Kirk D. Moss, PhD

Kirk D. Moss, PhD

Kirk D. Moss, PhD, serves as Dean of the College of Arts & Humanities and Professor and Chair of the Department of Music & Theatre at University of Northwestern – St. Paul, where he received the 2021 Faculty Award for Excellence in Scholarship. He is a past national president of the American String Teachers Association, five times chaired the ASTA National Orchestra Festival, and held office on ASTA’s Executive Board. He has coauthored Sound Innovations series method books for Alfred Music, as well as numerous string orchestra arrangements. Moss has appeared as a guest conductor, clinician, or adjudicator in nearly forty states and Australia. The University of Florida School of Music awarded him an Alumni Outstanding Achievement Award, and he has received six ASTA National Citation for Leadership & Merit awards. With twelve years of experience teaching elementary, middle, and high school orchestras, groups under his direction have earned distinction at state, national, and international events. One of his former high schools honors him by annually awarding a college string scholarship in his name. Moss holds a PhD in Music Education, conducting emphasis, from University of Florida (Gainesville) where his mentors included Raymond Chobaz, Timothy Brophy, and Russell Robinson. He received a Master of Music degree, with a cognate in string pedagogy, from University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music as a graduate teaching assistant for Gerald Doan and a Bachelor of Music degree, with high distinction, from University of Michigan under the guidance of Robert Culver. Kirk and his wife, Deb, celebrate more than thirty years of marriage and have three children: Bethany, Luke, and Lydia.

Clinic Offerings

Band & Orchestra Planning and Programming: Begin with the End in Mind

Design the instrumental music program for success with a cornerstone of master teaching, blueprint for organization and repertoire, and facilities and instruments as raw materials. Thrive in the role of architect and project manager to develop a model music program for students.


Creative Warm-Ups for Strings

Gain fresh warm-up ideas to improve intonation, rhythm, bowing, and improvisation in string orchestra or private studio settings. Use teaching tools to build community. Bring an instrument and play along!


Creativity is Contagious for Strings

Gain fresh ideas on developing creative musicianship within your string students through non-theory and theory-based creativity and improvisation exercises and routines aligned to the ASTA Curriculum. From Western to non-Western traditions to distinct styles like classical, jazz, Latin, and rock, practice sequential, creative, steps toward improvising and composing music. Experience ASTA's Creative Musicianship curriculum in action!


Expressive Conducting

Gesture rehab for busy students and teachers. Give thought to your conducting gestures, improve your baton technique, and hear the results on Monday morning.


Fun in Fundamentals for Strings

Keep students motivated through teaching exercises and rote activities that put "fun" in the fundamentals of string playing. Bring an instrument and have fun!


Involving School Band & Orchestra Parents: How to Have Help and Money

Involving band and orchestra parents yields positive results, both in the lives of our students, and in the quality of the program. Often, we simply need to ask!


Recruiting Instrumental Music Students

Why do instrumental music students join and stay in band and orchestra programs? Compare research findings, examine the three phases of recruiting and retention, analyze your situation and propose solutions. Get ready for more students!


Sound Innovations: A Comprehensive Curriculum

The most comprehensive method available; now with five levels each for concert band and string orchestra, three for guitar, one for percussion, and one for leadership.


String Pedagogy from Galamian, Dounis, Suzuki, and Rolland to You

Explore the pedagogical roots of your string teaching tree. Apply influences of the masters in your orchestra classroom.


Teaching Intonation Creatively for String Orchestra

Discover specific strategies to refine intonation in string orchestra or private studio settings. Participants will form a lab orchestra to experience innovative techniques and exercises within an expressive and musical context.


Teaching String Techniques Has Never Been So Easy

Gain ideas on how to improve the sound of your middle or high school string ensemble through the use of exercises that develop and expand technique.

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