The Music for All Blog
The Music for All Blog


As a brass player myself, I love playing with other brass players in small ensembles. It is in those small ensembles where you are able to fully expereince the versatility of brass instruments. This is exactly why I am very excited for the Atlantic Brass Quintet’s (ABQ) performance at the Music for All Summer Symposium, presented by Yamaha in June. I’ve been listening to their recordings all morning and can’t wait to hear them fill up Emens Auditorium with some outstanding music!

The Atlantic Brass Quintet will be performing Tuesday evening (June 24) at the Symposium. The ABQ is a group of five virtuosic musicians from across the country who have played together for many years. From Brazil to Carnegie Hall to the White House, the Quintet has performed across the globe since its founding in 1985. The group performs a wide variety of music, from Monteverdi to Stravinsky and jazz standards to brass street music. Listen below to their most recent album, “Crossover,” just released this year:


The Atlantic Brass Quintet began in 1985 in Boston as a competition brass quintet, winning awards across the world for their performances. Current tuba player John Manning was a founding member of the Quintet. Since 1985, the group has been comprised of some of the country’s foremost brass players. Currently the group includes founding member John Manning (tuba), Tim Albright (trombone), Seth Orgel (horn), Andrew Sorg (trumpet) and Tom Bergeron (trumpet).

The Quintet has been the resident brass quintet of Boston University, the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, and the Boston Conservatory. Over the past 30 years of music making, the group has become known for their emphasis on music from across the world. The regularly perform ethnic music from the streets of Brazil, Cuba, the Balkans, and New Orleans. In 2012, the Atlantic Brass Quintet partnered with kerPlunk Dance to present a unique dance and brass piece entitled “Music in Motion.” You can watch selections of the piece in the video below:


I think The Boston Globe put it best of the Atlantic Brass Quintet: “They kick butt.” I'm looking forward most to hearing one of my favorite pieces, Franz Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2, which also happens to be an audience favorite for the group. For anyone thinking about attending the Symposium, don’t miss the opportunity to see the Atlantic Brass Quintet live! I certainly can’t wait to see what the group comes up with for their performance at the Summer Symposium!

Click here to learn more and to register for the Music for All Summer Symposium, presented by Yamaha, held June 23-28, 2014 at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana.

Published in Stories

Check out the photos from Summer Symposium Day 4! (Day 6 for our awesome Leadership students!)


If the photo stream above is not viewable for you, try this link:

Published in Stories

Check out the photos from Summer Symposium Day 3! (Day 5 for our awesome Leadership students!)


If the photo stream above is not viewable for you, try this link:

Published in Stories

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If I had to pick one adjective to describe the Wednesday concert in the Summer Symposium evening concert series, it would be…


We welcomed to the stage The PROJECT Trio, a “passionate, high energy chamber music ensemble” from Brooklyn, New York ( The group, comprised of Peter Seymour, double bass; Greg Pattillo, flute; and Eric Stephenson, cello, is anything but ordinary. The three met while attending the Cleveland Institute of Music together. A milestone for the group occurred in 2006 when Pattillo’s beatbox flute video went viral on YouTube. The PROJECT Trio concept stemmed from a desire to create music for the unique flue-cello-double bass combination, and these individuals’ pure love for music was evident as they performed for us last evening.

The PROJECT Trio composes and plays music in a vast array of genres. We were treated to all sorts of tunes, from Beethoven’s “5th” and the “William Tell Overture” to funky hip-hop and some sassy salsa beats. The audience even got to experience a more theatrical side of PROJECT Trio with their rendition of “Peter and the Wolf.”

The PROJECT Trio created a special opportunity for our Summer Symposium Strings Division students, who not only participated in in workshop with the Trio, but got to perform two pieces with them onstage. And what a stellar performance it was!

PROJECT Trio in rehearsal

The PROJECT Trio giving a workshop to the Strings students


playingwithstringsStrings students performing with PROJECT Trio in Emens Auditorium

A big congratulations to the Strings students, and a warm thank you to The PROJECT Trio for the unique blessing brought by their presence at the Summer Symposium!

For more information and a full bio of The PROJECT Trio, you can visit their website,; connect with “Project Trio” on Facebook; and follow @thePROJECTTrio on Twitter.


