Mitch Markovich

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Mitch Markovich
Birth name Mitch Markovich, Jr.
Born (1944-08-19)August 19, 1944
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Genres drum and bugle corps, marching band, rock, latin, jazz, gospel, and contemporary Christian music
Occupation(s) Musical artist, educator, clinician, and composer
Years active 1957-present
Associated acts Chicago Royal Airs, Chicago Cavaliers, The Vanguard, Argonne Rebels, Nisei Ambassadors, etc
Notable instruments
Marching snare drum

Mitch Markovich is an internationally known American percussionist, composer, educator, and clinician in the areas of rudimental drumming, marching percussion, drum and bugle corps, and marching band. He is best known for his intensive marching snare drum solo compositions and record-setting performances, entitled "Tornado"[RCS 1] and "Stamina",[RCS 2] and for his percussion quartet composition entitled "Four Horsemen".[RCS 3] Markovich's contributions to the style, notation,[1] composition, and performance of percussion have endured over the last five decades.[2][3][4][5][6]

He is the only person to ever become three-time consecutive undefeated National Champion, and to become five-time consecutive undefeated Illinois State snare champion.[2][3] He contributed to, or was directly responsible for twelve National and twenty-three State, Individual, and Group Championships in the drum and bugle corps marching percussion field. He was a marching member of the National Champion Chicago Cavaliers, and he has instructed, composed, and consulted with them and with other drum corps including the following: National Champion Chicago Royal Airs; the National Champion Argonne Rebels from Great Bend, Kansas; the Santa Clara Vanguard from California; and the Nisei Ambassadors from Chicago.[2]

Markovich is currently a clinician and concert artist for Pearl Drums and the Evans Drum Head Company.[2][7] He is a drum set specialist in many styles including rock, latin, jazz, gospel, and contemporary Christian praise and worship music.

Bibliography[edit]

Musical[edit]

portrait of Rudimental Contest Series sheet music, on a marching drum
Rudimental Contest Series sheet music, perched atop a modern marching snare drum, the cover featuring an illustration of Frank Arsenault

Mitch Markovich is the composer of a ten-piece series entitled Rudimental Contest Series, published in 1966. This collection of rudimental solos, duets, and quartets ranges from "Easy" to "Difficult"; and it features various combinations of the snare drum, tenor drum, and bass drum.

The collection's greatest enduring impact upon percussion culture may be found in its more extremely athletically rigorous solos for marching snare drum, such as "Stamina"[RCS 2] and "Tornado".[RCS 1] Continuously used as audition and contest pieces over the last five decades, they are widely considered to be traditional standards.[8] Notoriously difficult even for experts, these solos have served as authoritative benchmarks of physical performance and academic correctness. "Tornado" was cited as an advanced traditional standard in the rudimental snare section of Gregg Bissonette's training video entitled Private Lesson.[9]

Rudimental Contest Series

Title Description Tempo Grade Source
"Stamina" rudimental solo for snare drum 132 BPM 3"Difficult" [RCS 2]
"Tornado" rudimental solo for snare drum 130 BPM 3"Difficult" [RCS 1]
"Four Horsemen" rudimental quartet for two snare drums, tenor drum, and bass drum 152 BPM 2"Medium" [RCS 3]
"The Winner" rudimental solo for snare drum 128 BPM 2"Medium" [RCS 4]
"Just Two" rudimental duet for snare drums 128 BPM 2"Medium" [RCS 5]
"Teamwork" rudimental quartet for two snare drums, tenor drum, and bass drum 128 BPM 2"Medium" [RCS 6]
"Fancy Four" rudimental quartet for snare drum, tenor drum, and two bass drums 104 BPM 1"Easy" [RCS 7]
"Three Minus One" rudimental duet for snare drum, tenor drum, and two bass drums 104 BPM 1"Easy" [RCS 8]
"Countdown" rudimental solo for snare drum 104 BPM 2"Easy" [RCS 9]
"High Flyer" rudimental solo for snare drum 104 BPM 1"Easy" [RCS 10]

Literature[edit]

Mitch Markovich has authored many articles for the annual Ludwig Magazine, where he has actively detailed and encouraged the replication of his core techniques and introduced entirely new things. He has consistently assured players that his music is not physically impossible, given the optimal technique.[4][5][1][6]

Discography[edit]

Mitch Markovich discography
VFW Nationals Drum and Bugle Corps Finals, Vol. 2 album cover
An example of Markovich's performances
Releases
Live albums  ?
Recording Date Title Description Source
1960 VFW Nationals Drum and Bugle Corps Finals Briggs Stadium, Detroit, Michigan [10]
1961 VFW Nationals Drum and Bugle Corps Finals [11]
June 3, 1962 1962 Preview of Champions, Vol. 2 Roosevelt Stadium, Jersey City, New Jersey [12]
March 30, 1968 Civic Opera House Chicago, Illinois (the source tape of Markovich's and Arsenault's solos was physically degraded, and thus disincluded from the CD) [13]

Reception[edit]

“Stamina” is one of Markovich’s many rudimental masterpieces. As the title simply implies, it requires demanding technique, strength, and a great deal of stamina ... As the drummer is sweating and struggling to make it to the finish, the audience sees fast and loud drumming that is a simple crowd pleaser.

