880 at the military departments annual dress parade.

The tenure of Samuel Hohman, a musical instruments salesman from Lincoln, was short-lived as the Conservatory of Music opened in 1880 and he was replaced by Percival Everett who directed the Lincoln City Band. Gradually the band grew in size and quality and became an established fixture of campus life.  During the 1880's most of the band’s performances were at military events, such as drill competition in Omaha in 1881. 

In the 1880's the University did not have an athletic department, so the band’s association with sports began with an informal university baseball team.  Providing entertainment for these games was the band’s only contact with athletics until Roscoe Pound, a former band member and future Dean of the UNL Law School, began to campaign for a football program at the university.  With the help of former students, a team was organized and on Thanksgiving Day, 1890, the first official Nebraska football game was played against a team from the Omaha Y.M.C.A., with the band providing entertainment from the sidelines.

Succession of Directors:  
1879-1880 - Samuel B. Hohman 1911-1917 - Claire Cornell
1880-1881 - Percival Everett 1918-1937 - Billy Quick
1881-1883 - George G. Hitchcock 1938-1973 - Don Lentz
1883-1884 - Adolph Weber 1974-1982 - Jack R. Snider
1884-1898 - David F. Easterday 1983-1993 - Dr. Robert A. Fought
1898-1901 - Earl Wehn 1992-2000 - John H. “Jay” Kloecker
1901-1903 - Mortimer Wilson 2000-Craig Cornish
1903-1911 - August Hagenow 2001-present - Dr. Carolyn A. Barber
Associate and Assistant Directors and Marching Band Directors:
1984-1986 - William L. Ballenger - Marching Band Director
1995-1998 - Dr. Rod M. Chesnutt - Marching Band Director
1998-2002 - Craig S. Cornish - Marching Band Director, Associate Director of Bands
1998-present - Anthony M. Falcone - Marching Band Director, Associate Director of Bands
2002-present - Douglas W. Bush - Assistant Marching Band Director, Assistant Director of Bands

Highlights of Band Program

By 1900 the band was performing at all home football games and by 1913 the athletic department was providing travel funds for the band to accompany the team to important games.  During Billy Quick’s tenure, the band
began performing as a concert ensemble as well as a marching unit.  The band performed concerts on campus culminating in radio broadcasts from 1925 to 1927.

With Don Lentz’s arrival on campus the military department’s control of the Nebraska Band ended in 1938 band remained military in name only as the emphasis of the band’s performances became exciting and entertaining music and marching that featured formations and intricate designs.


The massed band extravaganza know as “Band Day” had its origins at Nebraska.  To fill the stadium area bands were invited to come to games.  This invitation was later changed to include all of Nebraska.  By 1947 the event was so popular that schools were limited to participation once every three years.

The Nebraska band has appeared in all the major bowls at least once.  The 1974 band toured Europe and in 1996-97 the Wind Ensemble performed for the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensemble Conference  in Schladming, Austria.  The Concert Ensembles have performed for National conventions of CBDNA, MENC and Nebraska Conventions of NMEA and NSBA.

43rd Army Band

The 43rd Army Band of the Nebraska National Guard is one of the more colorful units in the State of Nebraska.  Steeped in Nebraska military history, the 43rd Army Band indirectly dates back to 1884, when it was located in Lincoln, NE and known as “Band, Second Regiment.”  In 1902 , during the reorganization of the Nebraska National Guard, it was re-designated “Band, First Regiment,” and in 1916 it was again changed to “Band , Fifth Regiment.” Officially the band traces its history back to 1924 when it was born in Crete, Nebraska, as the “Band Section, Service Company 110th Medical Regiment Band,” and relocated to Lincoln, Nebraska.

After the attack on Pearl Harbor, the band was ordered to federal active duty relocated to Fort Ord California and re-organized as the Div Artillery Band.  After a short period in California the Band was again moved to Camp Rucker Alabama, re-organized with the 138th Infantry Regimental Band as the 35th Division Band, and deployed in 1943 to Europe.  On March 3, 1948 the band was federally recognized, as the “43rd Army Band.”  The mission of the Band is to provide musical entertainment for the morale of soldiers and support the local communities when possible.  The Band has a wide range of musical capabilities from: Ceremonial band, Marching band, Concert band, Dance band, Stage band, Combo , and a variety of small musical groups.  The band is comprised of some 50 “citizen-soldier” musicians from Lincoln and the surrounding area.  Many of the members are students, music teachers, or otherwise associated with the music field in their civilian pursuits.


these bleak days with their many dance performances at the Officer's and Service Clubs, plus supporting the USO organization with performances at the civic auditorium and bond rallies in neighboring towns. During those early years the band continued to grow in numbers and boasted ofhaving musicians, who, prior to serving their country, were members of the nations top symphonies and big bands.

