Nick Riley

Nick Riley has been involved in the pageantry arts since 2003 as a performer, educator, composer/arranger, and judge.

Nick holds a Bachelor of Music in Music Education degree from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio where he studied music education with James Swearingen and Jim Dowdy; percussion with Bob Breithaupt, Nate Anders, and Eric Paton; and music composition with Dr. Dina Lentsner and Tony Zilincik. While completing his undergraduate degree, Nick was a sought-after percussion arranger and instructor in central and southwestern Ohio.

Nick is the founder of the web-based marching arts design company NPR Marching Concepts (, where he has over 50 ensembles to his credit since beginning his writing career in 2007. The ensembles that Nick has written for have been highly successful at all levels of competition.

During the winter months, Nick is heavily involved in the indoor percussion and winter winds activity.  In addition to serving as a designer, educator, and administrator to numerous scholastic and independent groups, Nick is in his sixth year on staff with ConneXus from Delaware, Ohio.  Nick currently serves as Logistics Coordinator and Front Ensemble Technician and is the President of the ConneXus Performing Arts Association, Inc. Board of Directors.  Nick co-founded the ConneXus organization and has since helped to lead the ensemble to three appearances in the WGI World Championships Finals alongside numerous other accolades.

Outside of the world of indoor percussion, Nick is entering his sixth year as the Director of Bands at Liberty Center Local Schools in northwest Ohio. At LC, he is responsible for directing all aspects of the band program grades 5 through 12 as well as teaching 5th grade general music and high school music appreciation. Since his appointment in 2012, the bands at Liberty Center have seen tremendous growth in both quality and interest.

Nick is also an avid judge of marching percussion, music performance, and music general effect as a member of the Central States Judges Association, the Ohio Music Education Association, and USBands. He has adjudicated local and state level contests in Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, West Virginia, and Tennessee as a member of these associations.  In 2017, Nick was selected as an adjudicator for the MSBA Class A Championships.

Recently, Nick had the opportunity to work with some of the top marching arts ensembles in the world. He served as Assistant Visual Caption Head at Legends Drum & Bugle Corps (MI) from 2011 to 2013, Front Ensemble Instructor for Pioneer Drum & Bugle Corps (WI) in 2014, Percussion Consultant for The Ohio State University Marching Band from 2011 to 2014, and as a Percussion Instructor for the Medellin Gran Banda (Colombia, South America), the 2014 DCI SoundSport World Champion. Nick returned to the DCI activity in the summer of 2016 as a member of the visual staff for the Colts Drum & Bugle Corps (IA).  In 2017, Nick was appointed as Secretary of the Board of Directors for the Columbus Saints, a central Ohio DCI SoundSport ensemble, and served on the percussion staff of the Medellin Gran Banda for their second United States tour.

In addition to publishing his own music, Nick’s compositions for indoor percussion are published through Gary P. Gilroy Publications and Marching Show Concepts. He is a member of the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers, the National Association for Music Education, the Central States Judges Association, the Ohio Music Education Association, the Percussive Arts Society, and has been an endorsed artist-educator with Vic Firth, Inc. since 2008.  Nick is also proud to hold endorsements from Evans/D’Addario, Sabian, and Black Swamp Percussion.

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