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Band/Choir/OrchestraFest

Band/Choir/OrchestraFest

March 24, 2020

This festival provides non-competitive performance experiences for middle and high school bands, choirs and orchestras. In addition to extensive feedback, ensembles receive a clinic following their performance. Evaluators provide constructive and practical suggestions to help each ensemble improve its performance, as well as comments for directors. Each ensemble is provided with audio copies of their performance and the judges’ commentary, as well as a commemorative certificate.
 
Entries are limited to the first 16 ensembles that submit the application and entry fee. Applications received once all slots have been filled will be put on a waiting list, numbered in the order received. The entry fee of $350.00 (check or school purchase order) is non-refundable and must be received in order to reserve a performance time slot.
 
Ensembles are scheduled in timed intervals beginning at 8:30 a.m. and ending with the final performance at 4:30 p.m. After their performance, each ensemble works with a clinician for the remainder of the slotted time.
 
Each ensemble should plan to arrive an hour before its scheduled performance time, allowing for 30 minutes to unload and 30 minutes to warm up or rehearse. Ensembles are invited to arrive early or stay late to hear other performances. Parents and guests are also welcome to attend.
 

BandFest 

Each band has a 50-minute block of time for their performance and evaluation.
 
The entry fee of $350.00 (check, school purchase order or credit card) is non-refundable and must be received in order to reserve a performance time slot.
 
Once your reservation is confirmed, please bring four original copies of the score for each piece you plan on performing. Complete information regarding the logistics for the day will be sent following the registration deadline.
Register_Now_4_Updated_Blue
 

ChoralFest

Each choir has a 30-minute block of time for their performance and evaluation.
 
The entry fee of $225.00 (check, school purchase order or credit card) is non-refundable and must be received in order to reserve a performance time slot.
 
Once your reservation is confirmed, please arrange to bring four original copies of the score for each piece you plan on performing. Complete information regarding the logistics for the day will be sent following the registration deadline.
Register_Now_4_Updated_Blue
 

OrchestraFest

Each orchestra has a 30-minute block of time for their performance and evaluation.
 
The entry fee of $225.00 (check, school purchase order or credit card) is non-refundable and must be received in order to reserve a performance time slot.

Once your reservation is confirmed, please arrange to bring four original copies of the score for each piece you plan on performing. Complete information regarding the logistics for the day will be sent following the registration deadline.
Register_Now_4_Updated_Blue

Clinicians

BandFest:

Alex Kaminsky

Alexander Kaminsky recently joined the faculty at VanderCook after an extended tenure at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL. In addition to being active as an adjudicator, Kaminsky is in demand as a guest conductor and clinician throughout the U.S. He has presented his clinic, “How Can I Get My Band to Sound Like That,” at the school district and post-secondary level, including the 2015 Music Education Lecture Series sponsored by the School of Music at Loyola University, and most recently as the headline clinician for the 2016 Colorado Bandmasters Association Convention. Bands under his direction consistently earn Superior ratings at all levels of evaluation. Kaminsky has earned Superior ratings at the State Concert Band Assessment (FL) for an unprecedented 22 consecutive years. For 12 of those years, including the last 10 consecutive years, Kaminsky has had two bands earn Superior ratings at State. Additionally, he is the only director in the history of the Florida Bandmasters Association to have had three concert bands earn straight Superior ratings at State, and he has achieved this twice (2009 and 2018).
 

Stacey Larson Dolan

Stacey Larson Dolan (MMEd ‘98) is Dean of Undergraduate Studies and Associate Professor of Music at VanderCook, where she teaches music education courses, conducting courses and band at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Dolan enjoyed success teaching elementary, middle and high school music before joining the faculty at VanderCook in 2004. She earned her bachelor’s degree in music education from Millikin University and her master’s from VanderCook. Dolan was on the design and teaching staff for the National Champion Lake Park Marching Band for 12 years and was the creative director and conductor of the Bensenville Young Musicians Mentor Band from 1995 to 2007. She has conducted honor bands and presented workshops at MEAs and festivals in China and throughout the United States. She has taught tens of thousands of middle school and high school students through her work as a clinician, adjudicator and guest conductor. Her professional affiliations include NAfME, Phi Beta Mu, NBA and CBDNA.

