SummerFest 2020 Artist Spotlight: Mark Sloniker

Jul 3, 2020 | News, Off the Hook Arts, SummerFest

Mark Sloniker is an accomplished jazz pianist and composer. His music has been featured on The Weather Channel and the “top six” of three national radio airplay charts (R&R, Gavin, and the MAC Report) as well on Billboard Magazine’s national sales charts. Songs from his CD “Perfectly Human” have been featured on ESPN’s “Make a Wish” program and on ABC Sports. Further to his passion for jazz, Sloniker’s music also incorporates new age themes of spiritualism and peace.

Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, Sloniker grew up with the musical influence of his grandfather who worked for The Baldwin Piano Company. Sloniker became obsessed with playing the piano whenever he could, and eventually took lessons. However, he found that reading sheet music didn’t fit his auditory experience of learning and making music, and so he preferred to learn music by ear. 

After being inspired by the trombone player Winthrop from ‘The Music Man’, he started learning the trombone in 5th grade, while also keeping up with his piano practice. Sloniker went on to attend the University of Cincinnati and completed his trombone lessons. Sloniker was tutored by the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra’s acclaimed bass trombonist Betty Glover. During this time, Sloniker had been composing pieces on the piano. With the advice of his mother, Sloniker performed his piano compositions for Glover. After hearing his work, Glover insisted that he explore the prospect of studying composition at the College Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati. 

Whilst pursuing his academic studies, Sloniker joined the Fort Collins-based jazz fusion group Kinesis who went on to perform at a variety of venues around the USA and Canada. After Kinesis, Sloniker went to receive a degree in Music Therapy from Colorado State University.  Since then, Sloniker has used this experience in Music Therapy to frame his approach to music and has worked with doctors and psychologists to bring the healing power of music to those in need. Following his degree, he turned his professional interests back to composing and recording music. 

Sloniker has six self-recorded CDs, alongside appearances as a guest performer for various ensembles. His sixth recording “Miracles…and other works of heart” was co-created with his partner and musician, Colleen Crosson, and incorporates an array of soulful musical genres. His son, Myles Sloniker, is also a jazz performer who shares his family’s devotion to music and plays the bass.


You can listen to some of Sloniker’s recordings and find out about his future performances here:

Visit Mark Sloniker’s media pages to find out more about his work: 

Personal Website-


Mark Sloniker Artist Biography Page