Starting in 2024, the Percussive Arts Society will present/co-present five in-person percussion ensemble competitions and festivals around the United States for high school and middle school students. UT Music is thrilled to be hosting one of the five ensemble competitions on March 1-2, 2024, at the Natalie L. Haslam Music Center on the University of Tennessee, Knoxville campus. The University of Tennessee Percussion Festival offers the opportunity for students and band directors to be immersed in the art of percussion for an entire weekend of learning and discovery. Activities include:
- Honor Percussion Festival
- Percussion Ensemble Festival Adjudication
- Showcase Concerts
- Masterclasses from UT Percussion faculty & Guest Artist Ivan Trevino
We cannot wait to see you there!
Honor Percussion Ensemble
The Honor Percussion Ensemble is a highly competitive ensemble that comprises the best high school students from around the country. The group will get to work with the UT Percussion Faculty as well as our guest artist Ivan Trevino.
Audition Video Requirements
Auditions should be approximately 5-10 minutes and representative of your best playing. Feel free to submit performances of solo repertoire, chamber repertoire, drum set, world percussion, etc. You may submit multiple videos for multiple pieces and we ask that you submit videos as a URL link (videos can be uploaded to platforms such as YouTube or Vimeo).
We ask that you please make sure that you and the entirety of your instrument are in view. Each individual piece should be recorded in a single take.
Percussion Ensemble Adjudication
This component of the festival is for high school percussion groups that wish to perform for the Knoxville community and receive invaluable feedback from our guest artist Ivan Trevino. Each group will receive a time slot to perform; after the performance, groups will get a special chance to work with Ivan Trevino. In the evening the festival will be closed out with concerts featuring the UT Percussion Ensemble, UT Percussion Festival Faculty, and the Honor Percussion Ensemble. There are a limited number of spots available and they are on a first come, first served basis.
Register your ensemble for adjudication using this registration form.
UT can provide the following:
- All large equipment (keyboards, timpani, concert toms, bass drums, gongs, etc.)
- Music stands
- Trap tables
Ivan Trevino (b.1983) is a Mexican-American composer, percussionist, writer and arts advocate. He has shared his music with audiences around the world, from Asia to South America to Madison Square Garden in New York City.
As a composer and songwriter, Ivan’s music has been performed on five continents in over 25 countries. He is a multi-award winning recipient of the Percussive Arts Society’s International Composition Contest and has over 70 compositions and songs to his name. Most recently, he was the featured composer on American Public Media’s Performance Today.
An active educator, Ivan currently serves as Lecturer in Percussion at University of Texas at Austin. He is also co-director of the Eastman Percussion Festival, a biennial summer festival hosted by Eastman School of Music. He is an artist and clinician for Innovative Percussion, Black Swamp Percussion, Zildjian Cymbals, Evans Drumheads, Pearl / Adams, Meinl, and Beetle Percussion.
Ivan is also well-known for his work as a drummer with Break of Reality, an international touring cello rock quartet. Break of Reality has released five studio albums and has been featured on PBS, Huffington Post, Yahoo Music and is on regular rotation on National Public Radio.
Ivan’s work spans various media including storytelling, poetry, and film scoring. His collection of online writings are regularly circulated throughout the arts community, including “My Pretend Music School”, a blog post that has sparked debate about music school curriculum and has become required reading for collegiate courses around the U.S.
Ivan currently lives in Austin, TX with his wife, Amanda, and their children, Henry and Oscar.
James Campbell has received worldwide recognition as a performer, pedagogue and author, and is a respected figure in the development of the contemporary percussion ensemble. He has toured extensively throughout The Americas, Europe, and Asia. Currently Emeritus Director of Percussion Studies at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, he also holds the positions of Principal Percussionist with the Lexington Philharmonic and drummer with the Kentucky Jazz Repertory Orchestra.
James also serves as Past-President of the Percussive Arts Society (PAS) and received their PAS Lifetime Achievement in Education Award in 2019. He was inducted into the PAS Hall of Fame in 2021, an honor that recognizes the contributions of the most highly regarded professional leaders in percussion performance, education, research, scholarship, administration, composition and the industry. Inductees demonstrate the highest ideals and professional integrity to their profession to bring about significant events, substantive improvements in the world of percussion, and the betterment of the profession through exemplary services or acts.
Having worked with several DCI member drum and bugle corps, James is well known for his long past association with the internationally renowned Rosemont Cavaliers, with whom he served as principal instructor, arranger, and Program Coordinator. He was inducted into the Drum Corps International Hall of Fame in 2008. He served as Percussion Director for the McDonald’s All-American High School Band and was inducted into the Bands of America Hall of Fame, which recognizes individuals who have greatly impacted the nation’s band activity and music education.
