• Drum Set and Percussion Setups from Musical Theater and More

Urinetown - Regional - Chris Roberts

Chris Roberts’ setup for Urinetown at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire.

“…This was when I was told the pit was literally a pit (no stairs, or elevators) and the only access were two ladders (one on either side)”


“Before having listened to the show, I always thought Urinetown wasn't a fun show to play. Boy, was I wrong!

After having received the music, I was glad to see it was only a single book and I'd be able to skip my usual first step of combining the percussion and drum books. I began the usual process of listening to recordings, compiling an instrument list, and thinking about the potential layout ideas. This was when I was told the pit was literally a pit (no stairs, or elevators) and the only access were two ladders (one on either side). Realizing it may not be worth dropping a timpani down, I opted to go electric. After playing around with sounds in Apple MainStage, on my Roland TM-2 Trigger Module, and on my Roland HandSonic HPD-20 I decided on the ease/quality ratio of the HandSonic with a Roland PD-105 Dual Zone Mesh Pad. From there, I followed my usual prescription of percussion on the right, mallets on the left, and tweaking what could be more efficient as I delved into the score.

There isn't anything particularly difficult about playing the show, however there are two challenging spots. One calls for keeping time with your feet while playing a quick arpeggio on the bells and the other is playing some syncopated tom hits while keeping time with the hi hat.

As always, the Miller Machine has been essential in this set up. There's one band break in particular where the Miller Machine has been absolutely indispensable.

Yamaha Stage Custom (Natural Finish)
  • 12"x8" Rack Tom
  • 16"x15" Floor Tom
  • 22"x17" Bass Drum
Yamaha Live Custom (Emerald Green Sunburst)
  • 14"x5.5" Snare

  • Zildjian 16" K Dark Custom Crash
  • Zildjian 20" K Dark Custom Ride
  • Wuhan 10" Splash
  • Zildjian 14" K Dark Custom Hi Hats
  • Sabian Solar 18" China Crash

  • Pearl DR-80 Drum Rack with PC-8 Rack Clamps
  • Pearl/Gibraltar Medium Weight Cymbal Arms
  • Gibraltar Multi Accessory Post
  • DW 5000 Single Bass Drum Pedal
  • Jacques Capelle Hi Hat Stand

  • Alan Abel 6” Symphonic Triangle mounted on a Miller Machine
  • Zildjian Heavy Finger Cymbal mounted on Miller Machine
  • LP Red Jam Block
  • TreeWorks Single Row Chimes

Keyboard Instruments:
  • CB Glockenspiel

  • Roland HandSonic HPD-20 with Roland PD-105 Dual Zone Mesh Pad

  • Vic Firth 7A Drum Sticks
  • Vic Firth SD6 (Swizzle B)
  • Vic Firth Heritage Brushes
  • Vic Firth M130 Orchestral Series Keyboard - Soft Plastic

February 2017