Dorian experiences begin in Middle SchoolStudents as young as 6th grade are welcome at the summer Camps and Keyboard Festival. Other Festivals require high school status and nomination by school directors.
Dorian Summer Camp Ensemble OptionsBands, choirs and orchestras are all available to campers. Participation in at least one is required, but multiple participation is allowed and encouraged.
Honor Festivals Taken to the Next LevelThe typical “honor” festivals are raised to a higher level during the Dorian Festivals. Dr. Allen Hightower led a choir of 1,100, from 280 schools, during the 2012 Dorian Vocal Festival.
Students Work With Exceptional DirectorsStudents work with exceptional directors. Luther music faculty members lead all the Festivals, and provide most of the faculty for the Summer Camps. Dr. Andrew Last conducted the choirs at both Camps in 2013.
More Than Music at Dorian Summer CampsThese students are working on a beginning exercise in the Acting class, one of the many musical and non-musical options available to Dorian Campers each year.
Dorian Festivals and Summer Camps
Dorian Festival History
In 1949, the Dorian Festivals began when Professor Weston Noble invited directors from just over 20 schools in the region to each bring a few selected band students to the Luther campus for a two-day honor band festival. The event was called the Dorian Band Festival. A vocal festival was added in 1950, and the family of Dorian Festivals and Camps has been growing in scope and participation ever since. Well over 90,000 students have shared in a Dorian musical experience since the festivals were started.
Why the name “Dorian”? The ancient Greeks built their music around a series of modes, or scales, one of which was the Dorian mode. The students who formed the Dorian Singing Society at Luther College took the name of this scale as the name for their organization when they started the ensemble shortly after the college was founded in 1861.
Luther College offers five Dorian Festivals:
Luther also offers two music camps each year include Middle School and Senior High. Hundreds of junior and senior high school students from across the Midwest come to Luther to study with Luther College faculty and perform in quality ensembles.