President Papp conducts KSU Wind Ensemble


KENNESAW, Ga.  (March 19, 2015) —Most people would be content to hum along as the band…

Georgia (Mar 19, 2015)

KENNESAW, Ga.  (March 19, 2015) —Most people would be content to hum along as the band played John Philip Sousa’s rousing “Washington Post March,” but not Kennesaw State President Daniel S. Papp.

Last night before an enthusiastic crowd at the Dr. Bobbie Bailey & Family Performance Center, Papp donned a tuxedo and conducted the KSU Wind Ensemble in a fortissimo rendition of one of America’s favorite marches.

It was a “first” for Papp, who had never before wielded the conductor’s baton, and when it was done, the audience gave him and the ensemble a standing ovation.

“I had a brief lesson from music professor David Kehler,” Papp said, “and I practiced with the KSU Symphony earlier this week.”

While admitting he doesn’t have much formal musical training, Papp said, “I love all kinds of music, all kinds of rock and country but primarily Southern rock, heavy metal and American musicals. I believe it is a key to culture.”

Could there be more musical performances in his future?

“There are two instruments I enjoy playing,” he said. “I have taken harmonica and saxophone lessons, and I intend to learn how to play them better, especially the sax, when I get some time.”

Papp’s conducting debut wrapped up a special evening performance by the KSU Wind Ensemble with guest composer David Kirkland Garner and the Georgia premiere of his piece, “Concerto for Soprano Saxophone and Wind Ensemble,” featuring KSU Director of Jazz Studies Sam Skelton on soprano saxophone. Also on the program, Michael Torke’s 2013 composition “Bliss” had its Georgia premiere.

To watch a video of the concert, please visit:

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Kennesaw State University is the third-largest university in Georgia, offering more than 100 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees. A member of the University System of Georgia, Kennesaw State is a comprehensive university with more than 32,000 students from 130 countries. In January 2015, Kennesaw State and Southern Polytechnic State University consolidated to create one of the 50 largest public universities in the country. 


-- Robert S. Godlewski, photo by Anthony Stalcup


A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit