St. Mary's University Music Department, Winona, Minnesota

Concert Band

After graduation from high school, where can people go to continue to enjoy making music together in a concert band? The SMU Concert Band strives to answer that question. If you enjoyed playing in your high school band there is a place for you in the Saint Mary’s University band program. Students from all academic areas are invited to participate. We enjoy making music in a cooperative, positive atmosphere.

The 70 member SMU Concert Band rehearses twice weekly on Monday and Wednesday evenings, as not to conflict with science labs, afternoon sports practices and most other campus events. We also welcome a number of talented high school and community musicians into our midst as part of our ongoing college/community partnership. Auditions are held at the start of each academic year for chair placement, it is expected that band members have participated in high school ensembles prior to joining the SMU band.

The band performs an average twice each semester, and participates in off-campus performances on a regular basis, performing at high schools or other regional concerts.


The SMU Band also performs for the undergraduate commencement ceremony and other official university events when the occasion arises.

Past composers who have written for the band include Steve Barnett, Lee Kesselman, Philip Rothman, internationally acclaimed composer Judith Lang Zaimont, Marc Bernstein, Paul Richards and Larry Bitensky.  On March 22nd, 2015 the band will premiere a new work by Steven Rosenhaus, a composition for baritone voice and band. For additional information on the Kaplan Commissioning Project please click on the Kaplan Project link.

Latest News

SMU Concert Band will share the stage with the Saint Mary’s Choirs for the annual Family Weekend Concert on October 4th.  The concert begins at 2 PM in the beautiful Page Theater in the Performance Center.
The band is presenting a regional premiere of a work by the Arizona state composer, Sy Brandon, titled Bandscapes. It is a multi-movement piece featuring every section of the ensemble. In addition, the ensemble will perform Percy Granger’s Irish Tune from County Derry.

The second concert of the season will be held in St. Cecilia Theater on November 16th.  This performance will feature Prelude, Siciliano and Rondo by Malcolm Arnold, and Rest by Frank Ticheli.  The Wind Ensemble will perform Donald Coakley’s exciting Celebration for Winds and Percussion. Cotter High School bands, directed by Rick Peters, will be participating in this fall festival concert, join us for a great afternoon of band music.

The Concert Band and Wind Ensemble will present the annual “Music in our Schools Month” Concert on Sunday, March 22nd.  This performance will feature the premiere of this year’s Kaplan Composition contest winner, Steven Rosenhaus. Other composers represented will include Holst, Hazo and Schubert.

Please reserve tickets for all concerts in advance at the Page Theater Box Office reservation site: or in person.

The Concert Band also performs for commencement in May, performing the Centennial March commissioned for SMU’s Centennial Celebration, composed by Eric Heukeshoven, professor of Music Industry and Jazz. The band entertains graduation ceremony families with 20-30 minute prelude concert before the 11:00 AM ceremony.

Interested in joining the band? New members from the SMU community and the greater Winona region are welcome at the beginning of each semester, contact director Janet Heukeshoven at or 507-457-1675 for details.