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Percussion Studies at Carson-Newman


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Download 2014 C-N Drumline Audition Material here:






All prospective members of the 2014 C-N Drumline are required to attend the three audition clinics in Room 117 of the Tarr Music Center:

Tuesday, April 15th, 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, April 22nd, 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, April 29th, 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.


Information for Prospective Music Majors in Percussion:

Prospective students interested in scholarship consideration must arrange an audition with Mr. Weyer and Pat Bivens.  Contact mattweyer@gmail.com to arrange an audition.  Prospective students are expected to prepare the following material: 

Required Audition Material:

Keyboard Percussion: Prospective students should prepare a two-mallet or four-mallet solo to demonstrate technique and musicianship, as well as preparing the twelve major scales and chromatic scale full-range on the marimba.  Students should also be prepared to sight read at the marimba.  Carson-Newman will provide a 5 octave Musser synthetic marimba with adjustable height.

Snare Drum: Prospective students should prepare a concert or rudimental solo or etude to demonstrate technique and musicianship, as well as preparing the 40 PAS rudiments, to be played slow-fast-slow.  The multiple bounce roll should be played soft-loud-soft.  Students should be prepared to demonstrate sight reading in a concert style.  Carson-Newman will provide a Yamaha Grand Symphonic Rosewood (GSR 1450) snare drum.

Timpani: Prospective students should prepare a solo or etude to demonstrate technique, musicianship, and tuning ability on timpani.  Carson-Newman will provide 4 Adams timpani (32”, 29”, 26”, 23”) with tuning gauges.

 Optional Audition Material: 

Multiple Percussion: Prospective students may choose to perform an etude/solo on any combination of percussion instruments.  Please verify in advance that any needed instruments will be available.

Drumset: Prospective students may choose to perform a solo or other material to demonstrate time-keeping and stylistic proficiency on drumset.  Please verify in advance that any needed sound equipment for play-along tracks will be available on the audition day.


General Information about Percussion Studies at Carson-Newman:


Download the C-N Percussion Studies Handbook here:



The philosophy of the Carson-Newman percussion studio is to provide classes, ensembles, and applied instruction to develop each student to the most advanced level of musicianship possible. In pursuit of this goal, percussion students at Carson-Newman will be expected to achieve at a high level through a rigorous applied curriculum and quality ensembles. It is the responsibility of the student to meet these expectations through hard work and attention to detail in his/her preparation for each applied lesson and ensemble rehearsal.

According to this vision, percussionists who successfully complete a music degree program at Carson-Newman will be fully prepared for a career in performance, education, composition, or any other professional occupation in the field of music. It is the intent of the percussion program at Carson-Newman to produce graduates who meet a national standard of excellence and are able to compete for employment with graduates of any collegiate music program in the nation. To meet this goal, the percussion studio will operate under high academic and performance expectations consistent with these standards.

The term “Percussion Studies” refers to the various course and ensemble offerings related to the percussion studio. This includes the following areas:

The wind ensemble and concert bands at Carson-Newman offer students an opportunity to play standard, high-quality literature and develop ensemble skills essential for any teacher or performer. Percussionists in the concert bands are expected to be musically prepared for each rehearsal and work together as a section to cover all the musical responsibilities in the section.

The percussion ensemble offers students the opportunity to perform chamber music and large ensemble literature. Members of the percussion ensemble will learn skills related to performing without a conductor and using player cues and listening skills to achieve precision and musicianship. This format is very different from performing in a large ensemble with a conductor. Percussion Ensemble members are expected to be musically prepared for each rehearsal, and the rehearsal schedule will be posted in advance. The Percussion Ensemble class will also include “studio class” sessions to discuss basic collegiate percussion concepts and “percussion lab” format to develop new areas of performance and offer students the opportunity to rehearse and conduct the percussion ensemble. Percussion Ensemble performances will showcase the skills and the philosophy of the percussion studio and serve as a visible, flagship ensemble of the percussion program at Carson-Newman University.

The Carson-Newman Marching Eagles represent the department of music in performances on campus, such as football games and parades, and also represent the College in exhibition performances throughout the area. The Marching Eagles Drumline is an essential segment of the marching band and provides an incredible performance opportunity and educational experience to its members. The drumline experience at Carson-Newman is characterized by diligent work habits, taking pride in achieving a high level of excellence, and forming lifelong friendships with other percussionists. Audition information is available from Mr. Weyer or Pat Bivens.

Students majoring in music education at Carson-Newman are required to complete one semester of percussion methods class, which is offered in the spring semester of odd-numbered years (2013, 2015, etc.). This class offers a blend of hands-on “lab” training and academic concepts related to teaching and developing the percussion segment of the band program at the middle-school and high-school levels. A course outline and list of required materials is available from Mr. Weyer.


About Mr. Weyer:

Matt Weyer directs the percussion studio at Carson-Newman University with responsibilities including private studio instruction, directing the percussion ensemble, assisting with the Carson-Newman marching band, and teaching the percussion methods course for music education majors. In addition to these duties, Matt is the founder of Contemporary Percussion Concepts, a consulting and educational activity specializing in percussion lessons, clinics, arranging, group instruction, and program consulting.

From 2005 - 2008, Mr. Weyer served as the percussion director at Plano West Senior High School in Plano, Texas, a position which involved teaching and supervision of percussion at six schools in the “west cluster” of Plano ISD. Matt’s duties in Plano included directing multiple percussion ensembles, leading the steel band, directing and arranging for the multiple drumlines, coaching the multiple concert band and orchestra percussion sections, and teaching 40 – 50 private lessons per week. During this period of time, the percussion groups under Mr. Weyer’s direction received high ratings and were recognized in the area for their excellence.

Mr. Weyer has also held the positions of assistant band director/percussion director at Clinton High School in Clinton, Tennessee, and assistant band director at Gatesville High School in Gatesville, Texas. Matt holds the Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education from the University of Tennessee and a Master of Music degree in Music Performance from the University of Georgia, where he partially completed additional course work toward the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Music Performance. Originally from Charlottesville, Virginia, Matt is a proud alumnus of the 1999 Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps of Toledo, Ohio, and lives in Powell, Tennessee with his wife, Missi.

Contact Mr. Weyer at mattweyer@gmail.com. 















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