The Music for All Blog
The Music for All Blog


Stephens JamesMusic for All has added a new professional, James P. Stephens, to its Indianapolis staff, as Director of Advocacy and Educational Resources. Stephens joins Music for All having most recently served as a music educator for one of the nation’s most respected scholastic music programs, at Broken Arrow High School in Oklahoma.

Music for All uniquely combines regional and national music-event programming with awareness and advocacy efforts aimed at expanding access to music in schools and communities, including Indianapolis.

The Director of Advocacy and Educational Resources is a new position created to meet key organizational objectives and initiatives. This high-level management position will develop and implement the organization’s existing and new scholastic music-related arts advocacy initiatives. The position will also work with and assist the organization’s educational team as it develops, recommends and crafts organizational initiatives, ensuring the organization’s events and programs support and reflect its high educational standards and commitment.

“As the Music for All vision continues to broaden, Mr. Stephens will be a wonderful and valued asset to the staff. Advocacy is paramount to music education and he will provide needed insight and direction,” stated Gary Markham, Senior Music for All Educational Consultant. “Additionally, he has the background, energy and experience to help facilitate and expand all of MFA’s educational initiatives. The Education Team and I are tremendously excited to work with him for a bright future.”

As an educator, Stephens worked closely and passionately with Music for All at various programs and events and has served on the faculty at the Music for All Summer Symposium.

Prior to joining Music for All, Stephens was the former Associate Director of Bands at Broken Arrow High School where he taught since 2006. Stephens’ teaching responsibilities included three concert bands, music theory and assistant marching band director for the Pride of Broken Arrow. While at Broken Arrow, the marching band was named the Bands of America Grand National Champion twice (in 2011 and 2006), was a seven-time national finalist at the Bands of America Grand National Championships, and was presented with the prestigious Sudler Shield of Excellence by the John Philip Sousa Foundation. The marching band performed by invitation in the 2009 and 2013 Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California.

Under the direction of Stephens, the Broken Arrow Wind Bands have performed multiple times at the Oklahoma Music Educators Association state conventions and most recently in New York City's renowned Carnegie Hall.

Stephens brings both large and small band program experience, prior to his appointment at Broken Arrow, Stephens taught at Jamestown High School (NY), Marion Local High School (OH) and Mad River Middle School (OH). Bands under Stephens' direction have performed in venues across the United States and have consistently received superior ratings and have been awarded numerous honors in concert and marching venues.


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We are proud to announce that we have officially confirmed Veterans Memorial Stadium at Long Beach City College for the 2014 Bands of America Southern California Regional. 
The Regional Championship at Long Beach, CA will be on Saturday, November 8th.
Learn more about the stadium here.
This is the final stadium of the 2014 season to be confirmed! We hope to see you at the Regional Championship at Long Beach!

Chamber Music National FesitvalPhoto used by permission of University of South Carolina School of Music.

The application/audition packet for Music for All’s new Chamber Music National Festival, part of the Music for All National Festival, presented by Yamaha, is now available for download at

The 2015 festival will be March 12-14th in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Music for All is proud to be again expanding the MFA National Festival to provide performance opportunities for students in chamber ensembles. The Chamber Festival is made possible by the commitment and generous lead donor support of Vandoren.

The non-competitive Chamber Music National Festival will offer wind and string chamber ensemble players the opportunity to perform on a national stage and experience professional coaching and instrument-specific master classes.

Michael Skinner, President of DANSR, Inc. (Vandoren) says, “Having students perform in a smaller chamber music size group improves listening skills and the ability to balance and blend. The independence you develop by playing in groups of this size simply makes you a stronger musician. When you consider that some of the greatest works we have were written for chamber groups, then pedagogically it’s clear that adding a chamber music component to Music for All makes sense both educationally and artistically. We are excited to be part of it!”

“Yamaha is very excited to join Music for All and DANSR in the forming of Music for All’s Chamber Music Festival,” says John Wittmann, Director of Artist Relations, Yamaha Corporation of America. “This effort will serve such an important group of students who otherwise might never have gotten an opportunity to grow from this crucial and underserved genre of music. We at Yamaha are honored to be a part of this initiative!”

Ensembles from four to 16 member can apply/audition. The final deadline for chamber ensembles to apply is September 15, 2014. See the application packet for details on this memorable experience and audition requirements.

We hope to see you in Indianapolis in 2015 at the inaugural Chamber Music National Festival!

We are proud to announce that we have officially confirmed BB&T Field at Wake Forest University for the 2014 Bands of America Winston-Salem, NC Regional. 
The Regional Championship at Winston-Salem, NC will be on Saturday, October 11th.
Learn more about the stadium here.
We hope to see you at the Regional Championship at Winston-Salem, NC!

Music for All Welcomes New Board Members

Tuesday, 29 April 2014 19:42 Written by Erin Fortune
New Board Members.png
The  Music for All family is proud to announce that two new members have been elected to the Music for All Board of Directors – Richard Floyd of Austin, Texas and Randall J. Gonzalez of Boone, North Carolina.

“These two individuals bring a wealth of expertise and knowledge in the areas of education and development to the Music for All Board of Directors. The diversity of their experience and geographic locations represents the breadth of the constituency of this national organization,” says Gayl Doster, Chairman of the Music for All Board of Directors. “Each director displays business and fiscal acumen and a love of music and the young people we serve. Each will help us expand opportunities for Music for All as we serve young musicians and their teachers and advocate for the inclusion of music education as part of a complete education for our young people.”

