The College’s lively percussion department encompasses a thorough training in solo, orchestral and ensemble playing. Through individual lessons, students develop a sound technique in timpani and percussion playing as well as a thorough knowledge of the orchestral repertoire. Additional one-to-one tuition is also provided in drum kit, and there are specialist group sessions in Latin American percussion.
Repertoire sessions take the form of mock auditions or orchestral technique classes under the guidance of Henry Baldwin (LPO). A complementary programme of masterclasses and workshops brings in inspirational musicians from around the world to work with students. Masterclasses have been given by Toby Kearney (Co-Principal Percussion, CBSO), Matt King (Principal Percussion, BSO), Steve Whibley (Co-Principal Percussion, BBC Concert Orchestra), Chris Ridley (Co-Principal Timpani, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden), Sam Walton (Co-Principal Percussion, LSO) and InSound Mallets.
All students are members of the Percussion Ensemble, which performs both at the College and at external venues. Students gain valuable skills and experience through involvement in an active outreach programme providing educational workshops to school and community groups.
The small and supportive department fulfils the percussion requirements of all College ensembles, offering students a broad experience. Its comprehensive range of percussion instruments is constantly reviewed and updated.