Shannon Wood was named Principal Timpanist of the St. Louis Symphony in 2013, after an unprecedented year being offered a position with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and trials with the Baltimore and Singapore Symphonies. During the summer, he serves as Principal Timpanist of the Mozaic Festival in San Luis Obispo, CA. Shannon has previously held Principal Timpani positions with the Grand Rapids Symphony and Florida Philharmonic Orchestra.
Shannon received a Bachelor’s degree in Percussion Performance from the University of Michigan as a Charlie Owen Scholarship recipient studying under Michael Udow, former Principal Percussionist of the Santa Fe Opera, and Salvatore Rabbio, former Principal Timpanist of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. He received a Master’s of Music in Percussion Performance from Temple University, studying with Alan Abel, former Associate Principal Percussion of the Philadelphia Orchestra. He continued Timpani Performance study with Tom Freer, Percussionist and Assistant Principal Timpanist of the Cleveland Orchestra. Shannon is a New World Symphony fellow alumnus where he focused on orchestral studies under the musical direction of Michael Tilson Thomas, currently Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony.
As an orchestral and chamber musician he has toured extensively throughout Europe, New Zealand, South America, Asia and the United States and has performed with the Atlanta Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Chicago Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, San Diego Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Singapore Symphony, Auckland Philharmonic in New Zealand, and Academia di Santa Cecilia in Rome, Italy.
Shannon has served on the faculty of the University of Miami and the Interlochen Arts Centre, and his summer engagements have included the Aspen, Colorado Music Festival, Grand Tetons, Spoleto USA/Italy, Tanglewood and GRAZ.
In 2003, Shannon premiered a Timpani Concerto written for him by composer Ney Rosauro, available on Cane Records. Also in 2010, Shannon filmed two instructional DVDs for Alfred Music Publishing Company’s education project titled Sound Innovations. In 2007, Shannon won first prize in Florida’s Percussive Arts Society Composition Contest. In 2011 & 2012, the Grand Rapids Symphony commissioned him for an orchestral work. The 2012 commission, Concerto for Section Percussion, won 1st place in the classical music genre at ArtPrize. A commission by the Erie Chamber Orchestra, Concerto for Solo Percussion and Chamber Orchestra, was premiered in September 2013. His chamber work, Oort Cloud, for Solo Percussion and others (8 players) featuring Mr. Wood as soloist, was performed at Powell Hall in 2015 and conducted by David Robertson, Music Director of St. Louis Symphony. In 2015, he was commissioned by the Saint Louis Symphony Community Partnership Program to write a quartet for English horn, cello, piano and timpani titled Abballanu Cifalutani, which premiered in September 2015.
Shannon owns and operates malletshop.com, a source for vintage mallet percussion instruments and timpani. Shannon endorses Zildjian, Remo, and Freer Percussion, and is a member of BMI.