At the Indiana Music Educators Association (IMEA) Convention in 1953, Nilo Hovey, Don Marketto, Ben Niles, and Jim White met to organize an association to promote bands in the State of Indiana. In the fall of 1954 these men along with Carroll Copeland, Hal Meurer and other fine band directors officially founded the Indiana Bandmasters Association.
IBA would initially engage in sponsoring a Marching Band Clinic, an All-State Band, and act in an advisory capacity for IMEA on band activities. The first Marching Band Clinic was organized in the fall of 1956 and continued each year through the summer of 1979. IBA would sponsor its first All-State Band in 1961 with John Paynter as the guest conductor. The event went to two ensembles, the All-State Band and the All-State Honor Band, in 1980. The first Junior High All-Region Bands were organized in the fall of 1980 at three sites. As interest grew the number of sites was increased to the current twelve. In 1994 the event was renamed the All-Region Honor Band Festival.
The first IBA commission was premiered at the 1988 All-State Honor Band concert with the composer, Robert Jager conducting. The Association premiered the first junior high commission by John O'Reilly at the All-Region Festivals later that fall. The winter of 1995 saw the first collaboration of the Indiana chapter of the College Band Director's National Association (CBDNA) and IBA to sponsor the Indiana All-Collegiate Honor Band. The group now is formed biannually to perform at the IMEA Convention.
In 1999 IBA established a site on the World Wide Web (www). That year the Association also established All-District Honor Bands for students in grades nine through twelve, performing at six sites in the fall of 2000. The first All-District Band commission, by Robert Sheldon, was premiered in the fall of 2005. IBA now commissions a new work for concert band each school year.
2005, the membership of IBA established the "Ray Cramer Scholarship"
a one thousand dollar grant to be awarded annually to a senior member
of the All-State Bands who will pursue a career in music. Previous scholarship
2009 IBA and IMEA co-sponsored the first Indiana Junior All-State Band
for students in grades seven through nine. Their premier performance was
held in conjunction with the 2009 IMEA State Convention. Dr. Susan Creasup
from Morehead State University served as the guest conductor.