Neil Larrivee was the Vice President of Drumstick & Mallet Innovation for the Avedis Zildjian Company. For 34 years, Neil played a unique role in the overall growth of Vic Firth while also coordinating its music-industry-leading education program. In 2016, he was responsible for bringing together both the Zildjian and Vic Firth Education staffs into a single, fully integrated department. Most recently, he was responsible for drum stick and mallet product innovation for Zildjian, Vic Firth & Mike Balter Mallet brands.
Outside of Zildjian, Neil has over 40 years of music teaching experience. He is the former Front Ensemble Director and Arranger for the Cadets Drum Corps. There, he was part of 4 Drum Corps International championships and 4 High Percussion Awards during his 16-year tenure, resulting in his induction into The Cadets Hall of Fame. In 2019, Neil returned to The Cadets serving in the role of Front Ensemble Facilitator. Additionally, he served as the Front Ensemble Director and Arranger for the Blue Stars Drum Corps from 2010 through 2012.
From 1985 – 2002, Neil was the Co-Marching Band Director, Percussion Director & Arranger at King Philip Regional High School of Wrentham, MA. During his time at King Philip, the Marching Band attained 15 Massachusetts Instrumental & Choral Conductor’s Association State Marching Band Gold Medals, 8 New England Scholastic Band Championships, 10 New England Scholastic Band High Percussion Awards, 4 United States Band Association Championships, 6 United States Band Association High Percussion Awards, 2 Bands of America Regional Championships, 2 Bands of America Grand National Semi-Finalist placements and the 2000 Bands of America Grand National AA Bronze medal. The Indoor Marching Percussion Ensemble captured the 2000 Winter Guard International Scholastic World Championship and placed second in ’97, ’98 & 2001. Additionally, the King Philip Concert Percussion Ensemble placed second in the 2001 Scholastic Concert World Class.
From 2004-2010, Neil was the front ensemble arranger for the Dartmouth High School Indoor Percussion Ensemble. During that time, Dartmouth won the 2008 and 2009 Winter Guard International Scholastic World Championship, placed second in 2006 & 2007 while also placing 3rd in 2004 & 2005. Neil served on the Winter Guard International Percussion Advisory Board & Steering Committee from 1997 – 2002 and was inducted into the Winter Guard International Hall of Fame in April of 2016. And in April of 2017, he was inducted into the Massachusetts Drum Corps and Music Educators Hall of Fame.
Neil is an active clinician and adjudicator in the marching band and indoor percussion arena. As an avid concert attendee, Neil will often be found taking in live performances of jazz, orchestral music or contemporary chamber music in Boston or wherever his travels may take him.