Associate Professor of Music 

High School Students


2016 Honor Percussion Ensemble

Application Guidelines

Festival Dates - March 31st - April 2nd, 2016

Applications Deadline March 1st, 2016

Come and be a part of an All Star Percussion Ensemble comprised of the most outstanding high school percussionists in Tennessee and beyond!!! Out of State applicants - Welcomed.

For additional questions contact Dr. Julie Hill at

Download the Honor Percussion Ensemble flyer

The 11th Annual Drum Line Tune Up Day

Saturday, August 22nd, 2015


Featuring Guest Artist Julie Davila and a performance by the UTM Marching Percussion Section.


Also featuring door prizes from our fantastic sponsors!


Click here for more information or contact Julie Hill at

Please contact Julie Hill, Director of Percussion Studies, to schedule an audition to be admitted as a Music Major specializing in percussion at UTM. 

2016 Audition Dates

Monday February 15, All Day- As part of the UTM JR/SR Day. Appointment Required



By Appointment. Contact Dr. Julie Hill at


Undergraduate Degrees in Music Education or Music Performance (at instructor's approval only)

The audition process at UT Martin is designed to make sure you are ready to enter, and able to complete our music program. We want you to graduate in four years so the audition is our best indicator of knowing if being a music major is the best fit for you. Audition preparation is crucial, so I urge you to take the requirements below seriously. UT Martin requirements may be different from other universities so please make sure you look through the required categories below.

The most important rule to remember is to choose music you are passionate about! Music performed at a high level, with feeling and musicality, will outshine difficult music played unmusically any day of the week!
I encourage you to use the categories below as a guildeline, but the music itself should be something you can perform with confidence and passion.

Additionally, I will take time to speak with you (and/or your parents) before or after the audition to answer any questions that you have. There will also be time for me to ask you questions about your goals and what you want to accomplish in 4 years. This is a screening process that works both ways and you are interviewing me and our music program as much as I am interviewing you.

Scholarships are awarded based on merit and playing ability. Students who successfully audition for Senior High All Region Bands (All West, Mid State, or All East) and All State Ensembles, automatically qualify for scholarships. Academic Scholarships may be available for you as well depending on the ACT score. I will walk you through these options at the interview.

You must prepare 3 percussion areas

Area 1 must be marimba or vibes (a 4 mallet selection is strongly encouraged)

Area 2 must be concert snare drum

Area 3 is your option and may be chosen from timpani, multiple percussion, drum set, or another "world" percussion instruments

AREA 1 -Mallet Keyboard (4)
Suggested Works (or other equivalent level selection): 
Rotation (I,II,III,or IV), Rosebud, Ghanaia, Over the Moon, Mexican Dances, Prelude I (Burritt), With Sunshine on His Face

• Sight Reading (two mallets) 
AREA 2- Snare Drum (concert)
Suggested Works (or other equivalent level selection):
Cirone Etude, Delecleuse Etude, Aleo Etude, Tompkins Etude, Three Dances Mvt. 1, Etude from 6 Unaccompanied Solos by Colgrass

• Selected rudiments from the 40 Percussive Arts Society International Drum Rudiments played in “open to closed to open” style. 

• Sight Reading

AREA 3 - Choose 1 of the following
Suggested Works (or other equivalent level selection):
Beck solo timpani work, Etude from Ron Fink's Timpani Tuning Etudes book

Multiple Percussion
Suggested Works (or other equivalent level selection):
An Etude from Julie Hill and Jim Campbell's, Music for Multiple Percussion: A World View, Tork or Engine Room by Campbell, or a movement from the French Suite by Kraft.
Drum Set/Hand Percussion
Suggested Works (or other equivalent level selection):
Demonstration of styles of your choice (including time, fills, soloing). Samba, soca, funk, bossa nova, jazz, rock, songo, etc.., are some suggestions. You may combine several of these if you wish.
A riq or pandeiro solo by N. Scott Robinson or a djembe solo by B. Michael Williams
Please note that auditionees must play from original scores of their selected music – no duplicated copies will be allowed.  

