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Chicagoland Marching Band Leadership Academy

Chicagoland Marching Band Leadership Academy

July 2020 (date TBD)

Formerly known as 7 Steps to a Better Band, the Chicagoland Marching Band Leadership Academy (MBLA) is a single-day event designed to prepare directors and their student leaders for a successful school year and marching band season. Directors and their students will have an opportunity to set goals for their school, break out into sectional leadership workshops, prepare music in sections, share their goals with all participants and prepare and perform a music selection as one large ensemble. 

Leadership is more than a title - it's a way of life. This year's guest clinician Dr. Charles Menghini, President Emeritus of VanderCook, will provide a practical, step-by-step approach to developing the necessary skills and action steps for your high school leadership team. His 2019 keynote presentation "What is Leadership and What Can You Do?" will set the tone for a full day of leadership growth, team-building and music performance.

All students will receive a MBLA shirt and lunch, and will depart feeling motivated and inspired for the coming school year!

Instructor: Dr. Charles T. Menghini

Dr. Charles MenghiniDr. Charles T. Menghini is President Emeritus of VanderCook College of Music. Dr. Menghini served as President and Director of Bands from August of 2004 through May of 2017, and prior to that time served as Dean of Undergraduate Studies and Director of Bands. He began his teaching at VanderCook College in 1994 and in addition to being Director of Bands he taught instrumental conducting, organization and administration, curriculum and supervision, brass methods and rehearsal techniques classes.

Dr. Menghini brought 18 years of successful high school band experience in Missouri and Kansas with his appointment to VanderCook. Bands under his direction received consistent Division I ratings in regional, state and national music festivals, performed at various state music educator conventions and performed in the Tournament of Roses Parade, Orange Bowl Parade, Bands of America International Festival and the XV Olympic Winter Games in Calgary, Canada.

Originally from Iron Mountain, MI, Dr. Menghini attended Northern Michigan University and the University of Missouri-Columbia where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in music education. He also holds a master's degree in educational administration and a Doctorate of Arts in wind conducting from the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music. Dr. Menghini recognizes Dr. Tim Lautzenheiser, Gary Green and Gary Hill as being the most influential teachers in his growth and development.

Dr. Menghini is co-author of the Essential Elements Band Method, published by the Hal Leonard Corporation. He also writes for numerous professional journals and magazines including InTune Monthly, School Band and Orchestra, and The Instrumentalist, where he serves as a member of the Board of Advisors.

Dr. Menghini frequently serves as a clinician and adjudicator throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia and New Zealand, and has actively worked with over 350 school and community ensembles from 20 states as well as Canada, Japan, Southeast Asia and Australia. He has conducted all-state ensembles in Wisconsin, North Dakota, Georgia, South Carolina, Nebraska, New York, Virginia and Minnesota, and has presented numerous clinics at the Midwest Clinic in Chicago and various state and regional music education in-services throughout the world.
Date: July 25, 2019

Registration Deadline:
July 12, 2019

Attendance Fee: $40.00 per student (includes lunch; directors and instructors are free)

Online Registration

* Spots fill up quickly for the day and space is limited - early registration recommended!

* Fees cannot be refunded once payment has been accepted.
Individual Student Registration
* If you have individual students that would like to attend please have them complete this form
For any questions, please contact:

Patrick Benson
Director of Continuing Education & Outreach

Event Schedule:

8:15 - 8:45 a.m.
Arrival & check-in

9:00 - 9:10 a.m.
Welcome & Introductions

9:10 - 10:30 a.m.
What is Leadership and What Can You Do? with Dr. Menghini

10:45 a.m.
Students: How to Lead A Sectional
Directors: Session with Dr. Menghini

11:45 a.m.
Lunch & Goal-Setting Session

1:30 p.m.
Goal Sharing

2:00 p.m.
Sectional Rehearsals

3:45 p.m.

4:00 p.m.


VanderCook College of Music

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

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