B I O
Dr. Gretchen McNamara is Senior Lecturer of Trombone at Wright State University, a position she has held since 2007. In addition to her responsibilities with the trombone studio, she also teaches Instrumental Music Education and supervises Field Placements. Dr. McNamara has presented clinics (2012, 2013, 2015) and performed as a member of the Wright State University Faculty Brass Quintet (2009, 2017) and Wright State University Chamber Orchestra (2012) at the Ohio Music Educator's Association State Conference. She has been a featured artist/clinician at the International Trombone Festival (2022, 2021, 2019, 2014); Midwest Trombone and Euphonium Conference, Charleston, IL (2014, 2016); Big 12 Trombone Conference, Lubbock, Texas (2013); and artist in residence at the BrassChix Festival at the University of St. Thomas (2010, 2011). Recently, she has served as the guest conductor of the OMEA District 16 Honor Band (2017) OMEA District 12 Honor Middle School Jazz Ensemble (2016), OMEA District 14 Honor Middle School Jazz Ensemble (2015), OMEA District 12 Honor Symphonic Band (2014), and has served as an invited guest clinician/adjudicator for the Weekend of Jazz in Beavercreek, Ohio (2014). Dr. McNamara has also been a featured soloist with the Wright State University Wind Ensemble, Kettering (Ohio) Civic Band, Wright State University Symphonic Band, Xavier University’s Symphonic Winds (Ohio) and the Shoreline Concert Band (Washington). She has also performed with the Middletown Symphony Orchestra (OH), Lima Symphony Orchestra (OH) and the Newark-Granville Symphony Orchestra (OH).
Dr. McNamara's pedagogical interests include efficiency of movement and sound production as well as mental focus of attention. She has explored various systems including Alexander Technique, Body Mapping, Functional Movement, Physical Therapy, and Mindfulness practices and is currently investigating how the discipline of physics can inform brass pedagogy and instruction.
Outside of her position at Wright State University, Dr. McNamara maintains a private trombone studio with students from the greater Dayton area. Dr. McNamara has served on the faculty of Xavier University and the University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music Preparatory Department.
A native of Seattle, Washington Dr. McNamara has earned a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree from the University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music, a Master of Music degree from Kent State University, and a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Washington. Before beginning the DMA, Dr. McNamara was the director of bands at Patapsco High School and Center for the Arts in Baltimore, Maryland. Her principle instructors include David Vining, JoDee Davis, Mathew Guilford and Stuart Dempster.
Performing Concerto for Trombone and Wind Band by Dana Wilson with the WSU Wind Sympohny
Dr. Mac's high school students rise to the top around the state.
Left: Gabe Gilliland
OMEA All-State Orchestra 2020
Below: Kylie Bayliss and Vincent Moniaci winning the WSU 2020 Honor Band Festival Performance Scholarship for Fall 2020 admission