David Schmalenberger joined the faculty of McNally Smith College of Music in St. Paul in 2006. Currently, he teaches percussion courses and lessons, and serves as Assistant Head of the Percussion Department. He received his DMA in Percussion Performance and World Music from West Virginia University, Master of Music Degree in Orchestral Percussion from the University of Michigan, and Bachelors Degree in Jazz Studies from Capital University.
Recently, Schmalenberger has performed on drumset with the JazzMN Big Band (with guest artists Kevin Mahogany, Conrad Herwig, Connie Evingson, and Charmin Michelle), Pooch’s Playhouse (jazz quintet), the Laura Caviani trio (with Gordy Johnson), the Benny Weinbeck trio, jazz vocalist Debbie Duncan, The Jesters (jazz quintet), and Synergy (a 10-piece R & B/Pop/Rock show band). Recent auxiliary percussion work in includes performances with the Vocal Essence Choral Ensemble, and various shows/musicals (e.g. Ordway Theatres’ production of “The Drowsy Chaperone,” and “Suessical the Musical” at the Minneapolis Children’s Theatre).
Schmalenberger has also performed on drumset/percussion with SCHAG (jazz percussion duo with Dave Hagedorn), John Scofield, Marvin Stamm, The BigTime Jazz Orchestra, the Cedar Avenue Big Band, Tim Ries, Larry Grenadier, Richard Davis, Steve Turre, the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra, Cab Calloway, Rufus Reid, the Fifth Dimension, and The Mills Brothers. David was a featured soloist and principal timpanist with both the Lake Superior Chamber Orchestra (Duluth, MN) and the Duluth-Superior Symphony Orchestra. He also toured with the Summit Brass Ensemble and the Intergalatic Contemporary Ensemble (I.C.E.). Tour highlights included a performance with I.C.E. at the London Jazz Festival, and favorable reviews in the New York Times and Los Angeles Times.
David's articles "Ed Blackwell's African Influences" and "African Rhythm: Perceptions of a Westerner" were both published in the Percussive Notes periodical. His drumset composition,"I Remember,"is published by HoneyRock Music. David has presented scholarly papers and clinics for the Percussive Arts Society (PAS), Society for American Music (SAM), the Minnesota Music Educators Association (MMEA), and the International Association of Jazz Education (IAJE).
He has studied the traditional music of Africa and the Diaspora for several years, including travels to Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Trinidad, and Brazil. Schmalenberger has recorded with the Garth Alper trio, I.C.E., the Bigtime Jazz Orchestra, the Duluth-Superior Symphony Orchestra, Equilibrium, and SCHAG. David is also active as a clinician offering workshops in jazz, percussion, and world music. He has served as adjudicator/clinician for several jazz festivals including those in Eau Claire, WI, Mankato, MN, Lamberton, MN, Roseville, MN, and Greeley, Colorado.
Schmalenberger endorses Paiste cymbals.