Dr. Mary Thornton, Professor of Trumpet, joined the faculty of Texas A&M-Corpus Christi in the Fall of 2008 having previously taught at Del Mar College in Corpus Christi, TX, and St. Norbert College in De Pere, WI. She holds degrees from the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University, the Cleveland Institute of Music, the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and she did additional studies in performance at the Aspen Music Festival, and the AIMS Festival in Graz, Austria.
Active as an orchestral musician, Dr. Thornton holds positions with the Corpus Christi Symphony, the Mid-Texas Symphony, and the Victoria Symphony. Prior to these appointments she held positions with the Green Bay Symphony, the Madison Symphony, the Orchestra of the State of Mexico (Toluca, Mexico), the Oshkosh Symphony and the Ohio Light Opera. Additional orchestral experience includes performances with the symphony orchestras of San Antonio, Charleston, La Crosse, Manitowoc, the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra and the opera companies of San Antonio and Madison. She has appeared on two CD's released by the Madison Symphony Orchestra on the Ion Record label, "Live from the Oscar Mayer Theatre: Highlights from a Decade of DeMain", and "A Madison Christmas". On the MSR Classics label she appears in "A Cathedral Christmas" with the Corpus Christi Cathedral, and on the Beauport Classics label in a cd of works by Robert Bradshaw entitled, "Out of the Quiet". On Summit Records, she appears with the groundbreaking group, Drumpetello, in their 2018 debut recording, "The Beginning of Everything".
As a commercial musician, Dr. Thornton has performed for numerous local productions of Broadway shows including "Showboat", "Fiddler on the Roof", "Man from La Mancha", and "The Sound of Music". She has worked with varied artists such as Garrison Keillor, Pink Martini, the Four Tops, Moody Blues, Riders in the Sky, and the Temptations.
As an educator, Dr. Thornton has presented lectures and recital performances at the Texas Music Educator Association convention, the International Trumpet Guild Conference, many high schools and universities, and has served on the faculty of numerous summer music programs including the Music for All Summer Symposium, the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, the UW-Green Bay Summer Music Clinic, and the UW-Madison Summer Music Clinic. As a contributor to the International Trumpet Guild Journal, Dr. Thornton has written articles about the history of the Cleveland Orchestra trumpet section, the "Concerto for Trumpet" by John Williams, the music of Lauren Bernofsky, and the International Women's Brass Conference.
Active as a chamber musician, Dr. Thornton was a member of Quantum Brass, participants in Chamber Music America's Rural Residency Program funded by the National Endowment for the Arts. As co-founder and trumpeter with the Corpus Christi Brass Quintet and the innovative trio Drumpetello, Mary has a busy chamber music calendar. An avid promoter of new music, Dr. Thornton premiered the piano score version of Lauren Bernofsky's "Concerto for Trumpet" and subsequently commissioned and premiered Bernofsky's "Trio for Brass". Neil Flory wrote "Four Pieces for Trumpet and Percussion" for Dr. Thornton and the Del Mar College Percussion Ensemble. Dr. Thornton premiered "The Trumpeter Dreams of Music" for trumpet and electroacoustic soundscape written by Neil Flory at the 2010 International Trumpet Guild Convention in Sydney, Australia. As a member of Drumpetello, Mary has been involved with commissions from James Stephenson, Thomas Osborne, Lauren Bernofsky, Matthew Schoendorff, David Gillingham, Brett Kroening, P Kellach Waddle, and Erberk Erilymaz. Drumpetello toured Scotland in 2015, and performed at the 2016 International Trumpet Guild Conference in Anaheim, CA.
Dr. Thornton's professional affiliations include the International Trumpet Guild, the Texas Music Educator's Association, and the American Federation of Musicians where she serves on the Executive Board of Local 23.
Mary Thornton is a Yamaha Performing Artist.