The Percussion Program at The University of Montana has developed into one of the premier programs of its kind in the Northwest. Percussionists at The University of Montana are trained to become “total percussionists” through private instruction and through outstanding performance opportunities. Each percussion major develops proficiency in the areas of snare drum, mallet keyboard, timpani, orchestral accessories, multiple percussion, drumset and world percussion while also focusing on specific areas of expertise. Ethnic or “world” percussion experiences include: Steel Drums, West African drumming (from Guinea, Ghana ans Senegal), Afro-Cuban percussion, Brazilian, Mexican marimba ensemble and Balinese Gamelan.
Percussionists at The University of Montana have the opportunity to perform in several outstanding ensembles including the Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Concert Band, Grizzly Marching Band, Symphony Orchestra, three Jazz Bands, Jazz Combos, The Jubes Vocal group, Missoula Symphony Orchestra and chamber groups. In addition to these outstanding groups, percussionists also perform to large crowds on the Percussion Ensemble Concerts. There are three Percussion Concerts a year including the World Rhythms Concert in February which features the World Percussion Ensembles in rotation.
Each year, the UM Percussion Department hosts nationally and internationally renowned percussion clinicians and performers. UM percussionists have the opportunity to study with these artists in both the master class and private setting. In addition, students are able to perform alongside these great performers on percussion concerts. Some of the artists appearing on campus in recent years include:
Peter Erskine, Horacio "El Negro" Hernandez, Gregg Bissonette, Steve Houghton, William Kennedy, Chris Wabich, Steve Smith, Ed Soph
|Vibraphone:||Dave Samuels, Arthur Lipner, Terry Gibbs, Ed Saindon and Gary Gibson|
|Marimba||Julie Spencer, Doug Walter, Mark Ford|
|Concert Percussion||Gordon Peters, William Kraft, Larry Snider, Lalo Davila, Christopher Deane, Jeff Prosperie|
|Afro-Cuban||Lalo Davila, Cuban All-stars, Luis Benetti, Jesus Diaz|
|Hand Drums:||Glen Velez, Robert Chappell|
|African Drums:||Edi Gbordzi, Idrissa Gueye, Abdoul Doumbia, Fred Simpson|
|Steel Drums:||Andy Narell, Liam Teague, Michael Carney, Chris Wabich|
|Gamelan:||I Made Lasmawan|
Scholarships For Percussion
The University of Montana, Department of Music has several scholarships available for entering Freshmen majoring in Music Performance, Music Education, Music Composition/Technology, or the Bachelor of Arts degree in Music.
Scholarship awards amounts are:
Full Tuition Waiver for 4 years of undergraduate study as a music major.
Students must participate in Symphonic Wind Ensemble and/or University Symphony Orchestra
Talent Scholarship for 4 years of undergraduate study as a music major or minor.
Grizzly Marching Band Scholarships are available for each semester of participation for all participants! These are available in addition to other scholarships. They start out at $500 for first year members, $750 for second year members and go to $1000 for third & fourth year members.
Graduate Scholarships and Graduate Teaching Assistantships are also available for qualified full-time graduate students for two years of study. Amounts vary according to duties. Contact Dr. LedBetter for more information and availability.
Photos: (Top) World Rhythms Concert 2010, (Bottom) Clinic with Lalo Davila & Horacio “El Negro” Hernandez