St. Thomas Bands

Professor Matthew George, chair of the music department, directs the symphonic wind ensemble during dress rehearsal for the annual UST Christmas Concert at Orchestra Hall in downtown Minneapolis on December 8, 2013.

If music is a serious vocation for you, consider joining the highly acclaimed St. Thomas band program. Students in all academic disciplines are welcome. You can participate in a variety of musical groups – from small chamber ensembles to larger symphonic ensembles. And you will have ample opportunities to perform. Our ensembles have played before enthusiastic audiences at the Minnesota Music Educators Association, the College Band Directors National Conference North Central Division and the Music Educators National Conference. They also have toured throughout the United States and abroad, performing in major concert halls of Australia, Mexico, Cuba, Costa Rica, Japan, China, Italy, India and Croatia.

St. Thomas Bands

Dr. Matthew George, conductor, Symphonic Wind Ensemble
Dr. Douglas C. Orzolek, conductor, Symphonic Band

As a member of the Symphonic Wind Ensemble or Band, you will study and perform standard and contemporary band music, transcriptions of other musical genres, and premiere new repertoire commissioned by St. Thomas. Since 1991, the St. Thomas Symphonic Wind Ensemble has commissioned and premiered over 70 new works for band. This music is recorded for commercial distribution and appears on innova, the record label of the American Composers Forum.

Auditions are held during the first week of fall semester in the Brady Educational Center. Students should prepare one or two pieces which show both lyrical and technical playing. Percussionionists should prepare a piece for two of the following instruments: snare drum, mallets, and/or timpani. In addition to your prepared piece(s), there will also be some sight-reading. All interested incoming students should fill out the online form to reserve an audition. Audition forms are accepted from June 1-Sep. 1.  

Chamber Winds: A student/faculty collaborative ensemble

Dr. Matthew George, conductor

Chamber Winds presents a unique opportunity for select students to rehearse and perform chamber music repertoire alongside St. Thomas studio faculty and guest professionals.

Brass Choir

Mr. Christopher Volpe, conductor

The Brass Choir is devoted to the performance of small and large ensemble brass repertoire. The ensemble presents formal and informal concerts on campus each semester.

Instrumental Jazz Ensemble

Mr. Jeffrey Rinear, conductor

Members of this ensemble study and perform jazz in various styles with exposure to improvisation, and present formal and informal concerts on campus each semester.

Chamber Ensembles

The university offers a full complement of woodwind, brass and percussion chamber ensembles coached by St. Thomas studio faculty.