Founder & Past Conductor & Artistic Director
Wisconsin Symphonic Winds Artistic Director and Conductor since inception, Dr. Rob McWilliams is an internationally accomplished musician, conductor, and educator born and raised in Melbourne, Australia. A United States resident since 1991, Dr. McWilliams holds a Ph. D. in Music from the University of Minnesota, a Master's degree in Instrumental Conducting from Florida State University, and a Bachelor's degree in Music Education from the University of Melbourne.
As a performing artist on trumpet and keyboard Dr. McWilliams has extensive performing experience with a number of domestic and international symphonic and jazz ensembles. An experienced and popular guest conductor and musician, he has traveled and worked extensively with professional and amateur student and adult groups. He has also served as guest conductor and clinician in all states of Australia and many states in the U.S. where he has worked with ensembles at the national, state, and regional levels. Internationally, Dr. McWilliams has conducted and presented at major music conferences in Japan, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom, Singapore, and Europe including performances at conferences of the World Association of Symphonic Bands & Ensembles. Dr. McWilliams has also been a regular conductor for the Australian Wind Orchestra from its inception in 1990 and has a recording with this group issued on the Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra label.
Dr. McWilliams has been a keynote presenter at state and national conferences of the Australian Band and Orchestra Directors' Association, the Australian Society of Music Educators and has served as an invited conducting clinician and adjudicator for the Singapore Ministry of Education. In the United States he has presented at major music conferences and has been published in a number of professional publications including the Journal of Band Research and Teaching Music Through Performance in Band.
Currently an Associate Professor of Music and Director of Bands and Instrumental Music Education at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, Dr. McWilliams conducts the Wind Ensemble and Symphonic Band and teaches courses in instrumental music education, conducting, and jazz.