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Having a great love for music that began during his childhood in western Kansas, David Stagg shared that passion with thousands of students who passed through his classrooms and participated in campus instrumental groups over the past 30 years. The well-known educator, conductor and trombonist retired in December 2011 as professor emeritus of music.
Stagg was known by his colleagues for his sense of humor in addition to his skill as a musician and teacher. Before he came to UCM as assistant professor of music and director of bands, he taught and directed bands at institutions that included Central College in Pella, Iowa, and Westmar College in LeMars, Iowa. He also was a graduate assistant in music education at the University of Iowa, where he earned master’s and doctoral degrees in music.
Stagg’s higher education began at Wichita State University, where he pursued a bachelor’s degree in music education, and also found time to join the Wichita Symphony Orchestra. His college coursework was put on hold when he was drafted into the U.S. military, but that did not stop him from pursuing his favorite pastime. After succeeding in tryouts, he was selected to perform with the U.S. Army Field Band in Washington, D.C., and spent four years with the group before returning to Wichita to finish his bachelor’s degree.
During his tenure at UCM, Stagg coordinated Experiencing Music classes, and courses in Trumpet, Trombone, and French Horn, as well as Marching Band, Symphonic Band, and Brass Ensemble, which gave students an opportunity to perform on campus. Stagg and his music students were highly visible performers at large-scale campus events, and he also was the TUBA Faculty sponsor, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia faculty adviser, and Pi Kappa Lambda chapter president.