Director of Bands

Edward Higgins, D.M.A.
Associate Professor of Music

Wind Ensembles Coordinator

Education: B.M. The Juilliard School; B.F.A. California Institute of the Arts; M.M. The Juilliard School; D.M.A. University of Missouri Kansas City; Primary conducting studies; Gary W. Hill and Robert Halseth; Coaching includes- Frederick Fennell, H. Robert Reynolds, and Allan MacMurray.

ProfileOne of the most highly sought after conductors of the Pacific Northwest, Dr. Edward Higgins has spent his musical career imparting the joys of music as a performer, educator, and conductor.  

Dr. Higgins began his versatile performance career with the Spoleto Festival Orchestra in Spoleto, Italy, where he served as Principal Trumpet on such works as the Grammy-winning recording of Samuel Barber’s Antony and Cleopatra.  After two seasons Dr. Higgins went on to hold the Principal Trumpet position of the Sacramento Symphony.  He achieved comparable accolades in the Midwest as a professional tubist, holding principal positions in the La Crosse Symphony and St. Joseph Symphony Orchestras.

His educational career has seen similar successes with brass pedagogy and conducting positions at: University of California Davis, California State University Sacramento, Winona State University in Minnesota, and Washburn University in Kansas. Dr. Higgins also spent time teaching younger students in the public schools of Sacramento and Stockton, California.

As an active conductor, he founded the Oregon Conductor’s Symposium and was a featured guest with the Portland Festival Orchestra. Most recently, Dr. Higgins has taken his baton worldwide -- appearing in such diverse locales as New York’s La Guardia School of the Performing Arts (featured in “Fame”) and the Conservatory of Music in Guangzhou, China. 

On the concert stage, Higgins has collaborated with notable artists such as, Glenn Dicterow (Concertmaster, New York Philharmonic), Charles Schlueter (Principal Trumpet Emeritus, Boston Symphony), Ronald Baron (Principal Trombone Emeritus, Boston Symphony), Fred Korman (Principal Oboe, Emeritus, Oregon Symphony) and world-renowned trumpet soloist Carl “Doc” Severinsen. 

Dr. Higgins holds a Doctorate in Conducting from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in trumpet performance from the Juilliard School. He is currently the Artistic Director and Conductor of the Portland Wind Symphony, Associate Professor of Conducting and Director of Wind Ensembles at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, and most recently, the Conductor of the Portland Ensign Orchestra.

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