As a performer, James has appeared at the International Society of Music Education World Conference, International Patagonia Percussion Festival, Journèes de la Percussion, PercuSonidos Percussion Festival, Swedish Arts and Musicians Interest Organization, Australian Percussion Eisteddfod, MENC National In-Service Conference, Midwest Band & Orchestra Clinic, MusicFest Canada, All-Japan Band Clinic, The Music for All World Percussion Symposium, State MEA conventions across the country, and frequently appears as an artist at the Percussive Arts Society International Conventions (PASIC).
Among his award-winning works for percussion, James has published with Meredith Music, C. Alan Publications, Innovative Percussion, Row-Loff Productions, Bachovich Music Publications, Alfred Publications., and Tapspace Publications. James is an artist and endorsee for Innovative Percussion, Evans Drumheads, Meinl Percussion, and a member of the Black Swamp Percussion Educator Network. He is an Artist and Educator for the Avedis Zildjian Cymbal Company and a Performing Artist for Yamaha Corporation of America, Band & Orchestra Division, who recently presented him with their Legacy Award.
Susan Powell is currently Professor and Director of Percussion Studies at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. Powell is well known as a mallet keyboard specialist and considered one of the foremost ragtime soloists of her generation. Having a particular interest in increasing the repertoire and visibility of the xylophone as a featured musical voice, Powell has commissioned and composed multiple works for the instrument in this setting. She is the founder and director of LULU & Co. Novelty Ragtime Band, where she is featured as a xylophone soloist, arranger, and composer. She has presented showcase sessions and clinics at the Percussive Arts Society International Conventions, the Midwest Clinic, as well as multiple OMEA (Ohio Music Educators Association) conferences. An active chamber performer, she often appears with the Pendulum Duo and Sympatico Percussion Group at festivals, universities, and Percussive Arts Society events across the country. She has performed as a solo and chamber musician across the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Europe, and is the recipient of both the OSU Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching and the School of Music Distinguished Teacher. She currently serves as Secretary for the Ohio Chapter of the Percussive Arts Society and her compositions are published by Keyboard Percussion Publications, Musicon Publications, and Whirlygigs Collective. Powell holds degrees from the Eastman School of Music (BM) and Northwestern University (MM, DM) and is an artist/ educational endorser for Malletech, where her signature line of xylophone mallets will be available in the spring of 2024. Additional endorsements include Zildjian Cymbals, Remo Percussion, and Grover Pro Percussion.
UT Percussion Faculty
Andrew Bliss is a solo artist, conductor, curator, and educator who maintains a dynamic career of musical collaboration. Residing in Knoxville, TN, his performances have been heard locally at the Tennessee Theatre and the Square Room, and abroad in locations such as the Darmstadt Summer Course for New Music (Germany), the Banff Centre for the Arts (Canada), the Patagonia Percussion Festival (Argentina), the LiveWire Festival in Baltimore, and Stanford’s Cantor Center for Visual Arts.
His repertoire ranges from 20th-century masterworks by John Cage, Iannis Xenakis, and Steve Reich, to the performance and advocacy of contemporary composers such as John Luther Adams, David Lang, and Mark Applebaum. His passion for new music has propelled Andy to collaborate on new works with a wide range of today’s leading composers and musicians such as Christopher Adler, Christopher Burns, Evan Chapman, David Crowell, Nicholas Deyoe, Marc Mellits, Lewis Nielson, and Anna Thorvaldsdottir, among many others.
Last season, Andy returned to Knoxville’s Big Ears Festival, revisiting John Luther Adams’ Four Thousand Holes with the nief-norf Project and performing Become Ocean with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra; joined Atlanta’s Chamber Cartel for an evening-length performance of Iannis Xenakis’ Pleaides at the Goat Farm Arts Center; presented the Percussive Arts Society (PAS) International Convention’s New Literature Showcase Concert; appeared in solo recitals at the McCormick Marimba Festival in Tampa, FL and the statewide PAS Day of Percussion in Illinois; and collaborated in Lexington, KY with Dieter Hennings and an all-star cast on a performance of Pierre Boulez’s Le Marteau sans maître.
In the 2016-17 season, Andy will perform on double tenors in Brooklyn’s Panorama with the Crossfire Steel Orchestra; curates the PASIC Focus Day “Celebrating the European Avant-Garde,” a 6-concert event over two days; performs Jennifer Higdon’s percussion concerto under the composer’s baton; conducts the Eastern United States premiere of Mark Applebaum’s Rabbit Hole; directs a performance of Michael Pisaro’s Hearing Metal 3; and performs the world premiere of Constellations by Christopher Burns, an evening-length work for solo percussion and multimedia, written for Bliss.
Andy has made a practice of regularly working with younger composers, performers, and scholars, encouraging inquisitive modes of musical questioning and sustained collaboration with future generations. He is the Artistic Director of nief-norf, whose summer festival is now in its seventh year; there he performs, teaches, and conducts while curating a dozen concerts annually. The festival serves as a yearly contemporary music retreat, where more than fifty international participants enjoy an immersive environment of collaboration, experimentation, and support. Additionally, since 2011, Andy has served as the Director of Percussion Studies at the University of Tennessee, where he founded the Ensemble Knox (resident chamber percussion group), the UT Contemporary Music Ensemble, and the UT Contemporary Music Festival.
