Mr. Mike Wawrzynski, Director of Bands

Mr. Mike Wawrzynski, Director of Bands

Mr. Michael Wawrzynski is the Director of Bands at United Township High School and began his post in 2016.

 He was the Director of Bands at North High School, a member of the Kern High School District, in Bakersfield, CA. For three years he taught grades 9-12, focusing in instrumental music. He graduated from Western Michigan University in April of 2013. He hails from Warren, MI. (a suburb of Detroit).  In conjunction with his studies at WMU, he intern taught for Mattawan Consolidated Schools and its instrumental music education program. He team taught 460 students across grades 6-12, under the tutelage of Mr. Mark Greer and Mr. Bill Boswell. 

At North High School, Mr. Wawrzynski was the director of the "North Star Alliance" band program. Within it are two concert bands, a competitive marching band, jazz band, percussion, and colorguard class. When Mr. Wawrzynski began his appointment in 2013, the program total was about 70 individual students (some enrolling in multiple music classes). As of 2016, the program had about 120 students. This result was due to increased communication between North High School and its feeder programs. This is a notable feet, as overall enrollment at North High School has declined since 2008 (2,497) to 2013. (1,576). Another facet of this program is the socioeconomic status of North High. The average family income in the state of California is $60,190/year. The average household income of Oildale (the community where NHS is located) is $16,624/year (based on the number of single family homes). Despite this fact, the program has been able to sustain itself fiscally and operate at a very high success rate. 

Mr. Wawrzynski has performed in various ensembles, including the Bakersfield Winds, Bakersfield Jazz Orchestra, Warren Concert Band, Western Michigan University Bronco Marching Band, University Symphonic Band, University Concert Band, Faculty Brass Ensemble, Commencement Brass Ensemble, WMU Jazz Lab Band, and various Tuba/Euphonium ensembles and chamber groups. Most recently he has performed with the Bakersfield Winds. He has performed with these ensembles in Washington DC, Ohio, Minnesota, Texas, and across Michigan. In addition, he has performed in several undergraduate and graduate level recitals, aiding others in progress towards their degree. He is affiliated with the National Association for Music Education (NAfME), California Music Educator's Association (CMEA), and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.  While apart of the WMU Bronco Band, he was a drum major for the 2012 season. Additionally, he has arranged music for the Bronco Band's half time show. 

Before his appointment in California, he was a sought out instructor for marching bands throughout Michigan. He has worked for Warren Consolidated Public Schools, Portage Public Schools, Hackett Catholic Central High School, St. John's Public Schools, and East Grand Rapids Public Schools in that capacity.

In his spare time, he enjoys time with his wife and two dogs,  building and repairing PCs, keeping up to date on technology, photography, and watching and playing hockey. He also enjoys writing and arranging music and drill for marching band.

 

Joe Angelo - Assistant Marching Band Director/Percussion Caption Head/Percussion Arranger.... Bio coming soon.

Anthony Greer - Assistant Marching Band Director/Visual Caption Head... Bio coming soon.


Abby Petty - Colorguard Caption Head... Bio coming soon.


Jennifer King - Colorguard Tech

Jennifer King - Colorguard Tech

Jen is a UTHS Marching Panther and band alumni and graduated from UT in 1995. Following graduation from UT, Jen marched with the University of Illinois Marching Illini Flag Corps under the direction of the incomparable Gary Smith! She was captain her senior year and was responsible for choreographing and teaching routines each week. Jen returned to UT in the fall of 1999 as an assistant color guard instructor with a speciality in cleaning routines. The UT Color Guard won numerous awards and titles during her and Sara Maccabee's tenure. Jen has also been a judge for Competetive Colorguard. She is thrilled to return to the marching field and assist her beloved alma matter. 

Jen resides in East Moline with her husband, Scott, (a teacher at UT!) and her two children. She is an Instructional Coach at Glenview Middle School in East Moline. In her free time, she enjoys all things Disney, traveling and juggling her children's activities! 


Emily Spenard - Marching Band Tech... Bio coming soon.


Ms. Katy Reed, Marching Tech

Ms. Katy Reed, Marching Tech

Katy began music at a young age, starting in piano lessons at 3. She started band at Glenview Middle School beginning with oboe and later switching to bassoon. Upon entering United Township High School she joined the marching panthers as part of the drum line. 

Since graduating from United Township in 2015 she has attended Illinois State University pursuing a double major in Music Education and Bassoon Performance. She has participated in the Big Red Marching Machine for the last two years traveling most recently to Ireland to take part in the City of Dublin St. Patrick's Day Parade and Limerick International Marching Band Festival.

 Katy anticipates graduating in the fall of 2019 and hopes to find a job teaching within the Chicago Public Schools.


Pete Philhower - Marching Percussion Tech... Bio coming soon.


Mr. Mike Wells, Drill Designer and Design Consultant

Mr. Mike Wells, Drill Designer and Design Consultant

Mike Wells currently resides in Canton, MI where he serves as assistant Director of Bands at Plymouth-Canton High School.

