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New directors for BYU Wind Symphony, Cougar Marching Band

The Brigham Young School of Music has announced two new appointments in its bands division.

Donald Peterson, long-time director of athletic bands and the Symphonic Band for the school, will assume directorship of the BYU Wind Symphony upon the retirement this year of David Blackinton. Fred McInnis has been appointed director of athletic bands, with responsibilities as director of the Cougar Marching Band, the Men’s and Women’s Pep Bands and the two University Bands.

Before coming to BYU, Peterson was band director at American Fork High School, where his concert, marching and jazz bands were recipients of more than 100 awards and recognitions. He was also recognized with the Utah Music Educators Association's "Superior Accomplishment Award" in 1982 and awarded both the Utah State and Southwest regional "Stanbury" awards recognizing outstanding young band directors by the American School Band Directors Association.

He maintains a very active schedule as adjudicator, clinician and guest conductor throughout the United States while continuing to mentor many of his graduates teaching in the Utah public schools.

Peterson received both his bachelor's and master's degrees in music education from BYU followed by a doctor of musical arts degree in instrumental music and conducting from Arizona State University.

McInnis has served since 2002 as assistant director of bands. Prior to his appointments at BYU, he taught high school bands in Meridian, Columbia and Hattiesburg, Miss., for 13 years. He has taught marching percussion throughout south Mississippi, and his drumlines consistently received superior ratings for 12 years at all marching festivals attended. His percussion students consistently placed in the upper 10 percent of the Mississippi Lion’s All-State Band.

He was also actively involved as a percussionist for the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra, and was principal percussionist for the Meridian Symphony and Pops Orchestras.

McInnis is a graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi with bachelor's and master's degrees in music education.

Writer: Ed Blaser

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