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Glenn Schaft is Associate Professor and Director of Percussion Studies at Youngstown State University where he directs the Percussion Ensemble, teaches private lessons, small group lessons, and Percussion Seminar Class. He is the faculty advisor and founder of the Youngstown Percussion Collective and founded the College of Fine and Performing Arts SMARTS drum circle outreach program. Glenn is an educational artist with Avedis Zildjian Co., ProMark Inc., Remo Inc., and an educational consultant with Black Swamp Percussion.
Glenn's professional performance and teaching career began in 1975 and includes myriad musical idioms such as classical, new music, jazz, blues, rock, Brazilian, West African, and Afro-Cuban. As a drumset artist, Glenn has performed with regional musicians including Teddy Pantelas, Cliff Barnes, Theron Brown, Wilber Krebs, Dave Kana, Tim Harker, Sean Jones, Howie Smith, Dave Morgan, Kent Engelhardt, Dan Wilson, Jeff Grubbs, Dan Wall, Joe Augustine, Frank Castellano, Jack Shantz, Steve Cipriano, Brett Burleson, Doug Richeson, Jeff Halsey, Ken Karsh, Tim Powell, Bob Fraser, and John Reese.
Glenn directed the commissioning, 2011 world premiere, and 2012 recording release of Dave Morgan's Forms Of Things Unknown with the Youngstown Percussion Collective. Glenn is presently writing a book about drumset improvisation and musical interpretation.
Glenn has attended the Percussive Arts Society International Conventions, (PASIC) since 1982 and has served on the Drumset Committee, College Pedagogy Committee, among others. He has appeared as lecturer, clinician, and performer at PASIC’s, including moderating panel discussions “Teaching Drumset in the University Percussion Methods Class” at the 2003 PASIC and the 1999 PASIC “Drumset Educators Panel Discussion”. Glenn has presented clinics at numerous Percussive Arts Society Days of Percussion in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Indiana.
Glenn earned the Doctor of Musical Arts in Percussion Performance and Literature at the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana, the Master of Arts at Eastern Illinois, the Bachelor of Music at Baldwin-Wallace College, and pursued post-doctoral studies in contemporary music and orchestral percussion at Cleveland State University. His principal teachers include Harold Damas, George Kiteley, Johnny Lee Lane, Tom Siwe, and Jay Burnham of the Cleveland Orchestra. Glenn studied orchestral percussion with Tom Freer, drumset with John Riley, Lewis Nash, and John Hollenbeck, Afro-Cuban percussion with Roberto Vizcaino, Fermin Nani, and Santiago Nani at the National School of the Arts in Havana, Cuba, with Giovanni Hidalgo, Horacio Hernandez, Glen Velez, Jamie Haddad, and Trichi Sankaran at the Berklee College of Music World Percussion Festival, drum circle facilitation with Christine Stevens, ethnomusicology with Bruno Nettl, Charles Capwell, Tom Torino, Larry Gushee, and jazz composition with Alan Horney.
Glenn twice toured China with the YSU Faculty Jazz Group performing and teaching at acclaimed universities in Beijing, Nanjing, and Hangzhou. He performed Lou Harrison’s percussion and dance music with the Youngstown Percussion Collective and the Cleveland Dance Theater Collective at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention in Louisville, Kentucky and performed Edgard Varese's Ionization with Peter Erskine and the Pittsburgh Symphony Percussion Section at Heinz Hall in Pittsburgh. Glenn commissioned and recorded Dave Morgan’s concerto Reactions for drumset soloist and wind band on the critically acclaimed disc Dark Wood, which also features the YSU Percussion Ensemble and Youngstown Percussion Collective. Glenn recorded Time Mark, for multiple percussion & tape on Scott Wyatt's Collections II for chamber music and electronics and seven critically acclaimed discs with the Cleveland Chamber Symphony on Gunther Schueller’s label, GM records. Glenn hosted the 2006 Percussive Arts Society Ohio Day of Percussion and founded and hosted three Afro-Cuban Arts Festivals at YSU.
Glenn assisted the Youngstown Percussion Collective in commissioning composer/percussionist John Hollenbeck to write Ziggurat (exterior) for saxophones and percussion. YPC presented the 2007 world premiere at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City and produced the recording of it for the 2008 John Hollenbeck release Rainbow Jimmies. Glenn commissioned and recorded Dave Morgan’s concerto Reactions for drumset and wind band with the YSU Wind Ensemble on the 2005 disc Spin Cycle;whichwas voted “winner” of the Downbeat magazine Outstanding College Wind Ensemble Recording Competition.
