Kent State Youth Winds

A new ensemble for high school woodwind, brass and percussion players held at the Glauser School of Music

Questions? Email Us Intent to Audition Form

The Kent State Youth Winds (KSYW) provides local high school and exceptional middle school/Jr. High school wind and percussion players the opportunity to learn music performance techniques from professional artist-teachers from KSU, develop individual playing skills, and perform in a Wind Ensemble with other interested and highly skilled young musicians. Through this experience, students will have the opportunity to enrich and advance their musicianship in a supportive yet challenging environment. In addition to developing artistic skills, students will also have the opportunity to develop non-musical skills including critical thinking, collaboration, communication, and time management.

Who can join?

The Kent State Youth Winds (KSYW) provides an opportunity for talented young musicians to develop their individual talents and musicianship, learn from professional artists/teachers associated with Kent State University, and perform in an auditioned wind ensemble with other skilled players.

Membership is open to 8-12th grade students (Academic Year 2022-2023).

Students must participate in their school music programs to be eligible to audition. This requirement is waived for homeschooled students.

Rehearsals and Concerts

  • The KSYW will take place during the academic year (September - May).
  • Rehearsals will be held on the Kent State University, Kent Campus on Mondays from 7 to 9:15 p.m.
  • The ensemble will present three concerts per year in Kent State University's Cartwright Hall in November, March and May. 

Instruments Accepted

Instruments in the Youth Winds include:

  • Flute
  • Oboe
  • Clarinet
  • Bass Clarinet
  • Bassoon
  • Saxophones (Alto, Tenor, and Baritone) 
  • Trumpet
  • Horn
  • Trombone
  • Euphonium
  • Tuba
  • String Bass
  • Percussion

Kent State Youth Winds trumpets performing

Youth Wind Saxophonists Performing

Entrance into the KSYW is by audition only with limited space.

Auditions for the 22-23 Season will be held in person.

Audition Requirements for Winds, Brass and Percussion

For the audition please prepare your

  • (1) major scales up to 3 flats and 3 sharps and the chromatic scale demonstrating your range -AND-
  • (2) prepared excerpts for your instrument found by clicking here.

Acceptance and Registration

  • Acceptance emails will be sent by June 1.
  • After you're accepted, you will fill out the registration form and parent forms.

Tuition and Scholarships

  • Tuition is $250 for the year.
  • A limited number of need-based scholarships may be available. 


Wendy K. Matthews Headshot
Dr. Wendy K. Matthews - Associate Professor of Music Education and Director of Bands, Kent State University 

Wendy K. Matthews is Director of Bands and Associate Professor of Music Education at Kent State University. At Kent State, she leads the Wind Ensemble and teaches a variety of undergraduate and graduate music education courses. Dr. Matthews is in demand throughout the world as a guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator.

Sara Kois Headshot
Ms. Sarah Kois - Faculty and Ensemble Administrator, Kent State Youth Winds 

Sarah Kois is the Band Director at Streetsboro High School and Henry Defer Intermediate School in Streetsboro, Ohio. Her teaching responsibilities include directing the 5th-grade band, 9-12 concert band, marching band, and pep band. She is actively interested in researching and promoting the music of underrepresented composers.

Garrett Doty Headshot
Mr. Garrett Doty - Band Director, Stanton Middle School, Kent, Ohio

Garrett Doty is the Band Director at Stanton Middle School in Kent, Ohio. His teaching responsibilities include directing the 6th, 7th, and 8th-grade bands. He is active in the Ohio Music Education Association, serving as an adjudicator, host for Junior High Solo and Ensemble, and is an OMEA District 6 Past President.

Board of Directors

  • Mr. Garrett Doty - Band Director, Stanton Middle School, Kent, Ohio
  • Dr. Joanna Hersey - Professor, Tuba, University of North Carolina-Pembroke, North Carolina
  • Ms. Sarah Kois - Faculty and Ensemble Administrator, Kent State Youth Winds, Kent, Ohio
  • Mr. Anthony Maiello - Professor of Music, George Mason University, Virginia
  • Dr. Wendy K. Matthews - Associate Professor of Music Education and Director of Bands, Kent State University, Kent, Ohio
  • Dr. Kent McWilliams - Director, Glauser School of Music, Kent State University, Kent, Ohio
  • Dr. John Roebke - Director of Bands, Roosevelt High School, Kent, Ohio

Kent State youth Winds
Youth Winds percussionist performing

Please note: The best way to reach someone currently is by email due to Covid-19 precautions resulting in less staff in the GSOM building. 

Music Office

  • 330-672-2172


Kent State University
Glauser School of Music
Center for the Performing Arts
1325 Theatre Drive
Kent, OH 44242


Kent State Youth Winds