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The American Musical Instrument Society


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AMIS 45th Annual Meeting
National Music Museum
Vermillion, South Dakota
May 18-22, 2016

From Wednesday, May 18 through Saturday, May 21, the halls of the National Music Museum (NMM) and the second floor of the Muenster University Center on the campus of the University of South Dakota (USD) in Vermillion will be alive with music and bustling with activity. You are all invited for several days of scholarship, fellowship, musicianship, and “fun-ship” when the NMM hosts AMIS 2016, the 45th annual meeting of the American Musical Instrument Society. The registration fee will be $275 for members, $325 for non-members, and $200 for students. After April 15, the late registration fee will be $325 for members, $375 for non-members, and $250 for students. Meals throughout the conference (except breakfast) and coffee breaks are included in the registration fee. 


We suggest that you print the form, fill it out, and then either scan it and email the scan, or send the paper form by US mail. See the form for payment options and land and email addresses.



Home to one of the world’s most comprehensive collections of musical instruments, the NMM displays more than 1,200 musical artifacts that will encourage AMIS 2016 participants to browse, observe, study, and reflect on our diverse musical heritage.

AMIS 2016 participants will have the opportunity to hear a variety of scholarly papers with subjects ranging from Apparuti to zithers. All of the papers will be given in USD’s new, state-of-the art Muenster University Center (affectionately dubbed the “MUC” by USD students). Most meals and all coffee breaks will be held at the MUC as well.

In An Afternoon at the Museum, participants will have the opportunity to hear demonstrations of select instruments from the NMM collections.  Additionally, guided access to the Mahoney Music Collection will be available at this time, which contains more than 4,800 books, magazines, pamphlets, and ephemera on all facets of stringed instruments, among them a first edition of Leopold Mozart’s treatise, as well as music histories, encyclopedias and lexicons. Find more information about this resource here:

In an evening concert celebration of the region’s historical significance, noted California trumpet player Steve Charpié will bring history to life, leading “The New Custer Brass Band” in a rousing evening performance of music by Dakota Territory Bandmaster Felix Vinatieri (great-great-grandfather of NFL kicker Adam Vinatieri).

Acknowledging that AMIS has many talented musicians of its own, the first-ever AMIS Live! will feature an array of instruments, music, and performers.

A special evening is planned in honor of southeast South Dakota’s Czech heritage. After a feast of South Dakota cuisine, you’ll be tapping your toes and even polka dancing to the Mark Vyhlidal Dance Orchestra.

Another first-ever offering will be the AMIS Story Hour, to be held after award presentations at the Saturday evening banquet. This memorable conclusion to AMIS 2016 will be hosted by young comedian, Jimmy Helm, who currently works for Moth StorySlam in New York City. Participating AMIS members will take the mic to engage and entertain us with stories from their musical lives.

Beyond AMIS, while you’re here: The Vermillion area was one of the stops of the Lewis and Clark Expedition and offers heritage sites to explore. Visit Spirit Mound or enjoy magnificent views of the Missouri River, including one of the last places to see the river in its natural state (just a short drive from town).

Blocks of rooms have been arranged at the Vermillion Best Western and the Prairie Inn and will be held for AMIS members until April 18. Mention AMIS when you make your reservation!  Dormitory housing is available on USD’s campus for $140 for the duration of the conference; however, NO linens are provided. Participants must provide their own pillow, blanket, sheets, and towels. The price of a checked bag would be worth not missing this deal!

We recommend flying into airports located in Sioux Falls, South Dakota (1.25 hour drive), or Omaha, Nebraska (2.5 hour drive).  There is NO public transportation between the airports and Vermillion, so buses from each airport will be chartered Wednesday afternoon (departing Omaha at 3:30 PM; departing Sioux Falls at 4:30 PM) and Sunday morning (departing for both destinations at 5:00 AM) to transport participants from and to Sioux Falls and Omaha.  Please take into consideration travel times and TSA recommendations for airport arrival in making your travel plans. Look for information about reserving your seat in the registration materials.  Alternatively, cars may be rented from the airports.

Program committee: Deborah Check Reeves, Chair; Margaret Downie Banks, Rodger Kelly
Local arrangements: Michael Suing, Patricia Bornhofen

Rev. 16-Mar-2016


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