After a long hiatus, we're ready to get back into it by saying OSKEE WOW WOW. Steve and I visited the University of Illinois and sat down with Professor Barry Houser in the historic Harding Band building.
Professor Houser talks about his journey to the Big Ten, going digital with the marching band, things that go "bump in the night" in the Harding Band building, and much more!
Barry L. Houser is the Associate Director of Bands, Director of the Marching Illini, and Director of the Fighting Illini Athletic Bands where his responsibilities include conducting the Hindsley Symphonic Band, the Athletic Bands, and the 375 member Marching Illini in addition to teaching marching band procedures. Professor Houser’s teaching experience encompasses both extensive public school and university experiences.
A native of Indiana, Professor Houser served as Director of Bands and Performing Arts Director at NorthWood High School in Nappanee, Indiana, where his bands developed a reputation for great musicianship which in turn earned the program state and national recognition. Prior to his position at NorthWood, Houser served as the Assistant Director of Bands at Buchholz High School in Gainesville, Florida. Bands under Houser have performed at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the NBC Today Show, the ISSMA State Marching Finals, and the IMEA State Convention. Other performances include the Indianapolis 500 Parade, the Target Thanksgiving Day Parade, the Outback Bowl Parade and Half-Time Show, the Hollywood Christmas Parade, the Washington DC National Memorial Parade, Chicago Bears Game, and performances with Maynard Ferguson, the Dallas Brass, Canadian Brass, Gregg Potter as well as many other talented artists.
Houser holds professional memberships in the College Band Directors National Association, National Band Association, MENC, Golden Key National Honor Society, Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity, Kappa Kappa Psi International Band Fraternity, Honorary member of Tau Beta Sigma, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, and has been honored by the Indiana General Assembly and the US House of Representatives. He is the recipient of the Indianapolis Star Academic All Star Award, the WNDU Channel 16 Excellence in Education Award, as well as being listed in various “Who’s Who” publications throughout his career.
Professor Houser is active nationally as a guest conductor and clinician in both the marching and concert mediums. He has served on the staff of the Macy’s Great American Marching Band and the National Events Mass Band, which performs annually at the Chick-Fil-A Bowl in Atlanta, Georgia. He is a contributing author to the popular marching band textbook The System by Gary Smith as well as numerous submissions to the Teaching Music through Performance in Band series. Houser has served as Governor of the North Central District of Kappa Kappa Psi and currently serves as chapter advisor for the Nu Xi Chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi on our campus as well as Chapter Advisor for the Phi Mu Alpha Chapter. He is currently serving on the Athletic Band Board for the College Band Directors National Association and as the North Central Division Chair for the National Band Association. During the summer, Professor Houser is the Director and President of the renowned Smith Walbridge Clinics, one of the largest marching band | leadership camps of its type in the country with locations in Illinois and Florida, attracting over 1000 students each year.
Professor Houser is an Educational Clinician for Conn-Selmer