Neatly arranged and well maintained equipment sets the tone for the rehearsal and the year.Show the percussionists where the instruments should be placed at the first rehearsal, and insist on that “set up” for each rehearsal throughout the school year.Inside the Section “Bookend” your section with the bass drum and the chimes.
However, if percussionists always start with a basic instrument arrangement, they will know where to move, if the music requires fast instrument changes.
This will also reduce the amount of time spent searching for instruments before rehearsals.
I have found that leaving the stands set up, storing and securing only the snare drum, cymbals, bass drum mallets, and small instruments (tambourine, triangle, wood block, etc.) while covering the larger instruments, makes for a quick set up at the beginning of rehearsal, and consistently organized section.
The percussion section can be arranged differently, depending on repertoire requirements and the preference of the band or orchestra director.
Place them next to each other for better ensemble and balance.
Percussion Assignment Chart
The bass drummer can help “conduct” the section on tutti entrances.
The results are directly proportional to the persistence of the teacher.
The good news is that in the end, less rehearsal time will be spent setting up and searching for instruments, and more time will be spent making music.
Adding small hand percussion parts (tambourine, triangle, cowbell, suspended cymbal, congas) will help to keep everyone busy rather than dividing the drum set part among many players.
Keyboard Instruments Placing the xylophone, bells and the chimes next to each other will help facilitate fast instrument changes.