Brett William Dietz is Associate Professor of Percussion at the Louisiana State University School of Music. He is the music director of Hamiruge (the LSU Percussion Group). He earned the Bachelor of Music in Percussion and the Master of Music in Composition/Theory from the Mary Pappert School of Music at Duquesne University. In 2004, Dietz earned his Doctorate of Music from Northwestern University. He has studied percussion with Jack DiIanni, Andrew Reamer, Stanley Leonard, and Michael Burritt while his principal composition teachers include Joseph W. Jenkins, David Stock, and Jay Alan Yim.
Dietz is in demand as a clinician and soloist throughout the United States and abroad. Recent performances have taken him Paris, France (perKumania International Percussion Festival), Bongkok, Thailand (College Music Society International Conference), and Genral Roca, Argentina (Patagonia International Percussion Festival). He has performed at several Percussive Arts Society International Conventions and is a founding member of the Tempus Fugit Percussion Ensemble. TFPE has performed throughout the United States and Europe and has released two compact discs (Tempus Fugit and Push Button, Turn Crank) that have received great critical acclaim. Dietz’s new compact disk, Seven Ghosts was released in 2006. He performs with and conducts Hamiruge on Stanley Leonard’s new recording Collage and also performs on Michael Burritt’s newest release, Waking Dreams.
An avid composer, Dietz’s music has been performed throughout the United States, Europe, East Asia and Australia by numerous ensembles including the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Portland Symphony Orchestra, Eastman Wind Ensemble, National Wind Ensemble, Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble, River City Brass Band, Northwestern University Wind Symphony, Louisiana State University Wind Ensemble, Duquesne University Symphonic Wind Ensemble, the University of Scranton Wind Symphony, the Northwestern University Percussion Ensemble, Ju Percussion Ensemble, Malmo Percussion Group, and the University of Kentucky Percussion Ensemble. His compositions have been featured at the 1998 College Band Directors National Association Eastern Division Conference, and the 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2007 Percussive Arts Society International Convention. Dietz’s composition, Pandora’s Box received its New York Premiere at Carnegie Hall by the National Wind Ensemble conducted by H. Robert Reynolds. His opera Headcase was premiered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Called “haunting and powerful – a remarkably sophisticated score that blends words, music and visual displays to touch the heart and mind” by the Pittsburgh Tribune Review, the opera relives the story of the stroke Dietz suffered in 2002.
He was a recipient of the 2005 Merrill Jones Young Composers Band Composition Contest, the 2002 H. Robert Reynolds Composition Contest, 3rd Place Winner of the 2002 Percussive Arts Society Composition Contest, and the 2001 Pittsburgh Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Arts. His composition five-0 for brass quintet received an award from WFMT (Chicago Classical Radio) and was premiered live on the air as part of the station’s 50th anniversary (2001).
In addition to his work at Louisiana State University, he has also served on the music faculties of Duquesne University, Westminster College (New Wilmington, PA), and the Merit School of Music in Chicago. Dietz endorses Dynasty Percussion, Zildjian Cymbals, and Innovative Percussion. When not composing, performing, or teaching, he spends all of his free time with his wife Jennifer, his cats George and Two, and working on his golf game!