BU students plan professional development conference for music education

The 17th annual Da Capo Conference is coming soon!

The Da Capo Conference is an all-day workshop of professional development opportunities for pre-service and current music educators, which is organized annually by the Brandon University Student Music Educators Association. This year’s conference will be held on January 21, 2023 at the Brandon University School of Music.

Abby Petersen

“We are so excited to be bringing Da Capo back to the BU School of Music after two years of online conferences,” said BUSMEA President Abby Petersen.

BUSMEA (Brandon University Student Music Educators Association) is an organization made up of music education students serving music education students. Their goal is to offer professional development opportunities to our members through workshops and other related events.

“Our council has been hard at work to bring in presenters from all across Manitoba to share their knowledge and experiences in music education with our attendees,” Petersen said. “It is great to see music education come alive again after the pandemic, and I am looking forward to a music-filled day of professional development and networking.”

Kevin Doell will be the keynote speaker for this year’s conference, and will present a session titled Tackling the Challenges. This will be Doell’s 17th year at Da Capo as a presenter, and BUSMEA is looking forward to having him back.

Kevin Doell at Da Capo 2015

Doell received his Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Education from Brandon University, and has been very active as a guest conductor and adjudicator. He has conducted the WESMAN Honour Band, Louis Riel Honour Band, Central Honour Band, Parkland Honour Band, St. James Band Camp, Springfield Band Camp and the Pembina Trails Honour Band. He has also conducted the Manitoba Junior and Intermediate Honour Bands.

Along with adjudicating the Saskatoon Music Festival, Morden and Altona Festivals, the Manitoba Beginning Band festival for the last 10 years, the Moose Jaw Festival and the Swan River Festival, Doell has conducted at the International Music Camp and served as divisional Music Consultant for 10 years.

He has presented numerous times at Tempo, at Da Capo, for the Manitoba Education Research Network, the Manitoba Association of School Trustees, as well as the School of Music at both the University of Brandon and University of Manitoba and is a recipient of the Brandon University Distinguished Teacher Award.

Currently, Doell works in Sunrise School Division as the principal of Springfield Collegiate.

Other confirmed presenters include Brandon University professors Dr. Ken Gold, and Dr. Wendy Zander McCallum. Local Brandon music educators Janelle Wilts, Melissa Spraggs, and Erin Dodds will also be presenting, as well as the President of the Manitoba Orff Association, Dawn Muir. Joining Da Capo as roundtable presenters are Shelby Nohr, Carl Manuel, and Amber Dyrda, who will offer their insights into beginning a career as a music educator.

Session topics for this year’s conference include Planning for Learning: Negotiating the Musical, Administrative, and Logistical Elements of Festival Performance, Hands on Hand Drums, Orff Explorations on the Beach, Conducting FUN-damentals, Introduction to Groove and Swing for Young Musicians, Sol-Fun, and Scoop of the Day: Insights for A Successful Start roundtable. In addition to these fantastic sessions, BUSMEA is thrilled to welcome the Brandon Grade 8–9 Wind Ensemble under the direction of Erin Dodds to present a session entitled Demonstrated Learning: A Festival Performance, Adjudication, and Workshop.

All are welcome to attend Da Capo including music educators, music education students, high school students, music administrators, education students and performance students.

BUSMEA is pleased to offer free admission to any high school students wishing to attend, simply fill out the registration form below, and select ‘High School Student.’

Registration forms are available online through Google Forms. Any BUSMEA member can answer questions, or questions can be directed by email to busmea@brandonu.ca. As well, the groups Instagram @bu_busmea is up to date on the Da Capo Conference and other upcoming events!



To receive any BU publication in an alternate format please contact Communications@BrandonU.ca

About BU

Success is built at Brandon University. Our growing, progressive campus welcomes a diverse and inclusive community that combines proud tradition with shared ambition. Through our excellence in teaching, research, and scholarship, we educate students to make a meaningful difference as engaged citizens and leaders. Join us at BrandonU.ca.