Instrumental Conducting Symposium


Refine your conducting skills in a "user-friendly" climate and study with Craig Kirchhoff, one of America’s most respected conductors and teachers. To encourage a mutually supportive atmosphere, all Symposium participants are encouraged to play their major instrument in the ensemble when not conducting. Lunch is included in the registration fee for all participants.

As a special bonus, this year's symposium will include an introduction to Body Mapping by Andover Educator and professional oboist Jane Murray. Appropriate use of the body can enhance the delivery of musical ideas to your ensemble. Conductors will receive individual recorded analysis of their movement as they conduct, and all participants will be given a one-hour explanation of the basics of balance and arm movement. Learn more about Body Mapping at Outside Link


To register, visit our website. Space is limited to ten Principal Conductors and will be assigned based on order of received applications and fees.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Two Levels of Participation Are Available

Principal Conductor

Fee: $300

Conductors seeking an intensive, hands-on experience will conduct the Rhode Island College Wind Ensemble in two separate 15-minute sessions (morning and afternoon). All conducting will be professionally recorded on DVD for you to keep. The clinicians will offer both live and taped critique. Repertoire will be selected by each Principal Conductor from the attached list. Space is limited to ten Principal Conductors and will be assigned based on order of received applications and fees.


Fee: $100

Those wishing to audit the workshop without actually conducting will gain valuable insight by observing Mr. Reynolds’s work with the Principal Conductors. Observer/Participants will share in all Symposium sessions, and space is unlimited.

8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

John Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts
Rhode Island College

  • Craig Kirchhoff, Clinician
  • Robert Franzblau, Clinician
  • Rhode Island College Wind Ensemble
  • Rhode Island Wind Ensemble

Symposium Schedule

  • 8:00 a.m. Registration
  • 8:30 a.m. Warmup
  • 9:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. Conducting Sessions
  • 12:00 p.m. Lunch (included in registration cost)
  • 1:30 - 4:15 p.m. Conducting Sessions
  • 4:15 p.m. Wrap-up, Questions, and Evaluation


Repertoire will be selected by each Principal Conductor from the following list. Choose two works from among the following:

Symphony No. 1 The Lord of the Rings (mvt’s 1, 3, or 4)de Meij
Scenes from the Louvre (any movement)Dello Joio
Air for BandErickson
American SaluteGould
On a Hymn Song of Philip BlissHolsinger
First Suite in E Flat (any movement)Holst
Second Suite in F (any movement)Holst
Sheltering SkyMackie
Festive OvertureShostakovich/Hunsberger
Folk DancesShostakovich/Reynolds

Professional Development Units

Professional Development Units (PDU’s) are available for all work- shop participants. Six hours of Professional Development credit will be given by the Symposium.

Graduate Credit

Graduate credit from Rhode Island College is available.  One hour of graduate credit may be elected  by Principal Conductors.  Tuition for this option is in addition to the workshop fee.  A short paper is also required. For details call (401) 456-9514 or email

Hotel Accommodations

Participants coming to the symposium from out of town can find a list of nearby hotels here. The College is approximately 13 miles from Providence's T.F. Green Airport (PVD).

Craig Kirchhoff, Clinician

Craig Kirchhoff is Professor of Conducting and Director Emeritus of University Bands at the University of Minnesota where he conducted the University Wind Ensemble and guest conducted in the University Opera Program. Professor Kirchhoff coordinated the graduate program in Wind Ensemble/Band Conducting and guided all aspects of the University of Minnesota wind band program since 1993. Born and educated in Wisconsin, Mr. Kirchhoff brings to his position a wide knowledge of both traditional and contemporary literature. He has won critical acclaim from composers Dominick Argento, Warren Benson, William Bolcom, Henry Brant, Susan Botti. Elliott Carter, Michael Colgrass, John Corigliano, Michael Daugherty, Karel Husa, Libby Larsen, George Perle, Vincent Persichetti, Carter Pann, Stephen Paulus, Kevin Puts, Einojuhani Rautavaara, Gunther Schuller, Joseph Schwantner, Steven Stucky, Elliott Schwartz, Frank Ticheli, Dana Wilson, Chen Yi, and others.

