Timothy Mahr

From Wind Repertory Project
Timothy Mahr


Timothy Mahr (b. 20 March 1956, Reedsburg, Wisc.) is an American composer, conductor and clinician.

Dr. Mahr graduated with two degrees summa cum laude from St. Olaf in 1977 and 1978 (B.M. theory/composition and B.A. music education). In 1983 he received the Master of Arts degree in trombone performance from the University of Iowa, where in 1995 he earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in instrumental conducting.

Since the premiere of Fantasia in G in 1983, Timothy Mahr's compositions have been performed worldwide, recorded, and broadcast. The first recipient within the American Bandmasters Association Commissioning Project, Mahr has composed works for the Music Educators National Conference, the United States Air Force Band, the American School Band Directors Association, and the Kappa Kappa Psi/Tau Beta Sigma National Intercollegiate Band. He received the 1991 ABA/Ostwald Award for his work The Soaring Hawk.

A well-known composer, Mahr has written over 100 works, many of which are published for band and orchestra­­. Beyond The Soaring Hawk, five other works have been finalists in national composition contests. He has received over 70 commissions over the years. He was the subject of interview articles in Clarino: Internationale Zeitschrift für Bläsermusik, The Instrumentalist, and BDGuide, and has authored articles for major music journals. Mahr is a contributor to the text Composers on Composing for Band (2002), and his scholarly and compositional work is cited in Hansen’s The American Wind Band: A Cultural History, Battisti’s The Winds of Change, and Rehrig’s The Heritage Encyclopedia of Band Music

Mahr’s works have been performed at Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall, the Midwest Clinic, the Music Educators National Conference, national conventions of the American Bandmasters Association and the College Band Directors National Association, and numerous state and regional conventions. Many of his works have been broadcast on the Minnesota Public Radio network.

Mahr is a past president of the North Central Division of the College Band Directors National Association and has served on the board of directors of the National Band Association and the Minnesota Band Directors Association. He has led the St. Olaf Band in performance at the national conventions of the American Bandmasters Association (1997), Music Educators National Conference (2005) and College Band Directors National Association (2013). International tours with the St. Olaf Band have taken them throughout Europe, Mexico, Japan, and most recently Australia and New Zealand in 2018. Mahr has appeared in 38 states as a guest conductor and clinician, including leading over twenty all-state bands, and he has also been engaged professionally in Norway, Canada, Mexico, Thailand, Japan, Singapore, New Zealand, and Australia.

He is a recipient of the National Band Association's "Citation of Excellence" and was elected to membership in the American Bandmasters Association in 1993. Mahr was inducted into his alma mater’s Hall of Excellence at La Crosse Central High School in 2001 and was asked to present the commencement address to the 2016 graduating class at St. Olaf. Mahr has nominated and presented two scholars for honorary degrees from St. Olaf College: Frederick Fennell (2003) and David Maslanka (2016).

Dr. Mahr is currently Professor of Music at St. Olaf College, where he conducts the St. Olaf Band and teaches classes in conducting, composition, and music education. He also serves as the conductor of the Minnesota Symphonic Winds and is past president of the North Central Division of the College Band Directors National Association. His conducting career began in Milaca, Minnesota, as an instrumental music teacher at Milaca High School. He was director of bands at the University of Minnesota, Duluth, for ten years and was the founder and conductor of the community-based Twin Ports Wind Ensemble.

Works for Winds


  • Camphouse, Mark, editor. (2002) Composers on Composing for Band. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 213–273.
  • Mahr, Timothy. "Endurance." In Teaching Music through Performance in Band. Volume 6, edit. & comp. by Richard Miles, 616-623. Chicago: GIA Publications, 2007.
  • Miles, Richard B. 2000. Teaching Music Through Performance in Band. Volume 3. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 336.
  • Neil A Kjos Music website
  • Timothy Mahr, personal correspondence, June 2020
  • Timothy Mahr website
  • Timothy Mahr, Wikipedia Accessed 12 October 2016