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About the Percussion Program

The Percussion Studies Program at Centre College is designed with a comprehensive approach to the study and performance of literature in all styles and idioms of music. The goal of the percussion curriculum is to develop musicianship, technical proficiency, cultural awareness, and technological literacy in both performance and pedagogy. Regardless of degree concentration, the undergraduate student will maintain regular study of keyboard percussion and additional directed areas based on individual goals and needs. The Percussion Studies Program provides professional-level experiences and opportunities for all students that foster growth through self-discipline, creativity, and entrepreneurship. Successful students will embrace these challenges as they develop a passion for life-long learning that will lead to a rewarding career. All students have the opportunity to perform in the large ensembles including the Wind Ensemble, Centre Orchestra, African Drum Ensemble, and the Centre Percussion Ensemble.

Feel free to contact us at anytime and thank you for your interest in our programs. To stay up-to-date with our latest events and information, please find us on Facebook and on Twitter.

Percussion Studio

The Centre Percussion Studio typically contains approximately 11 students. All students study privately with Dr. Brandon Arvay, director of Percussion Studies at Centre in weekly half (1/2) or one (1) full hour lessons. Additionally students participate in group classes on accessory percussion and timpani. Finally, all students have a minimum of 3 solo performances per semester via the studio solo classes, semester studio recital, and faculty juries or solo recitals.

Centre Percussion Ensemble

To maintain the global vision of Centre College, the curriculum focuses heavily on World percussion, including Brazilian and Caribbean Steel Drum ensembles. The Centre Percussion Ensemble maintains an active schedule giving between 2-4 performances each season and is open to ALL students at Centre–no experience necessary!

 African Drum Ensemble

The Centre College African Drum Ensemble is a performance ensemble that concentrates on the percussive music of Ghana and other West African countries. The ensemble utilizes authentic instruments to explore several styles of music that includes, but is not limited to, music primarily intended for dance and ritual. As in much African music, improvisation plays an important role, as well as the conceptualization and practice of interlocking rhythms. Due to the improvisatory nature of the music, little to no prior knowledge or experience is required to join the ensemble.


Additional Inquiry

All questions pertaining to repertoire, auditions, or curriculum can be directed to:
Brandon M. Arvay, D.M.A.
Director of Centre College Percussion Ensemble
Adjunct Instructor of Percussion
Norton Center for the Arts, Grant Hall 103
E-mail: brandon.arvay@centre.edu


Justin Cornelison, M.M.
Director of African Drum Ensemble
Norton Center for the Arts, Grant Hall 103
E-mail: justin.cornelison@centre.edu


“I had a great time making music with my classmates! I’m so happy to have spent two hours a week with everyone in Percussion Ensemble!” – Sue Choi, 2016