West Texas A&M University

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John Shanks
John G. Shanks

John G. Shanks, DMA

Assistant Professor of Music

Office: Mary Moody Northen Hall, Room 140
Email: jshanks@wtamu.edu
Phone: 806-651-2824
Home Page: www.jgshanks.com

Professional Profile

Dr. Shanks joined the School of Music in 2014. He received a BM in Trombone Performance from Youngstown State University in 2006, an MM in Trombone Performance from Indiana University in 2008 and a DMA in Trombone Performance from the University of Alabama in 2014.  Before arriving at WT, Dr. Shanks was the Principal Trombone of the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra and Adjunct Instructor of Trombone at Jackson State University in Jackson, MS. He has enjoyed a wide-ranging musical career, performing with the Glenn Miller Orchestra, American Wind Symphony, Alabama Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, the international tour of the musical Hairspray, and aboard two Norwegian Cruise Line vessels, among many other groups.

Teaching and Related Service

Dr. Shanks teaches applied lessons to all trombone majors, conducts the WTAMU Trombone Choir, performs in the WT Faculty Brass Quintet, and leads weekly studio classes. He also serves as Principal Trombone of the Amarillo Symphony Orchestra.

Shanks was chosen as one of eight featured Participants out of a large international field at the prestigious Alessi Seminar in 2013 and 2015. He was named the winner of the National Solo Competition held at the Eastern Trombone Workshop in Washington DC in 2012, and placed as a finalist in the same competition in 2011. In 2016, he was the only American tenor trombonist to appear at the First International Tenor and Bass Trombone Competition in Budapest, Hungary. His invited performances include the American Trombone Workshop, International Trombone Festival, Southeast Trombone Symposium, TMEA Conference, and at various colleges and universities. He has served as an adjudicator for the American Trombone Workshop National Solo Contest, the ENKOR International Solo and Chamber Music competitions, and the TMEA All-State ensembles.  Dr. Shanks is proud to serve as a Performing Artist for S.E. Shires Trombones.

Research and Creative Activity

Dr. Shanks’ research interests include performance practice, fundamental development as applied to virtuosic technique, adapting works for other instruments to play on the trombone, as well as quality new music for the trombone.

Personal Sketch

Dr. Shanks makes his home in Amarillo, which he shares with two spoiled cats (Orange Cat and Black Cat) and the world’s friendliest pit bull, Brienne the Beauty. In his free time, Dr. Shanks enjoys Alabama Crimson Tide football, home brewing, home coffee roasting, reading, and his back patio.