DeKalb Music Boosters names 2020 Hall of Fame inductees

DeKALB – The DeKalb Music Boosters’ Hall of Fame Committee recently announced the four inductees to the DeKalb School District 428 Music Hall of Fame. Nancy and Larry Apperson, Melissa Dye and the late Arthur D. Montzka will be honored for their work in music as volunteers, performers and educators.

The honorees will be recognized at the Hats, Horses, and Harmony fundraiser for DeKalb Music Boosters on May 1 at the River Heights Golf Course clubhouse; doors will open at 6:30 p.m. The event will feature simulated horse races, musical performances, derby-themed hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar, a silent auction and prizes.

Nancy and Larry Apperson will receive the Muse Award, which honors outstanding music advocates who have made a significant impact in developing and fostering the growth of DeKalb School District music programs.

The Appersons helped found the DeKalb Music Boosters and were instrumental in advocating for improved middle and high school music curriculum and spearheaded many fundraising efforts for uniforms, equipment and music trips.

Melissa Dye will be the first recipient of the Virtuoso Award, which recognizes a former DeKalb High School musician who has gone on to have a distinguished career.

Dye, a 1984 graduate of DHS, graduated from Northern Illinois University with a degree in vocal performance. She went on to perform on Broadway in the Tony Award-winning revival of “Into the Woods” and as Sandy in the revival of “Grease.” She also has spent years performing in Toronto, and Chicago where she was nominated for a Joseph Jefferson Award, which is given for theater arts produced in the Chicago area.

The DeKalb Music Boosters will honor Arthur Dale Montzka posthumously with the Maestro Award. The award is presented to a retired music educator who has made a significant impact and helped to develop and foster the growth of music programs within DeKalb’s middle or high school music community.

Montzka was a graduate of George Washington University, Oberlin Conservatory, and the Eastman School of Music. He taught orchestra for 35 years and was the founder and conductor of the Kishwaukee Symphony Orchestra for 23 years. As a teacher, he traveled to schools throughout the the DeKalb district to teach students string instruments. Montzka was one of this country’s early pioneers of the Suzuki Method approach to learning music. He was a board member as well as a lifetime member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas and the American String Teachers Association.

Tickets to Hats, Horses, and Harmony cost $35 a person. Click here to purchase tickets online.

For information, visit or on Facebook, email or call Valerie Vance at 630-670-4830.