2020 SCMEA Sr. County Band Conductor - Mr. Mark Lortz
Composer, Arranger, Percussionist, Educator
Mark Lortz has earned accolades in every facet of his music career as a composer, arranger, percussionist and educator.
Mark Lortz has earned accolades as a composer, arranger, performer and educator. In the fall of 2017, he was appointed the first Stevenson University (Stevenson, MD) Interim Director of Music administering the entire music program and retaining his duties as Director of Bands. In addition to his position at Stevenson University, he has served as adjunct Music Education Professor at McDaniel and Carroll Community Colleges, is currently a Vic Firth Marching Percussion Specialist and Scholastic Educator and brass arranger for the Drum Corps Associates Drum & Bugle Corps, The Reading Buccaneers. From 1996 to 2011, he was Fine Arts Department Chair and Band and Orchestra Director at Westminster High School in Westminster, MD. Under his leadership, Westminster’s Marching Band won several Bands of America Regional Marching Band Championship titles. Its music department was honored for Lortz’s exemplary music programs by the National Association for Music Education and the Maryland Music Educators Association and was a Grammy Signature School semifinalist. School Band & Orchestra magazine recognized Lortz as one of the “50 Directors Who Make a Difference.”
Mr. Lortz’s original music has premiered at the Mid West Band and Orchestra Clinic, the Bands of America National Percussion Festival and the College Band Directors National Association. “The Caw of the Wild,” his commissioned composition for the Baltimore Ravens NFL football team’s marching band, is performed at every Ravens home game. His music is published by the FJH Music Company, Northeastern Music Publications, Peermusic, TRN and Wingert-Jones music publisher. Lortz’s compositions have received awards from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) and laudatory reviews in Gramophone and The Instrumentalist. They also made Bandworld’s Top 100 list of band compositions and sheet music company JW Pepper’s Editor’s Choice list. He arranges marching band music for high school marching bands throughout the United States. He has assisted in the design, direction and preparation for the United States Army Field Band and Jazz Ambassadors Norwegian Military Tattoo performance and The United States Naval Academy Drum and Bugle Corps inter-academy championships. In addition to composing, Mr. Lortz adjudicates, lectures and guest conducts honor bands, orchestras and community ensembles throughout the mid-Atlantic region.
Mr. Lortz earned a University Fellowship at the Boyer College of Music and Dance of Temple University, where he is pursuing a doctorate of music education. He has earned degrees in percussion performance, music education and music composition from The Peabody Conservatory of Music of the Johns Hopkins University. He was Associate Music Director and Principal Percussionist for the North American tour of Phantom of the Opera and Principal Percussionist with the international performing ensemble, The Dallas Brass. He has performed and recorded with premier orchestras, including the Baltimore Symphony under the direction of David Zinman and Marin Alsop.
Mr. Lortz lives in Harford County, Maryland, with his wife, Cate, and their dog, Nolie.