Dr. John Knight is professor of Conducting and Ensembles and Music Education at Oberlin Conservatory, Oberlin, Ohio. He has been a member of the Conservatory faculty since 1978 and received his baccalaureate degree from the University of Central Arkansas and the master’s and doctoral degrees from Louisiana State University. He is a guest conductor of professional bands and orchestra, all state and honor ensembles throughout the nation, Europe and Asia.
At the Oberlin Conservatory he was awarded numerous teaching grants to study wind pedagogy with members of the Chicago Symphony and has been the recipient of the H.H. Powers travel grant to visit the major music conservatories of West Germany, Italy, Holland, England, Japan and China where he presented lectures and workshops concerning the teaching of music education and conducting in the United States.
At the Parma Conservatory in Italy, Dr. Knight did extensive research on the conducting techniques of Arturo Toscanini. In England, he researched the wind music of Percy Grainger, Gustav Holst, and Ralph Vaughan Williams. Three times he has been visiting professor of conducting at Salford University and the Birmingham Conservatory, England where he was guest conductor of wind bands, brass bands, and guest conductor of the Birmingham Conservatory Orchestra.
Dr. Knight is consulting editor to The Instrumentalist Magazine where he has had over 100 published articles on conducting. For his articles he received the Citation of Excellence for creative writing from the Educational Press Association of America. Currently he is writing two conducting textbooks for teachers of band and orchestra.
His band textbook is devoted to the conducting pedagogy needed for the interpretation of the major concert band repertoire and his orchestra textbook, Golden Age of Conductors will compare the interpretive practices among the great conductors of the past. He is also co-author of the popular textbook “Prelude to Music Education,” published by Prentice Hall which is used in college classrooms throughout the nation.
Oberlin’s College Community Winds, directed by Dr. Knight, performed the world premier of Toccata in E by Vaclav Nelhybel, which was dedicated to Dr. Knight and the Oberlin College Band.