Dr. Paula Holcomb came to the State University of New York at Fredonia in 1999 after serving as Director of Bands for 20 years at Central College in Pella, Iowa. Under her direction at Central College, the Symphonic Wind Ensemble and the Symphonic Band toured to Canada, Europe, and Mexico and performed at Alice Tully Hall of New York City’s Lincoln Center.
At SUNY Fredonia, Holcomb conducts the Wind Ensemble and teaches graduate and undergraduate conducting. Additionally, she initiated the conducting program as part of the Master of Music in Performance. The SUNY Fredonia Wind Ensemble has featured international guest artists including Larry Combs, Dan Perantoni, Joseph Schwantner, Samuel Adler, Jim Self, Randall Hawes, Gail Williams, Yu Hai and Donald Hunsberger. Holcomb organized and conducted a ten-day Wind Ensemble Tour of China, and released the Fredonia Wind Ensemble CD – Commissions and Concertos featuring new commissions and soloists Alex Jokipii and Randall Hawes. In 2011 she initiated the International Conducting Symposium with co-clinician Peter Ettrup Larsen at Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland.
Highly sought after as an adjudicator and guest conductor, Dr. Holcomb has conducted bands and orchestras in 42 states, South America, Australia, China, Hong Kong, Mexico, Europe, Singapore, and Canada. She has presented Conducting Symposiums in Canada, Europe, South America, Asia, Australia and the United States.
Dr. Holcomb is former assistant horn of the Des Moines Symphony and past president of the Iowa Music Educators Association. As a hornist, Holcomb has performed with international artists including Chuck Mangione, Simon Estes, Billy Taylor, Doc Severinson, and The Moody Blues.
Recently, she was presented with the A. Frank Miller award from Kappa Kappa Psi and elected to the Council for the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles, Vice President of the Conductors Guild and Past President of the Northeastern Division of the College Band Directors National Association.