Yamaha bestowed the company’s prestigious Legacy in Education Award on Marc Dicciani and Tom Aungst at the annual PASIC, held November 13–16 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Presented by John Wittmann, senior director, Artist Relations and Education, Yamaha, and Greg Crane, manager, Artist Relations, Yamaha Acoustic/DTX Drums, Yamaha, the award recognizes distinguished Yamaha Artists and music educators for their extraordinary service to, and impact on, the field of music education.
“Marc and Tom are more than deserving of this recognition for their unwavering dedication to music education,” said Wittmann. “They are wonderful examples of leaders who dedicate their lives to teaching others, and we couldn’t be happier to present them with this award for their service to the arts.”
Dicciani’s contributions as an educator, drummer, clinician, and author have been impactful on the lives of countless percussion students and organizations. He has led a fruitful career as a professional drummer and has made concert appearances with a wide variety of artists, including jazz musicians Phil Woods, Al Vizzutti, and Diane Schuur; singers Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., and Natalie Cole; pop artists Boyz II Men, the Spinners, and Joan Jett, as well as countless orchestras. Dicciani has also lectured, performed, and conducted clinics at several universities across the country. He is the dean of the College of Performing Arts at the University of the Arts (UArts) in Philadelphia, as well as a professor of Drum Set and Music Business. In addition, Dicciani directs the university’s bucket-drum ensemble, called Rumble, and a salsa ensemble, and produces the annual high school and college jazz festivals. He joined the Yamaha artist roster in 2004.
As a teacher and mentor, Tom Aungst has dedicated countless hours toward the education and development of his students, colleagues, and peers. Aungst has been involved in the Dartmouth, Mass. school system for the past 24 years and currently serves as the director of Percussion at Dartmouth Public Schools. Under his direction, Dartmouth has participated in the WGI indoor percussion activity since 1998, capturing five World Class Percussion Championships, and has consistently placed in the top three. Aungst is the program facilitator and battery arranger for The Cadets Drum & Bugle Corps, as well as a member of The Cadets, Drum Corps International, and the WGI Hall of Fame. He joined the Yamaha artist roster in 2000.
Each year, PASIC, the world’s largest percussion convention, features the top names in drumming and percussion and draws more than 5,000 attendees from around the globe. Previous luminaries who have received the Yamaha Legacy in Education Awards at PASIC include James Campbell, Dave Samuels, Dave Weckl, Jim Petercsak, and Bob Breithaupt, among many others. For more information on the Yamaha Artists roster, visit yamaha.com/artists.