Michael Barranco is a New York-based musician currently residing in Fairfax, Virginia as a D.M.A. candidate in Percussion Performance at George Mason University. Michael’s prior schooling includes a Master’s degree in Music Performance from Illinois State University in Normal, Illinois and a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from The College of Saint Rose in Albany, New York. He is a multifaceted musician, active in the fields of performance, education, and instrument repair.
At George Mason, Michael holds the titles of Graduate Lecturer, Graduate Teaching Assistant, and Graduate Peer Advisor, leading world music courses, coaching percussion ensembles, and assisting graduate students with their imperative needs. In addition to instructing world music, he has led courses in percussion methods, percussion instruction, and percussion ensembles at the collegiate level. Most notably, Michael led the percussion department at the University of Illinois Springfield for their 2017-2018 school year. In his current position at Cameron Elementary School, Michael teaches K-6 general music, leading the next generation of musicians in song, movement, and percussion.
Michael's current research focuses on the timbre qualities of acoustic percussion instruments. He is an active member of the Network for Diversity in Concert Percussion, College Music Society, Percussive Arts Society, and the National Association for Music Education, in which he was elected President of Saint Rose’s chapter from 2013-2014.
As a performer, Michael currently holds the position of principal percussion with the American Festival Pops Orchestra and Washington Balalaika Orchestra. Orchestrally, he has performed with the Capital City Symphony, Symphony Orchestra of Northern Virginia, Illinois Symphony Orchestra, Peoria Symphony Orchestra, and Saint Rose Camerata. Michael has also performed with chamber ensembles, brass bands, choirs, wind ensembles, and is an active performer in musical theatre pits. His current percussion studies are led by John Spirtas of the Washington National Opera, with prior instruction conducted by John Kilkenny, Jon Bisesi, David Collier, Ben Stiers, Mark Foster, and Cliff Brucker.
Michael’s instrument repair experience began in 2015 at John Keal Music in Albany, New York. He continued for the next four years at Carl’s Pro Band in Bloomington, Illinois, learning brass, woodwind, and percussion repair from the Thacker family. Currently, Michael is involved in freelance percussion repair in Virginia, D.C., and Maryland areas, repairing instruments for members of the United States Naval Academy and Washington National Opera.
Michael is endorsed by Artifact Percussion.