Senior High Honor Band Festival

Nominations are currently CLOSED

On Friday, November 3rd and Saturday, November 4th, the University of Minnesota Duluth, Department of Music is pleased to be hosting its Sixty-Fifth Annual Senior High Honor Band Festival. As always, our hope is to provide you and your students with the best experience possible. This year there will be two bands, the Gold Band and the Maroon Band. We will keep membership for the Gold Band to around 65-70 members.




This year I (Mark Whitlock) will conduct the Gold Band.  As always, I am extremely anxious to work with your talented students. Membership in this band should be limited to only the best musicians in the state.  In most cases, students should have been members of one of the All-State bands, be in the first section of your band and/or have received a "1" rating at solo and ensemble contest. If you have a student that you feel is truly outstanding please submit their name. Be sure to document the student's accomplishments. Students not selected for this band will automatically be considered for the Maroon Band.


Conductor for this band will be announced at the end of the summer.

HOW TO NOMINATE ON–LINE – Nominations are currently CLOSED

This year we are requesting that nominations for the Senior High Honor Band be done on-line at our UMD Bands web site. Please, if at all possible try to use this method of submitting nominations. We would appreciate this very much!

Note for Percussionists:

Please be specific about percussionist's strengths (timpany, mallets, snare, etc.) and also indicate whether the baritone players read bass clef or treble clef.

Please nominate only students who have expressed an interest in participating and who can guarantee they will attend if selected. We would like to make this event as musical and memorable as possible, so a commitment is essential.

Dates to keep in mind:

Entry Deadline: TBD

Results Notification: TBD

HOUSING (Please Read and Notice Changes)

Arrangements are the same this year. We have made arrangements with the Edgewater Hotel on London Rd. in Duluth. For those of you who need housing for this event we have reserved a block of rooms. The Edgewater Hotel rates for the weekend will be $84.99 per room per night, plus tax. The hotel offers a la carte breakfast. Students will need to pay extra for the water-park wrist bands.

The discounted rates are good for up to 4 students per room. You may pay for your room upon arrival. When you call please mention that you are making reservations for the UMD Honor Band Festival. For more information you may call Kim Chick at 218-461-9458 or email her at [email protected] or look at their web site at: or call the Edgewater Resort & Waterpark 2400 London Road Duluth, MN 55812 218-728-3601 toll free 800-777-7925. Please make your reservations by October 25 to make sure you have a room for your students.

Our Honor Band Philosophy

The purpose of this festival is to give the best students in your program a chance to participate in an ensemble that not only performs well but provides the students an opportunity to learn more about music and hopefully inspire them to become more excited about music. While we want bands that play well at the concert, we are more concerned about what your students learn while they are here at UMD. The level of performance does not always reflect what has been learned. Having said that, I would like you to consider the following when you are nominating your students.

  1. Nominate only those who you know have achieved a level of skill beyond beginner level.
  2. Please nominate students who have good attitudes and want to learn.
  3. Please nominate students who want to work hard.
  4. Nominate those who will appreciate the opportunity you/we are providing them and want to take there experiences back home to help improve your program.

The Gold Band

Membership in this ensemble should be limited to only the best musicians in the state. In most cases, students should have been members of one of the All-State ensembles, be in the first section of your band and/or have received a "1" rating at solo and ensemble contest. If you have a student that you feel is truly outstanding you may submit their name. Be sure to document the student’s accomplishments. Students not selected for this band will automatically be considered for the Maroon Band.

The Maroon Band

I am asking that you recommend other outstanding students from your band program for this ensemble. Your strongest juniors and seniors, other students who have attended honor bands or students who are serious musicians in your program should be considered.

The UMD Faculty will also be on hand to give clinics and performances throughout the weekend. A more complete biography is available in the honor band information packet. I am looking forward to having the chance to meet your fine students. All of us at UMD sincerely hope that you can find the time to become involved with this special festival.


If you have questions or problems nominating your students, please email: [email protected]

For daily up-dates and further information on our Senior High School Honor Band Festival visit us HERE

Payment Information:

There will be a $25.00 charge per student for participation in the UMD Senior High Honor Band Festival.
Payment will be due on the day of registration. One check for full payment should be made payable to UMD Bands.

For more information, contact:

Mark Whitlock, Director of Bands
Office: 218.726.6124
Fax: 218.726.8210
[email protected]
212 Humanities Building
1201 Ordean Court
Duluth, MN 55812