University of South Florida

School of Music

USF College of The Arts

Festival of Winds Information

The University of South Florida’s School of Music is proud to host the 48th Festival of Winds on November 30 - December 3, 2023. FOW was founded by Jim Croft in 1974 and has grown to become one of the finest events of its type in the southeast. In addition to playing in one of three large concert bands conducted by outstanding clinicians, students will participate in master classes, attend multiple concerts, play in a chamber ensemble or jazz band, and experience the thrill of being on a college campus for four days. Participants are nominated by their band directors based on their musical and leadership excellence, and must be high school sophomores, juniors, or seniors in order to be eligible.     

The cost for FOW this year is $295 for Resident Students, and $250 for Commuters. 

The festival will once again feature performances by two outstanding high school bands. This year the terrific Wind Ensembles from Buchholz High School and Gaither High School will perform on Friday evening. 


Nominations for the 2022 Festival of Winds are now closed. Band Directors who have questions should contact Dr. McCutchen at


The 2023 Clinicians are Dr. Sarah McKoin (Texas Tech University), Dr. Rebecca Phillips (Colorado State University), and Dr. William Wiedrich (University of South Florida). In addition, students will interact with and learn from USF's outstanding School of Music faculty.

Sarah McKoin headshot image

Dr. Sarah McKoin is the Director of Bands and Professor of Conducting at Texas Tech University. Her responsibilities include Conductor and Musical Director of the TTU Symphonic Wind Ensemble, administrating the graduate program in wind conducting, teaching conducting and wind literature, and overseeing all facets of the University band program, which includes 5 concert bands, the 400 member Goin' Band from Raiderland, and other athletic bands.

Dr. McKoin holds her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin as well as degrees from Wichita State University and Michigan State University. Prior to her appointment at Texas Tech, Professor McKoin was the Director of Bands at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and held appointments at the State University of New York at Buffalo and SUNY Fredonia. Additionally, McKoin spent nine summers in residence on the conducting faculty at the Brevard Music Center in Brevard, North Carolina as the Director of the Transylvania Wind Ensemble, and has taught at the Interlochen Arts Academy.

Dr. McKoin maintains an active schedule as a guest conductor and clinician and has traveled extensively throughout the United States and abroad. Recently, she served as a clinician for a band festival in Thailand, and has worked for the Asian Pacific American School Honor Band in Guangzhou, China comprised of 100 students from Korea, Hong Kong, China, Malaysia, Kuala Lampur, Shanghai and other Southeast Asian cities. She has guest conducted in Taipei, Taiwan and has traveled to Tel Aviv, Israel to serve as producer for the world premiere recording of Roberto Sierra's Fantasia Correliana with the Castellani-Andriaccio guitar duo. 

Rebecca Phillips headshot image

Dr. Rebecca Phillips is Professor of Music and Director of Bands at Colorado State University where she conducts the CSU Wind Symphony and guides all aspects of the band and graduate wind conducting programs. Prior to this appointment, she served as the Associate Director of Bands and Director of Athletic Bands at the University of South Carolina where she was responsible for directing the Symphonic Winds Concert Band, “The Mighty Sound of the Southeast” Carolina Marching Band, “Concocktion” Pep Bands, teaching undergraduate instrumental conducting, and directing the Carolina Summer Drum Major Clinic.

A native of the Washington, D.C. area, Dr. Phillips earned her Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from The Florida State University, Master of Music degrees in conducting and trombone performance from the University of South Florida, and a Doctorate of Musical Arts in conducting at Louisiana State University. She served as a secondary school band director for seven years in Florida, including Director of Bands at Howard W. Blake Performing Arts High School in Tampa, Florida where she developed an award-winning concert band program.

Dr. Phillips has served as a guest-conductor, clinician, and performer throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. She regularly conducts collegiate honor bands, all-state bands, and festival bands across the United States, Canada, and Europe. As a trombonist, Dr. Phillips’ performances can be found on several internationally distributed recordings. She has performed with the National Symphony Orchestra, U.S. Army Band (Pershing’s Own), the Tallahassee Symphony, and the Tampa Bay Opera Orchestra. She has also performed internationally in England, Mexico, the Caribbean, Russia, and Sweden, and has toured as a trombonist with Johnny Mathis and Barry Manilow.

William Wiedrich headshot image

William W. Wiedrich has served on USF’s Music Faculty since 1995. His responsibilities include conducting the University of South Florida Symphony Orchestra, teaching a large studio of graduate and undergraduate conductors as well as courses in Twentieth-Century Music Literature. He also serves as Music Director of the Tampa Metropolitan Youth Orchestra. His youth orchestras have appeared twice in Carnegie Hall. The TMYO was recently featured at an American String Teachers Association National Convention and has maintained a long-standing commissioning program of music for young orchestras.

Wiedrich earned his DMA in Orchestral/Wind Band Conducting from the University of Michigan, a Master of Music from the University of Oklahoma, and a Bachelor of Music Education from Michigan State University. Wiedrich previously served as faculty at Michigan State University, East Carolina University, and as visiting faculty at the University of Michigan. He has been a guest conductor and primary conducting teacher at the Jinsha Summer Music Festival in association with China’s Sichuan School of Music, at the Interlochen Arts Academy, and at the Kinhaven Music School in Vermont. He has been the principal orchestra conductor at both the SAS Summer Music Festival and the IASAS International Music Festival in Singapore. He is a regular conductor at Upper Michigan’s Iron County Youth Camp “Batawagama”. He has also conducted the summer orchestra at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and All-State Orchestras in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Michigan, New York, and Ohio, among others.

Wiedrich was named Outstanding College Music Educator of the Year by the Florida Music Education Association in 2005. He has appeared on numerous compact disc recordings as conductor and producer, most recently on the Albany, Blue Griffin, Capstone, Koch, and Potenza Music labels. He is also a published composer and arranger.