Four State Band Festival

2021 Virtual 4 State Band Festival

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Making the Virtual Experience Meaningful

  • Our focus is on both the process and the product:
    • In addition to working on creating a great individual performance, students will learn about the importance of working on one unified interpretive vision in ensemble playing. Participants will learn how specific ensemble rehearsal goals can be applied to their practice routine and performance preparation. We will also emphasize the heightened importance of individual execution of elements like tempo and intonation in this format. The virtual experience is actually an ideal environment in which to make concrete progress on these important ensemble skills, providing a unique opportunity for individual growth.
    • We will not ignore the importance of the community aspect of festival participation, and will actively encourage interaction, sharing, and discussion among students and our guest artists throughout the process.
    • We will be working with a great production company, which has consistently delivered great performances throughout the past year, and has developed an innovative process in putting together virtual concerts.
  • Our target is 100 participants, so please help us in selecting a limited number of your talented students who would most benefit from this experience, particularly older students who may not get the opportunity to participate in future in-person Four State festivals. Thank you for helping to keep our costs manageable!
March 12 at Midnight
    • Deadline for student registration. Nominate students at this Google form:
    • Once nominations are in, we will send music to participants, along with instructions for the recording process from our production company.
    • Students will be given access to videos and notes from our guest artists, giving interpretive descriptions, and section-by-section rehearsal ideas. 
March 25
    • 6:30 pm: Zoom masterclass for each section with PSU faculty. Students will work through the Four State music, and topics relating to their instrument.
    • 6:30 pm: Optional Zoom Q&A with composer Aaron Perrine. Students will have an opportunity to talk with the composer in an informal setting.
April 9
    • Deadline for submitting an audio recording of the piece. Instructions will be provided by our production company. These audio recordings will be put together into a master track, and used to make a separate video recording.
April 30
    • Deadline for submitting a video recording, this will be the visual portion of the final product. Instructions will be provided.
May 17
    • Release of the final product: a fully produced virtual performance, included in a brief program with the PSU Wind Ensemble.

Apply Now for the 2021 Festival!!    Click Here for Printable Poster

Meet Our Clinicians

Tonya Mitchell Spradlin 2020Dr. Tonya Mitchell-Spradlin is the Assistant Director of Bands and Associate Director of Athletic Bands at the University of South Carolina. There, she assists with the Carolina Band, directs the women’s basketball band, and conducts the University Band. Dr. Mitchell-Spradlin also teaches courses in the music education department and oversees student teachers. Prior to her appointment at USC, she served as interim Director of Athletic Bands at Valdosta State University in Valdosta, GA, and spent 4 years as band director at Chamblee Charter High School in Chamblee, GA.

Dr. Mitchell-Spradlin received her Bachelor of Music Education degree with a minor in wind conducting from Indiana University where she was also drum major of the Marching Hundred. She holds a Master of Music Education degree from the University of Georgia, and a Doctor of Musical Arts in Wind Conducting degree from the University of Kansas. Dr. Mitchell-Spradlin is a member of Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity, and an honorary member of Tau Beta Sigma.


Aaron Perrine 2020Aaron Perrine’s music has been performed by some of the leading ensembles and soloists across the United States and beyond. He is a two-time winner of the American Bandmasters Association Sousa/Ostwald Award for his compositions: Only Light in 2015 and Pale Blue on Deep in 2013. Only Light—commissioned by the University of Iowa Symphony Band, Richard Mark Heidel, conductor—was included on the latest University of Kansas Wind Ensemble recording (Of Shadow and Light, Klavier). Another one of his compositions—Temperance—recently won the 2017 CBDNA Young Band Composition Contest. His music for winds has also been featured at the 2017 CBDNA National Conference, multiple regional CBDNA Conferences, The Midwest Clinic, The Western International Band Clinic, and at numerous all-state, state conference and honor band concerts.

For additional information, contact us or call (620) 235-4466.