Conductor: Dr. Norman Wika
Dr. Norman Wika currently serves as the Director of Bands at Saginaw Valley State University, where he directs the Cardinal Marching Band and conducts the Wind Ensemble and Concert Band. Additionally, he teaches conducting and music theory. Prior to joining the faculty at SVSU, Dr. Wika taught at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, OK and Providence College in Providence, RI. He holds a Doctor of Musical Arts in Conducting and a Master of Music in Music Education from the University of Connecticut, where he conducted the Wind Ensemble and Orchestra. He holds a Bachelor of Music in Music Education from the University of Miami. Prior to pursuing graduate studies, Dr. Wika was a high school band director in the south Florida area.
Dr. Wika has presented research at the Texas Music Educators Association Conference, the Michigan Music Conference, and the College Music Society. He has made conducting appearances with the Tulsa Camerata and the Classic Brass Band, Willimantic, CT. He is also an active trombone player, giving recitals and appearing with ensembles such as the Tulsa Symphony and the Saginaw Bay Symphony Orchestra.
Associate Conductor: Karen Welser
Karen’s love for music started in her home as a young child with her mother being the church choir director and father singing for over 50 years.
Karen would like to recognize Mr. Greg Smokovitz, retired director of Bullock Creek High School Band. He saw potential in her and invited her to come to band camp as a flute coach in 2006. His encouragement and guidance started the journey to becoming a paraprofessional assisting students in band class, a private flute teacher, and ultimately the director of the Mid Michigan Brass Band.