• Drum Set and Percussion Setups from Musical Theatre and More

Chicago - International - Tim Sellars

Tim Sellars' setup for Chicago at the Court Theatre in Christchurch, New Zealand.

"For the ‘clank’ sound I went with a car brake drum..."


"I really enjoyed tackling this classic show. It was great to play it with a 7 piece band consisting of drums, double bass, two keyboards, clarinet, trumpet, and trombone.

I spent a lot of time before the first rehearsal figuring out the best possible set up for all the extra auxiliary percussion and glockenspiel. As I listened and played along with the Broadway recording, I soon realized that the position of the temple blocks and triangle was going to be key. There were some fast numbers (eg 'Me and My Baby') with intricate patterns between the blocks and triangle with no time to move too far.

I enjoyed getting to play glockenspiel in combination with the drum kit and again the placement of this instrument was important. I had it set up to my right next to my music stand and in line with the conductor. The only instruments I didn’t need to play in this score were a tambourine and the pop gun. These ended up being played by two of the cast members in their respective scenes.

For the ‘clank’ sound I went with a car brake drum which you can see is placed over on my left side by my hi-hat. I ended up striking it carefully with the brass head glockenspiel mallet which allowed it to cut through at a decent volume.

This show was fast paced with limited time between numbers. Some favourites to play were 'We Both Reached for the Gun', 'Me and My Baby', and 'Cell Block Tango'.

Would happily play this one again!"

Drums: Taye RockPro
  • 20" Bass Drum
  • 14" Floor Tom
  • 12" Rack Tom
Snare Drum:
  • 14" Tama SLP (Sound Lab Project) Vintage Poplar Maple

  • Bass Drum: Remo Powerstroke 3 for both batter and resonant heads
  • Snare Drum: Aquarian Texture Coated
  • Toms: Remo Coated Emperor's for batter and Clear Ambassadors for resonant

  • Zildjian 21" K Constantinople Big Band Ride Cymbal
  • Bosphorus 18" Traditional Series Paper Thin Crash
  • Zildjian 17" A Custom Crash 
  • Bosphorus 14” Hammer Series Hi-Hats
  • Zildjian 10” A Splash

Percussion and Accessories:
  • Glockenspiel
  • LP Castanet Machine
  • Meinl Cowbell
  • Ratchet
  • TreeWorks 5” Triangle
  • Miller Machine for Triangle
  • Acme Siren Whistle
  • Pearl Woodblocks (used as temple blocks) Ash Tone Block High-Pitch, Med-Pitch, and Lo-Pitch
  • Brake Drum (used for the ‘clank’ sound in the score)
  • Gibraltar Single Post Accessory Mount (2)
  • Gibraltar Multi 4-Post Accessory Mount
  • Gibraltar SC-Mat Medium Accessory Table
  • Shure 215 In-Ears

  • Vater Sugar Maple Sweet Ride Sticks
  • Regal Tip Classic Brushes
  • Mike Balter T1 Ultra Staccato Timpani Mallets
  • Promark Dan Fyffe DFP640 Xylophone/Bell Mallets
  • Brass Head Glockenspiel Mallets

January 2018