Percussion Performance

Percussion Performance Faculty

Faculty Member Title Contact Biography
Dr. Robert J. Falvo
Professor, Percussion Area Coordinator
Room 124, Broyhill Music Center
(828) 262-4979

Mission Statement

The Master of Music degree in Performance provides a comprehensive education in music as an expression of artistic talent with a thorough knowledge of pedagogy and applied literature. The degree offers the student performer the opportunity to develop high levels of musicianship and instill a lifelong desire to participate creatively as a dedicated artist, performer, scholar, and teacher.

Admissions Information

General Admission Requirements

Audition Requirements

The Master of Music in percussion performance is designed to give students the opportunity and experience to focus in area(s) of percussion that they are most passionate.  It prepares the student for a career as a performing percussionist in their area(s) of expertise, to teach on the college level or to go on to a Doctor in Musical Arts program.  The percussion curriculum is shaped to the students’ needs based on what the student is interested in and the expertise of the percussion faculty.  Over the years, Master of Music students in percussion have focused on orchestral performance, contemporary classical chamber and solo music, World music and jazz performance.  If you have any questions, feel free to contact Dr. Rob Falvo with any inquires.

The MM candidate in percussion is required to audition in the following areas: mallets, timpani, snare drum, and multiple percussion.  The solos and/or etudes performed on these instruments are of the students’ choice.  Two Orchestral excerpts on mallets, timpani, snare drum, tambourine, triangle, and crash cymbals are also required.  Drum set is highly recommended but optional and the student is encouraged to perform on any other percussion instruments that the student is passionate about playing, e.g. frame drums, tabla, jazz on vibraphone, latin percussion, steel drums.  The student may also be asked to sightread on mallets and snare drum, perform scales (major and/or minor) on mallets, perform rudiments on snare drum, and identify pitches on timpani.  

To schedule an audition, please contact Dr. Falvo. 

Download the audition form, fill out the information on page one, and bring the complete form to your audition.

Degree Course Requirements

Course Requirements for the Master of Music in Performance Semester Hours Required (minimum): 32 or 35 - varies by concentration - see below
Required Courses
  • AMU 6xxx: Applied Music (8)
  • MUS 5006: Philosophy of Music (3)
  • MUS 5170: Professional and Scholarly Practices for Musicians (3)
  • MUS 5013: History of Musical Style (3) 
  • MUS 5018: Applied Area Literature – topics depend upon concentration (3) 
  • MUS 5600: Analytical Techniques (3)

Performance Concentration (Code: 558L)
Semester hours required for the degree (minimum): 32

  • MUS 5100: Performance Ensemble (1+1+1+1=4)
  • MUS 5998: Master of Music in Performance Recital (2)
  • 3 s.h. of music electives chosen in consultation with an advisor

Schedule of Course Offerings

Courses offered each Fall Semester:

  • MUS 5170 Professional and Scholarly Practices for Musicians
  • MUS 5600 Analytical Techniques 

Courses offered each Spring Semester:

  • MUS 5006 Philosophy of Music 
  • MUS 5013 History of Musical Style
  • MUS 5602 Music Theory Pedagogy (Even years only)

Recital Requirements

  • The recital will consist of approximately forty to fifty minutes of music performance.
  • All areas of percussion, i.e., keyboard percussion (marimba and vibraphone), timpani and multiple percussion will be included.
  • At least one selection must be accompanied by piano, chamber ensemble, or electronic tape.
  • At least one avant-garde composition must be performed.

Assistantships and Scholarships

View general Assistantship and Scholarship information

Percussion Assistantships

The Percussion Assistantship involves assisting with instrumental methods classes, ensembles, and private lessons. The stipend for one year is $8,500.