Brian Zator is Assistant Professor of Music and the Director of Percussion at Texas A&M University-Commerce. His responsibilities include the classical and marching percussion ensembles, the “Panimation” steel drum band, 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, Dr. Zator has performed with the Baylor Woodwind Quintet at PASIC 2008, the Texas A&M-Commerce Wind Ensemble at the 2005 CBDNA national conference and the Birdville H.S. Percussion Ensemble at PASIC 2005. He was also one of the soloists with the University of North Texas Wind Symphony at PASIC 2006. Other solo appearances have included the Conroe and The Woodlands Symphonies, the Texas A&M-Commerce Symphonic Band, the Lone Star Wind Orchestra, and at several Texas Day of Percussion events. He is active giving clinics and concerts at various colleges, high schools and state festivals including TMEA, TBA, the California Band Directors Association convention, and the Winter Music Festival in Vale Veneto, Brazil. The Texas A&M University-Commerce percussion ensemble, under the direction of Brian Zator, has a CD entitled “Sohmon III: New and Unknown Works of Minoru Miki”. These pieces were performed at the 2006 PASIC on their showcase performance of the same title. Dr. Zator and the ensemble are proud to bring these unknown works to the public. All pieces are first-time recordings.
Dr. Zator has performed with an assortment of percussion ensembles including Keiko Abe and Ensemble Clair, Primary Colors, the Michigan Percussion Group, and the Bain Percussion Group at PASIC 2003. Additionally, he is 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 and serves on the Keyboard and Percussion Ensemble Committees. He provides reviews for Percussive Notes and has adjudicated the PAS International Percussion Ensemble and Composition Competitions. Zator has two keyboard ensemble arrangements published by Go Fish Music: “Spring” from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and “Cassiopeia Marimbana” by Minoru Miki. He is proud to be a Dynasty, Innovative Percussion, Sabian and Evans performing artist and clinician.
The Dallas Festival of Modern Music thanks Mr. Zator for his role as artistic advisor for the festival.