Pre-College Percussion

Update (5/25/21): this program has been cancelled for 2021. We look forward to seeing you in 2022!

Designed for senior high percussionists, this program focuses on strengthening musicianship and technique fundamentals. The schedule includes clinics, masterclasses, and daily seminars. Students will be exposed to a wide range of repertoire and gain perspective on all facets of percussion practice and performance. Participants will also learn orchestral excerpts and receive advice on preparing for college auditions.

Format: interactive instruction via Zoom.


  • For students completing grades 8-12.
  • Students must be enrolled in private lessons and have experience on timpani and mallet percussion.

Tentative Pre-College Percussion Daily Schedule

10:00 – 11:00 AM: Clinic (per instrument)
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM: Masterclass
1:30 – 2:30 PM: Special Topics Sessions
2:30 – 3:30 PM: Individual Lessons (on instrument of choice)

Application Materials

  • Submit the ISYM Application Form
  • Participants only: Upload a 5 minute recording of your playing. Audio or video (cell phone quality) is acceptable, and your recording should contain 2 contrasting selections of your choice (e.g. snare drum and mallet percussion). Recordings are NOT used to determine your acceptance but for faculty purposes for class preparation. Files must be named “Last Name, First Name_Title of Selection”. Recordings are due no later than Sunday, June 13, 2021.
  • Acceptance notifications are sent on a rolling basis.
  • Additional accepted student information will be available after April 15, 2021.


  • $350 – Participant
    Participants will full access to all Pre-College Percussion program materials and sessions, including private lessons with the program faculty.
  • $100 – Auditor
    Auditors will be able to attend the 10 AM and 1:30 PM sessions only. Auditor eligibility: Students completing grades 6-8 with an interest in percussion.

Program Faculty

Ricardo Flores, University of Illinois

Artist, performer, and educator—Percussionist Ricardo Flores has been electrifying audiences for years playing classical percussion, drum set, and world percussion in orchestral, chamber, jazz, pop, Latin and many other musical settings. He joined the faculty at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2000 where he holds the title of Associate Professor on the Percussion Faculty specializing in drum set and Latin percussion and directs the Steel Band / World Percussion Ensemble.

Read more about Professor Flores here.

William Moersch, University of Illinois

William Moersch is internationally renowned as a marimba virtuoso, chamber and symphonic percussionist, recording artist, and educator. He has appeared as a soloist with symphonic orchestras and in recital throughout North and South America, Europe, the Far East, and Australia. A regularly featured artist at international percussion festivals, he has performed on more than seventy recordings and is perhaps best known for commissioning over the past thirty-five years much of the prominent modern repertoire for marimba, from composers including Irwin Bazelon, Richard Rodney Bennett, Martin Bresnick, Jacob Druckman, Eric Ewazen, David Lang, Paul Lansky, Libby Larsen, Steven Mackey, Akemi Naito, Roger Reynolds, Gunther Schuller, Joseph Schwantner, John Serry, Andrew Thomas, Alejandro Viñao, James Wood, and Charles Wuorinen. In addition, he was the first marimbist ever to receive a National Endowment for the Arts Solo Recitalist Fellowship and has also been honored by NEA Recording and Consortium Commissioning grants.

Read more about Professor Moersch here.