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Hi :)

I want to ask two questions regarding percussion instruments used in orchestra.

1. What are kind of practices to improve the skills of playing percussion instruments?
2. What are the functions of percussion instruments in orchestra, or any other events?

This is for my school project work. I hope you can help. Thanks!

Hi Edwina,

What a percussionist practices depends on a few things. Which instrument they are working on, wether they are trying to improve technique or learning repertoire and working on their sound. In terms of technique, lets talk about 2 instruments. First, snare drum. Perfecting the rudiments is a great way to work on technique. Rudiment info at: For timpani a percussionist will work on rolls and different types of strokes among other things. As I mentioned, a percussionist will also study the excerpts from the important pieces of the orchestral repertoire.
What I've mentioned here is a small overview of what should be practiced by an orchestral percussionist. Feel free to ask me more questions..
Hope this helped.


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Mike Shapiro


I can answer questions regarding drum and percussion subjects. If you have a question about technique, rudiments, grooves, fills, styles, reading (etc.) in relation to the drum set... ask away! I'm also able to help with timpani, vibes, marimba and hand percussion. I can also answer questions regarding the purchasing of drum and percussion instruments and accessories, including vintage and current items. I can help with restoration projects or research with the history of percussion instruments, music, repertoire, manufacturers etc.


I've been playing professionally and teaching music for 25 years. I'm involved in many genres of music and have played with a wide range of musicians from Todd Rundgren to Zubin Mehta. I'm also very interested in the instruments themselves and have owned or played many interesting ones.

Professional Drum Teachers Guild

Bachelor of Music, The Juilliard School

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