Glenn's symphonic experience includes the Colorado Music Festival, Cleveland Chamber Symphony, Cleveland Ballet, Ohio Chamber Orchestra, Cleveland Opera, Robert Page Singers, Akron Symphony, Richmond Symphony, Springfield Symphony, Youngstown Symphony, Duluth-Superior Symphony, Champaign-Urbana Symphony, Lake Superior Chamber Orchestra, the Air Force Band of Mid-America, and the Skaneateles Chamber Music Festival in New York with Trichi Sankaran and others. He performed contemporary and world percussion music for six years with BATTU "Artists In Residence" at Baldwin-Wallace College.
As a drumset artist, Glenn performed Cleveland Opera’s world premiere of Stewart Copeland’s Holy Blood and Crescent Moon, and has performed with rock & roll legend Chuck Berry, a 25-state tour with the 1940's Radio Hour Show, with numerous artists such as Alison Krauss, Cleveland Jazz Orchestra, Paquito D’Rivera, Jim McNeely, Sean Jones, Marvin Stamm, Nick Brignola, Harold Danko, Chip Stephens, John Fedchock, Todd Coolman, Randy Johnston, James Weidman, Ralph Lalama, Dan Wall, Ernie Krivda, Howie Smith, Jeff Grubbs, Brad Goode, Hal Melia, Phil DeGreg, Pat Harbison, Bryan Lynch, Laurence Hobgood, Anthony Cox, Kim Richmond, Paul McKee, Phil Palombi, Don Menza, Dominic Spera, Jerry Coker, Ken Peplowski, Bob Fraser, and Tony Leonardi.
Glenn has taught at Eastern Illinois University, the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, Parkland College, Baldwin-Wallace College, University of Minnesota-Duluth, Concordia College, University of Minnesota-Moorhead, North Dakota State University, Cuyahoga Community College. He has presented clinics, masterclasses, and lectures at the University of Michigan, Indiana University, Purdue University, Eastern Illinois University, University of Akron, Ashland University, Kent State University, Southern Illinois University, Slippery Rock University, Denison University, Ohio Music Education Association Professional Conferences, and the Interlochen School of the Arts. He has adjudicated MENC State Solo and Ensemble Events and numerous Collegiate and High School Jazz Festivals throughout the midwest.
Glenn lives in Poland, Ohio with his wife Sara, a freelance violinist, and their twins Lewis and Karl.
Glenn was born and raised in Berea, near Cleveland, and began playing drumset at the age of two; the drum kit a gift from his uncle - a high school band director in Amherst, Ohio. Glenn began formal lessons in fourth grade with Cleveland area jazz drummer and vibraphonist Harold Damas, with whom he studied for twelve years. Glenn began playing professionally in tenth grade with the Cleveland area band “The Fudales” and began teaching private students while at Berea High School. He studied at the Baldwin-Wallace College Summer Music Clinics and Ludwig Percussion Symposiums with Joe Morello, Alan Dawson, Leigh Howard Stevens, David Friedman, David Samuels, Al Payson, Charlie Christian, Fred Sanford, and many others.
From 1978-92 Glenn attended Baldwin-Wallace College; Conservatory, studied percussion with George Kiteley, and earned the Bachelor of Music in Percussion Performance. He was the Conservatory's Concerto Competition Winner in 1981, founded a vibe/marimba duo with student colleague Michael Wimberly, and freelanced in northeast Ohio with local bands, his own jazz quartet, and performed with the Tommy Dorsey Band.
From 1982-83 Glenn attended Eastern Illinois University, studied percussion with Johnny Lee Lane, jazz composition with Alan Horney, and served as jazz and percussion teaching assistant where he directed jazz ensemble II and a jazz combo, directed the marimba ensemble, taught vibraphone lessons, performed in the percussion ensemble, jazz ensemble I and combo I, and earned the Master of Arts in Percussion Performance. He performed with the Kevin Gainer Quartet, whom received the “Outstanding Combo” award at the Notre Dame Collegiate Jazz Festival and the Memphis State University Jazz Festival, and performed professionally around east-central Illinois. After graduation, Glenn did an extensive US tour with the 1940’s Radio Hour Show based in Dallas, Texas, recorded with the Air Force Band of Mid America, and taught at the Eastern Illinois University Summer Jazz Camps.
