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Date of Award

Spring 2023

Document Type

Masters Thesis

Department or Program Affiliation

Department of Music

Degree Name

Master of Music (MMus)



First Advisor

Bourne, Patricia, 1957-

Second Advisor

Roulet, Patrick

Third Advisor

Bain, Paul (Band director)


The steel band, an ensemble of steel pans rooted in the Caribbean country of Trinidad and Tobago, has grown in the United States from nonexistent to substantial. Over 600 bands exist in the US in primary schools, secondary schools, universities, and community groups. Due to its intrinsic value as a unique, multicultural, and inclusive ensemble, the steel band is an effective tool for secondary music educators to provide a non-traditional ensemble for their students (i.e., an ensemble other than band, choir, or orchestra). To this point, research done in the areas of pedagogy and teaching methods for the steel band is limited. This thesis provides secondary music teachers with pedagogical and background knowledge in creating and teaching a steel band in their school or community. The research in this thesis includes a review of steel band literature, an examination of multicultural teaching frameworks, a survey of steel band educators, and interviews with two experienced directors.




steel pan, steel band, percussion, music education, pedagogy, multicultural studies, Trinidad and Tobago, Caribbean


Western Washington University

OCLC Number


Subject – LCSH

Steel bands (Music)--United States; Steel bands (Music)--Instruction and study--United States; Music teachers--United States; Multicultural education--United States

Geographic Coverage

United States




masters theses




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Rights Statement

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