Luther alumnus Paul Gulsvig named the recipient of the 2018 Weston Noble Award
Luther College alumnus Paul Gulsvig of St. Paul, Minnesota, is the recipient of the 2018 Weston Noble Award.
Gulsvig will be presented the award at the Luther Homecoming concert 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 28, in the Center for Faith and Life Main Hall. The Noble Award is one of four awards announced during the concert.
Weston Noble was a member of the Luther music faculty and was known worldwide as the conductor of the Luther College Nordic Choir from 1948-2005 and the Luther College Concert Band from 1948-73. He also was a guest conductor for more than 900 all-state bands, orchestras, choirs and festivals. Prior to his death in 2016, Noble was the Johnson Professor Emeritus of Music at Luther.
Established in 2004, the Noble Award recognizes music educators who honor and continue Weston Noble’s legacy.
A 1973 graduate of Luther, Gulsvig earned a Bachelor of Arts in music. For the past 44 years, he’s been involved in choral education. He was the choral director at Onalaska High School in Onalaska, Wisconsin, from 1979-2006, where he transformed a small swing choir into a nationally-recognized program. From 1985-2006, the Hilltoppers swing choir won grand championships in 16 cities and seven states and won the national championships in 2004 and 2006. In 1986, Gulsvig started the Parent-Support Group, which has raised more than $1 million to support choral trips around the country.
In 2016, Gulsvig was awarded the “Mousker” award by the Disney Corporation Foundation, one of only a few educators to ever receive the award. He also was inducted into the Onalaska High School Alumni Association Wall of Excellence in 2017.
Since retiring from teaching, Gulsvig began a career with More Than Music, a company he founded which works to bring music to students of all ages from elementary to graduate school. He’s served as a retreat presenter, show doctor, motivational speaker and held leadership workshops and in-service workshops.
Gulsvig and his wife, Jane (Nothnagel) Gulsvig, class of 1972, have three children, all with degrees in music. Amy is a music educator in Florida. Jennifer, class of 2002, is a freelance music educator, specializing in competitive show choir programs. Kurt, class of 2007, works with Movement Talent Agency, based in Hollywood, California.
Luther is home to one of the largest collegiate music programs in the nation, with five choirs, three orchestras, three bands, two jazz bands and more than 800 student musicians. Luther students participate in large ensembles, faculty-coached chamber groups, private lessons and master classes. Nearly 275 music majors study music theory, ear training, history, education, composition, jazz, church music and performance.