The Clemson University Symphonic Band is a select wind ensemble that performs contemporary and traditional concert band literature. Frequent campus concert and tour appearances have earned high national praise for this band. Previous tours have included performances at the 2012 London Olympics, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Charleston, S.C., New Orleans’ Jackson Square, and Walt Disney World. As the premier wind and percussion performing ensemble at Clemson University, the Symphonic Band seeks to educate its performers and audience through the performance of music literature of the highest quality.
Dr. Mark J. Spede is Professor, Director of Bands, Director of Tiger Band, and Conductor of the Symphonic Band at Clemson University, where he administrates the band program (symphonic, athletic, and jazz bands). Dr. Spede is the recipient of the Clemson University 2009 Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching (College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities), and three Clemson University Board of Trustees Awards for Faculty Excellence (2008, 2009, and 2012). He teaches a number of courses, including two for the Calhoun Honors College: aesthetics of music and science of music. In 2012, Dr. Spede conducted the Clemson University Symphonic Band at venues in London, England, for the Summer Olympic Games. Also in 2012, he founded the Clemson Faculty Jazz Quintet, for which he plays drums. Dr. Spede earned a Bachelor of Music from the University of Michigan (1984), a Master of Music from Ball State University (1988), and a Doctor of Musical Arts from The University of Texas at Austin (1998). He has served the College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA) in a number of capacities. From 2003 to 2005, Dr. Spede served as state chair for South Carolina. He also served on the CBDNA “New Era Think Tank” from 2005 to 2007, and served as chair of the “Athletic Band Task Force” from 2005 to 2009. He served as President of the Southern Division of CBDNA (encompassing eleven southern states) and was recently elected National Vice President and will rise to National President in 2019. In addition, he has served as president of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Band Directors Association. Dr. Spede previously served on the faculties at The University of Texas at Austin (1998-1999) and the University of Florida in Gainesville (1989-1995) as Assistant Director of Bands. At Florida, he also taught studio percussion. As a freelance arranger, Dr. Spede has written extensively for high school and college marching bands (over 200 arrangements). His wind band arrangements and transcriptions are published by Peer Music, Schirmer, Boosey and Hawkes, and Carl Fischer, including “D.C. Fanfare” by John Corigliano, “Red Cape Tango” by Michael Daugherty, “Wedding Dances from Bandanna” by Daron Hagen, “Acrostic Song” by David Del Tredici, and “Millennium Canons” by Kevin Puts. He served as Assistant Conductor of the Dallas Wind Symphony, where he also helped produce two of their recordings. His professional performing experience includes orchestra (principal percussion in the Gainesville Chamber Orchestra, Muncie Symphony Orchestra, Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra, Flint Symphony Orchestra), jazz (performing with such artists as Randy Brecker, Ray Brown, Pete Christlieb, Dennis DiBlasio, Duffy Jackson, Dave Pell, Bobby Shew, Marvin Stamm, Bill Watrous, Ernie Watts and Phil Wilson), as well as at Walt Disney World.