Introducing Percussion is a comprehensive beginners’ introduction to the three main orchestral percussion disciplines: snare drum, timpani and tuned percussion, written by Mark Aldous, Peter Evans and Lorne Pearcey, and published by Trinity College London Press. It provides a basic and thorough grounding in basic technical principles of holding the sticks, achieving a clear, consistent tone from the instrument and also introduces elements of music reading.
Students from St Faith’s School, Cambridge perform three selected pieces, which have been newly added to the Trinity Percussion Syllabus 2020–2023 at Initial and Grade 1. These pieces are specially designed so that they can be played individually with backing tracks, or together in an ensemble, as demonstrated in these videos.
At all grades, the new repertoire lists include a wider range of styles to appeal to all musical tastes and ensure that there are pieces that students will enjoy learning and performing.
Ignition is the first performance piece in the Introducing Percussion book, and introduces us to basic note values: minims and crotchets. It is brought alive by a fully orchestral backing track, so that students can really feel like they’re standing at the back of the orchestra in the percussion section.
Blast Off comes a little later in the Introducing Percussion book, when students have been introduced to quavers. The three independent parts can be brought together to form an ensemble which is a really powerful way of using this material in lessons, and gives the students really important ensemble and aural development skills.
Destination reached comes at the end of the Introducing Percussion book and is set at Grade 1 level. In this more challenging and mature piece the cello in the backing track plays a beautiful melody which is enriched by the addition of tuned percussion.
Filmed at St Faith’s School, Cambridge, July 2019.