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Sat, September 30, 2023
York University: 4700 Keele St., Toronto
Accolade East
Rm. 235 (workshops), Rm.231 (band room)

 Please email Hugh Corbett at with any questions

What is it?

The Beginning Band Symposium provides an opportunity for professional development with an experienced clinician. Topics may include, but are not limited to, rehearsal techniques, repertoire ideas, introductory band class lessons, engagement and program development. BBS also allows teachers to connect with colleagues from across the province.

2023 FEES

Please note that you have to be a member of the OBA to attend the York/OBA Beginning Band Symposium.

The event fees are as follows:

New/Renewing Membership (Regular) & Symposium Fee ..............................  $85

New/Renewing Membership (Student/Retiree) & Symposium Fee .... $50

Symposium Fee

(Regular)........................................ $60

Symposium Fee


By selecting either of the above two options, you agree that you are a member of the Ontario Band Association. Should you not be a member, you will be asked to purchase a membership upon confirmation.




Motivation, recruitment, and retention

How to focus on fundamentals without losing student interest

What they play determines whether they stay

Programming, pace, and product

Getting your students to fall in love...with band music

Q&A with Darryl


8:30 – 9:00    Registration, coffee & muffins, secure your seat!

9:00 – 9:45   How do we attract and retain amazing, enthusiastic, and energetic students?

Darryl Ferguson shares his thoughts about: "What motivates students to demonstrate engagement and follow-through? How do we build a program or classroom that has an environment of excitement and drive to learn? How do we attract an retain amazing, enthusiastic, and energetic students?" He will also discuss the importance of motivating students in varied ways and will identify key steps to take in each month of the school year to ensure healthy enrolment.


9:45 – 10:45  Teaching Strategies
How to focus on fundamentals without losing student interest. Darryl conducts the Runnymede Wind Ensemble through several beginning band pieces while discussing relevant rehearsal strategies appropriate not only for beginning bands but for more experienced players as well. This session will explore ways to address the fundamentals in exciting ways for young students.

10:45  Morning Break

11:00 – 12:00   Repertoire Selection
What they play determines whether they stay. In this reading session, Darryl will provide an overview of what types of pieces may help you reach your goals in your band program, and will investigate the important link between repertoire choices and student retention. Also included are suggestions for specific repertoire (Grade 0.5 - 1.5)

12:00 Lunch Break

1:00 – 2:00  Teaching Resources
Programming, pace, and product. This session will present a variety of ideas and considerations for choosing literature that will help you achieve your music and curricular goals. Topics covered include considerations when selecting a method book, and the importance of programming various composers, styles, and tonalities to help develop musical literacy. This session will include methods, supplemental books, and fundamental strategies to address technique - so everyone can hit the ground running.

2:00 – 2:15  Afternoon Break

2:20 – 3:00  Building Community

Getting your students to fall in love...with band. Strategies for helping students develop a passionate connection to band music. Content includes meeting students where they are at developmentally, using social experiences to connect students to the music and each other, and the importance of student voice as a reason to get your students to start a love affair with band music.

3:00 – 3:30  Final Remarks/Q&A/Networking

2023 Clinician: Darryl Ferguson

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Darryl Ferguson received a Bachelor of Music (Applied Trumpet) from Brandon University, a Master's of Music (Trumpet Performance) from the University of South Florida, and a Bachelor of Education (After Degree) from the University of Manitoba. He currently teaches at Acadia Junior High School in Winnipeg, MB, where he directs four concert bands and a jazz ensemble.

Under his direction, the Acadia band program consistently receives recognition for outstanding performance at festivals across western Canada and the northern United States. The school's ensembles regularly achieve superior ratings for their festival performances, and are invited to participate at MusicFest Canada. Darryl is highly involved in the Manitoba music education commnity. He is involved in many Manitoba Band Association initiatives, including serving as the MBA representative for the Tempo Music Conference, chairperson for the Manitoba provincial Junior and Intermediate Honour Bands, chairperson for the MBA Jazz Festival, and co-chair of the MBA's solo challenge.

In 2021, Darryl was awarded the Manitoba Band Association's Award of Distinction in recognition of his outstanding contribution to music education in Manitoba. In 2018, Darryl was awarded the Fort Richmond MLA Community Hero Certificate for his service in the community.

Darryl is active as an adjudicator, guest conductor, clinician, and freelance trumpet player. He also serves as a sessional instructor and applied trumpet teacher at Canadian Mennonite University. He is also the conductor of the Rupertsland Brass Band. He has completed Level One of the Canadian Wind Conductors Development Program.


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