Department of Music

Wind Symphony

Dr. Karen Gustafson, Director

The UAF Wind Symphony has a long tradition of performance on campus and on tour. In past years, the ensemble has performed under composer-conductor Karel Husa, and has played at the Northwest MENC Conference. Additionally, the group has performed throughout the state of Alaska. During the tenure of conductor James Bicigo, the Wind Symphony began an active outreach to area public schools - performing concerts, participating in rehearsal clinics, and holding an annual "instrument petting zoo." The students performing in the Wind Symphony will learn a wide variety of band literature designed to explore many genres and types of music from traditional wind band literature to contemporary compositions. Literature performed recently includes "Profanation" by Bernstein, "Symphonic Song"s by Bennett, "Hammersmith" by Holst, "Godzilla Eats Las Vegas!" by Whitacre, "Symphony #3" by Giannini, "Original Suite for Band" by Jacob, "Howl" by UAF composer James Bicigo, and "Variations on America" by Ives.

In the fall of 2007, Dr. Karen Gustafson was appointed conductor of the UAF Wind Symphony. Dr. Gustafson continues the dedication to music education by travelling with Wind Symphony to local schools offering educational programs and touring in Alaska on a yearly basis. The UAF Wind Symphony has also began the recording process of a CD of Alaskan music by Alaskan composers for young bands. This CD will offer Alaskan educators a resource to discover new Alaskan music for band. All UAF students are welcome to audition for the Wind Symphony. Contact Dr. Karen Gustafson, 474-5004 or kagustafson2@alaska.edu for further information.