Chris Gleason is an instrumental music educator at Patrick Marsh Middle School in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin. He is the 2017 Wisconsin Middle School Teacher of the Year, a finalist for the 2017 National Teacher of the Year, and a semifinalist for the 2017 GRAMMY Music Educator Award. Mr. Gleason earned his BME at UW-Eau Claire in 1997 and his master’s degree from UW-LaCrosse in 2002. He has taught band in the East Troy School District and the LaCrosse School District. Mr. Gleason’s bands have performed at the Milwaukee Art Museum, Wisconsin State Capitol Rotunda, the “New Wisconsin Promise Conference,” and the 2006 and 2009 Wisconsin State Music Conferences. The Patrick Marsh Middle School Band has commissioned composers such as Samuel R. Hazo (Blue and Green Music -2009), Brian Balmages (Sun Cycles – 2012), Michael Sweeney (Particles – 2013), Erik Morales (One Giant Leap – 2014), John Mackey (Lightning Field – 2015), Alex Shapiro (Rock Music- 2016), Brian Balmages (Twittering Machine – 2017), and Andrew Boysen, Jr. (TBA – 2018).
In 1992 Mr. Gleason was selected as the Wisconsin Governor’s Scholar to Interlochen Arts Camp in Interlochen, Michigan. Mr. Gleason has performed professionally at Disneyland, Valleyfair, and the Mall of America. He has been guest conductor of numerous camps and festivals including the Tarleton Invitational Band Festival (Texas), National Band Association – Wisconsin Chapter Junior High All-State Band, Tri-State Honors Band, UW-Milwaukee Honors Band, UW-Whitewater Band Camp, and numerous regional honor bands across Wisconsin and Illinois. He is the past-chair of the Wisconsin Comprehensive Musicianship through Performance (CMP) Committee and the Wisconsin State Middle Level Honors Band.
Currently, he is chair of the Wisconsin State Middle Level Honors Project. He has taught CMP Workshops at VanderCook College of Music, the Los Angeles Unified School District in California, The NAfME National In-Service Conference, numerous school districts in the Midwest, and recently in Hong Kong. He has presented clinics at the Minnesota, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, and Wisconsin State Music Conventions. Mr. Gleason is the recent recipient of the Melvin F. Pontious Sparks in Music Education Award (2016), Michael G. George Distinguished Service Award (2016), and the Vi Miller Award for Excellence (2013) by Dane Arts. He also had a feature interview in the March 2015 Instrumentalist Magazine. Mr. Gleason is the founder and organizer of the Band Festival at the Kalahari in Wisconsin Dells that has to date inspired more than 23,500 young musicians. Mr. Gleason is a member of NBA, WMEA, and NAfME.