Jul 26, 2022
In Lower School Curriculum
Role at Burke's: Lower School Music Specialist July 14-17, 2022; Oakland, CA Overview: This camp was a four-day gathering of womyn drummers, teachers, and learners. Each day consisted of four 1.5 hour sessions. Each session contained multiple (up to five) choices of drumming, dance, and other offerings taught by expert teachers. Goals & Collaborations: Takeaways: I took a variety of classes including Ghanaian drumming, Afro-Colombian Bomba, Guinean Djembe, and Rhythm Reboot. My main focus was on Middle Eastern Drumming. I took a total of eight sessions in Middle Eastern Drum and percussion from three different teachers, all of whom live and teach in the Bay Area (see below) Dumbek goblet drum: basics of how to hold, three different main tones, background and history for the rhythms taught, and focus on baladi - a basic rhythm played throughout the Gulf, Middle East and Northern Africa; Rikk (tambourine) and finger cymbal technique- how to play the three different main tones, background and history for the rhythms taught, with focus also on baladi In addition to the instrument-specific skills, I got the chance to be a music student again - this always provides me with much insight into the experience my own students have - with pacing, how easily our muscles get tired, how much repetition is needed, the necessity of very specific (but still fun) insistence on proper technique from the start, how a little playing every day is the best for musical development - working with different teachers gives me insight to different styles of teaching and approaches Connection to 2022/2023 goals: I hope to transfer some of the basic technique to the gourd drums we already have to create a new drum unit for the spring of 3rd grade; I also would like to bring Susu Pamponin, one of my teachers from the camp, as a guest teacher to work with 4th graders - perhaps to culminate as part of their spring concert music How might this opportunity lead to collaboration with other faculty? This could also coordinate in some way with the 2nd-grade geography/Pollyanna project 6. Would you recommend this opportunity? Why or why not? This camp is very hands-on and specific. I would highly recommend it to any womyn who want to learn more about drumming or get more comfortable with music and percussion in general. It is a great resource for us here in the Bay Area to find people who are of the culture and/or given the blessing of indigenous musical culture-bearers, to come work with our students 7. https://womendrummers.org/ - to see list of all teachers/cultures represented at this year's camp The teachers I worked with and their class descriptions (I took all of these): Susu Pampanin and Amina Goodyear - Middle Eastern Percussion and Rhythms Basics (Middle Eastern drumming) Great class for new players and players looking to review technique to make clear sounds on the drum (dumbek, darbuka, Egyptian tabla), frame drum, riq, and finger cymbals. We will go slow and do drills and introduce a few of the most important rhythms found in Middle Eastern music. Intermediate (Middle Eastern drumming) Great class for experienced players ready to take their technique to the next level. We will learn/review the most commonly used rhythms needed to jam, play for dancers, or play in a band (Middle Eastern or fusion). We will cover basic technique at a fast pace (slaps included), learn to add accents, finger rolls, and short rolls to spice up and enhance your rhythms, jams, and solos. We will do speed building exercises and lots of technique and rhythm drills. Any rhythm request will be accommodated! Debbie Fier Basic Skills: Instruments and Rhythms of the Middle East Come enjoy the wonderful connection that we will create in our circle of drummers! We will warm up and then move into learning drum technique and Middle-Eastern rhythms. Come enjoy the power of the drum! It is a basic skills class so is very accessible for beginners. Bring your dumbeks, riqqs, tars, and hand percussion. All hand drums are also welcome!