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Dr. J. Nick Smith

J. Nick Smith is Assistant Professor and Associate Director of Bands and Director of Athletic Bands for the School of Music & Dance at Eastern Michigan University. Smith recently completed his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Wind Band Conducting with emphasis in Choral Conducting at the University of Minnesota with primary teachers Emily Threinen and Kathy Saltzman Romey. Prior to his doctoral studies, he received his Master of Music degree in Wind Band Conducting from the University of Michigan with primary teacher Michael Haithcock

Dr. Smith's full biography.

Director, Marching Band

Dr. Mary K. Schneider

Director of Bands

Mary K. Schneider is Professor of Conducting and Director of Bands at Eastern Michigan University where she conducts the Wind Symphony, teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in conducting and music education, directs the Music Now contemporary music festival, and guides the vision of the comprehensive band program at EMU. In addition, Dr. Schneider was appointed and began serving as interim Associate Director of the School of Music & Dance in 2018. Prior to her appointment at Eastern Michigan University a decade ago, Dr. Schneider served on the music faculty at the University of Minnesota for three years.


Dr. Schneider's full biography.




Professor John Dorsey


John Dorsey, professor of percussion at Eastern Michigan University since 1997, maintains an active teaching and performing career. His teaching duties include applied percussion, percussion ensemble, African ensemble, percussion methods class and instructing the marching band drumline. Mr. Dorsey is currently principal percussionist for the Michigan Opera Theatre Orchestra, the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra and the Saginaw Bay Orchestra.

Professor Dorsey's full biography.


Professor Jason Ihnat


Jason Ihnat is an active teacher, performer, composer and arranger. As a part-time lecturer of music theory at Eastern Michigan University, his teaching responsibilities have included aural skills, music fundamentals, and music theory. In addition, he has been the drumline arranger and instructor for the EMU Marching Band since 2001. As a performer, Mr. Ihnat performs frequently with the Dearborn Symphony Orchestra, Michigan Philharmonic and Macomb Symphony Orchestra.

Professor Ihnat's full biography.


Chelsea Lee


Chelsea joined the Eastern Michigan Marching Band staff as the Color Guard instructor in 2019. Prior to her work with the EMUMB, Chelsea taught Color Guard at Chelsea High School and was section leader of the University of Michigan Marching Band's flagline. Chelsea holds a Bachelor's degree in Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience and Master of Social Work degree from the University of Michigan.


Courtney Smith


Courtney graduated with a degree in Elementary  Education from The University of Alabama. During her time there, she was a Crimsonette in "The Million Dollar Band" for five seasons, and also a member of the Crimson Cabaret Dance Team for two seasons. Her experiences with choreographing and coaching range from work with elementary through collegiate-aged dancers and twirlers since 2010.


Eric Pereira

Graduate Student Teaching Assistant

Adriano Estraiotto

Graduate Student Teaching Assistant

Eric Braun


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Maria Eloff

Administrative Assistant/Event Planner

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