-Carolyn T.

Carolyn Tobin is the Marketing Intern at Music for All. Drawn to all that is digital media, she was an award-recipient of the NMU Tube Student Video Contest and was named the Outstanding Graduating Senior in the Communications and Performance Studies Department at Northern Michigan University. She is a devout runner, and has also enjoyed blogging about her adventures living in Spain and Argentina. Carolyn is a music, dance and color guard enthusiast, the former color guard section leader of Legends Drum & Bugle Corps from Kalamazoo, and she has served on the guard staff for Legends and for Marian University in Indianapolis.

Published in Stories
Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Mindi Abair Experience

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We’ve only had two evening concerts so far and the talent that has come to Emens Auditorium this week has already blown me away!

On Tuesday evening, Mindi Abair and her band came to the Ball State campus and I was lucky enough to get a few moments of her time to chat after her sound check.
Anytime I need to interview I interview anyone, let alone a professional musician, I wonder what the interview will be like: if it will be easy or hard, if they will be kind and sincere or if I will feel like I’m an imposition.

Lucky for me, the moment I was introduced to Mindi Abair, I felt at ease and like I was chatting with an old friend.

It was great talking with Mindi about the Summer Symposium and what happens throughout the week. She was genuinely interested in the Music for All's mission and talked at length about how important music education was to her own life. Mindi recognizes that because of how important music was to her life, she is a strong advocate for music education.

Watch Mindi’s Interview (as well as some highlights from the concert) here:


After leaving the interview with Mindi, I couldn’t stop talking about how awesome the concert was going to be (it was a really fun sound check!) and how great of a person she was. I definitely thought I knew how great the concert would be.

But I was wrong. It was better! The moment I walked into the auditorium I could feel the energy not only coming from Mindi and her band, but from the students who were up off their feet and simply enjoying the concert. It's almost impossible for me to explain the feeling that I had while watching our campers, watch the performance. It was amazing to see them so engaged and just LOVING what was happening on stage in front of them. Here's a photo that gives you an idea of what I'm talking about.

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The best thing about Mindi Abair: she's not only talented, she's just plain fun. You could see on her face, and on the faces of the members of her band, that they were having a BLAST performing for this incredible audience. At the end of the encore Mindi even invited students on stage with her (she couldn’t have known what she was getting into there, right!?) It was a pretty incredible sight, and I’m sure many students are not going to forget the night that they got to come up on stage while Mindi Abair finished out her show!


This evening concert was defintly one of my favorites I have seen in my past three camp experiences. I hope that the students enjoyed it as much as I did!




Erin Fortune is the Marketing Coordinator focusing on digital marketing at Music for All, and has been working with Music for All for nearly three years, first in the Participant Relations department and now in marketing. She is a graduate from the Music Industry Management program at Ferris State University in Michigan and is a former Percussive Arts Society Intern and a Yamaha Corporation of America, Band and Orchestral Division Intern.


Published in Stories
Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Summer Symposium Day 2 Photo Stream

Check out the photos from Summer Symposium Day 2! (Day 4 for our awesome Leadership students!)

If the photo stream above is not viewable for you, try this link:

Published in Stories


The Music for All Summer Symposium has gone mobile! Download the “Music for All Summer Symposium 2013, presented by Yamaha” Guidebook app today to serve as a guide and companion during your time at camp!


--Full event and track-specific schedule:  Access the Summer Symposium schedules, in digital form, all in one place. This is a comprehensive resource listing each class, workshop, meal time and performance with the date, time and location information, along with additional notes and shuttle information when applicable. Click the “Schedule Tracks” module to see your camp division’s specific schedule for the week.

Too many events to keep track of? Clicking the “Add To My Schedule” button at the bottom of each event will add it to your personal “My Schedule” module. This will be helpful when selecting from elective workshops, and is an especially useful tool for those enrolled in the Directors’ Academy. You can even set pre-event reminders!

--Maps:  Don’t know your way around? No worries! Click on the “Maps” module and find a Ball State University area map, a campus map (with labeled, track-specific zones), a Family Day map, and an area restaurants map.

--Camp Faculty List:  Learn more about your clinicians with quick access to our list of faculty and their professional biographies.

