Dr. Robert LedBetter is Professor of Music at The University of Montana where he is Director of Percussion Studies. He holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Percussion Performance from the University of North Texas, a M.M. in Percussion Performance from the University of Akron, and a B.M. in Music Education from Mars Hill College. He remains active as a performer, clinician, guest conductor and adjudicator throughout the Northwest.
Prior to his appointment at UM in 1990, Dr. LedBetter taught at Eastern New Mexico University, Tarleton State University, Navarro College and held a Teaching Fellowship at the University of North Texas for four years. He is an active drumset player, percussionist and steel pan player in a variety of performing groups in the area. In addition, he is Principal Timpanist in the Missoula Symphony Orchestra and frequently performs on faculty solo and chamber recitals. As a member of the All-Star Trio at the UM Buddy DeFranco Jazz Festivals, Bob has had the distinct pleasure to play with some of the top names in the world of jazz. He is an Educational Endorser for Zildjian Cymbals, Latin Percussion, Inc. and Innovative Percussion.
The University of Montana Percussion area has developed into one of the strongest and most comprehensive programs in the Northwest. Top percussion performers and artists from around the world perform regularly as guest on UM percussion concerts and UM students have gone on to prestigious graduate schools and performing careers. In addition to the in-depth study of concert and jazz percussion, students at UM learn to perform the music of other cultures through performing in the Islanders Steel Band, West African Drum Ensemble, Salsa Band, Brazilian Ensemble, Mexican Marimba band and the Jaya Budaya Balinese Gamelan Orchestra (Indonesian percussion orchestra). The University of Montana Islanders Steel Band has released two CD recordings entitled, Summer Songs and Pandemonium.