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Midwest Winds is a dynamic chamber ensemble that serves as an ambassador of the US Air Force Band of Mid-America, located at Scott AFB, Illinois, thirty minutes from St. Louis. The musical reach of this ensemble is wide, existing primarily as a conventional wind quintet (flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, horn), but can easily transform into various chamber music configurations. The core members consist of five active-duty airmen who have an abundance of professional experience and strong pedagogical backgrounds.
This ensemble has a multi-faceted role across a ten-state region throughout the Midwest. At home, the group serves a crucial function within Scott Air Force Base, providing music for military retirements, changes of command and other official military functions.
Presenting public concerts to honor service members past and cultivating esprit de corps is also central to the group’s mission. Much of the time, these concerts are held in communities that do not normally have the benefit or accessibility to personally connect with the Air Force or live musical performances. Midwest Winds is the first point of contact for larger Air Force objectives for some audiences and provides a well-rounded introduction into the music artform. Because of this multifaceted role, the ensemble offers a wide range of musical literature from classical staples, contemporary works, marches, patriotic crowd pleasers and pops.
Educational outreach is also an integral component of our mission. The Midwest Winds presents master classes in wind chamber repertoire and instrumental technique at various universities and general music clinics at K-12 institutions, showcasing the unique job of being an Air Force musician, while fostering growth and inspiration at each level of education. A partial list of schools Midwest Winds has worked with and performed at are: Northern Illinois University, DePaul University, Chicago College of Performing Arts, Northwestern University, University of Kentucky, University of Louisville, and University of Arkansas. Recently, the group has also been featured at the Arkansas Bandmaster’s Association and the Kentucky Musical Educators Association.