Link to Auburn Journal feature article from Oct 13, 2017. Matthew Morse earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music from Thomas Edison State University in Trenton, New Jersey, in 2011 and subsequently completed a Master of Arts degree in Instrumental Conducting in 2013 from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where he was a student of Jack Stamp. He graduated in May 2017 with a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Wind Conducting from the University of North Texas, where he was a conducting student of Eugene Corporon. Concurrent with finishing his undergraduate degree in 2011, Morse retired as a chief warrant officer four following a 25-year military music career with the United States Army. Early in his career, Morse served for nearly 12 years as a multi-instrumentalist performing primarily on euphonium and trombone and serving two tours each with the 4th Infantry Division Band at Fort Carson, Colorado, and the United States Army Japan Band, Camp Zama, Japan.
In 1997, Morse was selected to become a warrant officer bandmaster and served as the commander and conductor of the 3rd Infantry Division Band at Fort Stewart, Georgia, the 1st Armored Division Band, then stationed in Wiesbaden, Germany, and the 282nd Army “Victory” Band at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. He deployed as a band commander to combat zones in Bosnia-Herzegovina in 2000 and twice to Iraq during a 15-month period in 2003–04. In 2007, Morse was selected by competitive audition for his capstone assignment as the associate bandmaster and director of the Jazz Knights of the United States Military Academy Band at West Point, New York, where he shared the stage with numerous named artists and soloists.
Morse has appeared as a guest conductor with many groups, including the United States Army Field Band, the United States Army Europe Band and Chorus, and the West Point Band. As an instrumentalist, Morse has performed on bass trombone in recent years with the North Texas Wind Symphony, the Keystone Wind Ensemble, the IUP Wind Ensembles, and the Pueblo Symphony Orchestra in Pueblo, Colorado, along with various freelance settings, including an orchestra backing Bernadette Peters in 2012 and a big band backing Doc Severinsen in 2014.
Morse’s military decorations include the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star Medal, and the Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters. Other awards include the John Philip Sousa Foundation’s Colonel George S. Howard Citation of Musical Excellence for Military Concert Bands for his work with the 282nd Army Band in 2007, and also the South Suburban Conference (Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota area) Achievement Award in Fine Arts in 2013. Additionally, Morse received the Thomas Jefferson High School (Bloomington, Minnesota) Fine Arts Hall of Fame award in 2009. Morse also holds a second-degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do.
Morse’s professional affiliations include the College Band Directors’ National Association, the National Band Association, the Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity, and the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society.