Mike Leckrone

Former Professor of Music and Director of Bands

College of Letters and Science | Mead Witter School of Music

Michael Leckrone is the former Director of the Marching Band and Director of Bands at the University of Wisconsin. A native of Indiana, Mr. Leckrone received his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from Butler University in Indianapolis and has continued his studies at the doctoral level at Indiana University. Before coming to Wisconsin he taught at his alma mater, where he developed one of the finest marching bands in the Midwest. He is in constant demand as a clinician, guest conductor and adjudicator for concert and marching bands throughout the United States and Canada, and his experience also includes considerable professional work as an arranger, composer and performer.

Talks:

  • When Mike Leckrone became director of the Wisconsin Marching Band, interest in the program was low. By creating a new, demanding marching style, “stop at the top”, a pre-game run on, and the development of the band’s “fifth quarter” post-game performances, he emphasized showmanship and turned the program around. Mike will share an overview, including funny anecdotes and stories, regarding the evolution of “The greatest band in the land.” He will discuss his history as an educator, leader and motivator, and explain the journey of development of the UW Spring Band Concert from a modest performance for 400 loyal fans in 1975, to a three night extravaganza drawing in more than 35,000 people.

  • How did American pop music influence former Badger Marching Band Director Mike Leckrone? In this talk, he will discuss the history of the pop/rock music genre from early blues and country, to more sophisticated popular music of today.

  • Former Badger Marching Band Director Mike Leckrone shares his insights and love for jazz in this talk. He will discuss the development of jazz music through the early 1950’s, and some of the most important figures during this time.

  • In this talk, Mike will showcase the work of iconic singers and musicians of the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s including Judy Garland, Louis Armstrong, Bing Crosby, Fred Astaire and Frank Sinatra. Learn how these performers helped shape the world of popular music as we know it today, and how UW Marching Band “showmanship” was inspired by these musical legends.

Videos: