Dr. Brian Gardiner is a versatile percussionist based in Portland, Oregon. He’s known as a classical percussionist, a drum set player, and teacher with impact.
He holds a section percussion position with the Portland Opera, Oregon Coast Music Festival Orchestra, and is principal percussionist with the Vancouver (Washington) Symphony Orchestra.
He also plays drum set with the spaghetti western band Federale and rock band Pellet Gun. Federale’s music has been featured in several television commercials and films, such as in 2014’s A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (which also features Brian’s own composition, “Thirsty’s Return”), and in The Bad Batch.
Brian’s freelance classical work includes performances with the Oregon Symphony, Third Angle New Music Ensemble, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Portland Columbia Symphony, Astoria Music Festival, Oregon Bach Festival, and the Portland Gay Men’s Chorus. He has performed under the batons of Gerard Schwarz, Carlos Kalmar, Roberto Abbado, David Robertson, Michael Stern, Cliff Colnot, David Effron, Murry Sidlin, Uri Mayer, and Miguel Harth-Bedoya, and has appeared on stage with Béla Flek and the Flektones, Rufus Wainwright, Andrea Bocelli, Joshua Bell, Randy Rainbow, and Byron Stripling.
As a supporter of new music, Brian co-founded the Portland Percussion Group with Chris Whyte, Aaron Jester, and Brett Paschal. The group performs regularly throughout the Northwest and has commissioned several new works. Brian has also performed with the Oregon Marimba Quartet, the Oregon Percussion Ensemble, and co-founded the APEX Percussion duo with David Constantine.
Brian is a highly sought-after session musician, performing with regional and national recording artists such as Strange Holiday, Joel Gion, and Matthew Tow of the Lovetones. He contributed to Collin Hegna’s score for an episode of the National Geographic channel’s “Breakthrough” entitled “Curing Cancer.”
As an educator, he serves as an Adjunct Professor of Music at Portland Community College, Warner Pacific College, and, University of Portland, and Concordia University. Brian also works with private students of all ages at Revival Drum Shop in Portland. He has taught percussion camps and master classes, and is an invited clinician at public schools and universities across the United States.
In 2011, Brian earned his Doctor of Music degree in Percussion Performance at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music under the guidance of Professors John Tafoya, Kevin Bobo, and Steve Houghton. He also studied with retired Indiana University professors Anthony Cirone and Gerald Carlyss. Brian holds a Master of Music degree With Honors from the University of Oregon, having studied with the late Charles Dowd.