--To Do List:  Jot down notes or things you just don’t want to forget!


You can get the app by:
•    Downloading “Guidebook” from the Apple App Store or the Android Marketplace
•    Visiting from your phone's browser
•    Scanning the QR code below with your mobile phone (QR-Code reader required, e.g. 'Red Laser', 'Barcode Scanner')

Once Guidebook is installed, open it and click the "Download Guide" button to search for the MFA app ("Music for All Summer Symposium 2013, presented by Yamaha" is the name).

We’re excited to have the Summer Symposium going mobile, and hope the app serves our campers well :)  Enjoy!!!

-Carolyn T.

Carolyn Tobin is the Marketing Intern at Music for All. Drawn to all that is digital media, she was an award-recipient of the NMU Tube Student Video Contest and was named the Outstanding Graduating Senior in the Communications and Performance Studies Department at Northern Michigan University. She is a devout runner, and has also enjoyed blogging about her adventures living in Spain and Argentina. Carolyn is a music, dance and color guard enthusiast, the former color guard section leader of Legends Drum & Bugle Corps from Kalamazoo, and she has served on the guard staff for Legends and for Marian University in Indianapolis.

Published in News



1. An event, discovery, or change marking an important stage or turning point in something, for example the Frog Baby Fountain at Ball State University.

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After three summers coming to the MFA Summer Symposium at Ball State University, you’d think I would have noticed most of the major landmarks on campus. Apparently I am not very observant, or maybe I just never happened to walk by the north side of the Bracken Library. Happily, today I finally noticed the Frog Baby.

The Frog Baby Fountain is one of the finest examples of a “landmark” I have ever seen on a college campus. According to the BSU website, “the chubby-cheeked little girl dangling two frogs by their feet and smiling up at the sky has become legendary at Ball State over the years as a good luck charm and a popular meeting place. In the past, campus legend had it that if you rub her nose, you would have good luck on your next exam. However, with so many students caressing her nose, she became damaged and was packed away. In 1993, Frog Baby was restored and placed in the middle of a fountain built on the north side of Bracken Library.”

I’m glad the Frog Baby is back on campus. If you have a chance, stop by and visit her, and maybe make a wish. Have a great week at Summer Symposium. Frog Baby is with us, sending her good luck charms out to all.



Nancy Carlson is the Executive Vice President and CFO at Music for All. Nancy spent many years as a parent volunteer with the Carmel High School Performing Arts Department in various capacities, from sewing choir costumes to serving as Treasurer of the Band Boosters organization. Carlson enjoyed her volunteer work so much that she decided it was time to marry her vocation and her avocation, so she joined Music for All after spending most of her career in Corporate Finance, most recently for Wellpoint, Inc. Nancy has been known to say “I’m just a band mom who spends some of her time doing accounting.”

Published in Stories
Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Past Summer Symposium Faculty

2012 Summer Symposium faculty listed in alphabetical order.
* = Division head

Jeremy Allen (Indiana University)

Joe Allison (Eastern Kentucky University)

Corey Alvaro (Carolina Crown)

Robbie Arnold (Adair County H.S., Beechwood H.S., Lafayette H.S. and Lexis WG)

Tom Aungst (Blue Stars) Vic Firth

Scott Belck (University of Cincinnati) Yamaha

Gene Berger (Ball State University)

Greg Bimm (Marion Catholic H.S.)

Mike Bolla (Center Grove M.S.)

Thomas Bough (Northern Illinois University)

Bob Buckner (Former Director of Bands at Western Carolina University)

Mark Buselli (Ball State University) *

Tom Caneva (Ball State University) *

Lee Carlson

Robert Carnochan (The University of Texas at Austin)

Christopher Cansler (Guyer H.S.)

Shannon Clark (Lafayette H.S. and Lexis WG)

Elizabeth Crawford (Ball State University)

Frank Crockett

Aryn Day-Sweeney (Ball State University)

Frank DiLallo

Amanda Drinkwater (Marcus H.S.)

Doug Droste (Oklahoma State University)

John Ellis (Crane School of Music)

Patrick Erwin (Hillgrove H.S.)

Chris Ferrell (Hillgrove H.S.)

Glenn Fugett (Westlake H.S.)

