Due to hazardous weather conditions, the Ohio Wesleyan Band Directors' Boot Camp scheduled for Saturday, January 19 has been canceled. The music department has determined that the weather forecast on Saturday is too potentially dangerous to safely invite music educators from across Ohio to drive to Delaware, especially at the end of the day after the snow and ice may have built up to 5+ inches.

Thank you for your interest in this event. We look forward to making music with you again in the future at Ohio Wesleyan!

OWU Band Directors’ Boot Camp
Saturday, January 19, 2019


Ohio Wesleyan University Department of Music Band Directors’ Boot Camp is a day of instrumental music workshops presented by the OWU Applied Music faculty. These fifty-minute sessions provide participants with actionable skills that are proven to improve tone, technique, ensemble blend, articulation and offer tips for effective instrumental practice.

Music Educators can earn up to 7.5 contact hours in Professional Development. A verification form for the teacher’s Local Professional Development Committee will be provided to document the earned professional development contact hours.

OWU Band Directors’ Boot Camp Registration

Although the OWU Band Directors’ Boot Camp is free, space is limited, so register now and certainly before the deadline.


The OWU Band Directors’ Boot Camp runs concurrently with our President’s High School Honor Band Festival on Saturday, January 19, 2019. We have extended the deadline for the festival, so if you want to register your students for the festival, please do so using the President’s High School Honor Band Festival Application Form. Regardless of whether music educators have students participating in the festival or not, they are welcome to participate in the OWU Band Directors’ Boot Camp.

For more information, please contact Nancy Gamso at


This event offers a full day of workshops presented to Wind Band Directors by the music faculty of Ohio Wesleyan University. This event runs concurrently with our President’s High School Honor Band Festival and is offered gratis to all band directors, regardless of your students’ participation in the honor band festival. You are welcome to bring instruments, if you wish to play in the workshops.

Time Session Instructor
9 a.m. Check-In, Sanborn Hall n/a
9:30-10:20 a.m. “Slow is Fast and Fast is Gliding: Three Efficient Ways For Better (and Faster) Slide Technique”
Are you wanting to play a Henry Fillmore or Karl King march but don’t have a strong trombone section to handle those exciting yet fast sixteenth notes? This session will give you three ways your trombonists can tackle any fast piece of music by doing less work for a faster slide movement.
Jeremy Smith
OWU Instructor of Trombone
“Front Row Fluting”
They sit right in front of you, they are the highest sounding (and seemingly loudest) tones you hear from your podium. So what to do? In this session we’ll learn some tuning and balance tricks to allow the flute section to add that shimmering touch on the wind band sound.
Nancy Gamso
OWU Professor of Music
10:30-11:20 a.m. “Bassoonists in band, what to do next!”
The bassoon is the instrument that doubles both the low brass and the upper woodwinds, in addition to having a unique reed and key system different from any other instrument. In this seminar we will discuss tips and tricks on how to have students achieve a higher degree of success when dealing with technical passages. The seminar will include seven simple things that every band director should keep in mind when dealing with bassoonists, as well as providing fundamental knowledge about bassoon embouchure, articulations, and how to acquire good reeds.
Ian Bell
OWU Instructor of Bassoon
“Rehearsal Techniques: To Listen or Not to Listen...That Is the Question!”
Why did Frederick Fennell say that if he could have only one word on his band room wall, it would be “LISTEN” (written in 8 foot letters)? Why did Elizabeth Green once say to John Whitwell, “You band directors are great at teaching the lips and fingers, but when will you teach the brain?” This session will share insights from famous conductors and feature rehearsal activities to help students take responsibility for their sound through focused listening and adaptive performance.
Richard Edwards
OWU Professor of Music
1-2 p.m. “The Trumpet Can Sound with Confidence”
The symptomatic issues of an insecure brass performer are observed as intonation, poor tone quality, inconsistent articulations, diminished range, and poor breath support. These issues can be effectively addressed with simple adjustments to improve the overall performance of your ensemble. This session will provide years of insight and conversational resources to improve your students’ performance confidence.
Larry Griffin
OWU Professor of Music and Music Department Chairman
1:30-2:20 p.m. “Lions, Tigers and Oboes, Oh My!”
There is nothing better or worse than the sound of the oboe! Discover tips that will instantly turn your roaring oboes into purring kittens! Karen Pfeifer has placed more oboists in All-State and National Ensembles than any teacher in the state. Find out how you can help your oboists follow the road to the top!
Karen Pfeifer
OWU Instructor of Oboe
“Building From the Bottom Up: Foundations for a Stellar Low Brass Sound”
Sitting at the back, the tuba and euphonium section may seem like a muddled and groggy bunch of youngsters. But believe me they’re much more than a bunch of whole notes and rest counters. I’d like to present some simple breathing and playing concepts to improve the tone, articulation, and technique to take your low brass section from the bottom of the band to the top!
Brandon Christie
OWU Instructor of Tuba
2:30-3:20 p.m. “A Musical Percussion Section”
The students have the parts and can more or less play what is on the page. Now what? We will learn how to listen to and balance your percussion section with the rest of your ensemble using examples from common wind band literature and discuss common and easy instructions you can give to your students to get them to stop banging and start listening.
Renee Keller
OWU Instructor or Percussion
“The Clarinet and Sax Sections: Tone and Articulation”
The single reeds are different beasts—one cylindrical and wood, the other conical and brass. Tone and articulation on the clarinets and the saxes require different techniques, so let’s dig in and discover how you can help them give your band that rich and articulate woodwind core.
Nancy Gamso
OWU Professor of Music

For more information, please contact Nancy Gamso at