Nancy Zeltsman

Music listing
Nancy Zeltsman is a leading marimba performer, recording artist, teacher, author and festival director who has premiered over a hundred solo/chamber marimba works. She performed the premiere of Michael Tilson Thomas’ “Island Music” in April 2003 with percussionists of the New World Symphony, and in early January 2005 with the percussion section of the San Francisco Symphony. Zeltsman has presented recitals and marimba master classes across the United States and Europe and in Japan and Mexico. Her recordings include a new duo marimba CD with Jack Van Geem; three solo CDs; and three CDs with the marimba/violin duo Marimolin. Ms. Zeltsman has taught marimba at The Boston Conservatory and Berklee College of Music since 1993 and is Artistic Director of Zeltsman Marimba Festival, Inc. Her marimba method, “Four Mallet Marimba Playing: A Musical Approach for All Levels,” was published in 2003 by Hal Leonard Corporation. Nancy lives in Boston, MA. Visit her website at:

Nancy Zeltsman: CD "Sweet Song" Nancy considers this her "lite" CD: perfect as background music while cooking and eating dinner! It reflects her love of diverse music - from classical to jazz-influenced and contemporary styles - while remaining lyrical throughout. It’s mostly solo marimba with guest percussionists Eguie Castrillo and Jamey Haddad. “Your CD is a delight! Personal as home movies," wrote Gordon Gottlieb (NY freelance percussionist extraordinaire).

Jack Van Geem & Nancy Zeltsman: CD "Pedro and Olga Learn to Dance" Zeltsman is joined by Jack Van Geem, Principal Percussionist of the San Francisco Symphony, to perform original works and arrangements for marimba duo. The title track is one movement of Andrew Thomas’ delightful blend of Bach and Latin dances called "Three Transformations." The disc includes Nancy’s arrangements of Debussy’s "Danse," Samuel Barber’s "Adagio," and an often Brazilian-flavored work by Thomas Oboe Lee. Contemporary pieces by Scott Lindroth and Dutch composer Joep Straesser.

Nancy Zeltsman: CD "See Ya Thursday" This CD presents important first-recordings of three pieces which are already "classics" within the marimba repertoire: Gunther Schuller’s "Marimbology," Paul Lansky’s "Three Moves for Marimba," and Steven Mackey’s "See Ya Thursday." It also represents the breadth of Zeltsman’s musical tastes with the inclusion of music by Louis Adriessen and Emmanuel Séjourné and adaptations of music by Beethoven, Bernstein, Federico Chueca, and Duke Ellington, as well as a traditional Mexican song.

"Nancy Zeltsman has made an extraordinary career as a concert marimba player, usually performing as part of a duo. For this solo recording, she reaches beyond her usual repertoire of contemporary music to include adaptations of more traditional pieces.

Zeltsman’s deep relationship with her instrument have uniquely qualified her to adapt pieces such as Ludwig Van Beethoven’s “Bagatelle No. 4” and Duke Ellington’s “Morning Glory.” The marimba’s glowing tones elegantly recreate the emotion of the piece with a liquid baritone, an underwater piano. Pieces like Leonard Bernstein’s “For Susanna Kyle” make use of the instrument’s shimmering vibrations. Zeltsman’s soft touch can raise a note with virtually no attack, giving the percussive instrument an organlike quality. Contemporary compositions like Gunther Schuller’s “Marimbology” highlight the instrument’s full range and the performer’s virtuosity. Others, like Emmanuel Séjourné’s "Nancy," take a more minimalist approach.

Zeltsman’s talent breathes passion into them all. Her solo performance lets listeners focus on the difference a marimba makes, on pieces both new and familiar.” Reviewed on


Title Genre Level Price
Pedro & Olga Learn To Dance CD $15.00
See Ya Thursday CD $15.00
Sweet Song CD $15.00

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