Luke Gillespie (Indiana University)

Elias Goldstein (Ball State University)

Michael Gray

Ron Hardin (Carolina Crown)

Ben Harloff (Carolina Crown)

Matt Harloff (Carolina Crown)

Susie Harloff (BOA Honor Band in the 2005 and 2009 Tournament of Roses Parade)

Lauren Heller (University of Cincinnati)

John Howell

Nathan Jennings (Pride of Cincinnati, Paramount WG and Lassiter H.S.)

Chris Kaflik (Blue Stars)

Sammy Kestenholtz Yamaha and Remo

Fran Kick (Kick it in!) *

Daniel Kirk (Blue Valley West H.S.)

Michael Klesch (Carolina Crown)

Chris Kreke (Carmel H.S.)

Scott Lang (Leadership Trainer)

Tim Lautzenheiser (Music for All Educational Advisor)

Jay Logan (Milford H.S.)

Norm Logan

Leon May (Carolina Crown)

Beth MacDonald (Center Grove H.S. and Avon H.S.)

Andrew Markworth (Carolina Crown) Vic Firth

David McGrath (Kennesaw Mountain H.S.)

Michael McIntosh (Marian University) *,  Yamaha

Erwin Mueller (Ball State University)

Joseph Munoz (Clear Lake H.S.)

Pete Opie (Ball State University)

Jeanne Parks (Drum Major Academy)

John Phillips

Tom Pompei (Centerville City Schools)

Frederick Omega Pye (University of Massachusetts)

Larry Rebillot (University of Cincinnati) *

Ricardo Robinson (Braden River H.S., Tampa Bay Thunder Drum & Bugle Corps and University of South Florida)

Ed Roush (The Cavaliers)

Jeffrey Rupert (University of Central Florida) Yamaha

Scott Rush (Wando H.S.)

Serafin Sanchez (Regis University)

Heidi I. Sarver (University of Delaware) *

Matt Savage (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

Zach Schlicher (Carolina Crown)

Kevin Sedatole (Michigan State University)

John Seidel (Ball State University)

Derek Smith (Interplay WG)

Robert Smith (Troy University)

James Stephens (Broken Arrow H.S.)

Keith Sweger (Ball State University)

Vincent Thomas (Apex WG and Onyx World WG)

Michael Townsend (Carolina Crown)

David Wandewalker (Harrison H.S.)

Shawn Vondran (Ball State University)

Mihoko Watanabe (Ball State University)

Alfred Watkins (Lassiter H.S.)

Dean Westman (Avon H.S.) *

George Wolfe (Ball State University)

Jeff Young (Carmel H.S.)

Download a 2011 Directors' Scheduleto see examples of sessions and topics.

Published in Summer Camp

DMmarchoffwinnerSY12It’s hard to believe the 2012 Summer Symposium is now over. I’m now back at the Music for All office in Indianapolis and writing from a much quieter space. It’s good to be back home, and I’ve enjoyed a chance to rest and see family.

I’m sure many of our campers have also enjoyed a chance to rest and get reacquainted with family and friends. But, I’m also discovering that I really miss the wonderful, musical world that was created on the campus of Ball State University last week. It’s always so amazing to be surrounded by people who love music and care deeply about music education!

Even though this was my fourth time at the Music for All Summer Symposium, I’ve discovered each year (and this year was no different), that I always learn something new about myself or am able to take away new lessons. And, I always have a positively life-changing experience. I hope the week was equally life-changing for all participants as well.

The final performances on Saturday truly showed off all the hard work the students put in over the course of the week. I’m so proud of the students’ accomplishments!

Last night, I was feeling a bit nostalgic and sad that camp was over. I took a moment to watch some of the Symposium videos, and I found that really helped me reflect on the fun moments from last week. (You can find the webisode playlist here, if you haven’t had a chance to view Symposium videos yet.)

I hope you had a great week at the Music for All Summer Symposium! For me, the week was reenergizing and revitalizing. It truly reminded me why I believe in music education – and why I believe in Music for All.

I was so impressed with all the students at this year’s Symposium. I hope to see many back next year. We’re already starting to think about the 2013 Symposium. I hope to see you there.

Until then,


Published in News
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