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Percussion

Percussionists at the Yale School of Music play not only the solo repertoire but also orchestral percussion and a wide variety of contemporary music. In addition to weekly private lessons with Professor van Sice, students participate in the weekly studio seminar. Percussionists play in the Yale Philharmonia, and the New Music New Haven series offers frequent opportunities to collaborate with composers on premieres of new works.

All percussionists play in the Yale Percussion Group, an ensemble hailed by composer Steve Reich as “something truly extraordinary.” The Yale Percussion Group performed at Carnegie Hall as part of the Yale in New York series in 2010 and returned in January 2014. The YPG traveled to Ghana in 2014 as part of a music and service trip with the Yale Concert Band.

The YSM percussion program has incubated numerous contemporary ensembles: Sō Percussion was formed at Yale, as was the new ensemble Sandbox. YSM percussion alumni have also performed with Third Coast Percussion, Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Two, the Academy/Ensemble ACJW, the Oslo Philharmonic, and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra.

Recent Yale percussion graduates have won the Linz (Austria) International Marimba Competition and the Concert Artist Guild Competition.

Students have the opportunity to teach Yale undergraduates, and the Music in Schools Initiative offers the chance to work with younger students in the New Haven Public Schools. Yale percussion graduates have gone on to teach at schools such as Cornell, Dartmouth, Michigan State, SUNY Stonybrook, UMass Amherst, Baylor, University of Kansas, and the Conservatoire de Genève (Switzerland).

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