Dr. Brian Pfoltner is currently the Director of Music at First Presbyterian Church in Lincoln, NE, where he directs the Chancel Choir, Chancel Bells, various instrumental ensembles, and oversees the entire music program. In this position he continues to write and arrange music for the various church ensembles. Dr. Pfoltner was also the founding director of the Arts for the Soul Music & Fine Arts Series at First Presbyterian, and has served as its Artistic & Executive Director since its premiere in the fall of 2007. Since its creation, the Arts for the Soul series has presented a wide range of high-quality arts events and outreach for the community, including classical, crossover, jazz and world music, modern dance, Celtic music and dance, and silent films with live organ accompaniment. Performers have included artists of national and international reputation as well as the First Presbyterian Choir and other local artists.
Prior to coming to First Presbyterian Dr. Pfoltner was involved in the nationally recognized music program at First-Plymouth Congregational Church in Lincoln. At First-Plymouth Brian was a member of the Plymouth Brass, served as composer/arranger-in-residence for the Plymouth Brass and the Plymouth and Abendmusik Choruses, and often was called upon to conduct both the instrumental and choral ensembles in both concerts and weekly televised worship services. During his years at First-Plymouth Brian wrote and arranged well over 50 works, ranging from brass quintets to pieces for large brass ensemble, chorus, and organ. He also conducted and arranged music for the Plymouth Youth Ensemble, a group of anywhere from 45 to 65 instrumentalists in grades 7-12.
As a composer, Dr. Pfoltner has twice been recognized by the Nebraska Arts Council (their awards being offered only every three years). In 2008 he was awarded their Distinguished Achievement Award for musical composition, the highest award given by that organization for individual artists. In 2014 he was again honored with their Merit Award in composition. His first recording, “Light From Out of Darkness”, was released in 2007, and contains many of his works in live performances at First-Plymouth Church in Lincoln. The CD can be obtained from Dr. Pfoltner or from First-Plymouth Church (Abendmusik). His “Pike’s Peak Overture” (Denver Brass Publications), is also available on the Denver Brass recording, Wonderful World.
Dr. Pfoltner also taught part-time at Concordia University in Seward, NE for many years, where he taught applied brass lessons, composition and arranging, and directed several chamber ensembles. Dr. Pfoltner received his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1995, with a major in trumpet performance, a minor in music theory, and additional emphasis in conducting. Dr. Pfoltner also holds degrees from the University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS, and Morningside College, Sioux City, IA.
Prior to beginning work at UNL, he was Director of Bands and Instrumental Music at Colby (KS) Community College. While in Lincoln Dr. Pfoltner has also performed with such groups as the Lincoln Symphony Orchestra, the Third Chair Chamber Players, and the Nebraska Trumpet Ensemble. He is also a past conductor of the Lincoln Community Concert Band.