Join the Drumline


Membership in the Michigan Drumline is based on attitude, attendance, ability, and improvement. Most of the time, the students who make the most of Drum Tech, which begins in January, and the summer camps will be far more prepared when it comes time to set the line in mid August. Regardless of when you begin the audition process (Drum Tech or summer camps), your audition starts with an individual evaluation with instructor Chuck Ricotta.

You need not have an audition piece prepared, however as part of this evaluation you will be asked to demonstrate various techniques such as legato strokes, accent/tap timing, double/triple beat, rolls, and flam rudiments while focusing on quality of sound and rhythmic consistency. Students interested in bass drum and cymbals will be asked to demonstrate subdivision/timing exercises (i.e. clapping or playing on the beat, the "e" of the beat, the "and", and the "ah", etc.). This evaluation is NOT for acceptance to the drumline; it is simply a preliminary audition to best determine which section you are advised to audition for. From then on, your level of improvement from camp to camp is a major factor in determining your placement within the Michigan Drumline. The performance block for the season will be set during the first week of Band Week in mid-August.

The exercises and performance pieces we will be playing will be handed out during Drum Tech and summer camps. If you can not attend Drum Tech, email Chuck Ricotta so that you can have the music prepared when you arrive to the summer camps.

Drum Tech

Drum Tech is the official start to the audition process. It is held from January through April and is intended for anyone who is auditioning for this season's Michigan Drumline. University students may receive credit. Incoming Freshman (current High School Seniors) are encouraged to email Chuck Ricotta for more information. You should also have applied to the University of Michigan and either have been accepted, or are waiting to hear back.

  • Drum Tech meets Monday nights at Revelli Hall (directions) from 7:45pm-9:45pm.
  • You should bring a drum pad, sticks/mallets, any music we will be covering (in a three ring binder), and a pencil.
  • If you are planning to attend, please contact instructor Chuck Ricotta to be put on the class email list.

If you plan to audition for the drumline this year, please do consider attending Drum Tech. It is only to your benefit.

Summer Camps

Camps are required for anyone interested in auditioning for the Michigan Drumline. It is during these camps that the majority of the music is learned. All summer camps take place at Revelli Hall (directions).

Items to bring:

  • Sticks/Mallets
  • Three ring binder for music
  • Pencil
  • Drum pad (snares/tenors/basses only)
  • Water bottle
  • Bagged lunch (or money for lunch, many restaurants are located nearby)
  • Sun block
  • Sunglasses
  • Sneakers
  • Ear plugs
  • You need not bring your own instrument.

The dates for the summer camps change slightly from year to year.
The camp schedule for 2019:
Camp #1:
Saturday, May 11: 9am - 4pm
Sunday, May 12: 9am - 3pm
Camp #2:
Friday, June 21: 6pm - 9pm
Saturday, June 22: 9am - 6pm
Sunday, June 23: 9am - 1pm
Camp #3:
Monday, August 19: 9am - 6pm
Please note, this is the day before band week begins, so it will essentially be the first day of ‘band camp’.