This year, the High Plains Band and Choir Festival Feb. 3-4 will include students from 28 school districts in Nebraska, Wyoming, and South Dakota.
The final concert will be 5 p.m. Feb. 4 in the Memorial Hall Auditorium. It will also be available via live streaming.
The honor band will be directed by Dr. Sidney Shuler, the festival band by Dr. Michael Stephens, the honor choir by Dr. Mark Simmons, and and the women's choir by Dr. Una Taylor.
Simmons is Director of Choral Activities and Associate Professor of Music at the University of Tennessee at Martin, a position he has held since 2004.
In his current position, Simmons conducts the campus-wide University Singers as well as the auditioned touring choir, the New Pacer Singers. NPS has performed in 14 states over the past 8 years and this last summer toured the south island of New Zealand on a concert tour.
He also teaches advanced conducting, secondary methods, and aural skills. He holds degrees in music education and conducting from Ithaca College, the Eastman School of Music, and Arizona State University.
Previously, he served on the faculties of colleges in Iowa, Indiana, New York and Arizona. Prior to these appointments, he was the Director of Music at St. Mary’s School in Medford, Ore. where he taught vocal and instrumental music at the middle school and high school levels.
—CSC Information Services