Larry Thompson

Larry joins the Faculty at the Academy as a working rock ‘n’ roll drummer with a 35-year music background steeped in classic jazz, fusion, blues and country genres. He has continued to expand his musical expertise by maintaining a busy performing schedule; one which allows him to share with students the practical nature and real-life experiences of playing drums professionally.

After graduating from Gainesville High School, Larry toured extensively for several years in various club bands before returning to Orlando and earning his college degree at the University of Central Florida where he was  a member of the Jazz Lab Band.

He returned to Gainesville and worked with The Hippodrome State Theatre as house drummer in numerous productions including the state-sponsored touring company of “Ain’t Misbehavin’ ” and the Tony awarding-winning “Chorus Line.”

After many years of working with numerous local bands, many of which continue to perform concert opening acts at major venues, Larry decided to “give some back.”

As an instructor, he focuses not only on the basics, but the intangibles that allow each student to realize their individual creativity as a musician/drummer. Each student will be challenged with basic notation/reading exercises based on classic and contemporary drum patterns as well as free -form improvisational jamming in standard and odd-meter time signatures.

Every drummer will have access to an extensive library of material to reference (and study at home) as well as a drumkit which will be provided at the Academy studio to make the learning process  a positive interaction. And, in the tradition of the oldest form of communication, students will be provided with relevant historical background information about the legendary drummers who made all of this possible.

All students, regardless of age or experience, are welcomed to the exciting world of drumming!