 

ChoralFest:

Dr. Robert L. Sinclair

Dean of Graduate Studies Dr. Robert L. Sinclair has served VanderCook as Director of Choral Activities since 2001. His educational background includes three years at Luther College, where he sang in the Nordic Choir under the direction of Weston Noble. After transferring to Sam Houston State University, he completed his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Music degrees with B.R. Henson. In December of 2000, Dr. Sinclair completed a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction (music education) at the University of Missouri-Columbia, where he worked with Drs. David Rayl and Wendy Sims. Dr. Sinclair has 10 years of public school teaching experience and has presented sessions to the Music Educators Associations of Illinois, Ohio, Missouri and Texas, the Illinois Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), as well as the Southwestern and Southern Divisions of ACDA. He continues to work as an active choral clinician and adjudicator for junior high and high school students from across the nation and abroad, including honor choirs in Australia, the Bahamas, Canada, and Japan in addition to all-state choirs in Illinois and Wisconsin. Dr. Sinclair is an active member of ACDA, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Music Fraternity, Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honors Fraternity, and the National Association for Music Education.
 

Dr. Christopher J. Nakielski

Dr. Christopher Nakielski (MMEd '09) is incredibly excited to be the next Director of Choral Activities at Cornell College (Mount Vernon, IA) in the fall of 2020. “Dr. N” is currently an assistant clinical professor of voice, choir and choral music education at Washington State University. Immediately prior to this post, Nakielski recently earned his DMA in choral conducting and pedagogy under the tutelage of Drs. Timothy Stalter and David Puderbaugh. Prior to his enrolling at The University of Iowa, Nakielski received his bachelor's degree from Ripon College in 2006 in addition to his MMEd from VanderCook. After completing his degree at VanderCook, he directed choirs at college-preparatory school Loyola Academy in Wilmette for six years. While at Loyola, Nakielski toured nationally and internationally, including Italy, Poland and the Czech Republic. In 2013, his Honors Chamber Singers were invited to participate in Chicago radio station WFMT’s live broadcast of “Introductions,” a weekly program that features the Chicago area’s finest pre-college classical musicians. Later that academic year, Nakielski was awarded Teacher of the Year at Loyola Academy, the first performing-arts teacher to receive the award in the school’s 108-year history. As a tenor soloist, Nakielski has sung with several professional choral ensembles in Chicago, including the Chicago Choral Artists and the New Classic Singers, in addition to serving as a tenor section leader for Queen of All Saints Basilica and St. Peter’s in the Loop. As a rock musician (keyboards and backup vocals), he toured for five years with singer-songwriter Ben Ripani, playing at prestigious festivals and stages across the country. In 2010, the band’s music was featured in 2010's Season Two finale of the 90210 reboot on cable television. Nakielski is also interested in 20th-century Polish choral music, having recently finished his dissertation involving research on the first female Polish choral conductor, Irena Pfeiffer (1912–1986).
 

OrchestraFest:

Dr. John-Rine Zabanal

As an adjunct assistant professor at Florida State University, Dr. John-Rine Zabanal worked with both undergraduate and graduate string students, making him a great resource for all VanderCook students. He has additional experience with music technology, psychology of music, and research in music.
   
Prior to his work at FSU, Dr. Zabanal was the Director of Orchestras at Riverbend High and Ni River Middle Schools in Virginia, where his students consistently earned Superior Ratings at VBODA District Orchestra Assessment.
   
Beyond the classroom, Dr. Zabanal has involved himself with a number of programs that provide elementary-to-high school aged students the opportunity to build positive musical foundations. These include the FSU Strings Orchestra Camp, Rappahannock Summer Music Camp, Tallahassee Youth Orchestra and the Rappahannock Youth Orchestra.
   
Dr. Zabanal is a strong advocate of music education, and has held memberships with organizations such as the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) and the American String Teacher Association (ASTA). Currently, Dr. Zabanal serves as the Vice President of the FSU chapter of ASTA and is the Media Specialist and Editor for the Florida chapter. He holds a Ph.D. in Music Education and a master's degree in music education from FSU, and a bachelor's degree in music education from The Ohio State University.
Date: March 24, 2020

Registration Deadline:
March 13, 2020

BandFest Registration
 
ChoirFest Registration
 
OrchestraFest Registration

If you're unable to come to Band/
Choir/OrchestraFest this year, please consider
bringing your ensemble to VanderCook for a clinic with one of our esteemed faculty!
 
For any questions, please contact

Patrick Benson
Director of Continuing Education & Outreach
pbenson@vandercook.edu
312.788.1139


 
 

VanderCook College of Music

3140 South Federal Street
Chicago, IL 60616-3731
(312) 225-6288

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