If a personal audition is not possible, you may submit a videotaped audition (audio recordings will not be acceptable for auditions). However, only live auditions can be considered for a scholarship. 


The “Skyhawk” Marching Band allows anyone to audition for snare drum, front ensemble, multi-tenors, bass drum and cymbals. Placement auditions for non-music majors are held during the pre-season "Pre Camp". Contact Director of Bands, Dr. John Oelrich in the UTM Band Office or visit their web site ( for further information.  

All questions pertaining to repertoire, auditions, or curriculum can be directed to: 

Julie Hill 
Professor of Music 
Director of Percussion Studies

Dan Piccolo 
Lecturer of Music 
Assistant Director of Percussion Studies

Current information on student activities can be found on the UT Martin Music website

Helpful letter for Parents 
Preparing for Life as a College Percussion Major by James Campbell


Hello Students and Parents,

Here are some tips as you prepare yourself to audition and hopefully begin the UT Martin Percussion Program!

By joining PAS, the largest percussion organization in the world, you’ll instantly begin to invest in your future like a professional. PAS is a tremendous resource and you will begin to see the benefits of membership immediately.


By watching our videos and following our events throughout the year, you’ll know if being in our family is the right choice for you. Music is a tough discipline and not to be entered into lightly, but also very very rewarding when you are surrounded by like-minded hearts and minds. We have a very strong web presence so it’s pretty easy to get a taste of our philosophy before you step on campus.


By scheduling a campus visit, you’ll get a true taste of what it’s like to be a UTM Music Major specializing in percussion. The Jr/Sr Day is the best time to come and audition, but if you want to come at another time, PLEASE email me at in advance so I can check my calendar to see if I am in town and also carve out some free time to be with you.


If there is anything I can do to help you, don’t hesitate to contact me – Best, Dr. Hill


P.S. Below is a list of items you should begin to work on gathering as soon as you can!

Required Equipment/Texts in the UT Martin Percussion Studio:

Acquiring percussion equipment is the responsibility of each individual. A wide variety of mallets and instruments are necessary to properly study and perform solo and ensemble music. For a serious student, collecting percussion equipment begins early in one's career and will probably continue throughout the professional life. The old adage is certainly true of musicians: If you are going to buy something, make it the best. A good piece of equipment is an investment and will last a lifetime.


Some students find it practical to give their family and relatives a percussion catalog to use for gift ideas at birthdays and holidays. Steve Weiss has most of these items for the lowest price: or 215-659-0100


The following is a minimum requirement for new students at the University of Tennessee at Martin. These items should be acquired before the first semester of study begins:


Required Mallet/Sticks with Suggested Models

  • 1 pair, General purpose snare drum sticks: Innovative Percussion IP-JC model; or equivalent.

  • 1 pair, light duty (jazz) drum set sticks: Innovative Percussion ES-1, ES-2, or equivalent.

  • 1 pair, brushes: Innovative Percussion IP-BR 1 or equivalent.

  • 1 pair, multi-mallet: Innovative Percussion JC-1M, JC-2M or equivalent.

  • 1 pair, combo sticks: Innovative Percussion IP-1M or equivalent.

  • 1 pair of each of the following: marimba mallets from soft to hard, Innovative Percussion Nebojsa Zivkovic NJZ1, NJZ2, NJZ3,NJZ4,NJZ5,NJZ6,NJZ7 or equivalent.

  • 1 pair of each of the following: marimba mallets from soft to hard, Innovative Percussion Janis Potter JP401, JP402, JP403, JP404, JP405 or equivalent.

  • 2 pair of each, vibe/ensemble mallets: Innovative Percussion Anders Astrand, AA15 and AA25.

  • 1 pair, hard rubber mallets: Innovative Percussion ENS360 or ENS360R or equivalent.

