Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

M.M. in Music



First Advisor

Alan L. Spurgeon

Second Advisor

Michael Worthy

Third Advisor

Thomas Peattie

Relational Format



This study focuses on band music preference, and specifically, how this preference is affected by participation in band. With this knowledge I argue that band directors can select repertoire that both challenges and engages students while still being enjoyable to perform. Despite the existence of studies that consider the many factors that affect music preference, no study has focused exclusively on band music, which remains a vital part of music education in the United States. Students from three high schools rated ten 30-second examples of concert music on a Likert-type scale. I placed these musical examples into five self-defined categories: Harmoniemusik wind pieces, post-tonal wind pieces, publisher-influenced band pieces, contemporary band pieces from within the past fifty years, and British band classics. The results suggest that participation in band has varying influences on music preference. Preference scores for three categories dropped through participation in high school band, while preference scores for two categories rose. Familiarity seems to be the single biggest contributing factor that influences music preference, and future research needs to be conducted in that area.



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