Representing a “new generation” of wind band conductors, Professor Carnahan brings a broad knowledge and extensive background to all idioms of instrumental music performance. His university ensembles have gained widespread notoriety for distinctive performance quality and imaginative musical interpretation. The Los Angeles Times hailed the University Wind Symphony as, “…thoroughly disciplined and euphonious!” His ensembles have been honored with invitations to perform at numerous regional, national, and international music conferences and festivals, including: the Music Educators National Conference (MENC) Biennial National Conference, the College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA) Regional and National Conferences, the American Bandmasters Association (ABA) National Conference, the Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA) State Conference, and as the featured university ensemble at the Korean International Wind Band Festival in Seoul, Korea. A champion of new music, Professor Carnahan has been a member of numerous national commissioning projects and has premiered more than twenty new works over the past several years.
In addition to his university duties, Professor Carnahan is very active as a guest conductor, clinician, composer/arranger, author, and adjudicator. He has conducted countless honor ensemble performances at the local, regional, national, and international levels. He served as a visiting professor at Hanyang University in Seoul, Korea and conducted highly acclaimed performances in the Seoul Arts Center Theater. He also worked as a music/performance consultant with the nationally renowned Dallas Brass.
Professor Carnahan is a sought-after rehearsal clinician. He has presented numerous performance demonstrations for notable national and international music education conferences, including the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago, Il and the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles (WASBE) International Conference in Utrecht, Netherlands. His innovative and thought-provoking sessions on ensemble rehearsal techniques and the art of conducting are consistently well received.
Professor Carnahan is a sought-after rehearsal clinician and has presented numerous clinics and performance demonstrations for national and statewide music education organizations and conferences including the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago, Il. His innovative and thought-provoking sessions on ensemble rehearsal techniques and the art of conducting are always well received.
Professor Carnahan is also an award-winning composer. His compositions are performed throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. In 2007, he won the College Band Directors National Association Young Band Composition Contest with his piece, “…and the antelope play,” published through Manhattan Beach Publications. The composition was selected to be included in the Guide to Band Masterworks, Volume 6, by Meredith Music Publications, and in the Teaching Music Through Performance in Band Series, by GIA Publications, Inc. “A Dream of Coming Home,” and “I Hear Him! – For The Maestro”, were also selected for inclusion in the Teaching Music Through Performance in Band Series. Several of his pieces have received premiere performances in Carnegie Hall, NY. Recently, his string orchestra piece, As Summer Passed, was performed at the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago, Il. Additional compositions are published through C. Alan Publications, World Projects Publications, and at johnalancarnahan.com.
As an author, Professor Carnahan completed the first volume of his three-volume set of the Definitive Guide Series for wind band: The Wind Band Sound, A Definitive Guide to Ensemble Intonation, and is available through World Projects Publications. Volume II, A Definitive Guide to Ensemble Clarity, and Volume III, A Definitive Guide to Ensemble Expression, are scheduled for upcoming releases.
Professor Carnahan is a Music For All National Adjudicator and clinician, and holds membership in the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles (WASBE), the College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA), Life-Member of the Southern California School Band and Orchestra Association (SCSBOA) and honored with membership in the American Bandmasters Association (ABA) in 2013.