Dr. Belva Worthen Prather, professor of music and director of the Missouri State University Wind Ensemble, was inducted into the Missouri Bandmasters Hall of Fame at the Lake of the Ozarks on June 24. The Missouri Bandmasters Hall of Fame honors band directors, both past and present, who have impacted high school and university bands in Missouri.
Prather has been teaching band for 46 years, with 27 consecutive years of teaching at Missouri State. She has received numerous teaching awards from the university, as well as various regional and national organizations. Her ensembles have appeared at the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic, College Band Directors National Association Conference and the Missouri Music Educators Association Conference.
In addition to conducting the Wind Ensemble at Missouri State, she also leads the Wind Symphony and the University Concert Band. In the Graduate College, she teaches graduate research, advanced conducting and wind band literature.
A native of Fort Smith, Ark., Prather grew up in Mountain Home, Ark. She received her bachelor’s degree from Arkansas Tech University, her master’s degree from Northwestern University and her doctorate from the University of Arkansas.
Prather holds membership in the Missouri Music Educators Association, College Band Directors National Association, National Band Association, Missouri Bandmasters Association and other professional music organizations.
The Missouri Bandmasters (MBA) is an organization with a rich history that extends more than 40 years. MBA promotes instrumental music education, creates an environment of professional camaraderie for band directors at all academic levels, coordinates the auditions, rehearsals and performances of the Missouri All-State Band, provides an educational outlet for band directors and hosts an annual convention each summer.