Richard Floyd (pictured above, right)  is presently in his 52nd year of active involvement as a conductor, music educator and administrator. He has enjoyed a distinguished career at virtually every level of wind band performance, from beginning band programs through high school and university wind ensembles as well as adult community bands. Floyd currently holds the title of Texas State Director of Music Emeritus, having served as director of University Interscholastic League music activities for Texas since 1984. He also holds the post of Musical Director and Conductor of the Austin Symphonic Band.

Mr. Floyd is a recognized authority on conducting, the art of wind band rehearsing, concert band repertoire and music advocacy. As such, he has toured extensively throughout the United States, Canada, Australia and Europe as a clinician, adjudicator and conductor including appearances in 44 American states and in 9 other countries. In 2002 he was the recipient of the prestigious A.A. Harding Award presented by the American School Band Directors Association in recognition of his significant and lasting contributions to the school band movement. The Texas Bandmasters Association named him Texas Bandmaster of the Year in 2006 and in 2009 he was presented the Texas Music Educators Association Distinguished Service Award. In March of 2011 he was inducted into Music For All’s Bands of America Hall of Fame and awarded the prestigious Midwest International Clinic Medal of Honor for his distinguished and unique contributions to educational bands and orchestras. In 2013 he was inducted into the National High School Hall of Fame for his extraordinary contributions to high school music programs.

Randall J. Gonzalez (pictured above, left) is a native of Chicago, Illinois and attended the University of Florida and completed a Bachelor’s Degree in American History at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. Randy and his wife Lori moved to Kentucky in 1991 and at the University of Kentucky (UK), Randy held administrative positions in the areas of development, institutional effectiveness, strategic planning, budgeting and student affairs. Randy earned a Master’s Degree in Educational Policy Studies while at UK, and in the fall of 2004 he was named Vice President for Institutional Advancement and Effectiveness at Lexington Community College. From 2007 to 2011 Randy served as Associate Dean for Administration and Finance at the University of Kentucky’s College of Dentistry.

Randy currently resides in Boone, North Carolina with Lori and their son Clay. In the same month that the family moved to North Carolina in the fall of 2011, Clay matriculated to the University of Michigan to study trombone performance and music composition. In the fall of 2012, Randy was named the Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations at Appalachian State University. And through volunteer community and leadership service, Randy has over the last twenty years worked in communities and with organizations to enhance and expand opportunities for children to learn, perform and enjoy music.

Please help us in welcoming Richard and Randy to the Music for All Board of Directors! We are looking forward to their continued involvement.
Glass Bowl copy
We are proud to announce that we have officially confirmed The Glass Bowl at The University of Toledo for the 2014 Bands of America SE Michigan/ NW Ohio Area Regional. 
The Regional Championship at Toledo, OH will be on Saturday, October 4th.
Learn more about the stadium here.
We hope to see you at the Regional Championship at Toledo, OH!
The missing Wylie H.S., TX student has been found safe.
"We are extremely grateful that Stephen Kenneth Colbert was located and reunited with his family today. Our thanks go out to the public and the media in helping spread the word, and to the Indianapolis and Butler University police departments for their role in finding Stephen."

Eric Martin, President and CEO of Music for All
UD Stadium
We are proud to announce that we have officially confirmed Delaware Stadium at The University of Delaware for the 2014 Bands of America Mid-Atlantic Regional. 
The Regional Championship at Newark, DE will be on Saturday, October 25th.
Learn more about the stadium here.
We hope to see you at the Regional Championship at Newark, DE!
We are proud to announce that we have officially confirmed Apogee Stadium at the University of North Texas for the 2014 Texas Dairy Queen® Bands of America Regional Championship at Denton. Our regional championship was one of the first events held at Apogee Stadium in 2012 after it opened and we are very excited to be returning to this great venue!
The Regional Championship at Denton will be on Saturday, October 4th.
Learn more about the stadium here.
We hope to see you at the Denton Regional!
Alfred-WatkinsMr. Alfred L. Watkins has been part of the Music for All family in many capacities - on the advisory committee charged with designing the format of the National Concert Band Festival, as a Summer Symposium clinician and as a fall marching band adjudicator. As Director of Bands at Lassiter High School since 1982, he attended BOA's Weekend with the Experts series and his bands at Lassiter High School have performed at the Music for All National Festival and BOA Regional Championships and Grand National Championships, the latter of which they were named national champion in 1998 and 2002.

The Music for All Foundation is proud to be part of the Alfred L. Watkins Commissioning Project. The commissioned piece is being created to honor Mr. Watkins’ retirement as Director of Bands at Lassiter High School and celebrates the tremendous contributions of Mr. Watkins’ teaching, music making, leadership and passion for excellence.

We hope that you consider joining in the celebration of Mr. Watkins’ passion and life’s work, by honoring his dedication to music education by donating to the Alfred Watkins Commission Fund. The Fund will support the costs for the creation of a commissioned piece of work and will be showcased in May 2014 at the Cobb Wind Symphony Concert in Marietta, GA, where Watkins was a co-founder; as well as the 2015 Music for All National Festival Honor Band of America Concert.

All donations are needed to ensure this project comes to fruition to honor Mr. Watkins’ retirement as Director of Bands at Lassiter High School. The fund needs to raise more than $20,000 in order to reach its goal. Donors will receive donor benefits for their contributions, which include:

•    Donors who give $1,000+ will be listed in the score and in the commemorative program for the premier concert and will receive an autographed photo of the composer and Alfred.
•    Donors who give $500-$999, will be listed in the score and in the commemorative program for the premier concert.
•    Donors who give $499 or below, will be listed in the commemorative program for the premier concert.

To make a charitable gift to the Alfred Watkins Commission Fund, click the button below.

Watch the tribute video to Mr. Watkins:
Learn more about the Music for All Foundation and other specific initiatives and funds here.
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