Robert Washut is Professor of Music at the University of Northern Iowa, where he served as Director of Jazz Studies from 1980-2002. An accomplished jazz composer and arranger, Washut has received numerous commissions from collegiate and high school jazz ensembles, professional jazz artists, and symphony orchestras. Many of his works are published by Kendor Music (Delevan, NY), UNC Jazz Press (Greeley,CO), Walrus Music Publishing/ejazzlines (Saratoga Springs, NY), C.L. Barnhouse (Oskaloosa, IA), Heritage JazzWorks (Lorenz Corp - Dayton, OH), Sierra Music (Liberty Lake, WI) and Really Good Music (Eau Claire, WI). Washut also has served as a jazz composer-in-residence at numerous universities around the country.
During his 22 years as director of the award-winning UNI Jazz Band One, Washut recorded 11 CDs (two of which earned 5-star ratings from DownBeat magazine), toured Europe three times, consistently received "Outstanding Band" recognition at collegiate jazz festivals throughout the Midwest, and was awarded three "Outstanding Performance" citations in DownBeat's Annual Student Music Awards.
He is in demand as a clinician and adjudicator nationally, and has conducted all-state jazz bands in 15 states. He is also a jazz pianist who founded the locally popular Latin jazz band, Orquesta Alto Maiz, in 1986, with which he remained for 27 years. Washut recorded and released a jazz trio CD entitled Songbook (with Mark Urness and Kevin Hart) in 1999 and a duo CD (with Chris Merz) entitled Gemini in 2007. With Orquesta Alto Maiz, he recorded 10 CDs and performed nationally and internationally. Washut was inducted into the Des Moines CJC Hall of Fame in 2013 and the Iowa IAJE Hall of Fame in 2003. At UNI he was the recipient of the Distinguished Scholar Award in 2015 and the College of Humanities, Arts and Sciences Dean's Award for Excellence in Scholarship, Research and Creative Activity in 2014. He received the Outstanding Teaching Award in 1996.