MICHAEL MARKOWSKI (b. 1986) is fully qualified to watch movies and cartoons. In 2010, he successfully graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Film from Arizona State University.
While Markowski has never studied music at a university, he has studied privately with his mentors, Jon Gomez, and Dr. Karl Schindler. However, he has continued his education by participating in a number of programs including "the art of orchestration" with television and film orchestrator, Steven Scott Smalley, and in 2008, was invited to be a part of the National Band Association's Young Composer and Conductor Mentorship program.
In 2006, his work for concert band, Shadow Rituals, was honored with first prize in the first Frank Ticheli Composition Contest, sponsored by Manhattan Beach Music. The work is now published by Manhattan Beach Music and is on several state lists including the Texas Prescribed Music List. The piece has received a number of prestigious performances since its premiere by the Arizona State University Wind Symphony, some of which include the Midwest Clinic in Chicago by the VanderCook College of Music and by the 4A Honor Band at the 2008 Texas Music Educators Association Conference, Poteet High School. Recordings of Shadow Rituals can be heard on the Mark Masters label performed by the University of North Texas Symphonic Band under the direction of Dennis Fisher and Outberzt performed by the Rutgers Wind Ensemble, Dr. William Berz, conductor.
Other notable performances include The Phoenix Symphony Orchestra, the US Air Force Band of the Golden West, the US Air Force Band of Mid-America, Arizona State University, California State University-Fullerton, Rutgers University, San Jose State University, The University of North Texas, Arrowhead Union High School, The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Youth Wind Ensembles, and the Austin Symphonic Band.
He has received commissions for new works from a number of organizations including CBDNA, The Consortium for the Advancement of Wind Band Literature, The Lesbian and Gay Band Association, Arrowhead Union High School and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Youth Wind Ensembles, Bethel High School, and other consortiums of schools.
A brief insight into Markowski's creative process can be found in a contributing chapter of Composers on Composing for Band, Vol. IV: Young Emerging Composers, published by GIA Music. His work has also been analyzed in the Teaching Music Through Performance in Band series (Volume 7).
When life is not about band, Markowski enjoys writing weird songs with friends which he pens under the pseudonym Tune & Lube. The band released their first studio-recorded EP in Spring 2011 called The Way She Goes, which features guest vocals by Canadian actor, John Dunsworth (best known for playing Mr. Lahey in Trailer Park Boys), in the titular track. The EP is available for digital download on iTunes, Amazon.com, and CDBaby.
Some of these early tunes inspired a short movie-musical about Late Night talk show host, Conan O'Brien. NBC found out about Conan: The Musical in early 2008 and aired a short bit where Mr. O'Brien heartwarmingly mocks the project, making such wonderful jabs as "What the hell was that?" and "That is a show no one will go to see!" Joel Goddard, the show's off-kilter but lovable announcer for 16 years, describes the aforementioned Tune & Lube songs as "Catchy. And writers tell me that's 1,000 times harder to accomplish than people think."
Once a month, Markowski helps produce sketch comedy shows at the Tempe Center for the Arts with the members of Bully Mammoth sketch comedy. He has been the group's go-to guy for running the show's technical demands since the group was founded in 2007.
For the last several years, he has arranged, co-composed, and been music director for an original musical celebrating the life of Judy Garland aptly titled Judy: The Musical. In April 2011, the musical was staged in Tempe, Arizona and starred actress and singer Paige O'Hara (best known for playing Belle in Disney's Beauty and the Beast).
Over the years, Markowski has also recently inherited a number of notable nick-names that include (but are not limited to) Mark Markowski, Mark Mikeowski, Mike Mikeowski, 'kowski, Marchowski, and Big Cat.
He is a member of ASCAP and currently lives in Astoria, New York.
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