The Elmhurst College Music Department is proud to perform exclusively on new Gretsch drum kits, thanks to a partnership facilitated by Gretsch Company President Fred W. Gretsch ’71.
“A strong jazz program needs high-quality equipment,” said Doug Beach, director of jazz studies at the College. “Through this partnership, the department has acquired beautiful new Gretsch drum kits.”
The College and its Department of Music have a longstanding relationship not only with Fred Gretsch but also with the Gretsch Foundation and the Gretsch Company, a renowned manufacturer of guitars and drums. Together, they have funded student scholarships in music and music business, and their support was instrumental in developing the Gretsch Recording Studio. In addition, the Gretsch Electric Guitar Ensemble is named for Fred Gretsch.
“As a night school student at Elmhurst, I appreciated the course offerings and flexible schedule while I was working a full-time day job,” said Fred Gretsch. “You might say the College and I invested in one another over those early years, and it’s been fun to continue the relationship musically in the years since.”
The new drums will make their public debut on September 13, when the College’s Jazz Band performs at Oktoberfest in Glendale Heights. Elmhurst’s jazz bands, vocal jazz groups, jazz combos, concert bands, orchestra and gospel choir will all benefit from their use.
“Going forward, Elmhurst will be a Gretsch school—meaning we’ll use Gretsch drum kits exclusively in all of our performances,” said Music Department Chair Pete Griffin. “Our students are excited to play and learn on these great instruments, and we’re all extremely grateful to Fred Gretsch and the Gretsch Company for making this possible.”