Later in 1943 the band was re-designated the 702°d Army Band and later, in 1944, the 702°d Army Air Forces Band. In 1945 it was assigned to the Continental Air Forces -late to be known as Strategic Air Command), and moved to Andrews Field, Maryland. After the Air Force became a separate services branch in 1947 the band was redesignated the 702nd Air Forces Band stationed at Ardmore Army Air Base, Oklahoma. During this time the band had a busy schedule of concert/dance band At this time there was a 35- member concert band, 13-member dance band, and a marching band which performed for many concerts, dances, ceremonies and parades.

The 43rd Army Band was the only Nebraska Army National Guard unit to see active duty during the Korean conflict in 1950 through 1952. Following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack on the United States, several members of the 43rd Army band were called to active duty in support of the Homeland Security Force.  July 13, 2002 the
43rd Army band was deployed overseas to Tompkin Barracks, Schwetzigen Germany.

As the only musical unit of the Nebraska National Guard, the 43rd Army Band represents the National Guard at a variety of civilian and official military functions throughout the State of Nebraska, parades, concerts, dances, and receptions for military dignitaries.


The USAF Heartland of America Band is an innovative, professional, military music organization dedicated to providing local, national and global audiences with incomparable musical products while directly impacting the overarching Air Force mission. We further endeavor to serve our nation's Air Force by cultivating both patriotism and kinship while bridging cultural barriers utilizing the dynamism of music. Delighting audiences since 1943, this 45-member unit represents more than 325,000 dedicated Air Force professionals who diligently watch over the skies of our country and our national interests, and who stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our allies protecting and defending all those who cherish freedom. Whether presenting multimedia extravaganzas or traditional concerts, the Heartland of America Band dramatically conveys the bravery, sacrifices and commitment of our expeditionary Airmen, encourages veterans in VA hospitals, educates students of all ages on the importance of airpower and the mission of our Air Force, and buoys the spirits of Airmen thousands of miles from home by deploying to their locations with special performances, bringing uplifting messages of support from Americans back in the States.

The Heartland of America Band is an Air Force squadron of professional musicians whose backgrounds include advanced degrees in music performance and whose broad mastery of musical styles range from classic to contemporary, jazz to country, and pop to rock. Its various component ensembles perform more than 450 concerts annually, touring extensively throughout a 680,000 square mile eight state area of responsibility. Known throughout the United States for its outstanding performances and recordings, the Heartland of America Band reaches more than one million people annually through live, radio and television appearances, and has been joined in concert by guest artists such as Frank Mantooth, Kevin Mahogany, Frederick Fennell, Chip Davis, John Denver, Crystal Gayle, Joseph Alessi and Wycliffe Gordon.

The Heartland of America Band is comprised of Night Wing, which specializes in popular and country music, The Noteables jazz ensemble, the Brass in Blue brass ensemble, the Winds of Freedom woodwind quintet and the New Horizons clarinet ensemble. Members from these groups also form a brass quintet and a popular music group entitled Raptor. When joined together, the members of the squadron can form a Concert Band, Ceremonial Band or Marching Band.

The Heartland of America Band has received four Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards and five Air Force Organizational Excellence Awards. In addition, it boasts five Colonel George S. Howard Citations of Musical Excellence from the John Philip Sousa Foundation. The band has the singular distinction of being the only Air Force musical unit deployed throughout the entire area of responsibility in support of troop morale during Operation DESERT SHIELD. In 1995, it was named a “World War II Commemorative Community” for its comprehensive support of activities recognizing the 50th Anniversary of victory in World War II. The band also was honored to perform a major multimedia tribute celebrating the 150th Anniversary of Omaha, Nebraska, and later celebrated the 60th Anniversary of the Air Force by presenting the 2006 Inaugural 55th Wing Tattoo, “The Call of Freedom.” Members of Night Wing, Raptor and Brass in Blue deployed to Southwest Asia in support of Operations IRAQI FREEDOM and ENDURING FREEDOM in April 2006, May 2008 and August 2009, respectively, and recently the unit supported the celebration of Air Force Week in the Heartland.

Directors of the Band: Chief Warrant Officer Anthony Fredric, 1946-1952; Cpt. Bennie Maniscalco, 1952-1955; Cpt. Ernest W. Greer, 1955-1959; Cpt. John B Kirkpatrick, 1959-1960; Maj. Herman G. Vincent, 1960-1964; Cpt. Edward D'Alfonso, 1964-1966; Lt. Col. James Roland, 1966-1973; Lt. Col. James Loren Johnson,1973-1987; Le. Barbara L. Smith, 1987; Lt. Col. Alan L. Bonner, 1987-1991; Lt. Dean L. Zambinski, 1991; Lt. Col. Craig D. Jessop, 1991-1995; Maj. Mark R. Peterson, 1995-1998; Lt. Keith H. Bland, 1998; Maj. A. Phillip Waite, 1998-2007; Maj. Michael Willen, 2007-2009; Capt. Michael Hoerber, 2009-2011 and Lt. Rafael Toro-Quiñones, 2011 to the present.


Nebraska State Bandmasters Association
NSBA Archives