Michael Wimberly

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Michael Wimberly is a composer, percussionist, and music producer who has recorded and toured throughout Europe, Africa, and the Americas. He is the driving force behind Power of Drum, an alternative arts program whose mission is to make music education accessible to all youth worldwide.


Wimberly is a composer, percussionist, educator, and music producer based in Harlem, New York. Having recorded and toured internationally with innovative artists such as, Charles Gayle, Steve Coleman, William Parker, Cooper-Moore, David Murray, and many others. He has earned his place in the pantheon of cutting-edge, avant-garde jazz drummers. As a djembe soloist Wimberly has been featured with Europe’s Rundfunk, Tonkuntsler, Leipzig, and the International Regions Symphony Orchestra performing “African Oratorio” by composer Daniel Schnyder. As a composer, Wimberly’s symphonic work, “Kora Saba,” has been performed by the Yakima Chamber Orchestra in Yakima, Washington, and the Sage City Symphony in Bennington, Vermont. His compositions also appear in dance companies Urban Bush Women, Joffrey Ballet, Alvin Ailey, Philadanco, Forces of Nature, Ailey II, Complexions, Ballet Noir, Alpha Omega, BalEthinic, Purelements, and The National Song and Dance Company of Mozambique.

Currently in postproduction for his documentary film The Sound of Freedom, Wimberly received an Arts International award to capture a musical portrait of Mozambique’s traditional dances and national instrument the “timbila” with performances by Mozambique’s national treasure Venancio Mbande. Additional awards were received by Bennington College to advance his work on the film. As president of the Michael Wimberly cooperative Together with Music, based on the island of São Miguel Açores, Portugal, and creator of the international percussion event, Power of Drum, Wimberly is actively engaged with an alternative arts program whose mission is to make accessible to all youth, independent of social status, age, gender, and ethnic background, the learning of music and its relation to all the arts and sciences. As a board member of the longstanding predecessor to independent television, Deep-Dish TV, he is equally engaged in helping transform this iconic entity to weather the 21st century while building a new legacy.

A recent endeavor has Wimberly consulting and crafting a curriculum for Bowman 6, a non-profit organization based in Harlem whose mission is to expose teens to the creative opportunities behind the scenes in film, fashion, and music. He joined the Bennington faculty in Fall 2012.