2022 All-State Middle Level Orchestra

All-State Orchestra Conductor Bio

A native of Longview, Washington, Clark Potter is Professor of Viola at the Glenn Korff School of Music at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where he is also on the conducting faculty. Mr. Potter has conducted the Lincoln Youth Symphony since 2007 and has conducted that ensemble on trips to Rome, Prague, Budapest, Dresden, Leipzig, Vienna, Dublin and Belfast. He is also a member of three chamber ensembles: the Nebraska Chamber Players, the Trans-Nebraska Players, and the recently formed UNL faculty ensemble, Una Corda. He is an active recital soloist, halfway toward his goal of performing as a soloist or chamber musician in each of the 50 states. Potter recently retired from the Principal Viola position after a quarter century with Lincoln’s Symphony Orchestra. He is in demand as an adjudicator and clinician at schools in Nebraska and around the region, and he has conducted All-State Middle School Orchestras in Iowa, Oregon and Alabama. He has appeared more than 20 times as a guest conductor of high school honors orchestras in Iowa, Kansas, South Dakota, Nevada and Nebraska. In 2008, Mr. Potter was recognized by the Nebraska chapter of the American String Teachers Association as the String Educator of the Year. He is active in ASTA: he served six years on the board of the Nebraska chapter, he was president of the Oregon chapter, and he has written for the organization's national magazine. Mr. Potter recently served a three-year term on the Nebraska Music Educators Association executive board. 

In 2019, Potter traveled three times to Europe. In March, he conducted the Lincoln Youth Symphony in Rome. In April, he conducted a youth orchestra in Budapest comprised of musicians from International Christian Schools from many of the major cities of Europe as well as Istanbul and Moscow. Then in October, Mr. Potter was invited to give a lecture regarding "The Shakespeare Project" and perform with the Trans-Nebraska Players at the Musical Intersections in Practice conference held at Churchill College, Cambridge University in Cambridge, England. That performance included works which Potter arranged of orchestral pieces inspired by Shakespeare's plays along with readings from Shakespeare plays.

Additional research interests include the following: In 2017, Professor Potter gave the world premiere of the 1946 viola sonata by Oscar-winning film composer Ernest Gold in Lincoln with Professor Mark Clinton, and later in the year he presented a lecture/recital of the work at the American Viola Society meetings in Los Angeles. Gold’s unpublished viola concerto is also currently under review. In addition, Potter recently completed his edition of the six cello suites by Bach for viola. This followed a grant award which provided a 5-string viola for the viola studio at UNL, allowing him to complete the edition with a version of the sixth suite.

Prior to his appointment at Nebraska, Mr. Potter taught nine years at Eastern Oregon University, where he was associate professor of strings and conductor of the Grande Ronde Symphony. He received his graduate degrees from Indiana University and California Institute of the Arts and his bachelor's degree from Western Washington University. He has studied viola or violin with Peter Marsh, James Dunham, Charmian Gadd, Richard Goldner, and Mimi Zweig.

During the summers, Mr. Potter is on the faculty of the Omaha Conservatory of Music Institute.  He has been a performer in the Oregon Coast Music Festival Orchestra, a guest artist at Rocky Ridge Music Center, artist/teacher of viola and chamber music at the Young Musicians and Artists summer program in Salem, Oregon, the Puget Sound Chamber Music Workshop, Lutheran Summer Music program and the Csehy Summer School of Music. 

Clark would rather be at home than anywhere else in the world, however, enjoying time with his family, including wife, Jan; daughter Shannon and her whippets Apollo and Gemini; and son Samuel and his wife Alexandria, his first grandchild Hudson, and their pug Stinky Pete. He is a big baseball and Seattle Mariners fan, and his favorite hobby is to run and race on roads and trails year around.


What is the All-State Middle Level Orchestra?
Strings students in seventh and eighth grades (whose teachers are NMEA members) are offered a chance to work with acclaimed conductors during even-years of the Nebraska Music Education Association Conference/Clinic. The 2022 All-State Middle Level Orchestra will take place on Wednesday, November 16. This is a one-day event with the final performance on the Lied Center for Performing Arts main stage. Auditions will be held in the fall.

Who can attend?

  • Students attending must be registered and attending the school or home school listed on the registration
  • Students must be under the direction of an NMEA member
  • Students must be in the seventh or eighth grades during the 2022-2023 school year
  • The director MUST be registered and attend the Conference with their student(s).
  • If you wish to become a member of this organization visit: www.nafme.org


August 1 - August 31: Audition application for students is open on NMEA website ($10 fee). Teachers can begin uploading audition files using the Google Form link provided in registration confirmation email.

EXTENDED to September 7 @ 11:59 p.m. CST: Audition application closed.

September 17 @ 11:59 p.m. CST: Google Form closes for audition uploads.

Early October: All-State Middle Level Orchestra Selections are announced.

October 14: Registration payment ($50 per student) is due for selected participants.


Shadowgate Christian A. Williams
Blue Water Yukiko Nishimura
Andante Festivo Jean Sibelius
Aurora Borealis Michael Hopkins



Students selected for the 2022 All-State Middle Level Orchestra are now available for directors to view. Directors will need to log in to their NMEA website profile in order to view the results. The list will be available for the public to view starting Friday, October 7.

View the Selected Participants

There will be a $10.00 audition fee for all students who audition for the 2022 All-State Middle Level Orchestra and a $50.00 participation fee for those students that are selected. The $50 fee per student covers festival fees, T-shirt, snack, lunch, and sales tax. If your students are selected you will receive an invoice to pay for the remaining participation fee and any extra t-shirts or lunches for teacher volunteers.


The Middle Level Orchestra schedule can also be found on page 4 of the NMEA Conference Schedule. All schedule times are in Central Time. The schedule is subject to change.

7:15am-8:00am Middle Level Orchestra Teacher Registration and Student Check-In Westbrook Music Building (UNL) Room 132
8:00am-9:30am Rehearsal WMB 132
9:30am-10:00am Break + Snack WMB 130 & 132
10:00am-11:30am Rehearsal WMB 132
11:30-12:15pm Lunch WMB 130
12:30-1:00pm Touch base & line up to go to Lied Stage WMB 132
1:15-2:00pm Dress Rehearsal Lied Center Stage
2:00-2:30 pm Break - use restrooms  
2:30-4:15pm Rehearsal WMB 132
4:00pm-5:00pm Middle Level Orchestra and Choir Concert (Choir sings first) Lied Center Stage
4:15pm (approx) Orchestra moves to Lied Center  
5:00-5:15pm Dismissal, teacher pick-up Outside WMB