MISSION AND HISTORY
The Colorado Wind Ensemble’s mission is to provide opportunities for musicians to create, and audiences to experience, exceptional live performances of the rich and varied genres of music for woodwinds, brass, and percussion.
The CWE will begin its 39th season in the fall of 2021, led by our conductor and musical director Dr. David Kish, who joined our organization in 2015. Dr. Kish is also Director of Bands and Professor of Music at Metropolitan State University of Denver.
The Colorado Wind Ensemble was founded in 1983 by Steve Canton, Jacky Canton, and Conductor Emerita Martha E. Cox, who led the group for 22 seasons. From 2004 to 2014, we were led by conductor and musical director Dr. Matthew J. Roeder, now our Conductor Laureate. The CWE is grateful for the vision and hard work that established this wonderful symphony of woodwinds, brass, and percussion!
While the majority of our formal concert series is performed at the King Center Concert Hall on Auraria Campus in downtown Denver, the CWE’s performs throughout the Denver metropolitan area. CWE joined in a partnership with Metropolitan State University of Denver in 2015 as an “artist in residence.” The partnership has benefited both parties, and qualified music students at MSUD have the opportunity to play with CWE on a regular basis during the formal concert season.
The CWE enjoys a rich history of collaboration with other performing arts organizations, including the Boston Brass, the Voices West Chorale, Rocky Mountain Brassworks, Hannah Kahn Dance Company, Fiesta Colorado Dance Company, the Queen City Jazz Band, the Denver Brass, the Pan Jumbies, Stories on Stage, the Arvada Chorale, the Cherry Creek Chorale, and many others.
The CWE is proud to feature wonderful guest soloists on a regular basis, including clarinetist Richard Stoltzman, pianist Jooeun Pak, trumpeters Brian Shaw and Mike Hengst, trombonist Christopher Bill, and soprano Michelle Diggs Thompson . We also feature guest conductors such as Dr. Richard Mayne, and Dr. Ray Cramer and welcomed attendance by guest composers such as Omar Thomas, Scott McAllister, and renowned nature photographer John Fielder.
The CWE regularly works with students in school programs, including Denver Public Schools, Addenbrooke Classical Academy, Mountain Vista High School, ThunderRidge High School, Regis High School, and the Continental League Honor Band. CWE musicians have worked with students in the Colorado Honor Band program for many years. The CWE also provides students with easy access to concerts through our reduced-price ticket program