  • 1 pair of each of the following: orchestral bell and xylophone mallets from soft to hard, Innovative Percussion James Ross Series, IP 901, 902, 903, 904, 905, 906 or equivalent.

  • 1 pair, General timpani mallets: Innovative Percussion CT-3; Black Swamp #3/Purple or equivalent.

  • 1 pair, Super-Staccato timpani mallets: Innovative Percussion CT-6; Black Swamp #6/Black or equivalent.

Required Instruments/Equipment

  • Tuning fork/pitch pipe: "A 440" for tuning timpani.

  • Practice Pad: HQ Percussion "Real Feel" 12 inch double-sided model.

  • A phone or other type recorder that can be used to record yourself in daily practice.

  • High Quality Head Phones that can plug into your metronome of be used for drum set and Latin percussion play along practice

  • Triangle: Grover Super Overtone (6 inch); Alan Abel Symphonic Model (6 inch,) or equivalent.

  • Set of triangle beaters: Grover (tubular), Stoessel, or equivalent.

  • Tambourine: Grover 10-inch Double row, Silver/Bronze combination, Beryllium copper or equivalent.

  • Frame Drum with Jingles (med size), Remo or Cooperman recommended

  • A metronome, preferably a battery operated one that can be used with a headphone, is required at every lesson. A good model is "Dr. Beat"(Roland DB-60.

  • Stick case/bag: Innovative Tour Bag (MB-3), large attaché case (such as the Firth mallet case), or sample case. Most students acquire several bags and cases to hold all their equipment.

  • Have a rubber stamp or adhesive labels made that can identify your music and books. A paint stick or colored tape will help identify your mallets.

  • Two (2) black hand towels. You will use these to accommodate silent mallet changes when you set them on music stands.

  • Dress for UT Martin Percussion Ensemble concerts will be black or solid colored long sleeve shirt/blouse, black slacks/skirt and black dress shoes (No athletic shoes!). Most large ensembles in the School of Music ask you to provide a tuxedo/black dress for concert performances as well. Company T-shirt/casual attire will be required/provided as well

  • 1-UTM Percussion t shirts will be provided for you as a lower division student and then a second one if you need when you become an upper division student. If you lose your t shirt, a $10 charge will be required to obtain another one.

Required Music Texts

other texts than the ones listed below may be assigned, consult Dr. Hill before purchase



Masterworks for Mallets, Beth Gotlieb (Row-Loff Productions)


Snare and additional rudimental instruments:

Portraits in Rhythm (Complete Study Guide), Anthony J. Cirone (Belwin Mills).
French American Etudes and Solos (exact text TBD), Joe Tompkins (Bachovich Music Pub.)
Advanced Etudes for Snare Drum, Keith Aleo (Honeyrock Pub.)


Multiple Percussion:

Music for the Multi Percussionist: A World View, Julie Hill and James Campbell (Alfred Pub.)



Exercises, Etudes and Solos for the Timpani, Raynor Carroll (Batterie Music).
The Working Timpanist’s Survival Guide, John Tafoya, (Carl Fischer Pub.)



Maiden Voyage (14 Easy to Play Jazz Tunes), Jamey Abersold (Abersold Jazz).
Voicing and Comping for Jazz Vibraphone, Thomas David (Hal Leonard).


Drum set:

Groove Essentials: The Play Along, Tommy Igoe (Hudson Music).


World Percussion and Ethnic Instruments:

Assigned as needed


Other Required Texts:

The Savvy Musician, David Cutler (
Working Towards Excellence, Paul Buyer (
The Percussionist’s Art: Same Bed, Different Dreams, Steven Schick (
A Practical Guide To Percussion Terminology, Russ Girsberger (Meredith Music).


These are minimum requirements; most percussion students will acquire more mallets, instruments and accessories during their years in college. During the course of each semester you should plan on purchasing additional mallets, music and accessories as necessary. Try to budget at least $300/semester for such expenditures.