Dr. Brian Zator
Dr. Brian Zator is in his tenth year serving as the Director of Percussion at Texas A&M University-Commerce. His responsibilities include the classical and marching percussion ensembles, the "Panimation" Steel Drum Band, “Samba Leão” Brazilian Ensemble, undergraduate and graduate applied lessons, and the percussion methods and literature courses. He earned his BME degree from Baylor University, MM degree from the University of Michigan and his DMA from the University of North Texas. He is also a student of world-renowned marimba artist, Keiko Abe, having performed and studied with her in Japan.
As a marimba/percussion soloist or ensemble director, Dr. Zator has performed at six Percussive Arts Society International Conventions, the Texas Music Educators Association Convention, the Texas Bandmasters Association Convention, the College Band Directors National Association Convention, the North Texas Marimba Workshop and abroad in Brazil, Japan and Australia. He has been a soloist with groups such as the Lone Star Wind Orchestra, the University of North Texas Wind Symphony, the Baylor Woodwind Quintet, the A&M-Commerce Wind Ensemble and Symphonic Band, the Conroe and The Woodlands Symphonies, and with college and high school percussion ensembles around the country.
Dr. Zator and the A&M-Commerce percussion ensemble were one of the three winners of the 2010 PAS International Percussion Ensemble Competition and performed a showcase concert at PASIC 2010. The ensemble also presented a concert at PASIC 2006 featuring works of Minoru Miki and in 2007, released a CD entitled “Sohmon III: New and Unknown Percussion Works of Minoru Miki”. They will release their second CD later this year entitled, “Epic Proportions”.
Dr. Zator is the primary keyboard artist for the iPhone app, Pocket Percussion Teacher, providing detailed video explanations of technical aspects for marimba. He is a founding member of the percussion groups Pulsus and NT3, and the principal timpanist and percussionist with the Northeast Texas Symphony. He was a member of the Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps and taught the University of Michigan drumline. Active within the Percussive Arts Society, he is on the Board of Directors, serves on the Keyboard and Percussion Ensemble Committees, writes reviews for Percussive Notes and has adjudicated the PAS International Percussion Ensemble and Composition Competitions. Dr. Zator is proud to be a performing artist and clinician for Dynasty, Innovative Percussion, Sabian and Evans.