From 1984-86 and 87-88 Glenn studied percussion at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana with Tom Siwe, ethnomusicology with Bruno Nettl, Charles Capwell, Larry Gushee, and Tom Torino, and later earned the Doctor of Musical Arts in Percussion Performance and Literature in 1993. While at UI, Glenn was a member of John Garvey's world renowned Jazz Ensemble I, the Graduate Percussion Group, and the New Music Ensemble. His doctoral thesis was entitled “Jazz Drumming 1960-65; Transcriptions and Analysis” and Glenn was invited to lecture on this topic at the 1993 PASIC convention in Columbus. Glenn recorded Scott Wyatt’s multiple percussion and tape solo Time Mark (available at SteveWeissMusic.com), commercial jingles, and an album with singer/songwriter Nancy Hill. As a graduate teaching assistant he taught jazz improvisation courses, taught at the UI Summer Youth Music Jazz and Percussion Camps, and was adjunct percussion instructor at Parkland College in Champaign. As a freelance artist he appeared as soloist with the Champaign-Urbana Symphony, performed with the Springfield Symphony, The Rovers - country-rock band, jazz artists such as Laurence Hobgood, Michael Stryker, Bryan Lynch, Michael Weiss, Brad Kirk, Jeff Helgeson, Kim Richmond, Sean Flanigan, Les Elgart, Larry Elgart, Red Skelton, Engelbert Humperdinck, and at the International Association of Jazz Educator’s Convention in Detroit.
In 1986-87 Glenn accepted his first full-time university teaching position as tri-college visiting lecturer at Univerisity of Minnesota-Moorhead, North Dakota State University, and Concordia College where he taught applied percussion, percussion ensemble, percussion methods, and coached the NDSU drumline. He also served as principal timpani/percussion with the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony.
From 1988-94 Glenn lived in Lakewood, Ohio and was a freelance artist in the Cleveland area. He was a member of the world percussion quartet BATTU "artists in-residence" at Baldwin Wallace College. BATTU toured Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas and presented hundreds of performances and clinics for Young Audiences of Greater Cleveland. Glenn served as principal and assistant principal percussion with the award winning Cleveland Chamber Symphony, including myriad world premieres, tours to the Ball State University New Music Festival and Harvard University, and seven recordings on Gunther Schueller's GM label. Glenn also performed with Cleveland Ballet, Cleveland Opera, Ohio Chamber Orchestra, Colorado Music Festival in Boulder, Robert Page Singers, and appeared as soloist with the Baldwin-Wallace College Conservatory Symphony Orchestra. Glenn performed Cleveland Opera’s world premiere of Stewart Copeland’s opera Holy Blood and Crescent Moon and played with rock & roll legend Chuck Berry. Glenn completed two years of post-doctoral studies at Cleveland State University where he studied contemporary music with Edwin London, served as personnel manager and principal percussion with the New Music Associates - a professional ensemble in-residence at CSU, and studied orchestral percussion with Tom Freer and Jay Burnham of the Cleveland Orchestra. Glenn taught at the Baldwin-Wallace College Preparatory Department, taught timpani and drumset for twelve summers at the United States Percussion Camp, and taught world music at Cuyahoga Community College. In 1994 he was awarded a professional research grant from the Ohio Arts Council to study Afro-Cuban folkloric percussion with Roberto Vizcaino, Fermin Nani, and Santiago Nani at the National School of the Arts in Havana, Cuba.
From 1994-96 Glenn served as visiting assistant professor of percussion and jazz studies at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, where he taught applied percussion, percussion ensemble, percussion methods, jazz history, African Roots of American Music, directed big bands and combos, and founded an Afro-Cuban Folkloric Music course and Latin-Jazz Combo. He served as principal timpanist with the Lake Superior Chamber Orchestra, section percussion with the Duluth-Superior Symphon, and performed with jazz artists Anthony Cox, Harvey Weinapple, and Michael Pagan. Glenn also received a UMD faculty research grant to study at the Berklee College of Music World Percussion Festival with Giovanni Hidalgo, Horacio Hernandez, Glen Velez, Jamie Haddad, Victor Mendoza, and Trichi Sankaran.
Glenn began teaching at Youngstown State University in 1996 where he has built a renowned percussion studies program that attracts students from the United States, Europe, Japan, and Brazil.