High School Honor Band

Nominations Now Open!

October 27, 2023 |

We are thrilled to invite you to nominate your students for the Minnesota State University, Mankato High School Honor Band to be held Friday, January 26, 2024 on the campus of Minnesota State, Mankato.

The ensemble is open to all deserving students in grades 10-12. The day will include full ensemble rehearsals, side-by-side rehearsals with university students, performances by Minnesota State, Mankato instrumental ensembles, and clinics with the applied faculty and music majors.

Student Nominations

Each director is encouraged to submit up to six students on any wind or percussion instrument, as well as piano and string bass. Nomination forms are due by Friday, December 1, 2024. Please rank your students based on your own criteria. Make sure you list each student’s full name and their specific instrument, i.e., Alto Saxophone, Bass Clarinet, Treble Clef Baritone, including areas of strength for your Percussionists.

We will send out one electronic folder including each selection of music by student approximately four weeks prior to the event. Every school that submits a nomination form will be represented on stage. Please make sure to contact us if you do not receive a confirmation email acknowledging your student nominations.

Nominations are now OPEN:

Submit your Nominations


The High School Honor Band will include approximately 125 musicians and will be conducted by Dr. Amy K. Roisum Foley, Director of Bands, and Prof. Mike Thursby, Director of Athletic Bands and Percussion Studio.

Amy K. Roisum Foley is currently in her 17th year as the Director of Bands and Professor of Music at Minnesota State University, Mankato where she administrates and conducts the concert bands and chamber ensembles. Her teaching also includes graduate and undergraduate conducting, form and analysis, instrumental music education, and applied clarinet. Roisum Foley has served as a guest conductor and clinician for honor bands and festivals in the US, Canada, and Europe. Roisum Foley received her Bachelor of Music in Music Education and Performance from St. Olaf College, her Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of St. Thomas Aquinas, and her Doctor of Philosophy in Music Education and Wind Band Conducting from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Roisum Foley also enjoys building, fitting, and all things conducting batons.

Michael Thursby is the Director of Athletic Bands and Percussion at the Minnesota State University, Mankato where he teaches courses in percussion, and music education, assists with the MN State Mankato Instrumental Ensembles, and is Director of the Maverick ‘Machine’ Athletic Bands. Thursby's formal training included undergraduate studies at the University of Iowa where he earned his B.M. in Percussion Performance and Music Education. In 2010, he earned a Master of Music degree from the University of Northern Iowa. His primary conducting teachers were Dr. Myron Welch, Dr. Ronald Johnson, and Dr. Rebecca Burkhardt. He is a member of the College Band Directors National Association, National Association for Music Education, Minnesota Band Directors Association, Minnesota Music Educators Association, and the Percussive Arts Society.


The cost of registration is $30 per student for the honor band. Students will receive the musical services of the conductor, lunch on campus, a reception following the concert, and a certificate. The concert is free of charge. Please let us know if your students require financial assistance. We would not want any student to miss this special day due to financial hardship.


January 26, 2024

8:00-8:30 Registration (Centennial Student Union Ballroom)
8:30 Welcome (Centennial Student Union Ballroom)
8:45-10:00 Rehearsal (Centennial Student Union Ballroom)
10:00-10:10 Break
10:10-10:30 Student Workshop 1: Conducting 101/Hands-on Percussion
10:40-12:00 Rehearsal 2 (CSU Ballroom)
12:00-12:45 Lunch at Carkoski Commons
12:45-1:45 Sectionals
2:00-2:20 Student Workshop 2: Hands-on Percussion/ Conducting 101
2:20-2:30 Break—Move Coats and Cases to Classrooms
2:30-3:30 Rehearsal 3
3:30-4:15 Joint rehearsal with Wind Ensemble
4:30-5:30 Concert (CSU Ballroom)
5:30-6:00 Reception (CSU Ballroom)

Teacher Workshops

We will host an experienced teacher panel for our instrumental music education majors from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. on the day of the event. If you are interested in sharing your experiences and perspectives with our prospective music teachers, please let us know. In the past, this has been a very rewarding experience for the teachers and for the students.

Conflicts or Inclement Weather

Students should clear the entire day for rehearsals and the performance. If a conflict should develop, please contact us as soon as possible so that we can contact an alternate nominee. If there is inclement weather on the day of the event, all ensemble directors will be notified by 6 am via cell phone and email. You can contact Dr. Roisum Foley directly by cell phone at 612-360-7440 should you have any questions or concerns.