Blinn College's Prinz honored by Texas Lutheran University

Assistant band director selected as 2020 Outstanding Music Alumni

Assistant band director selected as 2020 Outstanding Music Alumni

March 6, 2020

Kendall Prinz had no idea that when his middle school band director asked for volunteers to play the tuba, it would set in motion a career that would lead to his selection as a Texas Lutheran University (TLU) Outstanding Music Alumni.

Dr. Prinz, Assistant Director of Bands at the Blinn-Brenham Campus, received the award at a TLU alumni reception held during the recent Texas Music Educators Association convention in San Antonio. A 1999 TLU graduate, he is the third recipient of the award.

Prinz, who has been with Blinn for five years, wears several hats, including tuba professor and director of the band’s brass ensemble.

It all began in sixth grade, when Prinz’ band director hauled out a tuba as the first instrument on the first day of class.

“He asked, ‘Who wants to play it?’ There were 150 kids sitting there, and nobody raised their hand,” said Prinz. “He looked at us and said, ‘Well, we’re not moving on until somebody volunteers to play tuba.’ So I raised my hand.”

Prinz was able to coax a sound out of the massive instrument.

“Then everybody wanted to try it because I’d been able to make a sound on it,” he said. “But he picked me. I said, ‘OK, I guess I’m playing tuba.’”

Prinz earned his undergraduate degree in music education from TLU, then received his master’s degree in music composition from the University of North Texas and his doctorate degree in tuba performance from the University of Texas.

Prinz has kept close ties with TLU, helping with its summer music academy since 1999. He was nominated for the Outstanding Alumni Award by the university’s music faculty.

“It’s always good to go back and get in touch with them again,” he said.

After earning his master’s degree, Prinz returned to TLU as an adjunct faculty member. He was there for five years and began working on his doctorate.

Shortly after he and his wife had their second child, Prinz took a position at Sabinal (Texas) High School, then returned to Taylor as middle school band director, teaching there for seven years.

“Around 2010, my dad passed away and the last thing he told me was, ‘You need to finish your doctorate,’ and so I did,” he said.

In 2012, Prinz went to Northwest Missouri State University, serving as a music education professor, tuba professor and assistant band director for three years before returning to Texas to join the Blinn faculty.

His wife Lynn is a teacher at Alton Elementary School in Brenham.

The TLU Distinguished Alumni Award was unexpected, Prinz said.

“I was surprised. It’s quite an honor,” he said.

Todd Quinlan, Performing Arts Department Head, said Prinz’ award “is well-deserved.”

“It has been a real pleasure having him as part of our faculty,” said Quinlan. “He cares very deeply for the students he teaches, whether in private lessons or in the full band setting.”

Blinn’s Music Program, which includes the band, wind symphony, and choirs, is nationally recognized. For more information, visit www.blinn.edu/music.

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