Denis Swope currently serves as the Director of Bands and Performing Arts Department Chair at Hickman High School. A graduate of the University of Missouri (B.S. Ed. ’89), Mr. Swope taught in Marceline, MO for two years before pursuing his Master’s Degree in Orchestral Conducting (M.M. ’94). Following graduation he accepted a position as Associate Director of Bands with the Moberly Public Schools, where he served for six years before accepting the position of Associate Director of Bands at Hickman High School. Mr. Swope served in this capacity for 13 years. He is currently in his eighth year as Director of Bands at Hickman. His duties have included sharing four concert bands, marching band, conducting the jazz ensemble, and leading the pit orchestra for two musicals each year. During his tenure at Hickman he has also taught Jazz, Pop and Rock, Intro to Music, and two levels of Music Theory. He has also assisted beginning instrument classes at Smithton Middle School.
Mr. Swope is a member of the Missouri Bandmasters Association, currently serving as board member. During his time on the Board for MBA, he has served as Membership Chair, Vice President, President Elect/All State Coordinator, and President. During his presidency he hosted two state summer conventions. Mr. Swope is also a member of Missouri Music Educators Association, National Association for Music Education and Phi Beta Mu. He has also served as the Northeast Missouri Music Educators Association President, and as Vice President for Jazz. He most recently received recognition from Inside Columbia’s Magazine as the Gold Winner in the teacher category of their annual Best of Columbia article.
Phil Wood received Bachelor of Science in Education and Master of Science in Music Education degrees from the University of Missouri. His teaching and performing career has been long and varied: first band director at West Junior High [1962-1967]; trombonist with the 399th Army Band, Ft. Leonard Wood [1967-1970]; assistant band director Hickman High School [1970 to 1973]; first band director at Rock Bridge High School [1973 to 1980]; Coordinator of Elementary Instrumental Music Columbia Public Schools [1980 to 1998]; Adjunct Professor of Music at Lincoln University [2000 to 2016]. He was also band director for the Dorian Music Junior High Summer Band Camp at Luther College, Decorah, Iowa [1984 to 2014].
Mr. Wood directed and arranged music for the Boone County Bassoon Band which had numerous appearances throughout the region including the Mid-West International Band and Orchestra Clinic, twice for the International Double Reed Conference, the Music Educator’s State Conferences in Texas, Iowa, Kansas, and multiple performances for the Missouri Music Educator’s Association Conference. His arrangements for bassoon ensemble are published by Claude T Smith Publications/CL Barnhouse Publications.
Mr. Wood has played trombone in numerous ensembles in the area including the Jim Widner Big Band, the Thespian Hall Concert Band, and the Stephens Symphony. He has served the Missouri Music Educator’s Association as Band Vice-President [1978-1980] and was a member of Missouri Council of the Arts in 1986. He has performed with the Columbia Community Band since 1985 and was appointed as Assistant Director in November 2019.