Col. Timothy J. Holtan

Col. Timothy J. Holtan

Self Employed


In February of 2017, Col. Timothy J. Holtan relinquished command of The U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own,” after serving 28 ½ years as an Army Bands officer. He holds the distinction of being the first officer to command all three of the Army’s premier bands.

He is a native of Bismarck, North Dakota, and a former school music educator in Montana. An active conductor, adjudicator and clinician, Col. Holtan has presented concerts and clinics in all 50 states, Canada, Japan, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Europe.

Col. Holtan's other military assignments include: Commander of the Musical Ambassadors of the Army, The U.S. Army Field Band; Commandant, U.S. Army School of Music, Virginia Beach, VA, where he served as the primary Proponent for all 100 Army Bands, and oversaw the training of over 500 professional musicians annually; 22nd Leader of the United States Military Academy Band, West Point, NY; Deputy Commander of The U.S. Army Field Band; Department of the Army Staff Bands Officer; tours as Commander and Executive Officer of the U.S. Continental Army Band, Fort Monroe, Virginia; and Executive Officer of the U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own,” Washington, D.C., where he served in overlapping capacities as Director of the Ceremonial Band, Brass Band, Chorale and Chorus.

In 2000, Col. Holtan was selected for the Army's "Training with Industry" program. He served as the Director of Operations and Associate Conductor of the Dallas Winds, while concurrently pursuing doctoral studies at the University of North Texas. Col. Holtan holds music education degrees from Montana State University and the University of Montana, and has pursued additional conducting studies with Elizabeth Green, H. Robert Reynolds, John Paynter, Larry Rachleff, Jerry Junkin and Eugene Corporon.

Col. Holtan’s ensembles have been seen on many nationally televised broadcasts and diverse stages such as the Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, DAR Constitution Hall, Mormon Tabernacle, Myerson Symphony Center and Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. Under his leadership and after a 44-year absence, the West Point Band reestablished a partnership with the New York Philharmonic, which resulted in five Lincoln Center joint performances. Col. Holtan also led the West Point Band in the Emmy-nominated “Marina at West Point” PBS television production that has reached over 180 million viewers.

Col. Holtan has been honored as Alumnus of the Year by Bismarck (North Dakota) State College and was inducted into the Bismarck High School Hall of Fame. Col. Holtan served for twelve years on the National Band Association Board of Directors and has received multiple Citations of Excellence. In 2011, he was the University of Montana’s School of Visual and Performing Arts “Odyssey of the Stars” honoree and was inducted into their Hall of Honor. Col. Holtan also holds membership in the prestigious American Bandmasters Association and serves on the Advisory Committee to the Midwest Clinic. He is married to Laurie Matheson Holtan and they have two daughters, Elizabeth and Katherine.

  Session Titles

Conducting Workshop


Coaching newer teachers in the 4-8 years experience range by using a live ensemble and audience and musician participation.

Effective Communication From the Podium


A discussion of some key techniques I have used: preparation, setting the environment, rehearsal technique, and remembering to feed your soul.

Rehearsal Tuneup


What is the dynamic of your rehearsal room? A hands-on masterclass with conductor and ensemble to pursue: quality of sound, focused listening, power through precision - not volume, student/musician responsibilities, and rehearsal planning.

What Marches Can DO for You and Your Program


A discussion of how this American Wind Band foundational music form can serve as an effective teaching vehicle. The clinic covers background, resources, selection, and rehearsal goals/techniques.

Why Your Sons and Daughters Benefit From Music


A parent-centric discussion of the broad benefits of being in music ensembles, how those experiences help round out an education, and music helps to prepare students for success in most any career field.