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Percussion Ensemble Overview

The YSU Percussion Ensemble, under the direction of Dr. Glenn Schaft, is one of the premiere chamber ensembles at the Dana School of Music. Our repertoire includes classic 20th and 21st century works, contemporary or experimental music, composer commissions, YSU student compositions, marimba ensemble, group improvisation, and Latin/world percussion styles such as - West African, Afro-Cuban, and Brazilian styles. Our numerous live performances, composer commissions, premiere performances, and recordings demonstrate the breadth of our mission.

Recent honors include our performance at the 2018 Percussive Arts Society International Convention in Indianapolis, IN as part of the New Music Focus Day with alum Ron Coulter. YSU PE has also been jury selected to perform the Percussive Arts Society Ohio Chapter Days of Percussion at Capital University, Ohio Northern University, Youngstown State University and Ohio Music Education Association (OMEA) Conferences in Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati. We have collaborated with guest artists such as Robert Van Sice, John Hollenbeck, Johnny Lee Lane, Ruben Alvarez, Michael Spiro, Reynaldo Gonzalez Fernandez, Rob Ferguson, Doug Walter, Ron Coulter, Adam Mamula, and Ted Rounds. On-campus semester performances include an evening feature concert and a Butler Institute of American Art "Music At Noon" performance. 

A central part of our mission involves collaborations with composers in the commissioning, premiering, and recording of their works. Our critically acclaimed 2005 release Dark Wood includes composer commissions with Jeffrey Matter, Ted Rounds, Till Meyn, and Dave Morgan, six premiere recordings and features Glenn Schaft as soloist on Morgan's "Reactions for Drumset and Wind Ensemble" with the YSU Wind Ensemble, Dr. Stephen Gage-director. Our commission project with New York City-based percussionist/composer John Hollenbeck on his "Ziggurat" for five percussionists and four saxophonists, was premiered at the Whitney Museum of Contemporary Art in New York City, and is available on his 2008 release Rainbow Jimmies. The Youngstown Percussion Collective's 2012 release Forms Of Things Unknown is a tour-de-force suite by YSU professor of bass and composition, Dr. Dave Morgan.

Another important dimension of the YSU Percussion Program is the Youngstown Percussion Collective. YPC is a university sponsored non-profit student organization whose mission is to advance the percussive arts through performance, composition, commissions, educational outreach, research, and fundraising. Membership is open to YSU students, alumni, and faculty and Glenn Schaft serves as their faculty advisor.

YPC also offers an outstanding multi-cultural educational outreach program entitled  "Rhythm Is Our Business" which is available for K-12 school assemblies and tours throughout Ohio and Western Pennsylvania.  Our objective is to inspire young audiences and help them understand the universal elements of musical communication through the experience of rhythm as movement, music as a communal activity, and the beauty, simplicity, and appeal of percussion instruments from around the world. We offer both a K-8 program and a high school program; each includes performance, audience participation, discussion of the instruments, and question/answer opportunities. Programs may be tailored to the entire student body or exclusively music students. 

    ADA Compliance                                                                                                          Glenn Schaft © 2008-2015