Prior to his appointment to the faculty of the University of Minnesota, Professor Kirchhoff served in a similar capacity as Director of Bands at The Ohio State University for fourteen years, as Director of Bands at Washington State University for two years, and Associate Director of Bands at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee for one year. Mr. Kirchhoff was the recipient of The Ohio State University Alumni Distinguished Teaching Award and The Ohio State University School of Music Distinguished Teaching Award. Professor Kirchhoff is an advisor to the BandQuest Series published by the American Composers Forum, he joins James Galway, Eddie Daniels, Wynton Marsalis, and Dawn Upshaw on the Advisory Board for SmartMusic produced by the MakeMusic Corporation, and he serves as the Artistic Advisor for the Windependence Wind Band Series published by Boosey & Hawkes.

Professor Kirchhoff is past president of the College Band Directors National Association and is a member of the American Bandmasters Association, the National Band Association, the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles, the Music Educators National Conference, and served as the founding editor and principal advisor of the College Band Directors National Association Journal.

Professor Kirchhoff has appeared as guest conductor, clinician, and lecturer throughout the United States, Australia, Canada, China, Japan, Taiwan, Europe, and Scandinavia. He enjoyed a long association with the Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra during Frederick Fennell’s tenure as Music Director and he has recorded with them on the Kosei Publishing label.

Robert Franzblau, Clinician

Dr. Robert Franzblau serves as Professor of Music and Director of Bands at Rhode Island College, a position he has held since 1997. In addition to conducting the Wind Ensemble and Chamber Winds, his duties include teaching courses in conducting and music education at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Under his direction, the Rhode Island College Wind Ensemble has performed to enthusiastic reviews at regional conferences of the National Association for Music Education and the College Band Directors National Conference. He is Music Director of the Rhode Island Wind Ensemble, an adult community band based in Providence.

A graduate of the University of Iowa (B.Mus. 1981), Northwestern University (M.Mus. 1985), and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (Ph.D. 1996), Dr. Franzblau’s public school teaching experience includes five years at Oconomowoc (WI) High School, where under his direction the OHS Symphonic Band received top honors at state, regional, and national competitions. His 2013 book, So You Want to Be a Music Major: A Guide for High School Students, Their Parents, Guidance Counselors, and Music Teachers, is published by Meredith Music Publications. He is in demand nationally as a guest conductor, adjudicator, and clinician.

Jane Murray, Clinician

Rhode Island Philharmonic oboist and Andover Educator Jane Murray has studied Body Mapping for the past eight years, after seeking a solution to years of pain from playing English horn.  With the unique perspective of 15 years of experience as a gymnastics coach (in her younger days), she understands anatomy and body mechanics, and uses that knowledge to apply the principals of Body Mapping for musicians of all genres. Her website is Outside Link


Rhode Island College Wind Ensemble

The Rhode Island College Wind Ensemble functions as both a full wind band and as a pool of players for performing chamber wind repertoire. Open by audition to students of all majors at the College, it is nonetheless composed primarily of undergraduate music majors. The Wind Ensemble is committed to the performance of new music, having recently premiered works by Barbara Kolb, James Bohn, Alan Shockley, Michael DeQuattro, Michael Weinstein, and several student composers, in addition to participating in the National Wind Ensemble Consortium Group. The Rhode Island College Wind Ensemble has collaborated with the Roger Williams University Dance Theatre and the Rhode Island College Dance Company for premiere performances of original music and choreography. Recent guest conductors include Frank L. Battisti, Roger Cichy, and Gunther Schuller, and guest soloists (in addition to Rhode Island College music faculty) include Jens Lindemann (trumpet), Otis Murphy (saxophone), Peter Ferry (percussion), and Tony Clements (tuba). Invited performances include appearances at the MENC Eastern Division Conference (2003) and the CBDNA Eastern Division Conference (2005 and 2009).

Rhode Island Wind Ensemble

The Rhode Island Wind Ensemble is a dynamic performing group of more than forty skilled professional and amateur musicians. All the members are volunteers: people with a wide age range, from all walks of life. The Rhode Island Wind Ensemble provides a forum for this diverse membership to perform and share their love of music with the community. Selected as our new director beginning in January 2009, Dr. Robert Franzblau continues the tradition of the founder of our group, Frank Marinaccio, in offering a wide repertoire of music: orchestral transcriptions, opera and symphonic pieces, ethnic, contemporary and traditional band repertoire, jazz, musical and movie themes. The ensemble has considerable experience playing in concert halls and at outdoor venues, with annual concerts throughout Rhode Island and nearby Massachusetts. We have collaborated with choral, instrumental, community and school groups, including Providence College Ensembles. Our concerts often feature instrumental and vocal soloists drawn from our group and from the professional community.

Questions? Contact Us!

Page last updated: November 17, 2015