Grade 2 1/2 (3:51)
|Gary P. Gilroy|
"The Helmsman was commissioned by the Iowa Bandmasters Association for the 2012 All-Iowa 8th Grade Honor Band. It was premiered with the composer conducting on Thursday, May 10, 2012 at the Iowa Bandmasters convention in Iowa. It is a respectful nod of appreciation for the life of leadership of Dr. Myron Welch, Emeritus Professor and former Director of Bands Emeritus at the University of Iowa. The composer knows Myron Welch as a sincere and genuine man who has made it his life's practice to lead by example. Dr. Welch is respected worldwide and is known as one of the leaders or "helmsman" of the state of Iowa, a state that boasts many great names in the band world including Karl King and Meredith Willson.
Prior to his work at University of Iowa, Dr. Welch served in similar positions at Wright State University (Ohio) and Okemos High School in Okemos, Michigan. Myron Welch received the Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from Michigan State University, with majors in clarinet and bassoon. He also earned the Doctorate in Music Education from the University of Illinois where he was selected as the first candidate for the Band Conductor Internship program and studied conducting with the legendary Dr. Harry Begian. Ensembles under his leadership have performed at state and national conventions for the Michigan School Band and Orchestra Association, Ohio Music Education Association, Iowa Music Educators Association, Music Educators National Conference, Iowa Bandmasters Association, College Band Directors National Association, and the American Bandmasters Association. Dr. Welch has appeared with the Goldman Band of New York City and numerous all-state bands, honor bands, and music camps throughout the United States.
A former colleague had these kind words to offer about Dr. Myron Welch:
"My observation was that he worked hard and expected the same from those around him, yet he remained positive, cordial and humble. As host of the annual University of Iowa Honor Band and the Summer All-State Music Camp, he provided opportunities for many advanced HS students. He also had many directors to juggle at these events and did so very well. I never got the "ivory tower" feeling from him. Coming from a smaller school, I always felt he gave me equal time and respect compared to the directors from closer and larger programs. He still remembers me by name and remains friendly when we see each other at the May Bandmasters Conference."