About Us

Formed in August 2009, the Desert Winds is widely recognized as Las Vegas’ premiere contemporary wind ensemble. The organization features a roster of over 50 performers that include many local music educators, students and freelance musicians. Since its debut, the Desert Winds has reached thousands of people through both inspiring performances and educational programs. The ultimate honor was received in 2016 when the ensemble was selected to perform for the 70th anniversary of The Midwest Clinic in Chicago.

The 2016-2017 season marks founding Artistic Director Charles A Maguire's 8th year with the Desert Winds. Upon its establishment, the ensemble has continuously focused on achieving the highest levels of musical artistry under Maguire's direction. 

Originally created as an extension of the Desert Spring Arts, The Desert Winds restructured in January (2017) to become a partner program of the Jewish Community Center of Southern Nevada, a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit.  Though the organization has evolved from a dectet in its infancy season to its current successful formation, the musical integrity has remained the same because of Maguire's assiduous guidance. Today, the ensemble continues to evolve with each new collaboration and audience.  The Desert Winds Group will expand once again in the 2017-18 season as we present 4 separate performing ensembles to better serve a vibrant and growing fine arts community in Southern Nevada.


The Desert Winds


Dr. Charles A Maguire

Artistic Director


John Seaton

Associate Conductor


Dr. Carmella Cao

Concert Master

The 15


Angela Berens

Associate Director


Dr. Stephen Turner

Associate Director

The Honor Winds


John Seaton



Philip Haines




Jay Poster

Community Liaison


Sheryl Gamiao

Librarian and
Operations Manager


David Gieseler

Personnel and
Operations Manager