Baton Rouge’s Mike Esneault, a two time Emmy winning composer, Grammy winning arranger, producer and performing artist?
As a composer, arranger, he has established a prolific career working in many mediums including television, motion pictures, radio, live concerts and audio recordings. He has scored over 40 films for PBS. Additional commercial clients include Exxon, McDonald’s, Blue Cross, McDonald's and many more.
He has also worked closely with 5 time Grammy winner and Oscar nominated film composer Terence Blanchard on numerous films including “Original Sin” (Angelina Jolie/Antonio Banderas), “Caveman’s Valentine”(Samuel Jackson), "People I Know"(Al Pacino).
His arrangements have been performed at Carnegie Hall, Hollywood Bowl,Lincoln Center and by orchestras including the Prague Symphony Orchestra, London Studio Orchestra, Seattle Studio Orchestra, the Grammy award winning New Orleans Jazz Orchestra(NOJO) as well as numerous others.
He has arranged for many notable artists including PJ Morton, Cyrille Aimee, Mary Mary,The Clarke Sisters, Kurt Elling, Le'Andria Johnson, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Neena Freelorn, Dianne Reeves, Allen Touissant, Elvis Costello, Dr. John, Lou Rawls, Haley Rienhart, Terence Blanchard and many others.
His orchestral arrangements and conducting were also part of the 2020 Grammy winning "Best Gospel Album "Gospel According to PJ" by PJ Morton.
He has received numerous awards as a composer including a Henry Mancini Fellowship and a 2008 Louisiana Division of the Arts Fellowship for composition. In addition, he received a 2008 Emmy award for his score to “Atchafalaya Houseboat" as well as a 2017 Emmy for his score to the film "Deeply Rooted". his music has been used on programs/networks such as NCIS:New Orleans, American Idol, FOX Sports, NFL 360, Comedy Central, Lifetime Channel, Netflix, Bravo, etc.
As a pianist he has performed and/or recorded with artists such as Wynton Marsalis, Don Vappie, Terence Blanchard, Peter Erskine, Nicholas Payton, Frank Morgan, Brian Blade, Kurt Elling, Vanessa Rubin, Pete Fountain and many more. He has performed at venues such as The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center and all around the world including festivals in Canada, Brazil, England, Switzerland, Italy, Virgin Islands, India. etc.
He is also very active as a clinician and teacher. In November 2017 he was inducted into the Louisiana Association of Jazz Educators (LAJE) Hall of Fame. He has given master classes throughout the US and is also an instructor in the East Baton Rouge Gifted and Talented Program where he has taught since 1998. Within this program he focuses on many different areas of music with very gifted young students including composition, jazz improvisation, arranging and music technology. He has also served as a Professional Artist in Residence at Louisiana State University where he taught jazz piano and improvisation.
Former students of his include Jon Batiste (Stephen Cobert Show), Sullivan Fortner (Roy Hargrove Band), Troy "Trombone Shorty Andrews, Simon Lott, Seth Finch and many more. Influential teachers his musical development include Alvin Batiste, Dr. Bert Braud, Lawrence Siebert, Mike Pellera, Dr. Willis Delony and Dr. Bill Grimes and J.R. Miller. He has also studied with many others including Johnny Mandel, Patrick Williams, John Clayton, Alf Clausen, Dave Grusin and more.