UToledo School of Visual and Performing Arts

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UT Percussion Faculty receives doctorate

Dr. Olman Piedra, Summer Jazz Institute

Dr. Olman Piedra coaching a student during the
UT Summer Jazz Institute

 

Dr. Olman E Piedra, the assistant professor of Percussion and Jazz studies at The University of Toledo, received his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in December from Bowling Green State University. Previously, he received two Master’s in Music degrees, in Percussion Performance and in Improvisation from the University of Michigan, and a BM from Baylor University. Dr. Piedra is an educational artist/clinician for Remo drumheads and Innovative Percussion.

As an active and versatile jazz, contemporary, Latin American, and concert musician, Dr. Piedra can be heard on William Bolcom’s Grammy award winning album “Songs Of Innocence And Of Experience” with Leonard Slatkin, conductor, on His Name Is Alive’s “Detrola”, and “Sweet Earth Flower, a tribute to Marion Brown”, NOMO’s “New Tones”, “The Dreamer” by jazz guitarist/composer Paul Cohn, “Reaching for the Moon” with Morgen Stiegler, “Gran Danzón” with Martha Councell-Vargas, and with the University of Toledo Jazz faculty ensemble CrossCurrents on their debut album on Summit Records.

Dr. Piedra left Costa Rica in 1998 to further his music studies and pursue a musical career in the United States. He has performed with a variety of ensembles, including the Sphinx Orchestra (principal percussion), the National Symphony Orchestra of Costa Rica, the Waco Symphony Orchestra, the American Wind Symphony Orchestra, the Toledo Jazz Orchestra, the Ensamble de Percusión Costa Rica, the Toledo Symphony Percussion Trio, Italian pop artist Patrizio Buanne, NOMO (toured around the United States, Canada, and Europe), Roland Vazquez’ Latin Jazz Combo (Percussive Arts Society International Convention), vocalist Lauren Kinhan (from The New York Voices), Ken Thomson and Slow/fast, David Bixler’s I-75 ensemble, and the University of Toledo jazz faculty group at the third annual JEN convention in Louisville, KY. Olman has also been performing alongside Grammy Award winning artists The New York Voices at Bowling Green State University’s vocal jazz camp since 2009.


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