2016 Audition Information

Dear new percussion students,

I hope you are having a relaxing, productive summer and are looking forward to the 2016--2017 school year.  I wanted to inform you of some of the activities and responsibilities you have in Term I.

As you know, classes begin September 12th with percussion auditions for all major ensembles (except jazz) on September 11, at 1:00 p.m.  Please sign up for a time slot on my office door. 

Freshmen who are not majoring in music should prepare an etude in all areas of percussion performance that best demonstrates their technical level.  Freshmen who are majoring in music should prepare an etude in all areas of percussion performance.  Here is a list of repertoire that you could consider, other selections will be considered:

  • snare drum - #32 from Portraits of Rhythm by Cirone,
  • keyboard percussion – any Bach transcription, orchestral excerpts or some other etude,
  • timpani - demonstrate tuning and perform etude of your choice. 

There will also be sight-reading in each of these areas.  In addition, be prepared to demonstrate techniques on assorted percussion accessories such as tambourine, triangle, and cymbals.  You can use orchestral excerpts if you like is these areas, as well.  Returning students should prepare orchestral excerpts for auditions in the areas snare drum, keyboard percussion, timpani, tambourine, triangle, and crash cymbals.

Go to the Jazz Department website for explanation for jazz audition procedures and times.

There will be a mandatory studio meeting for all percussion students studying with me and performing in the ensembles on September 11 at 7:00 p.m. in Room 27.   Please bring your date books and course schedules.  Read this paragraph again!

All percussion majors should own their own metronome, practice pad, assortment of snare drum sticks, keyboard percussion mallets (i.e. xylophone, bells, vibes, marimba), timpani mallets (four pairs:  wood, general, staccato, legato), triangle beaters and clips, A-440 tuning fork, dictionary of percussion terms, and pocket size music dictionary. You should also have an attaché case of some sort in which to carry your mallets and music.  Here is a list of manufacturers and mallet types that you can choose from. Though there are many other types from which to choose:

  Company Type
Snare Drum Vic Firth General
  Vic Firth P. Erskine
Brushes Real Tip Telescopic
Combination Stick Vic Firth Swizzle G
Timpani Black Swamp General-Bamboo
    Staccato shaft-maple
    Cartwheel soft-maple
Marimba Encore Orange-medium 2pr
    (rattan handles or birch)
    Teal medium hard
Vibes Malletech D. Samuels
    Model #18
    2 pair
Xylophone Malletech Orchestra series
    Large rosewood rattan
    Becker blues
Bells Malletech Orchestra series-black
  Mike Balter

Small plastic fiberglass handle

Triangle beaters/clips Stoessel or Black Swamp  
Drum Mutes You can make your own  
Tambourine Grover, Black Swamp  
Triangle Grover, Black Swamp  






























You can order through Steve Weiss Music or Percussion Source------two places I recommend.

Freshmen, I realize you might not be able to purchase all of these implements before school begins, but I strongly encourage you to have them by the end of Term I.  All returning students are required to have the variety of mallets I recommended.

Required method books for Term I:


Snare Drum

  • Developing Dexterity by M. Peters
  • The Snare Drum Roll by G. Olmstead
  • The All-American Drummer by Wilcoxon
  • Snare Drum in the Concert Hall by Payson
  • Douze Etudes by Delecluse
  • Portraits in Rhythm by Cirone
  • Odd Rudimental Etudes by M. Peters


  • Modern School of Xylo, Vibes, and Bells by M. Goldenberg
  • Ideo Kinetics by G. Stout
  • Method of Movement by L. H. Stevens
  • Rhythmical Articulation by Bona
  • Vibraphone Technique by David Friedman
  • 26 Bach Chorales arr. Murray Houllif
  • 4 Mallet Marimba Technique by Nancy Zeltsman
  • Symphonic Repertoire for Keyboard Percussion by Jack Van Geem

Drum Set

  • Advanced Techniques for the Modern Drummer Vol. 1 by J. Chapin
  • The Art of Bop Drumming by John Riley
  • The Jazz Drummers Workshop by John Riley
  • Drum Set Reading by Ron Fink


  • The Conga Drummer’s Guidebook by Michael Spiro


  • Techniques of Playing Bass Drum, Cymbals, and Accessories by Payson

LarryU Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube