REGISTRATION 2018

REGISTRATION FOR 2018 SUMMER CAMPS IS OPEN!

 

15% EARLY BIRD REGISTRATION before April 15

$25 DISCOUNT
for registering more than one child, for each additional week,* and for referrals.

 

SECURED ONLINE 2018 REGISTRATION

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DOWNLOAD 2018 REGISTRATION FORM

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* additional-week discount override $25 sibling discount. In other words, sibling discounts only apply to the first week. For example, a family with 2 children may register both for the first week and $25 discount is applied to that week. If they both register for an additional week, then the $25 additional-week discount is applied to each child, for a total discount of $50.
note: camp weeks with guest artists require a minimum number of registrants for specialized programming. Please contact for more details.

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ICE CREAM! an original song by MusiCampers!

Our Composition and Song week is always so creative!!! And so productive!!!

What you’re hearing right now is an original song written by the MusiCamp campers from the Composition & Song week of 2013. We run a slew of creative song writing exercises throughout the week, some where the campers work independently on theirs songs, others where they work in groups. These exercises challenge the kids to think of how a pop song is made and the different components that make an effective song – the hook, the chorus, the intro, the verses, the ending, etc.

The young campers also learn to identify chord structures in a very practical and accessible way. They even make instruments, like the diddley bow or the bucket bass, and are able to play the basic I IV V chord structure on the instrument!

By the way, ICE CREAM! was written as a collaborative exercise where all the campers contributed to the making of this song. And every year, in just one week’s time, these inspired youngsters write wonderful music! It is always such a blessing to work with these young creative minds!

This year Composition & Song week runs from July 24-28, 9am – 4pm. We still have spots! You can register here.

6-week Georgian Singing Workshop

A 6 Week Workshop led by Shalva Makharashvili and Andrea Kuzmich
TUESDAYS 7 – 9 PM April 25  – May 30 2017
at the MusiCamp studio
$250 for new participants; $200 for repeat students
More info or register by email through our contact page

The picture above is of workshop leader Shalva with his children singing with Basiani, one of Georgia’s acclaimed state folk ensembles. Have a listen to them here.

IMG_1558Take part in a Georgian singing workshop and join the thousands of voices before you that have contributed to this millennia-old folk tradition. Georgia, is located in the mountainous region of the Caucasus, the crossroads of Europe and Asia. Its ancient singing tradition, known for its distinctive and haunting harmonies, was recognized by UNESCO as an intangible masterpiece of humanity in 2001. The 3-part form defies Western conventions and comes in a plethora of musical dialects, reflecting the diverse geographical and cultural makeup of the land.

 

Canada’s foremost experts in Georgian polyphony, Georgian-born singer/multi-instrumentalist Shalva Makharashvili and Andrea Kuzmich, will be leading the workshop. In this series, we’ll take a look a variety of regional styles and song-types (work/travel/table/love songs and chants). At the end of the 6 weeks we’ll have a little performance for friends and family… and a little toast – to keep it in the Georgian tradition…

To register for the workshop send us an email through the contact us page.

For some samples of Georgian songs have a listen to Shalva’s and Andrea’s trio soundcloud playlist or visit their website ZARI

 

Instrument Making at MusiCamp

Yes, these are real, playable instruments. They aren’t toys or kids’ versions. They are still played today and have an interesting social history worth telling. But best of all, they are fun to play and are excellent pedagogical tools for teaching musical concepts of tonality and harmony.

 

The Diddley Bow

The diddley bow is the instrument featured in the picture above on the left. As you can hear and see in the video below, the diddley bow is played with the neck of a glass bottle and a stick (though at MusiCamp we replace the glass bottle with a copper washer, it’s a little less dangerous). The result is very bluesy! No wonder the diddley bow is considered the precursor to the slide blues guitar.

The diddley bow is related to many different instruments found around the world (like the andibidi from the Congo, the umakweyana of West Africa, the dan bau of Vietnam, the gobichand of India). But this particular set up, a metal string expanded over wooden 2X4 (it used to be the wall or beam of house) with a metal or glass resonator, is of African American origin and emerged out of  the ugly social and economic conditions of slavery in the Southern United States.

More pictures of the diddley bow construction at MusiCamp can be found here.

The Bucket Bass

The featured image at the top of this post show three campers building/painting their bucket basses.

Below is a video of Andrea, MusiCamp’s director, and her son performing In The Highways Of The Hedges with the bucket bass. NOTE, you need headphones or good speakers to hear the bass because laptops and mobile devices tend to cut out the bottom end.

The bucket bass, closely related to the washtub or tea-chest bass, is not so different from the diddley bow. Both are one-stringed instruments and vary the tension on the string to alter pitch. The emergence and use of either the bucket, the washtub or the chest as a resonator is similarly linked to conditions of economic hardship.

For more information about the construction of the bucket bass visit our earlier post about making a washtub bass.

Cigar Box Diddley Bow

In 2015 we started making cigar box diddley bows as well (picture below).

cigarbox diddleybow

The Kids’ Stage at the 2015 Dundas West Festival

The 2015 Dundas West Festival Kids’ Stage featured a fabulous array of performances and workshops for and by kids, including some MusiCampers.

