Drumming at Episcopal Collegiate.
The percussion classes at Episcopal Collegiate School expose students in grades 6-12 to the world of drums and drumming, not only through acquiring the ability to perform on the individual instruments of the percussion family, but through the focused reading and research of drumming and the percussion heritage of different cultures from around the world.
Recent guest artists to visit Episcopal and work with the percussion classes include NEXUS, Neil Grover, Lisa Rogers, Chris Hanning, Dr. Ryan Lewis, and Dr. Norman Weinberg. Dr. Mike Vercelli (West Virginia University) visits every two years, working with the African Dance and Drumming ensembles on the gyil and West-African drumming traditions of Ghana.
The Episcopal steel band--the Steelcats--released their first CD in 2012, titled Live at Laman. The group has performed throughout the state of Arkansas, including performances with the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra and Pine Bluff Symphony. The group performed for the Capitol tree lighting ceremony in 2012 and has again been invited to perform in 2014. The Steelcats maintain an active performance schedule throughout the year, reaching out into the community to perform at local church events, retirement and assisted-living centers, community events in the Heights and Hillcrest, and for the Arkansas Symphony tailgate and street parties.