On My Desk: Band director's office is a medley of family, musical notes

FARGO -- Sigurd Johnson's office contains a medley of mementos from his life of travel and music. The director of athletic bands at North Dakota State University, including the Gold Star Marching Band, has been a percussion teacher and band direc...
Sigurd Johnson is director of athletic bands and an associate professor of music at North Dakota State University. His office is filled with mementos from his travels and musical performances. Dave Olson/The Forum

FARGO - Sigurd Johnson's office contains a medley of mementos from his life of travel and music.

The director of athletic bands at North Dakota State University, including the Gold Star Marching Band, has been a percussion teacher and band director for 25 years, the past eight of those at NDSU.

His offices, he says, "have always been like this. I always surround myself with pictures and posters."

Among the images on one wall is a photograph of his late father, Miles Johnson, who was the band director at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., for 37 years.

He also keeps photos in his office of his sons, Per and Kai, and his daughter, Siri, all of whom are in their 20s. Kai, the youngest, is a percussion major at Central Michigan University in Mount Pleasant.

Johnson said being a percussion instructor and band leader are at the core of who he is.

"I don't really know how to do anything else, so it was pretty natural to do the two things I love."

People may watch Johnson and the Gold Star Marching Band in action Sunday at the Fargodome, when the band will play tunes performed during Bison football games this season. The concert begins at 2 p.m. and is free to the public.

Past concerts have drawn more than 1,500 people, Johnson said.

"On My Desk" is a regular feature in which we ask members of the local business community to tell the story behind the items on their desk. To submit an idea, email businessnews@forumcomm.com.