The percussion ensemble is a relatively recent development in the field of music. The first purely percussion music was written in the 1930s, and since 1980, this medium has gained tremendous recognition throughout the world.
The Contemporary Percussion Ensemble in the Arizona State University Herberger Institute School of Music strives to increase performer and audience awareness of the contributions to the literature by major composers, such as Edgard Varese, Lou Harrison, John Cage and Steve Reich, as well as new literature.
J. B. Smith, director of percussion studies, and Faculty Associate Simone Mancuso direct the group.