Musicians & Music

Meet the extraordinary men and women of Northshore Concert Band who have dedicated their lives to making music!


traci bowering2

Traci Bowering plays the Clarinet and has been with the Northshore Concert Band since 1991. She is a Band Director and lives in Skokie, Illinois. Traci is also the Northshore Concert Band annual Lifetime of Music event coordinator.

When and why did you start playing? I started playing in 4th grade. I wanted to join because my brother, who is a year older than me, played in band.

What do you enjoy most about playing? I really enjoy the time to clear my head of other responsibilities and just “feel” the music.

Do you have a favorite musical memory? In high school, I got to sit next to John Bruce Yeh for a special concert we played. He is amazing!

What are your musical influences? I was convinced that I hated classical music, until I joined orchestra in high school and played Dvorak’s New World Symphony. That was a big turning point for me.

Who was your most influential music teacher? There were so many! I may have learned the most from my high school choral director, Cheryl Frazes Hill.

Does anyone in your family play music? My parents both played piano, back in the day, but we didn’t have a piano growing up. Now, my husband and my daughter both play the euphonium, and my son and I both play the clarinet.

What’s on your iPod? Is it bad that I don’t have one?

Do you have any advice for young musicians? Don’t give up! I’ve never heard anyone say, “I wish my parents had let me quit playing!”. It is always, “I wish my parents hadn’t let me quit!”

What makes performing with Northshore Concert Band different than performing with other groups? The level of musicianship is incredible, but I’ve stayed so long because of the friendships, networking, and opportunities afforded to us!

List three words to describe the Northshore Concert Band. Professional. Musical. Family.

Please add anything else that you would like our readers to know about you.  I grew up in the North Suburbs, but did not know about the Northshore Band until I was a student at St. Olaf College in MN. I was filling in parts at a conducting symposium and John Paynter was the clinician. Every other sentence he said included something about the Northshore Band. I spoke with him afterwards, came and played for the rest of the summer, auditioned for ‘real’ in the fall, and the rest is history!


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