As a sought after drill designer, Mike has worked with ensembles across Michigan, Illinois, Kentucky, Ohio, North Carolina and Virginia among others. Some of his clients have included Kentucky State Champions Estill County and Russell County, Wisconsin State Champion River Falls, Barren County (KY), Olentangy (OH), United Township (IL), Washington County (KY), Hardin Valley Academy (TN) and Fairfax (VA) among several others. These ensembles have enjoyed success at numerous BOA events and earned several State and Regional Championships as well as visual awards. In the 2016 competitive season, five KMEA State Finalist ensembles performed Mike's drill, representing the top four bands in five classes across the state of Kentucky. 

Mike has instructed some of the finest ensembles across the country. Currently, Mike teaches the nationally acclaimed Plymouth-Canton Educational Park Marching Band, where he has served on both the brass and visual staff. Mike has previously worked in several capacities with BOA Semi-Finalists Lockport Township (IL), Rockford (MI), and Reeths-Puffer (MI), among others. Mike has also served as Visual Caption Head for Genesis Percussion (PIW) and currently serves as the visual designer for Capital City Percussion (PIW). Mike also teaches on the visual staff for the Boston Crusaders. Prior to working with Boston, Mike served on the visual staff of the Blue Knights, Teal Sound, and was the Visual Caption Head at the Troopers, earning a top 12 finish in the visual caption during his time.

As a performer, Mike began his marching career with the Glassmen, and was fortunate to be a member of Carolina Crown, playing both baritone and euphonium. Mike holds a B.M. in Euphonium Performance from Western Michigan University and Post-Baccalaureate teaching certificate in music from Westfield State University in Westfield, MA.


Mr. Ben Lee, Marching Band Arranger

Mr. Ben Lee, Marching Band Arranger

Mr. Ben Lee's love for music came at an early age when he began taking piano lessons from Mrs. Phyllis Egnew. Growing up, he was a “house cat,” as his Mom always said, spending way too much time inside playing Nintendo games (if that’s possible,). Through the years, he printed off sheet music for every Nintendo theme I could find, geeked out, and created medleys of my favorite tunes. It was then when he found his  passion for music. Later, he joined the Russell County Band in 6th grade, had his life changed, went on to Western Kentucky University where—after he got over his dreams of being Mr. Lawyer Boy, J.D.—he decided to marry his heart exclusively to music.

Since then, he have been so fortunate to teach and write marching band shows for some awesome students. He works with fine directors and staff teams. He have designed for ensembles who achieved such accomplishments as state and circuit champions, runners-up, and finalists, including Bands of America Grand Nationals Class Champion, and Regional and Super Regional Finalists.

His music for wind ensemble is published by C. Alan Publications. Please check out his composition, Flaher, at their website.


Mr. David Maccabee, Program Consultant

Mr. David Maccabee, Program Consultant

David Maccabee was Director of Bands at United Township High School since 1986-2016.  He previously taught in the Geneseo and Nokomis Illinois School systems.  At United Township High School, he was director of all instrumental music ensembles, including Concert Band, Symphonic Band, Marching Band, and pep band.  During Mr. Maccabee’s tenure, enrollment in the UTHS Band program has grown from 100 to nearly 170 members.

Mr. Maccabee was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, and raised in White Bear Lake, Minnesota.  He moved to Illinois at age 16, and graduated from J.D. Darnell High School in Geneseo, Illinois.  In 1982, he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education from Augustana College in Illinois.  He received his Master’s Degree in Music Education from VanderCook College of Music Education in 1989.

David Maccabee is a frequent guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator throughout the country.  He has conducted numerous summer band camps, including Western Illinois University, the University of Iowa, and the University of Illinois.  Mr. Maccabee has also served the Illinois Music Educator’s Association as Division Chair, All-State Auditioner, and the IMEA Mentoring Council.  His professional affiliations include the United Township Education Association, the Natioal Education Association, the Illinois Music Educator’s Association, the Music Educator’s National Conference, the National Band Association, and Pi Kappa Lambda.  Mr. Maccabee has received citations for excellence from the city of East Moline, the East Moline Rotary Club, John Deere and Co., United Township High School, and West Illinois University.  In addition, he has received the National Band Association’s Citation of Excellence on 6 different occasions.

Under Mr. Maccabee’s direction, the United Township High School Symphonic Band has earned a national reputation for excellence, performing at such prestigious events as the Bands of America National Concert Band Festival (4 times), the Illinois Music Educator’s Association All-State Music Convention, the West Illinois University Band Showcase, and on numerous occasions at the prestigious Unniversity of Illinois Super-state Band Festival.  In 1998, Mr. Maccabee became the first recipient of the “Dr. Victor Zajec Award”, given to him in recognition of the United Township High School Symphonic Band performance at the 1998 Midwest International Band and Orchestra Convention.  In 2000, Mr. Maccabee was elected to membership in the prestigious American Bandmaster’s Association.

David is currently a co-Director of Bands at in the Palos Verdes High School in Las Vegas, Nevada and serves as a program consultant.