Kyle conducts L'Histoire du soldat (Igor Stravinsky) at the Finger Lakes Chamber Music Festival, 2013


"The music (and music making) of composer/conductor Kyle Wernke exhibits the best of his generation - integrity, sophistication, imagination and infectious personalities. An independent soul, without jumping on bandwagons and -isms, Wernke communicates with striking originality, sincerity of emotion, rough energy and contagious enthusiasm."


Kyle Wernke is a composer, conductor, and saxophonist currently based in Rolla, MO where he serves as the Director of Orchestras at Missouri University of Science and Technology. Wernke is an avid composer who has studied with some of today's finest musicians including Robert Carl, Michael Schelle, Larry Alan Smith, and Ken Steen. 

Wernke's music has been heard across the United States and Europe including at the June in Buffalo New Music Festival (2019), Charlotte New Music Festival (2018) and the Walden Creative Musician's Retreat (2016). In 2018 his piece BURST was selected by Ablaze Records for their album "Orchestral Masters, Vol. 6" and was recorded by the Brno Philharmonic. His works for wind ensemble have been performed by the Butler Wind Ensemble and the Hartt Wind Ensemble. His chamber music has been performed by extraordinary groups such as the Mivos String Quartet, Hypercube, and Ensemble Signal. His music has been described as “Brilliant!” (Douglas Knehans), “Contagious” (Michael Schelle), and “Really not very good, is it?” (Brian Ferneyhough).

2016 saw the completion of his first opera, also his Doctoral Dissertation, an opera in four acts based on Stephen King's novel The Wind Through the Keyhole. In 2016 Wernke also guest conducted the Willimantic Orchestra in Willimantic, CT. In 2017 Wernke was named the Director of Orchestras at Missouri S&T, a post he still holds and cherishes.

A self-published composer, his work can be found on, or by following the links on the "works" pages. 


Teaching Positions

  • Missouri University of Science and Technology (2017-Present)

    • Director of Orchestras

  • The University of Hartford, Hartt School (2016)

    • Adjunct Professor of Music

  • The Hotchkiss School (2015-2016)

    • Private Composition Instructor

  • The University of Hartford, Hartt School (2013-2014)

    • Composition Instruction Graduate Fellow

  • Capital Preparatory Magnet School (2013-2017)

    • Saxophone Instructor

  • Butler Community Arts School (2009-2013)

    • Saxophone Instructor


  • The University of Hartford, Hartt School

    • D.M.A. in Composition, 2016

  • Butler University

    • M.M. in Orchestral Conducting, 2013

    • B.M. in Composition, 2011 (Graduated with Honors)