Mike Assad, percussion[B.M., University of Kentucky; M.M., University of Memphis]
Mike Assad has performed as a freelance drummer and percussionist for more than a decade. Since moving to Memphis in 2001, he has performed regularly with local artists such as, Neptune‘s Army featuring Ed Finney, the Charlie Wood Trio, and the Michael Jeffery Stevens Trio. He has also performed with various big bands and orchestras including the New Memphis Hepcats, the Memphis Jazz Orchestra, and the Corinth Symphony Orchestra. Mike has studied with Miles Osland, Steve Davis, Donnie Patterson, Ed Murray, Jack Cooper, and Tim Goodwin. He has performed in master classes for clinicians such as Michael Brecker, Benny Golson, James Moody, John Riley, Stanley Cowell, Stanley Turrentine, Jerry Coker, Sir Rolland Hanna, and Clark Terry. Mike was also chosen by audition for the Richard Davis Jazz Residency Workshop Series presented by the Lexington Arts Council. Currently, Mike also teaches drum set at the University of Memphis and the Memphis Drum Shop.
David Carlisle, percussion
[B.M., Eastman School of Music; M.M., University of Toronto]
David Carlisle is the Principal Percussionist with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Mei-Ann Chen. He has performed regularly as the timpanist and percussionist with the Eroica Ensemble, under the direction of Michael Gilbert. He has performed with the IRIS Orchestra, under the direction of Michael Stern, and with the national touring productions of Dream Girls and Young Frankenstein at the Orpheum Theatre in Memphis.
As a multi-percussionist in contemporary chamber music settings, Carlisle has performed with composer Steve Reich, Nexus, Percussion Group Cincinnati, the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, the Berkeley Contemporary Chamber Players, the Chamber Music Society of Sacramento, the American Festival of New Music, Earplay, Empyrean Ensemble, Kokoro Dance, Joe Ink Dance, Queen of Pudding Music Theatre and the Luna Nova Ensemble. Carlisle performed Hanz Werner Henze’s opera El Cimarrón at the Banff Centre and as part of the Autumn Leaf Festival in Toronto.
As a drumset player, Carlisle recorded at Skywalker Sound with producer Mark Willsher, played with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra as part of a featured jazz quartet, under the direction of David Amram, and performed the Toronto production of Miss Saigon. Carlisle performed drumset and contracted the musicians for a national touring production of Smoky Joe’s Cafe at the Ford Center in Oxford, Mississippi.
Pianist Adrienne Park and Carlisle co-founded DivaDi, who appeared as guest artists at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention (PASIC), performing Carlisle′s percussion and drumset composition entitled “Mad Cow.” DivaDi will perform “Mad Cow” as part of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra’s Opus One Series. DivaDi performs original compositions and new works created on a collaborative basis with current composers.
Carlisle recorded music for a short film entitled My Heart is in Memphis as part of a series of short films created as an ongoing collaboration between the Greater Memphis Chamber and the Memphis Symphony Orchestra. He has recorded numerous CDs for Albany Records and has appeared with CRI and Spool records.
Carlisle currently instructs percussion at Rhodes College in Memphis and has instructed percussion at the University of California at Davis and Berkeley. He is on faculty at the University of Mississippi, where he has taught a wide variety of courses: Introduction to World Music Cultures, Introduction to Music Technology, Musicianship and Harmony and Introduction to Music.
Carlisle completed a Bachelor of Music at the Eastman School of Music with a Performer′s Certificate, a Master of Music at the University of Toronto, and he is completing a D.M.A. at the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati.