the annual workshop is the first week of August each summer
Desautels Faculty of Music, University of Manitoba
“Are there female performers on all kinds of instruments? Certainly… [but] there must have been a fine spirit of enterprise in the soul of a woman who took up the study of the tympani. How many jobs are there for the female tympanist? What is the outlook for the female bassoonist? Does anyone wish to see a woman playing the bass drum or an E-flat tuba?… Well, it is a all a matter of custom. Students in such institutions as the Juilliard School of Music see women playing in their orchestra continually and think nothing of it.”
William J. Henderson, Dean of New York Music Critics was quoted making this statement in 1935.
This quote raises a few questions, and definitely my eyebrows, and I wouldn’t go so far as to say that the subject is closed, but as a woman who plays a bass drum on a regular basis, I am happy to report that, 80 years later,
it doesn’t seem to bother anyone…!