— Michael Mazzullo, recital program notes from the Howard County Public School System High School G/T Music Program[8]

At first glance his solos appeared too difficult, maybe even unplayable. ... Mitch’s solos were the snare equivalent of Mount Everest to a mountain climber; conquer them because they are there! Do, or die!

— Rick Beckham, owner of RudimentalDrumming.com, open letter recommending Markovich for inclusion into the Drum Corps International Hall of Fame[3]

I was fortunate to be in the audience for this special night [in 1968] at the Civic Opera House. The Glenview (Chicago), IL-based Drum Corps Digest magazine presented this showcase featuring 10 outstanding drum and bugle corps, along with two featured soloists - Mitch Markovich and Frank Arsenault.

— Steve Vickers, publisher, Drum Corps World newspaper[13]

Now, what have we done with our American NARD rudiments? Well, for one, I am very proud of the fact that we have the best drummers in the world -- be it dance, concert or military. ... I could name many more of the famous percussionists who are rudimentally trained -- such as Bobby Christian, his son Norman Christian, Frank Arsenault, Mitch Markovich, etc., etc.

— William F. Ludwig, Sr., then President of the National Association of Rudimental Drummers, The Importance of Drum Rudiments[6]

Career[edit]

Student career[edit]

Mitch Markovich studied music at Indiana University under George Gaber, and at The American Conservatory of Music in Chicago under James Dutton. He studied briefly under famed Ludwig Drum Company Clinician and National Champion Frank Arsenault, whose likeness would be later depicted upon the covers of Markovich's famed Rudimental Contest Series. He received his Bachelor of Music Degree from Fort Hays State University.

Teaching career[edit]

Mitch Markovich first developed his international reputation in percussion, as a clinician and educational representative for the Ludwig Drum Company. He has taught and performed at major universities throughout the United States including Indiana University, Ohio State University, the University of Southern California, the University of Texas, the University of Missouri at Kansas City Conservatory of Music, the University of Wisconsin, and Northwestern University. He was the Head of the Percussion Department at Fort Hays State University. He has been on the faculty of the Joy School of Performing Arts.

He has headed clinics and performances at the International Festival of Percussion Art in Warsaw, Poland in 2004, and 2005.[14] He was a featured clinician at the Percussive Arts Society International Conventions in Columbus, Ohio and at Nashville, Tennessee. He was clinician and guest soloist at the 2002 High School All-State Festival of Performance at Arizona State University. He was guest clinician and judge at the University of Texas at El Paso.

Mitch Markovich was a member[15] of the National Championship winning Chicago Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps in the 1960s.

He was the President of the National Association of Rudimental Drummers (N.A.R.D.) from 1976 to 1977.[16]

He has performed at the Civic Opera House, and with Dick Schory’s Percussion Pops Orchestra at Chicago's Orchestra Hall.

Markovich would go on to further mature his percussion and entrepreneurial abilities by utilizing advanced self-improvement methodologies.

Today, he conducts private lessons via Internet videoconference, is a Pearl clinician,[2] is an endorser of Evans drum heads,[7] and serves in a number of Christian church bands and projects.

Notable students[edit]

Markovich's history of students includes university department heads, professional players, teachers, and performers. The following is not an exhaustive list:

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Markovich, Mitch (1972). "Updating Rudimental Notation, Part 1". Ludwig Drummer (in English) (Chicago, Illinois: Ludwig) (1972). ISSN 0459-9810. OCLC 6887564. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Mitch Markovich: Overview". Pearl Drum. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  3. ^ a b c "Mitch Markovich not chosen this year for DCI HoF". rudimentaldrumming.com. 2011-04-21. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  4. ^ a b Markovich, Mitch. "Rudimentally Yours". Ludwig Drummer (Chicago, Illinois: Ludwig). 
  5. ^ a b Markovich, Mitch. "Stick Positioning for Better Control". Ludwig Drummer (Chicago, Ilinois: Ludwig). 
  6. ^ a b c Ludwig, Sr., William F. (1972). "The Importance of Drum Rudiments". Ludwig Drummer (in English) (Chicago, Illinois: Ludwig) (1972). ISSN 0459-9810. OCLC 6887564. 
  7. ^ a b "Evans Drum Head Artists". Evans Drum Heads. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  8. ^ a b "Howard County Public School System High School G/T Music Program". Digication & Google. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  9. ^ Gregg Bissonette (1990). Private Lesson (VHS) (in English). New York: DCI Music Video. OCLC 22866873. Retrieved 2013-03-13. 
  10. ^ Mitch Markovich. 1960 VFW Nationals (monaural Audio CD, Booklet, and Tray Card). Vol. 2 (61st Annual Convention ed.). Fleetwood Sounds. FCLP2019. 
  11. ^ Mitch Markovich. 1961 - VFW Nationals (stereo Audio CD, Booklet, and Tray Card). Vol. 1 (digital remaster ed.). Fleetwood Sounds. FCLP2048. 
  12. ^ Mitch Markovich. 1962 Preview of Champions (stereo Audio CD). Vol. 2 (digital remaster ed.). Fleetwood Sounds. PC62S-2. 
  13. ^ a b Mitch Markovich, Frank Arsenault. Fantasy in Brass II (two audio CDs, liner notes) (digital remaster ed.). Madison, Wisconsin: Drum Corps World. "I was fortunate to be in the audience for this special night at the Civic Opera House. The Glenview (Chicago), IL-based Drum Corps Digest magazine presented this showcase featuring 10 outstanding drum and bugle corps, along with two featured soloists - Mitch Markovich and Frank Arsenault." 
  14. ^ "Pearl Drummer's Forum public calendar". Pearl Drummers' Forum. Retrieved February 6, 2013. 
  15. ^ "The Cavaliers: History: 1960, Part 8 of 13". The Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  16. ^ "History of N.A.R.D.". National Association of Rudimental Drummers. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  17. ^ "Dean Kranzler biography at FHSU". Fort Hays State University. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  18. ^ "Dean Kranzler biography at Bethany College". Bethany College (Kansas). Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  19. ^ "Dean Kranzler biography at Kansas Wesleyan University". Kansas Wesleyan University. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  20. ^ "Instructor biographies at S.M. Hanson Music". S.M. Hanson Music. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  21. ^ Gary Demuth (2007-07-25). "For Those About to Rock". Salina Journal. Retrieved 2013-02-24. 
  22. ^ "Hays High grad has hand in new percussion shaker". Hays Daily News. 2011-05-30. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
Rudimental Contest Series sources
  1. ^ a b c Markovich, Mitch (1966). Tornado (musical score, booklet). Rudimental Contest Series. Glenview, Ill.: Creative Music, ©1966. OCLC 7895690. 10-305. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c Markovich, Mitch (1966). Stamina (musical score, booklet). Rudimental Contest Series. Glenview, Ill.: Creative Music, ©1966. OCLC 223543970. 10-303. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b Markovich, Mitch (1966). Four Horsemen (musical score, booklet). Rudimental Contest Series. Glenview, Ill.: Creative Music, ©1966. OCLC 31334049. 10-332. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 
  4. ^ Markovich, Mitch (1966). The Winner (musical score, booklet). Rudimental Contest Series. Glenview, Ill.: Creative Music, ©1966. OCLC 18396862. 10-304. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 
  5. ^ Markovich, Mitch (1966). Just Two (musical score, booklet). Rudimental Contest Series. Glenview, Ill.: Creative Music, ©1966. OCLC 221069704. 10-320. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 
  6. ^ Markovich, Mitch (1966). Teamwork (musical score, booklet). Rudimental Contest Series. Glenview, Ill.: Creative Music, ©1966. OCLC 31021512. 10-333. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 
  7. ^ Markovich, Mitch (1966). Fancy Four (musical score, booklet). Rudimental Contest Series. Glenview, Ill.: Creative Music, ©1966. OCLC 31021525. 10-331. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 
  8. ^ Markovich, Mitch (1966). Three Minus One (musical score, booklet). Rudimental Contest Series. Glenview, Ill.: Creative Music, ©1966. OCLC 221430739. 10-321. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 
  9. ^ Markovich, Mitch (1966). Countdown (musical score, booklet). Rudimental Contest Series. Glenview, Ill.: Creative Music, ©1966. OCLC 31491703. 10-304. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 
  10. ^ Markovich, Mitch (1966). High Flyer (musical score, booklet). Rudimental Contest Series. Glenview, Ill.: Creative Music, ©1966. OCLC 31403367. 10-307. Retrieved February 5, 2013. 

External links[edit]