• Interview with Dr. Paul Droste

    Indiana University Tuba-Euphonium Oral History Project

    Oral History Interview of Dr. Paul Droste

    Recorded in Columbus, Ohio, March 25th, 2000Dr. Paul Droste
    Dr. Carole Nowicke

    Also present: Mr. Paul E. Bierley

    Approved by Narrator, November 2000, International Tuba-Euphonium Association
    This article appears with permission of the ITEA. It it one of over 40 such interviews with famous tuba and euphonium players, which are available to all ITEA members.
    See this blog post to learn more about the other oral history interviews.

    Dr. Paul Droste

    Paul Droste is a native of Cleveland, Ohio, born October 14th, 1936. He attended The Ohio State University for his undergraduate degree, earned a Master of Music from the Eastman School of Music, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Euphonium Performance from the University of Arizona. After a few years' experience teaching in public schools, Dr. Droste began a career of nearly 30 years duration at The Ohio State University which included 14 seasons as director of the O.S.U. Marching Band, as well as teaching applied euphonium and trombone, brass pedagogy and literature.

    Dr. Droste has performed with such ensembles as the Columbus Symphony Orchestra, the O.S.U. Faculty Brass Quintet, and the tuba-euphonium ensemble Symphonia. Dr. Droste has been involved in the International Tuba-Euphonium Association since its inception, and has served as Euphonium Coordinator. He has been a Yamaha clinician since 1970, and started the Brass Band of Columbus in 1984. Dr. Droste has also served as President of the North American Brass Band Association. He has published articles in the T.U.B.A. Journal and elsewhere, recorded euphonium solos, and made a series of recordings with the O.S.U. Marching Band and with the Brass Band of Columbus.

    Droste discusses his first teacher, composer Max Denmark, and his early experiences with trombone and euphonium. He tells of his college audition for a coveted position with the O.S.U. Marching Band and of his teacher Jack Evans. Twenty years later, Droste would direct the band and competition to join the band would be even greater.

    Droste and friends drove to Philadelphia to take lessons with Donald Reinhardt, and Droste relates stories about Reinhardt's idiosyncrasies and use of the pivot system. At Eastman he studied with Donald Knaub, and then with Lloyd Weldy at the University of Arizona. He also describes what he calls informative "sessions" with United States Navy Band euphonium soloist, Harold Brasch. Droste speaks of specific techniques and practices advocated by his teachers, in particular, those of Evans, Reinhardt, Knaub, and Brasch.

    In his search for a professional-quality euphonium, Droste tried a number of American and European-manufactured horns, and found that Yamaha instruments best suited him. He describes how he became a clinician for Yamaha and how that association proved beneficial, as well as provided support for him to take his students with him to conferences.

    Attending some of the first organizing meetings for a "tuba association" at the Music Educators National Conference Midwest meeting in Chicago, Droste was unsure that such a group would be useful for him or for his students, but became involved with what would be called the Tubists Universal Brotherhood Association. He attended as many national and regional conferences as possible over the years.

    The last section of the interview discusses Droste's efforts in establishing the Brass Band of Columbus and their many successes in national competition. The B.B.C. has not only been the winner of eight N.A.B.B.A. competitions, but has proved the inspiration for the formation of a number of adult and youth brass bands in the greater Columbus area.

    This interview was recorded in Dr. Droste's home in Columbus, Ohio on March 25th, 2000 with Paul Bierley in attendance.


    • Droste, Paul, "Arranging String Literature for Euphonium, Part I." T.U.B.A. Journal, Fall, 1977, 7-9.
    • Droste, Paul, in Bowman, Brian, ed. and comp., "Vibrato and the Euphonium: Thoughts on Using and Teaching Vibrato," T.U.B.A. Journal, Winter, 1978, 15.
    • Droste, Paul, "Arranging String Literature for Euphonium, Part II." T.U.B.A. Journal, Winter, 1978, 6-9.
    • Droste, Paul, "Begged, Borrowed, and Stolen Solo Euphonium Literature. The Instrumentalist. Vol. 35, May 1981, 30-32
    • Droste, Paul. "Let's Start a Brass Band." The School Musician, Vol. 58, Oct 1986, 18-19.
    • Droste, Paul. "Brass Band are Back: Performing Opportunities for Euphonium and Tuba Players." T.U.B.A. Journal Spring, 1989, 40-41.

    Abstract, May 15th, 2001

    Note: this is a multi-page article.
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