It was the 2nd year of the Kids’ Stage at the Dundas West Festival but the first for MusiCamp’s curatorial role which programmed a drumming workshop and performance, dancers, pop singers, singer-songwriters, full-out bands, a cappella groups and more – all of which featured kids as performers, some as young as 7 years old! The stage was set up just outside of St Helens Church at Dundas and St Clarens Ave. This page is an ongoing work in progress, so check back to learn more about the courageous and talented young performers at the Dundas West Fest.

 

Early morning workshop!
It started early, at 10 am with a West African Drum workshop hosted by MusiCamp’s own Anna Melnikoff. Parents and their children joined MusiCampers from West African Drumming week to explore the wonders of the Mande drumming tradition. Anna covered some basic rudiments and then taught some accompaniment patterns to the song “Aboro Ma.” She also taught some licks in a call & response fashion, as can be seen and heard at the end of this video.
 

  

 

Drum & Song @ Midday
We also learned the chorus to the song “Aboro Ma” so everyone could also sing along. Those who stuck around joined us for the mid-day all-acoustic performance, which you can view in this video.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
BrighidFry At DuWestFest

Singer Songwriters
The official stage launched at 11am with the amazing original compositions by the duo Capturing Roses. Another great songster was Brighid Fry (image on left), who not only performed a variety of great original tune but was gracious to go with the flow and split her set in two in order to accommodate others’ time constraints. Other youthful performers were The Overtones, The Tollar and Moir Girls and of course some MusiCampers.

 
 

MusiCampers Below
On the left is a video of campers from Blues week singing the 1970 funky tune “Hand Clapping Song” by the Meters and the video on the right features Luca, a MusiCamp mainstay, performing Pharrell Williams‘ “Happy”.

 

Hipsters Close the Show
Burn Apollo
The Kids’Stage officially ended with the very smooth sounds of Burn Apollo a group of grade 8 hipsters from the neighbourhood.

 

AND THANKS TO ALL THOSE WHO MADE IT A SUCCESS!!
It was a wonderful day of music for and by young musicians but it could not have happened without all the help of wonderful and tireless parents and music teachers who inspired and encouraged these kids to make music. Specific acknowledgement must be made to: Robin Mordasiewicz and family who initiated the first Kids’ Stage at the DuWest Fest in 2014; Helder Ramos, whose inspiration and tenacity magically puts form and order to the entire DuWest Fest; and Helder Pereira, who engineered the stage all day!

 

SHARE YOUR PICTURES, VIDEOS & EXPERIENCES!!
It would be great to fill in the missing detail of the day with more pictures, videos and experiences. Reach us through our Contact Page or the “Post A Question or Comment” listed below. All comments and pictures or videos will be reviewed and posted only with the parents/guardians permission

Testimonials and Endorsements

SavvyMom.ca endorsed MusiCamp as one of Toronto’s Best!

In 2014 SavvyMom.ca listed MusiCamp as one of Toronto’s best Summer Day Camp! Click the image to visit their page.

Why weren’t there camps like this when we were kids? Located in a home studio close to Dufferin Grove Park, class sizes are small and no prior musical experience or skill is required. MusiCamp summer sessions include: The Blues, Singer-Songwriter, West African Drumming. Best For: Kids 8-14 who march to their own beat.

SavvyMomdotca Endorsment

Click the image to visit Savvymom.ca

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Testimonials from Parents

From Lesley, chlid attended Roots Music week 2014

My 9 year old tried banjo for the first time at MusiCamp. Almost a year later, he’s still playing! A small, friendly space where kids’ enthusiasm for music is nurtured. 

From Jason, child attended West African Drumming week 2013

Our daughter attended a drumming week two summers ago that she still talks about.  The experience gave her confidence, and exposure to music and stories she had never had before.  We were really impressed by the camp and the performance at the end of the week. Highly recommend.

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From Julie, child attended Roots Week 2014 and Composition & Song Week 2014

Great camp! Awesome music, lots of attention – my daughter loved it!

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From Liz, child attended West African Drumming week 2013

MusiCamp was an amazing experience for my son Cyrus. Not only did he learn from the fabulous instructors in the West African Drumming week, but the experience gave him the confidence to perform a drumming/vocal solo in front of his entire school. He loved all the activities especially the instrument making and the musical walks to Dufferin Grove Park. The week culminated in a glorious recital under the grapevines. I was immensely proud of what these young musicians had accomplished in only one week! Bravo MusiCamp!

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From Orsolya, children attended Roots Music week 2014

Lily and Oliver just finished a week of Music Camp. They loved the experience and they actually learned so much in such a short time!

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From Diana, children attended Blues week 2013 and 2014

My two boys attended the Blues week last year and the year before and it was amazing experience for them.
I am very glad that I will have the opportunity to bring my children again and they are very happy to go! Andrea is a very professional singer and a dedicated teacher! We were very surprised that in such a short time the kids have learned so many songs. In the end of week they performed together (in multi-part harmonies!) and they sounded beautiful.
I am highly recommending this camp!

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Front Page Headline: WE GOT THE BEAT, 

Bloor West Villager Aug 2013