Benjamin Dean Taylor - Composer-in-Residence

Benjamin Dean Taylor - Composer-in-Residence

 Dr. Matthew Westgate, Director of Wind Studies, UMASS Amherst

Dr. Matthew Westgate, Director of Wind Studies, UMASS Amherst

 Dr. Lauren Reynolds, Director of Concert Bands, University of Delaware

Dr. Lauren Reynolds, Director of Concert Bands, University of Delaware

 Dr. Timothy T. Anderson, Director of the UMASS Minuteman Marching Band

Dr. Timothy T. Anderson, Director of the UMASS Minuteman Marching Band

THE 34th annual honor Band/CLINIC

february 9, 2019


Band Directors or Private Lesson teachers can register their students below. All applications are due by midnight on December 7, 2018. We will not mail registration forms this year.

Teacher recommendation forms are sufficient for entry into all the bands. Auditions videos are not required.


Questions? Email Jared Bloch (



We are putting together a schedule for high school and middle school conductors that includes sessions taught by UMass faculty members, a lunch with music education students and faculty, a session with Benjamin Taylor about repertoire and commissioning, and a private UMass Wind Ensemble performance.  At the end of the day, teachers can celebrate with their students at the 7:00pm evening concert. *If you are interested, please register below. This is FREE for teachers.



The Honor Band schedule for students will feature masterclasses with UMass faculty, a concert with the UMass Wind Ensemble, and a forum to interact with UMass music students. Lunch and dinner will be provided! Registration will begin at 8:00am and rehearsals will begin at 8:30am. Concert performance will be at 7:00pm. The cost is $40 per student, which covers everything, including lunch and dinner. 


In the event that we would have to postpone Honor Band due to weather, the top of this website page would have information about the changes.

2019 GUEST COMPOSER: Benjamin Dean Taylor

The music of Benjamin Dean Taylor (born 1983), has been described as “elegant and energetic” (Kenneth Thompson) and “powerful and direct with delightful surprises in each work.” (Marilyn Shrude) Having grown up as a performer in jazz, rock, ska, country, and concert bands as well as in choirs and orchestras, Taylor is driven to write music that highlights the strengths of each performing ensemble. His catalog of more than 100 works covers a large range of styles and genres including music written for orchestra, wind band, opera, choir, jazz big band, gamelan, chamber ensembles, and soloists with live electronics. Further, Taylor has written music for multimedia collaborations with dancers, filmmakers, poets, and visual artists.

Taylor has received commissions from ensembles including the Calidore String QuartetOmaha SymphonySolaire Saxophone QuartetNew World Youth Symphony, and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra Civic Wind Symphony. His music has been performed by ensembles around the world including the Cleveland Chamber SymphonyAmerican Composers OrchestraKenari QuartetL’ensemble ItineraireNurnberg Hochschulorchester and has been championed by soloists Keith KirchoffZach Herchen, and Scotty Stepp. As a sought-after composer for wind band, Taylor has been commissioned by over 75 band directors of players at all educational levels.

Recently named a recipient of his third commission from the Barlow Endowment, Taylor’s prizes and honors include Winner in the 2013 Ticheli Composition Contest, a grant from the Indiana Arts Council (2015), Dean’s Prize in Composition from Indiana University (2013), BMI Student Composers Award (2011), Winner in the American Composers Orchestra Underwood New Music Readings (2012), and an ASCAP Young Jazz Composer Award (2011). His music has received performances at festivals including the College Band Directors National Association Conference, Society of Electroacoustic Music in the United States National Conference, Society of Composers National Conference, International Society of Bassists Conference, International Double Reed Society Conference, Scandinavian Saxophone Festival, and international jazz festivals in Edinburgh, Marlborough and Birmingham. His compositions have been featured on the radio and television including NPR’s “Says You.”

Benjamin Taylor completed a doctorate degree from Indiana University and holds degrees from Bowling Green State University (MM) and Brigham Young University (BA). His principal teachers have included David DzubayDon FreundClaude BakerJeffrey HassMarilyn Shrude, Elaine LilliosChristian AsplundNeil Thornock, and Steven Ricks. When not composing, Taylor can be found playing in his Dixieland jazz band, leading community bucket drumming groups, hiking, running, cooking, and camping with his family.

More info can be found here:



TAYLOR HONOR BAND - Benjamin Taylor and Dr. Matthew Westgate, conductors

MAROON WINDS - Dr. Lauren Reynolds, conductor

MINUTEMAN WINDS - Dr. Timothy T. Anderson, conductor