Michael Noonan is a multi-instrumentalist and composer performing on vibraphone, piano, marimba and trombone. Mike became active as a performer and composer while studying at Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA, where he completed his undergraduate degree in Professional Music graduating magna cum laude. He received his graduate degree in jazz studies and composition from the University of North Texas in Denton, TX. Mike has studied mallets extensively with Gary Burton, Ed Saindon, Martha Sallet, Nora Davenport, Robert Schietroma and Ronald Barnett. He began earnestly studying composition during his undergraduate years and credits Ken Pullig, Greg Hopkins, Charlie Banacos, Neil Slater, Newell Brown and Larry Austin as his composition teachers. Mike continues to improvise and compose using techniques developed through experiences with his instructional influences as well as through independent study. He is a two-time recipient of the Maryland State Arts Council’s Individual Artist Award.
Mike has been the leader of the Unified Jazz Ensemble since its inception in 1992, a group that continues to perform and record original music and maintain an active performance schedule as an ensemble. Through Mike’s leadership, the UJE has been awarded multiple grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Doris Duke Foundation, Chamber Music America, the Maryland State Arts Council as well as many other arts organizations (both locally and nationally) for their efforts in arts education and performance. During his career, Mike has shared the stage with many jazz legends and toured the USA, Canada, Japan and South Korea as a jazz artist. Currently, Mike is busy as a freelance musician in the Baltimore/Annapolis/Washington D.C. metropolitan area with the UJE as well as the many other great jazz musicians and vocalists living in the mid-Atlantic region. He has served as an adjunct professor in jazz studies, percussion, orchestration and performance at several colleges and universities in the Midwest and Northeast regions as well as being a clinician endorsed as a mallet artist by Innovative Percussion.