John Dorsey

A photo of John Dorsey

Professor of Percussion


334 Alexander


[email protected]


John Dorsey, professor of percussion at Eastern Michigan University since 1997, maintains an active teaching and performing career. His teaching duties include applied percussion, percussion ensemble, African ensemble, percussion methods class and instructing the marching band drumline. Mr. Dorsey is currently principal percussionist for the Michigan Opera Theatre Orchestra, the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra and the Saginaw Bay Orchestra. He also performs for professional local and national musical theater productions, national touring artists, percussion groups, jazz/dance bands and other freelance engagements in the metropolitan Detroit and Southeast Michigan area. He has frequently performed, toured and recorded with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, the Detroit Concert Band and performed as guest soloist with regional and school concert bands and orchestras. Mr. Dorsey continues to regularly present at music conferences, conduct educational clinics and adjudicate at festivals and competitions throughout the region. In addition, he has served on the advisory board and as president of the Michigan Chapter of the Percussive Arts Society. Previously held faculty positions include Concordia College, Adrian College, Siena Heights College and the New England Music Camp. He has recordings on the Naxos, Musical Heritage Society, Equilibrium, Detroit Symphony Orchestra and Brassjar labels and is a member of the Vic Firth Education Team and an artist endorser of Sabian Cymbals. Mr. Dorsey received his Master of Music degree in Percussion Performance from the University of Michigan where he studied with Charles Owen and his Bachelor of Music degree in Percussion Performance from the University of St. Thomas in Houston, Texas where he studied with Richard Brown and Phil Kraus.

Learn more about Percussion Studies at EMU.


  • MM, Percussion Performance, University of Michigan
  • BM, Percussion Performance, University of St. Thomas


  • Applied percussion
  • Percussion class
  • Percussion ensemble
  • African ensemble