Dr. Matthew Arau

Dr. Matthew Arau

Request Clinician

Assistant Professor of Music, Chair of Music Education & Associate Director of Bands
Lawrence University

  Biography

Dr. Matthew Arau is an experience. Whether you are drawn to his dynamic speaking, his leadership expertise, his passionate conducting, his dedication to superior musicianship, or his engaging teaching style, the common denominator is Dr. Arau’s uncanny ability to rekindle the flame within and to inspire peak performances.

In addition to being a professor, an active conductor of honor bands, and a saxophone soloist, Arau teaches about leadership, rehearsal techniques, growth mindset, creating a positive culture, and unlocking potential at clinics, conferences, and schools around the country and the world. No matter the setting, one can expect a customized, authentic leadership experience that inspires and empowers students and elevates programs. Through vulnerability, story, and humor, Arau connects with students and teaches the importance of embracing struggle as part of the process of growth and the pursuit of excellence. While working together to create a mission and vision for programs, students learn that leadership comes from within – that who we are matters – and that leadership is about encouraging and inspiring others to become their greatest possibility. Tailor-made to fit the unique qualities of your program and students, collaboration with Dr. Arau is fun, motivating, and transformative, and delivers a lasting impact.

Dr. Matthew Arau is an Assistant Professor of Music, Chair of the Music Education Department and Associate Director of Bands at the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music. He has presented at the following: the International Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic, the Western International Band Clinic, numerous Music Education Association Conferences, the National ACDA Next Direction Conference, Pan-Hellenic Wind Band Conferences in Nicosia, Cyprus and Kalavrita, Greece, and the Malaysian National Band Association in Kuala Lumpur. His articles and videos are published by Musicians Toolkit, Hoonuit Online Learning Company, The Instrumentalist Magazine, Bandworld Magazine, The Saxophone Journal, and Conn-Selmer. He draws on a deep reservoir of fifteen years of experience as a successful middle school and high school band director in Loveland, Colorado, where he led his groups at Loveland High School to numerous championships and pioneered the Leadership Symposium. Dr. Arau holds a D.M.A. in Conducting and Literature from the University of Colorado Boulder and a Masters of Science in Music Education from the American Band College of Southern Oregon University. He graduated magna cum laude from Lawrence University, where he earned a Bachelor of Music in Instrumental Music Education, Music Performance (Classical), Music Performance (Jazz Studies), and a Bachelor of Arts in Government.

Student Leadership: Pathway to Success

Student

This session digs into the why, how, and what of building a thriving student leadership program that lifts up every aspect of a music program. Be ready to put leadership into action!


The 4C's of fortissimo Leadership: A Blueprint for Success

Student

This session teaches the four cornerstones of leadership and equips our students to lead and thrive.


Upbeat! Creating a Positive Culture in Music Ensembles

Student

This session provides strategies and ideas from positive psychology to raise spirits and strengthen community so that our daily routine is fulfilling and meaningful.


Conducting and Teaching Music with Intent

Teacher

We can change the outcome and elevate the level of artistry and musicianship when we are clear in our intent and purpose. Sometimes the “nudge” needed to get to the next level is more in how we do it than in what we do. Bring your batons!


Edge of Your Seat Rehearsals

Teacher

This clinic provides strategies to engage students at the highest level throughout rehearsals to ensure they are literally and figuratively on the edge of their seats.


Empowerment, Trust, and Creativity in Music Making

Teacher

Often in ensemble rehearsals, it is the conductor who makes the decisions and who has the greatest opportunity to be creative. Grappling with the question of WHY we do what we do, this session seeks to broaden the responsibility for creativity, artistry, and musicianship through empowerment of ensemble members in an environment founded on connection and trust.


Leadership Matters: Enhance Your Music Program with Effective Student Leadership

Teacher

This clinic will present a proven method of training student leaders who are intrinsically motivated and who operate using core principles of Stephen Covey, John Maxwell, john wooden, and other notable leaders. Teachers will be given the tools to start their own leadership training program and be able to reap the reward of driven students, efficient rehearsals, and a culture of excellence.


Making the Connection

Teacher

How we connect with ensemble members, the music, the audience, parents and administrators is critical to our success as music educators. This session will expand on Brené Brown's idea of connecting through vulnerability and apply it to our daily lives as music teachers.


Unlocking Potential: The Impact of Mindset on Success

Teacher

This session will dive into the concept of midset and its critical impact on education in the music classroom. It will explore methods to teach the concept of mindset and provide strategies to encourage a growth mindset classroom so students can unlock their potential.


Upbeat! Creating a Positive Culture in Music Ensembles

Teacher

This session provides strategies and ideas from positive psychology to raise spirits and strengthen community so our daily routine in fulfilling and meaningful.


Vulnerability and Meaning in Music Rehearsal

Teacher

This clinic will focus on tapping into the emotional content and meaning of the music we program and how we can create a rehearsal that focuses on the affective side of music-making by connecting through vulnerability.


Alt Tag Again!

Keep the Flame Lit

The first days of the school year are an opportunity for a fresh start, a new beginning, and an opportunity to once again ignite the flame for music. As music teachers we devote our lives to share our love for and knowledge of music with our students.

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Students looking out above a mountaintop.

Helping Students Reach the Mountaintop

I believe one of the reasons we become teachers is so that we can help our students reach their full potential. As we gain experience and develop as educators, we learn new methods and strategies to help our students gain success. However, we all have felt disappointment when a student gives up before reaching the top of the mountain. 

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Matthew Arau talking with a student.

Connecting Through Vulnerability

Why do students love music class? Because it fulfills their greatest needs—connection, love, and belonging. As we return to our campuses this month, let’s try to be a little more vulnerable and connect at a new level.

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Matthew Arau talking with a group of students.

The Trust of Leadership

How can trust be established? This article will focus on the importance of trust in the development of a band student leadership program and the process of developing trust.

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