Mark Morton is the Associate Professor of Double Bass at Texas Tech University, and Principal Bass with the Lubbock Symphony. For 23 years, he was a member of the Columbus (Ohio) Symphony Orchestra – 14 years as principal bass and 9 years as assistant principal bass. Dr. Morton is the first-prize winner of the 1990 International Society of Bassists Solo Competition held in New York City, and is the author of the popular “Dr. Morton” series of double bass technique books, and numerous articles in all important trade periodicals.
A busy recitalist and concerto performer, Morton has soloed in Europe, South America, Canada, and the United States, and has been a featured double bass soloist on radio broadcasts including NPR's "Performance Today," WGBH in Boston, and WQXR in New York. His critically acclaimed Thresholds and Russian Rendezvous CDs, have become reference recordings of standard double bass repertoire. He also shares a CD with bassist Gary Karr of double bass music by Paul Ramsier. It was with that CD that Roger Dettmer of Classical CD Reviews proclaimed him as “a most artistic representative of the new generation developed in the last half century.”
Morton has played under the direction of many conductors including Leonard Bernstein, Lorin Maazel, Alexander Schneider, Hans Graf, Gunther Herbig, Vladimir Spivakov, Maxim Shostakovich, Gunther Sculler, Marvin Hamlisch, John Williams, Henry Mancini and Mitch Miller. Dr. Morton has twice appeared as the guest principal bass of the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, Canada, Pinchas Zuckerman, Music Director. He has performed in Alice Tully and Avery Fischer Halls in Lincoln Center, the Musikverein in Vienna, La Scala in Milan, and has appeared in Carnegie Hall over 30 times.
Additionally, Mark Morton is an accomplished pianist, having appeared as piano concerto soloist with several orchestras, including the Houston Symphony Orchestra. His recent release on Albany Records, Bottesini Greatest Hits features Morton accompanying himself on piano, for which American Record Review says, “Mark Morton is a fine player on both instruments, and the music is lovely…” Fanfare commented, “His intonation is fine, and he certainly handles the bravura passages well.”
Formerly, Dr. Morton was instructor of double bass at Capital University, and Ohio Wesleyan University, and was the assistant double bass instructor for Gary Karr at the Hartt School of Music in Hartford, Connecticut. In the summer, he teaches and performs alongside members of the Los Angeles, Chicago, Montreal, and Vancouver Symphony Orchestras at PRISMA in, Powell River, British Columbia
In summer 2012, Morton traveled to Parma, Italy where, in the Conservatorio di Musica ‘A. Boito’, the Giovanni Bottesini manuscripts are housed. There, he took 972 digital photographs of these manuscripts and is currently cataloguing them for the Biblioteca Palatina in Parma, preserving these priceless documents in perpetuity. He plans to return to Italy in summer 2014 to photograph the remaining manuscripts, and teach at the InterHarmony International Music Festival in Arcidosso, Tuscany.
Dr. Morton earned the undergraduate and graduate degrees from the Juilliard School in New York, being the only bassist to earn the Artist Diploma, Bachelor, Master and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees all from Juilliard. His principal teachers include David Walter, Channing Robbins, Stuart Sankey, Eugene Levinson and Winston Budrow.
When playing with the LSO, Morton performs on a double bass made by Joseph and Antonio Gagliano in Naples Italy in 1805.
Mark Morton is a D’Addario Artist.