Up until recently the percussionist has had to use a variety of sources on the internet or in books to find information about many of the important things that every percussionist and/or timpanist needs to know at some point in their careers whether they are a student, amateur or professional player. But make sure you check out The Percussion Room.
The Percussion Room is a website for percussionists, timpanists and anyone curious about the instruments and inner workings of an orchestra’s percussion section. It’s also an invaluable resource of information for musician contractors and personnel managers who are faced with hiring the right number of percussionists for their orchestras.
The key features of The Percussion Room are currently:
Assignments: Who plays what, and when? This information is crucial for every percussion section to know and it can be time consuming and confusing to organize if you’re not familiar with the piece or maybe you don’t have the exact number of players that seem necessary to perform the work accurately. The Percussion Room has taken the time to outline this valuable for a huge collection of repertoire and in many cases has offered a couple of possibilities in case you might be short a player or two.
Dictionary: Having a dictionary like this at your disposal is very important and I wish I had this when I was a kid because the part I was playing asked for Glocken which I know now is the German word for Tubular Bells or Chimes, but back when I didn’t know and didn’t have a translation dictionary like this I played the part on the wrong instrument. I thought Glocken was short for Glockenspiel. Boy, was I wrong!
Auditions: Symphony orchestra auditions are very difficult to prepare for, so its very helpful to have this compilation of audition lists ahead of time so you can prepare as many orchestral excerpts as possible. Serious percussionists can refer to this listing to know what excerpts are most common and therefore prepare well in advance of any audition that comes along.
Instruments Statistics (Stats): Currently contains instrument-usage statistics, which tells you how often instruments are used in orchestra repertoire (quite interesting).
Composers: This list is very helpful to understand how different composers might relate to one another from a time in history perspective. This list shows you birth dates and death dates of all the most famous composers in history.
Blog: The author of The Percussion Room offers opinions, and insight which is always interesting.
The Percussion Room is the brain child of Steven Wassmansdorf
Steven Wassmansdorf is a seasoned Orchestral Percussionist from Canada (same as me) who has studied with some of the most respected teachers at the most prestigious music schools in North America, and he’s played with many professional orchestras all around the world.
The Percussion Room reflects the many years of education and practical experience that Steve has had in his musical life and being able to see his work in the Percussion Room has made it easier for every percussionist that needs this font of knowledge.