Steve Cyphers

has been a teaching performer with Arts for Learning Maryland for over 13 years. His energy and love of music is contagious. Children learn about percussion instruments and the basics of music theory, but kids just think it’s fun. Steve receives rave reviews from teachers and students with his Adventures in Rhythm Assembly, Residency and summer programs.

Bring Steve to your school!

Contact Arts for Learning directly to book Steve Cyphers: 

855-245-2787 or

His standard residency touches on a wide range of subjects: STEM, literacy, history, geography and social studies. Steve can tailor his lessons to incorporate any curriculum priorities you have. 

Steve works well with young and older children. He has a particular talent for connecting with kids with special needs.

You can also contact Steve directly with any questions or to book a program:
301-518-3258 or

Adventures in Rhythm – RESIDENCY
(pre-K – 12th, special needs)

This program delves deeper into the origins and evolution of percussion. It provides an opportunity for students to discover old and new instruments from many different cultures. The bongos, congas, timbales, djembe, doumbek, vibra-slap, claves, woodblocks and drum-set are just some of the instruments used in his program. While exploring the different ways they produce sound, Steve teaches and reinforces the elements of music in fun and creative ways. Students form a “Bucket Band” and use custom soft mallets to play rhythms and perform songs alone and as a group. This residency is a great introduction to what it is like to learn an instrument and to be a productive and creative member of a band. Students learn valuable lessons in teamwork, respect, self-control and the rewards of practice. A culminating performance gives students a chance to demonstrate the skills they have learned. Steve is very flexible and can tailor his lessons to geography and social studies. Steve can tailor his lessons to incorporate any curriculum priorities you have. accommodate the needs of any school, class or grade. His standard residency touches on a wide range of subjects including STEM, literacy and history.

Residencies are tailored to your needs but usually include:
kick-off assembly (performing arts only)
Orientation meeting and planning session
Set of workshops for classes of up to 25 students each
A culminating student sharing event
Evaluation meeting

AUDIENCE LIMIT – 25 students per classroom
PROGRAM LENGTH – 4 (minimum) to 6 (ideal) sessions per classroom

Physical Science
World History

International Drum Month
Music in Our Schools Month
National Arts and Humanities Month
National Arts in Education Week

Adventures in Rhythm – ASSEMBLY
(pre-K – 12th, special needs)

The Adventures in Rhythm Assembly is an interactive performance by Stephen Cyphers. Steve sings songs, leads chants, plays the drum-set, bongos, congas, timbales, cowbells and more! This assembly explores the evolution of percussion from the earliest instruments like the African talking-drum drum to the modern drum-set and many in between. Students sing, chant, clap, stomp and even join the performance on stage! Students learn about the origins and evolution of these instruments and the different ways they vibrate to make sound. Steve teaches the basic elements of music along the way. This includes instruction on pitch, tone, tempo and duration. “Mr. Steve” introduces different rhythms and styles of music, performing songs from Afro-Cuban & Caribbean cultures to American R&B, Rock, Pop & Blues. Students hear James Brown, Santana, Stevie Wonder, Bo Diddley, Sly Stone and more. Students (and staff!) enjoy a concert like experience while learning unique insights & physically engaging themselves with the infectious excitement & enthusiasm that Steve has become known for within the regional live music scene for over 30 years & counting.

“It was such a wonderful experience to work with such a talented musician who was willing to both grow as a teaching artist and to share his knowledge. My first-graders loved drumming with Steve and learned so much–it is no small feat to manage a classroom of primary students with bucket drums and make it so much fun to learn!”

– Candice, Teacher, Kensington-Parkwood Elementary

“Students were very engaged! Teachers gave numerous compliments on how they enjoyed the workshops. Steve had the ability to draw students in with flexibility and being responsive to where they were at the moment.”

– Sherrie, Thomas Jefferson Elementary/Middle School

“It was a pleasure to host Steve Cyphers at my school as Artist-in-Residence with my first, second and third grade students to make music in a new, fun way. Mr. Steve was exciting to watch as he played the drums, shared classic songs, and thoroughly engaged my students through his lessons filled with bucket drumming, singing, connections to history and culture, & science connections to sound. My students had a great experience learning to be their own “band” and gave a final performance which highlighted what they had learned and were proud to share. As my students asked and I agree, “Can Mr. Steve come back?” I hope he will be able to again in the future!” 

– Dr. Rebecca Birnie, Music Teacher, Jonathan Hager Elementary School