The Mansfield University Concert Wind Ensemble is a select group of approximately 48 woodwind, brass, and percussion players who perform the most outstanding wind-band literature under the direction of Director of Bands, Dr. Adam F. Brennan. One of the oldest wind ensemble's in the country, the MU Concert Wind Ensemble performs four to five times annually on and off campus. Each year in the Fall semester the ensemble tours over a three day period and also performs at regional conventions and special events. In addition, the Concert Wind Ensemble records and produces a compact disc of select literature each year. Most recently, the ensemble had two recordings deemed to be eligible for 2014 Grammy Nominations in seven categories. These included Malachi: A Celebration of a Special Life and Critical Speed: The Music of Greg Danner. Additional recordings by the ensemble include Ecstatic Vision, Concord, Music from the Endless Mountains, Strike Up the Bands, This Could be the Start of Something Big, Tenebrae (Dark Hours), Sun and Shade, and Resonance. Membership is not limited to music majors, but an audition is required. The ensemble is involved in commissioning and premiering works of fine composers such as Michael Colgrass, David Maslanka, David R. Gillingham, John Stevens, Mike Mowers, Carolyn Bremer, the ensemble's director- Adam F. Brennan, and others. Students interested in this ensemble should contact Dr. Adam F. Brennan at the start of each semester via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Mansfield University Jazz Ensemble is a select group of 16-18 students under the direction of Dan Foster. This award winning band appears at major festivals, conferences and conventions. In addition, they make annual tours throughout the entire northeastern United States and in 2012 enjoyed international tour with a series of concerts and clinics in Edinburgh and London, including playing at Spice of Life, a premiere London jazz club.
Along with the Mansfieldians, they have produced three CDs with their newest, Afterglow, with guest artists Bob Sneider, guitar and Ernie Krivda, tenor sax. Krivda is featured in "Cease and Desist" by Kim Richmond, one of a number of commissions the band has made over the years.
The MU Jazz Ensemble also hosts the annual MU Jazz Festival, as well as having other guest soloists perform with the band. The list of visiting jazz artists reads like a “Who’s Who” in jazz and includes Wayne Bergeron, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, Tom Harrell, DIVA, Tim Hagans, Chris Potter, Denis DiBlasio, George Rabbai, Alan Broadbent, Phil Woods, Chris Vadala, Kenny Warner, the Airmen of Note, Ingrid Jensen, Bob Mintzer, Jiggs Whigham, Randy Brecker, Bill Watrous, Carl Allen, John Riley, DIVA, Ryan Kisor, Michael Davis, the Commodores, Jim Snidero, Clay Jenkins, Phil Woods and many, many others!
Added to the department in 1999, the Jazz Lab Band is comprised of music majors and non music majors who wish to further their experiences in jazz performance. This group performs on campus two to three times per year. Membership is by audition, but to afford opportunities to more students there are alternate positions available.