Indiana University

Percussion Department

John Tafoya

Chair, Percussion Department

The IU- Jacobs School of Music has a long history of excellence, featuring a world-class performance faculty comprised of soloists, orchestra members, chamber musicians and jazz artists.

The faculty also boasts music scholars, award-winning composers, NEA recipients, Pulitzer Prize winners and Jazz Masters. This, combined with a wide variety of performance opportunities, including symphony (5), opera, and ballet orchestras: concert (3) and marching bands; percussion, steel pan and hand drumming ensembles; jazz big bands and combos; creates a very active and exciting atmosphere for a large talented pool of young performers.

Students in the BM, BME, MM, MME, DM programs in percussion performance study with faculty members who possess impressive performance and educational credentials. Percussionists are trained in virtually every aspect of percussion performance including: orchestral percussion, timpani, solo marimba, chamber percussion, drumset and world percussion. Percussion students working toward the BM or MM in Jazz Studies will perfect their drumset and jazz mallet skills while gaining a better understanding of the other percussion areas.

The IU percussion studio eventually rotates through all of the professors, thus covering all of the above areas. Music education is at the core of everything we do as a department, thereby preparing the students to teach as well.

I hope that our website will provide you with a glimpse into the exciting world of IU percussion. Please take a moment to get to know the faculty and the programs that we have to offer. Also be sure to view our wonderful facilities. Free podcasts of recent IU Jacobs School of Music performances may be found here.

Please feel free to contact me at if you are in need of any further information. Better yet, come and visit us on campus and see us in action!

John Tafoya, Percussion Department Chairman