Dwight Banks, Composer/Trumpet

When Words Fail…Music Speaks


Dwight Charles Banks

370 Nathan Hale Road

West Palm Beach, FL 33405




Ph.D in Music Composition, University of California, Berkeley, Spring, 2003.

  • Dissertation: Scenes and Events for Orchestra.
  • Dissertation advisors: Dr. Olly Wilson (chair), Professor Edwin Dugger, Dr. John Thow.
  • Qualifying Exam Topics:
    • Twentieth Century Literature and its Development
    • The Chief Problems Occupying Composers Today
  • Discussion and analysis of the following pieces:
    • Lutoslawski: Mi Parti
    • Stravinsky: Agon
    • Varese: Octandre
    • Ravel: Chansons Madecasses
    • Webern: Symphonie Opus 21
    • Ellington: Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue

Master of Arts in Music Composition, University of California, Berkeley, 1999.

  • Primary studies with Olly Wilson and Jorge Liderman. Additional teachers include Edwin Dugger, John Thow, Richard Taruskin, Edmund Campion and Cindy Cox.

Master of Music in Composition, California State University, Northridge,1995.

  • Thesis: Expansions for Orchestra
  • Thesis committee: Dr. Daniel Kessner (chair), Dr. William Toutant, Professor George Heussenstamm
  • Primary instructors were Daniel Kessner, Aurelio De la Vega, Beverly Grigsby, Frank Campo, and George Skapski

Bachelor of Fine Arts, City College of New York, 1982.

  • Majored in Jazz performance, composition and arranging. Primary instructors were John Lewis, Edgar Summerlin, Roger Verdesi, Ruth Rowen, Jack Shapiro, Robert Norden

Teaching Experience:

  • 2017-present-Adjunct Professor, University of Miami, Frost School of Music
  • Courses taught:
  • Musicianship Skills
  • Music Theory
  • Orchestration
  • 2007-2013-Private Music Instructor
  • Courses taught:
    • Midi Sequencing
    • Trumpet
    • Fundamentals of Music

Additional Teaching Experience:

  • 2000-2003-Music Instructor and Program Director, Camp William Mendenhall
  • Courses taught:
    • Midi Sequencing
    • Audio Recording
    • Music Fundamentals
    • Music Appreciation
    • Small Instrumental Combo/Percussion Ensemble
  • 1999-2003; Graduate Student Instructor, U.C.Berkeley
      • Introduction to Music History
      • Musicianship
      • Piano
      • Music Fundamentals

Additional Administrative And Performance Experience:

  • 2016-present:
  • Member of Symphonic Band of the Palm Beaches and Orchid City Brass
  • 2006-2013-Member of Officer’s Council and National Treasurer, National Association of Composers, USA
  • 2005-2006-Treasurer, National Association of Composers, USA, Los Angeles Chapter
  • Personnel Manager, U.C. Berkeley Symphony Orchestra, 2001
  • 1982-1987: Performances with McCoy Tyner, Joe Henderson, Kenny Burrell, Charlie Palmieri

Fellowships, Honors and Awards:

  • James Irvine Foundation Honorary Fellowship, 2005
  • ASCAPlus Awards, ASCAP, 2005 thru 2016
  • Winner, Detroit Symphony Orchestra Emerging Composers
  • Program, for orchestral piece Pupil of the Eye, March 2002
  • Composition Selection Committee, Artists Enclave at I-Park, 2007
  • Resident Artist Fellowship, Artists Enclave at I-Park, September, 2006
  • Resident Artist Fellowship, Djerassi Resident Artists Program, May 2005
  • Louise Patterson Award for Academic Achievement 1998, 1999
  • Graduate Opportunity Program Fellowship 1997-1999
  • Graduate Opportunity Program Dissertation Fellowship 2001-2002

Primary Trumpet Instructors:

  • William Fielder (Professor Emeritus of Trumpet, Rutgers University)
  • Malcolm Mc Nab (Professor of Trumpet, UCLA and studio musician)
  • Roy Poper (Professor of Trumpet, Oberlin College, former principal trumpet, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra )
  • William Bing (Professor Emeritus of Trumpet, California State University, Northridge, former co- principal trumpet, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra)
  • Roy Stevens
  • Bob Mc Coy (former lead trumpet, N.B.C. Orchestra and studio musician)
  • Vincent Penzarella (Professor of Trumpet, Manhattan School of Music, Mannes School of Music, former second trumpet, New York Philharmonic)
  • Melvyn Broiles (Professor Emeritus of Trumpet, Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, former principal trumpet, Metropolitan Opera)
  • Carmine Caruso

Selected Conferences, Papers and Presentations:

  • Presentation of compositions and performance of electroacoustic work, Leeway, for trumpet and electronics, Artists Enclave at I-Park, October, 2006
  • Presentation on Compositional Techniques of Witold Lutoslawski, Society of Composers Inc. National Conference, September, 2006, Hawaii Inter national Conference on Arts and Humanities, January, 2006
  • Presentation of My Compositions, Djerassi Resident Artists Program, May, 2005
  • Presentation on Duke Ellington and his Extended Works, Hawaii International Conference on Arts and Humanities, January, 2005
  • Presentation and Performance of Tre for Flute, Piano and Cello, Society of Composers Inc. Region VI Conference, January, 2004
  • Witold Lutoslawski: A Comparison of Compositional Techniques in Mi Parti, Epitaph for Oboe and Piano and Chain 3, University of California, Berkeley, 2000
  • A Study of Duke Ellington’s Approach to Extended Form From 1935-1937 With an Emphasis on Reminiscing in Tempo and Diminuendo and Crescendo i n Blue, University of California, Berkeley, 2000. Research included analyses of Ellington’s original manuscripts at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C.
  • The Emergence of the Third Stream Movement in America, University of California, Berkeley, 1998
  • Ludwig van Beethoven String Quartet Opus 131: An Analysis of Movements Six and Seven. University of California, Berkeley, 1998
  • The Great Trilogy: An Analysis of Symphonies 39, 40 , and 41 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, California State University, Northridge, 1994
  • An Analysis of String Quartet in B Flat Major Opus 130, First Movement by Ludwig Van Beethoven, California State University, 1993.
  • Analysis of String Quartet #4, First Movement, by Bela Bartók, California State University, Northridge, 1993
  • The Harmonic Concept of Olivier Messiaen’s Musical Language, California State University, 1992

Professional Affiliations:

  • The College Music Society
  • American Composers Forum
  • National Association of Composers,USA
  • Center for Black Music Research
  • American Music Center
  • Society of Composers, Inc.

Additional Information:

  • Knowledge of Finale, Digital Performer, Pro Tools, MAX/MSP, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Powerpoint, Macintosh and Windows operating systems.
  • Experience as a performer in a diversity of musical styles with specialization in classical and jazz.  Instruments: B-flat trumpet, C trumpet, piccolo trumpet, fluegelhorn

Representative List of Compositions:

  • Quadrilateral Equation for Four Trumpets, 2020
  • Connect the Dots for Brass Quintet, 2020
  • Episode Variations, For Symphonic Band, 2017
  • Thinking Outside of the Box, for Chamber Orchestra, 2016
  • Triple Endeavors for Three Trumpets, 2013
  • Three Etudes for Solo Trumpet, 2012
  • Convergences for Chamber Orchestra, 2009
  • On A Conveyor Belt for Small Ensemble, 2007
  • Tablets for Mixed Chorus and Piano, 2006 (7 min)
  • LEEWAY for Trumpet and electronics, 2006 (7 min)
  • String Quartet #2, 2005 (9 min)
  • ANCHORS for Flute, Bass Clarinet, Violin, Piano and Percussion, 2005 (7 min)
  • Composite Sketches 2 for Trumpet, Clarinet, Cello, Piano and Percussion, 2003 (7 min)
  • Scenes and Events for Orchestra, 2003 (17 min)
  • Pupil of the Eye, 2001 (12 min) – Premiered by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, 2002; additional performance by the South Arkansas Symphony, 2003
  • Songs for Unity for Mezzo Soprano and Piano, 2000 (6 min) – Premiered at NACUSA Los Angeles Chapter concert, April, 2006
  • Tre, for Flute, Cello and Piano, 1999 (9 min) – Performed at University of California, Berkeley, 1999, 2002; Additional performance at the Society of Composers Region VI Conference, January, 2004
  • Piano Suite, 1998 (7 min)
  • Tentet for Wind and Percussion Ensemble, 1997 (8 min)
  • Miniature Suite for Wind and String Quintet, 1997 (10 min) – Premiered at University of California, Berkeley, 1997
  • Expansions for Orchestra, 1995 (17 min)
  • Triplex, for Clarinet, Cello and Piano, 1994 (11 min) – Premiered at California State University, Northridge, 1995, University of California, Berkeley, 1996
  • Composite Sketches, for Oboe and Bassoon, 1993 (10 min) – Premiered at California State University, Northridge, 1993
  • Interactions for Trumpet and Vibraphone, 1993 (9 min) – Premiered at California State University, Northridge, 1995
  • String Quartet, 1992 (17 min) – Premiered at California State University, Northridge, 1993
  • Music For Brass Quintet and Percussion, 1992 (10 min) – Premiered at California State University, Northridge, 1993
  • Light Invocation, for electronics,1992 (6 min) – Premiered at California State University, Northridge, 1993
  • Blue Magic Dance, for electronics,1991 (7 min) – Premiered at California State University, Northridge, 1993


Letters of Reference File is available upon request from:

The Chronicle of Higher Education

Chronicle Jobs [jobs@chronicle.com]

The following persons have written letters of recommendation on my behalf and may be contacted for reference:

Dr. Olly Wilson, Professor Emeritus
C/O Music Department
University of California, Berkeley
104 Morrison Hall #1200
Berkeley,CA 94720-1200
(510) 642-2678

Edwin Dugger, Professor Emeritus
C/O Music Department
University of California, Berkeley
104 Morrison Hall # 1200,
Berkeley, CA 94720-1200
(510) 642-2678

Dr. John Thow, Professor
Music Department
University of California, Berkeley
104 Morrison Hall # 1200,
Berkeley, CA 94720-1200
(510) 642-2678

Additional References:

Dr. Deon Price
Professor Emeritus, El Camino College

Dr. Daniel Kessner
Professor Emeritus, California State University, Northridge