In the percussion studio at University of North Carolina School of the Arts, it’s all about finding your own rhythm. Being a student in the undergraduate percussion program means one-on-one private lessons, weekly studio master classes and ample opportunities to perform.
As part of the conservatory experience, you will have weekly private lessons with your teacher to develop a personalized plan of study to meet your professional goals. You will become proficient in all four areas of instrument study: snare drum, keyboard instruments, timpani and drum set. Instruments available in the percussionist studio include those for concert and classic orchestral pieces, Latin/Afro Cuban style performances, contemporary music and commercial percussion.
Your performance opportunities in the School of Music are many. Ensemble participation and instruments are assigned by the instructor, with emphasis on your areas of strength and interest. You will be experienced in each style and instrument, while having the opportunity to become fluent in the instrument you are passionate about. As a student, you will also participate in the annual Days of Percussion festival hosted by the Percussive Arts Society, and can compete in concerto competitions. By the time you graduate, you will have broad musical experience that will make you a marketable musician ready to embrace any opportunity.
In your first two years of undergraduate percussion degree study, you will begin private lessons, master classes and ensemble performances while studying the foundations of music theory, aural and keyboard skills and musical styles. You will pursue liberal arts courses in English, math or science, and the humanities. In your freshman through junior years, you are also required to attend a weekly Performance Hour, where music students perform and experience different musical genres, styles, and instruments.
Your studies will continue in your third and fourth years with additional liberal arts courses, music history and career development classes. In Year Four, you will fulfill your capstone graduation requirement, a full recital at both a juried recital hearing and a public performance.
Graduates of the percussion program at UNCSA include musicians in bands in four branches of the military, two musicologists, several active Jazz musicians and members of regional orchestras.