Allen Otte, James Culley and Russell Burge in Percussion Group Cincinnati.

The University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) is proud to recognize ensemble-in-residence Percussion Group Cincinnati for its induction into the Percussive Arts Society Hall of Fame. The ensemble, founded in 1979, consists of CCM faculty members Allen Otte (Emeritus, 2017), James Culley and Russell Burge.

Each year, the Percussive Arts Society chooses two to four individuals or groups to recognize as inductees into its hall of fame. This year, Percussion Group Cincinnati was selected alongside Andy Narell, Bobby Hutcherson and Zeferino Nandayapa. The Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be held Thursday, November 9, 2017 at the Indiana Convention Center.

Composer John Cage (far left) with Percussion Group Cincinnati.

Composer John Cage (far left) with Percussion Group Cincinnati.

Percussion Group Cincinnati is especially well known for its relationship with and performances of music by John Cage, who had a residency at CCM in 1967.  The group also emphasizes the promotion of new music by fostering relationships with living composers, such as John Luther Adams and Qu Xiao-Song.

Their daily rehearsal schedule over the decades has been supplemented with teaching and coaching student musicians, many of whom have gone on to professional careers in creative music, in teaching and with major symphony orchestras. Percussion Group Cincinnati has appeared in performances in major cities, festivals, concert halls and schools of America, Europe and Asia. Recent performances include the Shanghai International Spring Music Festival, a tour of Japan, and the premiere of a new concerto in Singapore with the Singapore Chinese Instrument Orchestra.

In addition to performing around the world, Percussion Group Cincinnati has made many recordings on several record labels, including Mode Records and their own label, ars moderno. The group participated in Mode Records’ project to release all of Cage’s music by creating Works for Percussion 1, an album that features two versions of Credo in US and several of Cage’s Imaginary Landscapes.

Previous inductees into the PAS Hall of Fame include Ringo Starr, modern composer and percussionist Steve Reich, 20th century jazz drummer Warren “Baby” Dodds, a few timpanists of the greatest orchestras and many contributors to the industry of percussion equipment, including Vic Firth and several members of the Zildjian family.

The Percussive Arts Society Hall of Fame was established in 1972 and recognizes the contributions of the most highly regarded professional leaders in percussion performance, education, research, scholarship, administration, composition and the industry. Inductees demonstrate the highest ideals and professional integrity to their profession to bring about significant events, substantive improvements in the world of percussion and the betterment of the profession through exemplary services or acts.

The Percussive Arts Society, established in 1961, has approximately 5,000 members in over 68 chapters around the world. Its mission is to inspire, educate and support percussionists and drummers around the world. Learn more at

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