Auditions and Admissions
Woodwind and Brass
Programs of Study
UMSL Opera Theatre
Winners and Judges
Workshops and Outreach
UMSL School of Fine and Performing Arts
Chair, Department of Music
Associate Teaching Professor, Music Education
Director of Bands
Gary W. Brandes serves as Teaching Professor of Music, Director of Bands at the University of Missouri-St. Louis and Chair of the Department of Music. At UMSL he conducts the University Wind Ensemble, teaches undergraduate Conducting I & II, Instrumental Literature and supervises student teachers. Graduate level courses include Literature, Methods and Conducting. Prior to his appointment at the University of Missouri-St. Louis in 2006, Brandes taught for 28 years in Missouri public schools most recently as Director of Bands at Fort Zumwalt South High School. Prior to South High he taught at Fort Zumwalt North High School, Hazelwood East High School and Warren County R-II, Wright City. He grew up in Wright City, Missouri and attended the University of Missouri-St. Louis graduating with a Bachelor of Music Education Degree, Instrumental and Vocal, in 1978. A Master Degree in Conducting was completed in 1992 from the University of Missouri-Columbia. While completing his Masters he was honored to serve as a graduate assistant to the University Bands. As a trombonist he is presently a member of the St. Louis Wind Symphony and the St. Louis Low Brass Collective and a former member of the Gateway City Big Band, Meramec Monday Night Jazz Band and the Mid Rivers Brass Quintet. Beginning in 2016 he is honored to serve as the Associate Conductor for the St. Louis Wind Symphony. Brandes served as the College/University Vice President for Missouri Music Educators Association 2010-12, President-Elect 2012-14, MMEA President 2014-16, and currently serves as Past President.
Mr. Brandes was honored 1998 with the Merit Award in Music Education from St. Louis Metro Music Educators Association and in 2000 St. Louis Metro recognized Brandes as its Outstanding Music Educator and the Metro Eight Hall of Fame award in 2015. Brandes was selected as Fort Zumwalt’s Teacher of the Year in 2003, and received the Veterans of Foreign Wars National Citizenship Teacher Award in 2004. In 2004 Brandes was named to Marquis Who’s Who in America. In 2012 he was honored to receive the Missouri Association for Jazz Education Service Award.
Professional affiliations include NAfME, MMEA, MBA, Phi Beta Mu and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia. Brandes lives in St. Peters, MO, with wife Brenda and daughter Erin.