Congratulations Tony Boldt!
SEMYO Bravura Award Recipient 2022
Sponsored by First Alliance Credit Union

Southeastern Minnesota Youth Orchestras (SEMYO) will award Kasson-Mantorville High School Band and Rochester Community Band director Tony Boldt the 7th annual Bravura Award for Inspiring Student Excellence Through Music Education. He was selected by a panel of peers for his success in developing young musicians, his leadership in music education, and for his ability to inspire musicians of all ages and backgrounds. SEMYO will honor Mr. Boldt at the annual It’s Instrumental: An Evening of Chamber Music event on Friday, October 28 from 6-8:30 PM at the Rochester Art Center. This formal event is a celebration of music education and will also include dinner and performances by local student and professional musicians. More information and tickets are available at

Mr. Boldt is in his 12th year as Director of Bands at Kasson-Mantorville High School where he is also being honored with the 2022-2023 Teacher of the Year Award from the Kasson-Mantorville Education Minnesota Chapter. Kasson-Mantorville High School was Mr. Boldt’s first position after completing a Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Education from Concordia College in his hometown of Moorhead, Minnesota. In 2019 he received his Master of Arts in Music Education from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul. Mr. Boldt is currently serving as Band Vice President for the Minnesota Music Educators Association and coordinating the Minnesota All-State Band program.  

In addition to teaching high school students, Mr. Boldt enjoys collaborating with local musicians and community ensembles in his role as conductor of the Rochester Community Band, and as a performer on tuba for the Classic Brass Quintet and Rochester Pops Orchestra. He has also been involved in musical theater in some capacity or another over the last twenty years including playing keyboard.

Mr. Boldt says that he discovered his passion for music in third grade when he started piano lessons with teacher Judy England who was “wonderful at instilling a love for sight reading.” He credits his parents for always being supportive of his passion for music and his middle and high school orchestra, band, and musical pit orchestra directors Brian Cole, Denise Pesola, Chris Olson, Doug Engstrom, and John Larson who “instilled a love for music and showed what a quality and engaging music program could be.” Mr. Boldt is also thankful for his wonderful college mentors including Dr. Scott Jones and Dr. Nat Dickey. 

When asked why he thinks music education is important Mr. Boldt responded:

“It is crucial that students have access to a quality music education starting at a young age. Music is such an integral part of who we are as human beings. Students need to have multiple avenues in which to express themselves creatively and music provides a way to do so collaboratively. At the core of communities that support music education lie individuals and organizations who seek collaboration and exploration with their students. The continuation of music education into adulthood is also so important and community bands and community ensembles allow for expression and creativity as lifelong endeavors.”

Mr. Boldt also goes on to state that “my passion for music lies in the interactions we get to have with one another while making music. I am so thankful for the daily engagements with students and community members in music making.”

Mr. Boldt is the 7th recipient of the Bravura Award for Music Education, an award given annually by SEMYO to a music teacher from Southeastern Minnesota. SEMYO is a non-profit organization dedicated to the artistic and personal development of young musicians throughout Southeastern Minnesota. SEMYO realizes its mission through a rigorous music education program that includes five youth orchestras, chamber music program, summer music camp, and outreach program at Riverside Central Elementary School. To learn more about SEMYO visit


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