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Rick Schadt Tundra Line Eric Schwierske

Photo Credit: Eric Schwierske

Rick Schadt is a freelance percussionist residing in Mukwonago, Wisconsin. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Music Performance at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, studying percussion with Anthony Di Sanza, studio pedagogy with Teryl Dobbs, and Jazz & Composition with Les Thimmig. During that time, Rick was involved in numerous world and regional premieres of works for Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, and Percussion Ensemble including in 2011 the North American premiere of Per Nørgård’s massive work, “A Light Hour”. In 2010, Rick also performed at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention with the UW-World Percussion Ensemble as winners of the PAS World Percussion Ensemble Competition. Rick has more than a decade of performing experience at Lambeau Field as a member of the Tundra Line, the official drumline of the Green Bay Packers.

Rick currently serves as adjunct faculty at Carroll University in Waukesha, WI where he teaches applied percussion lessons and serves as the drumline instructor for the Carroll University Marching Band. In addition to his roles at Carroll, Rick also teaches private lessons out of his studio in Mukwonago, WI. He regularly has over 20 private students, many of whom are routinely selected to perform in regional/state honors ensembles, collegiate music programs, competitive DCI/WGI marching ensembles, and receive perfect scores/exemplary performer recognition at solo & ensemble. Actively involved in local schools, Rick has developed and continues to help teach the percussion curriculum for the 7th Grade Percussion, 8th Grade Percussion, and Concert Percussion classes in the Mukwonago Area School District. Additionally, he is the program director for Blue2 Percussion, Mukwonago Area School District's extracurricular percussion ensemble program, and the Percussion Caption Head for the Mukwonago High School Marching Band.

Continually involved in the marching arts, Rick has taught several award-winning high school marching ensembles. Since 2012, his competitive ensembles have consistently won “Best Percussion” awards, being named circuit percussion champions five times, including Mukwonago’s most recent back-to-back WSMA State Percussion titles in 2022 and 2023. His ensembles have also captured overall circuit championships three times, most recently Lighthouse Brigade of Racine’s first outright MACBDA title in 2017. 

Rick has served as a show designer for many of the above marching ensembles, arranging winds & percussion in addition to visual design & drill writing. Many of his ensembles regularly obtain the highest scores in the "Composition" sub-caption. His arrangements and original compositions have been performed at the Youth In Music Marching Band Championships in Minneapolis, MN, Winterguard International (WGI) Regionals, and various other circuit championships. Equally comfortable in the concert hall, Rick also composes and arranges for chamber ensembles and wind band and has served as an adjudicator for percussion competitions and local solo & ensemble festivals. He is an active member of the Percussive Arts Society and regularly participates in the commissioning of new works for percussion.

Rick’s interests in music also extend into the realm of instrument repair and construction, including having built his own 5-octave marimba that he uses daily for teaching. He also spends much of his free time watching sports or composing with assistance from his cat, Grump.

Rick is an educational endorser of Salyers Percussion & Encore Mallets.

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