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Mark Lighthiser
Tulane University
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Mark D. Lighthiser, an Innovative Percussion Artist (b.1972, Columbus) enjoys a prolific career as a percussionist, teacher, composer and conductor. Mr. Lighthiser began developing his appreciation for a wide variety of musical genres as a child, studying, playing and performing music in Columbus, Ohio. As a member of the Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps from 1991-93, he won the World Championships and the High Percussion award. Throughout the early 1990s he toured and recorded with his band, Funks Hybrid, playing hundreds of shows in dozens of venues throughout Michigan, Indiana and Ohio. He also served as the Director of Percussion Studies at Hasllet High School and worked as a percussion instructor for many other award winning ensembles such as the BOA Champion Plymouth Canton High School, Pickerington High School and the World Champion Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps.

During the late nineties, Mr. Lighthiser played extensively in the Portland, Oregon Metro area with numerous professional jazz, rock, and folk bands. It was during this time that he developed his mastery of commercial music and began studies in world percussion. He also premiered his composition, Uno Mas, for percussion ensemble with the Portland Community College Chamber Ensemble. In the spring of 2004, he completed his Masters of Music degree in Percussion Performance from The University of Oregon, where he studied with Charles Dowd and Gary Hobbs. While at the University of Oregon he was a member of the award winning Oregon Percussion Ensemble, principal percussionist with the Oregon Wind Ensemble, the University Symphony Orchestra, the Hundreth Monkey new music group, the Eugene Symphony Orchestra, and the Oregon Bach Festival. He has also performed with the Emerald City Jazz Kings, Tommy Tune and many other professional ensembles. He also served as the Director of Percussion Studies for the Oregon Festival of American Music and as Co-director for the Willamette High School Marching Band and Percussion Theater program.

Since 2006 Mr. Lighthiser has lived in the crescent city of New Orleans where he serves as the Assistant Marching Band Director and Director of Marching Percussion for Tulane University. Mr. Lighthiser also serves as music director for Synergy, an independent open class indoor ensemble, works with the Louisiana State Champion drum line at Vandebilt Catholic High School and works with the Destrehan High School indoor percussion program. He also plays with Joe Schwa and the Scarlet Letterman, the New Orleans Jazz Project and Gravy in New Orleans while maintaining a professional relationship with numerous ensembles in Oregon and throughout the United States.