A devoted music educator, Andy has presented recitals, lectures, and master classes at the Northern Illinois University New Music Festival, Sewanee Summer Music Festival, National Conference on Percussion Pedagogy (NCPP), Association for Technology in Music Instruction’s (ATMI) National Conference, and the Midwest Band & Orchestra Clinic, and has held residencies at the Universities of Alabama, Arizona, Kentucky, South Carolina, and many others. He currently serves the Percussive Arts Society as a member of the New Music Research committee and is Past President of the PAS Tennessee Chapter. Bliss has served on the adjudication jury for both the Music for All National Percussion Festival and the PAS International Percussion Ensemble Competition, and his method book Multitudes (Innovative Percussion) is a widely used pedagogical resource nationally. As a member of the Knoxville community, Bliss spends two weeks annually touring his Steelband and Brazilian Ensemble to Knox County public schools, fusing live performance with cultural and historical community engagement.
A native of Milan, IL, Andy’s percussion studies were mentored by James Campbell, Rich Holly, Robert Chappell, Orlando Cotto, Liam Teague, Cliff Alexis, and the Madison Scouts Drum & Bugle Corps. He is proud to be a Yamaha Performing Artist and thanks Zildjian, Innovative Percussion, Evans, Black Swamp, and Meinl Percussion for their generous support and sponsorships. When not performing or with his students, Andy can be found consuming as much baseball as possible––either watching the Chicago Cubs on television, or playing a game of backyard catch with his wife Erin, and their son, Donovan.
Kevin Zetina is a passionate performer, composer, and arranger of all things contemporary whether it be performing seminal works of the last century, premiering or writing brand new works, or arranging heavy metal music for contemporary classical ensembles. He has performed with members of Eighth Blackbird, Ensemble Signal, the JACK Quartet, and the Bang on a Can All-Stars. As a performer, Kevin is a percussionist with multitudes of experience in contemporary music. Having grown up as a guitarist focused on various sorts of death metal, Kevin has always been drawn to music that is experimental in nature. In this effort to push experimentation in music Kevin started the first student-run new music ensemble at the Yale School of Music: Versicolor. The group champions composers who would otherwise be underrepresented and provides a space for contemporary music at Yale. Kevin has played frequently with the Austin based contemporary chamber music group, Density 512. Currently he champions a diverse array of contemporary music through his direction of the University of Tennessee Percussion Ensemble.
Kevin currently serves as Adjunct Professor of Percussion at the University of Tennessee Knoxville where he teaches applied lessons to percussion majors and directs the UT Percussion Ensemble. Outside of collegiate teaching he has worked with students at all levels on instruments including drum-set, percussion, guitar, and piano. He has taught private percussion lessons for undergraduate students at Yale College and high school students at the Cheshire Academy, a private college preparatory boarding school in Connecticut. His students at Yale College, all of whom were non-music majors, have excelled comparably to conservatory students through winning spots at summer music festivals as well as the College Band Director’s National Association’s Intercollegiate Band. Kevin has also worked with high school students in Texas as a Marching Percussion Instructor and has guided many young percussionists as a private lesson teacher throughout the Round Rock/Leander area. While there, he coached the Walsh MS Honor Band as they were invited to perform at the Midwest Clinic.
Kevin holds a BM from the Eastman School of Music with the Howard Hanson Scholarship where he studied with Michael Burritt, and he earned his MM and MMA degrees from Yale University as a Havemeyer Scholarship recipient under Robert van Sice.
Keith Brown is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Tennessee where in addition to teaching applied drum set, he is the Director of Jazz Bands and coordinator of small Jazz Ensembles. He is an active performer playing regularly with several groups including the trio Boling, Brown, & Holloway, and the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra where he has performed with (among others) Monty Alexander, Mulgrew Miller, Hank Jones, John Clayton, Maceo Parker, Wycliffe Gordon, James Moody, Jimmy Heath, Terrel Stafford, Conrad Herwig, Dan Trudell, Stefon Harris, Karrin Allyson, Gregory Porter, Ingrid Jensen, John Pizzarelli, Ken Peplowski, Eric Reed, James Morrison, Warren Wolf, Cecile McLorin Salvant, and Christian McBride
He has also performed with Zim Ngqawana, Marvin Stamm, Doc Severinsen, Tommy Flanagan, Jerry Coker, Rick Simerly, Will Campbell, Greg Tardy, Donald Brown, Jeff Coffin and others.
He is featured on numerous CDs including several with the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra, and Boling, Brown, & Holloway. His recording with South African Saxophonist Zim Ngqawana Zimology In Concert (USA 2008) won a SAMA for best traditional jazz recording in 2008.
He is an active clinician giving both drum set workshop/clinics and with regional honor jazz bands.
He endorses Meinl cymbals and Innovative Percussion drumsticks. He is very involved with the Percussive Arts Society and has contributed articles to its official publication.