Pokorny Low Brass Seminar

August 4-8, 2024

Unlike many festival-type opportunities, this is an intense workshop for low brass players to really engage a wide range of musical, stylistic, technical and professional issues in-depth with unprecedented access to some of the most respected low brass players.

Participating performers include a wide range of professional symphony musicians, freelancers, college teachers, graduate and undergraduate music majors, advanced high school students and dedicated amateurs. These broad perspectives create wonderfully rich discussions that inspire and energize all the participants.

Seminar Leaders


  • Faculty solo and ensemble recitals
  • Group warm-up classes
  • Masterclasses and clinics
  • Orchestral section work and mock auditions

Specifically, here are some of the areas we will explore:

  • Warm-ups, and warm-ups that go way beyond
  • Sensitivity in balancing brass ensembles; particularly an orchestral low brass section
  • What is correct vs. what is traditional
  • Team playing and the musical brain
  • Our responsibility to the art and to the future of it
  • The importance of clarity "out front"
  • The art of listening (i.e. to finally hear what you have been listening to)
  • Solos and interpretation (i.e. getting away from fat-free, taste-free, style-free playing)
  • Life and livelihood: the balancing act
  • Guacamole, trains, astronomy and "The Search for Intelligent Life in the Modern-Day Symphony Orchestra"


You can attend the Pokorny Low Brass Seminar as a performer or auditor. All participants play in the warm-up and large ensembles and can attend any of the sessions. A limited number of performers will be accepted by audition or professional recommendation to perform in the masterclasses.

How To Apply

Apply online to be a performer, then submit a resume and links to recordings of five standard orchestral excerpts by e-mail to Andrew Glendening directly at aglendening@niu.edu by April 15, 2024. Experienced professionals and college faculty may apply by submitting a resume or professional reference.

Performers will be notified by May 1, 2024. Performers must accept or decline by June 1, 2024. Tuition for performers is $640 and is due upon acceptance. Tuition for auditors is $80 per day. Rooms are available on campus at the Holmes Student Center or at local hotels.

Registration opens on-site at 8 a.m. each day of the seminar, the seminar begins at 10 a.m. on August 4 and continues through 5 p.m. on August 8.

Cancellation Policy for Auditors and Performers

There is a $40 application fee for performers that is non-refundable. For accepted performers, the fees will be applied toward tuition. Cancellations after June 1, 2024, will not be refunded.

For auditors, there is no application fee.

Register today

Please note the charge to your credit card will appear on your statement as "NIU Outreach, DeKalb, IL. The credit card used to pay the application fee will be charged the remaining $600 upon acceptance.

Contact Us

Music Building
Monday - Friday
8 a.m. - noon
1 - 4:30 p.m.

Austyn V. Menk
Music Admissions Coordinator

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