Middle School Honors Band Festival

uwm middle school honors band festival

November 17–19, 2017

Questions: ms-honors-band@uwm.edu or (414) 229-5641

The UWM Middle School Honor Band Festival is one of the longest standing events of its kind. Our festival provides the region’s most motivated and accomplished middle school instrumentalists an opportunity to work with each other and with regionally and nationally recognized wind band conductors. In addition, students interact with UWM performance staff, and they hear performances by UWM ensembles.

Director Nominations

October 2–16, 2017
Band Directors will nominate their best students to be eligible for the UWM Middle School Honors Band Festival. Students will receive notice of their acceptance to the festival or their “wait-list” designation by email on or around October 25. 

If you have yet to receive information in the mail, you may download the Director’s Packet in advance.

Nomination Form

Student Pre-Registration

October 25–November 10
Students who are nominated by their Band Director and selected for acceptance to the festival will be emailed on or around October 25 and should complete the registration by following the link in their acceptance email.

The registration fee is $95.00 per student which includes all instruction, rehearsal spaces, and music. It also includes admission to the final concert for the students’ family and other supporters. (There is no separate charge for concert tickets in 2017.) An optional purchase of a CD recording ($15.00 each) of the final festival performances is also available.

If computer access is limited, please contact the Box Office at (414) 229-4308 for assistance. 

Festival Schedule

Participating students must be able to commit to the full duration of all activities listed below. Activities labeled with an asterisk(*) are optional portions of the schedule.

Detailed Schedule

Friday, November 17

4:00-5:00pm On-site Check-In: UWM Union, 2200 E. Kenwood Blvd – Be sure to have a snack before you check-in
5:15pm Seating of the ensembles (UWM Union)
5:30-7:30pm Rehearsal segment #1 (UWM Union) – Periodic breaks at the conductors’ discretion
*8:15-9:00pm UWM Symphony Band concert (Zelazo Center) – Free and open to middle school festival participants and band directors

Saturday, November 18

8:00-11:00am  Rehearsals resume (UWM Union) – Periodic breaks at the conductors’ discretion
11:00am-12:15pm Lunch break – Bring a bag lunch, or limited UWM Union food court options available
12:15-1:00pm UWM Jazz Ensemble concert (UWM Union – Wisconsin Room)
1:00-5:00pm Rehearsals and sectionals (UWM Union) – Periodic breaks at the conductors’ discretion
*5:00-7:00pm Dinner Break
*7:00-8:30pm UWM Wind Ensemble & Milwaukee Music Festival High School Honor Band concert (Zelazo Center) – Free and open to middle school festival participants and band directors

Sunday, November 19

8:30-11:30am Staggered Rehearsals (UWM Union) – Periodic breaks at the conductors’ discretion
1:00-4:00pm Final Concert performances
1:00pm “Ohio” Honor Band (Jeff North, retired band director from Logan, OH)
2:00pm “Illinois” Honor Band (Glen Schneider, band director at Metea Valley (IL) High School)
3:00pm  “Wisconsin” Honor Band (Cheryl Miracle, band director in the Franklin (WI) Public Schools)

Students will receive a more detailed schedule for Sunday at the festival. Students are dismissed from the festival immediately following their final concert performance.

Final Concert Information

  • All performances will take place Sunday, November 19, in the Helene Zelazo Center for the Performing Arts, 2419 E Kenwood Blvd.
  • All patrons should wait in the concert waiting area, Zelazo Center ROOM 280 prior to each concert performance.
  • Enter the Zelazo Center on the WEST side (Prospect Ave). Special needs access on the South side of the building via the small parking lot). The Waiting Area will be open and available for concert patrons beginning at noon.
  • Please meet your student outside of the building immediately following the performance. Students are dismissed from Festival activities upon completing their concert performance.
  • Each Middle School honor band will perform its own separate concert. Because of this, the concert hall will need to be cleared after each middle school performance. Patrons who are attending multiple performances should leave the concert hall, and re-enter with the other patrons waiting for the next performance.
  • Band Directors are welcomed to attend all of the Sunday final concerts – no ticket is necessary.

For the UWM Honor Band concert, please wear what you would wear for your own school band concerts. Casual (appropriate for school) clothing is appropriate for festival rehearsals and other activities.

  • Gentlemen: Buttoned dress shirt with a tie, (suit coat or sports coat optional), black dress or dark chino-style pants, dark (black) socks, black dress shoes (no sneakers or athletic shoes).
  • Ladies: Long-sleeved tops with modest necklines and skirts/dresses that are “tea-length” or to the floor (no hem-lines above the calf), dark dress shoes and socks/hosiery. Dress pants/pant-suits are acceptable.


Special Instrumental Needs

  • Flute Students: Should bring a piccolo if you have access to one and want to be considered for piccolo parts. Piccolo assignments will be made under the leadership of the guest conductor/clinician.
  • Brass Students: Trumpet and trombone students should bring straight mutes. Other mutes may be requested during the course of the weekend.
  • Percussion Students: Are required to bring a pair of general-purpose snare sticks, keyboard mallets, and timpani mallets.


There are limited Student Union dining facilities that will be open during the festival, but are open to the public. Other restaurants are adjacent to campus, within a four-block walk. Participants will not be accompanied by Festival staff to/from meals. Students and parents are free to make any arrangements necessary for meals.



Office staff is available at (414) 229-5641 during the festival schedule, should any emergency arise. UWM Police Non-Emergency line is (414) 229-4627.


You are encouraged to use metered street parking, the university parking structures, or other university lots.  Additional information is available at uwm.edu/parking. Participants and patrons are responsible for following all posted parking regulations. Students are responsible for arranging prompt pick-up and drop-off plans with their parents and/or traveling party.