Our steel drum program is comprised of two ensembles: a beginner and advanced group. Both ensembles meet everyday during school hours and the advanced band members are required to attend a one-hour sectional every week. McCallum’s beginner band is open to any student in the high school, including first-time musicians and special needs students. Along with learning how to read music, students learn the history and culture of steel drums and Trinidad. Students are also exposed to many different styles of music including: Soca, Calypso, Samba, Bossa Nova, Reggae, Funk, and Rock. Members are also introduced to improvisation and everyone is given an opportunity to solo. Students present four in-school performances and numerous of out of school performances each year (primarily the advanced group). Our advanced band is open to students through audition. Students expand their knowledge of the instrument’s history and Trinidad’s culture. Students are again exposed to a number of different styles of music. Improvisation is taught more in-depth and practiced frequently. Throughout the year this ensemble builds a large repertoire allowing them to work as a band for hire, performing out side of school over 20 times. Another great aspect of our program is our close relationship with clinician CJ Menge. Our students have the opportunity to work with CJ on a regular basis and perform along side his community steel band Inside Out ( Every year we also have guest performers from around the world including: Ray Holman, Ellie Mannette, Tom Miller, and Phil Hawkins.