About the Band 

The Melody Masters Big Band engages music-loving audiences at music festivals, private and public community events, and for businesses or schools throughout the nine county Rochester, NY region. 

The band performs for benefits and social occasions, side-by-side events with school music ensembles, town recreation programs, and adult living venues, among others. Melody Masters’ musicians are avid performers with diverse careers and experience, some with professional training in music. This 17-piece band brings it on home with heart while performing high-quality classic repertoire including fresh arrangements of big band standards, and by honoring the legends of Basie, Dorsey, Ellington, Miller, Sinatra, and many others. Melody Masters’ musicians are avid performers with diverse careers and experience, some with professional training in music. 

Marcia Bornhurst Parkes - Director of Melody Masters Big Band

About Our Music Director 

An insightful conductor, Dr. Marcia Bornhurst Parkes creates a bond between audiences and every ensemble that she leads through engaging concerts that feature inspiring repertoire and meaningful commentary. Marcia succeeds in bringing people together for a common purpose. In 2019, she led the Melody Masters Big Band in a performance for the Jazz 90.1 live, On-air Broadcast Series and for the Welcome Home Honor Flight program for area veterans at the Rochester (NY) International Airport. Her collaboration with Lovin’ Cup Bistro and Brews, the Rochester Education Foundation, and Jazz 90.1 Radio led to a two-set concert to benefit Rochester (NY) City School students. Guest performers included Nancy Boone-Bahr (baritone saxophone), and Clay Jenkins (trumpet) and Mark Kellogg (trombone), Rochester area jazz professionals and faculty at The Hochstein School, and the Eastman School of Music, respectively.

While leading the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth Music Department she directed the University Jazz Ensemble, and while chair of the Eastman School of Music New Horizons Program she directed the New Horizons Big Band in Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival performances in 2008, 2009, and 2010, a two-set concert at The Smith Opera House in Geneva, NY in 2010, and concerts at senior adult venues, schools, and private events. 

Through her consulting practice, Insightful Music Leadership, Marcia supports the professional music and business communities. She provides guest conducting, consulting, and professional development services in the areas of leadership, engagement – particularly service-learning, musicianship, and performance anxiety. She gives presentations for national, state, and regional professional music associations, as well as for schools and businesses. Marcia holds three degrees in music education: the Ph.D. and M. M. from the Eastman School of Music and the B. M. from Ithaca College. For more information please go to: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mbparkes