Percussionists at Fort Lewis College study weekly with Dr. John O'Neal. Each student begins each semester with a discussion of their musical and professional goals. The private lessons are then adapted each semester to meet these goals. Many students that study privately will be given ample performing experience in masterclasses and student recitals. Aspects of teaching and learning are discussed throughout the course of study to help the percussionist grow as an educator and a performer. Private percussion instruction at Fort Lewis College helps students meet their professional goals while at the same time graduate as a marketable, well-rounded percussionist.  

Percussion Instruments

The Department of Music at Fort Lewis College has one of the largest collections of percussion instruments for a school of its size. Students have the opportunity to perform regularly on the following instruments:

  • 5.0 Octave Marimba One
  • Mark XIV Timpani
  • Yamaha Timpani
  • 4.0 Octave Yamaha Vibraphone
  • Kori Xylophone
  • Malletech Orchestra Bells
  • Yamaha Maple Custom Drumset
  • Black Swamp Snare Drum and Field Drum

The percussion department also has an assortment of cymbals, gongs, auxiliary percussion instruments and world percussion instruments. During one’s course of study at Fort Lewis College a percussionist will have the opportunity to perform of some of the finest instruments available today.

Performance Ensembles

Nationally-recognized educators conduct the ensembles at Fort Lewis College. Performance opportunities include:

  • The Concert Band: This group regularly performs literature that challenges and rewards the percussion section. The band is made of both music majors and non-music majors alike.
  • The Jazz Ensemble: This ensemble actively tours throughout the Western United States. World-renown guest artists perform with the jazz ensemble annually and the Fort Lewis College Jazz Ensemble is featured each year at the Four Corners Jazz Festival.
  • Jazz Combos: Students are given instruction in the art of jazz combo performance from jazz faculty members. Combos perform regularly throughout the year. This intimate musical environment helps the jazz drummer develop as a marketable combo player.
  • Percussion Ensemble: The Fort Lewis College Percussion Ensemble provides percussion students with a variety of percussion performance experiences. In 2007 the Fort Lewis College Percussion Ensemble was invited to perform at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention in Columbus, OH.

Through private instruction, ensemble experiences and individualized classroom learning, the Fort Lewis College percussion student becomes prepared for the world of percussion performance and education. For more information on the percussion studies at Fort Lewis College please call 970-247-7243.

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Audition Requirements for Percussion Studies

Percussion Ensemble performances

See some of our performances on YouTube: