Since 1996, Chris Colaneri has been directing percussion
ensembles and steel pan ensembles, leading drum circles, and giving group percussion lessons in the New York
and New Jersey public schools systems. He recently cofounded and is currently the president of the New Jersey Percussion Educators Association. As a vibist, marimbist, and Latin percussion performer, Chris has led his own jazz quartet, CCQ, since 1997. This ensemble has
given featured performances at the New Jersey Performing Art Center, various jazz clubs,
private corporate and political functions, and jazz festivals throughout New Jersey.
His orchestral endeavors have taken him to Spain, France, Israel, and Jordan, where he has given many radio and television appearances. As a freelance percussionist for more than 25 years, Chris has performed with steel pan groups African dance ensembles, brass ensembles, local orchestras, wedding bands, and community musical theater companies.
Currently, he is in preparation for his next project
as a solo multimedia multipercussionist. Chris’s recordings span genres
including the styles of jazz, classical, meditation, hip-hop, and rock. In an endeavor to promote total percussion in public schools systems, Chris has
articles for the New Jersey music educators’ magazine, Tempo, and his recent book, Incorporating Total Percussion into the Middle School Band Program, has been published through VDM Publishing House.
Chris has given percussion clinics at many public schools and Days of Percussions throughout New Jersey, and he has presented at the New Jersey Music Educators’ state convention. He has also given workshops at Rowan University and Mason Gross School of the Arts on aspects of developing a total percussion philosophy.
Chris also arranges and composes for percussion ensembles and steel pan ensembles. His
solo marimba arrangement of “Take 5” has been published through MalletWorks. With all his
experience as a music educator and performer, it was a natural progression for Chris to develop the Pulse Percussion Ensemble, a student-based intergenerational ensemble that gives public performances at local minor league ball parks, country fairs, and malls. During the holidays, this group of more than 50 percussionists from all over New Jersey turns into Holiday Percussion and plays rockin’ holiday music.