Timberline Winds

Conductor, Dr. Martin Behnke

Medford, Oregon, USA

1st Place Community Band



Timberline Winds is one of five or so adult community concert bands in the Rogue Valley of Southern Oregon, most of which I have conducted on either a regular or part-time basis since my retirement as Director of Bands from Willamette University in 2005.  Each of the bands serves its own function, but all share players used in Timberline Winds.  The Southern Oregon Concert Band is a fifty piece group that has a history going back over a hundred years to the Shriners Band of the early nineteenth century, and still performs a four-concert season in the Valley.  The Rogue Valley Symphonic Band, with similar size, was organized in the late 1980’s and has also presented a four-concert series in the Valley each year since its founding.  The Ashland City Band is a seventy piece community band that performs an eight-concert series in the Summer to audiences of 500 – 1,000 in the Ashland City Park band shell.  Timberline Winds is the newcomer, a hybrid in its first year, providing an outlet for some of the most experienced players in the Valley.  This year the band has prepared and recorded two programs of my music that will form the basis for a website that is underway, and for a documentary being prepared on community bands in Southern Oregon that will also feature me as a composer/conductor involved in the band-active “State of Jefferson.”  The plan for the band is to go forward preparing music for future performances and recordings.


Following several years of teaching music in the California public schools and in colleges and universities in four other states, Martin Behnke came to Willamette University in 1979 as Director of University Bands, later serving as Chairman of the Department of Music as well. In addition to his teaching background and 12 years as a professional trombonist, Dr. Behnke has maintained involvement throughout his career as a jazz pianist and composer. In 1985 he received an Oregon Arts Commission Individual Artist Fellowship to study composition with Pulitzer Prize winning composer Norman Dello Joio, and in 1999, an Oregon Council for the Humanities Research Grant to present the life and music of Duke Ellington for the Smithsonian traveling exhibit "Beyond Category."

He has performed with Ray Brown, Herbie Mann, Benny Golson, Bill Watrous, Clairdee, and Ken Peplowsky, among others. He is an elected member of the Northwest Bandmasters Association. Dr. Behnke has received numerous commissions for his instrumental and choral compositions, and his music has been published by Alfred Music, University of Northern Colorado Jazz Press, and his own Timberline Music Company. Following his retirement from Willamette University in 2005, Dr. Behnke relocated to Southern Oregon, where for seven more years he directed the jazz ensembles and taught applied jazz piano and improvisation at Southern Oregon University. He continues a full schedule as a composer, adjudicator, guest conductor, and jazz pianist.


Spring, 2017



Jennifer Behnke     



1 – Alena Houghton                                                                                               

1 - Luna Bitzer                                                         

2 – Kyra Hegdahl                                                    

2 - Elora Ormand                                                                 

2 – Adrian Eck                                                                     



Lorin Groshong                                                                                           

Erin Finney                                                                                                  



Pierre Plax                                                                                                   

Catherine Sleppy                                                                                                    



Marilyn Anderson                                                                                       



1 – Marla Kasdorf                                                                                        

1 - Chelsea Villanueva                                          

2 - Don Bieghler                                                                  

2 - Daleta Perone                                                                                          

3 - Ed Wight                                                                                                                      

3 – Grace                                                                                

3 - Alex                                                                                              



Doug MacDonnell                                                                                      



1 - David Sommers                                                                                       

2 –Brittany Brockbank                                                                    



Chris Pearson                                                                                                         

Kate Poet                                                                                                      



Jarod Bile



1 - Randy Scherer                                                                                      

2 - Bruce Dresser      

2 - Eric Osberg                                                                                             

3 - Carol O'Neal                                                                                           

3 – John Ferreira                            


1 - Mike Wraight                                                                                            

2 - Shirley Donnelly                                                                                               

3 - Abraham Murillo

4 -Tyler Vistaunet -                                                                                      



1 - Dave Hoxie                                                                                             

2 - Ken Loftus                                                                                              



Charlie Ter Bush                                                                                         



Jerry Ostemeir                                                                                             



Mike Knox                                                                                                    

Kathy Graves



David Hegdahl

Beckie Pinnock

Jesse Figurate

Strand Hill